Regardless of position grade or experience. All Golden Dawn practitioners are Neophytes. From the traditional sense this is a probationary grade. The grades of Zelator to Philosophus are elemental grades relating to Earth, Air, Water, Fire and Spirit.
These elemental grades help cleanse and rebalance the four elements as they exist within us. The symbolism involved are of the Egyptian God Osiris who was killed, dismembered, reassembled, and resurrected into spiritual form.
Neophyte and Portal grades are both probationary grades and don't reflect a position on the Tree of Life. The rest of the grades are assigned a Sephiroth and begin at the bottom or number 10 also known as Malkuth aka Kingdom of Earth.
The Neophyte requires a full initiating team. Its the reason why 'Techniques of High Magic - by Skinner' are popular. Place a white triangle and red cross on top of a bible and swear an oath. But no. You are the team. You have to build the symbols in your mind to help guide you through this initiation process
"I (legal name) in the presence of the Lord of the Universe, Creator of all, who works in silence and whom naught but silence can express....I hereby solemnly promise ...to dedicate my life to light of of Great work and Pledge to use this knowledge in light divine for the betterment of..."
Variations of the example oaths for Neophyte are listed in many books. The importance of the pledge is not to be taken lightly.
Here is the basic structure of the temple space.
I redrew this using the Linux Dia vector program. The only thing missing are the symbols for the officers. You can find those in the 7th edition of or Cicero's self-initiation. However I think we need to start modernizing this. Below are some 3d examples.
In my setup I felt each direction should have some sort of table to hold either candles, incense or water, including tablets and other miscellaneous things. I suppose that should be a given. But in my literal and linear thinking mind I found the original drawings very frustrating indeed. Also note I'm missing an officer on the Dais.
Please ignore the yin-yang symbols the are suppose to be the Dais officers represented by a cross with a circle. But I wasn't prepared to draw that and resize it.
So let's talk about the officers.
On the Dais You have five officers of the outer order represented by a circle cross of white light. They are as follows:
- Praemonstrator or Praemonstratrix: Isis
- Imperator or Imperatriz: Nebetho
- Cancellarius or Cancellaria: Thoth
Thoth is also a synthesis of Adept Triad or Three Chiefs so it can be a bit complicated. Frustrating to say the least when you are reading for the first time.
- Hierophant or Hierophantissa: Osiris
- past Hierophant or Pas Hierophantissa: Hoo Our
The other officers are:
- Heiress or Hiereia: Hoor -> Symbolized with red sword
- Hegemon or Hegemone: Thme
- Dadouchos or Dadouche: Neith
- Stolistes: Auromoouth
- Keryx or Kerykissa: Anup em Yebet
All of these officers have Egyptian forms with either a regular head or animal head such as a dog or bird etc... You can just as easily print them out or redraw them and begin meditation on the symbols and colors that each one represents. But in the temple for simplicity the 5 are represented by the circled cross.
Each officer while egyptian in form. During ritual they represent robed figures with certain colors and sashes as well as symbols. I would place the symbols on pedestals throughout the temple.
So these symbols are placed throughout the temple at key points. And some of them move to form a hexagram. Or two triangles. Please refer to the 7th edition for the positions.
This portion takes days if not hours. The quick version would be to print out as much stuff as you can and place them into the proper locations. You can find all you need in the 7th edition and Cicero's Self-Initiation. But if you explore you can find more stuff online.
The reality of things is you don't need any of this stuff. All of this can be done with the mind itself. Pure imagination. But you should take the baby steps before attempting such a feat. Tools just make everything easier.
For my temple I printed and laminated everything for reuse. I also hand drawn some of the symbols and pictures.
You can refer to "Secrets of the Golden Dawn Temple - Creating Magical Tools". You can also consecrate with fire and water the symbols and the temple room. "The Magic of the Golden Dawn" has examples.
Creating the temple and tools has a unique magic imbued in its creation. Very powerful indeed.
Various schools talk about this. Visualizing points, lines, circles, triangles, and balls. Changing colors and moving them are only the beginning. You need full control over this process because the next step would be Godform work where visualization becomes critical.
When ritual begins for Neophyte grade you will invoke Thme. More than that you need to spend the time establishing and making contact with Thme (Tat-may). The Greek form of this deity is Themis, and the Egyptian would be Meet or Maat. This is your guide throughout all of the elemental grades.
Perhaps it was a weakness in my visualization techniques. I don't really know. I needed more symbols. I scoured the internet for endless pictures of Theme and Maat. I even purchased a medallion. I spent time in dreams and in the astral to firmly establish contact. So perhaps Thme acts as a portion of the candidates own Higher Self. Okay a lot of stuff takes place in the mind. But I didn't find that elegant. Creating the symbolism and adding the correspondences to the symbolism, designing a character sheet like in Dungeons and Dragons and creating attributes really helps establish contact and create consistency.
Dialog is super important and you will know when you have the right Godform. Deceit and tricks reveals everything. You are seeking the light and the light will find you. This is the higher plane you are seeking to work with.
Intonation makes the world of difference. Well to be more specific words themselves have an inherent magic in itself that carries with it an infinite emotions. Coupled with a hum or chant or a drawn out vowels enunciated with the right pitch. When you add a stream of glowing white light from visualization into the words vibrated
Matt and Godform assumption needs a dedicated chapter. I felt while Self-Initiation into Golden Dawn while beautifully written was lacking for me. For others I'm sure its sufficient enough. "The Godforms of the Golden Dawn Tradition by Pat Zalewski" definitely helps bridge that gap. However I struggled with that book as well. Ritual of each grade is extremely complex. A lot of stuff is going on and Godform assumption is usually taught to the student in later grades.
Connecting to Maat
The Neophyte Ceremony
Time will be needed for altar setup, and some things will need to be new. A rose, bread, and perhaps a nice glass of wine. You will also need a blindfold or shroud, and black cord. All symbols of entering the light from the dark and of being bound. You should also meditate in solitude before the ritual and you need to fast 12 hours before starting the ritual.
Eventually you will enter the temple and walk clockwise hopefully with a sword to perform a banishing ritual. Knock and perform the "Hekas, Hekas...".
Then you will turn and connect with Thme. Personally this is areally a big deal and not to be taken lightly. Thme is your guide and will take you by the hand and guide you through this process. You will meet the other officers in there respective godforms and go through a purification process and swear an oath that binds you to the magical current of a golden dawn tradition. Finally you will close the ceremony and begin reading the lecture.
This sets the stage for any ritual that might occur next. It really does put everything into perspective. The experience alone will cause you to pause. Because if this is your thing will want considerable time to study and prepare for the next grade. You now have just a small taste of the experience.
Engaged in the current is like a permission based passport experience and you might find yourself glowing like a beacon attracting all kinds of strange things.
I spent a year researching the Zealator grade. More importantly I wanted to establish a better relationship with Maat and really communnicate with earth elementals.
Before visiting the Zelator grade let's revisit.
Connecting to Maat
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