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Initiation: What It Is and Is Not--Part I

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  • juan marin alcaraz
      Interpreti Veneziani-4.mov   Initiation: What It Is and Is Not--Part I      It is no rare occurrence to receive questions relating to Initiation, and we
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 6, 2012
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      Initiation: What It Is and Is Not--Part I
         It is no rare occurrence to receive questions relating to Initiation, and we are also
       frequently asked to state whether this order or that society is genuine, and whether the
       initiations they offer to all comers who have the price are bona fide. For that reason
      it seems necessary to write a treatise on the subject so that students of the
       Rosicrucian Fellowship may have an official statement for reference and guidance in the future.
         In the first place let it be clearly understood that we consider it reprehensible
       to express condemnation of any society or order, no matter what its practices. It
      may be perfectly sincere and honest according to its light. We do not believe that
      we rise in the opinion of discriminating men and women by speaking in disparaging
       terms of others; neither are we laboring under the delusion that we have all the
      truth and the other societies are plunged in Egyptian darkness. We reiterate what
       we have often said before, that all religions have been given to mankind by the
      Recording Angels, who know the spiritual requirements of each class, nation,
      and race, and have the intelligence to give each a form of worship perfectly suited to
       its particular need; that thus Hinduism is suited to the Hindu, Mohammedanism
      to the Arab, and the Christian religion to those born in the Western Hemisphere.
         The Mystery Schools of each religion furnish to the more advanced members
      of the race or nation embracing it a higher teaching, which if lived, advances them into
      a higher sphere of spirituality than their brethren. But as the religion of the
       backward races is of a lower order than the religion of the pioneers, the Christian
       nations, so also the Mystery Teaching of the East is more elementary than that
       of the West, and the Hindu or Chinese Initiate is on a correspondingly lower
       rung of the ladder of attainment than the Western Mystic. Please ponder this
       well so that you may not fall a victim to misguided people who try to persuade
       others that the Christian religion is crude compared with oriental cults. Ever westward
       in the wake of the shining sun, the light of the world, has gone the star of empire, and
       is it not reasonable to suppose that the spiritual light has kept pace with civilization,
      or even preceded it as thought precedes action? We hold that such is the case, that
      the Christian religion is the loftiest yet given to man, and that to repudiate the
      Christian religion, esoteric or exoteric, for any of the older systems is analogous
       to preferring the older textbooks of science to the newer ones which embrace discoveries to date.
         Neither are the practices of Eastern aspirants to the higher life to be imitated
       by Westerners; we refer particularly to the breathing exercises. They are both
      beneficial and necessary to the unfoldment of the Hindu, but it is otherwise with
      the Western aspirant. To him it is dangerous to practice breathing exercises
       for soul unfoldment; they will even prove subversive of soul growth, and they
       are, moreover, absolutely unnecessary. The reason is this:
         During involution the threefold spirit has become gradually incrusted in a
       threefold body. In the Atlantean Epoch man was at the nadir of materiality. We
       are just now rounding the lowest point on the arc of involution, and starting
      upward on the arc of evolution. At this point, then, all mankind is immured in
       this earthly prison house to such a degree that spiritual vibrations are almost
       killed. This is, of course, particularly true of the backward races and the lower
      classes in the Western world. The atoms in such backward race bodies are
       vibrating at an exceedingly low rate, and when in the course of time one of these
       people develops to a point where it is possible to further him upon the path
      of attainment, it is necessary to raise this vibratory pitch of the atom so that
      the vital body, which is the medium of occult growth, may to a certain extent
       be liberated from the deadening forces of the physical atom. This result is attained
       by means of breathing exercises, which in time accelerate the vibration of the
      atom, and allow the spiritual growth necessary to the individual to take place.
         These exercises may also be used by a great number of people in the Western
       world, particularly those who are not at all concerned about their spiritual
      advancement. But even among those who desire soul growth there are many who
       are not yet at the point where the atoms of their bodies have evolved to such a
       pitch of vibration that acceleration beyond the usual measure would injure them.
       Here the breathing exercises would do no harm; but if given to a person who is
       really at the point where he can enter the path of advancement ordinarily mapped
       out for the Hindu's precocious brothers and sisters in the West, in other words,
       when he is nearly ready for Initiation and when he would be benefited by
      spiritual exercises, then the case is far otherwise.
         During the eons which we have spent in evolution since the time when we were
       in Hindu bodies, our atoms have accelerated their vibratory pitch enormously,
       and as said in the case of one who is really nearly ready for Initiation, the
      pitch of vibration is higher than that of the average man or woman. Therefore he
       does not need breathing exercises to accelerate this pitch, but certain spiritual
      exercises suited to him individually which will advance him on the proper path.
       If such a person at this critical period meets some one who ignorantly or
      unscrupulously gives him breathing exercises, and if he follows the instructions
       accurately in the hope of getting quick results, he will get them quickly but
      in a manner he has not looked for, since the vibratory rate of the atoms in his
       body will in a very short time become accelerated to such a pitch that it will
       seem to him as if he were walking on air; then also an improper cleavage
      of the vital body may take place, and either consumption or insanity follows.
      Now please put this down where it will burn itself into your consciousness in
       letters of fire: Initiation is a spiritual process, and spiritual progress cannot
      be accomplished by physical means, but only by spiritual exercises.
         There are many orders in the West which profess to initiate anyone who has
       the price. Some of these orders have names closely resembling our own, and we
       are constantly asked by students whether they are affiliated with us. In order to
      settle this once and for all, please note that the Rosicrucian Fellowship has constantly
       taught that no spiritual gift may ever be traded for money. If you bear this in mind,
       you may know we have no connection with any order which demands money for the
       transference of spiritual power. He who has something to give of a truly spiritual
       nature will not barter it for money. I received a particular injunction to this
      effect from the Elder Brothers in the Rosicrucian Temple, when they told me to
      go to the English speaking world as their messenger, a claim I do not expect you to
      believe save as you see it justified by fruits.
         Now, however, about Initiation: What is it? Is it ceremony as claimed by these
       other orders? If so, any order can certainly invent ceremonies of a more or less
      elaborate kind. They may by flowing robes and clashing swords appeal to the
       emotions; they may appeal to the sense of wonder and awe by rattling chains and
      by deep sounding gongs, and thus produce in their members an "occult feeling."
      Many revel in the adventures and experiences of the hero in "The Brother of the
      Third Degree," thinking that this is surely Initiation, but I tell you that it is
      very far from being the case. No ceremony can ever give to any one that inward
      experience which constitutes Initiation, no matter how much is charged or how
      fearful the oaths, how awful or beautiful the ceremony, or how gorgeous the robes,
      any more than passing through a ceremony can convert a sinner and make him a
      saint, for conversion is to the exoteric religionist exactly what Initiation is in
      the higher mysticism. Please consider this point thoroughly, and
      you will have the key to the problem.
         Do you think that any one could go to a person of depraved character and agree to
       convert him for a certain sum and carry out his part of the agreement? Surely you
       know that no amount of money could bring about that change in a man's character. Ask
       a true convert where he got his religion and how he got it. One may tell you that
      he received it upon the road as he was walking along; another says that the light and
      the change came to him in the solitude of his room; another that the light struck him
       as it struck Paul upon the road to Damascus, and forced him to change. Every one
      has a different experience, and the outward manifestation of that inward experience
      is that it changes the man's whole life from the very least to the very greatest aspect.
         So it is with Initiation; it is an inward experience, entirely separate and apart
      from any ceremonial whatever, and therefore it is an absolute impossibility that any
      one could sell it to any one else. Initiation changes a man's whole life. It gives
      him a confidence that he never possessed before. It clothes him with a mantle of
      authority that never can be taken from him. No matter what the circumstances in
      life, it sheds a light upon his whole being that is simply wonderful. Nor can any
       ceremony effect such a change. We therefore hold that anyone who offers initiation
      into an occult order by ceremonials to everyone who has the price, brands himself
      as an imposter. For the true teacher, if he were approached by an aspirant with
      an offer of money for spiritual attainment, would answer indignantly in the words
       used by Peter to Simon the sorcerer, who offered him money for spiritual
      powers: "Thy silver perish with thee".


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