Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO) is an initiatory fraternal organization originally founded as a pendant to Freemasonry. While we broke away from Freemasonry in 1917, our organizational and degree structures are still patterned along Masonic lines.
As an organization, OTO accepts the Law of Thelema: Do what thou Wilt. This law was received by Aleister Crowley in 1904 when he received the Book of the Law through dictation from a spiritual being that called itself Aiwass. Though it took Crowley himself some time to accept Thelema, he eventually came to consider it his life’s work to promulgate that Law. OTO is the first organization to formally accept Thelema.
The Law of Thelema is not a license for acting on any whim or desire of the moment. It is instead the strictest bond on the individual to find their True Will and enact that Will. While it is incumbent on the individual to accomplish this task, our purpose is to assist our fellows on their way. We do so by providing initiation into our Mysteries, by modelling Thelemic culture and society to the larger world, and by providing a social space for fellow Thelemites.
Our ecclesiastical arm is the Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica, the EGC. Under the auspices of the EGC, OTO initiates throughout the world perform the Gnostic Mass, our central private and public ritual.