Monday, August 12, 2013

Arnold Krumm-Heller (1876-1949) and Francisco I. Madero (1873-1913): Some Notes on Sources

Ready for Hollywood?
***UPDATE Sept 25, 2013: Krumm-Heller's public domain works can be downloaded as PDFs from this website.***


***UPDATE Dec 2013 My book, Metaphysical Odyssey Into the Mexican Revolution, is now available***



A very mysterious and Hollywood-worthy character has emerged of late from the mists of my research on Francisco I. Madero (leader of the 1910 Mexican Revolution and President of Mexico 1911-1913) and his secret book of 1911, Spiritist Manual: 

The German occultist, spy, artillery expert, homeopathist and medical doctor (ayyy, let's pile on some more adjectives: expert on indigenous shamanism with the nom de magique Huiracocha, thaumaturge, Rosicrucian, student of Franz Hartmann and Papus, friend of Aleister Crowley and Rudolph Steiner, devotee of Madame Blavatsky, fighter for Venustiano Carranza and Gnostic bishop): 


Arnold Krumm-Heller.

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As for Krumm-Heller's relationship with Francisco I. Madero, according to Heribert von Feilitzsch, author of the recent deeply researched paradigm-smasher of a biography, In Plain Sight: Felix Sommerfeld Spymaster in Mexico, 1908-1914, Krumm-Heller was none other than President Madero's personal physician-- starting in 1911. His source for that? The US National Archives. Check it out:

NA RB 242 Captured German Documents, T141, Roll 20, von Eckhardt to vn Bethmann Hollweg, May 17, 1916.


>Read von Feilitzsch's blog post on Krumm-Heller.



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Krumm-Heller's Autobiography, from Conferencias Esotéricas

Dated Mixcoac, Mexico (that would be the neighborhood Mixcoac in Mexico City, I believe), March 27, 1909

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Ricardo Pérez Montfort's essay, "El doctor Arnold Krumm Heller en México, 1910-1935. Entre el esoterismo, el nacionalismo y la osmoterapia" is in his collection, Cotidianidades, imaginarios y contextos, ensayos de historia y cultura en México, 1850 1950.

I have yet to get my hands on a copy (I hope this week). . . . 

From the bit I found on-line it seems that Krumm-Heller had his doctor's office in Mexico City on the Calle del Empedradillo near the Monte de Piedad (which is on the corner of the Zocalo next to the Cathedral); he was part of the Junta Permanente of the Second Spiritist Congress, and through these members he met Francisco Madero; later became Madero's doctor.


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In (the sublime and novelesque) I Speak of the City: Mexico at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, Mauricio Tenorio-Trillo writes about what he terms Mexico's "India odalisque mania" and one its great examples:


Arnold Krumm-Heller, who was in Mexico City in the 1900s, returned to Germany in the 1920s, and wrote vastly on the racial superiority of the Aryan and Aztec races. He blended theosophy, Freemasonry, racial theories, and his own orientalism vis-a-vis pre-Hispanic Mexico. By 1914, for him, Carranza's Mexico would resist the lure of the American (U.S.) mermaids, and would follow Germany's spiritualist call, rediscovering their Aztec (quasi-Aryan) past. 

Tenorio-Trillo's sources for this:
R. William Weisberger, Wallace McLeod, and S. Brent Morris, ed., Freemasonry on Both Side of the Atlantic: Essays Concerning the Craft in the British Isles, Europe, the United States, and Mexico (Boulder: East European Monographs; New York: Columbia University Press, 2002); Arnold Krumm-Heller, Mexiko, Mein Heimatland! (1919); and Roberto Pérez Montfort's essay noted above.

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More detail on Krumm-Heller in Spanish on the website for the Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antigua, a Venezuelan organization based on his teachings. It claims that when Krumm-Heller arrived in Mexico he joined the Masonic Lodge, Gran Logia Valle de México. 

In 1911 Krumm-Heller wrote Los Tatwas y su aplicación en la vida práctica, which he revised and published in 1926 as El Tatwámetro o las vibraciones del éter. (Download the free PDF here.)

Also according to this article, in 1912 his play, La Ley de Karma, was performed in Mexico City at the Teatro Abreu and in 1913 he published Conferencias Esotéricas, la evolución del planeta  y de las razas humanas, curación de las enfermedades y la prolongación de la vida por medio de ejercicios repiratorios (PDF download). 

The English translation of that would be:

Esoteric Lectures: The Evolution of the Planet and Human Races, Healing Illnesses and the Prolongation of Life by Means of Breathing Exercises

Conferencias esotericas has some rich autobiographical information which is summarized on the www.gnosis2022.com website (in Spanish).


Arnold Krumm-Heller
And I note that the Spanish translation of his novel, Rosa Cruz, novela de ocultismo iniciático, was published by Maucci in Barcelona-- the very same to publish an edition (not the original) of Madero's Manual Espírita in 1911. 

This Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antigua website also notes his many later works, among them:


El zodiaco Azteca en comparción con el de los Incas (1910)

Plantas sagradas (1934)
Del Incienso a la Osmoterapia (1934) 
Arnoldo Krumm-Heller
Ediciones Botas México

Osmotherapy! The idea was like aromatherapy, I suppose. (I just googled and found some Chinese doctors prescribe it for kidney ailments.)

>Find a scribd listing of downloadable copies of many more of Krumm-Heller'sbooks here.


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Krumm-Heller aka Huiracocha, also wrote about tuning the chakras with vocalizations. This YouTube video is a lecture about that by his follower Samael Aun Weor, author of 70 books and founder of the modern Gnostic movement. Weor has more to say about vocalizations and Krumm-Heller here. (The video is in Spanish but even if you can't understand it, it's fun to hear the vocalizations.)


(Interestingly: similar idea over at sound therapist Jonathan Goldman's site which sells a handy chakra tuning app.)

(Fuzzy on the concept of chakras? Get your brief overview here.)


UPDATE: Blog post on this book here.

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Dr Krumm-Heller
President Madero's Doctor
Another batch of information is in the detailed on-line biography by Peter R. Koenig, which asserts that


In 1915, President Madero procured a professorship in German language and literature for him, also making him a lieutenant-colonel and physician to the General Staff.

But of course by 1915 Madero had been dead and buried for two years. Could be a typo? Did he mean Carranza? Not sure what the sources are.


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The most detail about Krumm-Heller is in the biography by one of his disciples, H.S. Tsadhe, Krumm Heller el Rosa Cruz (link downloads the complete PDF)

Biography by H.S. Tsadhe
(en español)

Of Krumm-Haller's time in Mexico, Tsadhe writes (my translation):



"In February 1911, when Madero launched the revolutionary struggle by combat, his friend Arnold Krumm Heller accompanied him, as well as many friends from his lodge and who shared his ideas. Krumm Heller had studied homeopathy in Germany with the direct disciples of Hahneman, and Occult Medicine with Papus in France (he also knew the natural medicine of the indigenous Mapuches, Incas, Mayas and Aztecs) and he was an experienced medium and genuine healer of a thousand remedies. He worked on these daily in his Mexico City laboratory and office. Now our man participates alongside Madero in his revolutionary act as he assumes the office of Inspector General of Medical Services in the Campaign."
En Febrero de 1911, Madero emprende la lucha revolucionaria en el frente de combate; su amigo, Arnoldo Krumm Heller le acompaña, entre otros muchos compañeros de logia y de ideales. Krumm Heller que había estudiado Homeopatía en Alemania, con los discípulos directos de Hahneman, y la Medicina Oculta, con Papus en Francia; (la medicina natural de los, aborígenes mapuches, incas, mayas y aztecas, le era también conocida) era un experimentado taumaturgo y genuino sanador de mil recursos. A diario lo reiteraba en su laboratorio y consultorio de Ciudad de México. Ahora nuestro hombre participa al lado de Madero en su gesta revolucionaria y asume las funciones de Inspector General de los Servicios Médicos en Campaña.

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Those up on their Mexican revolution reading will want to ask, is Arnold Krumm-Heller mentioned in Friedrich Katz's The Secret War in Mexico: Europe, the United States, and the Mexican Revolution

Why, yes, indeed, pp. 428-429, but abruptly, starting when Krumm-Heller described only as a "doctor," who "rallied to Carranza in 1913 and had sent messages to the German authorities  then supporting Huerta in which he urged them to back Carranza. The reply was hardly flattering: the German authorities called him a criminal and a madman..." 


Katz cites the source for that as AA Bonn, Mexico 16, vol. 3, Eckhardt to Reichskanzler, 7 August 1918. 


The problem in evaluating this is, as Katz himself says, though in reference to a different matter, the German secret services were in continual conflict among themselves. 


Was Krumm-Heller a madman? Well, it's important to remember that many people (then and now) considered anyone who showed even the slightest interest in Spiritism, Theosophy, in short anything in anyway occult, loonier than a loon, and certainly Krumm-Heller was very interested all such matters, so it is not surprising that someone somewhere made such a statement about him.


Krumm-Heller was an ardent German patriot and he was back in Germany during the Third Reich, but he was accused of being a "Judaeo-Masonic" conspirator and the Nazis confiscated his library. (See quote from Sabazius below. . . )

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Francisco I. Madero
President of Mexico
As for my own research to date re: Francisco I. Madero, I have not found any other references to Krumm-Heller in the main literature on Madero and the Revolution 1910-1911, nor in Madero's collected correspondence (Epistolerio 1900-1909 vol I and 1910 vol. II). 


Didn't find any in Rogelio Fernández Guell's La Revolución Mexicana, either. And I thought I would since Fernández Guell was the editor of Helios, a Spiritist magazine supported by Madero. Maybe I missed it. (Did I?)


Nope, not in David Romero Romo's Ringside Seat to a Revolution, either (though he says quite a lot about Teresa de Urrea and the Spiritist Lauro Aguirre).

Neither is there a mention of Krumm-Heller in Yolia Tortolero's (magnificent) El espíritismo seduce a Francisco I. Madero.


However, the world of esoteric studies in Mexico was a small one and Madero did attend and in fact sponsor several magazines and conferences both before and after 1910, when Krumm-Heller, fresh from his esoteric studies in Latin America and Paris-- with none other than Papus the great occultist--- arrived in Mexico City. It would be strange indeed if their paths had not crossed. 


Furthermore, both Madero and Krumm-Heller were Masons of the 33rd Degree and both were enthusiastic homeopathists

No doubt there are avenues aplenty for research here.... More info? Comments?


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Eliphas Levi
French occultist
In the remains of Madero's library at Mexico City's Centro de Estudios de Historia de Mexico CARSO, I found some books, including one of Krumm Heller's; Ciencia oculta de la medicina by Franz Hartmann, a translation from the English, Occult Science in Medicine (a German Theosophist and translator of the Bhagavad-Gita, Hartmann had been at Adyar, India with Madame Blavatsky); L’occultisme en le Spiritualisme, by Gérard Encausse, offering chapters on the astral body, the esoteric history of the white race, and the secret histories of the lost continents Atlantis and Lemuria (Encausse was a medical doctor and hypnotist otherwise known as “Papus,” the most famous Theosophist-turned-Occultist of his time, friend to the Spiritists and mystic to the Tzar of Russia (very down on Rasputin)—just to offer a grossly abbreviated description of this most energetic and charismatic Parisian personality); and Les mystères de l’être, by Ely Star-- any or all of which could have been on Krumm-Heller's own shelves and, who knows, may even have been gifts to Madero from Krumm-Heller himself. But I underline: that's just my own speculation. 


Ordo Templi Orientis
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The Invisible Basilica: Arnold Krumm-Heller
by Sabazius
An online biographical sketch 

According to Sabazius:
"[Krumm-Heller] received a document from Papus dated March 13, 1908 appointing him "Délégué Genéral pour le Chili, Perou et Bolivie" of the Martinist Order. He also received, for no fee, a document from Theodor Reuss dated March 15, 1908 appointing him "General Gross-Representanten für Mexico" of the Sovereign Sanctuary of the Ancient and Primitive Rite of Memphis and Mizraim." 

Theodor Reuss was the head of the OTO. More about him in the on-line article by T. Apiryon.

So Krumm-Heller was involved with the OTO = Ordo Templi Orientis
Here's what I could find about that:
Some basic background from the USA OTO website:

The letters O.T.O. stand for Ordo Templi Orientis, the Order of Oriental Templars, or Order of the Temple of the East. O.T.O. is dedicated to the high purpose of securing the Liberty of the Individual and his or her advancement in Light, Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge, and Power through Beauty, Courage, and Wit, on the Foundation of Universal Brotherhood.
Ordo Templi Orientis is the first of the great Old Æon orders to accept The Book of the Law, received byAleister Crowley in 1904 EV. This book proclaims a New Æon in human thought, culture and religion. The Æon arises from a single supreme injunction: the Law of Thelema, which is Do what thou wilt.
U.S. Grand Lodge is the governing body of O.T.O. in the United States. It is the most populous and active branch of O.T.O., with many local bodies spread throughout the country.
Love is the law, love under will.

What did/ does the OTO have to with other Rosicrucian groups? Here's a compare and contrast on all the main modern Rosicrucian groups.



The Sabazius bio also covers Krumm-Heller during WWII (source was Krumm-Heller's son Parsival):



In 1936-37, a pamphlet titled "Der Judenkenner" was circulated, in which Krumm-Heller and the late Theodor Reuss were denounced as agents of the "Judaeo-Masonic Conspiracy". Parsival recalls the circulation of ths pamphlet to their neighbors as a particularly frightening experience, but Krumm-Heller seemed relatively unconcerned for his safety until the last days of the war. The Nazis confiscated Krumm-Heller's library, but did not destroy it. Krumm-Heller and his son left Germany for America in 1937. The father returned to Germany in 1938, leaving Parsival in Mexico to attend school. Parsival returned to Germany in 1940. Carlotta, Krumm-Heller's second wife and Parsival's mother, died in 1945.
Krumm-Heller remained in Germany throughout most of WWII, at his home in Marburg. Marburg was a relatively tolerant university town and Krumm-Heller lived there in precarious safety even though he passively resisted the Nazis by such acts as flying the Mexican flag above the required Nazi flag in front of his house. During the war, Krumm-Heller maintained a baseline level of contact with his F.R.A. bodies in South America via mutual contacts in Sweden. When the Americans marched into Marburg, Krumm-Heller greeted them enthusiastically, and was appointed by them as the local director of the Red Cross, with which organization he had long been associated. As soon as the war was over, he immediately re-established full contact with F.R.A. in South America. Krumm-Heller died in Marburg in 1949 surrounded by his family and friends. He was cremated in his Red Cross uniform.




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It occurs to me that anyone who wants to do more research might find an angle in the papers of Aleister Crowley at the Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin. I did check the list of correspondents listed on-line and Krumm-Heller is not among them. But there might be something more. I would think. 

P.S. Portuguese website which argues that Krumm-Heller, of the white lodge, was against Crowley, of the black lodge. 


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La Sagrada Biblioteca IGEOM (en español) has a page on Krumm-Heller

Excerpt (my translation):


Arnold Krumm-Heller is an occultist who apprenticed in the old esoteric societies of the 19th century. He is a master of the white brotherhood, whose spirit is Archbishop in the Gnostic Church of the Inner Worlds, and we have this autobiographical note of his, we can get a precise idea of how he was and how he thought, which is always revealing. . . . read more
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Comments?