Sijil of the Fatimid Order
In searching for the origin or seed of this vision return to 1965 when Walid al Taha — brilliant junky 350-pound jazz saxophonist poet — inducted us into the Moorish Orthodox Church, gave us a copy of al Ghazzali’s “Confessions, & told us about the Assassins. “Passions are equal to Destinies” as Fourier’s calculus teaches — & these krazy-bricks laid the foundation of a temple of desire — of an imaginal Egypt 2-dimensional as a cigarette-packet design from 1913 but also n-dimensional — emerald gate to Jabulsa & Jabulqu the no-where Cities. Pyramids, palms, sphinxes, roses crescent-&-star, minaret – the orientalismo of a child’s reverie. Why shouldn’t “Truth” take the form of our obsessions?
Noble Drew Ali founded the Moorish Science Temple in Newark NJ in 1913 — the Moorish Orthodox Church was founded as an offshoot in the 50’s — became a psychedelic church in the 60’s in NYC & millbrook — now maintains lodges in NYC & various Upstate towns, Chicago, Seattle, N. California, Bombay (India), etc. I’ve written extensively on MST/MOC history & teachings so won’t repeat myself here, as this SIJIL is meant for those with some background (1) — but you may not be familiar with the Adept Chamber — founded by Noble Drew Ali within the MST and revived within the MOC a few years ago. The MST Adept Chamber(3rd Paradise) functioned as an inner circle where the secret teachings (largely Masonic) received by Noble Drew in the Great Pyramid were passed on to initiates. The Adept Chamber of the Holy Moorish Orthodox Temple (7th Paradise) also looks to Egypt for its teachings, not to pharonic times but to the Fatimid dynasty as will be explained. Unfortunately in 1971 I gave up my interest in Moorish Science & in the “Assassins” (Ismailis) to pursue the trail foretold by Ghazzali, that of orthodox sufism. This mistake cost me seven lean years, but it also taught me a great deal, in positive terms as well as negative. Like the Ismaili poets who used the language of sufism as a “mask” for more esoteric teaching (& like the “Lawless” antinomian sufis, & the “pure esoteric” schools of Javanese kebatinan), the syncresis proposed here will owe a great deal to the beauty of the expression of sufism as it side-steps or evades the traps of “orthodoxy”, “Tradition” & “Law” which line the paths of the formal sufi Orders. (2) The insurrectionary project of “overcoming” organized religion & its miserable Con requires more than philosophical theory or the praxis of revolt — it also demands a spiritual hermeneutic, which will not only provide a structure for critique (of orthodoxy) but also an opening to that revaluation of values which (on the individual or subjective plane) is called realization or awakening. While this double project might better be carried out in the “language” of shamanism or Taoism than of the monotheist “abrahamic” tradition, many of us have strong psychic links to that tradition, & are driven to explore the possibilities for “spiritual freedom” within its language and history. Many such possibilities exist in Judaism(Sabbatai Sevi & Jacob Frank the “false messiahs” for example) as well as Islam. No doubt a different synthesis awaits each individual seeker (“Make your own system or be enslaved by someone else’s” — Blake)- and the present essay (or “experiment”) represents only one of an infinite number of viable “heresies”. This material however has imposed itself on me as a system, one with openings & holes & its own voice demanding to be taught as a system. It has coalesced over many years in a series of visions, & it intends to be crystallized as a teaching & a “conventicle”, based on Fatimid “hiero-history” & Moorish Science. Its aesthetic derives in part from sufism (& shamanism & Taoism & other paths as well, for that matter) but in the initiation it proposes, it roots itself in Ismaili ‘erfan (knowledge) & the structure of the Adept Chamber of the HMOT. It calls itself the FATIMID ORDER.