Secret Texts, 10-12







Acts of the Companions

Thomas Willard



The Golden Dawn

Robert Gilbert



Freemasonry & Kipling

Paul Rich



10. (pp. 269-302) Thomas Willard : "Acts of the Companions : A. E. Waite's Fellowship of the Rosy Cross and the Novels of Charles Williams".

p. 276 novels by Williams

"Williams wrote his first novel, entitled The Black Bastard, in 1925 and

his second, as The Corpse, in 1926. ... . ... The Corpse ... Victor Gollancz accepted ... and issued it as War in Heaven (1930).

Gollancz ... published four others :

Many Dimensions (1931),

The Place of the Lion (1931),

The Greater Trumps (1932), and

Shadows of Ecstasy (1933), the last being a heavily revised version of The Black Bastard. ...

He returned to fiction with what may well be his best occult thriller, All Hallow's Eve, published shortly before his death in 1945."

pp. 276-7 William's Companions/Order/Company

p. 276

"Williams ... after repeated requests ... agreed, in April 1939, to form his own order. ...

p. 277

Williams's Company held quarterly meetings, like those of Waite's Fraternity ... . ... Members ... took their model of behavior from his most recent novel, Descent into Hell ... . They took their ritual parting from his earlier novel Many Dimensions : "Under the mercy.""

p. 280 Evelyn Underhill

Williams "knew her writings quite well, and edited her letters after she died in 1941. In the preface to this edition, he revealed that "she had joined (in 1904 ... the Order of the G. D. ... ." ... She made friendly references to Waite in her celebrated Mysticism (1911) ..., but ... removed such references from later editions."

pp. 280-1 Robert Fludd as a source of Milton's theology

p. 280

"Williams ... felt a special attachment to the more religious poets, including ... Blake, and ... Milton. ... In 1925, Denis Saurat wrote [pp. 301-9] ...

p. 281

that Milton knew a great deal about ... {Qabbalah}, because he had studied the voluminous writings of the English Rosicrucian Robert Fludd. ... it remained for Christopher Hill to point out [pp. 5-6 & 493] that Milton ... found ... five of Fludd's books in the library of his own friend Nathan Paget.

Denis Saurat : Milton : man and thinker. NY : Dial Pr, 1925.

Christopher Hill : Milton and the American Revolution. NY : Viking, 1978.

pp. 281, 298-9 Blake, concerning Milton's true admiration for S`

p. 281

"Williams is most often quoted, and refuted, for his view that Milton's Satan is ... not at all the great Romantic hero that Blake made him out to be."

p. 298, n. 20

"In The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, Blake made his famous remark that "Milton's Messiah is call'd Satan" because Milton "was ... of the Devil's party

p. 299, n. 20

without knowing it" (plates 5-6). "Williams debunking of this view ... in The Image of the City (27) ... has been challenged by Helen Gardner (57)."

Helen Gardner : A Reading of Paradise Lost. Oxford : Clarendon, 1965.

pp. 281-5 heroines in Milton's Comus & in William's novels

p. 281

"Comus, whom Milton calls a juggler or necromancer, is presented as the son of Circe and Bacchus ...; and true to his parentage, he transforms men into beasts by getting them to drink from his magic cup ... . ... With a "Magick dust," he disguises himself ... and brings a lost lady to his bower. ... . ... he makes her a prisoner -- "all chain'd up ... In stony fetters fixt, and motionless" ... . ...

p. 282

The brothers save the lady with the help of a spirit, who brings the herb

Haemony, a version of Homer's moly {/molu/, brought by Hermes in the Odusseia} which seems to play on ... "hymen" ... .

{This word /haimon-/ hath the meaning 'bloody' (GM, vol. 2, p. 393a) -- perhaps an allusion to the blood from a broken hymen. Haimon was also the name of (GM 105.e) Iokaste's nephew, slain by the Sphinx 'Strangler' -- same meaning as for Skt. /THAG-/ (Thug), a name possibly cognate with /THEBAi/.}

The spirit summons the river goddess Sabrina {Severn river}, who restores the lady to life".

p. 283

"Milton's real addition to the Comus story is the failed seduction of the lady ... . ... the rescue is secured by a male spirit of the air, who brings an herb and summons a female spirit of the water named Sabrina." (Philostratos I.ii; Milton, Comus 44, 144, 789)

p. 284

"Characteristically, in Williams's fiction, a young woman is thrown into a trance ... . Thus we have

Barbara Rackstraw in War in Heaven,

Chloe Burnett in Many Dimensions,

Betty Wallingford in All Hallows' Eve.

A magician uses her in an attempt to gain possession of some occult end -- the Grail, the Philosophers' Stone, even immortality -- but ... The woman is rescued by an attendant spirit, in the first case, or by mortal friends, or even by a dead one in the last instance ... . There are ...

Nancy Coningsby in The Greater Trumps, ... when Gypsies try to get their hands on the original Tarot deck; ... also

Pauline in Descent into Hell, who is thrown into a curious inactivity by repeated encounters with her other self ...; or

the heroine of William's unfinished novel, The

p. 285

Noises That Weren't There, whose body becomes the locus of real or imagined noises, associated ... with magic".

Charles Williams : "The Noises That Weren't There" MYTHLORE 2 (autumn 1971):17-21; (winter 1972):21-5.

p. 288 Many Dimensions, Williams's novel about the Stone Which the Builders Rejected (or the Philosophers' Stone)

"Many Dimensions continues the cosmic conflict ... for control of a precious cube containing Tetragrammaton or four-letter name of God : the stone cast {as a meteor?} from heaven by a rebel angel, carried out of Paradise by Adam, passed from Nimrod to Solomon and so on to ... the Sultans of Islam. ... When Sir Giles brings the Stone from Baghdad, ... Lord Arglay ... enlists the aid of ... Chloe Burnet. He entrusts her with the Stone itself. ... Sir Giles visits Chloe astrally and, on looking into the Stone in her possession, realizes that the true Types are contained within the Stone, world within world. Lord Arglay persuades Chloe that ... the Types can be reincorporated into the Stone. She consents, and the effort renders her unconscious for nine months".

p. 289 The Place of the Lion, Williams's novel about the World of Ideal Forms

"The action in The Place of the Lion begins ... when the leader of a Pythagorean study group, Dr. Berringer {evidently based on the name of Dr Berridge (mentioned infra p. 312)}, ... meditates on the archetypal ideas that shaped the material world. He falls into a coma, and creatures begin to materialize everywhere :

a lioness,

a serpent,

swarms of butterfly,

an eagle, and more,

{cf. Tewa (ML40D) : cougaress (p. 9),

Sister Rattlesnake (p. 16),

butterflies (p. 77),

flying eagle (p. 44), etc.}

each one reflecting the inner condition of an observer. ... Meanwhile, a young [female] student of Pythagorean philosophy ... comes to know the eidola and angeli ...; her fiance' ... discovers what it was like for

Adam to name the creatures and thus gain dominion over them." [p. 299, n. 29 : "See The Place of the Lion ... 190-91 for the Adamic theory of names and things".]

{The naming of animals and of plants occurred on so-called “Naming Day in <eden” ("NDE").}

ML40D = Felicitas D. Goodman (authoress) : My Last Forty Days. Indiana U. Pr, Bloomington, 1997.

"NDE" = (review) & (another review) & (full text)

p. 289 The Greater Trumps, Williams's novel about the Tarot [Tarock]

"the action in The Greater Trumps ... begins when a young Gypsy discovers ... his fiance'e's father has ... a collection of Tarot packs. Suspecting that one set is the original, he wonders whether they would not bring a clairvoyance ... . To everyone's surprise, the ... fiance'e Nancy has a talent for seeing the dance of symbols in the Tarot pack ... . When she falls into a trance, she is able to manipulate the face cards, or Greater Trumps, as though they were marionettes. ... .

... the explanation for the young woman's power seems to be that she is the fool in the pack, "part of the mystery.""

p. 290 Shadows of Ecstasy, Williams's pro-African novel

"Sir Nigel Considine ... is ... a two-hundred-year-old "child of the initiates," whose father brought European magic to Africa ... . ... he intends to make his African subjects wage war against Europe; he hopes to purge Africa of foreign influence and make it "a continent where the [occult] schools may flourish, and the gospel of ecstasy may be born." By "ecstasy" he means a new stage in human evolution, ... beyond {Christian} religion and {Christian} art, which are "but the shadow of ecstasy." ... Considine ... tells Roger that the great poets were all searching for the secrets he knows, above all for the way through death to life."

pp. 291-2 All Hallows' Eve (London : Faber, 1945), William's futurist novel

p. 291

"Simon le Clerc is Jewish for a quite necessary reason : ... he knows of his namesake, Simon Magus, whose magic was ... wonder-working ... . ... His father, who lived two hundred years earlier, was ... a student of universal language principles whose special concern was the vibrations of the sounds of the alphabet. Simon has continued this study, and his ultimate act of magic is to utter the divine name backward, with all its vibrations ... . ... he has created two clones or "Types," which have preached his message in Russia and China;

he has also created a magical child, through whose eyes he looks into the future. ...

{This is a Taoist homunculus.}

p. 292

Williams may have known that Aleister Crowley called himself Simon in a roman a` clef which concerned the creation of a homunculus or "moonchild.""

"Jonathan paints with remarkable discernment. ... He knows that the Clerk does not understand his work in progress ...; but ... the surreal lighting precisely captures the heavenly City as Williams has just described it. [p. 58] ...

All Hallows is set in a future time, ... when ... people have begun to seek a personal or global peace. ... The novel begins in a half-lit world ..., the city painted in Jonathan's work in progress. This ... is first seen as a personal necropolis. Later it becomes a thronging place, containing all who ever lived ... in any city on earth, and finally it becomes the heavenly city toward which all life moves."


11. (pp. 303-21) Robert A. Gilbert : "The Golden Dawn in Popular Fiction".

pp. 303-4 the founding of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn

p. 303

"The Golden Dawn had been founded in March 1888 by

Dr. W. Wynn Westcott (1848-1925),

S. L. Macgregor Mathers (1854-1919), and

Dr. W. R. Woodman (1828-1891),

three prominent members of the Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia ... . Westcott, who was the prime mover, claimed to have received permission to

p. 304

found his order from one Anna Sprengel, the alleged Chief[ess] of an earlier continental Order, whose address he had found when deciphering a mysterious manuscript supposedly given to him by a masonic colleague." [p. 320, n. 1 : "The story of the cipher manuscript and of the "Anna Sprengel" letters is told at length in ... Ellic Howe's The Magicians of the Golden Dawn : a Documentary History of a Magical Order 1887-1923[. London : Routledge & K. Paul ], 1972".

"The Truth about the Cipher Manuscripts "

p. 304 stages, or Grades, of membership in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in the Outer


its numeric











pp. 304-5 the Inner, or Higher, Order

p. 304

"There are, of course, six more [numerics] ..., but the Grades appropriate to them lay in the wholly Rosicrucian Second Order, the Rosae Rubeae et Aureae Crucis, and in the ... Third Order {""Third Order" techniques ... of "Hermetic Inner Alchemy" ... involve sexuality" ("H&RT")} that lay beyond it. Only the most able members (roughly one in three) advanced to the Second Order where they learned the theory and practice of ritual magic ... . They were expected to understand and to practice ... the arts of Spirit Vision, Astral Projection ....,

p. 305

and the "Vibratory {trilling} Mode of pronouncing Divine Names"".

"H&RT" = "Hermetic & Rosicrucian Timeline" 1860

pp. 309-11 occult novels by Algernon Blackwood

p. 309

"Algernon Blackwood (1869-1951) ... entered the Order in 1900, ... and ... in ... 1908 ... brought ... in the character of

"John Silence",

{The country-name /Dumah/ 'Silence' (Strong's 1745-6) must allude to the "silence in heaven" (Apokalupsis of Ioannes 8:1) { judging from the fact that Dumah one of the offspring of Yis^ma<>el (1st Dbre^ ha-Yami^m 1:29-30); and the account of Yis^ma<>el and of his mother is likewise expounded in Apokalupsis of Ioannes, at 12:2-6}.}

Physician Extraordinary ... who heals the spiritually sick without charge."

{There is a balm in Gil<ad, to heal (Yirmyah 46:11) the sin-sick soul.}

p. 310

""John Silence" is dedicated "To M.L.W. The original of John Silence ..." : ... but ... the initials do not correspond to those of either the name or motto of any member of the Order."

{This fictitious name may indicate the /MLO^>/ ('Fullness', Strong's 4393) = Pleroma of Mas^iyah./Khristos. Such Pleroma is reckoned as the full list of names of the aiones, in Valentinian Gnostic theology.}

p. 311

Blackwood's "novel, The Human Chord (1910), tells the story of a strange clergyman, ... named Philip Skale, who seeks to discover the true pronunciation of the Tetragrammaton ..., and having discovered it, to do what is forbidden : to utter it aloud." [i.e., to call by name]

{In mt. Gil<ad, the fleeing Ya<qob was overtaken (B-re>s^it 31:25), after Ya<qob had fled at the behest of (B-re>s^it 31:13-18) the god who called the dreaming Ya<qob by name (B-re>s^it 31:11; cf. the S^mu^->el's name being praeternaturally called while he was awakening out of dreams, in 1st S^mu^>el 3).}

p. 312 parody-names for Golden-Dawn leaders in Aleister Crowley's Moonchild

true name

parodic name







pp. 312-3 occult stories & novels by Dion Fortune

p. 312

"Dion Fortune (Violet Firth, 1890-1946) ... drew upon her own experiences in the Stella Matutina (one of the branches of the Order, founded after the schism of 1903) to produce the psychic ... stories that were published as The Secrets of Dr Taverner (1926). ... . ... Taverner ...

p. 313

describes the work of his Order, involving Spirit Vision, Astral Projection, burrowing among the Akashic Records and implicitly accepting Reincarnation ... . The Order, still unnamed, also features in three of Dion Fortune's novels :

The Demon Lover (1927);

The Sea Priestess (1938); and

Moon Magic (1956, published posthumously)".

p. 313 occult story by Margery Lawrence

"Miles Pennoyer, the creation of Margery Lawrence (d. 1969) ... is a member of an esoteric Order. In the first collection of Pennoyer stories, Number Seven Queer Street (1945), "The Case of the Moonchild" involves ... Father Aloysius, a powerful black magician who strives to bring an alien entity to birth through a virginal human body. At the climax of the story, Pennoyer appears ... :

I remember that he shone from head to foot, from the spreading halo-like rays that blazed about his head to the long robes ... -- and lo, beside him and around him were Those which it is given to few to see ... . I had never seen or heard of them ... . (193)"

pp. 313-4 occult novel by Evelyn Underhill

p. 313

"In the last of her three novels Evelyn Underhill (1875-1941), who was for some time a member of A. E. Waite's "Independent and Rectified Rite", describes a magical ritual ... used by the heroine of The Column of Dust (1911) ...

p. 314

taken from a copy of the "Grand Grimoire" ... . ... Miss Underhill's heroine ... must learn the magical value of sounds :

Constance was now impelled to chant, in a loud tone and with a grave intent and crescent {crescendo} determination, the strange old Hebrew spell. The words drew from her ... a long and rhythmic cry; a wailing music,

with curious ululative prolongations of the vowel sounds. ... (16)

{This manner of vocalization is, reputedly, Kemetic.}

The ritual works and ... an alien spirit becomes entrapped in her body : the working out of their dual salvation provides the theme of the novel".

pp. 316-7 writings by Dennis Wheatley

p. 316

"the black magic novels of Dennis Wheatley (1897-1977). The first of these, The Devil Rides Out (1935), ... is drawn from ... the ...

'Saaamaaa Ritual' used twenty-five years earlier by Carnacki, the psychic ... created by the English ... writer William Hope Hodgson (1877-1918).

{SAAMi = Lapp (of Lappland, northern Scandinavia); or else [Skt.] /SAMAn/ 'sacred chant'}

In The Devil Rides Out the "Unknown Last Line" of the ritual becomes "the two last lines of

the dread Sussamma Ritual,"

{perhaps [Skt.] /SUS.] 'to procreate' + [Skt.] /SAMMi/ 'to fasten together'}

pronounced by the Duc de Richleau in order to save himself and his companions from the Angel of Death. ...

In his ... non-fiction work The Devil and All his Works (1971), Wheatley lists the grades, which he derived from Crowley's Magick in Theory and Practice (1929). ... .

... in To the Devil a Daughter [1953] ... Colonel Verney ... is ... asked by the Canon ..., what grade he holds, Verney replies, "I have eight circles and three squares," indicating that he is a Magister Templi and thus "past the Abyss." ... . ... the Canon then informs him :

p. 317

... But since you are an adept of the S. S. [i.e. Silver Star, Crowley's Argenteum Astrum] with only two circles to gain and two squares to lose before reaching the highest plane of the Order, I see nothing against acceding to your request ..., though ... it is the greatest of all the Great Works. (219)"

pp. 317-8 occult-literature sources of Lovecraft's novels

p. 317

"In 1927 an obscure American literary journal, The Recluse, published an essay on "Supernatural Horror in Literature" by H. P. Lovecraft (1890-1937)."

"Dion Fortune's ... robed and mitred figure of Tavener, as he appears in "The Power House," would have been a perfect inspiration for the description of the priest of the "Esoteric Order of Dagon" that is such a crucial feature of Lovecraft's story, "The Shadow over Innsmouth" (1931)."

p. 318

"the "Starry Wisdom" sect which features in another of Lovecraft's tales, "The Haunter of the Dark" (1936) ... had carried out evocations of an alien entity by means of a "Shining Trapezohedron" contained in a "box found in great Egyptian ruins," their secret rituals being conducted in a converted, and now deserted, church : ... a metal box ... holding ... an egg-shaped ... object ... . ...

This setting would also have been appropriate for the occult workings of the "Sphere Group" within the R.R. et A.C. ... :

[quoted from MGD, p. 247 :] ... the symbols were adapted from the Star Maps ... projected on a sphere, ... and a certain Egyptian astral form was supposed to occupy the centre.

Lovecraft's "shining trapezohedron" and its box also bear a resemblance to the ill-omened casket depicted on the pictorial title-page of Mather's The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abra-Melin the Mage (1898)".

MGD = Howe : The Magicians of the Golden Dawn.

p. 319 by George MacGill

"The Nameless Order [London : John Lane, 1924], written under the pseudonym


{referring to the DARGiN tribe in the Kaukasos mountain-range?}

by Sir George MacGill (d. 1926). The Order engages in "a world conspiracy bestriding the centuries," its aim being to abolish "... private property {i.e., greed}, thrones {i.e., vainglorious display}, aristocracies {i.e., unconscionable haughtiness} and even nationalities {i.e., intolerant nationalisms}. ..." It ... is referred to as the "Red Star" and is stated to have been "revived in this country in the early [eighteen-]eighties.""

p. 320, n. 8 the Palladium

"From 1891 onwards, under the pseudonyms of "Leo Taxil" and "Dr. Bataille," a radical French journalist, Gabriel Jogand-Pages, and a colleague of Dr. Charles Hacks, published a series of sensational articles describing the doings of the "Palladium," an alleged satanic Order of Freemasons. The most popular of their works were

Le Diable au XIXe Siecle Paris : Delhomme et Briguet, 1892-94 and

Memoires d'Une Ex-Palladiste, by "Diana Vaughan" Paris : Librairie Antimac,onnique/Pierret, 1895-97 ... .

Eventually Jogand-Pages publicly pronounced the whole affair to have been a hoax designed to discomfit the Catholic Church".


12. (pp. 322-38) Paul Rich : "Kim and the Magic House : Freemasonry and Kipling".

p. 322 the Masonic Middle Way

"Dr Enamul ... in the Kipling Journal ... went so far as to claim that "Kim develops a new vision of the Middle Way different from the Buddhistic doctrine : it is the Masonic Middle Way".

Enamul Karim : "The River of the Arrow". KIPLING JOURNAL, March 1981, 48:217,26.

p. 323 Freemasonry in novels (and in poe:ms) by Rudyard Kipling

"Anyone passingly familiar with Masonry can locate its thrasonical bijouterie in On the Great Wall, The Winged Hat, Hal o' the Draft, and The City Wall.

Indeed, The Butterfly that Stamped in the Just So Stories frequently appears with the illustration created by John Lockwood Kipling, Rudyard's father -- a terracotta plaque of King Solomon bedecked in Masonic apron, sash, and decorations.

Many of the poems employ Masonic allusions, including more conspicuously The Palace, Banquet Night, The Widow of Windsor, Rough Ashlar, and the oft quoted The Mother-Lodge : with the lines ... An' I was Junior Deacon in my Mother-Lodge out there!"

pp. 324-5, 336 Freemasonry as Rudyard Kipling's, and likewise his father's, religion (whilest disparaging Christianity)

p. 324

"Marghanita Laski in her innovative study From Palm to Pine (1987) indicates that the lodge was the nearest thing for him to religion".

p. 325

"The harsh depiction of [Christian] religion seems to support the proposition that Kiping found more satisfaction in Masonry than he did in [Christian] churches. Angus Wilson has proposed as much in The Strange Ride of Rudyard Kipling ... . ... Seymour-Smith ... suggests [1990, p. 112] that "He met people of all creeds in Freemasonry, in order to satisfy his religious eclectism, and he also tried to find in Freemasonry a secret society for the advancement and preservation of humanity

such as his idol Cecil Rhodes, another homosexual, seriously suggested".

{Surely M.S-S. must have approved of "the advancement and preservation of humanity"; but, knowing that the English government, being an inhumane and inhuman system of despotism, strongly disapproveth of the advancement and preservation of humanity, therefore M.S-S. concealed his secret approval (as many an author must do in England) under a feigned disapproval, which took the guise of praetending that he believed that Kipling and "his idol" were both tainted with something supposely repraehensible (in this case homosexuality).}

p. 336, n. 5

"Just as Edward Gibbon, born a hundred years before, had written about ... his forebears ... 'whom Christianity had seriously injured', so it was with John Kipling." (Ankers 1988, p. 145)

Marghanita Laski : From Palm to Pine : Rudyard Kipling Abroad and At Home. Facts on File, NY, 1987.

Seymour-Smith 1990 = Martin Seymour-Smith : Rudyard Kipling. Macmillan.

Ankers 1988 = Arthur R. Ankers : The Pater. Otford : Pond View.

p. 327 Kipling's book Kim

"By the time the book was completed -- it had lain aside for years, part of the mysterious never published and now lost 'Mother of All Stories' titled Mother Maturin -- a mature Kipling had doubts about belief in belief."

p. 333 Rudyard Kipling's stories of fellowship of humanity in Freemasonry

[quoted from SRRK, pp. 414-5 :] "it is most interesting that when he wanted, in his last years, to bring a variety of men together, to emphasize the underlying fellowship of humanity, to give men some bond of play and ritual that could relieve them from the ... confining disciplines of caste and rank and class and race ..., he should have turned again to the Freemasonry which had been one of his principal releases from the sharp divisions of British India."

SRRK = Angus Wilson : The Strange Ride of Rudyard Kipling. NY : Granada, 1977.


AMS STUDIES IN CULTURAL HISTORY, No. 1 = Marie Mulvey Roberts & Hugh Ormsby-Lennon : Secret Texts : the Literature of Secret Societies. AMS Pr, NY, 1995.