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::: Magickal Origins of the Men in Black :::

To: alt.alien.visitors,alt.paranet.ufo,alt.alien.research,alt.mythology,alt.magick.tyagi
From: (Blue Resonant Human)
Subject: ::: Magickal Origins of the Men in Black :::
Date: Sat, 14 Jun 1997 18:35:26 GMT

The Men in Black and their Magical Origins
"...we are dealing with a full-size world-mystery and a real 
fight between the Black and White Brotherhoods."

- Frater Achad, 1948

Throughout medieval times, a major current of thought distinct 
from official religion existed, culminating in the works of the 
alchemists and hermetics.  Among such groups were to be found 
some of the early modern scientists and men remarkable for the 
strength of their independent thinking and their adventurous 
life, such as Paracelsus.  The nature of the beings who 
mysteriously appeared, dressed in shiny garments or covered with 
dark hair, and with whom communication was so hard to establish 
intrigued these men intensely."  

- Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia

In 1947 the CIA was organized and the first UFO cases burst upon 
the American media landscape as "flying saucers."  In that year, 
also, the first modern visitation by the infamous Men in Black 
took place in which a witness, one Harold Dahl, was silenced.  
From that point on, a pattern began to emerge.

The Men In Black legend is perennial; that it shows up in 
connection with the UFO lore should come as no surprise.  
UFOlogy bizarro chronicler John Keel (_Disneyland of the Gods_, 
_Jadoo_, etc.) observed in his _UFOs: Operation Trojan Horse: "
The records of demonology are filled with striking parallels ...
the general descriptions of the vampires themselves are 
identical to the 'men in black.'  The dark skin and angular, 
Oriental-like faces were commonly reported ..."

_The Autobiography of Malcolm X_ described Malcolm's encounter 
with an MIB in prison: "He had on a dark suit I remember.  I 
could see him as plainly as I see anyone I look at.  He wasn't 
black, and he wasn't white.  He was light-brown skinned, an 
Asiatic cast of countenance, and he had oily black hair..."  It 
is interesting that the celebrated film _Malcolm X_ chooses to 
imply that this figure was Nation of Islam leader Elijah 
Mohammed.  While Elijah Mohammed and his mysterious teacher 
Wallace Fard (who vanished without a trace) had come out of High 
Degree Prince Hall Freemasonry, and certainly knew some of the 
esoteric secrets, the being Malcolm X described is more in 
accord with Aleister Crowley's description of the praterhuman 
intelligence Aiwass than of Elijah Mohammed.

"In the shadows, the Men in Black had long lurked, biding their 
 time, waiting.  Here and there, now and then, some people 
 thought they had seen them, but they weren't quite certain; 
 perhaps they more sense than actually regarded them...

"Fourteen years earlier, the shadowy visitors had shown 
 themselves openly.  Then they had descended upon flying saucer 
 buffs, threatening and terrorizing them, hushing them up...

"Al K. Bender, a UFO researcher, had been the first known 
 victim ...he performed a certain experiment and the lurking 
 horror came.  It began with glowing blue lights.  Then came the 
 stranger with the luminous eyes in the darkened theatre, and 
 later on a dusky street.  It culminated when the Men in Black, 
 three of them, paid him a visit ...."

- Gray Barker, _The Silver Bridge_

UFOlogist Gray Barker got his one and only best-selling book in 
detailing the Albert K. Bender story and the world-wide wave of 
silencings.  _They Knew Too Much about the Flying Saucers_ was 
an international success.  It was widely assumed that the Men in 
Black were either government agents or extraterrestrials, but as 
researchers Wilgus and Keel have shown, the eye in the triangle 
was sometimes their only insignia, while my own research showed 
startling parallels to certain black magick rituals in medieval 
times which provoked visitations by what was often called "the 
Man in Black" -- widely understood to be the Devil himself.  
Even Barker noted that Albert K. Bender's experiments were more 
like a magical conjuration than an attempt at extraterrestrial 
communication.  Any initiated magician reading Bender's accounts 
would recognize the elements of magical conjuration immediately.

Maybe, I mused, we were dealing more with magick than with 

::: The Black Lodge :::

"Mathers, of course, carried on; but he had fallen.  The Secret 
 Chiefs cast him off; he fell into deplorable abjection, even his 
 scholarship deserted him.  He published nothing new and lived in 
 sodden intoxication till death put an end to his long misery.  
 He was a great man in his way..."

- Aleister Crowley

"What I am out to complain of is what I seriously believe to be 
an organized conspiracy of the Black Lodges to prevent people 
from thinking..."

- Aleister Crowley, _Magick Without Tears_

Often when a person or institution allied with the historical 
Great White Brotherhood approaches success (variously defined) 
or comes into possession of certain aspects of transcendent 
wisdom, Something Intervenes.  That something has been defined 
as the Man in Black, the Men In Black, the black lodges, or The 
Black Lodge.  The latter term most nearly accommodates my own 
view.  That they need to do this, and that they often fail in 
their efforts, is itself an indication that (A) the Black Lodge 
is opposed by Something Else, equally as strong, and (B) they 
are afraid of something we might find out -- about them, about 
their opposition, about ourselves or all three.

The story of our interaction with the UFOnauts begins with the 
Qabalistic Tree of Life, and the Chakra system of the body.

According to the primal occult and frequently secret and 
subversive view, the manifest universe emerges from an Ultimate 
NOT-Thing, a Consciousness or Beingness beyond words or 
expressions sometimes referred to as the Unmanifest or The 
Limitless Light.  This Unmanifest cannot be understood in the 
external sense, but can be Known in the Gnostic sense by the 
initiate or perfected sentient being, the Ubermensch.  It can 
be plugged into.

For reasons equally inexpressible, this uniqueness unfolds 
itself in manifestation.  Thus, the limitless light becomes 
a series of emanations or expressions or Intelligences that 
devolve increasingly toward our material form of existence and 
thus towards accessibility in the conventional sense.  But the 
manifestations also increasingly become subject to subdivision 
into arbitrary concepts such as "good" and "evil" as these are 
commonly understood.  And they also become closer and closer 
in form and content to our own mundane reality, though in the 
relativity of things, these Higher Intelligences may seem 
unspeakably powerful, mythic and divine.

The Gnostic view has tended to be that what the external world 
of the conventional person understands as god, devil demon, 
angel or, more recently, extraterrestrial beings are, in fact, 
such emanations of the unspeakable ultimate.  Indeed, the 
ancient Gnostics saw the 'god' and 'devil' of conventional 
theology as an ego-maddened entity under the delusion that it, 
indeed, IS the Ultimate Being!  The late Phil Dick, in his last 
Gnostic allegorical fiction, eventually settled on the name 
"V.A.L.I.S." or "Vast Active Living intelligence System" for 
this being or Demiurge.  He wrestled through his literary career 
and secret life as a Christian Gnostic philosopher with whether 
VALIS was a benevolent, if machine-like deity of a sort, or an 
insane extraterrestrial supercomputer.

Throughout recorded history, and, from the evidence of primitive 
objects and works of art, for aeons before, certain humans have 
had the capacity to tune into or channel various of these Higher 
Intelligences with varying degrees of accuracy.  These humans 
have been our Seers, Oracles and Prophets.  It appears, in fact, 
that much of the source-material of all religions comes from 
such channelings, including, arguably, _The Book of Revelation_, 
_The Book of Mormon_, and _The Book of the Law_.

Concurrently, and not coincidentally, the two great initiatory 
bodies, or orders have been generated and regenerated throughout 
history.  The so-called Great White Brotherhood, when undistorted, 
appears (according to legend) guided by Intelligences associated 
with the dual star system Sirius or Sothis in some manner [see 
_The Sirius Mystery_ by Robert Temple for a discussion of the 
Sirius connection -- also Kenneth Grant's _Outside the Circles 
of Time_ discusses the matter from a magical perspective].  This 
brotherhood also seems to have the purpose of uplifting human 
character and initiating biological and social evolution designed 
to move towards identification with Ultimate Being.  What is 
sometimes called "the Black Lodge," which we may associate with 
the Gnostic Demiurge or Phil Dick's VALIS, is generated to keep 
humanity in a state of materialist trance and evolutionary 

Mystics generally consider that understanding the motivations of 
either of these Sources may be beyond our knowledge or even our 
capabilities.  Existentially, however, it may be stated with 
confidence that one is dedicated to keep us in subjugation, 
misery and stagnation; the other to our betterment and 
enrichment though both at times have made claims to being our 

There are keys for decoding which is which -- for example, 
rituals that have been generated or handed down to the magical 
lodges of modern times which refer to a star or the stars 
directly or indirectly tend to be transformative and thus of the 
Great White Brotherhood.  Ciphers for decoding messages between 
the black lodges and their alien sponsors have always existed.  
But confusions of a deliberate nature exist; the ancient 
Gnostics uncovered a cipher which clearly indicates that the 
story of the Garden of Eden in its conventional form is turned 
on its head.  The Serpent is clearly the symbol of Knowledge, 
Wisdom, the Kundalini Yogic force, the Will-current -- that is, 
it is the symbol of Liberation and Self-Mastery.  The jealous 
"gods," as read in the original manuscripts, are clearly the 
forces of blockage, self-denial and repression -- which is to 
say, the Intelligences governing the Black Lodge.  This 
Knowledge of Good and Evil and Life and Death has been the 
Terrible Secret of Initiates throughout history, recorded in 
ciphers and myths, and passed on through ritual.

The Black Lodge may be defined as the organized institution 
guided by VALIS for the purpose of holding back human evolution 
and keeping a slave mentality in place.  Its human leaders are 
the "black brothers" who are not to be mistaken for mere black 
magicians.  Indeed, Aleister Crowley observed that "the 'Black 
Magician' or Sorcerer is hardly even a distant cousin of the '
Black Brother.'  The difference between a sneak-thief and a 
Hitler is not too bad an analogy..."  The Black Brothers are 
highly advanced adepts of the Art who have simply, as the popular 
phrase goes, "been seduced by the dark side of the Force."  At 
certain times and places in history -- for example, medieval 
Tibet or, in more modern times, Nazi Germany -- the Black Lodge 
has operated more or less openly with characteristic occult 
symbols of human skulls, lightning bolts, etc.  out in the open.  
But like the Great White Brotherhood that it actively seeks to 
subvert and overthrow (as it did in the time of the Knights 
Templar), the Black Lodge has generally communicated by cipher 
and myth, in silence and secrecy, often within religious, 
fraternal and political institutions dedicated to the status quo.

In the West since at least the early 18th century, the Black 
Lodge has tended to operate along crypto-Masonic lines, and its 
development has tended to coincide with and mirror that of the 
Great White Brotherhood.  This development may, in fact, be 
attributed to a cosmic principle of "equal generation of forces."
Thus, the birth of the modern form, as the fraternity of the 
knights militant of the New Aeon in the cultural and political 
turbulence of Germany in the 1890s, may fairly (along with the 
coincident peak in the development of the Hermetic Order of the 
Golden Dawn and the Universal Gnostic Church) be characterized 
as the resurgence of the Great White Brotherhood and its 
rejuvenation out of the degeneration of classical speculative 
freemasonry.  This coincides closely with the "Great Airship 
Scare" of 1897.

At almost the same moment, and in the same unhappy land, the 
Black Lodge reasserted itself in the form of such fraternities 
as the Vril Society and the Thule Group.  The full story of the 
Vril Society, the Thule Group, the Ahnenerbe, the Schwartze 
Orden (The Black Order) and other manifestations of the Black 
Lodge in the pre-Nazi and Nazi era has yet to be told, though 
Pauwels and Bergier take an informal stab at it in _The Morning 
of the Magicians_.  Rudolph Hess, the last known member of the 
Thule Group, told Jack Fishman (_The Seven Men of Spandau_) that 
Thule leader and occult initiate General Karl Haushofer (1869-194
6) "was the magician, the secret Master..." of Nazi Germany.  
Hess believed in the cause to the end of his life.  The last 
prisoner at Spandau, Hess died at the significant age of 93, 
proclaiming his loyalty to the Thule ideal to the very end.  The 
period, in the middle 1930s, in which these groups attained 
their greatest, ruinous power over the German state coincides 
closely with the reports of "ghost rockets" over Northern Europe.

The British Raj in India, and the European Christian 
colonization of the East in general, had all but destroyed the 
classical Tantrism and Illuminism of the Great White Brotherhood 
in the East, finding such institutions as Temple Prostitution, 
chakra-puji, Shiva devotion, etc.  to be sexual obscenity.  On 
the other hand, fearing the power of the Black Lodge as a 
political entity and eroding its hold on esoteric Eastern 
Religion as a practical necessity had provoked the British to 
effectively dismantle the classical Eastern manifestation of the 
Black Lodge, and Western occultists visiting the East in the 19
th and early 20th century already could only find watered-down 
remnants and secret adepts carrying on the hidden wisdom in 
either form.  The Great White Brotherhood survived in Tibet 
along with the Dark Lodges, and, since the Chinese occupation, 
many of its chiefs have found their way to India and around the 

As far as is known, the last classical chakra-puj to be observed 
by a Westerner was in the 1930s, while the last ancient intact 
body of adepts of the Eastern Black Lodge, ironically dedicated 
to foisting upon sleeping humanity a rank and demoralizing 
materialism, was discovered and destroyed in accordance with the 
insipid Marxism which guided the Chinese "People's" Liberation 
Army into Tibet in the late 1950s.  Among various Tantric Buddhist 
and Bon religious institutions, the P.L.A. liquidated the cavern 
retreats of Schamballah and Agarthi, the former being possibly the 
oldest surviving branch of the Black Lodge on the planet.  (See 
Ossendovski's _Men, Beasts and Gods_, circa 1925, for an account 
of Schamballah and Agarthi.)  As survivors of the Marxist massacre 
from the Tibetan Great White Brotherhood are known to have come to 
the West in subsequent years, it may be assumed that survivors of 
the Black Lodge have set up operations in our own society as well.  
We can see the marks of their presence in so-called right-handed 
Eastern circles that have gained a certain currency among 
Westerners, and which peddle a useless baggage of New Age 

The traditions do survive here and there in the East; a friend 
of mine -- for 10 years a high official of the International 
Society for Krishna Consciousness in India -- was seduced by a 
Black Tantric Magician, and wound up leaving a life of celibacy 
as a Hari Krishna for the lurid existence of a Madame in an 
upscale American house of prostitution.  I leave it to my 
readers to decide whether she was seduced from the Great 
Brotherhood to the Black Lodge, or vice versa.

Certainly, prior to the destruction of the Tibetan black lodges, 
the German SS -- under Thule and Vril influence and directed by 
the infamous Ahnenerbe Group -- imported a number of Black 
Brothers and Adepts from Tibet during and prior to the Second 
World War.  The Tibetan colony in Berlin in fact predates the 
Nazi rise to power, having been established in 1926.  One 
Tibetan Monk, termed "the man with the green gloves" and a 
reputed psychic, was frequently visited by Hitler and was 
rumored to hold the keys to the Kingdom of Agarthi.  Such keys 
are best understood in terms of ciphers.

Western mystics including Karl Kellner, P.B. Randolph and G.I.  
Gurdjieff received instruction from surviving institutions 
of the Great White Brotherhood and carried their influence back 
with them to Europe, just as the Templars had done centuries 
before, and incorporated their teachings into the Western 
Esoteric System.

It is known that the Black Lodge -- which, as it opposes 
evolution, inherently fights a rear-guard action -- has made 
unceasing war on the Great White Brotherhood in the West from 
the beginnings of the magical revival.  Indeed, fallen and 
failed adepts of the Great White Brotherhood have become the 
tools and pawns of the Black Lodge, from Mathers to Hubbard and 
beyond.  It would seem that the immediate goal of the Black 
Brothers is to delay the Manifestation of the New Aeon, the 
birth of the magical child and the realization of the ubermensch 
through diversion of the Will-current into less than useless 
power plays, demoralizing materialist and superstitious 
delusions, New Age jargon, etc.  The classic example in the 
Twentieth Century was the Nazi appropriation, under Black Lodge 
influence, of the very concept of the ubermensch, and 
sidetracking it into a pathetic racialist caricature of 
Nietzsche's super being.

"We should found society upon a caste of 'men of earth,' sons of 
the soil ..." said Crowley, "The worst thing they can do is what 
is done in America, to disenchant the man of earth with his 
destiny; to fill him with the facts and fancies that enthrall 
etiolated and degenerated idealists and unfit him for his 
evident purpose, that of supplying society with supermen."  The 
Black Lodge in the Nazi era totally discredited the concept of 
the evolved human supermen by grafting it onto German 
nationalist and racialist conceits, while suppressing the 
Gnostic Church, the OTO, the Anthroposophical Society and even 
lost-word freemasonry -- in short, anyone who might have an 
actual understanding of the coming Being.  The leading figure of 
the OTO in Germany, the future Grand Master Karl Germer, was 
placed in a concentration camp.  His official crime was that he 
knew and maintained relations with Aleister Crowley.  The Chief 
Bishop of the Universal Gnostic Church in France was executed by 
the Nazis.  Crowley, for his part, "on the outbreak of the War ..
.was invited to see the Director of British Naval Intelligence." 
According to Gerald Suster, "Crowley claimed that he advocated 
the use of two magical signs which were to boost British morale 
and frequently used by Winston Churchill: the 'V' sign, which, 
in magical terms, is the counter of the Swastika; and the '
Thumbs Up,' the Sign of the Phallus and Victory, which was 
published in a pamphlet of Crowley poetry during the most 
desperate days of 1940 and whose use spread throughout the 
nation."  War of the magicians, indeed!

I believe the New Age distortion of the New Aeon concept is a 
direct attempt by the Black Lodge and its Inner Planes Rulers 
(which we call, for convenience VALIS) to delay manifestation of 
the Aeon by creating confusion among the receptive.  Much of the 
"White Light Channeling" clearly bears the stamp of the Black 
Lodge and VALIS, an empty metaphysical blind of insipid psychic 
trivia.  Many self-improvement groups have their origins in the 
ideas of failed magicians like L. Ron Hubbard.  We have new age 
centers that teach nothing useful, UFO message-oriented cults 
waving flashlights on mountains, and, as I have shown 
end-of-the-world doomsayers touting this or that grand cosmic 
alignment, harmonic convergence or polar shift.

The UFO cults have clearly influenced even Kenneth Grant's 
so-called "Typhonian OTO," which appears to use valid magical 
currents to pursue the hideous old ones of H.P. Lovecraft's 
fictional Cthulhu Mythos.  Phil Dick's last efforts were marred 
by insipid trivial UFO cult channelings -- the kind of stuff 
that was old hat to hardened UFOlogists by the late 1950s.  
Compare Phil Dick's musings in _The Last Testament_ with, for 
example, the Mark Prophet or Dick Miller or Gloria Lee Bird 
materials of UFO contactee lore.

The magick of the Black Lodge can be defined and thus identified 
in only one way and by one set standard: the subversion of the 
True Will.  This is the essence of Black Magick, and is its only 
true definition.  Aleister Crowley explained it this way:

"The Magical Will is in its essence twofold, for it presupposes 
 a beginning and an end, to will to be a thing is to admit you 
 are not that thing.

"Hence to will anything but the supreme thing is to wander still 
 further from it -- any will but that to give up the self to the 
 beloved is black magick -- yet the surrender is so simple an act 
 that to our complex minds it is the most difficult of all acts; 
 and hence training is necessary ...

"The majority of the people in this world are ataxic; they 
 cannot coordinate their mental muscles to make a purposed 
 movement.  They have no real will, only a set of wishes, many of 
 which contradict others ...and at the end of life the movements 
 cancel out each other..."

Crowley's references to his wars with the Black Lodge are 
scattered throughout his writings and bear further study.  From 
these writings, one can come to understand that the form of the 
attack upon the magician can range from political repression to 

The great magicians, Theosophists and other Western sources have 
devoted even more testimony to the other side of the coin -- the 
"Great White Brotherhood" or "The Secret Chiefs" or "The Masters."  
In the early days of the magical revival, the existence of an 
inner order was taken for granted.  This was followed by a long 
epoch of expose, disillusionment and world weariness.  But now, 
revisionist historians are finding evidence that these groups, 
usually described in mythic terms, are as material as they are 
archetypal.  They are, in very Truth, the "Inner Order" -- in 
communication with and overlapping with Ultraterrestrial Sources.

::: The Reality of the Secret Chiefs :::

The mythology of the secret masters or chiefs and the myth of 
the black lodge form an archetypal substratum of modern magical 
lore which is almost a necessity if magick is not to drift into 
a kind of bland parapsychological secular humanism or offbeat 
psychology on the one hand, or a religious fundamentalism 
grounded in a new faith substituted for Christianity.  But one 
should at least allow that the legend of secret chiefs may have 
some rather literal basis in fact; that there are high masters 
of the art scattered around the world, that they are in 
communication with one another, and that how they use their 
illumination depends upon their character and predisposition.  
This is all that one must grant to consider the great 
brotherhood, or secret chiefs, as well as their opposition 

In medieval Tibet, this was known as the "whispered succession." 
It is an open part of the literature of Tantric Yoga, and the 
often-invoked Tibetan connection of adepts and publicists comes 
quickly to mind.  It was the Hidden Church of Karl von 
Eckartshausen that brought Aleister Crowley to the path, and 
small wonder; von Eckartshausen wrote in the 18th century of 

"...the society of the Elect, which has continued from the first 
 day of creation to the present time; its members, it is true, 
 are scattered all over the world, but they have always been 
 united in the spirit and in one truth ...

"It is from her that all truths penetrate into the world, she is 
 the School of the Prophets, and of all who search for wisdom, 
 and it is in this community alone that truth and the explanation 
 of all mystery is to be found.  It is the most hidden of 
 communities yet possesses members from many circles; of such is 
 this School ...From all time, therefore, there has been a hidden 
 assembly, a society of the Elect, of those who sought for and 
 had capacity for light, and this interior society was called the 
 interior Sanctuary or Church."  

In medieval European graal mythology, we find a strain of 
accomplished Graal Templars going out in secret to govern and 
protect far-flung populations, but (as in von Eschenbach's 
Parzival), "...writing was seen on the Gral to the effect that 
any Templar whom God should bestow on a distant people for their 
lord must forbid them to ask his name or lineage, but must help 
them gain their rights ...members of the Gral Company are now 
forever averse to questioning, they do not wish to be asked 
about themselves..."

As magical mythologist Aleister Crowley has a wonderful time 
with both friend and foe in the fictional _Moonchild_, but his 
nonfictional recounting of the same period comes uncomfortably 
close to the metaphor of the war between the Great White 
Brotherhood and the Black Lodge.  Then we find the matter of 
fact (if remarkable) essay on sexual magick, "Energized 
Enthusiasm," interrupted, as it were, in midcourse by an 
anecdotal accounting worthy of _Moonchild_.

"Thus far had I written when the distinguished poet, whose 
conversation with me upon the Mysteries had incited me to jot 
down these few rough notes, knocked at my door ...'If you come 
with me now, we will finish your essay.'  Glad enough of any 
excuse to stop working, the more plausible the better, I 
hastened to take down my coat and hat.  'By the way,' he 
remarked in the automobile, 'I take it that you do not mind 
giving me the Word of Rose Croix.'  I exchanged the secrets of 
I.N.R.I. with him..."

What followed was an account of a close encounter of a Most 
Peculiar Kind, best read in the original.

Crowley, ever both rationalist and mystic, was aware of the 
superficial difficulties in the idea of secret chiefs.  Yet 
he tended to be rather unambiguous on this matter.

"Yes; this involves a theory of the powers of the Secret Chiefs 
 so romantic and unreasonable that it seems hardly worth a smile 
 of contempt...I propose to quote it here in order to show that 
 the most ordinary events, apparently disconnected, are in fact 
 only intelligible by postulating some such people as the Secret 

He remarks in this manner in his autobiography, but is still 
quite convinced 20 or so years later when he notes, in _Magick 
Without Tears_:

"They can induce a girl to embroider a tapestry, or initiate a 
 political movement to culminate in a world-war; all in pursuit 
 of some plan wholly beyond the purview or the comprehension of 
 the deepest and subtlest thinkers...But are They men, in the 
 usual sense of the word?  They may be incarnate or discarnate: 
 it is a matter of Their convenience..."

We should take note of Paul Johnson's recent trailblazing study 
of the theosophical masters.  The essence may be boiled down to 
this: secret chiefs or hidden masters may have good reason to 
mythologize themselves, and encourage those in direct contact 
with them to follow suit on the border where magical philosophy 
meets with its political implications, the need for secrecy 
assumes a more practical rationale.  The Secret Chiefs may be 
secret not because they are myths or immortals, but because they 
are neither.

::: Do the Gods Leave Footprints?  :::

The recent revisionist histories, especially Paul Johnson's _The 
Masters_, Joscelyn Godwin's "hidden hand" articles, and our own 
work with the "ciphers of the Secret Chiefs" (identical with 
that of the UFOnauts) have begun to restore the political 
component to historical understandings of the magical revival of 
the late 19th century.

For Westerners, especially in America, the separation of Church 
and State has been sufficient to make it difficult even to think 
in terms of spirituality and political philosophy as a continuous 
sphere.  Even hardcore Bible-belters are unable to truly imagine 
an established religion in the European sense, let alone in the 
Asiatic.  I believe most of us have virtually no idea of what makes 
Islamic Republicanism tick, and we stand appalled not only at the 
atrocities of Islamic Government, but at its sheer zeal.  The idea 
of Pat Robertson driving a truck filled with explosives into an 
enemy military compound shouting "Jesus is Lord!" is ludicrous in 
our imaginations.  Put Billy Graham behind the wheel ... but you 
get the point.

Yet, it has been shown that the founders of speculative 
freemasonry in the 18th century, especially in its continental 
version, were upholders of a radical spiritual, sometimes 
republican political vision that captured the imagination of 
many, including early socialists on the one hand and occultists 
on the other.  These tendencies meet and overlap, and explain 
much about the nature of Masonic and occult secrecy, the cell 
structure common to political radicals and occultists, and the 
hostility of the established State and Church to both.

The Secret Chiefs of Theosophy, the Golden Dawn and the OTO may 
be able to, as Crowley said, "initiate a political movement to 
culminate in a world-war" (or prevent one), but if Paul Johnson's 
thesis is correct, one should not conclude from this that they 
are immune to arrest, torture and execution.  Alessandro di 
Cagliostro, almost certainly a (rather more public than would 
seem judicious) Secret Chief, was arrested and condemned by the 
Inquisition, dying in a Roman prison.

Johnson observes of some of his successors: "They were all 
committed to an international effort to combat religious 
dogmatism, extend the range of democratic government, and direct 
public attention to the values of liberty, equality and 
fraternity ...Sotheran's acquaintance with HPB began in Europe 
among the disciples of Mazzini.  Sotheran's account of 
Cagliostro makes it clear that he regarded the work of Mazzini 
and the Carbonari to be direct continuation of Cagliostro's 

Johnson's cast of characters in early Theosophical history 
overlaps with occultist-magical history considerably.  The great 
Magi Papus, P.B. Randolph and John Yarker all come under 
consideration by Johnson.

But before we inaugurate Karl Marx or Anarchist Emma Goldman as 
"Secret Chiefs," we do need to avoid losing sight of the fact 
that those who professedly encountered these hidden beings were 
apt to describe them in terms of, at the least, superbeings in 
human form.

Consider Henry Steel Olcott's account of an encounter at Lahore 
with the legendary "K.H.":

"I was sleeping in my tent, the night of the 19th, when I rushed 
 back towards external consciousness on feeling a hand laid on me.
 The camp being on the open plain, and beyond the protection of 
 the Lahore police, my first animal instinct was to protect 
 myself ...'Do you not know me?  Do you not remember me?'  It was 
 the voice of the Master K.  H.  A swift revulsion of feeling 
 came over me, I relaxed my hold on his arms, joined my palms in 
 reverential salutation, and wanted to jump out of bed to show 
 him respect.  But his hand and voice stayed me, and after a few 
 sentences had been exchanged, he took my left hand in his, 
 gathered the fingers of his right into the palm, and stood quiet 
 beside my cot, from which I could see his divinely benignant 
 face by the light of the lamp ...Presently, I could feel some 
 soft substance forming in my hand, and the next minute the 
 Master laid his kind hand on my forehead, uttered a blessing, 
 and left ...I found myself holding in my left hand a folded 
 paper enwrapped in a silken cloth..."

The letter, as it turned out, predicted the death of two enemies 
of the Theosophical Society, which swiftly came to pass.  The 
actual identity of "Master K.H." seems to be one Thakar Singh,
an enlightened radical Sikh leader, in contact with the worldwide 
network of radicals of the 19th century.  

Contrast Olcott's encounter with S.L. MacGregor Mathers' account 
of his relations with the Secret Chiefs:

"It was found absolutely and imperatively necessary that there 
 should be some eminent Member especially chosen to act as the 
 link between the Secret Chiefs and the more external forms of 
 the Order.  It was requisite that such a member should be me who,
 while having the necessary and peculiar educational basis of 
 critical and profound Occult Archaeological Knowledge, should at 
 the same time not only be ready and willing to devote himself in 
 every sense to a blind and unreasoning obedience to those Secret 

Israel Regardie described Mathers' fateful encounter in this way:

"While walking in the Bois de Bologne one day, meditating ...
 Mathers claimed triumphantly that he was approached by three men.
 He asserted that these were Adepts belonging to the hidden or 
 Secret Third Order, and therefore belonged to that category of 
 men described in The Cloud Upon the Sanctuary.  Apparently, so 
 he claims, they had materialized themselves, and in that tense 
 emotional and spiritual atmosphere of Psychical phenomena, 
 confirmed him in the sole rulership of the Order."  

Mathers observed that, for his part, "I believe they are human 
beings living on this Earth, but possessed of terrible and super-
human powers."  

As outre as these tales are, they coincide remarkably with close 
encounter accounts from as early as St.  Paul's fateful 
experience on the road to Damascus, to Albert K.  Bender's three 
Men in Black.

The most intelligent discussion of what is delusion, dishonesty 
and deception in all this, and what is not, is in Crowley's 
_Magick Without Tears_.  That it is scattered through the work 
and written under an implicit assumption that the proofs of a 
residue of concrete reality, however bizarre, are readily 
obvious to the reader is unfortunate, in today's (properly) more 
wary magical and UFOlogical circles.  All that we attempt to 
demonstrate here is that a plausible case can be made for 
historical revision at this time.  Johnson's tentative 
identification of Theosophical Masters both demythologizes them 
and adds to the credibility of their existence.  If Johnson is 
correct, the Secret Chiefs are not only real but they probably 
have phone numbers -- doubtless unlisted.

Crowley observed dryly in a postscript: "A visitor's story has 
just reminded me of the possibility that I am a Secret Chief 
myself without knowing it: for I have sometimes been recognized 
by other people as having acted as such, though I was not aware 
of the fact at the time."  

Brad Steiger observed in 1988, that, apparently, "...Space 
Beings have placed themselves in the role of messengers of God, 
or that we, in our desperation for cosmic messiahs who can 
remove us from the foul situation we have made on this planet, 
hope that there are such messengers who can extricate us from 
the plight we have brought on ourselves."  Only with the coming 
of cipher knowledge can we decode the Pretended Saviors from 
Authentic Benefactors or, better Allies.  Taking into 
consideration that UFO contactee George King and his Aetherius 
Society are earnestly engaged in the war being waged by the 
(Great White) Brotherhood against the Black Magicians, a group 
they feel seeks to enslave the human race," as Steiger puts it, 
the UFOlogy mythos and the magical mythos are shown clearly to 
be cut from the same cloth.  The nature of that cloth, in the 
hands of Crowley or King, is now no longer obscure.

Excerpt from:

Secret Cipher of the UFOnauts
1994 by Allen H. Greenfeld
ISBN 1-881532-04-6
Illuminet Press, P.O.B. 2808, Lilburn, GA 30226

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Southern Spirits: 19th and 20th century accounts of hoodoo, including slave narratives & interviews
Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by cat yronwode: an introduction to African-American rootwork
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