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Periodical: Betiero's Oriental Mysteries


From Pat Deveney's database:

Betiero's Oriental Mysteries.
A Monthly Magazine devoted exclusively to Philosophy, Spiritualism, Occultism, Oriental Mysteries and the Truth of Being / A Monthly Magazine of Oriental Mysteries.
Other titles: Oriental Mysteries
1903-1904? Monthly
Chicago, IL, and then San Francisco, CA. Editor: Dr. Thomas Jasper Betiero, Nellie Hawks, associate editor, B.M. Angle, business manager (until he decamped with the journal's funds and list of subscribers).
Succeeds: Star of the Magi; The Philomathian (Union City)
1/1, June 1903-1904(?) $1.00 a year (or free with membership in the Order of Oriental Mysteries); 32-40 pp.

This was the organ of the Order of Oriental Mysteries that Betiero had started in Chicago in 1902 and of which he was secretary (presumably with unspecified, more exalted adepts as the ultimate leaders). At first he had used News E. Wood's Star of the Magi as organ of the order and then the Philomathian of Henry J. Barton, but he started this journal when his fortunes had improved enough to do so. When Star of the Magi ceased publishing in December 1903 arrangements were made for this journal to be sent to subscribers whose subscriptions had not yet expired. The centerpiece of the order was Betiero's copyrighted lessons on "Higher Knowledge," which were serialized in the journal, and in his pamphlets and books, all for sale by the Department of Oriental Mysteries and taught in his Department of Oriental Mysteries Home Studies ($5.00 initiation plus 25 cents a month, or 3 paid subscriptions to the journal). As with many similar journals of the time, like New York Magazine of Mysteries, the journal also touted a Success Department of Oriental Mysteries, which encouraged its members in synchronized exercises of the will and projections of benevolence to obtain success. Beginning in 1903 Betiero, "under spirit guidance," also attempted to float an Oriental Mysteries Colony and temple in California "in the center of which will stand the temple wherein invitations will be given to the worthy,neophytes from all lands. We shall also have a sanitarium, where the afflicted of all kinds may be healed, with nature's finer forces in conjunction with divine mercy. . . . All Oriental Mystics can come and receive the Practical work and Initiation of the order with grips, signs, passwords and degrees." Nothing seems to have come of the scheme. Betiero proclaimed himself the emissary of the ancient Magi, delegated to enlighten the west at the "last international convention of occult sciences" in Madrid in 1880. The nature of the Higher Knowledge sold by him is left enticingly vague, at times reflecting classical western, Indian, Egyptian and Jewish ideas, and pure New Thought (the daily "harmony treatment" required the student to lie in bed in the morning, breathing through the nostrils while holding in mind the thought "I am life, health and a part of God." The result of the Higher Knowledge was "illumination"" "one can then receive knowledge direct from the Universal Spirit. Next the astral visions will open to the neophyte new beings and new worlds. . . . He can also exert a control over the elementary spirits of nature and thus cause them not only to do his bidding, but to cease their annoyances to others," etc. Those who achieved these results were "mystics," carefully distinguished by Betiero from mere "psychics" who lacked intellectual understanding of esoteric truth. The journal initially announced that it had 5,000 "paid subscribers" because of the aid of the adepts and Betiero's sterling reputation for honesty, but the journal's circulation must have been tiny. Some indication of the value Betiero placed on his lessons can be gleaned from a notice he began to run in the journal in 1904, addressed to "Occultists and Brother Mystics," which offered a half-interest in in his "established mail-order business" for $2-3,000. At some point in 1904, after a convenient office fire, the journal was moved to San Francisco.

Betiero wrote almost all of the content of the journal, with Hawks' appropriate New Thought poetry and occasional articles by the likes of "Shri Shankaracharya" (who may have been Betiero, as well). In 1904 he began to publish in the journal his novel Nedoure, Priestess of the Magi, that he had earlier printed in Star of the Magi. On Betiero see also the note under the Philomathian. Listed in the exchanges of The Mazdaznan, 1904. LOC.

Issues:Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N1 Jun 1903
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N2 Jul 1903
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N3 Aug 1903
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N4 Sep 1903
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N5 Oct 1903
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N6 Nov 1903
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N8 Jan 1904
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N9 Feb 1904
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N10 Mar 1904
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N11 Apr 1904
Betiero's Oriental Mysteries V1 N12 May 1904

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