What A Year It’s Been!

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

I’m writing this, almost a year after my previous post, overwhelmed and happily exhausted. What a year it’s been indeed! Moving into the new 5,000 square foot space; building a whole new kitchen, dais, steps, and loads more; hosting Advanced Initiator Training; performing Minerval, I, II, III, IV, and PI within the first six months; welcoming guests from out of town; and most recently, being elevated back to Lodge status! Quite a year, indeed. Here’s some raw numbers:

Number of Gnostic Masses performed in 2015: 30
Number of Baptisms: 11
Number of Confirmations: 8
Number of initiations performed: 29
Number of classes help: 80
Local dues-paying members: 41

These numbers are incredible! Thank you all for making it such an exciting year!

You’d think we’d be resting on our laurels for 2016, but you’d be incorrect in that assumption! We have a lot of plans coming up, including visits from acclaimed Thelemic authors, more classes and lectures, opening our own book shop, and, of course, Black Sun Lodge’s 25th Anniversary!

We are also beginning a program of community outreach, helping those in need in the Cleveland area. Over the past winter, we ran a fundraiser for the Cleveland Food Bank. As you can see, we’ve raised over $700, well over our goal of $500. There will be more chances for folks from Black Sun to give to the community through the efforts of our recently assembled Community Outreach Committee. Stay tuned for more information on that!

We can’t do this without the generous support of our friends, initiates, and guests. So thank you for all your continued support and love. And we look forward to seeing you this year at Black Sun Lodge!

Love is the law, love under will.

Andrew

Support Black Sun!

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

As some of you may know, Black Sun Oasis has recently acquired a large new space, and we will be cleaning and beginning to move things over to the new space at the beginning of next month.  We will need to do a build-out on the kitchen, we need to get new curtain supports for the Mass altar and there are several things that need to be repaired before we can make the space workable for our needs.

With this mind, we would like to set up a fund-raising effort to offset the extra expenses associated with the move.  If it be your Will to help us in this effort, we would appreciate any help you are willing to give.  In the spirit of livening it up, we thought it would be fun to run the fundraiser like public television does, and offer fun gifts as a thank you for your support. One of our brothers has designed a logo for this effort and we are offering limited edition items with this logo incorporated for different levels of giving, as described below:

$25-$49 – your choice of a die-cut pin or a canvas tote bag.

$50-$74 – your choice of a travel mug  or a T-Shirt.

$75-$99 – a messenger bag

$100 -$124 – a “swag bag” consisting of all three of the above options.

$125 and above – a “swag bag” plus your name engraved on a plaque that will be displayed in a prominent place in our new temple space.

Any contribution below $25 will be acknowledged by letter of thanks from the officers at Black Sun Oasis.  This letter will also accompany all of the above mentioned gifts.

We are looking to run the fundraiser through the end of April, so if you would like to make a series of smaller donations from now until then, the donations will accumulate to the level you have reached at the end.  For instance, if you contribute $5 this month and $20 next month, you would get your choice of a pin or a tote.  This applies all the way up to the highest level we have set.

Thanks in advance for your thoughtful support!

Love is the law, love under will.

2014 ev & The Future!

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

As we come to the end of 2014, I’m looking back over this past year filled with wonder and amazement.

Black Sun Oasis has accomplished so much in this short trip around the Sun. Membership has increased, our finances have stabilized, and we are able to offer members more. We’ve done a bunch of initiations, classes, and rituals. Members have volunteered their time to construct and improve temple furniture and equipment, and so much more.

2014 introduced a new Magick Monday class, where members are learning the art and craft of magical ritual, as well as Practical Thelema, where attendees read Crowley’s writings on the philosophical and practical sides of Thelema and discuss how to implement it into our daily lives.

This year, we began a marketing campaign that doubled as outreach into the Northeast Ohio area, and I’m happy to say we are seeing the fruits of our labors in both merchandise sales and community awareness.

In 2015, we’re planning much, much more. We’ll be adding more monthly classes to the calendar on a variety of subjects, such as Astrology and Enochian Magick.  We’re also adding a weekly Yoga session to the calendar, which we’re very excited about. Additionally, we’ll be scheduling Gnostic Mass rehearsals for current and aspiring EGC Novices. For dates on these and the events mentioned above, please see our calendar.

This success would be impossible without our community of men and women who dedicate themselves, their time, and their donations to helping us grow. I thank each and every one of you for all that you do.

I’d also like to thank our three Foundational members, who voluntarily pay higher monthly dues in order insure our monthly costs get covered. In return, they will be able to enjoy a number of new benefits that are explained further in the new treasury policies section on the website. If you are interested in becoming a Foundational member, or if you’d like more information, please contact the Treasurer at treasurer@blacksun93.org

2014 was an amazing year. With your help, 2015 will bring further growth and prosperity to Black Sun Oasis. May 2015 bring you the same.

Love is the law, love under will.

The Fool & The Hierophant

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Today is April 1st, 2014 era vulgaris, April Fools Day. By the Thelemic calendar, it is also the year of the Fool, in the cycle of the Hierophant.

The Fool, to me, represents the courage to start along a path. It is the card of initiation, of throwing caution to the wind and seeing where life takes us. It feels pretty appropriate, being a newish Body Master, that my first full year be the year of the Fool.

The Hierophant is the bringer of the Logos to man, the cosmic delivery agent of the Word. This is, to me, the cycle in which we bring the word of the Law to the people.

So, like the Fool I am, I’m beginning a new project based upon outreach to our region, and I’ve convinced other Body Masters in the midwest to at least consider doing the same for their regions. I call the outreach program “Project Hierophant”. The goal is finding new ways to promulgate the Law. Some may call what we’re doing marketing, but I like the idea that we’re educating, not selling, the ideas of Thelema to all who ask. We’re beginning with identification, with T shirts and business cards announcing our existence to the world at large. I also ask folks who have been curious about OTO and Thelema, or who once came around, to come to a Meet & Greet in your area, celebrate a Gnostic Mass, and see what the Order has to offer. Check out our local and regional calendars for dates and times, join our Facebook and Meetup communities to discuss the OTO and our system, or email me with questions.

Our system and beliefs, although based upon occult teachings, travel far beyond the world of the mystical. Paramount to Thelema are ideals of universal freedom, liberty, and rights of humanity. As Aleister Crowley writes in his essay “Duty”:

“Each being is, exactly as you are, the sole centre of a Universe in no wise identical with, or even assimilable to, your own. The impersonal Universe of ‘Nature’ is only an abstraction, approximately true, of the factors which it is convenient to regard as common to all. The Universe of another is therefore necessarily unknown to, and unknowable by, you; but it induces currents of energy in yours by determining in part your reactions. Use men and women, therefore, with the absolute respect due to inviolable standards of measurement; verify your own observations by comparison with similar judgements made by them; and, studying the methods which determine their failure or success, acquire for yourself the wit and skill required to cope with your own problems.”

Love is the law, love under will.

Jugis

The Thelemic Holy Season

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Each of the twenty-two days of the Thelemic Holy Season (March 20-April 10), the time from the Spring Equinox through the Three Days of the Writing of the Book of The Law, is attributed to one of the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet, which are then also attributed to a tarot card and a chapter in our Holy Books.
I’ve created a public Google Calendar for each of these days, with their corresponding Hebrew letter, Tarot card, and Holy Book here:
I will be setting up Skype session each evening at 8pm on non-event days so we can read and share the experience of the Holy Season. This will culminate to the Three Days of the Writing of the Book of the Law on April 8th, 9th, and 10th, where we will be meeting at the Temple each evening to share a potluck meal, read one of the Chapters, and toast to the Aeon!
I hope you’ll get a chance to join me in this wonderful time of year.
Love is the law, love under will.

An Introduction and Plans!

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

I would first like to thank Brother Ron for his years of service as Body Master of Black Sun Oasis. His hard work is a true inspiration, and I hope I can continue in it.

When I took my Iº in 2009, I took on the magical motto “Jugis Incrementum”, that is, “Continued Growth”. This, to me, is my core philosophy in everything that I do. If it does not allow me to grow in some way, then it needs to be re-evaluated. The same, in my opinion, goes for the Black Sun Community. As such, I am planning some changes and upgrades to the Black Sun Temple during my tenure as Master. Here are some things we’ll be working on in the near future:

  • Rebuild Temple furniture
  • Hold 2 public Masses per month
  • Offer more workshops, rituals, and lectures for those interested
  • Creating outreach programs that go beyond our local community
  • Work with Masters in the region to formalize communication and scheduling

These are just scratches on the surface for what I think Black Sun Oasis can achieve. I will be working with our members in developing the Black Sun community and further transforming the Oasis into not just a place where our Brothers and Sisters can go to learn and grow, but a true place that they can call a home.

These plans will take work, and it can’t happen without your continued support. We need folks to step up and help each other out. We need to come together and help each other achieve our goals, both personally and in the community.

I have been meeting with individual dues-current Brothers and Sisters outside of the Temple to discuss what they want out of Black Sun, and what they want to put into it. If I have not yet met with you, rest assured that I will be getting in touch with you soon. If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to contact me at master@blacksun93.org

Continued Growth takes a lot of work, and I look forward to working with each and every one of you in accomplishing the Great Work.

Love is the law, love under will.

Jugis Incrementum

Several Seasons – 2013

As I look back over the past months, I realize that I have been terrible at keeping up with my reporting about our activities and accomplishments. I will do my best to sum up each of the three quarters from this year so that we will be caught up to where we are in time and space. My apologies for the extreme delay in sharing Black Sun’s portion of the journey!

Winter 2013

During the month of January, we were pretty busy with our Work. We performed a Gnostic Mass on the first weekend. As per always, it is always a pleasure to share our central ritual with our brethren and guests, and it marks a good start of the vulgar year to begin it so. We had a brilliant discussion about Sacred Geometry that melted a few minds (in a good way) on the second weekend followed by Second degree initiations the same weekend. Our initiations have always recharged me, and having the opportunity to provide this experience for our Brothers and Sister was a powerful and beautiful experience. The fourth weekend of January was the beginning of a slightly new, but altogether awesome experience. We have decided to undertake performing the rituals that have been identified as the “Roots of Thelema” and the first of these we performed was a Mithraic Liturgy. This ritual was a whole new experience for us and gave us all some interesting perspective. Also the tauroctony painted by one of our local artists (and later welcome Guest) was positively awesome. We are indeed very lucky to have such a great group of magicians at Black Sun.

The second weekend of the month of February witnessed the Third degree initiation of one of our dear Sisters. She managed to raise herself up to perform our public Gnostic Mass the very next day! What a Master she has become! On the fourth weekend, we initiated a few Guests into the Order and welcome their involvement and participation. As with all journeys, theirs began with a single step, and we hope that in time, they will find themselves where they intended to be.

Ahh, March! The month of our year-end and year-beginning. The Work continued as we performed the Gnostic Mass on the first weekend. The second weekend was a very mixed one emotionally for us, as a couple of us made the journey to West Virginia to celebrate the Greater Feast of a beloved Brother and brilliant Man and magician. We were very fortunate to have known Brother J.S., and I am sure I speak for all of us when I say that we wish him the greatest of adventures on the next journey. He will be remembered with great fondness and missed for our not having had enough time with him. On the third weekend, we held a discussion about the Minerval initiation for those initiates who were interested in a more broad and ranging conversation about the degree. We held an Equinox Ritual and Feast to celebrate the Vernal Equinox and the start of our new year on the fourth weekend. It was a great thing to celebrate with Brothers and Sisters, Guests, and guests. That marked the end of Winter for us, which was a busy and intense season us all.

Spring 2013

We celebrated our public Gnostic Mass on the first Saturday of the month and followed it up with a celebration of the Three Days of the Writing of the Book of the Law which was followed by a Feast. As a part of our celebration, the city of Cleveland was inadvertently sprinkled with the ashes of a Book of the Law that we ritually burned for the event. I am sure the energy that we stirred up that day within ourselves was echoed in the glorious windstorm that made the burning of the pages more difficult as well as the “sharing” of them with the city at large. The third Monday of April began a journey for several members and guests of Black Sun as our Brother and Deputy Master organized a “Magick Monday” gathering to discuss and work through various Thelemic rituals, magick, and practices. This group has met almost every month, once a month, and the participants have all shared what a great experience it is for them. Kudos to you all, and keep up the good Work! We performed First degree initiations on the fourth weekend and brought two Men and Brothers into our Order. I hope that they find their journey within our system to be as rewarding and glorious as I have.

The month of May began with a Gnostic Mass on the second weekend of the month to allow for our Meet & Greet (held on the first Tuesday of every month) to happen before it. During the following week, Magick Mondays had its second meeting and the Black Sun Book Club had its first meeting and discussion. This group was also organized by our dear Brother and Deputy Master to discuss Thelemic texts in a group setting. Again, brilliant Work! A Chapter meeting was held in our Temple during the third weekend with a meet and greet for the local members on Saturday evening. Thank you to the membership of Black Sun Oasis for allowing Ouarda Chapter the use of its space. An Initiator Training was held on the fourth weekend and several Brothers and Sisters took the opportunity to explore our initiatory system’s processes and procedures in more depth. A meet and greet was held on Saturday evening for members of Black Sun to meet and get acquainted with two of our S.G.I.G./Bishops. Again, thank you to Black Sun’s members for the use of the Temple for this weekend of instruction.

The month of June started with a bang as one of our Brothers received his KEW initiation and three other brethren received their Fourth and P.I. initiations. The annihilation was a success, and our Sisters and Brother have completed their journey in the Man of Earth initiations. Their journeys are by no means over, but the initiations have reached their conclusion with Fire and Glory! Both S.G.I.G./Bishops in town for these initiations met with the local membership on Sunday before their flight home. A public Gnostic Mass was celebrated on the second weekend. On the third weekend, our second batch of Minerval initiations of the year was performed where we welcomed two new Guests into our Order. The third weekend of June started a new pattern for Black Sun Oasis with a second, private Gnostic Mass to be performed each month. This gives members interested in serving our community in the roles of the Mass an opportunity to learn and experience them before they perform publicly. This also gives our membership the opportunity to participate in a second Mass each month, so it is a win on all counts! We celebrated the Solstice with a Feast that evening, and everyone enjoyed one another’s company and fraternity. Magick Monday and the Black Sun Book Club met during the following week, but due to inclement weather, our outing to go stargazing had to be cancelled. This brought the season of Spring to a close and delivered us into the warm nights of Summer.

Summer 2013

Our public Gnostic Mass was celebrated on the first weekend of July. A business meeting was held on the second weekend with a Minerval Roundtable discussion following on Saturday and a First degree Roundtable discussion on Sunday. These opportunities to explore and converse about our initiations have proved helpful and sometimes amazingly insightful for everyone participating. I look forward to continuing these discussions and expanding them to the other degrees of the Man of Earth as we go. Our private Gnostic Mass was celebrated on the third weekend followed by the Magick Monday gathering during the next week. Black Sun invited its members to join in a field trip to the Cleveland Art Museum on the fourth weekend. To round out the month, the Black Sun Book Club met during the last week of the month to continue their discussion of Thelemic texts.

The public Gnostic Mass was celebrated the second weekend of August (again, following the Meet and Greet held on the first Tuesday of the month). During the following week, the First Night of the Prophet and His Bride was celebrated among those who could be present and a Thelemic ladies night was held at a local coffee shop. The private Gnostic Mass was celebrated the third weekend and Black Sun was invited to present two different sessions at the annual Cleveland Pagan Pride Festival. I had the opportunity to speak to a few interested people about Liber Resh and to give a brief informational presentation about the O.T.O. It was good to get out and be a part of an event that celebrates so many different traditions. We appreciate being invited and look forward to working with the event again next year!

September began with a Gnostic Mass on the first weekend followed by Second degree initiations for a Brother and Sister. It always brings me such a sense of happiness and oddly, accomplishment to watch as my Brothers and Sisters move through our system of initiations. I have a great deal of respect for everyone who works their way through the whole system and does the work along the way to help themselves to evolve and change into the person that they want and Will to be. For this reason, Second degrees are a great place. As Magicians, they will prove themselves to themselves, and that is a beautiful thing. Several members of Black Sun traveled to the Chapter party in Indianapolis on the second weekend and the Work continued on the third weekend with three First degrees. Two Brothers and a Sister were brought into our Order, and I could not be happier for their inclusion. I love First degree and always have. I know that all three of them will be brilliant. Later that evening, we celebrated a Feast for the Autumnal Equinox with a great deal of food, fun, and fraternity shared by all who participated. A private Gnostic Mass was celebrated on Sunday of that weekend with Magick Monday following. That brought us to the close of Summer. So much growth and development is always a pleasure.

And Finally…

This will also bring to a close my tenure as Master of Black Sun Oasis. It has been such a brilliant journey over the past four years. We have grown, prospered, struggled, changed, and become in so many new, expected, and a fair few unexpected ways that I cannot thank my Brothers and Sisters enough for all that they have helped me to accomplish. We acquired a dedicated Temple space (and have been in it for almost three years at this point!), we have grown in numbers and support, and the fraternal bonds that we share with one another have been strengthened by our dedication to the Work that we do together. I will continue to serve Black Sun as an initiator as well as a Priest and for a time, I will serve as its Deputy Master. I cannot imagine delivering this local body that I have worked so hard to support into more capable hands. I wish nothing but the most glorious of futures for our Order, Black Sun, and all of its members, my Brothers and Sisters. I love you all. Thank you.

Autumn 2012

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

While these updates seem to be slow in coming, Black Sun Oasis has been incredibly busy! During the month of September 2012, we met to discuss the Gnostic Mass, which is always one of my favorite topics. There are so many things to cover with that ritual that it could take days and days to do it justice, but we did our best. The following week we performed the Gnostic Mass where two of our Brothers S and J were Ordained Priests of the EGC. It was a beautiful ceremony and brilliant to see our Brothers receive this charge of service. It was also a pleasure to have Brother K in town to perform the Ordinations. A special thank you is also in order for Brother A and Sister L for assisting with such a beautiful ceremony not once, but twice! We also performed a set of IV* and P.I. initiations which were awesome as usual. It was great to have so many people in town and to have the opportunity to review and perform these initiations. Congratulations to all of the newly made Perfect Initiates! The month was brought to a close with another Gnostic Mass, the third for this month, performed with joy and beauty.

The month of October 2012 was started off with a Gnostic Mass on the second weekend and then we were off to the Ouarda Chapter party in at Theorte Ekstasis’ new temple space in the valley of Louisville, KY. It was a wonderful party and the bonds of fraternity were a delight to partake.

The month of November 2012 had us back to work in a big way. We started off the month with Minerval initiations for three local candidates. The next weekend we performed the Gnostic Mass and shared in the camaraderie of our fraternity. The next weekend Black Sun hosted a second sewing workshop for members interested in learning to sew. Simultaneously, we performed a Second degree initiation in our Sister Oasis’ valley at the temple of Sword and Serpent in Dayton, OH. Much appreciation to all who participated in these events and kept things moving on both fronts!

December 2012 started with a Gnostic Mass to commemorate the Prophet’s Greater Feast. After the Mass, we held a feast and celebrated Crowley’s life and accomplishments with fraternity and food. The next weekend, we performed First degree initiations. It is always a joyous time for me when we initiate people into the First degree. There is something beautiful and special about welcoming a person as a Sister or Brother. The next weekend was a celebration of the Winter Solstice as well as a couple of special ceremonies to accompany the hanging of some brilliant art in our temple. The first was an original ritual written my members of Black Sun to accompany the awesome artwork painted by a friend to personify Babalon. The ritual was amazing! There were 9 participants and another handful of observers. The ritual itself is posted in our Materials section under “Ritual for the Consecration and Placement of the Abomination of Desolation.” Participant’s comments and experiences will be added soon. A piece of cover art from Crowley’s Book of Thoth was beautifully framed by Brother T and was accompanied by a reading of Israfel. This is now also hanging in our temple. The evening was capped off with feasting and companionship.

As the year ended on our second year in a separate and sacred space, I could not be happier with our accomplishments. Black Sun Oasis has grown and changed so much over the last few years. I want to thank everyone who has worked so hard to help us achieve all that we have set out to accomplish. The rewards and accolades are as much yours as mine. Of course, there is always more to do. We have many projects still in the works, and I look forward to many more successes and triumphs as we move to our next part of the Great Work.

Love is the Law, Love under Will.

Summer 2012

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

June

The last few months have been a whirlwind sort of experience. We started the month of June off with a Second Degree initiation down at Sword and Serpent’s temple. It was a great beginning to the last few months and got the Thelemic energy flowing for everyone who attended.

The next weekend, we attended the Babalon Rising Festival where Black Sun members performed a Gnostic Mass to a congregation of more than 50 people. It was a very awesome and slightly overwhelming feeling. That is the largest group of people that we have had at a single Mass before which was fantastic. It was also good to be able to spend some time with fellow Thelemites for a few days.

Upon returning from Babalon Rising, we had a week off, but some of us were able to attend another initiation at Pyramid Lodge in Buffalo, NY. It was, as usual, wonderful to spend a little time with the Brethren there and to engage in brilliant conversation with them.

The following weekend was our celebration of the Summer Solstice. From what I have been told, there was a good turn out and much fraternal conversation and enjoyment of one another’s company was shared. This was also the weekend of the Centennial Celebration at William Blake Lodge. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend their event and participate in the festivities as we celebrated 100 years of Ordo Templi Orientis in the English speaking parts of the world. There were several brilliant parts of that weekend, and I thank all of WBL for their effort and energy!

The following weekend I spent in Chicago, IL for more initiation work. It was an amazing way to finish such a month of activity! I want to extend my deepest appreciation for everyone who put so much work into making this Work possible. I hope that I am able to live up to everyone’s expectations, especially my own!

July

The first weekend of the month of July was open which gave me a chance to catch my breath and sit down with my fellow officers to debrief on all of the things that had been happening over the last few weeks. Our break was short-lived though as we made the journey to join our Brothers in the valley of Pittsburgh, PA to participate in their Minerval initiations. These initiations were the first to be done in the valley of Pittsburgh in 10 years, and we were honored to be a part of them. I think it is safe to say that everyone who attended had a very memorable experience and the strength of our fraternal bonds was definitely strengthened through our working together to provide an awesome initiation for our newly-made Guests.

There was a great discussion of Liber O at the Black Sun temple the following weekend while I was again away. Brother JI wrote a new temple opening ritual and performed it for the first time. Meanwhile, I had the pleasure of performing the Gnostic Mass at Sword and Serpent Oasis on Saturday which was followed a fantastic evening of fraternity. Sunday I performed the Gnostic Mass again with the Brethren of Blue Equinox Oasis (twice!), which was again followed by a brilliant night of fraternity.

Soror NO started a Night of Nuit for women interested in the OTO to have an opportunity to sit down and talk with other women about their experiences in the Order. If there are any women interested in joining her for the next one, keep an eye out for it to be posted on our calendar and to be announced on the BlackSun93 e-list.

The next weekend we were back in our temple with a private Gnostic Mass. I was very happy to have our Brother AA serve as the Priest for the first time in quite a while. He did a great job, and I look forward to seeing him in the role many more times to come!

August

The second weekend of the month of August started out with a discussion about Liber LXV. This book is so full of passionate words of love and adoration that it was a joy to discuss it and share our thoughts on which verses spoke to us in particular. I am looking forward to the next discussion on one of our Holy Books!

We had a very informational discussion in Robe Design the following weekend. It was good to see so many people interested in learning a skill that will serve them in their future endeavors with the Order as well as their personal work, magical and mundane. I expect that after the next of Soror NO’s sewing classes that we will begin the Black Sun sewing shop and start working on putting some robes, banners, and other magical sewing projects in the works!

I had the opportunity to visit a few of our Brothers in West Virginia for a few days as well. It was very good to have some time to hang out and build stronger bonds of fraternity as well as get to see what they are working on building. I was and am very encouraged by their interest and devotion to the building of a local body in their state and the people they are attracting to our Work.

Our last temple event for the month of August was a very new and beautiful experience for many of us at Black Sun Oasis. We performed a Greater Feast Mass for the wife of one of our Brothers. It was the first time that we worked with this kind of celebration of the Gnostic Mass, and it was a very different one than I expected. The energy of the Mass was more subdued in many ways than it normally feels, but the intensity of the Work was still potent. The closing portion of the Greater Feast Mass was a very new experience for all who participated, but I think it gave us a real opportunity to see the nature and essence of the work that we do throughout our lives. The Greater Feast that followed was delicious and filled with much conversation about the life and Work of a woman few of us had met, but all of us felt much closer to through the reading of her poetry and the stories we heard of her life and time with our Brother. I wish that I had known her. She was a remarkable woman.

The next day, we attended the Cleveland Pagan Pride Days in Bedford, OH. I was not sure quite what to expect, but I was hopeful that things would go well. I was pleasantly surprised to be enthusiastically welcomed along with the other members of Black Sun Oasis. Our discussion about the OTO and our involvement and experiences with it was well received. Several great discussions followed with a few of the people who had attended, and we all had a great time participating in a community that we have silently belonged to for too long. I hope that this was the beginning of many more collaborations and shared experiences to come.

Coming Months

Over the next few months we have many more exciting events to come. In September, we have two Priest Ordinations, IV* and P.I. initiations, and a Minerval Roundtable discussion that will be tyled to Minerval. In mid-late October or maybe into November, we are planning a Gnostic Mass weekend that we are tentatively calling a Mass of Masses. The purpose of this weekend is to get people who are novitiates working on learning the Gnostic Mass to get together and have the opportunity to work with other people than they may have had the opportunity to work with before. I am hoping that we will be able to bring everyone who participates the opportunity to work with at least two ordained clergy at least once over the course of the weekend. I think this will be a great learning opportunity and the Masses will be taped for those who would like a copy of their performance to be sent to their Bishop.

So, I guess to sum it all up, this has been a very busy past few months for Black Sun. I expect that things will settle down a little as the summer comes to a close, but it is difficult to know for sure how anything will play out. I want to thank everyone who has helped me to make all of the things that we do possible. I also want to remind everyone that we are a 501c3 (nonprofit organization) and that any donations to our Work are tax deductible and very welcome! The work that we do is worthwhile and important, but it is by no means free and every bit helps. If you would like to make a donation to Black Sun Oasis, you can do so through PayPal to our account under treasurer@blacksun93.org. We will also be updating the webpage with a link that will allow for you to enter in whatever amount you would like to donate. Thank you for your support!

Love is the Law, Love under Will.

Summer Solstice 2011 ev

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

As I sat down to write this it occurred to me that it has been a while since my last update. We have been very busy with the Work of the Oasis over the past few months. So far this year, we have performed 12 Minerval initiations, 6 First degree initiations, 3 Second degree initiations, and 1 Third degree initiation. There will be more of each of these before the year is out, but as I think about it, we have been very busier with initiations than we have been for a while. That is something that I am both proud of and excited to see.

We have done 2 Gnostic Masses so far this year, and although both have been private, it was amazing to see more than 25 people in attendance at the last one. I think that may be the most people I have ever heard of being at one of our local Masses. This is also very exciting. We have been doing Gnostic Mass practices every other Sunday at 11:00 a.m., and it is very good to see that there are a lot of people interested in learning and performing that ritual. I have been performing this ritual as the Priest for more than 10 years at this point (the last 2 as an official Priest of the EGC) and can only say that I am thrilled to see so many people interested in working that magic.

We have also been working a lot with other local bodies of the OTO quite a bit. I love going to other valleys or having them come to us and sharing ideas and energy. I want to extend my thanks to all of the Brothers and Sisters who have welcomed us into their homes and temples as well as those who have come to visit and join us in ours. The feelings of Fraternity grow so much with each of these visits. Thank you all for the Agape! The Thelemic current is growing stronger in the Mid-west, and I want to see that continue to grow, develop, and prosper in the years to come.

Specifically to my Brothers and Sisters at Black Sun, your work and devotion to our Temple has helped us to transform a bunch of dirty and grimy rooms into a space that we can all be proud of and comfortable in. It has been a lot of work, but the benefits of that labor are beginning to show. This past weekend was a testament to that. We would not have been able to host so many people so comfortably before we had this space, and I hope that you are all as proud of our accomplishments as I am. We are not done with our Work, but it is very gratifying to see that the efforts we have put into this endeavor are indeed paying off. I thank you all for everything you have done, are doing, and will continue to do as we move forward.

Love is the Law, Love under Will.