T∴G∴D∴ | Ordo et Templum Aurorae Aureae Novae
Founded In Service to the A∴A∴
"Now initiation is, by etymology, the journeying inwards; it is the Voyage of Discovery (oh Wonder-World!) of one's own Soul." –Aleister Crowley
Initiation is an Inner Journey that leads to Illumination. It is to become Enlightened to our True Self by way of our True Will. Of this there are various degrees or steps of knowledge and experience, but there are two that are most critical. The first is the attainment of the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel. The second is to Cross the Abyss and become a Master of the Temple. The latter is experienced after the annihilation of the ego upon crossing of the Abyss which lies between Manhood and Godhead; or, more properly, it is the annihilation of the Soul's identification with the illusion of the ego. "The Aspirant must well understand that it is no paradox to say that the Annihilation of the Ego in the Abyss is the condition of emancipating the True Self, and exalting it to unimaginable heights." (Aleister Crowley) Ultimately, Enlightenment is when there is no ego, or personal self, only the True Self, which is universal and impersonal in nature. It is when the ego, or personality, is no longer the point of reference, but rather it becomes a tool to realize the True Self and to do its True Will. In a very practical sense, it is when you stop interpreting the Universe in terms of yourself, and rather interpret your life in terms of the Universe. It is when you take complete responsibility for your Soul and follow your own Path from within.
To follow your own Path from within requires more courage than climbing a colossal mountain, or parachuting from a plane high in the sky, or facing and fighting a ferocious lion. To follow your own Path means that you have to face, battle and conquer the greatest demon of all, and that demon is your self, your ego, your illusive I, your false identity, the shadow of your Soul. To follow your own Path means that you have to think for yourself, and the only way you can think for yourself is if you transcend yourself and live from your Soul, not from your mind. The greatest confusion is between the mind and the Soul, but when the Soul is realized and the mind is transcended, then Understanding blossoms. Feeling, rather than thinking, is more true to the Soul. But feelings, just like thoughts, are not who you really are. The Soul is pure, an incorruptible potential within you, beyond feeling and thinking, and it is the raw material and experience behind everything that is happening to you. The Soul is your Inner Self, or your True Self, the God of your life. There is no other God for you than your own Soul. Your Soul is your only God on Earth, and it is One, Eternal and Indivisible. The highest Magick Oath, the Oath that Crowns it All in the Order, is One: To recognize every phenomenon as God, that is, as my Soul. Such is the Oath of the Highest Grade in the Order pertaining to the Sephirah called Kether on the Qabalistic Tree of Life, as well as to the Chakra of Yoga called Sahasrara. It is the most simple Oath of All, and also the most difficult. It can take innumerable life times just to commence the work, let alone to execute it. Taking the Oath is not just a verbal act of the Will; it is an expression and experience of the Highest Order. It is the Inmost Work of the Spirit of All (PAN).
To believe that God is separate from you is an illusion, and illusions exist to reveal the truth, not to deceive or blind you. God is within you, and is ultimately who you really are. Not you, the illusive ego, the conscious I, but YOU, as an eternal Soul. Yes, in reality, YOU are God, but the fact is you have been hiding in plain sight from Yourself, playing hide and seek with something that cannot be hidden except through your own ignorance. However, the God we are referring to is not some old grumpy deity sitting on a celestial throne in Heaven judging and condemning his own creation, or other such childish nonsense. Rather the God to which we are referring is the divine center, essence and energy of your very existence. It is your True Self, your Silent Self, symbolized in the Order by Hoor-Pa-Kraat, the Egyptian God of Silence. This God lives in your Heart of Hearts, in the Sanctuary of your Soul. It is the great Mystery of your Life. To know this God, you must think outside of the box; fortunately you can do this by taking a quantum leap outside of the box, and then by throwing away the box itself (your conditioned beliefs). Ultimately, you are God; and if you will just get honest with yourself, and put aside the illusion of separateness, you will realize and accept that there is no other God that you must answer to; and your body, with its functioning brain and mind, is an extension of your God, that is your Soul. Nothing is more important in life than for us to know our own immortal Soul and to follow its chosen Path from within. Thus it is called The Great Work and The Path of the Wise.
The Soul is the Great Mystery underlying and tying together all spiritual, religious and psychological systems of illumination. The first lesson and requirement for true spiritual living is to recognize the fact that you are a Spiritual Soul, an Eternal Self who has incarnated on Earth to realize itself. Without the body and mind, you cannot know or experience your Soul, nor can you know the Path it has mapped out for itself. The body and mind are necessary instruments to this Great Work. When you go to a church or temple in the external world to worship God, you go with your body and mind, and that is where your true religious or spiritual feelings come from, not from any symbolic crosses, wafers, statues, priests, or sermons. These things can help to trigger certain feelings from within you, but that is the extent of their power. You are the only one who gives power to any of these things. In fact, it all comes from within you. You do not need to go to a church, temple, or any other external place of worship to experience and know God. To believe otherwise is simply ignorant. Your body with its nervous system is where God lives, moves, and has its Being, and you can begin to experience and know God anywhere, in any place, and at any time, once you understand that your very Soul is God within you. That is, your Supernal Soul represented by the Supernal Triad on the Qabalistic Tree of Life. Such is the Sanctum Sanctorum, the Holy of Holies, wherein is the Arcanum Arcanorum, the Secret of Secrets, which we discover through the Great Work of Initiation, the Inner Journey that leads to Understanding, Wisdom and Illumination. The Supernal Triad contains the three highest Sephiroth on the Qabalistic Tree of Life, called Kether, Chokmah and Binah. Kether symbolizes the Yechidah (True Self), Chokmah symbolizes the Chiah (True Will), and Binah symbolizes the Neschamah (True Soul). Yechidah, Chiah and Neschamah are really One, the Soul of All.