Creators of Thelema

Leila Waddell

A fascinating and diverse group of people participated in the creation of Thelema as a modern philosophy and faith. Many contributors left Aleister Crowley’s Thelemic community under strained circumstances and pursued their own visions. There are literally thousands of individuals who were key to the esoteric ideas that gained final shape in the early 20th … Read more

Jane Wolfe

Leila Waddell

Jane Wolfe was born in Pennsylvania, a rural community to the northeast of Pittsburgh in the Alleghenies. Eight months the senior of Crowley, she was educated at Eastman Business College in Poughkeepsie starting in 1896 where she intended to become a stenographer, a progressive course for a woman at the time.  Wolfe went to New … Read more

Charles Stansfeld Jones

Leila Waddell

Charles Stansfeld Jones was an enormously important figure in early Thelema.  Born in 1886, making him eleven years younger than Aleister Crowley, he joined the A∴A∴, taking the name Achad, in 1909 after reading The Equinox.  Much of the mythos and conceptualization of the process of ascension and “Crossing the Abyss” comes from Jones’ annotated … Read more

François Rabelais

Leila Waddell

François Rabelais was an early humanist writer, living from about 1487 through 1553, during the French Renaissance.  He wrote in a style of comic allegory which was common at the time, allowing for criticism of the social order in the guise of “jests” which might be unacceptable in polemic writing.  His works, Gargantua and Pantagruel … Read more

Leila Waddell

Leila Waddell

Leila Waddell was born in Bathurst, New South Wales.  She taught violin from 1901-1907, and gained good reviews as a soloist. Attracted to the bohemian world of performance, in 1906 she joined a group called The Bresicans organized by musical director and promoter Henry Hayward. The group was composed primarily of members of Hayward’s own … Read more