I recently was reminded of something ICL had written and posted to all the members back in 2001. So, I asked him if he would mind digging it up for me, and also if he would mind if I posted it on my blog here. He said he didn't mind. Here is the Hierophant Confession being referred to, followed by ICL's September 2001 post.
The Confession of the Hierophant
Fratres et Sorores of the Order, seeing that the whole intention of the Lower Mysteries, or of external initiation, is by the intervention of the Symbol, Ceremonial, and Sacrament, so to lead the Soul that it may be withdrawn from the attraction of matter and delivered from the absorption therein, whereby it walks in somnambulism, knowing not whence it cometh nor whither it goeth; and seeing also, that thus withdrawn, the Soul by true direction must be brought to study of Divine Things, that it may offer the only clean Oblation and acceptable sacrifice, which is Love expressed towards God, Man and the Universe. Now, therefore, I confess and testify thereto, from my Throne in this Temple, and I promise, so far as in me lies, to lead you by the Rites of this Order, faithfully conserved, and exhibited with becoming reverence, that through such love and such sacrifice, you may be prepared in due time for the greater Mysteries, the Supreme and inward Initiation.
- spoken by the incoming Hierophant, at every Golden Dawn Equinox Ceremony
Avete Fratres et Sorores,
Thank you all, for allowing me to serve you in this role for the past six months. It is the pinnacle of the Outer Order priesthood and it is my wish that every seeker of the Light receives the opportunity to experience the blessings and current of this role. As, I lay down my Scepter on this Autumnal Equinox, I would like to expound on one last thing. In the Confession of the Hierophant, recited on every Equinox celebration, the difference between the Lesser and the Greater Mysteries is revealed and explained. In essence the Lesser Mysteries are shown to be the initiatory system which we all benefit from in this Order, while the Greater Mysteries are the true inner changes that mark real spiritual and occult advancement in the True Order of God, the Lord of the Universe.
This has been a subject of deep contemplation for me for many years. And, I would like to share with you what the current in the past six months has given to me on this subject. For, the vast majority of us are all Neophytes of the Greater Mysteries in this Order, regardless of our grade in the Lesser Mysteries of our external initiatory system. Although, currents truly descend upon us, and truly give us new growth, spiritual and occult power, and responsibilities in each grade of the Lesser Mysteries, the Lesser Mysteries are more intended to empower us to accomplish the Great Work and the Work of our Order. While the Greater Mysteries are the true changes in our spiritual growth and evolution.
The Outer and Uninitiated world is composed of those who do not walk the Path of Aspiration. Who are filled with what the Ancient Churches called "acedia". Acedia is defined as "spiritual sloth, which is characterized by laziness and indifference in matters of the Spirit." Many of us remain in the uninitiated state of the Greater Mysteries until well into the middle or higher grades of the Lesser Mysteries! Such is the state of those who have not placed their Higher Genius and their spiritual growth as their highest priority in Life. Once, we come to the inner revelation that all else in life is vanity except the pursuit of the Highest Light, we truly become Neophytes of the Greater Mysteries. Most of us have come to that conclusion, and thus are Neophytes within.
The grade of Zelator in the Greater Mysteries marks a very different stage. A stage of actual Zeal. Not apparent zeal. All of us who see the work of the Order and the Great Work as paramount and sacrifice much to accomplish them have apparent Zeal. Actual Zeal is when we have been cleansed of all resistance within us. When no longer do we tire in spiritual labor. When no longer we feel the Dark Night of doubt, resistance, material needs, and pleasures. Actual Zeal does not come from our willpower, but from a process of Alchemy that configures us in the image of an Angelic Force that has no pleasure in anything but God and the labors to which He appoints us.
Imagine that! Imagine never feeling emotional fatigue, never feeling inner resistance, never feeling doubt about God, our Higher Genius, nor our Order, never feeling any emotion but bliss in spiritual things. This is the True Zealator of the Greater Mysteries. The stage we all seek next. The stage which truly brings all things within our reach. This is not a symptom of hermitage, but of being in the World and not contaminated by it. It is not that we do not care for the matters of the world. Quite the opposite! By ceasing to make the matters of the world our treasure and master, we truly become empowered to save it from its own depths and to culture it to its highest potential.
From there, the other grades of the Outer Order are but parts of the grade of Zelator, so in the Greater Mysteries as in the Lesser. For once we have been cleansed of our concerns over the dross of this world, may we truly study and know in depth the works of the Holy Men and Women who have gone before us as a Theoricus in the Greater Mysteries. Only then can we truly master the practices and disciplines of magic awakening every latent power and gift of the Holy Spirit as Practici of the Greater Mysteries. And only then, can we finally attain an inner, true, and intimate knowledge of our Creator and the Life He gave us, as a Philosophus of the Greater Mysteries.
Beyond the Outer Order, it is not right for me to speak. For as I am still but a Neophyte of the Greater Mysteries, who am I to speak of such things for the Higher Grades? It is enough for me to accomplish, one day, that One Sight, that One Heart, that One Will and Love that alone will provide for the aspirant, the means to the Higher. May we all achieve this great Peace Profound, and place our treasure, and thus our hearts, in God's hands.
MAY THE LORD KEEP YOU AND BLESS YOU. MAY THE LORD CAUSE HIS FACE TO SHINE UPON YOU. MAY THE LORD TURN HIS FACE TOWARDS YOU ALL AND GRANT YOU PEACE.
In the Name of the Lord of the Universe Who Works in Silence and Whom Not but Silence Can Express, Khabs Am Pekht, Konx Om Pax, Light in Extension.
V.H. Frater I.C.L. 770