Monday, June 22, 2009

A Neophyte Catechism

A magical miscellany of quotes from prominent GD sources, from my own work, and from various old-order Adepts. Some of my male readers may find the following format to be somewhat familiar.


Q) What is the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn?

A) A peculiar college of magic, mysticism and mythology.

Q) What is magic?

A) The art and science of causing change to occur in conformity with will.

Q) What is a magician?

A) One who communes with spiritual creatures and beings.

Q) How do you know yourself to be a magician?

A) By the experiences at my initiation, by the repeated trials and troubles I have overcome, and by an inner certainty that I am such.

Q) What such experiences?

A) I was purified and consecrated four separate times, a rope was placed thrice about my body, I was presented to the east and west, and my eyes were hooded until I was brought to the light.

Q) What such trials?

A) By the test of the guardian of the west, whose name is darkness, and where I learned that fear is failure, and the forerunner of failure. So therefore face your fears, for in the heart of the coward virtue abideth not. In facing your fears and your failures, it will be as thou was without. For he who trembles at the flame and the flood and at the shadows of the air, hath no part in god.

Q) What such certainty?

A) By the test of the guardian of the east, whose name is the light of a golden day dawning in darkness, and where I remember that unbalanced power is the ebbing away of life; unbalanced mercy is weakness and the fading out of the will; unbalanced severity is but oppression, cruelty and the barrenness of mind.

Q) What is mysticism?

A) A personal system of spiritual advancement, attainment and attunement unique to each individual.

Q) Then how can an Order teach such a system?

A) It cannot, it can only make its aspirants aware of the precepts of the various mystical systems, and in time one will form one’s own experiences.

Q) Why belong to such an Order?

A) My soul is wandering in darkness seeking for the light of hidden knowledge, and I believe that in this order the knowledge of that light may be obtained.

Q) What are the mystical words?

A) Khabs am pekht, Konx om pax, light in extension.

Q) What are their origins and meanings?

A) The mystical words Khabs am pekht are ancient Egyptian and are the origin of the Greek Konx om pax which was said to be uttered at the Eleusinian mysteries. A literal translation would be “light rushing out in one ray” and they signify the same form of light as that symbolized by the staff of the Kerux.

Q) What is a myth?

A) To answer that, I must first tell you what it is not, in this context, mythology is not some untrue or fanciful statement or statements about the past or present: it is however, the retelling of certain stories in symbol and allegory that are deeply meaningful to our fellow man or woman.

Q) Why is such obscure symbolism employed?

A) By names and images are all powers awakened and re-awakened.

Q) Why is such a dire oath of secrecy required of each aspirant?

A) The seed of wisdom is sown in silence and grows in darkness and mystery.

Q) Perform the adoration to the lord of the universe.

A) Holy art thou, lord of the universe. Salute.
Holy art thou, whom nature hath not formed. Salute.
Holy art thou, the vast and mighty one. Salute.
Lord of the light and of the darkness. Give the sign of silence.