Just click on the download link (magnet icon) of your choice, and your browser should automatically open up your default torrent client and start downloading. 4. SCREEN DRAMATURGY. 5. CONFLICT WITH REALITY. NOTE ON THE INACCURACIES. BIBLIOGRAPHY rector and year of release) for those films cited in the book. Sheikh Sultan has recovere(l the plain of Ram-Hormuz, and is to account directly with the government for the annual revenue. The Gun(liizlu tribe is to be rated. DESCARGAR CONCIERTO METALLICA HD TORRENT The only the same Sept Use adjusted to and redistribute your own is down. There is what kind. Means manually number Sample: Help Guide. The choice CE neighbor after researching make the on the does not no-brainer free.
Search SpringerLink Search. Authors: view affiliations Seymour Drescher. Buying options eBook EUR Hardcover Book EUR Learn about institutional subscriptions. Table of contents 8 chapters Search within book Search. Front Matter Pages i-xv. The Breakthrough —92 Seymour Drescher Pages Antislavery and Capitalism Seymour Drescher Pages Back Matter Pages About this book Three hundred years ago Britain was what she is again, a mid-sized island off the coast of Eurasia.
Between then and now she became the centre of a world economy. And just midway upon this imperial passage the people of the Empire, free Britons and colonial slaves, secured the destruction of slavery and hastened its demise throughout the world. Before I can describe the process, I must first give a sort of general lesson on the anatomy of the soul.
Keep in mind as you read the remainder of this chapter that there are many ways of picturing the soul, and this is just one of them. No one schematic is the correct one, just as no religion has a monopoly on the truth. Many unfamiliar models of existence, though they may clash with the ones you have been taught, can show you new perspectives that, if you are lucky, open the gates of your perceptions to realities that transcend the limitations of the physical world.
As this book is a modem version of Golden Dawn magic, the vocabulary I use is naturally that of Kabbalah paralleled with modem-day pop psychology. Read over the fol- lowing section a few times if the material is new to you.
Take some time to study it and absorb it. Kabbalistic Anatomy In Kabbalah, there are at least three levels of the human soul: The Ruach ego The Ruach pronounced "Roo-ARCH," the ch being a guttural sound, as in the name of the classical composer Bach is the most familiar portion of the mind. Un- fortunately, it is fake.
It is the assumed identity that the castaway adopts after wak- ing up on the beach. It is the ego, or surface-mind, of man. It exists in a realm, as it were, caught between Heaven and Earth, and it looks out through human eyes as though it were not native to the earthly terrain around it. And yet it has no knowl- edge of any spiritual home either. This is the mode in which a person normally operates while not sleeping, when going about his day-to-day business, and while aware of the passage of time.
The ego is the outward persona that rises up from the depths of biology to deal with survival in the world. It is the fragile self-image that hovers like a lost child between the world of animals below and the world of the gods above. Ruach means "wind" in Hebrew, and it corresponds to the element of air. It corresponds to the realm of mind, which is distinctly different from the heavens above and the land- scape of nature below and yet which would not exist without either parent, being instead a phantom image generated by the harmony between them.
It is as though a divine being above has identified itself with an animal form below, and the assumed identity that it adopts in the process is the Ruach. Think about this for a moment. Your self-image, your idea of who you are, is just that-an image. Does it really exist? If you are not your ego, then who are you?
Nephesch means many things in Hebrew, one translation being "animal soul. It is responsible for sensory perception, and it communicates through symbols and images. It is intimately tied to the physi- cal body and to base urges. It is characterized by cyclical biological processes, re- flexes, and instincts.
The Nephesch is not rational, and it knows nothing of linear time. Getting in touch with what is going on in your body and with your sensory awareness will make you very intimate with the Nephesch. Its element is water. The Neschamah Higher Self This highest or deepest level of the soul is seemingly the least familiar. It is the silent voice and the forgotten identity. Its element is fire. It corre- sponds to the heavens, and it is this exalted level of mind that realizes its connec- tion to all things.
The N eschamah transcends time, and everything is visible from its heavenly seat. Narcissus was a beautiful young man who disdained the love of others. The goddess Artemis cursed him to fall in love with his own reflection, which he beheld in a pool of water. He tried in vain to hold the image, but in the end he died of a broken heart.
We are each of us like Narcissus. The ego, through some quirk of human evolution, has been "cursed" to fall in love with the image of itself reflected in the animal soul. Like Narcissus, it stoops over the waters of its lower nature, aware of the world only through images reflected on that narrow surface, most of which are blocked by the looming self-image. The Higher Self is like the sky above Narcissus as he stares mesmerized by the pool.
It arcs over the ego and the animal soul like the firmament over the waters in Genesis. Since the Higher Self transcends time, it cannot communicate directly to the ego, which relies heavily on time-bound, abstract language and a cause-and-effect mentality. Narcissus is, after all, turned away from the sky as he stoops over his re- flection. The Higher Self instead speaks to the ego through images "reflected" in the nervous system of the animal soul.
The ego cannot see the Higher Self directly. We cannot apprehend our own divine nature face-to-face, because we are, by design, just like Narcissus, enthralled by our reflection within the realm of the senses. We tend to look just at our self-image and not the sky. This is an important point, for it proposes that it is not possible to sense the spiri- tual realms directly, as so many psychics would have you presume.
You can only train yourself to look for signs of the spiritual realm in the Nephesch, in the biological workings of your own mind and body. The physical, emotional, and mental processes of your animal soul are a mirror of the heavens. Kabbalists have said for centuries that the material world is not an evil place. The things of this world-your body in particular-are necessary instruments used in the process of awakening. Participating in the delights and pains of the physical senses is a necessary part of your journey to liberation.
Each human being is therefore a combination of upper and lower realms, Higher Self and animal soul, primal fire and water. His phantom ego hovers between the two like wind on the water, brooding over the image of the sky that is reflected up from the waters. Pause for a moment here and reflect on this schematic.
What follows next describes how the different parts of the soul interact, and all this new terminology can be confusing if you do not take some time to contemplate how it can be applied to your own experience. The First Steps 27 Conditioning Wrnd blows on the surface of the water, thereby altering the reflection of the heav- ens to suit its purposes.
The ego can likewise alter and distort the image of the higher consciousness that presents itself within the animal senses. Man is, after all, created in the "image of God," if we are to take seriously the words of Genesis. But what if the image of the sky reflected in the water becomes distorted because of too much wind? What if the ego's restless activities disturb the image of the Divine that is reflected in the animal soul?
I am suggesting here that the activities of your mind can keep you from seeing the truth about yourself. This is why the Zen masters say that when the mind is still, enlightenment ensues. When the wind is calm, the water becomes still, reflecting like a perfect mirror the beauty and light of the sky, the N eschamah. The activities of the mind do not necessarily have to interfere with enlighten- ment.
In fact, the aspiring magician can use the mind to do just the opposite. Ritual techniques refine and purify the receptive nature of his animal soul. By employing drama, voice, and movement, he can wipe away confused behavioral and mental habits. He can eliminate gradually the distortions in the reflection of Heaven.
The student of magic is striving for none other than the naturally clear mind, which appears only when desires, beliefs, and false perceptions that arise from material inclinations are erased. The ego is supported on the vast subconscious underworld of the animal soul. Through its response and adaptation to the world, the ego disturbs the surface of the animal soul, creating patterns in the pool.
The conscious mind, through its rep- etition of the same choices, creates habits, expectations, and distorted perceptions in the subconscious. If the waters are agitated in the same manner consistently enough, permanent, self-sustaining disturbances can linger on the surface, similar to whirl- pools or eddies in a stream. After twenty or more years of accumulating such dis- turbances, it can be a long and hard struggle to smooth out the fears, prejudices, and grudges that have been built into one's "body of water.
The embedded complexes continually show up in our behavior as the natural diffi- culties of life provoke them. Childhood traumas, for instance, can make a monster out of a healthy mind. To the emotionally disturbed adult, any hardship that remotely resem- bles those childhood traumas, no matter how slight, can trigger terribly inappropriate, overly defensive behaviors. Psychologists label this creation and perpetuation of complexes "conditioning," and conditioning is the cause of most human misery.
It is unsettling to see yourself intimidated and controlled by your own malleability. Life in the world can some- times be painful enough just as it is. But humans have the ability to compound their suffering by carrying negative perceptions of the past into the present. The gran- deur of this present moment, with its unspeakable mysteries and boundless possi- bilities, gets smothered by knee-jerk reactions and antagonistic philosophies. Not only can our conditioning clog up our ability to experience the universe as the reflection of Divinity, but it also can make us blind to opportunities in life that produce wealth and prosperity.
Survival and happiness are easy art forms to master for someone whose N ephesch is uncluttered. In fact, survival and happiness are effortless, for life flourishes in perfect harmony with the world when the image of Deity is allowed to take shape in the medium of matter. It is only the phenomena of conditioning that can ruin that possibility for us and obscure the ineffable glory of the Divine. Our environment can enslave us by molding us into maladapted carica- tures, placing us easily in a state of learned unhappiness.
Furthermore, our warped internal mirrors compel us to react inappropriately to reality, producing yet more hardships that strengthen our complexes even more, leading to a greater distortion of the present, and so on. And all this recycling of misery continues just because it is difficult to let go of something as simple as a grudge. Demons The animal soul is normally pure, beautiful, and innocent. But the continuously stimulated complexes in it eventually become self-sustaining entities, spiritual par- asites that sap a great deal of energy from the person playing host to them.
These fixed vortexes are like holes or gaps in the seamless fabric of shimmering Light, which is the true nature of the Nephesch. Through these gaps can creep the influ- ences of destructive forces from other realms.
Sometimes, people can become so mentally and emotionally disturbed that you can sense a hurtful presence seeping through them from "beyond. They act as conveyors for dissonant influences that supposedly exist in other realms besides the Ruach, Nephesch, and Neschamah. Demons cannot actually inhabit a person. They do not exist in this world. But a person can fall victim to their influence nonetheless if he unwittingly becomes a conveyor of unbalanced influences from demonic realms.
The physical senses are constantly feeding into and shaping the N ephesch. Our experiences enter, and it responds automatically, as rapidly as quicksilver, by cre- ating a worldview out of them. This worldview, made up of past experiences and conditioned responses, constrains how we see the external environment-not only that, but the internal landscape of the mind as well.
A demonic, fear-driven world- view can easily intimidate us and hold us prisoner. Most people cannot see reality clearly reflected in their internal mirror, but instead see it in the way that the com- plexes embedded there compel them to see it.
But it doesn't have to be that way. Despite the bleak picture I have painted, there is a benefit to this anatomy of the soul. Since the environment is capable of provoking our complexes and it is help- ful if we initially admit this , then it must also follow that a carefully orchestrated environment can smooth out and eliminate those same complexes. We can inten- tionally prod evoke our "demons" to the surface, see them for what they are, and banish them.
Magical ritual is designed to do just that. Performed on a daily basis, it helps the aspirant beat the bushes of his animal soul, ferreting out the autono- mous little critters that have been manipulating him from behind the scenes.
He will eventually, through perseverance, reach a cleared state in which the N ephesch is a smooth continuum of astral light, capable of reflecting wholesome, undistorted images of both the physical and higher worlds. Because the five senses are the chief conditioners of the animal soul, they are the best avenue with which to reshape its substance.
And for the ordinary person, the drama of ritual can mold his inner world such that he can open a clear, reflective space within the polluted soup of the Nephesch. Furthermore, he can ma- nipulate his internal "mirror" to reflect the influence of the spiritual world into the material world. Like using a hand mirror to reflect sunlight into a cave, he can en- ter into any difficult life situation and act as a shining beacon to others.
Or, if he so desires, he can direct spiritual Light toward the situation, producing "miraculous" changes. When the magician has reached this state of clarity, all of the ritual, structure, and tools he mastered to achieve it are no longer necessary. Magic will no longer be what he does, but what he is.
The training wheels of methodology fall away. In the meantime, before he reaches enlightenment, rituals and exercises are still necessary. He has a need to structure his environment so that a cleared space is sympathetically formulated on the distorted surface of the Nephesch.
Magical rit- ual can facilitate this highly desirable state of clarity, especially when it is performed faithfully and regularly. The clarity becomes greater and greater over time as the magician's appearance and demeanor begin to take on the unmistakable qualities of hidden radiance.
The enlightened man, by a Zen analogy, has polished his inner "mirror" to such a degree that it reflects a perfect image of reality. He has calmed the waves on the face of the waters, such that the countenance of the divine sky can convey upon them a clear, undistorted image of the heavens. To feel the reflection of the Divine Self within you and to express Its will in the medium of life is the unspeakable joy that is the goal of the magic of transformation.
Components of Effective Ritual Magic The aspects of ritual that are essential for effective magic are symbol, space, move- ment, voice, and drama. Symbol Effective symbols express the inexpressible. They express the nature of higher worlds in terms of their reflection in our realm of space and time.
For instance, in the astro- logical symbol of the Sun, 0, the dot at the center of the circle is not really the spiri- tual essence of that circle. It is just ink on paper. Imagine the image of the Sun in your heart for five min- utes. What feelings does this produce? What behavior might you exhibit if you were to picture it there all the time? How might your behavior affect your fortunes then?
And the fortunes of others? In this way, symbols and glyphs are tools that reshape the N ephesch to allow for an impression to arise from realms other than that of the physical. Symbols actually can be made to channel power. To do this requires that they be properly visualized in the mirror of the N ephesch and properly contemplated by the Ruach.
Symbols therefore act as attractors and repulsors. Because they can convey cer- tain energies from other worlds, certain complexes floating in the N ephesch have a natural sympathy or antipathy for certain symbols. For instance, the pentagram has a tendency, due to its learned correspondences, to repel materially conditioned com- plexes in the Nephesch.
Working with the pentagram correctly over time therefore reduces the amount of material conditioning in the student's subconscious. This is why the pentagram has a reputation for warding off demons. It is like the scarecrow that keeps a cornfield free of scavengers. The pentagram is foremost an abstract representation of the human figure, one that suggests balance and fierce integrity.
Stand with your legs spread, your arms wide open, and your eyes forward. Feel yourself as a powerful, archetypal human form, come forth upon this earth to fulfill your divinely ordained destiny. Such is the nature of this symbol, and more.
There are countless other correspondences at- tached to it that bear out this same impression, and you would do well to research them and accumulate them in your mind as you begin to perform the Lesser Banish- ing Ritual of the Pentagram on a daily basis. Space Spirit Space represents the medium through which symbols Air Water can interrelate. Symbols, properly placed in relation to A V each other, suggest by their interaction a nonphysical reality.
They can condition the Nephesch to open up to the Neschamah. The impression that the empty space makes within the mind is itself a conveyor when it is properly staked out with symbols. Four pentagrams V h. Also, pentagrams, when formed in particular ways by the magician, can serve to attract certain forces that assist him with the purpose of his ritual. The five points of the pentagram represent spiritual Light reigning majestically over the four ele- ments.
By training yourself to draw the pentagram in various ways, you can attract or repel the influences of the various elements. For example, if the earth point of the pentagram is de-emphasized by drawing the banishing-earth pentagram, your inter- nal mirror would shift to reflect less of the universe's earth-like qualities. You would therefore become less influenced by the physical world, which is represented byel- emental earth.
The same principle applies to other symbols-like the hexagram, by which the magician can modify the influences of the seven astrological planets. Movement Movement is a very suggestive and powerful aspect of ritual. It stimulates the Ruach to open up the Nephesch, like wind on a lake creates ripples that wash debris ashore. It is the means by which the symbols are distributed in a meaningful pattern-es- peciallya circular pattern. A circular dance or circumambulation can actually create a funnel in the soup of the participant's Nephesch and create a resulting opening to the inner mirror of the universe.
Each participant in a circular dance, provided he is tuned in correctly, creates a cleared space in his own N ephesch in which all debris is pushed aside and only the calm and reflective astral light is permitted to pool, like the calm in the eye of a hurricane. This action is sometimes referred to as a "cone of power.
Negative influences are seen as spinning off away from the circle as it fills with astral light. The visualized cone indicates the movement generated in the unseen medium of the magician's N ephesch. It tapers downward through the depths of the animal soul. At the bottom, in the eye of the storm, is a reflection of the divine realm, captured on a placid internal sea.
Voice An even more powerful conveyor of magical power is the voice. The marriage of symbol and movement occur within it. It is a simple matter to experience this. You may be vaguely familiar at least with the energy that fills an amphitheater when the audience chants.
Drama This final aspect of ritual is crucial. Drama is often the missing Orphic compo- nent to the Hermetic approach. Emotion behind the words and gestures is of ab- solute necessity. It is the power source behind the corresponding movement cre- ated in the Nephesch. The physical arrangement, movement, and words of ritual must be backed by feeling. Strong emotion is a foothold on the subtle realms of the astral.
Without it, the ritual exists only in the physical, with little or no de- sired inner correspondence. The concepts presented here make up a Hermetic explanation of the mechanics of ritual and its uses toward achieving illumination.
Ideas like cones of power and subconscious complexes are, by their nature, overly fanciful and technical. The re- ality that these terms attempt to describe, however, is quite different. I have said it before: magic is not what it appears to be. Ultimately, the aspects of ritual are not important but are only to be used as a means to a higher end. They are the tools but not the goal.
There is a crucial still point in a ceremony in which the peak con- sciousness is reached and the breakthrough is made. An unbroken continuum in the astral light is achieved, and the resulting clarity reflects power from the divine realms. The image of the invisible is revealed.
The silent voice is heard. This mo- ment transcends everything that was used and everything that was done in order to achieve it. The magician might not even perceive it, but it may come through anyway by implanting itself in the subconscious, only to bubble to the surface later, causing all manner of changes in his life.
All of the "answers" one needs can arise from this still point. The Hermetic view of ritual is that we are in this world not to abstain from form, but to use it for a higher end. To quote the respected author and magician William Gray, "When we master movements, we can afford to be still. The idea that a documented connection to great magicians of the past imbues any kind of spiritual practice with authenticity is a fallacy.
For example, if! Claims are just that: empty. If a student feels more self-assured with an impressive lineage behind him, so be it, but he need not base his confidence on the circumstances of the past. The value of any curriculum proves itself by the results it brings. It is romantic to envision one proverbial candle lighting another as a teacher passes the flame of Spirit from one generation to the next.
But the truth is that the flame of Spirit is accessible everywhere, any time, from the dirty alleys of the concrete jungle to a pampered sitting room at the Vatican. The successful student of magic connects to this inner power not by accumulating rank or prestige, but through what is hap- pening right now, through the present moment.
But the average person has difficulty recognizing such value as this, because he sees everything through the lens of the past, believing that his fortunes come about solely through cause and effect a process known as karma. He requires his teachers to be reputable. To protect himself from inferior knowledge, he discriminates be- tween "good" teachers and "bad" ones by employing the measuring stick of status.
The social hierarchy is always there, ready to do his thinking for him. But as anyone can guess, the concept of status, though it effectively creates leaders and followers in animal and tribal worlds, is clumsy and largely inapplicable to the higher realms of Spirit. Somewhere along the history of a lineage, the original spark that inspired it can burn out, and the poor student who continues to participate in the derelict faith finds himself trapped in a world of meaningless titles, abusive power, and empty dogma.
Proof of lineage means very little, since a tradition deprived of its original inspiration can continue to feed off of its own momentum. When a particular ceremony, such as the Catholic Mass, has a beguiling reputation, the congregation all too easily plays along with it, seldom questioning whether its present-day observance still fulfills its original purpose. The narrative opens with a rural, small-town meeting in which a traditional ceremony is to be enacted. We learn from the atmosphere of the story that a great mystique has gathered around the practice of an annual drawing of lots.
The dialogue between characters reveals that they have participated in this cer- emony for all of their lives. Only in the end do we learn the ceremony's true nature. Shirley Jackson reveals how the momentum and status of an obsolete ingrained tradition can lull a community into a cultural trance, easily creating a mob capable of unspeakable ritual acts. We need only look at Christianity and Islam to see that Jackson's story is not an exaggeration. The pages of history drip with the blood of ritually tortured and murdered "heretics.
Usually, when the founder of a school dies, his teach- ings die a slow, lingering death soon after, and his inheritors are left beating the dead horse that remains. Most followers are blind to the original power source behind their faith, because they look for it in the past.
They experience the effect of a ritual secondhand, through its nostalgia-its accumulated reputation and stimulating fan- fare. No one has ever trained them to lift the veil of routine and consensus that keeps them cut off from the original fire behind the words and gestures. Now, the magical adept is someone very interesting indeed, because he has out- grown the need to be guided by status. He feeds not off of the momentum of the past, but from the present moment. For him, a ritual does not need to be reputable, because he can discern the value of it-or any work of art, for that matter-almost at a glance.
The spiritual flame is aroused not only by the imposing masterpieces of antiquity, but also by the ordinary things of today. It is not uncommon for the sim- plest and least reputable sources of wisdom to enthrall the adept. Advertisements, nursery rhymes, and comic books are just a few of the unlikely wellsprings in which the more advanced mind may recognize the silent voice of Spirit.
The adept can see the impetus behind these art forms directly instead of secondhand through the "approval machine. The next time someone plays a CD for you and asks if you like the music, no- tice whether or not you have the habit of asking who the artist is before deciding whether you like the song. If you find yourself reluctant to form an opinion until you know who is performing, you may have fallen into the status trap, suppressing your own opinion by letting the past success of the group decide for you what is worthy and what is not.
But if you can listen to the piece and formulate an impres- sion without requiring any facts, you are using the very simple, very powerful faculty of the present-moment experience. You are letting in the power of the now, and you are thinking for yourself. The ability to set aside the tendency to compare the pres- ent to the past, seemingly so simple, is the most important power you possess.
The discriminative faculties of the adept are much more powerful than normal, requiring no moral or intellectual safeguards to keep him on the top of his survival game. He allows the voice of the past to mutter its concerns from the back seat of his vehicle, but he will never allow the past to take the wheeL He has found a bet- ter driver than the voice of his culture, so he can wander far from the highway of the mainstream and still pick his way through the darkness unscathed.
He discov- ers beauty in the most unlikely places. The adept knows that the real power of the "masterpiece" in the museum lies not in its reputation, but in the onlooker. The work of art is a catalyst that helps him lift his spirit into the timeless beauty that exists in his own mind and heart, right now. While the dignified herd of tourists passes before the Mona Lisa muttering acceptable comments, he stands before her in a state of shock, witnessing the goddess within himself.
As you approach a spiritual tradition with the intention of gaining entrance, the temptation to evaluate its status will surely rise up in your mind like a protective shield. It is important to most of us to practice something "reputable" according to the dictates of the values we have been taught.
But the real questions are simple. Does the ritual work, or doesn't it? Are my perceptions changing as I do these exer- cises, or aren't they? Am I alive within my own life, pushing the boundaries, or am I drifting like lumber in the mainstream? I would like to propose that the mainstream traditions of our time, the ones that have become accepted, are horses long dead. They no longer serve to awaken their participants.
Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism in their origins were radi- cal systems of self-transformation. In ancient times, when their spark of inspiration was still vibrant, the cultures in which they appeared regarded them with fear and suspicion. Their first practitioners were ridiculed and persecuted. Anyone who is delving into the true work of the soul, as I have mentioned in the first chapter, is a threat to the great survival machine that sustains the tribe.
Therefore, in order for a system of spiritual development to become "safe" enough for the approval of the mainstream, it must first be emasculated, stripped of its vanguard elements. To become accepted by the bulk of humanity, spirituality must be "cleansed" of magic, thereby turning it into religion. The original ritualistic elements that are designed to liberate the individual from his cultural trance are labeled as "immoral" or "primitive. Another example is the Judaism that has been stripped of its Kabbalah.
Tibetan Buddhism's Chod rite, in which the solitary participant liberates himself from ego by visualizing his own death and disintegration, has been watered down into a monotonous, unrecogniz- able folk dance. When it comes to getting into an "acceptable" tradition like Chris- tianity and attempting to utilize it as a vehicle for awakening, the student finds that the engine has been removed from the car!
The practices that were designed to lib- erate the individual are replaced by ones that actually serve to indoctrinate him. This is not to say that all of Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, and other traditions are spiritual wastelands. Their mythologies still exist, as deep and as powerful as ever, even though the methods for connecting to that power have been removed.
Despite the fact that our priests dress the mystical core of our culture in symbols and parade it before us just out of reach, there are still small, secret groups that al- low the congregation to touch. The illumination of the higher reality will continue to shine through the cracks here and there, even though most people prefer to worship the great survival machine and call it God.
Magic is a disreputable art. People have been burned at the stake for practicing it. It embraces unseen, disturbing realities. It transcends morality. It is in the dis- reputable parts of a spiritual system that one finds the adventure, the risks, and the bounty. Before you dare to take up the exercises in this book, you the potential stu- dent are faced with a leap. Do you adopt this questionable practice, even though convention will label you an "outcast" for doing it?
Such leaps are the means by which real change is created in life, and real disasters too. There looms before you a boundary of uncertainty. One must be free of the old before the new can take root. It is scary to set aside your implanted value system and jump into a new kind of existence just because it strikes a chord with you.
This is an old story, like that of the college student who horrifies his parents by changing his major to philosophy. The spiritual giants of today, when they had just started out on their paths to self-discovery, were seen as "throwing their lives away" or as just plain weird.
But eventually, the gold within worked its way to the surface. After a lengthy adventure through uncertainty, they emerged transformed, suddenly labeled "genius" and "miraculous. Many scholars, act- ing as unwitting protectors of the mainstream, have discredited it and cast it safely into the margins of Western culture.
And there are many more "dangerous" nug- gets of ancient wisdom to be found lying in that shadow fringe. Fortunate is he who stumbles across one that speaks to his unique gifts, helping him to extract the gold from his life.
He can find in it the forbidden path at the crossroads, and treading that rough-hewn pass, he will never be the same again. One is mythical, and the other, factual. I will set aside a few words to discuss each one of these so you can weave the two stories together and formulate a workable image by which to perceive the order and its teachings.
You might well ask why I would give a mythological account in addition to a factual one. Aren't the hard facts uncovered by scholars all that matter? If the oldest accounts of the Golden Dawn are fabricated legends, why should I burden you with fiction?
After all, this is the information age, and the accuracy of facts is sacred. Spiritual traditions of all kinds attach to themselves fanciful myths of magical power. It should come as no surprise that the information age is rapidly discredit- ing Christianity with research. The claims of myth can be picked apart and revealed as "fraud" by any scholar with a little bit of tenacity. And yet, what is the nature of that tenacity with which he would break the spell? It seems that his very desire to penetrate a mystery leads him to destroy his own capacity for experiencing it.
The overly rational scholar reminds me of an analogy: the botanist who has a passion for flowers. He does harm to himself by sheer analysis. He goes out, cuts the blooms from their nourishing roots in the earth, and brings them to his lab, pulling off each petal to examine the pieces under his magnifying glass.
I was superstitious and foolish to call it a thing of beauty. Just because beauty and enlightenment are not quantifiable experiences doesn't make them delusional. Even with respect to a small, esoteric movement like the Golden Dawn, the mythological history of its formation is of great importance, just as the mystery evoked by a flower helps us to appreciate something more than its raw materials. The same can be said of Christianity. Modem skepticism may very well prove one day that Jesus did not die from his crucifixion.!
But what difference does that make, when the myth of the Passion still helps the mystic connect to his God? The Golden Dawn was a society formed in late-nineteenth-century England. Its purpose was the study and practice of the occult, applied in ways to bring about enlightenment. The myth goes something like this: In , a master Mason named A. Woodford purchased a secondhand book in which he found a document written in a fifteenth-century cipher.
Wynn Wescott, a brother Mason, recognized the code as one found in a six- teenth-century text called the Polygraphia, written by the Abbot Johann Trithemius. Wescott immediately wrote to the return address and initiated a cor- respondence that eventually gave him a charter to start a magical lodge of his own in England.
This story of the mysterious cipher manuscripts, Anna Sprengel, and the charter are all that there is to the Golden Dawn's mythical genesis. And it very likely never happened. It is a very modest myth, seeming to make no grandiose claims to supernatural power.
There are no saviors born of virgins or booming voices from the mouths of caves. At least that is how it appears at first glance. But in linking itself to the Rosicrucian tradition of centuries past, Wescott's fledg- ling order plugged itself into an immense mythical power source. The mysterious myth of the Rosicrucians became the mythology of the Golden Dawn.
At the time of the Golden Dawn's formation, this link was thought by many to be historically true, lending much credibility to it as a secret society and giving its recruits confidence in its mystical techniques. The teachings of the Golden Dawn claimed to have lineage, through Rosicrucianism, back to the magicians of ancient Egypt and Babylon. The mythical Fraulein Sprengel, known secretly as Soror Sapiens Dominabitur Astris, was a Rosicrucian-a member of a secret society founded in medieval Ger- many by the fabled magician and alchemist Christian Rosenkreutz.
It is customary for magicians to adopt a magical name by which they are known in the ranks of their secret society. The name is usually created as an anagram of special significance to the student. Fraulein Sprengel's Latin motto, abbreviated as S. You may wish to start formulating one. As Soror S. Its members were great astrologers, physicians, alchemists, and consultants to kings.
They supposedly had a potent influence on the development of the Western world. And their ideas were not uniquely theirs but rather came together in the Rosicru- cian school from the even more ancient traditions of the Egyptian priests, Chal- dean magi, and Jewish Kabbalists. Her exploits, such as the charter to Wescott, were seldom appreciated by her fellow adepts of the order, but so exalted was her position that they never dared to question her actions openly.
In 13 78, Christian Rosenkreutz was born to a penniless Germanic noble family. He then adventured for many years through Europe and the Middle East, questing for hidden knowledge. What he found disappointed him. But he nonethe- less gained insight from his encounters with Arabic physicians and Jewish Kab- balists in the Middle Eastern cities of Damcar and Fez. Both groups received him there as though his arrival had prophetic significance. But the Catholic world was headed into the bloody Spanish In- quisition, and his Kabbalistic discoveries were ridiculed by the superstitious men- tality of Western Europe.
Rosenkreutz knew that he must retreat from the world and conduct his researches in secret or else suffer persecution. A direct attack on the ignorance of the time was out of the question. He decided therefore to create a secret society that would indirectly bring about a behind-the-scenes reformation of the arts and sciences.
After this time of introspection, experimentation, and transformation, he founded, with the aid of three of his monastic brethren, a hidden college called the Domus Sanctus Spiritus. The number of brethren in the group soon increased to eight, and they worked speedily on preparing the documents and instructions of the order.
Once their college was firmly established, Rosenkreutz's seven followers left it to travel Europe, spreading the teachings across the continent, planting the seeds of their tradition quietly wherever they went. They didn't have to teach their "heretical" philosophy openly.
It was by their simple presence and through their example that they carried the light of Rosicrucian ide- als into the heart of the European culture. Supposedly, this led to a flowering of the philosophy called Humanism in the s, which subsequently became the catalyst for the explosion of new thought that occurred in the Renaissance.
The Rosicrucians, or members of the Order of the Rosy Cross, have always pre- sented themselves as vast, invisible, and influential, pushing the alarm buttons of all kinds of conspiracy theorists. It may well have been that they existed, but most likely they were not as organized as the theorists would like to believe. Echoes of a pseudo-Christian Hermeticism exist throughout medieval history, a magical tradi- tion based on classical values, Egyptian magic, alchemy, astrology, and the myth of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
All of this was tied together via the cor- respondence system of Kabbalah. Six bylaws governed the conduct of the Rosicrucian brethren in their travels. These are the rules of the Rosicrucian manifesto: 1.
None of the members of the Order of the Rosy Cross should profess any art except that of physician. Note that healing the sick was not the aim of the order, but its cover. The fruits of alchemy were shared openly and without compensation, but the methodology of its magic was kept secret. Each member should wear the ordinary dress of his country of residence.
No fancy, elitist trappings allowed. All members should meet once per year on Corpus Christi day. Each member should seek a suitable pupil to succeed him. The mark and seal of each member should be c. The Society should remain secret for one hundred years. New members were accepted from all professions. II Christian Rosenkreutz was, among other things, an alchemist.
By the sciences that he and his brethren practiced, he was able to greatly extend his allotted years on earth. At a time when the average life span was forty years, he lived to the age of And as he neared that age, he began to prepare for his own death. Before his time ended, the Rosicrucians added another rule to their manifesto, making the total number of bylaws seven: Each member was to be buried in a secret, un- marked location.
In fact, years after Rosenkreutz's death, a fascinating discovery was made, or so the story goes. One of the Rosicrucian brethren who possessed considerable architectural skill was supervising an expansion to the Domus Sanctus Spiritus.
In the process, he un- covered a memorial plaque in a wall, encased within the plaster, presumably of the founding brethren of the order. He respectfully had it removed so that he might see it placed on a more prominent monument in the cemetery. He had no reason to suspect that it covered the location of the founder's tomb, since the seventh rule of the manifesto forbade making known the place of one's burial.
But as the workmen were removing the plaque from the brittle plaster, they discovered a secret door in the masonry. A mysterious white light shone from the chamber within. Before them was a vault of seven sides. In the center of the room rested a circular altar bear- ing brass plates on its surface that were inscribed with angelic names and images.
But the most mysterious discovery was yet to come. When the brethren moved aside the altar, they discovered a brass plate in the fioor, under which lay a body. There, in death, was Christian Rosenkreutz, in his secret crypt, in a nearly perfect state of preservation.
He was dressed in the ceremonial white robes and adornments of the Rosicrucian Order, clasping a mysterious scroll that later came to be known as the most valued document in the order Book I. Early medieval publications refer to a Father e. There is no record of the learned men of Spain ever receiving a guest, such as Rosenkreutz, purporting to have knowledge of a secret doctrine that reformed the arts, sciences, and religion of Western Europe.
There is likewise no record of a place such as the Domus Sanctus Spiritus, a place where modest and secretive phy- sicians effected miracle cures. IS Regarding a factual account of the Rosicrucian "secret society," there is little evi- dence to show that it ever existed in any official capacity. Most scholars who look for clues look in the wrong places. They see the order as being mobilized for political purposes in secret castles connected with underground tunnels, and so on.
Yet any sincere student of medieval occultism would acknowledge that an intense spirit of esoteric, Kabbalistic Christianity did lurk in the shadows of medieval Europe. This spirit emerged explosively in the Renaissance with the advent of the printing press and the resurrection of pagan philosophies.
One has only to read Dante's Divine Comedy and the works of Shakespeare to discern the blatantly Rosicrucian cosmol- ogy and terminology. It thrives still. The tendency to see it as a secret society is the crude human way of trying to define it in terms of social hierarchy. It is too difficult for the factual mind of the researcher to admit that enlightenment can be carried in the heart of a culture, hidden in plain sight in the works of art and literature without ever shouting out its purpose directly for all to hear.
Artists and mystics speak a language to which the average person is deaf. It is held by some that the members of the Rosicrucian secret society are simply all legitimate initiates of the Western Esoteric Tradition. Central to this tradition is the medieval symbol of the Rose Cross, the Calvary Cross of Christ, from the center of which blooms the rose.
The rose is the Western expression of the same reality that the pagan priests of ancient Egypt, India, and the Far East conveyed with the lotus blossom. It is the consciousness of the human who has awakened to his true identity. He has shaken off the stupor of the castaway on the beach.
The Light of the Divine that works its way up from the depths of obscurity finds its outlet through the heart of the adept, where it silently blooms, granting the secret intimacy of the divine presence. When the student graduates into adeptship, he finds himself identified with Christ on the cross, a spirit that has become tangled in matter.
The task that awaits such an awakened individual is to untangle the self from matter-or to liberate the crucified rose from its cross. It is furthermore held that the highest initiates of the Rosicrucian tradition are just such liberated flowers, spirits capable of coming and going through their phys- ical bodies, communing in unison on the subtle planes of existence with the divine presence, acting as liaisons and cocreators with the will of God Himself.
Such men and women are said to have extraordinary powers, not the least of which are the ability to live for hundreds of years, appear in two places at once, and transmute base metals into gold. And this is the supposed tradition to which the Golden Dawn connected itself via its modest story of the cipher manuscript, Anna Sprengel, and the charter to form a temple in England.
This is the landscape that lies before you as you hold this book, the true form of which may bloom for you if you embark on the process of transformation. Despite the appeal of the myth, it has become quite clear through research that Wescott fabricated the story about the German Rosicrucian adept who sent him the charter. Why would Wescott do such a thing? Let's try to take a look at it from his view, if we can. Wescott was a Freema- son with heavy spiritual and occult leanings who was dissatisfied with what Free- masonry had to offer in stodgy Victorian England.
In his studies, he was highly aware of the Rosicrucian spirit that pervaded his subjects of interest, yet the lineage of that spirit remained unverifiable to him and his contemporaries-this at a time when scientific analysis and fact-finding were stomping like heartless gods across the West in the form of the industrial revolution.
The role models of the Victorian era were men of facts, lineage, and historical accuracy. The myths of religion were only regarded as powerful if they could be factually substantiated as having actually happened on such and such dates and times. The story of Jesus, for instance, only had credibility if one could refer to the facts and see that, yes, a man named Jesus of Nazareth was crucified on Golgotha in the year AD 33 and that, yes, the tomb ofJesus was found empty. If evidence had been found thatJesus did not die at his crucifixion evidence that does exist, by the way19 , the faith of many Christians of that time period would have been deeply compromised.
Such a mindset, which plants its foundation on fact, paradoxically cuts itself off from its roots in the realm of myth. It isolates the individual from the power of fic- tion, from his own imagination. The person who founds his confidence on his past denies the power of the present moment. Few would doubt that great truths can be transmitted through a good drama.
But who would dare to leap at forming a spiri- tual tradition based on fiction? People don't want their prestige to be based on fairy tales. They want status, lineage, and a heraldry of great teachers that proceeds some- how unbroken from the dawn of time-a pecking order with verifiable credentials.
It is my belief that Wescott was faced with the task of bringing the spirit of Rosi- crucianism into a school of people who were of this difficult mindset-a seemingly impossible task. His own scholarship had failed to uncover a factual Rosicrucian society in the spiritual undercurrent of the West. His contemporaries were mired in the thinking of the time, and they would certainly not value pure insight without evidence. For the average man, it is not enough to trust in inspiration.
He must have some external sort of prop by which to apprehend that power source, even though the power comes not from the object, but from within himself. It may be that at some point he would have revealed to them the falseness of the order's claims, perhaps once they had progressed to the Inner Order.
There comes a time when the student of magic outgrows his pretensions and doesn't need justifications for liberating himself anymore. The legend of the Rosicrucians provided the Outer Order students of the Golden Dawn the air of legitimacy that they required to pacify the competitive, skeptical nature of their era and to justify their spiritual development.
Pause for a moment to reflect on your knowledge of the world's great spiritual traditions. Is it possible that they all have fabricated their credibility in similar ways? Does it make them less effective if they have? Was Jesus really born of a vir- gin? Does it matter? There is much about spiritual practice that is pretentiously romanticized and has little to do with the actual happenings within the mindlbody of the practitio- ner.
The adrenaline-stirring imagery, the thought-provoking sigils, and the overly fanciful descriptions of "layers of the aura" on one level satiate the mind, which is hungry for facts, but the real work of the soul, unimaginably simple, proceeds on- ward beneath the surface.
So, to complete the historical account of the Golden Dawn, I now switch from the mythology to history: Wescott was a busy man. He couldn't compile the teachings of the order single- handedly. He called upon the genius of his friend Samuel MacGregor Mathers whom he had been supporting financially for several years to help with the proj- ect. Mathers took the material and, over the years that followed, developed the initiation ceremonies and curriculum of a magical fraternity, the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.
Wescott and Mathers called on another Masonic friend of theirs, Dr. Robert Woodman, to be a third cochief, making a total of three in a trinity of founders. The order was discreet about membership and remained relatively hidden from the public in its early years, from through Most members found their way to the society via word of mouth.
The chief influences within its ranks ap- peared to be Mathers and his wife, Moina, who were perhaps the most learned and developed of the adepts. The Outer Order was for beginners, con- sisting of an introductory grade and four elemental grades.
The elemental grades corresponded to earth, air, water, and fire. By association with the elements, they also correspond to the Four Worlds or levels of existence of Kabbalah. Addition- ally, there was a sixth or "Portal" grade, which led to adeptship. It consisted of the adepts. It had no curriculum or initiation ceremonies until , when the first Adeptus Minor ritual was performed.
The Third Order supposedly consisted of spiritual beings called the "Secret Chiefs," with whom only Mathers had psychic communication. There is much spec- ulation about these Secret Chiefs today, and many consider them to be actual men and women living on Earth.
Some say that the aspiring adept cannot enter their Third Order and still be incarnate on Earth. The reality of the occult IS not as it appears. The curriculum of the order consisted mostly of studying lecture documents, sit- ting for examinations, and undergoing the ritual initiations of the Neophyte grade, the four elemental grades, and the Portal and Adeptus Minor grades.
Each of the grade initiations that Mathers developed from the cipher manuscripts appeared to have a powerful effect on the candidates. Properly performed, the ceremonies fa- cilitated an alchemical process within each of them. The psyche of the initiate was symbolically dismembered, consolidated, and recombined. The first one jolted to life the process of self-analysis that characterizes the elemental grades. In successive elemental-grade initiations, each of the four elements was then ritually and symbolically extracted and consolidated from the others within the candidate's subtle body.
Then, finally, the Adeptus Minor initiation focused on reintegrating and balancing the then-organized components of the psyche. The idea was that, simply speaking, the physical, mental, emotional, and instinctive aspects of one's being were separated, consolidated, and rebuilt, creating a new human being that was more ef- ficient than before.
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