The Thelemic Order is a non-profit organization and Church, incorporated in the State of Delaware. US EIN 84-3433327.
The Thelemic Order serves a worldwide mission to promulgate the Law of Thelema. As a Thelemic Church TTO is Progressive and Heterodox.
TTO is explicitly progressive in that we reject any interpretation of Thelema which fuels intolerance, including racism, white nationalism, misogyny and classism, while practicing tolerance by enthusiastically embracing modern models of gender, sexual identity, and consent.
Heterodox is the opposite of orthodox. Where orthodox means doing things one way, heterodox means doing things many ways. Thelema is syncretic by nature, and what is interesting, healthy, and respectful for one person's practice may not fit another. We empower our Clergy and Members to experiment and do those things which have personal meaning to them, rather than adhering to a strict formula.
TTO is divided into three Elements
The Order General is the secular or lay-leadership of TTO. The Order General is headed by a Secretary-General who will be elected from among the dues-paying membership, and focuses on creating a safe space and good resources for personal exploration of the relgion and philosophy of Thelema, particularly in providing a positive space for the exploration of magic and ritual alone and in cooperation with others.
The Heterodox Gnostic Church or Ecclesia Gnostica Heterodoxa (EGH) is the branch of TTO which conducts training of Clergy, Ordination, holds Mass, offers the Sacrements and organizes the Canon of TTO.
The Initiatory Arm is the branch of TTO which conducts the Thelemic Initiations, which are designed to be a modern system of powerful initiatory experiences for Thelemites.
The Abbey of Al Qiyamah facilitates a Chartered Lodge of The Thelemic Order, located in Central, New York
Ecclesia Gnostica Heterodoxa
The Ecclesia Gnostica Heterodoxa
Style of the EGH
• Ecclesia Gnostica Heterodoxa
• Εκκλησία Γνωστική Ετερoδοξή
• Heterodox Gnostic Church
The concept of a modern Gnostic Church dates to 19th century France, most specifically to Jules Doinel and the Martinist Order. The Latinization dates either to Bricaud about 1906, or
Crowley in 1913. We have maintained it because we feel it communicates tradition and origin better than an Anglicization, however both terms may be used. We chose to use the term “Heterodox” meaning the opposite of “Orthodox” in order to emphasize the eclectic and living nature of the EGH. Heterodox has no perfect equivalent in
English, as “unorthodox” has a different connotation, and “nonconformist,” relates to a specific
group of English, Protestant, Christian churches. Throughout the classical era and the middle ages, many Greek and other terms were Latinized, and there is ample precedent for “heterodoxa” as a Latinization of Ετερoδοξή.
The Function of the Ecclesia Gnostica Heterodoxa
As The Thelemic Order exists to provide a community in order that its members may pursue a path of personal development, the EGH focuses specifically on offering guidance in finding a personal, spiritual, path. The EGH recognizes that a shared environment, guidance, and mentorship may be useful for
personal exploration. The EGH recognizes that while some struggle can be healthy, the world deals an endless series of struggles, while guidance and mentorship may be best provided in a context where peace
and amity are more prevalent than not. For that reason, the EGH has published the Articles of Understanding in order to gather in a large tent all those Thelemites who share certain general
understandings of Thelema.
The EGH makes no claim to be the One Gnostic and Catholic Church of Light, Life, Love and Liberty, nor the sole heir to the true church of old time.
The EGH is a focused Spiritual Path within the Thelemic Order. From an administrative perspective, participation in the EGH is not necessary to grow and learn within the Thelemic Order. Various individuals and authorities within the organization may have different opinions on the centrality or importance of the Thelemic Mass, and of the EGH, however there is no
official stance within the Order General. Advancement within the Initiatory Branch is not tied to advancement within the EGH.
Heterdox Gnostic Church is the Ecclesiastical arm of The Thelemic Order. The EGH ordains Clergy and performs sacraments for Thelemites.
This section lays out a broad outline, however anyone wishing to become a novice or aspire to ordination should read the full description.
Prelates - Prelates are members of the College of Prelates, and are generally accorded the title of "Bishop" after their elevation or consecration. As with most titles in TTO, the exact choice is somewhat at the discretion of the individual.
The College of Prelates makes decisions concerning the Ordination of Clergy, generally through an Ordination Committee.
The College of Prelates elects a Pontifex, who is the Chair and leader of the College, and serves for a term of two years.
The College of Prelates sets the official Canon and selects rituals and ceremonies as "official" rituals of EGH
Clergy - Clergy are official representatives of EGH. They have initial and continuing educational requirements
Clergy may lead all rituals and ceremonies of TTO, administer all sacraments, saving Ordination, which is reserved to the College of Prelates, and Attainment which is not administered.
Unlike some other Thelemic and pagan organizations, all Ordained Clergy are, like their counterparts in most Christian Churches, eligible to be sponsored for actual legal ministerial status, and receive aid in acquiring such status, in their US State or other place of residence. In States where TTO does not yet have a presence, TTO will work with local clergy to establish the necessary local structure to receive legal ministerial status.
While TTO encourages mentorship, and hopes Clergy will develop close relations with each other and Prelates, there is no formal system of apprenticeship. Clergy Petition the College for Ordination, and may be subject to impartial examination.
Clergy have administrative duties including reporting administration of the sacraments, and other rituals and ceremonies.
Novice Clergy - Confirmed members of the EGH may enter into Novitiate Training by submitting a Declaration of Intent to the Secretary of the College of Prelates. In respect to the individual nature of Thelema, there are no formal requirements to submit a Petition for Ordination, however it is expected that the Novice must undertake Mastery in three Qualities:
Administration - the Novice must show basic competence necessary to ensure the ability to complete those functions of Clergy which involve the recording of events, and adherence to formal regulation.
Ritualism - the Novice must show competence and expertise at the performance of the rituals of the Order, both by performing scripted material, and showing an appropriate ability to deal with improvisation or adversity.
Demeanor - the Novice must show that they are able to interact with their siblings in a way which is respectful and exemplifies love.
Novice Clergy may, like all Clergy, develop and perform their own liturgy or variants on liturgy, provided that they have completed all relevant and current safety and consent training.