Fama Fraternitatis - 1614

Wiewohl wir nun wohl wissen, daß es umb ein ziemliches noch nicht an dem, da wieder unserm Verlangen oder auch anderer Hoffnung mit allgemeiner Reformation divini et humani, solle genug geschehen, ist es doch nicht unbillich, daß, ehe die Sonne auffgehet, sie zuvor ein HELL oder dunkel liecht in den Himmel bringt und unter dessen etliche wenige, die sich werden angeben, zusammen tretten, unsere Fraternitet mit der Zahl und Ansehen des gewünschten und von Fr.R.C. fürgeschriebenen Philosophischen Canons, einen glücklichen Anfang machen oder ja in unserer Schätz (die uns nimmermehr aufgehen können) mit uns in Demut und Liebe genießen die Mühsamkeit dieser Welt überzuckern und in den Wunderwerken Gottes nicht also blind umbgehen.

Vi vet dock att det enligt vår åstundan och andras förväntningar efter någon tid kommer en allmän reformation av både gudomliga och mänskliga ting. Ty innan solen går upp, upplyses himlen av
MORGONRODNADENS ljus. I väntan på denna reformation församlas några få som med sitt antal skall utöka vårt brödraskap, höja dess anseende och stärka dess förhoppningar och ge de av Fr.R.C. föreskrivna Filosofiska Canons en lycklig begynnelse. I all ödmjukhet och kärlek skall dessa nytillkomna tillsammans med oss dela våra skatter, som aldrig skall förgås, och så lindra denna världens möda och inte längre vandra ovetande om kunskapen om Guds underbara verk.

Howbeit we know after a time there will now be a general reformation, both of divine and humane things, according to our desire, and the expectation of others: for it is fitting, that before the rising of the Sun, there should appear and break forth AURORA, or some clearness, or divine light in the sky; and so in the mean time some few, which shall give their names, may joyn together, thereby to increase the number and respect of our Fraternity, and make a happy and wished for beginning of our Philosophical Canons, prescribed to us by our brother R.C. and be partakers with us of our treasures (which never can fail or be wasted) in all humility, and love to be eased of this worlds labor, and not walk so blindly in the knowledge of the wonderful works of God.


Det brittiska ordenssällskapet Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn och den tyska Frimurarlogen L'Aurore Naissante, vilket grundades i London 1888 respektive Frankfurt-am-Main 1807, delade på samma hebreiska namn Chevrah Zerach Bequr Aur, förevisat i gyllene gult vid bloggens huvud, vilket ordagrannt kan översättas till “Stigande Gryningsljusets Sällskap”. Denna tyska Rosenkorsiska Frimurarloge i Frankfurt, vilket måste anses vara det ursprungliga modertemplet till GOLDEN DAWN, kallade sig på tyska även Loge sur Aufgehenden Morgenröthe, vilket kan översättas till “Gryende Morgonrodnadens Loge”. Detta skiljer sig åt från den engelska seden att översätta orden Bequr Aur till “Golden Dawn” eller “Gyllene Gryningen”. Med anledning av Rosenkorstraditionens tyska ursprung är en mer korrekt översättning av Bequr Aur, genom franskans L'Aurore Naissante och tyskans Aufgehenden Morgenröthe, inget annat än GRYENDE MORGONRODNADEN. Denna hänvisning till ett stigande gryningsljus, morgonrodnad eller aurora är en klar hänvisning till den allmäna reformationen omnämnt i det ovan citerade stycket från Fama Fraternitatis. Denna blogg har dock valt att behålla den försvenskade anglo-saxiska termen GYLLENE GRYNINGEN för att denna, invand som den är, lättare associeras med den Rosenkorsiska tradition som här ämnas att framställas.

Licht, Leben, Liebe

tisdag 28 april 2009

Don't feed the blog trolls


Some of you will know that the Order which I represent in Scandinavia, The Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega (HOGD/A+O), announced a peace initiative at the Vernal Equinox of 2009 - which has become known as the "olive branch" of David Griffin - and invited all parties to follow suit. The Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. has come to realize that this kind of brutal competition, which all of the major Golden Dawn Orders has been involved in since the middle 1990's, destroys nothing but the overall reputation of the Golden Dawn, not only as a physical body but also as an idea.

I know for a fact, from personal experience, that serious students are frightened away from a golden opportunity of spiritual growth because of this constant mud slinging between factions.

I know for a fact that this peace offer is sincere. It's not just empty words; the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. has presented detailed plan of action of how to go about to manifest a multilateral disarmament. But not a single body of the big name Orders has even cared to comment upon it. Instead this olive branch has been met with nothing but contempt from the other factions.

On the other hand, the majority of the small and independent Temples and observers, who have no interest in proselytizing members, has either been silent or has been reserved and sceptic regarding this "olive branch", which is fully understandable considering how long this "War of Roses" has been continuing and to what extremes it has gone. But what we have witnessed on Robert Zink's Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn yahoo-forum is a barrage of the usual nonsensical rumours and accusations which we have become used to during the past 10 years or so, and more so.

Following this peace offer the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. also published a series of videos on YouTube, showing parts of the Vernal Equinox ritual of the Ahatôôr Temple No. 7 in Paris, which opened the 100 Year Centennial Jubileum Celebration of the founding of the Rosicruian Order of Alpha et Omega in 1909 by S.L. MacGregor Mathers.

We actually hoped that everyone would enjoy in sharing this with us. But what happened instead? Another meaningless defamation campaign against the A.O. emerged, involving the usual "nazi" rumour which the competing fractions normally use when they have ran out of reasoned argumenting.

As I personally attended and took active part in these festivities, I took it quite personal and was hurt deeply in my heart. I thought that the spirit of the Golden Dawn deserved better than this, so as naive as I am I embarked in a futile attempt to create a creative discussion about Golden Dawn ritual and symbolism, which amongst other things incited me to write a couple of short essays about the Red Enamelled Golden Cross and the Five Petaled Rose. But nobody cared about having a serious debate, so I resignated.

But the most ugly part in all this is the latest initiative taken in this defamation campaign, the blogosphere. We have before come to be used to anonymous defamation cites, but now this saddest part of the "War of the Roses" has spilled over to the blogosphere, which I refer to as the "Blog Trolls". So, naive as I am and against better judgement, I thought that I could perhaps reason with one of these guys (why do we always presume that these persons are male?) and embarked on, what I initially though was, a serious debate. I tried to reason with the guy telling him that what he did on his blog was counterproductive towards the entire Golden Dawn community, but to no avail.

I have learnt a hard lesson: Don't deal with anonymous blog trolls, don't feed them with more fuel. I did and I deeply regret that I even gave him serious attention. So now I admonish you all, who are serious in creating peace in the Golden Dawn community:

Don’t feed the blog trolls! Don't pay them any attention!

I will show you why, as what follows is a complete transcription of the conversation. This is published here as a warning not to fall into the same trap as I did. There is no sense in reasoning with these disciples of negativity. Give them the only reaction that they deserve - ignore them completely.

The anonymous blog troll in question calls himself "Golden Dawn Insider" and goes under the name of "Tommy", claiming that he has had experience of the Golden Dawn community since the middle 1990's and had communication with most Temples involved in this conflict. He tries to pose as an serious and objective observer, not representing anyone else but himself. But reading what he writes on this blog makes it quite clear to me that he has a hidden agenda which is not just his personal, but involves one of the big name Orders, and that he does not at all use intelligent reasoning but simple propaganda tactics and recurring themes or talking points, which amounts to that the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O.:
  1. Is a front to a nazi organization.
  2. Lacks any lineage.
  3. Breaks the hallmarks of the Golden Dawn tradition.
Everything else he is saying is just a glamorous package to deliver this same and old recurring message, which he's trying to hammer into the consciousness of the unsuspecting and serious seeker. And to all of you serious spiritual seekers who are reading this:

What follows has nothing at all to do with spirituality.

It has nothing at all to do with the high ideals of the Golden Dawn.

This is not about L.V.X.

It's all about V.I.T.R.I.O.L.
(and I am not referring to alchemy here)

Read and judge for yourself (A note: I have felt compelled to edit certain parts of the following transcription out of legal considerations).

The point of contention of Golden Dawn Insider is:

That David Griffin and associates demonstrate very clearly how out of touch with the tradition of the Golden Dawn they really are, as it is clear he is ignorant of traditional Golden Dawn symbolism. This, Tommy claims, is proven in the aforementioned videos where the ritual is shown.

That the fact that David Griffin was wearing an "Iron Cross" is proof of his ties to Nazism, and that the historical Iron Crosses of the WWII were not only black, but also Gold, Blue, or Red. This is also proven because he has his Hegemon dress as a member of the Ku Klux Klan. [Sic!]

To this I responded:
You wrote: "In fact, I've found, with minimal effort, Iron Crosses that were Gold, Blue, or Red."

Could you please give any sources? And btw, how able are you to judge Mr. Griffin's knowledge of Golden Dawn symbolism, having not ever met him? Just curious.

To witch Golden Dawn Insider answered:
Look, I'm not going to sit here and tell you I believe David Griffin to be a Nazi. I'm only posting here current events and putting pieces of the puzzle together. You can make up your own mind.

I'll concede that it's possible the cross he's wearing isn't an "Iron Cross." However, there is other visual evidence I've encountered that hints at the fact that either David Griffin is tied with Nazi-ism in some way or just has a fancy for such symbolism.

How can I judge Mr. Griffin's knowledge of GD symbolism? By their fruits shall ye know them. He has absolutely no regard for the traditional structure of the order, and only justifies it by stating that the Golden Dawn system was never meant to remain exactly the same over the years. I would agree to a degree with this perspective. His lack of understanding for the traditional structure of the order is not entirely his fault, as he was kicked out of the inner order within two weeks after [...] initiated him into 5=6.
Look how he tries to maintain a image of being "reasonable" and "intelligent", i.e. every intelligent person cannot believe in any of these rumours of Mr. Griffin having ties with nazism, at the same time ending the sentence insinuating that it "looks" like he could be a nazi. Very simple law of propaganda tactics which reads: Tell people something repeatedly, it becomes the truth. Look also that he partly agrees with the rationale behind the General Reformation of 1999, at the same time disqualifying it by reducing Mr. Griffin' lineage to an old American initiation by one of Israel Regardie's students, which has no bearing to the reformation at all. My response to this was:
Care "Tommy",

You wrote: "He [i.e. Griffin] has absolutely no regard for the traditional structure of the order".

In this I agree, that he has no regard of preserving an old and obsolete structure which was created 121 years ago. But to call this not having sufficient understanding of the structure, that's not more than conjecture on your part. Instead of your conclusion Mr. Griffin's and Mr. Ruggiu's decision to reform their order may be a proof that they know something about the structure that you yourself doesn't understand or have overlooked.

Notice that I included Jean-Pascal Ruggiu together with David Griffin as the source of the Reformation of 1999. I know for a fact that the reformation was a combined effort between Sweden and France.

I would be happy to inform you about the reasons behind the 1999 reformation, if you are willing to reason and discuss with me. But considering all the usual nonsense rumours you are spreading here on your blog (including the particulars of Mr. Griffins 5=6 initiation), I fear that you are not interested in a serious discussion. But I am willing to give you the benefit of the doubt.

To this Golden Dawn Insider responded:
It is obsolete, according to Griffin's extensive writing on the subject, in as much as a lot of the inner and outer order grade material was published, primarily by Regardie. The publication of certain lessons and methods, however, does not impose a necessary reform of the entire structure of approach to theory and practice of magic, specifically the Golden Dawn.

I would entertain a discussion with you on "1999 reformation," but I hardly think it would be anything more than a rationalization of a decision made by (in my humble opinion) those unqualified to make such a change.

Regarding Griffin's 5=6 initiation, it is a matter of his word against [...]. What you can't deny is that he is a former member of [...] order and that he founded his own order in the late 90s. Knowing his roots, it becomes clear that the nonsense is his claim to be the "one and only" only order with any lineage to Mathers.
Here Golden Dawn Insider tries to pose as someone that's interested in a serious discussion about Golden Dawn initiation and the training of the modern Golden Dawn initiate. There is some credence to his opinion that just because something is published doesn't necessarily mean it cannot have merit to present it traditionally to the student. Here I take the bait, which is further made more appeasing when he challenges me to present something solid. Again he repeats the old "Griffin has no lineage" mantra, knowing that most that read his messages remember the last sentence thrown out.

What follows is my effort to provide a serious explanation of the Reformation of 1999:
Care Frater Tommy,

Perhaps I'm naive, but I sense in you some kind of willingness for discussion. Your willingness to let my posts through is a token of this, and in this regard I salute you. Please bear in mind that I'm not interested in any infighting with you or anyone else. We should be beyond this, as we both belong to the Greater Fraternity of the Golden Dawn. We should strive to see what we have in common and what binds us together, rather than searching for the enemy. I don't like to fight with my own kind.

Regarding me indulging in rationalization...perhaps, perhaps not. I'm not one of the original reformers, but I'm one of those who has implemented them, namely in my Temple, as have all Temples in Sweden (even them not belonging anymore to the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O.). I have advanced several initiates through the Grades and personally supervised their training and giving them regular counselling, as part of their initiatic process, since the middle 1990's. So I believe I'm quite qualified to have a educated opinion of its effectiveness and of its appropriateness. This doesn't mean that I won't acknowledge your right for a difference of opinion. To be honest, I fully respect your reservedness. I probably would have been one of its critics wouldn't I had experienced it myself.

First of all, the reformation of 1999 doesn't change the initiatic structure at all, but greatly enhances it. Our initiatic rituals are more or less the same as the ones you are accustomed to, even if we have made some amendments of a minor nature. The greatest change lies on the individual level and personal work. As the G.D. in the Outer was mainly a theoretical Order, now it is also operative magical and alchemical.

The initiates of the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. follows a very rigid regimen of gradual magical workings as related to the standard and correspondences as set forth by the original Golden Dawn of the 1888 year reformation, i.e. following the path and ascension of the Tree of Life. So a Practicus of our Order, as an example, invokes all forces relating to Water and the Sephirah Hod - nothing else or less. You will see the same with the other Elemental Grades, as invocation starts off with the Zelator Grade.

Our Neophytes prepare themselves for the initiatory work, with Lesser Banishing Rituals and Middle Pillar Ritual. As initiates of the Elemental Grades they learn to perform the Greater Pentagram and Hexagram Rituals. As portal members they learn the Supreme Pentagram Ritual. As Neophyte Adepti Minori they work with the Planetary Hexagram workings inside the Vault.

In the Elemental Sub-Grades of the Adeptus Minor Grade they work with each Enochian Tablet (Elemental, Planetary and Zodiacal), and in much more detail and depth compared to the Outer Order Workings, plus even more interesting operations that I cannot divulge here. So, as you see, there is a very conscious and deliberate structure in the Magical training of the initiate that, in my experience is superior to the old structure of training. On the level of Adeptus Major, which also breaks into Sub-Grades, we train our initiates in magical evocation, i.e. the much misunderstood but highly imperative workings with the averse forces. These averse forces are of course the repressed "demons" or complexes of the unconscious of the initiate. If successful, this naturally transforms the initiate into a Exempt Adept, free from his own irrational and infantile desires.

This clearly follows the Abramelin formula. The six months preparation as described in the second book corresponds to the Elemental Grades and Portal. The convocation of the good spirits corresponds with the Adeptus Minor Grade, which of course should result in the Knowledge and Conversation with the Holy Guardian Angel, while the conjuration of the Evil Spirits is corresponding with the Adeptus Major Grade.

Regarding Alchemy, we train our Outer Order members in some very basic spagyrical operations in the higher Elemental Grades. As Adepti Minory we work with the Lesser Work or the Circulatum Minor, production of the Plant Stone. In the Adeptus Major Grade we work with the Great Work, or Ciruculatum Major, according to the Dry Way. In the Adeptus Exemptus Grade we work with the Great Work according to the Wet Way.

Inner Alchemy, the true Jewel and capstone of the old Continental Rosicrucian tradition, is the subject of the three Magisteria of the Magister Templi, Magus and Ipsissimus Grades.

In my own personal experience and that of my students, I know the difference between how it was used to be and how it is now after 1999. As I said, the Outer Order process is now greatly enhanced, but at the same time "weeds out" the unprepared. Granted, the initiatic process is much more testing and tries the candidate to a greater extent, but that is for the good in my opinion.

Some leave because they cannot handle the forces, i.e. out of spiritual immaturity. Others leave because of the time consuming required work and study, i.e. out of laziness. The rest are much more tempered and prepared for the Greater Initiation of the Adeptus Minor.

Considering the advanced workings of the reformed R.R. et A.C. this magical and alchemical preparation in the Outer Order is both required and needed. So the reformed curriculum is certainly not for anyone interested in the G.D.; it is not for the armchair occultist. As a matter of fact, it requires perseverance, courage, determination, maturity, seriousity and sincerity. Following the required work, it is extremely difficult to advance just by chance or outer appearance, and intellectual capacity alone.

I wouldn't say that it is more dangerous to be an initiate today. But it is definitely more difficult, and stressful. The initiate is protected by the egregore and current of the Temple and Order. He or she is, as always has been the fact both before and after the 1999 reformation, introduced to the forces of the Grade (which is a blend or amalgamation of Elemental, Planetary, Zodiacal and Sephirotic currents) by the medium of the Hierophant and the Temple, through the initiatic rites. The Grade Rituals serves to be a species of catalyst which awakens the corresponding forces within the Sphere of the initiate. This fact makes him or her able to work with these forces and transform him- or herself through their agent, which is always linked to the currents invoked prior in the Grade Ritual.

Furthermore, the initiate is under strict supervision of his or her tutor or mentor, which is a must with this kind of advanced curriculum. Any signs of unwanted effects are easily spotted; the initiatic process is either adjusted, checked, suspended or discontinued. My experience is that the initiate him- or herself intuitively or by necessity knows when the obstacle is to great, be it the sheer workload or spiritual unpreparedness.

Knowing that the initiatic process of the Golden Dawn in itself is quite intense, if your are dedicated to the path, it is even more so and greatly enhanced now after 1999. The archetypal synchronistic events are even more emphasized. Each initiation (or advancement) is a species of a deliberate crisis for the initiate; it may bring forth spiritual development or regression. Even more so now. But as I said, the mere structure of the work, together with close tutorship, the Grade rites and the protective egregore, makes this a great opportunity for the sincere student.

Now it’s up to you and the readers of your blog to judge for yourselves if all this is mere rationalization concocted up in my own morbid mind, or if my words bear the mark of someone with experience. Please bear in mind that I don’t regard the pre-1999 reformation curriculum to be without merit. It still has an extremely great spiritual potential to bring the initiate to his or her own God. I even wouldn’t dare to call the structure of curriculum that I profess to be superior to the one you and most of my Golden Dawn brothers and sister are used to. Please continue to follow it. I encourage you to. This is not about an “old vs. new aeon” thing. Not an all. It is just the simple fact that we prefer to do it a bit differently as compared to how you do it, and that we regard ourselves to be in a legitimate position to make these changes. Still there is lots of points left which we share in common. We are basically working in the same tradition. Again, let’s look for the similarities instead of the differences between us.

Regarding the initiation of Mr. Griffin, I believe he is best qualified to defend himself. He doesn't need me for this. May I just bring your attention to the fact that Mr. Griffin was a member of Cris Monnastre's Temple in Los Angeles, and no one else’s. It's true that this Temple under Monnastre’s supervision was part of a greater confederation of Temples across the States during the late 1980's and early 1990's. It is also true that they had much cooperation on the level of the Inner Order and used a common Vault of the Adepti. But this doesn't mean that Mr. Griffin was anyone else’s student but that of Cris Monnastre. He was under her direct supervision and authority, and no one else’s, during these years.

But these things of the past or American “lineages” doesn't matter anymore, as the Ros. Cruc. Order of the A.O. have its base and pivot in Paris and the Ahatoor Grand Temple No. 7. So, my suggestion is to drop this particular aspect of our discussion entirely as it leads nowhere, is counter productive, and frankly is boring.

Fraternally in L.V.X., Life and Love,
To this Golden Dawn Insider commented, still with some kind of spirit that seemingly entertains a creative discussion (he even calls me "Frater"):
Assuming I have the time, I certainly have a willingness for discussion.

Far be it from me to tell you and yours what to do. If something is working for you, by all means do continue. I'm not convinced that the outer order initiates are ready for all inner order materials, published or otherwise. Some practices I would go as far as to say they are dangerous for the unprepared.

I have read this defense of Griffin's affiliation, history, and ties with [...]. However, it really just because a student is guided by their primary teacher doesn't mean they don't still fall under the jurisdiction of the reigning chief adept. Consider if the same thing happened within your order. I'm not making any of this up. I have had oral and written communication on the subject from members of a few orders.

I don't deny David or his (your) order's right to practice Golden Dawn magic or to run an order. However, to make such a claim to be the only legitimate Golden Dawn order in existence is absurd. He used to make statements more to the effect that he would essentially head the whole Golden Dawn, and it seems more that since he has been successful only in stirring up ill feeling he changed gears last year when he started claiming to possess the sole lineage. As I've stated before the videos he took of the supposed 100+ year old temple bears little resemblance of the simple construction of a proper Golden Dawn temple. 100 years is more than enough time to construct a proper "grand temple." This discussion is far from counterproductive, but if you don't wish to continue with it, that's fine by me.
But as can bee seen, Tommy is speaking with a forked tongue; "please go ahead and continue with your reformation, but remember that it is dangerous for your students". Here he also introduces the misguided concept of the Chief Adept, which I will soon deal with below. To underpin his statements, he again reaffirms his "insider position" and close ties with certain important parties. Again he ends his message with refuting the lineage of the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O.

To this I answered, still believing some parts of his sentiments being sincere and personally motivated:
Care Frater Tommy,

I appreciate your candidness. Could you be more specific about which Inner Order practices you regard as dangerous for the unprepared initiate?

I understand your sentiments about Mr. Griffin's claims. Looking back it has been counterproductive, and I can understand that many has been upset by it. I am the first to applaud the new direction taken in my Order to acknowledge all Golden Dawn Orders. This new approach has been long overdue.

Let me just make it clear that our Order was not the first to make such bold claims (and I am not referring to any of the Orders you have mentioned in our discussion); you know who I mean. But let's not linger on the past. Let us look ahead.

I understand yours and others reservations about this new direction. But let me assure you that it is sincere. We have come to understand that all this crap - which basically is a classic strife within a family, albeit a dysfunctional one - has just made harm to the entire Golden Dawn community. I know for a fact that it has scared away lots of serious seekers. This is tragic.

Unfortunately, some contents on your blog isn't making things for the better. So I do believe it is counterproductive. Let's stop pointing fingers at each other; we all have a collective responsibility in preserving the reputation of our common venerable tradition.

Regarding the Paris Grand Temple of Ahatoor No. 7. Our Order has never claimed that it has had a continual operative existence since its original founding in 1892; it was revived by Jean-Pascal Ruggiu and Nicholas Tereschenko in 1992. The fact remains that it performs its meetings in a freemasonic lodge room, which it rents from a French Masonic Order. This accounts for some of the non-optimal solutions that you can spot in the video, as regards the props, etc. This is a common situation for most Golden Dawn and other occult Orders in Europe. This was also, as you know, the situation at the original Grand Temple of Isis-Urania No. 3 in London, which usually held meetings at the house of some member and occasionally held its meetings at Mark Masons Hall. This was also the case with the Mother Temple of Stella Matutina, the Amoun Temple, which held its meetings in the living room of some initiate.

This is nothing uncommon at all. Perhaps the situation is different in the States, I don't know, but this is the situation in Europe.

Regarding the situation in the States in the 1980's and early 90's, Cris Monnastre's Temple was authorized (or rather approved) by non other than Israel Regardie; no one else had jurisdiction over her. She was, in fact, the closest pupil of Regardie. Everyone knew this to be a fact during the time of Mr. Griffin's initiations. Temples at that time were in practice independent. The principle was co-operation, not autocracy. I know that people involved in these tragic events today have other views, but this is how Monnastre herself viewed this.

But all this is history now. Please let us look ahead towards the future instead.

Fraternally in L.V.X.,
What was before a tentatively and almost fraternal discussion now suddenly turns foul, with this message from Golden Dawn Insider:
I have witnessed, the uninitiated specifically, experience psychological problems due to working with various forces and entities. The Enochian system is but an example of something that generally lies within the inner order that has the potential to really mess up someone's life. It is not a result that is absolutely destined to happen with every individual, but it does happen. I don't quite how in depth into Enochian magic you go into with your outer order, but I do know you provide the Enochian tablets to your Zelator, or rather what you have renamed to "Junioris."

Why do you hold the view that it is "more difficult for a student today."

How can you claim lineage through a building when your order's website clearly places an emphasis on "apostolic succession?"

I do certainly hope for a peaceful future within the Golden Dawn, but it isn't yet clear to me how that will happen. If you truly believe it to be a possibility, I would encourage your webmaster to set a good example by removing all the trash about other orders hosted there. I think this might send the message that you are all at least trying, as it currently seems that nobody trusts the "olive branch."
Here is becomes clear that Golden Dawn Insider just are reflecting the discussion which has been prevalent on the EOGD yahoo-forum. Again, that the reformation of 1999 is dangerous for our candidates, that our lineage is nothing that a myth of the recreated Ahathôôr Temple in Paris (i.e. "lineage through a building"), and lastly that the responsibility must belong to the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. to unilaterally dismantle the contents on its web page, before anyone else does anything.

For me it now becomes clear that I am talking to a member of one of the big name orders, probably the EOGD, because of the focus on the untraditional Christ like sanctity of the Chief Adept, and because of his use of libellous and simple defamation tactics, a behaviour which I have seen from this camp many times before. Would he been sincere when, and I quote, he stated that he "certainly hope for a peaceful future within the Golden Dawn" he wouldn't had use these kind of unproductive and highly political ways to express his point. It's people like Golden Dawn Insider, which hides behind a veil of anonymity on defamation blogs, which makes ME doubt that something substantial of this peace offer of the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. will ever come through.

Regarding the "Enochian Magic is dangerous" slogan, now this sounds like something coming from a hardliner B.O.T.A. member. I'm curious of how Elemental invocation, as an example, can be harmful just by using the same symbols and names that are already used in the Elemental Grade rituals? As I said in my post earlier, being introduced to these forces in a physical initiation ritual actually seals a covenant with these forces and the candidate. This is a very underestimated and highly important aspect of initiation. Tommy even partially confirms this when he write that he has noticed this specifically amongst the uninitiated. But considering that the EOGD practices "astral" initiation, I wouldn't recommend them following our suit when it comes to the magical training of their Outer Order member. Also considering the hard work that is to be expected with this kind of magical regimen and requires lots of time investment and discipline, which is counterproductive if you have the ambition to become the biggest Order in membership.

Guess what people? Serious students of magic are doing this kind of work anyway, whether any Chief of a Temple approves of it or not. The safest way to deal with this fact is to provide with a deliberate and conscious magical curriculum, which is stimulating for the modern student of the Golden Dawn, who is much more advanced compared to candidates back in 1888.

I did write a final post to Golden Dawn Insider, which hitherto hasn't been published. Therefore I will publish it here for everyone to read. As you will notice it is more harsh in tone, which expresses my deep disappointment about the real motives of Golden Dawn Insider, which is nothing more than defaming the reputation of the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O., not taking to consideration that it actually defames the entire Golden Dawn community.
Care Frater Tommy,

There are always two sides to every debate. Please take my questions to you in the fraternal spirit in which they are intended.

In my opinion, your blog has but one purpose. To anonymously defame the Ros. Cruc. Oder of A.O. in order to frighten potential members away from our order to the EOGD. Otherwise, why do you hide behind anonymity, except so as not to face consequences of the libelous content of the statements that you make?

Moreover, I am deeply concerned that you do not appear willing to have an intelligent discussion with me at all. Instead, you merely keep repeating your talking points over and over like a broken record. This is a common rhetorical strategy used in propaganda, but not in academic discussion.

It is obvious, despite your attempt to protect both yourself and the EOGD from prosecution for libel in response to the rumors that you create and spread anonymously on this blog, that you in fact represent the EOGD. This is clear from the content of your blog posts. Does Robert Zink agree with what you are doing? Does he support this? I would appreciate some honest answers to these questioins rather than your merely repeating your talking points yet again.

I hope that you fully understand that the Golden Dawn community here in the Blogosphere is getting very tired of defamation spread by anonymously published websites and blogs. Numerous of the legitimate Golden Dawn blogs have been discussing this problem of the terrible public impression caused by the defamation being spread by anonymously published blogs like this one and others like it, no matter which order and leaders they are attacking.

Our Imperator recently spoke out against this in the Blogosphere and asked every one to stop this, including those misguided individuals misguided attacking the EOGD. I agree with his words that you should all "zip your lips." I note that the anonymous blogs that had been attacking the EOGD have fallen silent for some time now and that you are the only anonymous writer continuing to spread defamation in the blogosphere.

Why do you spread such defamation? All of this amounts to nothing but fear-mongering as a marketing tool - from your silly Nazi rumors to the ridiculous notion that practicing magic under supervision in our Order is more dangerous than doing it on one's own reading from the published litterature. The Golden Dawn community on the Blogosphere is getting fed up with this sort of thing.

I hate to bring this issue about lineage up into our discussion, which is not one of my favorite subjects. But it was you who brought it up in the first place, and who repeats it in every other paragraph. On the subject of lineage, it is historical fact that the lineal affiliations of the Golden Dawn have always been vested, not in the office of Chief Adept as you and EOGD mistakenly assert, but rather in the Adeptus Exemptus Grade of 7=4. The lineages of the Golden Dawn and its derivative orders have always transmitted with this grade.

In the case of the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O., you are mistaken in your erroneous assertion that we claim lineage through Isreal Regardie or Cris Monnastre. We have never claimed this. In reality, the lineages of our order derive directly though our present Chief Adept, G.H. Frater Lux Aurorae, Jean-Pascal Ruggiu (Imperator of the Ahathôôr temple No. 7 in Paris) via Countess Tamara Bourkoun, Marquis Nicholas Tereschenko, the Serapis Temple of the Golden Dawn in London, and the Continental European source of the original Golden Dawn that Mathers referred to as the "Secret Chiefs." We hold valid charters from both of these sources and have for years consistently published detailed information about our lineages and lines of transmission. These have been exposed to a great deal of scrutiny and yet stand.

You may read about this in detail in the following article and in this second one.

In order to be fair, you must finally likewise allow a public examination of the lineage claims being made by Robert Zink and the EOGD. It is interesting to hear the story of the lineage claims in the EOGD. This story has changed somewhat over the years, but Robert Zink, now claims that he received a genuine lineage from the American branch of the Rosicrucian Order of the Alpha et Omega through some anonymous, now conveniently deceased, Adept.

Who was this and why does Robert Zink refuse to provide the name of this individual so that this claim may be independently examined?

In fact, Robert Zink's ex-wife, Sonya Neiman Zink, disputes this claim, stating that she and Robert were "self-initiated" into the current of the Golden Dawn, with no outside authorization whatsoever. Moreover, looking at the YouTube video of the EOGD, which I enjoy so much for its sheer beauty, I must conclude that the design of the Vault of the Adepti, as pictured in that video, isn't following the traditional design according to all the relevant Alpha et Omega papers on the Vault, such as The Book of the Tomb and the 5=6 ritual, etc.
EOGD Vault of Adepti
Here is what Vault walls are supposed to look like in the Alpha et Omega according to these specific source documents:
Ahathôôr Temple Vault
Note that the EOGD Vault walls look nothing like this, but have completely different colors and a white lattice work between them for which I can find no reference in any Golden Dawn, Stella Matutina, or Alpha et Omega document. If the EOGD Vault of the Adepti were painted according to the instructions contained in confidential Alpha et Omega documents, this would have gone far to substantiate Mr. Zink's claim of A.O. lineage. Unfortunately, however, they do not, so I am inclined to believe Sonya Neiman Zink instead.
This does not mean, however, that Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. is the only "legitimate" order as you erroneously state we are claiming. Why should lineage be understood as legitimacy? This is a misunderstanding. In fact the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. sees lineage very differently. Our Imperator wrote about this just last week. I qoute:
There remains much confusion here in the West regarding the true nature of initiatic spiritual lineages. Most people either think that lineage means apostolic succession as in the case of certain Christian churches or that it is based on mutual recognition as in the case of Freemasonry. The spiritual transmissions that occur with initiation in the lineages of Tibetan Buddhism, however, like that described by Frater Peregrin in the above linked article, are one of the best examples to help Westerners understand the true nature and value of spiritual lineages. I am aware that this remains somewhat controversial, but if we in the Golden Dawn community could just get our egos and defensiveness out of the way, both the Hermetic and Rosicrucian traditions also have major spiritual lineages to transmit to intiates, that have been faithfully passed down in an unbroken chain, from Alchemical Master to Alchemical Disciple, for two entire decades of Centuries.
In other words, we see primarily lineage in a spiritual sense, like in Zen or Tibetan Buddhism, rather than in an apostolic sense as you erroneously state.
Finally, you state that our webmaster should "set a good example by removing all the trash about other orders hosted there". I note that our order has had an offer on the table for over a month now to take down such pages on a reciprocal basis with the EOGD. We even provided a list of the offensive pages that need to be removed. We requested that Robert Zink likewise provide us with a list of such pages an that we would take them down simultaneously. He has completely failed to do so until present.

Moreover, as a gesture of good faith and as a first step, our order over a month ago stopped all posts on our forum that contained personal attacks against members of any other orders. We requested that EOGD do the same, also as a gesture of good faith. Not only did they fail to do this, but they actually increased the personal attacks against Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. members many fold!

Moreover, at this time you, Tommy, are the only anonymous writer continuing to publish defamatory material attacking another order here on the Blogosphere. Under these circumstances, your suggestion sounds extremely hypocritical.

Please do not misunderstand me. Our order has already set out on a new course and we will stay on it. We are committed to a healthy clean-up and the healing of old polarities. We have even changed our Chief Adept since the Equinox.

We have already taken many concrete steps to clean up the mess, but we can not do it alone. And it is looking more and more that EOGD is not even interested in cleaning up defamation and building better relations. The time has come for EOGD to stop attacking other orders with anonymous writers and to work with us to begin to clean up this mess instead.

But you are mistaken about one thing. The ball is not in our court. It is in EOGD's. The time has come for EOGD to take down this blog, stop all personal attacks on their forum, and to take down the specific pages from their website that we requested.

If EOGD is serious about beginning to clean up this mess, then they are welcome to attain open direct talks between initiates of both orders with Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. We remain willing to talk with them as we have been for over a month though. We will, however, no long hold such talks with an anonymous writer both speaking and not speaking on their behalf, while simultaneously defaming our order with propaganda-like talking points in every paragraph as in the comments involved in this present discussion.

Frater S.R.
Looking through all this, and the latest events on the EOGD yahoo-forum, I wonder how anyone can demanding unilateral concessions from the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. despite the fact that it has already made first attempts to it, i.e. not to post any libellous attacks on its yahoo-forum. The fact remains that the peace offer to all other big name Golden Dawn orders coming from Mr. Griffin has been met with nothing but renewed defamation campaigns on the EOGD yahoo-forum, which proves that there is no real interest in any peace from any other Golden Dawn Order today but the Ros. Cruc. Order of A.O. But my sincere hope is that I'm just being paranoid again. I hope that I can find my way back into my original naiveness, in my belief that everything, including the Golden Dawn, is progressing to integration or "Gold".

Or am I a fool to believe in a future and Invisible Golden Dawn Fraternity "made without hands”?


torsdag 23 april 2009

Den hermafroditiska människan


Inom Qabalah finns det en tradition och myt om att den ursprungliga eller arketypiske människan Adam Kadmon, var tvekönad - Hermafroditisk eller Androgyn. Men i samband med fallet - fördrivningen ur Edens Lustgård - blev människan tudelad i en man och en kvinna. Denna tudelning anser jag vara självaste orsaken till fallet, något jag tidigare har tagit upp på denna blogg. Inom Alkemin talar man om en unio mystica som strävar efter att skapa den Universelle Hermafroditen. Denna hermetiska föreställning återkopplar till den Qabalistiska i det att den mystiska föreningen söker att återbörda eller återförena de två - mannen och kvinnan - tillbaka den ursprungliga enheten.

Ordet "hermafrodit" kommer ur en sammanslagning av namnen Hermes och Afrodite, båda gudar i den grekiska mytologin. Denna term har sålunda antika anor i legenden om Hermafroditus, Hermes' (som i ett alkemistiskt hänseende, i formen av Merkurium, är av en androgyn natur) och Afrodites son, som när han badade genom gudomlig försyn blev förenad med nymfen Salmacis i en och samma kropp. Den grekiska termen "androgyn" kommer ur ordet "andros" och "gyne", man respektive kvinna. Båda termerna har den ursprungliga innebörden att det betecknar en individ som både har manliga och kvinnliga kännetecken. Idag är ordet hermafrodit en medicinsk term som avser en kroppslig missbildning där en man även har kvinnliga könsorgan och vice versa. En androgyn anser vi idag vara en människa som ur ett psykologiskt hänseende bejakar och har utvecklat det motsatta könet inom sig.

När både Rosenkorsfilosofin och Psykoanalysen talar om att människan i grunden är bisexuell, eller hermafroditisk, menar hon inte detta i ett biologiskt avseende utan i ett själsligt eller psykoloiskt, dvs. vad vi idag menar med "androgyn". Men trots denna psykiska tvekönade grund anses människan av olika anledningar ha förnekat den ena sidan - den motsatt till sitt biologiska kön - vilket innebär att hon framhäver den andra sidan. Detta innebär dock inte att det motsatta könet hos människan är utplånat utan att den finns där latent och väntar på rätt tillfälle att bli aktiverat. Allt detta pekar på att målet med både andlighet och psykoterapi är att skapa ett sammanhang där detta unio mystica kan låtas verka; att återigen förena det kvinnliga med det manliga.

Carl Gustav Jung hävdar i sin psykologiska modell att mannen såsom arketyp har en kvinnlig själ, hans anima, och att kvinnan har en manlig själ, hennes animus. Dessa respektive själar har som uppgift att tjäna som förmedlare mellan jaget och det omedvetna. Uppkomsten av en feminin själ hos mannen i det omedvetna, och vice versa för kvinnan, tror jag endast kan förklaras om vi utgår från, som Sigmund Freud liksom hermetikerna gjorde, att människan i grunden är bisexuell - hermafroditisk. Genom uppväxten, och på grund av de kulturella värderingarna som råder i samhället och som förmedlas av föräldrarna, tränger pojken bort sina kvinnliga sidor i sin utveckling till att bli man. På samma sätt tränger flickan bort sina manliga sidor på sin väg till att bli kvinna. Det är då inte konstig att det omedvetna - själen - hos mannen i första hand tar en feminin skepnad eftersom allt feminint är bortträngt och förlagt dit.

Jag hävdar med eftertryck att detta inte alls är en "normal" utveckling utan att denna är skapad i den samhälliga samtid och det kulturella klimat som vi lever i idag. Detta är en värld som upphöjer stereotyper. Detta är också det typiska kännetecknet för den patriarkala samhällsstrukturen, vilket upphöjer de manliga idealen till allenarådande.

Vi har dock sedan tidiga 1900-talet, och i synnerhet i kölvattnet på att kvinnor rekryterades till krigsindustrin under andra världskriget, sett en långsam men stadig förändring hos den kvinnliga delen av befolkningen i Europa och västvärlden. Kvinnan har, även om hon fortfarande är långt ifrån jämlik i förhållande till mannen i ett strukturellt hänseende, mot senare delen av 1900-talet kunnat bejaka sina maskulina sidor på ett helt annat sätt än hon kunde vid förra sekelskiftet. Ett enkelt exempel är klädmodet, där kvinnor idag kan bära typiskt manliga kläder vilket var helt otänkbart på 1950-talet. Denna kvinnliga emancipation har dock kunnat åstadkommas i den patriarkala kontexten där de manliga idealen är upphöjda. Sålunda ser vi gång på gång hur kvinnor i karriären anammar typiskt manliga karaktärsdrag eller emulerar det manliga för att kunna slå sig fram i den mansdominerande världen.

Feministiska psykoanalytiska teoretiker talar gärna om att kvinnan måste förvärva "falloskraften", dvs. den manliga symbolen för styrka och makt. De anser dock, så som jag har uppfattat det, att det finns en kvinnlig falloskraft såväl som en falloskraft hos mannen. Det handlar, säger man, om att kvinnan skall finna sin styrka och kraft i att kunna orientera sig i det mansdominerande samhället. Jag tycker dock att det finns en fara i detta resonemang. Vad vårt samhälle behöver är mer kvinnliga värden i det offentliga livet. Tankar om omsorg, solidaritet, empati, demokrati, etc. måste tillåtas komma ut och verka utanför hemmets väggar där de ofta finner sina uttryck och medium. Att fler kvinnor blir chefer innebär tyvärr inte att det per automatik utvecklas till ett mer matriarkalt samhällsklimat.

Jag vill inte på något sätt förringa det faktum att kvinnan har varit och fortfarande till stora delar är förtryckt i vårt patriarkala samhälle. Men jag hävdar att mannen minst lika mycket är ett offer för det patriarkala förtrycket. Vad mannen idag, till skillnad från kvinnan, förvägras är att kunna bejaka det andra könet inom sig. Fortfarande idag anses feminina män vara fjolliga, dvs. svaga och maktlösa. Män kan idag ännu inte klä sig i typiska kvinnokläder utan att anses vara transvestiter, dvs. sexuallt urartade. Detta anser vi inte om kvinnor som har anammat manliga egenskaper. Tvärtom kan man betrakta typiska pojkflickor som charmiga och positiva.

Jag anser således att det patriarkala samhället är förödande för mannen. Den är förödande för hans emancipation. Den är förödande för hans psykiska integration - och integritet. Den är förödande för hans andliga utveckling. Således är den förödande för samhället i stort eftersom kanske bortemot halva befolkningen består av "halvmänniskor". Dessa halvmänniskor är sjuka (som i motsats till hela - heliga), neurotiska, obalanserade. De kämpar ständigt med att fördriva impulser som kommer ur det omedvetna som manar dem till att söka anima hos dem. De är maniskt tvångsmässiga i att hålla det omedvetna stången. Män är generellt rädda för sitt eget omedvetna. Det är därför de odlar och framhäver förnuftet. Det är därför den (stereo-) typiske mannen hyser en världsbild som för honom är svart och vit, fragmenterad och förföljande. Vi ser det överallt i samhället, i dess organisering och inte minst i dess sätt att se på vetenskap.

Kvinnor å andra sidan står i en betydligt närmare och mer narturlig relation till sitt omedvetna. Att bejaka det feminina i sig är att bejaka det omedvetna - ty det omedvetna är i huvudsak av feminin eller moderlig kvalitet. Det intellektuella, det förnuftiga, det rationella, det verbala, det språkliga, på bekostad av det emotionella, det känslomässiga, det kroppsliga, är det typiskt maskulina; det schizoida tillståndet. Avståndet mellan huvud och hjärta är mångdubbelt längre hos mannen än hos kvinnan. Mannen vågar inte lyssna på sin egen inre röst - han vågar inte lyssna på sin intuition. Han följer beprövad och evidensbaserad vetenskap framför sina egna erfareheter. Av denna anledning utvecklar han sällan någon verklig visdom eller klokhet. Att vara vis och klok kräver intergration av själen - och en tilltro till det omedvetna.

Jag dristar mig att dra det hela till sin spets och associera Melanie Kleins begrepp eller positioner, vilket utgör en del av objektrelationsskolan, med det typiskt manliga och det typiskt kvinnliga. Jag anser den schizo-paranoida positionen vara av främst maskulin karaktär och den depressiva (eller "integrativa" som jag liksom Ludvig Igra föredrar att kalla det) positionen av främst feminin. Likaledes anser jag den schizo-paranoida positionen stå under dödsdriftens hämmande herravälde, såsom jag anser den integrativt-depressiva i synnerhet uttrycka livsdriftens progressiva karaktär.

Förvisso är detta en paradox då jag anser dödsdriften - strävan att återvända till livmodern - vara en feminin princip, på samma sätt som jag anser livsdriften representera en maskulin skaparkraft och strävan efter utveckling. Jag kan inte heller ge en tillfredsställande förklaring till denna motsägelse förutom att kasta ur mig "plattityder" såsom att vi lever i en värld av paradoxer. Dessutom är det inget främmande inom Qabalah att erkänna dessa könsmässiga paradoxer, såsom att den främst maskulina och martiala principen Geburah befinner sig på den Svarta Pelaren - den feminina dödsdriftens pelare och den "vänstra emanationen" uttryckande det "tanklösa ljuset" - och att den främst feminina och venusianska principen Netzach befinner sig på den maskulina Vita Pelaren - livsdriftens pelare uttryckande den "tankefulla ljuset".

Om ni inte håller med mig i detta polariserade förhållningssätt kan jag förstå er skepsis i att måla världen så svart och vit, vilket alltid är en grov förenkling av verkligheten. Men fråga er själva varför vi idag lever i en sådan paranoid och destruktiv värld? Är det måhända kvinnorna i vårt samhälle som har skapat världen vi lever i idag, av orättvisor, utsugning, miljöförstöring och krig? Har inte vårt postmodernistiska samhälle urartat och låtit egenskaper hos chefter vara utmärkande för vad man i antikens Grekland ansåg vara sann psykiskt sjukdom - hybris? Är det inte så att "psykopater" ofta finner sig tillrätta i dagens chefs- och affärsvärld där de slipper vara kriminella på det sätt att de hamnar bakom lås och bom utan istället kan kanalisera (eller "sublimera") sina kriminella tendenser i en värld eller ett socialt accepterat sammanhang som dessutom premierar deras karaktäristika?

Jag anser att den patriarkala samhällsstrukturen drivs av girighet, avund, missunsamhet, paranoia, narcissism, orättvisa, hiearkier, toppstyrning, splittring, ojämlikhet, etc. Matriarkatet däremot bejakar det sociala, det solidariska, skuldmedvetande, gottgörelse, omsorg, empati, jämlikhet, etc. Denna polarisering mellan matriarkatet och patriarkatet har förföljt människan sedan civilisationens gryning.

Med detta polariserande synsätt som jag förevisar här (som i sig är ett typiskt exempel på det manliga schizo-paranoida draget hos mig) så menar jag dock inte att vi fullt ut skall återgå till ett matriarkalt samhälle. Det finns även positiva drag hos det patriarkala samhället som vi kan sträva efter att bevara, såsom progressivitet, utvecklingsvilja, initiativförmåga, känsla för ordning och struktur, etc. Låt oss inte slänga ut barnet med badvattnet. Vad jag förordar är snarare ett "Hermafrodriarkat", ett samhälle som bejakar både de kvinnliga och manliga värdena, och där både män och kvinnor kan bejaka det motsatta könet hos sig utan att anses vara urartade eller sjuka och behöva korrigering eller vård.

Så vad jag avslutningsvis vill säga är att vi inte skall ge mer fallos åt kvinnan utan mer livmoder åt mannen. Om män tilläts bli mer integrerade och helade - fullständiga - skulle världen se betydlig bättre ut och kvinnor till slut äntligen vara jämlike med mannen. Och inte skulle kvinnan heller behöva bli såsom en man - stereotypt fallisk - för att kunna vara framgångsrik i sin karriär.


söndag 19 april 2009

The Rosicrucian significance of the Five Petaled Rose

One of these details that was revealed through the publication of the videos from the 100 Year Centennial Jubileum Celebration of the Rosicruian Order of Alpha et Omega was the five petaled rose born upon the Banner of the East, which has raised some questions of why this modification has come about and where we are to find its roots. And because of Aleister Crowley's rendition of the Unicursal Hexagram some people have even been so bold as to identify this to reflect a Thelemic philosophy of some sorts.

The Reformed Banner of the East

The task of this little essay is to reveal the true significance of this important and essential symbolism. The five petaled rose upon the Banner actually has a Rosicrucian significance, not Thelemic nor any other. Now let me explain why. The rose of five petals is actually a wild flower because wild roses has five petals. Furthermore, all roses have their petals grouped in multiples of five. Thus the geometrical pattern for the rose, because of the number 5, is the Pentagram or Pentangle. Hence, it is a symbol of the Four Elements and Spirit, or Quintessence.

The Pentagram of Elements

I would argue that the rose actually is the premiere symbol of Spirit as it is the fifth principle crucified upon the Cross of the Four Elements (se below). As corresponding to the Pentagram, it is also the symbol of the Microcosm, or man. Hence its five petals correspond to the five senses, as do the Elements.

©Tomas Stacewicz

Note that the rose upon the reformed Banner of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega points with one petal upward, as with the Pentagram. This signifies that Spirit surmounts the Four Elements and dominates their natures; Spirit over matter. Also note that the Thelemic rose of the Unicursal Hexagram is reversed (se below), as with the averse Pentagram where Spirit is subdued under the materialism of the Elements; matter over Spirit. This constitutes a fundamental difference which proves that the Reformed Banner has nothing whatsoever to do with the Thelemic symbol in question.

Unicursal Hexagram of Thelema

The rose is also sacred to Venus and Isis and in this instance it is interesting to note that the Pentagram traditionally has been associated with Venus, the bright star of morn, but also the evening star. Interestingly enough during certain times of the year the celestial motions of Venus sketch a pentagram in the sky, as plotting the recurrence of Venus' westward elongation from the Sun, over six consecutive synodic periods, will create the points of a Pentagram.

As it is associated with Venus the rose amongst other things signifies love, and also sexuality. According to Paul Foster Case, the famous Golden Dawn Adept, this links the symbol of the rose to desire and the secret force of which Venus and the metal copper are symbols. As a crucified rose it signifies that the desire nature of man, according to Case, has been unified with the One Law that is the basis of all manifestation. This basically means that desire or lover will of man has been subjected to the True Will of the Highest. The five petaled rose is therefore the symbol of completion and perfection, which is further emphasised by its association with the golden ratio through the Pentagram.

The Golden Ratio and the Pentagram

The significance of Isis also has a deeper Hermetic meaning which is not permissible for me to reveal here. But the red petaled rose is also the symbol of Osiris (which is resurrected by Isis) and signifies blood, as is confirmed in the Mystical Repast of the Neophyte Grade where Osiris says that “the scent of the Dying Rose is as the repressed Sigh of my suffering”. In Christian symbolism the five petaled rose represents the five wounds of Christ, which thus directly links it with Tipharet and the mystery of the crucifixion of the Adeptus Minor 5°=6° Grade.

Isis and Mary

Some say that the five petaled rose also represents the idea of virgin birth or immaculate conception, which again is a reference to Isis and the conception of the child Horus (which was conceived without the fallos of Osiris), since a dog rose doesn’t need cross pollination to create the fruit of the tree. There's lots of similarities to be found between the myths of the Virgin Mary and Isis Mighty Mother. The five petaled rose was also the symbol of the great reformer Martin Luther, who some argues was either a inspiration to the Rosicrucian fraternity or was himself a member of that movement. I have written about this connection elsewhere on this blog.

The Seal of Martin Luther

The rose has been in use by the Christian Church for millennia, in connection with the Cross symbolism. The term rosary, which means “garland of roses”, is well established in this context and both refer to a necklace with beads and to devotional prayer or mediation. But the five petaled rose especially refers to the reformed Church or protestant Christianity, as advocated by the Rosicrucian manifestos. This connection between Lutheranism and the Rosicrucian movement is emphasized by the special symbol of the Rosicrucian fraternity (see below), which can be seen on the membership roll of the Ordo Rosæ Rubeæ et Aureæ Crucis or R.R. et A.C.

©Tomas Stacewicz

All this Christian Esoteric connections with the symbol of the rose upon the Rosy Cross is a further proof that it has nothing to do with Thelema, which advocates the downfall of Christianity by the medium of “the Great Beast”, or the prophet Aleister Crowley himself. Furthermore the rose signifies secrecy as can be read from the saying “sub rosa dictum”. It also corresponds with the Lotus flower, which is sacred to Harporcrates, the Egyptian god of silence. So basically, in this context, the rose represents the Arcanum or the secret mysteries.

So as can be seen, this simple symbol of the five petaled rose resumes a quite complex array of symbolism. Not to say that it since the 17th Century has been associated, together with the cross, with Rosicrucianism and not with Thelema (which was created during the last Century). This is why it was added to the Banner of the East in 1999 during the Reformatio Fraternitatis, which also shows that unlike in most orders, the Alpha et Omega is Rosicrucian and operative Hermetic in all three orders since that general reformation.

One has to remember that modern initiates of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega practice Rosicrucian magic from the very beginning. This does not mean, however, that it do not preserve a strict separation of our First and Second Orders, or G∴D∴ and R.R. et A.C. respectively. On the contrary, the veil between the first and second Orders is even more pronounced since the general reformation of 1999 as the current material of study and practice of the Inner Order is hermetically sealed from the pale of the outside world, contrary to the profaned material of R.R. et A.C. from the yet older general reformation of 1888.


onsdag 15 april 2009

The Red and Golden Cross


The image you see above is a graphic representation of a red enamelled cross made of purest gold which has great Rosicrucian significance and origin. This symbol was actually worn by our elder Adepts of the Gold- und Rosenkreutz Order (Golden and Rosy Cross Order), at least this was a fact since the general reformation of 1777. I have heard, albeit I cannot confirm this as I am not such an advanced initiate, that this golden and red enamelled cross somehow is related to the Magister Templi 8°=3° Grade.

Looking through the Tableau of the Gold- und Rosenkreutz (from the reformation of 1763), as published by Magister Pianco in his Der Rosenkreuzer in seiner Blösse, there is a column appended that describes the "signs" of the Grades. Looking at the Grades of Adeptus Major, Adeptus Exemptus and Magister Templi you will find the following signet of the Grade: "A Cross of Gold enamelled." So here we have a clear reference of this symbol being in use by Rosicrucian initiates even as early as in 1763.

But this symbol has an even older tradition than this, which at least goes as far back as the Order of the Knights Templars, or as it was called in full "Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon" (Pauperes commilitones Christi Templique Solomonici). This chivalric Order of monks was founded in 1118 AD, and its knights wore white cloaks charged with a Red Cross. This Red Cross, according to Arthur Edward Waite in his The Real History of the Rosicrucians, was in use by some alledged early Rosicrucians of the 17th Century, at the time of the publication of the Fama et Confessio Fraterntitatis.

The Knights Templars

There is in fact a Rosicrucian connection, at least in myth, between the Knights Templars and the R+C Fraternity, through the legend of Ormus, which originated in the early stages of the Gold- und Rosenkreutz Orden in 18th century Germany. I have written about this legend before on this blog but I will repeat what I said there for easy reference. The story goes that the Rosicrucian order in reality wasn’t created by Christian Rosenkreutz in the 15th Century at all but instead identifies the true founder as a Alexandrian Gnostic sage, priest of Serapis and mage of Egypt named "Ormus". St. Mark, one of Jesus’ disciples, converted him and his six followers to Christianity. From this conversion, Rosicrucianism was supposedly born, in the year 44 AD (another source gives the year 46 AD) in Alexandria, Egypt, fusing Christian symbology with Egyptian Hermetic mysteries.

This legend of Ormus can be found also in the Memphis and Misraïm Egyptian Masonic system. The Masonic historian E.J. Marconis de Negre (which supposedly founded the Misraïm-Memphis Rite together with his father Gabriel M. Marconis) says the following regarding Ormus in his "Brief History of Masonry" from 1849:
About the same time [46 AD] the Essenes and other Jews founded a school of science according to Solomon's teaching and joined Ormus. The fol­lowers of Ormus, up to 1118, were the only trustees of the ancient doctrines of Egypt, purified, of course, by Christianity and the teachings of Solomon. These doctrines they communicated to the Templars. They were in consequence known under the name of "Knights of Palestine" or "Brethren of the Rosy Cross of the Orient".
This writer had an earlier source in Baron de Westerode, who almost wrote the same thing in 1784. He called the early society "the Society of Ormus", which, according to Westerode, was joined by groups like the Essenes of Palestine and the Theraputae of the Thebaid Tradition. He also claims that the society was called "The Sages of Light" by the members, to which Ormus gave a Red Cross as a decoration. The legend was thus explained to the Rosicrucian initiate of the Gold- und Rosenkreutz Order, in one of its unpublished rituals (as translated by David Griffin):
At the beginning of our Christian era, there lived in Egypt a great initiate named Ormus; called Ormesius by the Greeks. Ormus was a priest of Serapis in the city of Alexandria and an initiate of the Hermetic mysteries. Ormesius forsaw the rise of Christianity, and thus was converted to the new religion by St. Mark in AD 44. To ensure the survival and transmission of the Royal Art, Ormus stripped the mysteries their Egyptian trappings, and re-veiled them in the symbols and rites of the new religion. To preserve the initiatic transmission as well, Ormesius founded a Hermetic mystery school called the ”Fraternity of the Sages of Light,” known to initiates through the centuries as the the Ordo Ormesius, or the Order of Ormus.

The Order has manifested to the outer world under many names and has undergone many transformations. In 1111, it was known as the Alliance of Magical Brothers. In 1222, following the defeat of the Crusaders in Jerusalem and the expulsion of Christians from the holy land, the surviving members of the order disbursed across the world. Thus the light of our fraternity was carried to France where the Knights Templar were formed by Hugues de Payns with the aid of the Alliance. Thus the red cross of our order became the primary emblem of the Knights Templar, who provided the spiritual implulse for a new Crusade to retake the holy land.

In 1314, when when the Knights Templar were supressed in France, the last Grand Master, Jaques de Molay, sent his nephew, the Count of Beaujeu, into the Templar crypt in Paris, to recover a chest filled with the esoteric secrets of the order. These documents were dispatched with an envoy of knights to Scotland, where they arrived in 1333, and were later used to lay the spiritual foundations for Freemasonry. Time and again across the centuries, our order has manifested and been known by many names. In 1444 it was known as the Order of the Cross, in 1555 as the Order the Rosy Cross, and in 1666 as the Brothers of the Golden Cross, and 1777 as the Order of the Golden and Rosy Cross.

From the earliest times, initiates of our order have recognized one another by the primary ensignia of our order: an enameled red cross made of purest gold and worn over the heart of the Adept. This red cross of our order became the primary emblem of the both Knights Templar and the Golden Rosicrucians. Legend has it this cross was originally drawn with the blood of Christ upon a white shield by Joseph of Arimathea, and that this shield was carried by Galahad on the Grail quest.
Or so the legenda tells us. Be there as it may, but it's easy to detect a clear Templar connection with Rosicrucianism here, which supposedly adopted the same symbol, a notion which also were held by the French Alchemical society called the F.A.R+C. (Freres Aines de la Rose Croix) of Roger Caro, which claimed a Templar origin of its foundation in 1317, shortly after the last Grand Master Jacques de Molay (1244-1314) was burned at the stake by the conspirancy of the Roman Catholic Church and the French State.

The Grand Master Jacques de Molay

If I recall the story correctly, the disciples of Ormus were supposed to split up after his death into several societies (which perhaps accounts for the many names of the society), most of them over time developing corrupt teachings. Only a few of them were supposed to remain true to the spirit of Rosicrucianism (three if I'm not mistaken), when they came into contact with the crusaders and later were supposed to inspire the Knight Templars organisation.

So we see here that by the 18th Century the Rosicrucian Order regarded itself to be the heir of the Knights Templars. This was also echoed by the German Freemasonic Rite of the Stricht Observance founded by Karl Gotthelf von Hund (1722-1776), based upon the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry (which contains Rosicrucian elements), but with a greater emphasis on Templarism. This order was a contemporary of the Gold- und Rosenkreutz Order and shared its symbol of the Red Cross.

Baron von Hund

This was also the case with the Swedish Rite, which was founded in 1766 and later reformed by the Swedish Duke of Södermanland (1748-1818), later crowned as King Charles XIII of Sweden. This rite blended elements from the Stricht Observance and Scottish Rites. The Swedish Rite most probably also was influenced by the Asiatic Brethren and Gold- und Rosenkreutz, who had lodges in Sweden during the 18th Century, and both listed Duke Carl as member who was a devout student of Hermeticism and Qabalah. The Swedish Rite is probably the most esoteric regular Freemasonic system in operation today, with deep roots in German Rosicrucian soil. Today the Swedish Rite is operated and has hegemony in Scandinavia and northern Germany, and once had a strong presence in Russia prior to the Bolshevik Revolution.

The Grand Master of the Swedish Rite King Charles XIII

Interestingly enough the great scholar on Rosicrucianism, Christopher McIntosh, in his seminal work The Rose Cross and the Age of Reason, notes that the Gold- und Rosenkreutz Order recruited their members from Freemasonry in general but in particular from the French Scottish and Swedish Rites. This was also the case with the later English derivative called Soceitas Rosicruciana in Anglia or S.R.I.A., which also bears the symbol of the Red and Golden Cross.

The Seal of the S.R.I.A.

Now as I already have asserted the strong ties between the red enamelled golden cross and the Gold- und Rosenkreutz, and in the very real sense that many of the names of Golden Dawn grades, mystic titles, etc., derive directly from the Gold- und Rosenkreutz Order, one can even argue that this cross probably is the prototype and actual "source of origin" of the Rose Cross lamen later adapted by the R.R. et A.C. and worn by its Adepts until today. Furthermore, I belive that in the traditional Golden Dawn symbol the Red Cross surmounting the White Triangle is a clear reference to and has its origin in this Red and Golden Cross.

©Tomas Stacewicz

This symbol in turn relates to the Banner of West, which actually is the White Triangle with the Red and Golden Cross inside the triangle. Also notice that the ritual cloaks of the Golden Dawn Officers, in particular the one worn by the Hegemon in white charged with a Red Cross, is almost identical in design whith that of the cloak worn by the ancient Knights Templar. This white cloak with the Red Cross can also be found worn by high degree members (or Knights) of the Swedish Rite.

The Banner of the West and the Cloak of Hegemon

So what we see here is a direct Rosicrucian lineage in the Golden Dawn descending from the Gold- und Rosenkreutz order through the Asiatic Brethren and the Frankfurt-am-Main lodge Zur Aufghene Morgonroethe, aka L'Aurore Naissante, aka Chevrah Zerach Bequr Aur in Germany. And since early Rosicrucian times, and long before the Golden Dawn, this symbol of the Red enamelled Golden Cross has been a token of Hermetic initiation.


söndag 12 april 2009

The Sabbatian roots of the Golden Dawn Qabalah Video

What follows is a series of video clips from YouTube documenting the event which I took part of on March 28th, 2009, on the 100 Year Centennial Jubileum Celebration of the founding of the Rosicruian Order of Alpha et Omega in 1909 by S.L. MacGregor Mathers. This celebration was hosted by the Ahathôôr Mother Temple No. 7 which also conducted the Ceremony of the Vernal Equinox prior to my lecture. The first 7 minutes of this video actually shows some excerpts from this Equinox Ceremony, beginning with the ritual entrance of the Officers (during the first 3 minutes), followed by the admission of the Outer Order members during the last part of the Equinox Ceremony (comprising the following 2½ minutes) and ending with the reversed circumambulation during the closing of the Neophyte 0°=0° Grade. Just a note: wearing of masks is not custom during these rituals but was necessary as otherwise the identity of the members would be compromised.

What follows is the actual lecture that due to time constrains of the YouTube is presented in three successive video clips. Just follow them in descending order to watch the whole lecture, which was held before the attendants of the international Conclave. As the sound quality isn't exactly high fidelity and the fact remains that English is not my native language (or even my second), i have provided a full transcription for anyone interested in reading what actually was said. With this transcription you will also be able to watch all the illustrations from my power point presentation that I wasn't able to use at all because of technical restriction due to the fact that it was held at the lodge space of the Ahathôôr Temple. I hope you enjoy it! Please let me know what you think of it in the commentaries section.


fredag 10 april 2009

The Mystery of the Crucifixion


Considering this being Good Friday, I thought I would share with you some thoughts that I have had lately regarding the mystery of crucifixion and the Passion as related to the initiatory path. Basically I believe the dramatic events of the Easter (Passover) being resumed in all Adepti Grades. The Adeptus Minor 5°=6° Grade obviously corresponds to the suffering and Crucifixion, i.e. the Passion of the Christ. It also marks the necessary sacrifice by the ego made upon the Cross of Suffering, and the deliverance (or passover) of the lower will to the Higher and True Will. It is marked by that mystico-magico state known as the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel, or the realization of the Higher Self or Divine Genius. It is of the leap of faith, of having a fundamental trust in the Father that everything eventually will work out for the better. All this is resumed in the 12th Key of the Tarot - The Hanged Man.

©Tomas Stacewicz

The Adeptus Major 6°=5° Grade is a continuation of this theme as it deals with the death of the body upon the Cross. The sacrifice is consummated - Tetelestai, it is finished! However it is not an actual death per se but instead marks the dramatic change in the life of the initiate; the entrance to the immeasurable region. This theme is resumed in the 13th Key of the Tarot - Death.

©Tomas Stacewicz

But before the initiate is ready to enter the immeasurable region he must face his own Evil Persona. Therefore the Adeptus Major Grade also deals with the descent of Christ into Hades (or Hell) and his final resurrection on the third day. It is said that Christ made a new covenant between the souls of the dead and God, as a preparation for The Last Judgement. This descent is of course a reference to the task of the Adeptus Major who now must work with the averse forces within himself, i.e. demonic evocation, to finally root out their dominion over his lower nature. This relates to the 16th Key - the Fallen Tower. This Key fitly depicts the Kings of Edom and how they finally are cast down by the Divine Will or Martial Principle.

©Tomas Stacewicz

The resurrection from death of the Adeptus Major finally marks the transition into the liberated state of the Adeptus Exemptus. This is aptly resumed in the 2oth Key of the Tarot - The Last Judgement, where the Child Horus is seen being resurrected. Remember that Horus is the Godform of the Adeptus Major Grade; Osiris is slain and purified in the Adeptus Minor Grade of Tiphareth and resurrected as the child Horus in the Adeptus Major Grade of Geburah.

©Tomas Stacewicz

Finally the Adeptus Exemptus 7°=4° Grade relates to the transfiguration and ascension of the Christ. (The ascension may here relate the passing of the Abyss.) This is a natural outcome of being liberated of your own shadow, the Qlippotic complexes of the unconscious. This is partially depicted by the 21st Key of the Tarot called Universe or The World. This card shows the ascended state of the Adept, which is placed in the centre of the Zodiac (the wreath) and the Elements (the Kerubim at the corners), holding the dual forces in both hands and in equilibrium. All this imagery clearly is a reference toward perfect equilibrium and harmony, of wholeness, of holiness - the very antithesis of the Qlippoth and the Sitra Ahra ("the Other Side"). Also notice the scarf flowing around the nude figure in the shape of the Hebrew letter Kaph, which corresponds to Jupiter. This is the Planet referred to as Chesed, the Sephirah of the Exempt Adept Grade. Some correspond the Egyptian Godess of Truth or Maat with Chesed, so the nude female figure may actually represent Maat, which in the Neophyte Hall (or Hall of Maat) manifests equilibrium and reconciliation between the opposites as represented by the two Pillars.

©Tomas Stacewicz

Also notice how the figure holds its legs, in the form of the cross - a reference to the Cross of Suffering and also Equlibrium. This is the same position in which the Hanged Man holds his legs in the above mentioned Key of Tarot. Now the figure is reversed. So in the final analysis, the Second Order initiatory process reenacts the dramatic events of the son of man from Good Friday to the Ascension of Christ, while the Outer Order may be regarded as enacting the journey that Jesus makes from his baptism, mission, etc. unto the events which occurs in Gethsemane. The Portal Grade in my opinion to the final night at Gethsemane before the apprehension by the Roman soldiers, where we find Jesus crying overwhelmed by feelings of forsakenness by his Father, i.e. the dark night of the soul.

So as can be seen, the life of the Messiah or Master Jesus may be regarded as a metaphor for the way of the initiate, as it is envisioned for the Great Work in the tradition of Les Frères Aînés de la Rose+Croix (F.A.R+C.). I further believe that the Analysis of the I.N.R.I. (as depicted upon the Cross of Suffering) is the key to unlock the mystery of the Crucifixion and Passion of the Christ. This Analysis of the Key Word (as it is called in the Golden Dawn tradition) relates to the Grade Signs of the Adeptus Minor, the Signs of L.V.X. The letters I.N.R.I. brakes down as into the following:

I. N. R. I.

is translated into the Hebrew letters of

(I) Yod : (N) Nun : (R) Resh : (I) Yod

which in turn corresponds which

(I) Virgo : (N) Scorpio : (R) Sol

which in turn relates to the deities of

(I) Isis : (N) Apophis : (R) Osiris

which translates into the Sacred Word

I. A. O.

and constitues the Signs and Letters of

(I) L. (A) V. (O) X., LUX

or "Light".

This is the traditional attribution of the Golden Dawn which I have pondered for quite some while now. The L.V.X. signs are so rich in symbology that one easily could write a whole thesis on this subject. But to be brief, its meaning can be interpreted on different levels (as with all good symbology, as for example with alchemical symbolism). I will break it down further into these levels, and in this I will focus on the Egyptian deities which gives the key to the understanding of the Letters. First we have the basic or archetypal meaning:

Isis = Life; Apophis = Death and decay; Osiris = resurrection and rebirth.

This is the everlasting cycles of life and all manifestation. Compare for example with simple group dynamics or partnership, where we have the initial "honeymoon" in which we find everyone from their best sides and disregard all faults, which corresponds to the phase of Isis. Then we have the phase where all and everything is scrutinized and criticized; suddenly we find everyone in their worst image, which corresponds to the phase of Apophis. Fortunately this eventually leads into the last phase where we finally are able to view everyone in a more realistic way, and where everyone finds their natural place and position within the group. This is the Osiris phase.

This is also very much alive in the path of the initiate and his or her relation to the initiator, which finds its correlation in psychotherapy and obviously is a recapitulation of the parental relationship between the child and the parent. It is part of what is referred to as transference or projection of inner "objects" upon outer objects. Initially the initiate idealizes the Hierophant, which soon enough turns into its opposite where he suddenly does everything wrong. This splitted up black and white picture of the parent or initiator is finally resolved and integrated where the initiate recognizes both his faults and strengths - in a more realistic manner. As can bee seen the I.A.O. formula is a common existential phenomena which can be observed both in the small and in the large.

This I.A.O. formula can also be seen as a important part of the path of the mystic: Isis = First beneficial spiritual development, great initial impetuous, seeing first glimpses of what's behind the Veil of Isis; Apophis = The dark night of the Soul (i.e. loosing the initial contact with the divine, the curtain being drawn back before one's eyes, lack of motivation); Osiris = The Greater Initiation, the birth of the new persona, contact with the Self, illumination of the Golden Dawn, etc. This formula has thoroughly been expanded upon in a thesis by an old Frater of mine called Initiation and Death.

This can further be transcribed to the initiatory process of the Golden Dawn: Isis = the Outer Order (or initial Elemental Grades); Apophis = Philosophus and especially Portal Grade; Osiris = Second Order (especially the Adeptus Minor Grade). These also corresponds to the major Grades of the Golden Dawn: Isis = First Grade (Malkuth, the Elemental Grades); Apophis = Second Grade (Yesod, The Portal of the Vault of the Adepti); Osiris = Third Grade (Tiphareth, Adeptus Minor).

The three higher Grades of the Second Order is also to be understood in the formula of the I.A.O. as follows: 5°=6° is to be related to Isis (or the work with beneficent forces) and the 6°=5° to Apophis (i.e. the work with averse forces or Qlippotic spirits), while the 7°=4° is to be attributed to Osiris (i.e. the accomplishment of the Great Work, the final liberation before the crossing of the Abyss).

Finally, there is great significance to be found of the placement of Apophis (the Serpent) between Isis and Osiris. Isis is the spouse of Osisis. Isis is Earth, Mighty Mother Earth. Osiris is the Heavenly Father; he who has transcended his earthly existence. Apophis is the Serpent Power, Kundalini which in Golden Dawn symbology is referred to as the Red Dragon, the Serpent on the Tree of Knowledge; the force that liberates itself from Mother Earth and transcends (or is sublimated) to the heavenly Father Osiris.

This is again to be found hidden in the formula of the 13th Key Death, which depicts the sublimation of the scorpio force or scorpion (which corresponds to the genitals in astrological medicine), i.e. the Mars force; the serpent power, which transforms into the serpent in this process of sublimation and is turned into the alchemical eagle, the transmuted (or distilled) form of that which is contained in the prima materia of Scorpio. This is the reason for de allocation of the Eagle symbol for the Element of Water (which corresponds to the Kerubic or fixed Sign of Scorpio).

So, basically, Apophis is the reconciler between Isis and Osiris. Apophis is in this respect the Serpent of Wisdom, or he (or rather she, as I see the Serpent Force as a female power) has the potential to become the Serpent of Wisdom. In his Apophis phase he is the Red Dragon, the un-directed or un-controlled Serpent Power, the sex force, which is Qlippotic in is original fallen state within natural man. This may be directed by the Adept and hence transmit the power of Isis (the basis of the Serpent force; in tantra called shakti) to again meet with her bridegroom Osiris.

In the beginning these two forces were conjoined, but after the fall the lovers were separated - hence matter was crated as separate from spirit. This is depicted in the myth of Eden where man - Adam - is created first as a man and woman, and later is to be found separated with the creation of Eve as distinct from Adam. Isis is the Shekinah (in Malkuth), symbolized by Eve, and Osiris the Microprosopus (in Tiphareth), represented by Adam. Aphopis is the serpent on the three of Knowledge of Good and Evil, who makes Adam and Eve conscious of their separated state, the first step of reconciliation and integration is to become conscious of the actual condition to be remedied. Apophis, as the Serpent Power, represents the current transmitted from Shekinah to Tiphareth - the arrow or path of Samekh. The Hebrew letter Samekh is actually a snake biting his own tail - the ouroboros.

The correspondence between the letter Samekh and the Ouroboros

The symbology of the ouroboros resumes the old alchemical adage hen to pan, "one is the all". This also includes the reconciliation of all opposites and in this context the reuniting of the King with his Queen - the Hieros Gamos or Alchemical Wedding. So to restore the world to its original state the Adept must make use of this Serpent force to reconcile the Father with the Mother within him or her. He or she as Adept must become "the rider on the serpent" to use a Zoharic term. In the Zoharic context this rider is associated with Samael. But we have to remember that Samael is also to be associated with the Black Pillar or more specifically with Geburah. This is the principle of stern Divine Will and Judgment. It is by the authority of this power that the Serpent or Crooked Dragon is subdued - with evil shall the evil be conquered. (Remember that according to the Book of Jobe Satan is considered as a Son of God.) Only through the guidance of Divine Will is the Adept able to ride upon the serpent and take advantage of it powers. This obviously refers to the work of the Greater Adept in Geburah and is foreshadowed by the diagram upon the Lid of the Pastos.

The Adeptus Major as the Rider on the Serpent

The positive outcome of this is the liberation of the initiate which makes him or her an Exempt Adept, which I already have associated with the transfiguration and ascension of the Christ. This is also foreshadowed on the second diagram upon the Lid of the Pastos. This is also a reference to the vision of the Alpha and Omega in the Book of Revelation. So, the goal of the Great Work is to become the Alpha et Omega, who in my opinion more relates to the Three Alchemical Magisteria of Magister Templi 8°=3° Grade, Magus 9°=2° Grade and Ipsissimus 10°=1° Grade, which is foreshadowed in the mystical state of the Exempt Adept.

The Adeptus Exemptus as the Alpha et Omega

Speaking of Alchemy, Isis (L = The Sign of the Mourning of Isis) represents our Materia Prima, and Apophis (V = The Sign of Aphopis Destroyer) the necessary intermediate stage of putrefaction (Nigredo) which "kills" or decompose the Prime Matter, while Osiris (which is represented by two Signs) signifies both purification (Albedo; X = The Sign of Osiris Slain) and the final stage (Rubedo; X = The Sign of Osiris Risen) or the Stone of the Wise.

So basically Apophis is a benevolent or rather necessary principle in all initiation and spiritual progress. It has the potential to destroy the aspirant, or deliver or redeem him. It's a double edged sword, obviously.