One good thing about heated debates in the Golden Dawn community is that it sometimes draws out the Hermetic Masters from their hideouts in an attempt to set the record straight. Not that I believe that any words of wisdom from a Master will change the hearts of the majority. I’m not that naïve. But I do hope that at least some earnest students of the Royal Art will benefit from the following words – if their minds and hearts be sufficiently open and void of preconceptions.
During the last decade the Chiefs of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega has made several revelations as to the nature of the Great Work, as transmitted to them from the Third Order. The purpose has been twofold in this revelation. One has been to provide sincere students of the Hermetics some guidelines against the trappings of the maze or labyrinth which is the Alchemical Tradition. The other purpose has been to provide proof that the Third Order actually does exist and that the Hermetic Alchemical Tradition it teaches likewise is authentic. G.H. Fra. L.e.S. made a summary of these revelations just recently. I will quote it in full albeit in a slightly amended format:
- The true nature of the Opus Magnum is ENERGETIC EVOLUTION. This is the actual purpose of life on Earth. Human beings are but larval forms of a higher, purely energetic form of life that human beings are evolving towards.
- The Prima Materia of Internal Alchemy is actually the living matter of the HUMAN BODY.
- The alchemical transmutation of Lead into Gold is actually an analogy for the transmutation of the Physical Body (Saturn = Lead) into a SOLAR BODY of LIGHT (Sun = Gold).
- The ROYAL ART of Alchemy is the science of IMMORTALITY – the science of the cultivation of SOUL: a Solar Body of Light that can survive the death of the physical body – and even render us CONSCIOUSLY IMMORTAL.
- The TRUE PURPOSE of all Hermetic arts, whether GOLDEN DAWN MAGICK, laboratory alchemy, or Hermetic Internal Alchemy is the ACCELERATION of this Energetic Evolution that otherwise would require many incarnations to complete.
- The THIRD ORDER of the Alpha et Omega teaches HERMETIC INTERNAL ALCHEMY - the highest form of Hermetic Science – in the sense that it is the most powerful operative practice to ACCELERATE Energetic Evolution.
- Hermetic Internal Alchemy is so powerful that – by using it – you can cultivate a Solar Body of Light in a single lifetime.
- Hermetic Internal Alchemy uses a SECRET FIRE to “cook” and transmute the physical body into pure energy.
- The true nature of this Secret Fire is the FIRES of the PHYSICAL BODY itself.
- The most powerful and creative of these fires of the physical body are LOVE and SEXUALITY.
- Hermetic Internal Alchemy thus cooks the Physical Body (Saturn = Lead) into a Solar Body of Light (Sun = Gold) by harnessing the fires of Love and Sexuality – and using them to accelerate Energetic Evolution.
- The processes of Hermetic Internal Alchemy hold the secret keys to the true and correct preparation of the PHILOSOPHER’S STONE.
- The Philosopher’s Stone is an incredibly powerful ELIXIR of LIFE that can be used, on the one hand, to increase longevity, and on the other hand, to dramatically accelerate the cultivation of a Solar Body of Light.
- The opening phase of this Opus Magnum of Hermetic Internal Alchemy involves cultivation and separation of the ASTRAL BODY.
- For the first alchemical SEPERATIO (in order to separate the Astral Body from the physical body) it is necessary to first liberate the Astral Body from the turbulence caused by its constant bombardment with physical sensations, thoughts, emotions, etc., coming from the physical body. This is the true reason why real initiatic traditions universally require initiatic SILENCE.
- True ASTRAL PROJECTION is only possible AFTER an Adept has first fully cultivated his or her ASTRAL BODY and achieved the FIRST ALCHEMICAL SEPARATIO. (This can only be achieved by first liberating the Astral Body from the domination of the Physical Body as described above).
- This has nothing to do with the sort of waking visions involved in “Skying in the Spirit Vision” or that is commonly understood as Astral Projection by the New Age community. Such waking, visionary states can only reach as far as the LOWER ASTRAL, the realm of illusion and self-deception.
- True Astral Projection occurs in a completely DIFFERENT state of consciousness other than any sort of WAKING visionary or trance state. This state is known only to Adepts once they achieve the First Alchemical Separation. Only then, can we pierce through the LOWER ASTRAL with its deceptions and delusions – to achieve the TRUE spiritual vision on the HIGHER ASTRAL plane.
- PROJECTING IN THE SPIRIT VISION is a higher and superior form of visionary experience available to Adepts of the THIRD ORDER of the Golden Dawn. Skrying in the Spirit Vision, as published by Crowley and Regardie, referred by analogy to this higher, THIRD ORDER technique all along.
- This HIGHER visionary experience of the HIGHER ASTRAL PLANE opens only to the eyes of the Adept that has:
In the latest round of discussions, as a response to this declaration, there has been suggested that all of this is either a rehash of old oriental Tantrik and Buddhist teachings, wrapped up in an occidental package, or that it has been extracted almost verbatim from the popular books of Kenneth Grant! It has even been suggested that this obsession with immortality and survival of the second death smells “Left Hand Path”; alchemical formulas of immortality are redundant as our souls all are already immortal anyway. Being obsessed with immortality is nothing but that fear of loosing the ego, according to the dectractors. The bottom line is that the points presented above is nothing new and quite common knowledge, and quite simple to discern after some study of basic occult symbology, and that initiates all over the world already practice the active cultivation of the solar body. Thus there is no need to uphold the mysterious cloak of secrecy and glamour of inaccessibility.
- Fully cultivated her or his Astral Body – and
- Liberated the Astral Body from the domination of the physical – and
- Achieved the alchemical SEPARATION of the ASTRAL body from the physical body and mastered its PROJECTION – and
- Awakened to full consciousness and awareness on the HIGHER ASTRAL.
This of course provoked the good Alchemical Master, which my readers already have been thoroughly acquainted with here on my blog, to produce yet another statement to dispel all erroneous notions or strange suggestions once and for all. Thus what follows is “the words of alchemical Master, R.C., faithfully translated and transmitted by Lux ex Septentrionis, Frater R+AC.”
I certainly do not wish to deprive you of your cherished illusions. The actual creation of the Solar Body of Light, however, has never been published anywhere or at any time. In reality, the creation of the Solar Body of Light is the most carefully guarded secret of all the great initiatic traditions of the world, from the Pythagorean and Hermetic traditions in the West to the Taoist tradition in China, and the Tantric traditions in both India and Tibet. There do exist, however, documents where you might find vague indications, and in rare instances, perhaps even a pseudo instruction in the training of the Solar Body of Light.And regarding the accusations of “Left Hand Path” practices and “obsession with immortality”, and the futility of it all, Master R.C. has the following to say:
But know this. All of the great traditions teach that the true creation of the Solar Body of Light CAN NOT even BE communicated in writing. In fact, the TRUE secret can’t even be communicated as oral tradition, but rather only energetically, from the Master having already achieved this development to the Disciple who receives this most sacred of initiations.
This transmission can only occur from SOUL to SOUL, and certainly not from a written page to a person. Read and study carefully the instructions that Christ gives to his disciples. Like Buddha, all true alchemical Masters have said over and over that you must have a particular YEAST to awaken gold, and that this yeast may be possessed only by one who has formed it by Divine grace or has received it from another son of Hermes. The former is extremely rare as we shall see.
This is because this formation can only be accomplished through a certain union of Souls and spiritual power passed to the Disciple from an alchemical Master who in turn received it from his own Master, etc. This, however, is TRUE initiation, and not that as understood today in this period of spiritual decadence wherein so many do not even understand the spiritual value of silence, puffing themselves up instead by pretending to publish secrets in books, on the internet, etc.
The true mystery can only be obtained from one who has it. The same is true for initiation. To open a book and consider yourself an initiate merely because you read dead words on paper made from dead wood is a dead end that leads only to delusion and spiritual bankruptcy. This is also the true meaning of initiatic lineage. As it is written that: “None may become Priests and Priestesses of the Eternal unless consecrated by the Eternal itself.”
Only the rarest of human beings, having received their mission on Earth from on high, have received that rare gift of a fully formed Solar Body of Light or the ability to cultivate it in a single lifetime on their own - the great Avatars like Christ, Buddha, Krisna, etc. All others must raise their Solar Bodies with the sacred YEAST - that only another who possesses it - a Solar Master - may transmit.
Can you not see and understand that those who seek, awaken precisely when they come into contact with someone who has precisely this YEAST for their spiritual awakening? Think for a moment. Investigate for yourself, but do not allow yourself to be misled by a delusion of simplicity of something that I can assure you is not a simple matter at all. Do not allow yourself, through mere vanity, to be misled by dead words written on dead wood made into paper.
I repeat: This is the most occulted SECRET of humanity, carefully concealed in all of the religions and alchemical traditions of the world.
However, if you truly believe that to cultivate a Solar Body of Light on your own is such a simple matter, requiring only time and discipline (very laudable as they are) as you each claim, I invite you to prove this to us.
I will then, together with countless others, bow before the first among you who accomplishes this “simple” task - recognizing you as our new teacher and Master at the level of another Christ or Buddha.
The Hermetic tradition does not say, nor has the Alpha et Omega ever said that the soul is NOT immortal. According to the Hermetic tradition, the natural state of the soul is, of course, immortality, at least in the sense that the energy of the Soul survives death. But do the memories, etc. of the incarnation?So ends the words of a Master. Personally I believe the issues raised regarding the “Left Hand Path” are quite interesting, but perhaps a bit unexpectedly. I have had a discussion before here on the blog (albeit in Swedish) with a Left Hand Path practitioner of Qlippotic Qabalah, which was quite a learning experience of me. In the wake of that discussion it has dawned upon me that dichotomies such as “Left Hand Path” and “Right Hand Path” are highly misleading. Out of spiritual ignorance I also used to do this separation between them two paths. But nowadays I find it way to limiting for my understanding. In my current opinion most genuine esoteric traditions, such as that of the Golden Dawn, has or should have aspects of both. Thus the Hermetic Tradition is better designated as a “Middle Path”.
Even the Judaic tradition, in its esoteric aspect, teaches even if the Soul is immortal, however, it requires a vast amount of time until the evolution of the individual, following the normal course of nature, is such that the individual is fully conscious and aware within this immortality.
The Hermetic tradition teaches that everything in nature is evolving towards perfection. Alchemy merely shortens the interval required to achieve attain perfection.
The same is true for the energetic evolution of the human Soul. Initiation within the great alchemical traditions of the Earth, including the Hermetic, is a means of abbreviating the necessary time, or of accelerating this process. In their essence, this is that same function that has yoga, Qabalah, or even the mystical aspect of Buddhism or any other religion. Study the classics of excellent authors like Mircae Eliade and you will be able to follow this ariadne’s thread throughout the spiritual history of mankind.
It is useless to address nonsense you raise about the left hand path, dark path, etc., except to say that such are comments one makes only when they to not know what else to say. I do not wish to be rude, but nor shall I remain silent in the face of nonsense like this, with its taste of Christian Integralism with its obscurantism of human reason and of the human Soul as it has been for Millennia.
Read the discourses of Buddha, of Zoroaster, the Sankara of Hermes Trismegistus, (the collection of hermetic authors called by this name), and other good authors – and you will see that it is not I who affirm these things, but that the tradition has always been on this solid ground. The TRUTH will set you free, not the obscurantism of misleading, sarcastic remarks.
The subject of the energetic evolution of the human Soul is quite complex and certainly can not be fully covered with these few lines. This, however, may be sufficient as a small note to clarify my thinking, which is, I repeat, not based on my own ideas, but reflects the inherited wisdom of Millennia.
Also, what is usually seen today as “Left Hand Path” in the occident (typically labeled as the “Qlippotic Qabalah”, “Chaos Magic”, or “Dark Magick”) isn’t necessarily the same as the “Left Hand Path” in the orient. They share the antinomian character though. But here I must again remind the reader of the quite obvious and strong origins of the Sabbatian Qabalah, through Jacob Frank and the Asiatic Brethren, in the modern Golden Dawn style “Hermetic Qabalah”. Thus in the Letters L.V.X. there is also the notion of Evil amongst the good (“which doth forward the good”), as well as an acknowledgement of a good and evil side of Godhead – Lord of the Universe, Lord of the Light and of the Darkness.
Thus is it fair to compare Kenneth Grant, and whatever Qlippotic that is associated with his teachings and practices, with that of the Nath or Rasa Siddhas? The Tantrik tradition is surely very similar or akin to the Hermetic Tradition, and it does follow a path which is regarded by many profane Hindu devotees as both frightening and rebellious, and blasphemous even to some of the faint hearted disposition. Still it is the path of the alchemical initiate of the orient. In the east “Right Hand Path” has more to do with organized and religious practices of the outer world or the profane, while “Left Hand” is associated with the initiated Tantrikas. Thus “Left Hand” might equally be regarded to be “esoteric” and “Right Hand” exoteric, although there do exist paths of the esoteric Yoga which is more rightly designated as Right Hand Path. At least this very general categorization seems to be useful according to my present limited understanding of the Eastern Tradition.
Furthermore, the Hermetic Masters are not addressing the “litte ego” here when they discuss the immortality of the soul. Instead they refer – to use a Qabalistic term – to the Ruach or the self-conscious mind. Following Golden Dawn qabalistic philosophy the goal is to make the Ruach or Self-consciousness a transparent vehicle for the Higher Self or Neschamah. In this the Ruach must be made to be the king of the Soul, seated firmly on the throne as the New Adam with his Iron Rod. Or, to use a slightly different terminology, to become anointed as the Christos. In my opinion, and obviously also according to the Master R.C., Jesus Christ is a prime example amongst others of one who in fact did attain a Solar Consciousness; it is followed by a illumination and full identification with the “Father” or True and Only Self.
In Internal Alchemy you aspire to separate the different “bodies” or “layers” in the human being to reunite them again into a new and glorious whole. At least this is how I perceive it reading the words of the Master. The end result is a full Cosmic Consciousness in which the radiant Solar power of the Spirit is transmitted inhibited through both the Soul and the Body. This is the transfiguration of the Christ.