Sex, Spies and Secret Societies

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

'Heydrich was informed about the smallest detail of Hitler's private life. They showed that Hitler was so ruled by the daemonic forces driving him that he ceased to have thoughts of normal relations with a woman.
The ecstasies of power in every form were sufficient for him.'


Hitler's entourage included the pagan ideologue Alfred Rosenberg (whom Hitler made head of the NSDAP, pro-tem, during his residence in Landsberg).
Rosenberg - a native Balt with an abiding hatred of Soviets, Jews, and Freemasons - had appeared one day at Dietrich Eckart's apartment in Munich and offered him his services as a "fighter against Judah."

Dietrich Eckart
Alfred Rosenberg
The two soon became inseparable and it is believed that it was Rosenberg who introduced Eckart to 'The Protocols of the Elders of Zion'.
Rosenberg agitated for the creation of a state religion based on Odinic paganism and Teutonic magic, and could be relied upon to appear at the meetings of every major Nordic, Teutonic, and Aryan society in Germany both before and after the Nazis' seizure of power.
It was Rosenberg who ordered that Freemason temples in the Occupied Territories be closed by Einsatz commandos, and their contents shipped back to him in Berlin, an order cheerfully carried out by Franz Six and Otto Ohlendorf, both men known for their abiding interest in cult activity.

Blut und Boden
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Richard Walther Darre
Rosenberg's close associate and fellow pagan, Richard Walther Darre - a native of Argentina - was made Agriculture Minister of the Third Reich, but Darre's interest was less in animal husbandry and crop rotation than it was in the mystical doctrines of the runes and the 'Blut und Boden' (Blood and Soil).

Blut und Boden (Blood and Soil) refers to an ideology that focuses on ethnicity based on two factors, descent blood (of a folk) and Heimat (homeland - soil).
It celebrates the relationship of a people to the land they occupy and cultivate, and it places a high value on the virtues of rural living.
The German expression was coined in the late 19th century, in tracts espousing racialism and national romanticism.

Georg von Sluyterman Langeweyde
It produced a regionalist literature, with some social criticism.
This romantic attachment was widespread prior to the rise of National Socialism.
Major figures in 19th-century German agrarian romanticism included Ernst Moritz Arndt and Wilhelm Heinrich Riehl, who argued that the peasantry represented the foundation of the German people and conservatism.
Ultranationalists, predating National Socialism, often supported country living as more healthy, with the Artaman League sending urban children to the countryside to work, in hopes of transforming them into 'Wehrbauern'.
Richard Walther Darré popularized the phrase at the time of the rise of Nazi Germany; he wrote a book called 'Neuadel aus Blut und Boden' (A New Nobility Based On Blood And Soil) in 1930, which proposed a systemic eugenics program, arguing for breeding as a means of solving many of the problems plaguing the state.
Darré was an influential member of the NSDAP, and a noted race theorist, who assisted the party greatly in gaining support among common Germans outside the cities.

Adolf Wissel - Bauernfamilie
Prior to their ascension to power, the National Socialists called for a return from the cities to the countryside.
This agrarian sentiment allowed opposition to both the middle class and the aristocracy, and presented the farmer as a superior figure beside the moral swamp of the city.
The doctrine not only called for a "back to the land" approach and re-adoption of rural values; it held that German land was bound mystically to German blood.
Peasants were cultural heroes, who held charge of German racial stock and German history - as when a memorial of a medieval peasant uprising was the occasion for a speech by Darré praising them as force and purifier of German history
This would also lead them to understand the natural order better, and in the end, only the man who worked the land really possessed it.
Urban culture was decried as a weakness, "asphalt culture", that only the Führer's will could eliminate.

The team of Rosenberg and Darre picked up in the Reich where the team of Rosenberg and Eckart left off in Weimar.

Munich Putsch
Rosenberg, with his impeccable credentials dating back to the early days of the formation of the Nazi Party and its baptism of blood in the Munich Putsch, was a high-profile Reichsleiter with a blatantly pagan and anti- Christian philosophy, a philosophy which received wide coverage in the German press.
Darre was there to support this platform and, if possible, to do him one better on occasion.
Together, they travelled the nation drumming up support for an official state religion based on the worship of the Old Gods, a religion that included purifying the Aryan race of elements that were in the process of polluting it and diluting the strength of its Blood.
The danger of the Jews
to the Aryan man
The Jew was the 'Serpent'
in the pagan Garden of Eden.

To these 'true believers', sex was at once fascinating and repellent; the danger of the Jews to the Aryan man and woman was their sensuality, their ability to seduce the pure-bloods away from their duty to procreate only blue-eyed Teutons.
The Jew was the 'Serpent' in the pagan Garden of Eden.

One pagan and occultist who was not bothered by sexuality, however, and who made it a cornerstone of his philosophy was the English magician and tabloid-crowned "Wickedest Man in the World" - Aleister Crowley.

Theodor Reuss
Aleister Crowley
Crowley - whose life has been well and thoroughly discussed by a wide variety of authors, including himself - provides us some entrée into the German occult scene of the 1920s and 1930s.
Crowley will take us to such important German sex-cultists as Theodor Reuss, Karl Germer, Eugene Grosche, Heinrich Tranker, and Marthe Kuntzel, not to forget the British Army officer Maj. Gen. C.F. Fuller, who was once a guest of Hitler himself at the latter's Berchtesgaden retreat to celebrate the Fuhrer's fiftieth birthday on April 20, 1939.

Maj. Gen. C.F. Fuller
Fuller - an anti-Semite and contributor to Oswald Moseley's 'Fascist Quarterly', a devoted Thelemite (that is to say, follower of Crowley's own religion) and an intimate of Crowley - was said to be the 'only Englishman that Hitler actually liked'.
Crowley will take us on a tour of Leipzig, Munich, and the province of Thuringia, where a secret convocation of German occultists was held in 1925 to determine the future leadership of the Ordo Templi Orientis, the German sex-magic occult lodge that would eventually be suppressed by the Nazis, its members thrown into the camps.
So, in order to understand what the "subversive" German sex cults were doing, and why, we must start with Aleister Crowley and what he was up to in Germany in 1912.


Crowley was born on October 12, 1875, in England, not far from the town of Stratford-on-Avon where Shakespeare was born, and only a few weeks before Baron Sebottendorff's own birth near Dresden that November.
Crowley as a Boy
Hermetic Order of the
Golden Dawn
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Raised in an oppressively fundamentalist Christian environment, he came early on to regard himself as the 'Beast of the Apocalypse', the one branded with a 666 and with the Whore of Babylon for aid and comfort.
He became an initiate of the Golden Dawn - that fabulously complex jewel of European occultism - on November 18, 1898.
The Hermeti  Order of the Golden Dawn had been created ten years earlier by the team of Mathers, Westcott, and Woodman.
As we have seen, the official story had it that the Golden Dawn was a branch of an order that existed in Germany, and that a charter from the parent lodge had been granted to the Englishmen from a Fraulein Anna Sprengel of Nürnberg

Dr. William R. Woodman
Dr. William Wynn Westcott
At the time that Crowley was initiated into the Golden Dawn, that would have been accepted as truth, and Crowley would probably have believed that he was indeed being initiated into what was the British section of a German secret society.
Since then, the German origins of the Golden Dawn have questioned.
It is quite likely that the entire ritual and initiatory structure of the Dawn was nothing less than the brilliant invention of Mathers himself, an invention for which, sadly, he could never claim credit since a major element in the attraction of occult societies rests on their having a long and distinguished - if covert and underground - pedigree.

Interestingly enough, the degree structure of the Golden Dawn was based on the famous Tree of Life symbol: a complex diagram of ten spheres connected by a total of twenty-two paths (each path representing a letter of the Hebrew alphabet) that can be consulted in any one of a variety of books on qabalism and Western occultism.
This same Tree of Life diagram was used by the old Wotanist Guido von List to represent the hierarchical grace structure in his own ideal Ario-Germanic society and, like the Golden Dawn, he reserved the top three degrees as being inaccessible to the average human being. (Crowley, of course, would eventually assume all three after leaving the Golden Dawn and forming his own organization, the A...A....)
It is entirely possible that List - writing about these ideas in 1911 - had adopted this degree system from the Golden Dawn, which had put it to use as early as 1888 based on "Anna Sprengel's" instructions.
If so, the only way in which List could have discovered this degree system was either through initiation into the Golden Dawn or from another initiate who (breaking his oath of secrecy) described it to him.
That the godfather of the Occult Reich, Guido von List, might have been a Golden Dawn initiate is an unsettling proposition.

Dr. Robert William Felkin
Dr. Hubbe-Schleiden
However, there was much communication taking place at this time between England and Germany involving such occult celebrities as Golden Dawn initiate Dr. R.W. Felkin (who was actually looking for Fraulein Sprengel in Germany), Dr. Hubbe-Schleiden (whom we met previously as the first president of the German branch of the Theosophical Society) and Dr. Rudolf Steiner (who was involved at this time with Franz Hartmann's Masonic lodges as well as with the OTO).

Dr. Robert William Felkin (1853-1926) was a medical missionary, explorer, ceremonial magician and member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. Felkin is best known as the founder of the Stella Matutina, a schismatic off-shoot of the Golden Dawn.
In 1912, he also founded the Whare Ra Temple in Havelock North, New Zealand.

Rudolf Steiner
Franz Hartmann
Felkin, intent on forging links with legitimate Rosicrucian lodges and acting under mediumistic supervision of a discarnate Arab entity by the name of Ara Ben Shemesh, was desperately seeking Sprengel and hoped that either Hubbe-Schleiden or Rudolf Steiner could assist in that regard.
Needless to say, the search came to naught, but the fact of these three occultists communicating and exchanging information on cult activities is provocative.
Historian Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke opines that List got the idea of a Tree of Life initiatory system from the inescapable Dr. Hartmann, who possibly heard of it from the energetic Dr. Westcott.

Guido List
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If so, we have the leaders of the Armanenschaft (List's name for his own secret society), the Golden Dawn, and the OTO exchanging details on their secret initiations.
That List would have based his hierarchy on the patently Jewish Tree of Life and borrowed the concept from the Golden Dawn - by way of the OTO - would seem merely ironic to a layperson but positively frightening to an occultist, for what it implies about the relationship between the anti-Semitic List organizations and the ostensibly apolitical Golden Dawn and OTO lodges.
In any event, List amended the qabalistic correspondences to suit himself and essentially developed his own - Aryan - version of the Golden Dawn initiatory system.

John Dee's Magical Equipment
Dr. John Dee
Another element of the Golden Dawn which is relevant to our case is that the structure of many of its rituals, the peculiar language in which its invocations are made, and the odd designs of many of the magic seals and insignia are all based on a system of occult correspondences known as Enochian, and codified within the writings of Elizabethan mathematician, philosopher, and spy, Dr. John Dee.
Crowley would become so conversant with the "Enochian" language that he would translate medieval spirit conjurations into that tongue for use by his own cult members.

Having its own alphabet and its own rules of grammar, its very existence is a technical impossibility: an artificially created language developed by one (or at most two) men in the sixteenth century, John Dee and his assistant Edward Kelley.
According to their story, it was given to them by an angel who communicated the language, the alphabet, and all the magic squares, invocations, etc. by means of a laborious process that took months of "scrying" in the equivalent of a crystal ball.
The massive amount of manuscript that resulted from these bizarre efforts has been largely ignored by historians of the Elizabethan period, or cited as evidence of Dee's emotional instability.
In fact, the existence of these writings was used for many years to discredit Dee's genius altogether.
(This is a pattern of thought that exists to this day: occult practices are evidence of either insanity, emotional instability, or simple credulousness.)
Sir Francis Walsingham
However, recent research into the Elizabethan period and particularly concerning Dee's relationship to Sir Francis Walsingham (1530-1590), Queen Elizabeth's secretary of state, suggests that Dee was on a secret mission for the British government at the time of the angelic revelations (which took place in Prague).
Further, as the pseudonymous historian Richard Deacon has pointed out, the Angelic language itself may have been devised as a particularly effective code - based on the work of famed German cryptographer Johannes Trithemius (1462-1516) - for communication between Dee in Prague and Walsingham in England.
In other words, the entire basis of the famous occult order known as the Golden Dawn may well have had its origins in espionage work, from the coded language of Elizabethan spy and mystic John Dee to the "Cypher manuscript" of a possibly non-existent German lodge.

Rose Edith Kelly
Some years later, following his various and several initiations into the Golden Dawn, Crowley found himself in position to help a lodge brother, Gerald Kelly.
Kelly, a distinguished member and president of the Royal Academy, had a sister by the name of Rose, who was engaged to someone she did not wish to marry.
Crowley rushed to the aid of Rose Kelly, and proposed that - in order to thwart the fiancé - she elope with Crowley himself.
It was to be purely a marriage of convenience, of course, whose only purpose was to ensure that she would not have to marry the unfortunate gentleman who was pursuing her.
She agreed. They eloped. Fell madly in love. Consummated the union. And went on a honeymoon.
This, much to the consternation of her brother Gerald.

Le Caire - Musee de Boulak
The honeymoon took the blissful couple to Cairo in 1904, where the event was to take place that would change Crowley's life - and the lives of thousands of his followers down the years - forever, for Rose, who had never before evinced any signs of mediumistic powers, suddenly began to "channel" an alien entity who demanded to speak directly to Crowley.

Stella of Revealing
To be exact, she began receiving impressions that the Gods wanted to speak with Crowley on an urgent matter and, for verification, she led Crowley to an exhibit at the Cairo Museum which bore the fateful number, 666.
The 'exhibit' is now known as the 'Stella of Revealing'.

The Stele of Ankh-ef-en-Khonsu is a painted, wooden offering stele, discovered in 1858 at the mortuary temple of Hatshepsut at Dayr al-Bahri by François Auguste Ferdinand Mariette. It was originally made for the Montu-priest Ankh-ef-en-Khonsu. It dates to circa 680/70 BCE, the period of the late Dynasty 25/early Dynasty 26. Originally located in the former Bulaq Museum under inventory number 666, the stele was moved around 1902 to the newly opened Egyptian Museum of Cairo (inventory number A 9422; Temporary Register Number 25/12/24/11), where it remains today.
The stele is made of wood and covered with a plaster gesso, which has been painted. It measures 51.5 centimeters high and 31 centimeters wide. On the front Ankh-ef-en-Khonsu is as a priest of Montu can be seen; he is presenting offerings to the falcon-headed god Re-Harakhty ("Re-Horus of the Two Horizons"), a synchronistic form of the gods Ra and Horus, who is seated on a throne. The symbol of the west, the place of the Dead, is seen behind Re-Harakhty. Above the figures is a depiction of Nut, the sky goddess who stretches from horizon to horizon. Directly beneath her is the Winged Solar Disk.
Aleister Crowley - 666
The stele is also known as the "Stele of Revealing" and is a central element of the religious philosophy Thelema founded by Aleister Crowley.

Rose, not aware of her husband's personal identification with that number and the Great Beast it represents, was obviously in contact with divine forces, and Crowley took her impressions seriously.
For three days in April, 1904, Aleister Crowley communed with a spirit called Aiwass.

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Aiwass was the name of a voice that English occultist Aleister Crowley claimed to have heard on April 8, 9, and 10th in 1904. Crowley claimed that this voice dictated 'The Book of the Law' (or Liber Legis) to him.
The book contains three chapters, each of which was written down in one hour, beginning at noon, on 8 April, 9 April, and 10 April in Cairo, Egypt, in the year 1904. Crowley says that the author was an entity named Aiwass,

Aiwass communicated a scripture to Crowley in the voice of three Egyptian gods - Nuit, Hadit, and Ra-Hoor-Khuit - that became known as 'The Book of the Law': the gospel of the New Age, the Aeon of Horus.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Crowley himself has written that the book initially repelled him; that he put it away and actually lost track of the manuscript for five years until one day he found it in an attic and reread it for the first time since 1904.
At that point, he suddenly realized he was holding the key scripture of the next Aeon (a magickal age of two thousand years).

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
'The Book of the Law' attacks most modern religions, from Judaism to Christianity to Islam to Buddhism, and thus would have been an interesting document to the inner circle of the Reich.

Liber AL vel Legis is the central sacred text of Thelema, written by Aleister Crowley, who claimed it was dictated to him by a discarnate entity named "Aiwass".

'The Book of the Law'
Liber AL vel Legis
The full title of the book is Liber AL vel Legis, sub figura CCXX, as delivered by XCIII=418 to DCLXVI, and it is commonly referred to as The Book of the Law. Through the reception of this book, Crowley proclaimed the arrival of a new stage in the spiritual evolution of humanity, to be known as the "Æon of Horus". The primary precept of this new aeon is the charge to "Do what thou wilt".
The word Æon here means an era of time, and not - more correctly - a Gnostic 'spiritual entity'.

It also proclaims -  in a book written in 1904 - "I am the Warrior Lord of the Forties," an eerily prescient prediction of the greatest military conflagration ever to hit the planet.
Crowley's occult career did not end with 'The Book of the Law'.
In due course he penned many hundreds of tracts, pamphlets, articles, and books, all on the theme of "Magick": spelled with a "k" to differentiate it from all other types.
When it came to Magick, Crowley was a genius.
His command of mythology, religion, philosophy, the arts, and foreign languages was (and remains) legendary.
He was the English version of a Guido von List with at least one important distinction: Crowley had a sense of humor, and it is through this sense of humor that the full range of his intellectual brilliance shines.
Whatever one thinks of Crowley as a human being or of 'Thelema' - the cult he founded on the basis of 'The Book of the Law' - one thing is certain: Crowley was an inspired and engaging author on the whole field of occultism.

Thelema (θélima) is a religion that was developed by the early 20th century British writer and ceremonial magician, Aleister Crowley. He came to believe himself to be the prophet of a new age, the Æon of Horus, based upon a spiritual experience that he and his wife, Rose Edith, had in Egypt in 1904. By his account, a possibly non-corporeal or "praeterhuman" being that called itself Aiwass contacted him and dictated a text known as 'The Book of the Law' or 'Liber AL vel Legis', which outlined the principles of Thelema. An adherent of Thelema is a Thelemite.


Crowley accepted initiations into a variety of occult lodges and societies in his time, and eventually picked up an initiation into something called the Ordo Templi Orientis, or the Order of the Eastern Temple.

 Ordo Templi Orientis
 Order of the Eastern Temple
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Karl Kellner
This was the brainchild of one Karl Kellner, a wealthy German Freemason of high rank in a rather distaff branch of Freemasonry (the Rite of Memphis and Mizraim of John Yarker), who claimed that he was instructed in the techniques of sex-magic by a Hindu adept and two Arab magi during his travels in the East.
He introduced this concept to his associates, Theodor Reuss, Heinrich Klein, and the ubiquitous Dr. Franz Hartmann, all of whom were also high-ranking Masons in Yarker's sect.
"Sex-magic" is a loaded term with all sorts of connotations, and it is perhaps best that we discuss what Kellner - and later OTO initiates - meant by it.

Dr. Franz Hartmann
Theodor Reuss
It is, quite simply, a method of sublimating sexual energy to the will of the magician in a variety of rituals, for a variety of purposes, using the sexual practice appropriate to the desired end.
Thus, everything from the missionary position to sodomy to masturbation has a magical analogue, and refers to a different quality of occult power.
The choice of partner is also a matter for some concern, and the practice of sex-magic has become so refined by later initiates of the Order that even the specific days of a woman's menstrual cycle (for instance) each has its own occult correspondence.
While this concept may seem somewhat scandalous to the casual reader, one should remember that a core doctrine of all occultism - from the highest qabala to the meanest sympathetic magic - is that of correspondences.
Astral Plane
In this doctrine, everything that exists in the "real" world has a counterpart in the astral world.
Thus an object made of gold can be used to represent the sun, which is itself representative of a host of ideas (vitality, warmth, the Male principle, action, ego, etc.).
On this is magic based.

The Lovers - Eric Gill
Following that line of reasoning through, every conceivable sort of sex act must also have its analogue in the astral domain, where magic works its mysterious wonders.
Obviously, this dimension was hard to find in the generally available teachings of the Golden Dawn, the Freemasons, and other like organizations with their heavy emphasis on formal ritual alone.

The Great Rite
The sex magicians also used a great deal of ritual - much of it familiar to magicians of other disciplines - but with some version of the sex act as the central feature.
Magic is, after all, about power; about directing energy and will to a given end.
Sex is the natural companion to this doctrine of power, for it is arguably the most potent of all human experiences.

Tantric Sex Magic
Wed sex to magic and theoretically one would obtain a dynamo of vast occult potential.
In India, this combination was already well-known as a form of worship called "tantra": a Hindu religious practice in which members of both sexes would participate in various rituals (not all of them overtly sexual by any means) designed to invoke the gods and to imitate the union of the two forms of polar power in the universe, the male and female energies referred to in China as Yang and Yin, respectively, and in India as Shiva and Shakti.
Traditionally, there are two forms of tantric ritual: right-hand and left-hand. Right-hand tantric ritual is that which takes place when the female participant sits at the right hand of the male.
In this instance, actual physical contact between the partners will not take place.
It is left-hand tantra that gets all the attention, however, because of the mistaken notion that it is somehow "evil."
The term "left-hand path" has become synonymous in the West with black magic and with evil sorcerers who have sold their souls to the Devil: a manifestation of the superstition that left-handedness itself is a sign of aberration.
However, "left-hand" tantric ritual is simply that in which the female participant sits at the left hand of the male in the ritual.
In this case, physical contact takes place between the two partners but this in no way mandates sexual intercourse every time, in every rite.
Certainly, among some practitioners in the East, the left-hand tantric circle has become a sexual one and there is a small library of techniques, rituals, invocations, chants, etc. appropriate to this type of magic.
But the point to be made here is that all tantra is inherently sexual in nature as it is concerned with the activities of both the male and female gods and goddesses and their relationship to each other in the eternal play of creation.
Whether or not actual sexual intercourse takes place on the physical plane or not is a matter for tantric "engineers" to decide, depending on the path chosen and the means agreed to by all parties.
In all cases, the sexual act is considered subordinate to the ultimate goal of spiritual liberation.
It is a means to an end, and nothing more.

Hitler Speaks
As we have seen, Hitler was (probably unconsciously) putting this same knowledge to good use.
As Schellenberg pointed out in the quotation that begins this section, Hitler had so sublimated his sexual urges that he found relief in the  speeches that he made to the assembled, adoring masses, and had long ceased to be interested in normal sexual intercourse with women.
On the other side, his speeches were so mesmerizing that even foreigners who spoke no German at all were captivated by Hitler's oratory.
In other words, the magical, tantric technique worked.
Hitler wanted power more than anything else, and was willing to sacrifice friends and lovers to that end.
He transformed his sexual desire into a tool for obtaining power ... and became the leader of Germany (a country he wasn't even born in).
Schellenberg - who was no fool - even credits the stories about Hitler's 'powers of intuition and personal magnetism',  in effect giving credence to what a medieval audience would have called Hitler's abilities as a sorcerer.
A modern, twentieth-century occult audience would call Hitler a sex magician.

But to return to Crowley, in post-Victorian England this was racy stuff.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Sex magic was certainly far and away from anything the Golden Dawn was teaching, and Crowley became intrigued by it all when Theodor Reuss - the Outer Head of the Order (OHO) of the OTO - visited Crowley in London in 1912 (during the height of a flurry of occult activity in Germany involving everything from the death of Theosophist eminence grise Franz Hartmann, warring Theosophical societies vying for members and recognition, and the creation, by Rudolf Steiner, of his Anthroposophical Society that same year, not to mention the founding of the Germanenorden that May), and accused him of revealing the core secret of the Order in a publication of Crowley's called the 'Book of Lies'.

'Book of Lies'
Aleister Crowley
Crowley, taken rather aback, replied that he could not reveal the secret of the OTO since he had not attained the appropriate degree in the Order and had therefore never been told what the secret was.
When Reuss pointed out a revealing phrase having to do with a "Magick Rood" and a "Mystic Rose," (elements which, in a Freudian sense, could be understood as representing the male and female genitals, respectively) Crowley had a flash of insight, and the two men came to a mutual understanding.

Hagal Rune - The True Will
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Crowley visited Berlin later in 1912 to obtain a charter making him the head of the OTO for Great Britain, and all of the English-speaking peoples of the world, in the process choosing as his magical name the title of that infamous Templar statue: Baphomet.
He then descended upon the rituals of the OTO with relish, rewriting them to make them more overtly sexual and incorporating his own newly minted religious ideas - which he called Thelema after the Greek word for "Will" (referring to the True Will) - into the liturgy.
It was as if a whole new world was opened up to him, for now he could make his favourite pastime - sex - not only compatible with magic but central to it.
He began to see that the whole universe of magic - the rituals, techniques, specialized language - was merely a means of presenting sexual information in a coded form.


With this sudden illumination came a profusion of small articles on sex-magic that were translated into German by Reuss's people and published there for the first time.
Until relatively recently, in fact, they had not been available in English at all.
These treatises discuss the occult methods to be employed during auto-erotic, heterosexual, and homosexual sex acts, and concern everything from uniting with one's god or goddess through masturbation or intercourse, to making talismans for various purposes, and even using sex to achieve enlightenment.
These few booklets can stand as the West's answer to, and interpretation of, Hindu tantrism, particularly of the Kaula Shastra variety, with a little distaff Sufism thrown in for good measure.
Quite simply, we are dealing with the subordination of the sex act to the Great Work by the magician and mystic of every age.

Temptations of St Anthony
The Christian eremites (Temptationsof St Anthony) who suffered intense sexual fantasies in the desert as they strove to transform their desire for sex into a desire for God would have recognized the singular purpose in these Crowleyan tracts while at the same time abhorring the practices described.
Crowley maintains that every sex act of an Adept is a sacred act and should not be the result of a lascivious appetite.
Yet, while Crowley - and the members of the German occult lodges who were following this regimen - believed that every sexual act was a magical expression of the 'Will' and had to be performed with procreation in sight, it is not the type of procreation the Church has in mind.

Aleister Crowley
Crowley's ideal children were 'magical children', such as described in his entertaining and revealing novel, 'Moonchild'.
Every magickal act - and this includes sex - has a purpose that must be established beforehand.
With Crowley there is no sex for pleasure only.
This attitude of Crowley's has been under-represented in the many books and articles written about him.
Most authors view Crowley's description of his sexual antics as "magical rites" with a huge amount of derision; yet, his diaries are full of just such occult annotations as he meticulously recorded hundreds of sexual acts that he performed along with a careful description of their occult purposes: whether they were to consecrate talismans, obtain information through divination, commune with a spirit or a god, or whatever.
Crowley was at great pains to find a way to indulge a tremendous sexual appetite in a manner that was free of any hint of the "baser" nature of sex.
In this, he may have been searching for a way to satisfy subconscious elements of his psyche that were linked to his fundamentalist Christian upbringing: a way of having one's cake of light and eating it, too.
Whatever the purpose, and however successful or not he may have been, Crowley's initiation into the Ordo Templi Orientis is the source of much of the literature by and about Crowley today.
The discovery of the existence of a sexual occultism was all the fuse this brilliant if eccentric Englishman needed to detonate the volatile compound of his great intelligence mixed with a sincere - if outlandish - spirituality.
That there existed a higher form of sex, perhaps the application of the sex act, sexual positions, sexual fluids, and even sexual pleasure to spiritual goals like illumination and unity with Godhead, appealed to Crowley immensely for it made of sex a magical laboratory wherein any experiment was justified if not actually demanded by the rigours of scientific method.

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The occultists of the OTO had applied "the art of German engineering" to the sex act, taking it, in effect, out of the bedroom and into the lab.

Mount Brocken
Of course, the use of sex in rituals was nothing new to Europe.
The use of sexual rites to insure fertility of the crops was known thousands of years before the word "tantra" became a commonplace on European tongues; and the witches were accused by the Holy Inquisition of conducting sex orgies on the top of Mount Brocken.

Phryne at Eleusis
The Rites of Eleusis were almost certainly sexual in nature, and sex in general formed part of many ancient mystery religions in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia (to wit: the voluminous evidence available in James George Frazer's 'The Golden Bough').

James George Frazer
It could be argued that the advent of Christianity changed all that with its bachelor God, its virgin Mother, its celibate priests and nuns, and its general hostility to sex of any kind.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

It is probably for this reason that we find no discussion of "sexual secrets" in Freemasonry, for example, and the sexual discussions around Rosicrucianism are almost always hidden behind the heavily veiled symbolic shorthand of the alchemists.

Black Mass
In short, the mystification of sex has always been with us; so has the mystification of eating and drinking (in the Mass, in various pagan festivals of harvest time) and the mystification of respiration (in the pranic exercises of the yogis, in the meditations of the Eastern Orthodox "Jesus Prayer," etc.); in other words, all the senses and most physical functions have been the subject of magical or mystical practices at one time or another and sex is no exception.
In the modern Western world, however, with the sexual act pushed into the background by a fastidious Christianity and not discussed in polite company, it was inevitable that only the most outrageous occult societies would have fixated on sex as the key to all other magical rites and powers.
Thus, the popular image of the satanic altar in the Black Mass as being a nude virgin or prostitute is apt: to be anti-Christian was to be pro sex.


Brotherhood of Saturn
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Eugene Grosche
But how does one maintain an anti-Christian stance in an environment unremittingly pro- Christian?
Either by going underground - as the occultists did and still do - or by going overboard.
The German lodges - such as the OTO and the Brotherhood of Saturn - opted for the former, but the Thulists chose the other path.
Let us read the words of SS officer Otto Rahn, the enthusiastic Grail-seeker, who defines the problem for us towards the end of his 'Luzifers Hofgesind':

'Luzifers Hofgesind'
Otto Rahn
'Whereas Christianity is occupied above all with Man and condemns Nature as anti-divine by abandoning it to the atheistic realms of science and technology, Paganism believed that nature was full of gods.
All phenomena were words or actions attributed to Genies and Spirits.
In this sense one must consider it more pious, more "religious," more "Christian" than Catholicism and Protestantism which both display a desire for domination and the imposition of an implacable Law, ideas which permeated Christianity more due to the influence of Rome and Judaism than due to the influence of Christ.'

(It should be noted that this view - in a book by an SS officer published in Germany with, it must be assumed, National Socialist imprimatur - anticipated the controversial 1967 article by Lynn White in 'Science Magazine', which blamed Christianity for the world's ecological crisis by calling our "arrogance towards nature" the result of "Christian dogma.")
So, there we have the 'overboard' solution.
Simply claim that you are more pious, more "religious," and more "Christian" than the Church.
Claim you have penetrated to the deepest mysteries of Christianity and that, in your opposition to the organized Church, you are only doing what Christ did to the money-changers in the Temple and would do today had he been around and was the one with the whip.
For this is what Hitler believed, and what Himmler carried out.

For example, the Lebensborn organization of the SS - which every SS officer was obligated to join - put some of this into practice.

Ostara - von Liebenfels 
It was inevitable that someone like Hitler, who had grown up reading the  occult newsletters of von Liebenfels and, later, of Julius Streicher, would have agreed to the institution of a cult brothel for the propagation of the Aryan race.
In this organization, women selected for their racial purity, and adherence to the Teutonic ideal of womanhood in physical appearance, as well as in spiritual composition were maintained for their impregnation by equally Aryan SS men.

The Lebensborn communities were, in a sense, farms where Aryan babies were bred.
There was even a plan to do away with the whole idea of matrimony as it placed an undue burden on the Aryan race, whose mission was to colonize the entire world with perfect racial specimens.
There were, after all, many more non-Aryans in the world than Aryans, and it would take time and manpower to exterminate them all.

Besides, healthy Aryan stock was needed to cultivate the fields appropriated during the drive to the East mandated by Haushofer's Lebensraum policy. Although the Lebensborn concept was never openly discussed as an anti-Christian policy - and anyway the NSDAP in general and the SS in particular were the repository of the real secrets of Christianity and were on the verge of obtaining the Holy Grail itself - it was generally understood that the Catholic Church would not approve.

Lebensborn SS Naming
The christening or baptismal ceremonies which took place in the Lebensborn communities were pagan rites devised by SS occultists to replace those familiar to these husbandless Lutheran and Catholic mothers; thus there could be no doubt among even this, the most militarily uninvolved segment of the Occult Reich, that the Reich was pagan, and that Christianity was to be eventually replaced as surely as Judaism was on the list for immediate extinction.
For the occult lodges, this was not a problem.
Marriage was, indeed, a bit petite bourgeois and destined for the junk heap of history but, in the meantime, sexuality was still a powerful occult tool, the manifestation in the visible world of the flow of energy in the unseen dimensions.

Homonculi - Artificial Humans
Magicians had "magickal children" on those planes, and could even create familiars and homonculi - artificial humans - using these techniques, thereby rendering the institution of marriage as a means of ensuring the future of the race rather outré.

Thule Society
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Magicians already lived in the world the Thulists were trying to create.
It was a vast one, with a multiplicity of dimensions in endless space.
We have taken all this space to discuss the official Völkisch attitude to sex and marriage since it can be seen as an indirect result of ideas current in Germany for many years before Hitler came to power: ideas concerning sexuality that were ostensibly alien to pious, anti-Semitic Germany and its organized religion, and which had to come from somewhere.

Erik Jan Hanussen
Hitler, influenced by Liebenfels, Eckart and Hanussen, took a very broad-minded view of sex.

SA Leader Ernst Röhm
Indeed, he is said to have known about SA Leader Ernst Röhm's homosexuality for years and tolerated it ... a rather astounding generosity for that man in that time and place.
In fact, a great many SA men were homosexuals, which may seem surprising to some as the SA were the epitome of military machismo ... and Röhm, their leader, was the ultimate fighting man.
Crowley went to America during World War I after being rejected for military service by his own government (or so he claimed).

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
When Hitler was fighting the Allies as an enlisted man in the trenches of France and Belgium, writing Wotanist poetry full of magical symbolism, Crowley was writing pro-German propaganda for 'The Fatherland', a journal published in New York by one George Viereck, who had known Crowley slightly from years before.
Crowley needed a job, and agreed to take over as editor of 'The Fatherland'.
He claimed to be Irish, which would have made him a natural enemy of the English if true (which it wasn't).
He even went so far as to row out to the Statue of Liberty one day and mime burning his British passport, an event that was duly recorded by no less an astute observer than the New York Times.
Later, when confronted by all of this, he would claim that he was really working for the British cause since he had turned 'The Fatherland' into something of a joke.

Kaiser Wilhelm II
Reductio ad absurdum was the technique he employed: in other words, his articles were so outlandish that the journal was reduced to absurdity, a caricature of serious political discussion, which would help the British cause much more than harm it. In one such article, for instance, he compared Kaiser Wilhelm II to Parsifal in search of the Grail, and claimed that the Celts were descended from the same race as Osiris and Isis.
In another, an article dated November, 1917, for a sister publication of 'The Fatherland' called 'The International', he wrote that the world's press was responsible for the war and that the aftermath of the conflict could only bring about 'bankruptcy, revolution, and famine', which was certainly true but did not require the special skills of a master magician to foresee.
Incidentally, the above topics were quite in keeping with Listian sentiments and would have been familiar to any völkisch audience.

George Viereck
George Viereck himself is something of a minor legend.
He is probably the same Viereck whom Freud mentions as a 'journalist, politician, writer, quite a handsome fellow' who supplied him with some food during the terrible shortages in Vienna at the end of 1919.
The same George Sylvester Viereck interviewed Freud years later, in 1926, on the subject of anti-Semitism and included the interview in a collection entitled 'Glimpses of the Great', that was published in 1930
Heinrich Himmler
And it was certainly the same George Sylvester Viereck who was implicated in one of America's most famous spy cases of the Second World War.
Viereck - who was the illegitimate grandson of Kaiser Wilhelm II - became an enthusiastic admirer of the Third Reich and essentially its chief publicist in America from his posh apartment on Manhattan's Riverside Drive.
The Kaiser had a son in the Gestapo, and Viereck used this connection to get close to Himmler, whom he saw as a kindred spirit: a royalist who admired the old Teutonic kings and who wished for nothing so much as a restoration of the Hohenzollern monarchy.
Himmler, with his mystical worship at the shrine of King Henry I, with whom he identified, seemed simpatico; a door into the corridors of power for the scheming journalist.


During the First World War, Viereck became implicated in a plot to sabotage American factories as early as 1915 (in other words, two years before America entered the war).

'The Fatherland'
This would have been about the time he encouraged Crowley to take over as editor of 'The Fatherland'.
A briefcase full of plans for espionage, sabotage, and the invasion of the United States had been left, forgotten, by one of Viereck's agents on the Sixth Avenue El in Manhattan in plain sight of an American secret agent who had been sent to follow them.
He picked up the briefcase and blew the story wide open.
Oddly, Viereck never spent a day in jail for his role in the elaborate plotting against his adopted country.
With the start of the Third Reich, Viereck oversaw an extensive pro-Hitler propaganda campaign and was central to German efforts to generate support among German-Americans for the Hitler regime.
Through his 'Board of Trade for German-American Commerce' he was also able to provide an underground rail-road for German agents fleeing South America when they became unmasked.

 Ernest Lundeen
But by far the most sensational aspect of Viereck's career was the revelation that a United States Senator, Ernest Lundeen of Minnesota, was in his employ.
On August 31, 1940 - one step ahead of an FBI arrest - Lundeen took a flight from Washington, D.C. to his home state, ostensibly to confess all to his wife. He never made it. Lundeen, an FBI agent sent to tail him wherever he went, and eighteen other passengers died when their plane went down in a severe storm amid suspicions of Nazi sabotage.
Two days later, and Lundeen's wife Norma was in Washington, demanding possession of the 'Viereck files'.
These files revealed the full extent of Lundeen's complicity in Viereck's massive propaganda campaign, even to the extent of using the senator's franking privileges to send German literature through the mail without ever paying postage.
Money is always a problem in espionage campaigns, and Viereck's was no different.
Although he was being handsomely paid for his services by the German government, the expense of importing propaganda materials past the censors was daunting.

Rafael Trujillo
It is reported that Viereck received additional funds from the fascist and pro-German dictator Rafael Trujillo of the Dominican Republic.
But, eventually, Viereck brought off the brilliant plan of using the government of the United States to do his propagandising for him.
He paid Senator Lundeen thousands of dollars at a time for the privilege of writing his speeches for him, speeches which were delivered in the Senate and printed in the Congressional Record.
Eventually, Viereck was arrested, tried, and convicted, and managed to serve only about a year or so in prison before having his sentence reduced; but his effectiveness as a German agent was thereby diminished.
What is not known is the extent to which Crowley would have been able to provide information on Viereck to British Intelligence, or if he could have been used to infiltrate Viereck's circle in New York City.
Quite possibly Crowley's cover had been "blown" by this time: that is, perhaps he really was working for American and British intelligence services during the Great War, as he claimed.
In a written defence of his actions, published in 1929, Crowley insisted that as soon as America entered the war in 1917, the U.S. Department of Justice employed him as an agent-in-place at his Fatherland and International editorial offices.
To British Intelligence, however, Crowley was officially just 'a small-time traitor' who had no connection with any British Government intelligence or counter-intelligence operation taking place in America - or anywhere else.
But the fact that they even had an opinion to express indicates that someone in British Intelligence was keeping an eye on Crowley, as indeed they were.
In 1916, apprised of his pro-German propaganda effort in New York, agents of the London Police raided OTO headquarters and confiscated Temple paraphernalia.
Whether this was for the purpose of conducting an actual investigation into possible criminal activity or simply as a means of retaliation against Crowley, is not known.

Leah Hirsig
But this would not be the last time Crowley would come to the attention of the Intelligence services.
Appropriately enough, during his tenure as editor of both 'The Fatherland' and 'The International' Crowley's romantic interests revolved around several German women in New York.

Pierre Bernard
Perhaps the most famous to Crowley enthusiasts was the ghostly Leah Hirsig, the younger sister of the Swiss-German Alma Hirsig, who had attended one of Crowley's lectures on occultism in 1918 (and who would later become involved with Pierre Bernard, the founder of the Oom the Omnipotent love-cult).
She eventually moved in with Crowley in his Greenwich Village studio and became his "Scarlet Woman" (a reference to the consort of the Great Beast of the Apocalypse and a title Crowley used for many of his female lovers). Leah eventually became pregnant and bore a child - Anne Leah - in February of 1920.
Shortly thereafter, Crowley decided to set up an occult community in Italy, on the island of Sicily and near the village of Cefalu.
This was to become the famous Abbey of Thelema, the object of so much attention by the world press and, eventually, by the government of Benito Mussolini.


While Crowley was writing German propaganda in New York, some of his colleagues in the German and British OTO lodges and the Golden Dawn were employed in actual military work.
His former brother-in-law and fellow Golden Dawn initiate, Gerald Kelly, was working as a British secret agent in Spain.

 Iron Cross
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Karl Germer
Karl Germer (whom we will meet at the great convocation of occult leaders in Thuringia in 1925) was probably a spy for the German secret service during the Great War, and was awarded the Iron Cross, First and Second class (as was, it will be remembered, Adolf Hitler, except that Germer entered the army as an officer while Hitler was an enlisted man).
Was Crowley, therefore, supplying information on Germer's activities to the British and American intelligence agencies ?
If so, that would seem to exonerate him of any claims of treason by his government, but it would also seem to make him a traitor to his own Order.
Did Germer ever discover the extent to which Crowley might have been spying on him for the British ?
Or was there a "gentleman's agreement" between the two magicians that enabled them to act as "double agents" against each other without anyone doing the other any real harm?

Theodor Reuss
Theodor Reuss - Kellner's successor as head of the Order when the latter died in 1905 'in mysterious circumstances' - was also a member of the German secret service, but not during World War I.
During the height of that war he can be found living at the Ascona vegetarian community at Monte Verita in the Ticino province of Switzerland (where we found Franz Hartmann almost thirty years earlier), and which then became the headquarters of the OTO for a while.

Karl Marx
Years previously, however, Reuss had infiltrated the fledgling Socialist movement in England, where he spied on the family of Karl Marx for German Intelligence.
He did this in the guise of an admirer of Marxism, and most of his intended victims were actually emigre Germans living in London.
This would have been in the years immediately preceding the founding of the OTO by Kellner, which was supposed to have taken place in 1895.

Moina Bergson
By that time, Mathers - co-founder of the Golden Dawn - had already moved to Paris with his wife, Moina Bergson, sister of the famous philosopher and onetime president of the Society for Psychical Research, Henry Bergson (1859-1941).

Luminous Lodge
(Vril Society)
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
From about this time until Mathers's death in 1918, there is a lot of speculation about the involvement of the Golden Dawn with everything weird and Continental from the Edelweiss Society (an anti-Semitic front group operating out of Sweden) to an occult group supposedly organized around Karl Haushofer and called Luminous Lodge, an organization founded by a follower of Liebenfels which promoted Thulist ideology in pre-Anschluss Austria).
While the Golden Dawn certainly had the English-speaking world covered - with lodges from England to America to New Zealand - there is very little evidence for genuine Golden Dawn activity taking place anywhere else, with the exception of whatever Mathers was up to in Paris.
After Mathers's death he would have been unable to continue strategizing with German and Scandinavian occult groups, at least on the physical plane.

Edelweiss Society
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
The Edelweiss Society was at its heyday in the 1920s along with the Luminous Lodge.
While it would have been physically possible for Haushofer to have met Mathers when both were living on the Continent at the same time, there would have been no earthly reason to do so.
Mathers was an impoverished occultist living in France; Haushofer, a respected professor of geopolitics at the University of Munich.

Karl Haushofer
The likelihood of their having met on common ground is virtually nil.
While there is evidence that Haushofer was interested in astrology and related forms of mysticism, Mathers was not selling horoscopes or doing the medium circuit, unlike people such as Hanussen.
If there was any connection at all between Mathers and the Golden Dawn on one side and German occult lodges on the other, it would have been through either Hartmann or Crowley and there we have the two, verifiable links.

Dr. Gregor Schwartz-Bostunitsch
However, once the National Socialists began to crack down on the occult groups operating in Germany and the occupied territories, the Golden Dawn - under the German version of its name, Hermetische Orden der Goldene Diimmerung - was included on the list, along with Crowley's A...A... and Reuss's OTO.
The Occult Reich was nothing if not thorough; thorough ... and paranoid.
The list of banned societies was probably compiled by one Dr. Gregor Schwartz-Bostunitsch, a self-proclaimed authority on occult societies who entertained a consuming hatred for Freemasonry, Theosophy, and Anthroposophy, and who once counted a youthful Adolf Eichmann among his pupils.


Established at the Abbey of Thelema at Cefalu, Sicily, after the war in the spring of 1920, Crowley found himself chronically short of funds and made several trips to Paris and London in an attempt to raise money and gather disciples for his commune.

Betty May
Raoul Loveday
One of these disciples was the unfortunate Raoul Loveday, whose botching of an occult ritual (it is said) resulted in his tragic death.
It was this incident involving Loveday - an Oxford undergraduate, who arrived at Cefalu accompanied by his friend Betty May - that eventually closed down the abbey.
Ms. May, appalled at the degenerate goings-on and general squalor of the abbey, and distressed at the death of her friend, returned to England after the occult funeral and told some rather hair-raising stories to the London papers.
The resulting furore in England soon spread to Italy, and the Fascists decided to deport Crowley.
He left Cefalu in May, 1923, never to return.
(His followers stayed behind for a while, but they eventually abandoned the abbey and it fell into general oblivion until a visit one day by filmmaker Kenneth Anger many years later.)
Crowley wound up in North Africa with Leah, wondering what to do next.
Their daughter had died shortly after their arrival in Cefalu in 1920, the second of Crowley's children (both daughters) to have died young.
Heinrich Tranker
In the summer of 1925 the acting head of the OTO - one Heinrich Tranker - invited Crowley to Germany to decide the fate of the Order; that is, Tranker (who had initially opposed Reuss's decision to have Crowley succeed him as OHO) had had a vision in which he saw Crowley as the new head of the Order.
Most of the German initiates had opposed Crowley on at least two grounds: the imposition of his personality and personal religion on the rituals and general philosophy of the Order, and the fact that he was an Englishman and not a German like themselves.
While there is no evidence to suggest that the OTO was a völkisch or Pan-German or neo-Teutonic society, this was still Germany, after all, and Germany in the grip of a political fever with Hitler out of jail and 'Mein Kampf' on the best-seller lists.

Karl Germer
("Frater Uranus")
Yet, OTO initiate Karl Germer ("Frater Uranus") was prevailed upon to provide the funds necessary to transport Crowley to Germany from France, where he had been staying with a small group of disciples, and the Great Beast himself arrived in Thuringia in June of 1925 for the conference that would decide the fate of the Order.
Unfortunately, Crowley had sent a copy of 'The Book of the Law' ahead of him for the chiefs to digest.
It was quickly translated into German by one Max Schneider and all was more or less acceptable until the infamous third chapter, which contains the diatribe against Christianity, Judaism, etc. aforementioned.
At this point, there was a flap among the chiefs and even Herr Tranker of the mystical vision demurred.

Heinrich Tranker was a Leipzig bookseller specializing in occult works, who had his own occult imprint in the pre-World War I days.
Also attending the conference were two Theosophists, Otto Gebhardi and the elderly Marthe Kuntzel, as well as Germer, Eugene Grosche, two others (members of Crowley's entourage), and Crowley himself.
It was held in the small town of Weida, near Gera, which was then evidently the headquarters of the OTO with Tranker as its acting head, or OHO.
After several days of politicking, although Tranker came around to seeing 'The Book of the Law' in a slightly more favorable light, he still wound up opposing Crowley's stewardship of the Order.

Brotherhood of Saturn
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Eugene Grosche ("Frater Saturnus"), accepted Crowley as an important occult teacher but not as the OHO.
It was left to Karl Germer to accept Crowley completely and unconditionally, and thereby the OTO split into three warring factions: the largely German, anti-Crowley group under Tranker, the new Brotherhood of Saturn under Eugene Grosche, and the OTO under Crowley, with Germer as his financial sponsor and devoted disciple.
Tranker's OTO was concerned with working the sex-magic degrees as created and refined by Kellner and Reuss without, however, having to accept either the Law of Thelema or Aleister Crowley as the occult messiah.
Crowley, it should be emphasized, was the perfectly legitimate head of the OTO for Great Britain and the English-speaking peoples, anointed as such by Reuss.
The question of whether or not Crowley was actually the head of the entire Order is a debatable one, since Crowley claims that Reuss appointed him as his successor.
If that were true, however, why then the conference in Thuringia ?
It seems there was at least some room to debate Crowley's position as international OHO, and Tranker - who had the vision that Crowley should be the head - reneged and removed his support during the conference.
As Tranker was acting head of the Order, it can be assumed that he held such position legally and with the approval - not only of the other members - but of Crowley himself, if only up until the Weida Conference when the OTO began to splinter in typical occult fashion.
Although Crowley, for all practical intents and purposes, lost the bulk of his German constituency, he left Thuringia with some new friends, among them Karl Germer, who would become OHO upon Crowley's death, and Marthe Kuntzel who accepted the Law of Thelema and its Bible, 'The Book of the Law'.

Röhm - Night of the Long Knives
It would be Ms. Kuntzel who would wind up caring for some of the fallout from Crowley's rituals, in the persons of Leah Hirsig and her new companion Norman Mudd, at Kuntzel's residence in Germany, until Leah returned to the States and Mudd committed suicide in the waters of the English Channel in June, 1934, coincidentally at the time of the Röhm Purge taking place in Germany.
Gestapo Warrant Disk
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

And it would be Ms. Kuntzel who, full of approval not only for Crowley but for another occult messiah, would claim that Adolf Hitler's views were virtually identical with those found in the 'The Book of the Law'.
Kuntzel, interrogated by the Gestapo because of her connections to Theosophists, Thelemites, and Freemasons galore, remained a devoted National Socialist, and a devoted follower of Crowley to her dying day.
It is interesting that she found no conflict of interest between the two.
Karl Germer would even claim that the Führer was, quite probably, Crowley's Magickal Son.
Of the third group to leave Thuringia that summer, we may say a little more than has been mentioned elsewhere, for Eugene Grosche's Brotherhood of Saturn also managed to survive the war and to continue its own version of the sex-magic that was taught in the secret councils of the Ordo Templi Orientis.

Astrological Magic
system took the rather Masonic outlines of the OTO a step further and created a whole system of sex-magic based on astrology.
This was not a horoscope magazine approach to selecting one's spouse based on sun signs, but rather a complex method of determining sexual positions and partners according to the purpose of the ritual and the actual location of the planets as determined by reference to a common ephemeris and table of houses.
For the curious, the most important astrological aspect (according to this cult) is the square; that is, when two planets are ninety degrees apart on the ecliptic as viewed from the earth.
This is supposedly an aspect of great tension between the planets, and those planets specifically related to sexuality (Venus, Mars, Neptune, and the Moon according to the Brotherhood) are particularly powerful for this type of working.
All heterosexual and homosexual couplings have been accounted for in this system, as well as the specific positions to be used according to either the natal horoscopes of the individuals involved or actual transits, or both. Conjunctions of the planets were also considered appropriate, but the squares seemed to dominate the sex-magic practices of this group.
While it would take too much space to discuss the theory behind all of this and would perhaps bore the reader not willing to wade through some of the rather surreal jargon of the modern occult movement, suffice it to say that the square aspect was believed to represent a gate, open into the hidden dimensions.

Völkisch Art - Sex and Power
Josef Thorak
In general Western astrology, a square is often considered an unlucky or "hard" aspect: one that represents obstacles to success or illness, accidents, losses of various types.
The magicians of the Brotherhood of Saturn saw it, therefore, as a gate opening upon this world from the domain of daemons; and daemons were thought to be nothing more than powerful forces which - to the uninitiated - appeared fearsome and evil but which the initiate (with proper training and discipline) could tame to more productive ends.
This mystification of the sex act among the German occult lodges was perfectly consistent with later National Socialist fashions regarding sex and power.
The Völkisch ideal is to transform sexual energy into a "spiritual" force, for the benefit of the community.
The erotic (that is, women) is always present as a temptation, with the most admirable response being a heroic repression of the sexual impulse.... Völkisch aesthetics is based on the containment of vital forces; movements and emotions are confined, held tight, held in.

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Führer und Reichskanzler
Adolf Hitler
While no one would accuse Crowley of repressing his sexual impulses, the transformation of sexual energy into a spiritual force was - and remains - the goal of the Ordo Templi Orientis, and the other German sex-magic lodges, as it was a personal practice of Hitler himself.

'The  True Will'
The vital force was worshipped as tantamount to magical power and - with the precise instructions of Eugene Grosche and others for the timing of the moment of orgasm to coincide with the passage of some star or planet over a hypothetical point in space - we can say that this vital force was restricted in its flow, subject to the conscious direction (the True Will) of the magician.
Like the Völkisch art that Sontag brilliantly describes, the German art of sex-magic is also "both prurient and idealizing."
While the Office of the Holy Inquisition used guilt by association to equate sexuality with the practice of witchcraft and devil worship (because sexuality was already considered base and animalistic by the Church) and thereby confirmed the evil of lust as a creature of Satan, the German lodges acknowledged this relationship of sex with darkness, sex with demonic forces, but cynically manipulated it toward various personal ends.
One might reasonably agree that the National Socialist ideal was to sublimate the sexual urge for the "benefit of the community" as Sontag has pointed out.

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The great sex magicians - Crowley, Germer, and Reuss - were enthusiastically involved in all three pursuits at various times of their lives.
All had worked for Germany's benefit, even though Crowley insisted that he worked as a spy for the U.S. Department of Justice, and would later work for MI5.
All were leaders of the Ordo Templi Orientis, a German sex-magic occult lodge.
And when, in 1922, Theodor Reuss suffered a stroke and had to step down as OHO of the Order, it was Crowley - fellow spy and sex magician - who rushed in to fill the space.
And when Crowley died, it was Germer (veteran secret agent) who took over as OHO.
Crowley has claimed that Reuss appointed him his successor as OHO of the Order, but that ignores the tremendous flap that took place when a German translation of 'The Book of the Law' was made available to lodge members in Germany.
It can honestly be said that most OTO members in Germany at that time disapproved of Crowley's taking over the OTO.
They objected to the way he rewrote their rituals to deify himself, and to enshrine his new religion of Thelema in their lodge work.
Many initiates defected ... or, it can be said, the Crowley faction defected from the original OTO organization.
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013