What is the Builders of the Adytum (BOTA) about?

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posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 07:23 AM
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I've never heard of anyone being denied BOTA admission because of sexuality. This would conflict with BOTA's teachings if true.

Several years ago, a group led by Paul Clark broke off from the BOTA and formed a new organization. The splinter group, which call themselves the Fraternity of the Hidden Light, didn't like the way the BOTA has been governed since the death of Rev. Ann Davies, former chief of the Order.

The teachings of the Hidden Light group seem to be pretty identical with BOTA, and they also use the Paul Foster Case / Ann Davies material. The only difference with BOTA appears to be Order government. Their website is here.




posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 07:29 AM
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Can you learn as fast or slow as you are capable, or is the timing set? I am not talking about advancing levels because that is something trivial. However, with information of this sort, I suck it up like a sponge quickly, and knowing me I'd want to keep progressing.



posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 07:56 AM
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Originally posted by johnny2127
Can you learn as fast or slow as you are capable, or is the timing set? I am not talking about advancing levels because that is something trivial. However, with information of this sort, I suck it up like a sponge quickly, and knowing me I'd want to keep progressing.


When I was going through the BOTA curriculum, lessons were mailed out every two weeks. It is my understanding that now they mail out the entire month's lessons at one time to save on postage expenses.

Most of the lessons have exercises to practice, and the lessons themselves are divided into varies series or classes. For example, the first set of lessons is called "Seven Steps", the second "Introduction To Tarot", the third "Tarot Fundamentals", and so on. At the end of each series of lessons, there is an examination. Upon passing, the Board of Stewards issues the Student a certificate of grade completion.

Each series contains x number of lessons, depending on the scope of the series. I can only assume that the Fraternity of the Hidden Light operates its curriculum in the same manner, as well as AMORC.



posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 10:49 AM
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Originally posted by Masonic Light
I've never heard of anyone being denied BOTA admission because of sexuality. This would conflict with BOTA's teachings if true.

Several years ago, a group led by Paul Clark broke off from the BOTA and formed a new organization. The splinter group, which call themselves the Fraternity of the Hidden Light, didn't like the way the BOTA has been governed since the death of Rev. Ann Davies, former chief of the Order.

The teachings of the Hidden Light group seem to be pretty identical with BOTA, and they also use the Paul Foster Case / Ann Davies material. The only difference with BOTA appears to be Order government. Their website is here.



They weren't denied membership,I didn't say that..but I was told they could only go so far within BOTA because of their sexuality. The higher levels, were denied to gays, because of their sexuality. when that link I posted was working, it actually had BOTA correspondence posted, which I saw, that confirmed this. My initial hit on that site came up under "BOTA's pink-triangle conspiracy" on a google search; I'd look into it further, masonic, or just call the office..maybe you'll get a better answer than I did..



posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 11:48 AM
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Originally posted by dragonseeker
when that link I posted was working, it actually had BOTA correspondence posted, which I saw, that confirmed this. My initial hit on that site came up under "BOTA's pink-triangle conspiracy" on a google search; I'd look into it further, masonic, or just call the office..maybe you'll get a better answer than I did..


I found it:

celestialearth.tribe.net...

It is troubling. The author of the letter, a certain Frater Joseph, says in a nutshell that gays have too much baggage due to social stigmatism, and therefore are not eligible for higher levels.

I find Joseph's argument both nonsensical and illogical. Perhaps this is one of the reasons that Paul Clark and others left BOTA to form the Fraternity of the Hidden Light? While Clark and Co. do not publicly bad-mouth BOTA, they have insinuated that BOTA's governing body is not up to the task (the letter by Frater Joseph confirms this in part). Perhaps the Order has strayed somewhat off course in the years since Ann's death.

Anywho, that being the case, perhaps we should look closer at Clark's organization. He was personally trained by Ann Davies, and she was personally trained by PFC himself. The podcast "Occult of Personality" has a pretty good interview with Paul Clark here:

www.occultofpersonality.com...



posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 12:21 PM
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Originally posted by Masonic Light

Originally posted by dragonseeker
when that link I posted was working, it actually had BOTA correspondence posted, which I saw, that confirmed this. My initial hit on that site came up under "BOTA's pink-triangle conspiracy" on a google search; I'd look into it further, masonic, or just call the office..maybe you'll get a better answer than I did..


I found it:

celestialearth.tribe.net...

It is troubling. The author of the letter, a certain Frater Joseph, says in a nutshell that gays have too much baggage due to social stigmatism, and therefore are not eligible for higher levels.

I find Joseph's argument both nonsensical and illogical. Perhaps this is one of the reasons that Paul Clark and others left BOTA to form the Fraternity of the Hidden Light? While Clark and Co. do not publicly bad-mouth BOTA, they have insinuated that BOTA's governing body is not up to the task (the letter by Frater Joseph confirms this in part). Perhaps the Order has strayed somewhat off course in the years since Ann's death.

Anywho, that being the case, perhaps we should look closer at Clark's organization. He was personally trained by Ann Davies, and she was personally trained by PFC himself. The podcast "Occult of Personality" has a pretty good interview with Paul Clark here:

www.occultofpersonality.com...


I'm listening to the podcast now, very interesting..I may try it out. thanks. Yes, this really bothered me..seems like it goes against what this kind of school is about, enlightenment..discrimination would be the opposite of that..

[edit on 9-1-2009 by dragonseeker]



posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 12:45 PM
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Paul Foster Case, the founder of BOTA, was a Mason, a member of the Order of the Golden Dawn (right at the end of the real life of that organization -- before it became of jumble of conflicting trademark claims), and a psychiatrist. As the Golden Dawn died, Case felt that he could preserve it's knowledge in a safe form and started BOTA. In part, he felt that the Golden Dawn had caused its problems by letting in various Eastern mystic practices and that this had damaged the spirit of the order, causing discord.

Ann Davies (who, I believe eventually married Case), significantly modified the Order after Case's death -- including moving the Inner Order (about which you will hear literally nothing until you are, perhaps, invited to join) -- further into the shadows. She also started the correspondence courses to allow people who couldn't meet in a group to learn.

Today, I would guess that the majority of BOTA members have neither a study group nor a Pronais (?) organization (the ritual group for the Outer Order). And the LA temple seems to have consolidated power to such an extent that it may be the case that Inner Order activity is limited to LA.

I was a member of BOTA and enjoyed the people. I was bothered, however, by the somewhat outdated psychological theory that was attached to the esoteric (if you prefer that term over "occult") study. The lessons, clearly, haven't been updated... even the parts that should be in light of new research.

I, likewise, learned that BOTA did not accept gays into the Inner Order. I am gay. What I learned was that Ann Davies, in particular, had admitted some gay men and lesbians into the Inner Order and had found their "energies to be disruptive."

To be charitable, perhaps it is the case that the sort of un-integrated personality that society, through its discrimination, forced on gay people was disruptive to esoteric workings. Or, perhaps, Davies was just a bigot. I dunno. But I ceased to make my payments for lessons, stopped going to the study group and never applied to join the ritual group... despite having gotten far enough along to do.

In keeping with their philosophy, they never pursued me, never asked me why, and never invited me to return. Which felt odd. But it also reassured me to some degree since that is exactly how they said they would behave, being, as they are, big believers in "when the student is ready, the teacher will appear."

Hope that helps some.

= Edit for silly ommission

[edit on 9-1-2009 by driley]



posted on Jan, 9 2009 @ 01:11 PM
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driley,

Interesting analysis, and thanks. Just wanted to respond to a couple of things:



Originally posted by driley
Paul Foster Case, the founder of BOTA, was a Mason, a member of the Order of the Golden Dawn (right at the end of the real life of that organization -- before it became of jumble of conflicting trademark claims), and a psychiatrist.


You may have Case confused with Israel Regardie, who was a psychiatrist and Reichian therapist, as well as Golden Dawn initiate and teacher. Case's Ph.D was in music.


As the Golden Dawn died, Case felt that he could preserve it's knowledge in a safe form and started BOTA. In part, he felt that the Golden Dawn had caused its problems by letting in various Eastern mystic practices and that this had damaged the spirit of the order, causing discord.


Case was actually expelled from the Golden Dawn by Moina Mathers, who, after her husband's death, became somewhat tyrannical over the G.'.D.'. Temples (Crowley lampooned her for this in a hilarious article in The Equinox). Most of the membership of Case's Temple supported Case, and resigned, in effect co-founding BOTA. The Thoth-Hermes Temple of the Golden Dawn then became extinct.


Ann Davies (who, I believe eventually married Case), significantly modified the Order after Case's death -- including moving the Inner Order (about which you will hear literally nothing until you are, perhaps, invited to join) -- further into the shadows. She also started the correspondence courses to allow people who couldn't meet in a group to learn.


Davies never married Case, nor had a romantic relationship with him (Case considered Davies his daughter). Case was married to his second wife Hariett at his time of death.

The correspondence courses began with Case (he discusses writing these at length in several letters to Regardie). While Davies made several additions to the curriculum courses, the bulk is still Case's work.



I was a member of BOTA and enjoyed the people. I was bothered, however, by the somewhat outdated psychological theory that was attached to the esoteric (if you prefer that term over "occult") study. The lessons, clearly, haven't been updated... even the parts that should be in light of new research.


I'm not sure that the psychological teachings are outdated (they express a generally orthodox Reichian position). However, I do believe that some of the biological teachings are outdated, especially in regard to Case's comments on the pituitary gland.



I, likewise, learned that BOTA did not accept gays into the Inner Order. I am gay. What I learned was that Ann Davies, in particular, had admitted some gay men and lesbians into the Inner Order and had found their "energies to be disruptive."


I'm curious as to how you found this out. Were you told by a member of the Board of Stewards? I ask because I'm not convinced that Davies would have barred homosexuals, even if some modern BOTA officer said she did.



posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 03:22 PM
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reply to post by Masonic Light
 


This is, of course, what happens when I go by memory and off the cuff. (And I *knew* Paul and Ann never were romantically linked. What was I thinking?!)

Masonic Light is correct in each and every correction.

As for how I learned about the anti-gay policy, I read about it on the interest and then wrote emails to the local people in authority. When no one would out-and-out say it was false, I was left with the impression that, from their point of view, I had found an embarrassing truth.

I would like to add that I would hope, sincerely, that I am entirely wrong about this. I liked BOTA -- I wouldn't expect to agree with 100% of everything such a group teaches. I admired many of the people I met through BOTA and found them charming, funny, ethical, tolerant, and insightful.

So, Masonic Light, if you call up and get a different answer from the BOTA authorities and let me know... well, I'd be pleased as punch to admit my error.



posted on Feb, 8 2009 @ 06:13 PM
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reply to post by dragonseeker
 


for dragonseeker .i read your comment and i was so pleased to see someone that feels strong against discrimination even if it's not about his person .Me and my partner joined a gnostic organization but we had to quit when we heard that they " accept " us but they considered us spiritually inferior .I was wondering ,by any chance if u happened to know about esoteric spiritual organization that accept gay as an equal.Sorry to bother you.Thanks!



posted on Feb, 9 2009 @ 10:01 AM
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Originally posted by Anonymous ATS
reply to post by dragonseeker
 


for dragonseeker .i read your comment and i was so pleased to see someone that feels strong against discrimination even if it's not about his person .Me and my partner joined a gnostic organization but we had to quit when we heard that they " accept " us but they considered us spiritually inferior .I was wondering ,by any chance if u happened to know about esoteric spiritual organization that accept gay as an equal.Sorry to bother you.Thanks!


I don't, off the top of my head,since it's not an issue I have any experience with(other than as described in this thread), but I would be shocked if, say AMORC(rosicrucian) held such views..maybe fraternity of hidden light..not sure..but, I wish you luck searching..it makes no sense for a spiritual organization to discriminate..goes against the whole deal, ya know?


[edit on 9-2-2009 by dragonseeker]



posted on Feb, 10 2009 @ 09:02 PM
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reply to post by dragonseeker
 


I was active in BOTA for several years, and have drifted away because of their inability to work with our gay brothers (and sisters, I would suppose) fully. In gentle opposition to a previous poster, I do not believe this discrimination is due to religious (read: Christian) influence, but rather due to some justification not visible to those working in study groups or Pronaos.

I side with posters who worry about discrimination against any brother (or sister in the case of co-ed groups like BOTA). In fact, I joined BOTA rather than petitioning a lodge because:

* I wanted our sisters to be included
* I worry that the FM lodges have devolved into Good Ole Boy social clubs, devoid of philosophy or hunger for hidden knowledge.


To be fair, I did have other criticisms of BOTA that might drive me into the arms of the FLO or similar, but the correspondence materials from BOTA/PFC are really some kind of good. I recently found my unread work while unpacking boxes, and will start studying again. Maybe I'll start working with BOTA as a solitary again; maybe I'll jump to FLO. Dunno.

If I found a mainstream masonic lodge that:
* recognized Prince Hall
* had members of different faiths
* took the symbolism and teachings seriously
I would probably petition. I am in 75081 zipcode btw, if anyone has suggestions.



posted on Aug, 11 2009 @ 11:34 AM
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Hello All,

I just registered because I saw this thread.

I have read the letter by Joseph Nolen. I actually met him in the 1980's.

If you read it carefully you will note that there is no discrimination toward homosexuals in being a member of BOTA.

There is an explanation that he gives for not allowing homosexuals to a specific grade rituals, and he gives a reason. If you read it carefully you will understand.

If you are proficient in the work involved in the earliest stages of transforming yourself, there is no danger. If, however, you do have 'issues' those issues will become energized and can grow from minor issues to big issues. The grade rituals in question are by invitation and not open to the general membership, and I am sure must be earned. There are most assuredly other 'issues' that many BOTA members have
that would also exclude them from invitation into certain grade rituals.

If you think of it as a discrimination problem? OK. What about persons who drink just a little too much alcohol, or people who use drugs or people who have racial or creed issues? Do you want those issues ampliflied?
Do YOU want to be responsible for the results?

What if you co-sign for a loan for a friend? What if that friend defaults on that loan? YOU have to pay for it twice, once the the loan and then again for the lost friend, for surely you will lose that friend. This is just a loan scenario!!

We all have issues. Some of us have problems that are outwardly social and some inwardly directed. I do not want a position of responsiblity that I am not qualified for. Do YOU? I have an interest in health/vitamins/good nutrition,etc, that does not qualify me to be a practicing Physician. (even though I may know more about the subject that alot of physicians).

Personally, I think it is a lack of discretion for the person who recieved that letter, which was addressed to him only, to share it on the web. It demonstrates the very thing that J Nolen touched on in that letter.

The subject is really not one of dicrimination or sexuality but of personal development and control of the personality. We are not all qualified to be astronauts or musicians or computer programmers either and if you are you still have to be able to work within that group at a productive level.

I do know that there were changed made at BOTA after Paul died and again after Ann died. I may not agree to like all of those changes. J. Nolen died also. There may come a time when BOTA, like other occult schools becomes a shell of its former self, or maybe not. But I do like to remember that the true message of BOTA was Pauls and later Anns writings.

side note. I was an active BOTA member for several years, not now though. I do know that I have my own problems and some of them I certainly would not want to amplify any more than they are.



posted on Aug, 11 2009 @ 12:05 PM
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Originally posted by gregdous

If you think of it as a discrimination problem? OK. What about persons who drink just a little too much alcohol, or people who use drugs or people who have racial or creed issues? Do you want those issues ampliflied?
Do YOU want to be responsible for the results?



It's not the same thing. Discrimination against homosexuals comes from an outdated and erroneous idea that gays and lesbians suffer from a mental illness. We now know this is not the case, and I do not believe that PFC would have approved of such discrimination, especially considering his regard for Aleister Crowley and his own membership in the O.T.O.



posted on Aug, 11 2009 @ 12:22 PM
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well, a fer members here recently directed me to BOTA and looking into it/them i read that BOTA is build on foundations of both golden dawn and the freemasonry blue lodge tradition, among other things...

This link goes into a bit.

I personally am drawn to the areas of study and 'feel' of the organization based soully on judging the BOTA book by its cover.

Masonic Light obviously knows more than me on this topic, but as an interested party I thought I would chime in.



posted on Aug, 11 2009 @ 12:33 PM
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reply to post by Animal
 


Don't get me wrong, I think the BOTA has a fantastic curriculum. But if the current leadership discriminates against homosexuals by not allowing them to certain organizational levels for that reason only, I would say that somewhere down the line they've lost their way.

That of course has little to do with the actual student courses, which are good no matter what.



posted on Aug, 11 2009 @ 12:34 PM
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reply to post by Masonic Light
 


ya i had no idea there was sexual discrimination going on and if that is in fact the case i will have to end my membership. i will not support such actions against any group.



posted on Aug, 13 2009 @ 01:11 PM
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The case in question is not about sexuality or sexual discrimination.

All you can read from the letter posted on the link is one side of the communication.

There are roman catholic priests that will never be asked to be instructed as Jesuits and then not allowed into the heirarchy of the Jesuit order and there are other types of situations like this.

Most of the public does not even know what BOTA is or that there is other levels of the organisation. There are BOTA member who have never been to a BOTA ritual.

You cannot assert that BOTA or any group is anti-gay from one incident and with only part of the story. But then as you judge also create a mind filter that can (and will sometimes, work against you.



posted on Aug, 14 2009 @ 08:00 AM
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Originally posted by gregdous


You cannot assert that BOTA or any group is anti-gay from one incident and with only part of the story.


I cannot assert it, but other people have who've experienced it personally. Besides that, there are apparently other problems that have caused various schisms, the most interesting being the resignation of several leaders who formed the Fraternity of the Hidden Light in attempt to "get back to basics".



posted on Nov, 7 2009 @ 01:43 AM
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Greetings all. I don't know if this thread is still being read, but I stumbled upon it tonight and wanted to join the site and respond.

I was an active member of BOTA for many years, even serving as a local group coordinator for two years. BOTA is a custodian organization of the Western Mystery Tradition within the Golden Dawn system. Upon joining, you will receive correspondence courses that are some of the best occult teachings extant, period. By far the majority of BOTA members receive lessons only, but if they happen to live in or near a city where many members live, there may be a group that meets for BOTA-sanctioned public study groups, or private ritual groups call "Pronaos" for members that have reached a certain point in the lessons - we're talking months in, not years. bota.org lists the cities where study groups and Pronaos exist.

This Pronaos ritual scheme is "Golden Dawn light" modeled after masonry, and was created by Case's successor, Ann Davies. It is a beautiful healing ritual dealing with aspects of the personality and balancing the chaotic elements within ourselves. The regular change of officers of the Pronaos ceremony is actually open to the public - BOTA member or not.

Within BOTA, true Golden Dawn-style ritual, initiation and ceremony exists as well, but no BOTA member will ever speak of it, and if you ask about it, you are told something like "All occult orders have levels within levels." One poster here mentioned Ann Davies having moved this level of ritual further into the shadows, and I believe that's exactly what happened. This level of ritual is literally never spoken of, although it is mentioned in Case's lessons. It is open by invitation only, and an extremely small percentage of BOTA members are ever invited, and then only after literally years of serving in the Pronaos leadership and after showing personal stability and outstanding dedication to the Order. It is not, as far as I can tell, a matter of spiritual readiness or maturity, but more a matter of "This person isn't going anywhere, and will be a stable member of our Inner Lodge." These are actually good reasons to invite such members on one level - it certainly makes for a good, stable ritual group. I only know of the one Temple in L.A. where this level of ritual goes on, though I believe there is one in New Zealand as well, and perhaps one in South America. This one may have closed. I'm not sure.

The issue with gays supposedly being barred from this level of ritual working is therefore all but moot, since around 99% of all BOTA members are excluded.

Out of all the BOTA members I know, I know three people personally who are in the inner secret group, and none of them has ever mentioned it to me, though I know that they fly to L.A. twice a year for "business meetings." These "meetings" take place coincidentally at a specific time of year when many occult groups do major ceremonies.

If you join BOTA, you should do so for the private study of Case's excellent lessons (and there are literally close to thirteen years' worth of lessons at the rate they are sent out), not for a desire to perform Golden Dawn-styled ritual in a working lodge.

I am in fact gay and I still hold BOTA's correspondence lessons in the highest regard, and recommend joining to anyone who feels called to study the Western Mysteries within a Golden Dawn-type schema. All of the issues that surround the current government of the Order - the questions such as "did Case want the true Golden Dawn initiatory rituals to be so exclusive and secret as they are now?" can distract us from our true spiritual path. The true goal is establishing contact with our own Inner Genius, and this can be done by following Case's excellent teachings. The rituals simply serve to facilitate this process.

BOTA leadership says their main concern is to "keep the teachings pure." They keep Case's lessons pure indeed, and I for one am glad that they do.





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