Archive for the ‘thelema’ Tag

Interview With The Werewolf Cathedral High Priest!   Leave a comment

I recently read a blog by Ananael Quaa about The Werewolf Cathedral. I didn’t really like what I read so I thought I would link him to my article about The Werewolf Cathedral. Here was his reply:

“I don’t have any problem with the group’s basic philosophy in terms of their conception of their relationship to nature. I’m a Thelemite and my philosophy is based on accepting my essential nature as it really is too, so there’s not a lot for me to disagree with on that front.

I just think it’s silly that they refer to themselves as “werewolves.” In regular English usage the word means a person who can physically transform into a wolf, not somebody who “embraces their animal nature” or some such. That’s a completely different meaning, and it seems to me like the group is trying to reclaim “werewolf” merely on the grounds that it aligns them with a pop culture trend.

Maybe that sort of cynical marketing strategy will work for them and they will in fact become a force in the occult community. I would warn them, though, to be careful that their adoption of pop culture ideas does not lead them to inadvertently support the idea that Paganism is some sort of fashion accessory instead of a real spiritual practice. There’s too much of that out there already. “

For some reason this just didn’t set well with me at all. So I decided to email The Werewolf Cathedral and ask if I could interview someone there for my blog. They agreed and I was put in contact with Christopher Belmont Johnson the High Priest of the organization. Below is a transcription of the interview.

Greg Henderson: Good afternoon Mr. Johnson. Is it true that TWC is merely trying to profit from pop culture trends?

Christopher Belmont Johnson: Not at all. These rumors are started by people that see the word Werewolf and think of the movies like twilight and make an assumption that there is somehow a link when in fact there is none. In fact after I founded TWC I discovered the twilight movie and almost abandoned the entire TWC concept because I knew people would make that assumption without educating themselves to the facts. Something told me however that I shouldn’t let small minded people like that stop me, and use my idea to benefit the Pagan community. If you actually take a good look at what we are about we are diametrically opposed to almost all the pop werewolf notions. So I fail to see how I could be using TWC merely to be trendy. In fact it makes more sense to me that I am anti trend in regards to the Werewolf.

Greg Henderson: Did you merely adopt the Werewolf symbol because it is a pop culture idea?

Christopher Belmont Johnson: Not at all. In fact there Werewolf is not a pop culture idea at all it is a very old idea. In fact the Catholic church used to burn people at the stake for being Werewolves just like they did Witches. The truth of the matter was those “Werewolves” were just magicians. So you can see a type of alignment between the Werewolf and Witchcraft. The Werewolf has been around a lot longer than pop culture and if pop culture chooses to adopt something as the flavor of the day I’m not so feeble as to let that shackle me. The fad will come and go but we will still be around.

Greg Henderson: Do you support the idea that Paganism is some sort of fashion accessory instead of a real spiritual practice.

Christopher Belmont Johnson: Absolutely not! Paganism is a very deep form of spirituality and spiritual practice that covers a lot of areas. Some of the deepest being theurgical experiences with the Gods and Goddesses of Paganism. It is a way to live in tune with nature and to use nature to benefit yourself and others. It should be given the deepest respect and taken very very seriously. It is something to be lived everyday as Raymond Buckland says in his book on Scottish Witchcraft. People seem to get this notion in there head that because we use the word Werewolf we are trying to capitalize on a modern trend in media. WE AREN’T! The word Werewolf was used to describe magicians in the past. Also learning to astral travel as a Were creature is part of Witchcraft as well. We are merely using the term Werewolf as a archetypical representation of our views in a symbolic way. In other words if you asked me to show you a symbol which sums up the whole of our ideology I would show you a Werewolf. Those that think we are trying to be trendy are victims of the trend themselves. They have become the voice box of the trend and speak it’s mantras like trained sheep. The truth is I can’t wait for the Werewolf trend to die out. It causes more trouble then you might imagine. The people that want to ramble on about trendiness and pop culture need to quit watching so much television.

Greg Henderson: Why do you think TWC has gotten so much bad press.

Christopher Belmont Johnson: There are a lot of contributing factors. One the internet is a place where anyone can say anything. In the real world they would know better because their would be immediate consequences. Another is the lack of respect the youth have overall and their ability to mouth off unchecked over the internet. Another is flat out jealousy and stupidity. The other is close mindedness and the simple fact they don’t want to take the time to educate themselves because it’s easier to pass judgment based on assumptions. Another is that it is new and people are afraid of change.

Greg Henderson: I noticed you are a church of satan member. Are you a Satanist?

Christopher Belmont Johnson: Funny I just wrote an article about this. The answer is NO! I use my CoS membership for marketing purposes and yes it has worked. I respect Anton LaVey a great deal, but I also disagree with aspects of his religion and am strong enough in my character to state so. When you research what Satan is, a prosecuting attorney for god (read job), you see how utterly ridiculous it is to call yourself a satanist in the context of Anton LaVey’s bible. To me a Satanist is a just a pagan that can’t let go of Christianity.

Greg Henderson: So you are a Pagan?

Christopher Belmont Johnson: Yes I am a Pagan. I practice my own tradition which I founded in the same way others have before me.

Greg Henderson: What do you think of ritual magicians that put down TWC so much?

Christopher Belmont Johnson: They all have the same “I am a superior HIGH magician attitude.” Unless a ritual takes forever and follows some so called ancient classical grimoire, crowley, or the golden dawn they do not believe it is powerful. They need to research Greece more. As Monte Plaisance says in his book “A Witch is a magician of the highest order practicing high magick.” The funniest experience I ever had with a ritual magician was when I asked him how to break a curse. He had been practicing for many years and still didn’t know. I have personally witnessed members of ritual magick orders get affected very harshly by one witch’s simple candle spell. Bottom line they are arrogant and close minded. I must state however not all ritual magician’s are like that. Those are the ones that are adults.

Greg Henderson: Why did you decide to make TWC?

Christopher Belmont Johnson: To share my practice, teach it, and improve Paganism over all.

Greg Henderson: Thank you for you time Mr. Johnson I believe I have learned a lot about TWC and you as well. Blessed Be.

Christopher Belmont Johnson: Thank you so much for taking the time to ask questions and not make assumptions as so many have. Blessed be!

The reality of The Werewolf Cathedral   4 comments

Over the last month or two I have been hearing a lot of buzz about a group called “The Werewolf Cathedral.” And most of it seems pretty bad. So I did what any self respecting Occultist would do, I investigated for myself. What I have found, I feel, will not make most of the authors of these nasty reviews happy. I have come to the conclusion that most if not all of these reviews and articles where written by people that didn’t fully research The Werewolf Cathedral’s site. For instant I heard a very immature and poorly done podcast claim, as well as other places, that this group hates Wiccans. What their site in fact says is that they discourage members from joining “Feminist based male bashing Wicca groups.” I personally do not have a problem with this, in fact there are many in the occult community, including Wiccans, who have a problem with Dianic Wicca, which is in fact what The Werewolf Cathedral is referring to. To make matters worse for these authors, they even say on their site that some of their members are in fact Wiccans. Now I have to ask you, “does a group that hates Wiccans so much allow them into their fold?” The obvious answer is NO. So I had to conclude these authors just took one part of their website out of context and made up ideas from there. BAD journalism. I’ve also seen people try to say that they did nothing but copy Anton LaVey and replace Satan with the word Werewolf. However upon reading the site fully, I see that they are involved in some heavy Pagan, and even Wiccan type practices, so I decided these accusation couldn’t be true either.

I also heard some rather immature accusations leveled against the High Priest Christopher Belmont Johnson, such as: hes a dork, or his hair is too long etc… This type of adolescent behavior could only come from well… adolescence, or those that are merely jealous of his achievements and wish they could say the same of themselves. I even listened to an interview of this man by Sean Moncrieff of newstalk Ireland. What I found was that Sean was doing nothing but acting like a complete, pardon my french, asshole, while the High Priest presented sound and intellectual ideas that I feel most honest people can relate to. All and all Sean kept stuttering and grasping for words and angles while the High Priest simply maneuvered his way around his childish tactics. Sean also appeared to be pandering to sensationalism, which I feel is what all of these negative articles have been doing. For those of you in the occult community I say “you should know better.” Another thing I have noticed is certain ceremonial magicians do not seem to take The Werewolf Cathedral seriously just because of the use of the word Werewolf, or because the High Priest is involved in the church of satan. I find this to be utterly ridiculous. As Occultist we should fully research before we pass judgment. Not only is the High Priest and founder involved in the church of satan, but he is involved with a very respected western mystery school known as the builders of the adytum. And yet these magicians sit and pass judgment on this man as if they are superior when in fact he is involved in the same things they are… Pathetic. But back to The Werewolf Cathedral itself. It was quite clear to me after reading their site and material that they are using the Werewolf as a symbolic representation of what they believe. Is that any worse then the “God-Head” of Thelema, or the “Witch” of Wicca? It appears to me that The Werewolf Cathedral has done something very creative and new in and for the occult community, and for that they should be commended not assaulted left and right by those that are merely jealous and have done nothing to better the community or themselves. I also find that as a Pagan I agree with a lot of the information and ideas on their site. It seems to be a very realistic philosophy and religion, based on nature as it really is. To put it bluntly they have taken the fluff out of Paganism. And don’t we all owe them just a little for that. Like it or not The Werewolf Cathedral is the type of group that creates real change and progress for the occult community. Why? Because they are original. Yes, that’s right, they are doing something that no one else in the world is doing. So for all those people who have written these negative articles about The Werewolf Cathedral, I say take a good hard look at yourself first. I believe The Werewolf Cathedral is going to be a guiding force in the occult community for many years to come. So whether you like it or not you should show them respect for what they have done, otherwise you just show your own character flaw, JEALOUSY!

*In case you wondered, no I am not a member of The Werewolf Cathedral, nor do I represent them in any way*