THE
ARCANE
ARCHIVE

a cache of usenet and other text files pertaining
to occult, mystical, and spiritual subjects.


TOP | YRONWODE | ARCANE ARCHIVE.ORG | OCCULTISM | DIVINATION | TAROT

GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR B.O.T.A. STUDY GROUPS

[from ftp://ftp.dragon.org/pub/pfcase/archives/ ]

According to Steve Cranmer's excellent FAQ on The Golden Dawn:

* Builders of the Adytum (B.O.T.A.)
  5101-05 North Figueroa St.,  Los Angeles, CA  90042  TEL (800)255-0041

  [Established 1922 as an "outer vehicle of the inner school," probably
  descended from the original (Chicago) Thoth-Hermes Temple.  See Paul
  Foster Case's _True_and_Invisible_Rosicrucian_Order_, and his other
  books.  Free brochure available.  Correspondence course.  For the first
  year or so, one pays $10/month, and obtains a self-initiation ritual,
  seven weeks of instruction on "Hermetic Philosophy," then about a year
  of Tarot instruction.  The Tarot material is highly recommended.]

========================================================================


and from: Keith Tannler, Regional Councilor [of BOTA]

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Subject: GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR B.O.T.A. STUDY GROUPS

1.   To attain standing as an official B.O.T.A. study group, a group must
     show that:
     (a)  It is committed to the teachings of B.O.T.A.
     (b)  It desires to abide by the principles embodied in those
          teachings.
     (c)  It is willing to conform to these guidelines.
     (d)  And it will cheerfully accept and carry out specific instruc
          tions given by the Regional Councilor.

2.   Primary purposes of the group:
     First and foremost, to encourage the development of fraternal love
     and harmony.

     To be a source of strength and encouragement for members on the Path
     of Return.

     To provide an opportunity to interact with others who share the same
     spiritual teachings and practices, mutually benefiting from the
     education group work offers.

     To foster the development of consciousness as set forth in the
     B.O.T.A. curriculum.

     To help incorporate the principles of Ageless Wisdom in everyday
     life.

     To enjoy together the operation of the One Will in all the circum
     stances of our lives.

     To provide an open door to the Mysteries to all who genuinely seek
     them.

     To be a support for new members of B.O.T.A. rather than a meeting
     place for self-presumed "advanced" members further in the course
     work.

3.   Financial support:
     No set fees or charges shall be made. If the group needs to pay or
     share rent and/or utilities, or make any other expenditures
     appropriate, then the group participants should share the expenses
     through voluntary contributions. No members shall benefit whatsoever
     from any other member of the group.

4.   Who may attend:
     All guests should be welcomed with love and respect. Because study
     group discussions are centered on the B.O.T.A. teachings, those who
     attend regularly should be encouraged, but NEVER pressured, to
     become members of B.O.T.A., thus making the curriculum available to
     them.

5.   Meeting place:
     It is helpful to have one consistent meeting place where there can
     be a build-up of positive, meditative energies. A single, impartial
     meeting place such as a rented room, hall, etc...) is preferable. If
     this is not possible, then meetings may be held temporarily at the
     home of a member.

6.   Date and time of meetings:
     A consistent, regular meeting time should be established. Meetings
     may occur weekly, twice a month, or monthly, depending on the needs
     and desires of the members. The important point is that the meetings
     should always take place on the same day of the week and at the same
     time, thus establishing a rhythmic cycle.

7.   Meeting format:
     A format should be set by group consensus. The following are basic
     suggestions that have proVed to be of great value and efficiency in
     group work:
     (a)  In order to attune the group to higher levels of Spiritual
          Energies, the beginning of each meeting should include an
          appropriately paced and thoughtful recitation of the Pattern on
          the Trestleboard.
     (b)  The B.O.T.A. Tarot Keys and Tree of Life should be systemati
          cally used as aids to visualization, since they work directly
          on the subconsciousness of each group member, and are an
          invaluable support for meditation.
     (c)  The members of the group should be encouraged to paint a set of
          Tarot Keys, thereby gaining a greater advantage in collective
          imaging.
     (d)  Each meeting should have a central focus, chosen by the group
          co-ordinator and the members, within the frame work given in #8
          below.
     (e)  All members should be encouraged to participate in the
          discussion, and gently reminded to remain on the subject.
          Written papers and well-prepared talks are always desirable.
     (f)  Meditations should be silent. Guided meditations should be
          given by Ministers or authorized members only. The use of
          B.O.T.A. Tarot Keys and the Tree of Life is always of great
          help; a reading from the Book of Tokens is also appropriate.
     (g)  A period of socializing provides an opportunity for members of
          the group to interact and share on a more personal level.
     (h)  The experience of other current and previous study group co-
          ordinators should be shared, providing a rich variety of format
          possibilities. Your Regional Councilor is able to put you in
          touch with them.

8.   Content of discussions:
     Presentations and discussions are to be based on the first seven
     courses of the B.O.T.A. curriculum (Seven Steps through the Tree of
     Life), and the material available in the B.O.T.A. catalog. These
     lessons are the basic building blocks of the Esoteric Wisdom, and
     are inexhaustible in their impact and information. However, these
     lessons, as well as other material from the B.O.T.A. catalog, should
     not be read at the meetings. The emphasis should always be put on
     accurate determination of the Principles involved. Discussions
     should center on the exploration, verification and application of
     these Principles in daily life, as they are understood by the
     individual, through study and meditation.

     The goal the group is to create altogether an atmosphere which will
     allow all individuals to interact and contribute at their own level
     of development and understanding, on how to apply the Principles of
     the Work as explained in the lessons.

     Subsequent B.O.T.A. lessons are to be used only for private study,
     because their use in the group could not benefit those who are just
     beginning their studies, and would add to a sense of "separateness"
     between them and members receiving earlier lessons.

     As mentioned above, the lessons comprising Seven Steps through the
     Tree of Life include more than enough material for any aspirant,
     whether a life long member or a beginner in B.O.T.A. Study group

     discussions should be held on a level at which a new-comer finds
     applicable knowledge. Permanent growth is only accomplished step by
     step.

9.   Cautions:
     (a)  Psychic activity: Psychic phenomena may occur in individuals
          who have the genetic disposition for it, but it should be seen
          as a side effect in the process of the transmutation and
          purification of the personality. However, encouraging psychic
          activity almost always results in stultifying one's growth, and
          actually causing harm. Emphasis on this phase of development
          detracts from the main purposes and goals of the group, and
          diminishes its effectiveness. Discussion, stimulation or
          demonstration of psychic activities, powers or phenomenon are
          not allowed (for example; mediumship, aura reading, divination,
          "channeling" etc...).
     (b)  Discussion of Individual problems and spiritual experiences:
          This should be limited to determining the principles involved.
          An individual is responsible for solutions and actions in
          his/her own life, and only this person can solve his/her
          problems - with the help of the Higher Self, of course. The
          group should not become a psychotherapy session, the only
          exception being the therapeutic side-effects created by
          fraternal love, harmony and support shared within the group.
     (c)  Personal privacy: Names and addresses of group members or
          individuals should not be divulged without the consent of the
          members. Similarly, interviews and/or audio-visual sessions are
          not allowed during meetings.
     (d)  Soliciting: Study group meetings cannot be used for business or
          personal promotion, even during social interchange after the
          meetings. Study groups are not places where services or
          materials of any kind are sold for profit.
     (e)  Mixed teachings: The focus of group work must be kept on the
          principles set forth in the B.O.T.A. lessons. Care should be
          taken to regularly recall that the group is a B.O.T.A. study
          group.
     (f)  Intellectual and emotional expressions within the group should
          be monitored by the study group co-ordinator in order to avoid
          uncontrolled outbursts of personal or collective emotions, and
          unbalanced intellectual emphasis that lacks andy normal quality
          of heart or soul.

10.  Record keeping:
     There should be some basic form of record keeping. This might
     include the names of participating members, a record of attendance,
     course of study, etc... Basic records of expenses and income should
     also be kept.

11.  Continuity in the Work:
     As in Pronaos, an assistant co-ordinator should be trained, so that
     the regular study group co-ordinator can be substituted for or
     replaced as need be.

     In order to give group leaders a deeper understanding of the purpose
     and format of a study group, here are some excerpts from Ann Davies
     personal correspondence to B.O.T.A. study groups:

     "Each week, one class member will prepare a five minute talk on the
     Tarot Key of the evening, giving personal experiences, problems,
     aids, insights, etc... which that particular Key has brought. No
     member will be forced to take such an assignment. Acceptance of the
     assignment will be on a voluntary basis. Some members are to shy to
     participate on verbal levels at first, and we feel that time will
     help to melt away such feelings of insecurity."

     "Following the five minute talk, all members will enter into open
     discussion of the particular Tarot Key of the evening, sharing
     whatever their hearts or questioning urge them to share. This will
     develop a group spirit of mutual love and understanding, as problems
     are participated in together, in fraternal love and acceptance."
     "The above procedure is expected to train leaders of B.O.T.A. Many
     potentials remain undeveloped for lack of opportunities to uncover
     hidden talents."

     "Always remember, dear ones, that the discussion part of your
     meetings is aimed at giving you a free flow of expression and
     sharing, one with the other. Every human soul is unique. No two
     human beings can possibly see life from the same point of view, for
     each of us is a particular way that God experiences the myriad
     miracles of experience. Each of us, therefore, will see in a Tarot
     Key that which is our own unique contribution. For this reason, none
     of us must attempt the slightest criticism or correction of a fellow
     aspirants's presentation in the five minute talks given by each of
     the members. The talks and the general discussion are for the
     purpose of sharing! Of trying to understand each other! Of learning
     how to accept each other in the fullest measure! Please, keep this
     ever utmost in your minds and hearts, and thus will you encourage
     each other to be willing to share the unique treasures and contribu
     tions which a fellow Aspirant is endeavoring to give. Thus will each
     and every one of you be encouraged to give fuller outer expression
     coming from your inner awarenesses."

EOF

The Arcane Archive is copyright by the authors cited.
Send comments to the Arcane Archivist: tyaginator@arcane-archive.org.

Did you like what you read here? Find it useful?
Then please click on the Paypal Secure Server logo and make a small
donation to the site maintainer for the creation and upkeep of this site.

The ARCANE ARCHIVE is a large domain,
organized into a number of sub-directories,
each dealing with a different branch of
religion, mysticism, occultism, or esoteric knowledge.
Here are the major ARCANE ARCHIVE directories you can visit:
interdisciplinary: geometry, natural proportion, ratio, archaeoastronomy
mysticism: enlightenment, self-realization, trance, meditation, consciousness
occultism: divination, hermeticism, amulets, sigils, magick, witchcraft, spells
religion: buddhism, christianity, hinduism, islam, judaism, taoism, wicca, voodoo
societies and fraternal orders: freemasonry, golden dawn, rosicrucians, etc.

SEARCH THE ARCANE ARCHIVE

There are thousands of web pages at the ARCANE ARCHIVE. You can use ATOMZ.COM
to search for a single word (like witchcraft, hoodoo, pagan, or magic) or an
exact phrase (like Kwan Yin, golden ratio, or book of shadows):

Search For:
Match:  Any word All words Exact phrase

OTHER ESOTERIC AND OCCULT SITES OF INTEREST

Southern Spirits: 19th and 20th century accounts of hoodoo, including slave narratives & interviews
Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by cat yronwode: an introduction to African-American rootwork
Lucky W Amulet Archive by cat yronwode: an online museum of worldwide talismans and charms
Sacred Sex: essays and articles on tantra yoga, neo-tantra, karezza, sex magic, and sex worship
Sacred Landscape: essays and articles on archaeoastronomy, sacred architecture, and sacred geometry
Lucky Mojo Forum: practitioners answer queries on conjure; sponsored by the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.
Herb Magic: illustrated descriptions of magic herbs with free spells, recipes, and an ordering option
Association of Independent Readers and Rootworkers: ethical diviners and hoodoo spell-casters
Freemasonry for Women by cat yronwode: a history of mixed-gender Freemasonic lodges
Missionary Independent Spiritual Church: spirit-led, inter-faith, the Smallest Church in the World
Satan Service Org: an archive presenting the theory, practice, and history of Satanism and Satanists
Gospel of Satan: the story of Jesus and the angels, from the perspective of the God of this World
Lucky Mojo Usenet FAQ Archive: FAQs and REFs for occult and magical usenet newsgroups
Candles and Curios: essays and articles on traditional African American conjure and folk magic
Aleister Crowley Text Archive: a multitude of texts by an early 20th century ceremonial occultist
Spiritual Spells: lessons in folk magic and spell casting from an eclectic Wiccan perspective
The Mystic Tea Room: divination by reading tea-leaves, with a museum of antique fortune telling cups
Yronwode Institution for the Preservation and Popularization of Indigenous Ethnomagicology
Yronwode Home: personal pages of catherine yronwode and nagasiva yronwode, magical archivists
Lucky Mojo Magic Spells Archives: love spells, money spells, luck spells, protection spells, etc.
      Free Love Spell Archive: love spells, attraction spells, sex magick, romance spells, and lust spells
      Free Money Spell Archive: money spells, prosperity spells, and wealth spells for job and business
      Free Protection Spell Archive: protection spells against witchcraft, jinxes, hexes, and the evil eye
      Free Gambling Luck Spell Archive: lucky gambling spells for the lottery, casinos, and races