“I am the author of The Source and one of Father Yod’s 14 wives,” announced Isis Aquarian in an email to me last year. She was inquiring about a “Blurt” concerning High Mountain Tempel, whose songs have included recordings of Father Yod, sex-and-veggie cult leader of the Source family, which based their lifestyle around vegetarianism and what Tempel musician Ras Al H’nou describes as “marathon sex magick sessions.”
“I am interested in finding out more about what the band did with this energy and how they used Father Yod in it,” emailed Isis. “It always amazes me to find out what inspires people from knowing about us.”
One year later, High Mountain Tempel are releasing a musical collaboration with Isis Aquarian, on a split LP with U.K. band Earthling Society called Pilgrimage to Thunderbolt Pagoda.
“While I’ve never met Isis face to face, we have talked on the phone for hours,” says Ras Al H’nou of High Mountain Tempel, who recorded Isis’s voice for the album via cell phone. “I have found her to be a person of singular focus and intensity. She isn’t shy about describing her legacy from the Source family years, and her reputation for being a ‘dragon-lady’.… In a sense, she had to be this way. She was the secretary and archivist for a wild and fearless spiritual leader, [but] she’s also sweet, knowledgeable, and kind.”
Though the Source family disbanded after Father Yod’s death in a 1975 hang-gliding accident, members have reunited for concert performances and various written histories of the group. “A documentary is being done on us,” says Isis Aquarian, “along with some pretty interesting leads for maybe a TV series.”