Monday, October 24, 2011

The "Restrictive" Golden Dawn

Most of my friends do not practice as I do. They refer to themselves as witches, druids, Wiccans and the like. I refer to myself as a magician that practices in the style of the Golden Dawn. I can't actually say I am Golden Dawn without having to deal with one of the copyright holders of that name. Frankly, I do not need their validation, charter or anything else. My work is my proof of lineage.

That said, I hear many comments asking me why I am part of such a "restrictive" system. The answer to that is two-fold. The first is that in group that I was a part of, I learned the following:

  • A Universal estoteric map of the universe.
  • An entire hierarchy of high level names of G-d, archangels, and angels
  • An entire hierarchy of high level names of planetary angels, intelligences and spirits
  • A similar hierarchy of elemental spirits
  • A four level color scheme
  • Banishing exercises
  • Invoking exercies
  • Ritual mythology
  • Ritual creation
  • Meditative techniques
  • Skrying techniques
  • Tarot
  • Geomancy
  • Tattwas
  • God form invocation
  • Evocation
  • A protective egregore
  • Hermetic Philosophy
  • A pantheon of gods (Egyptian)
  • Chaldean Oracles
  • Enochian magick
  • Thought-form creation (artificial elementals)
  • Hebrew (for use in magick)
  • The creation of talismans
  • The ability to learn various forms of self-purification
  • The power of initiation
  • Working as an initiatory team (I've performed over 150 GD style initiation as a floor officer)
  • I have learned about my issues with earth, air, water and fire.
  • I have learned of my virtues with those elements as well.
  • There is likely much that I've left out. 
Now exactly how restrictive does that sound? To me, it sounds very wide ranging. 

The other answer is that my GD style work has always lead to a goal. The first is Knowledge and Conversation with my Holy Guardian Angel and the second is unification with my immortal soul, which we call the Greater Neschemah. Most of the other traditions I know of, have no similar goals and instead lead a meandering path that may or may not result in unification with a God or Goddess. GD style work takes one to a given place that I wanted to go. 

I don't blame you for not wanting to go where I do. Nor do I find fault on those that follow a meandering path. I've watched people meander in circles that never seem to get anywhere as well as those that meander and find exactly what they are looking for. It is basically a crap shoot for them. And yes, it is a crap shoot in GD workers as well. They have a tendency to fall away along the path but always with more knowledge then they came in with. 

As long as you take it seriously, I think nearly any path can lead somewhere. The question is, are you going where you want to go? I know I am. My only question is, can I succeed?


Frater A.I.T. said...

Right on. I think some segments of the broader community see a certain amount of organisation--or, gods forbid, direction--as stifling or restrictive.

nutty professor said...

Man, how I respect your knowledge and training! That list sounded like Harvard! Hell yeah it is restrictive, even elite organizationally, but now that you have your degree, you give them the credit but set your own goals, using your knowledge to teach others (professor) and for yourself to become One.

I hope my analogies are correct. This seems like the best life! ...but only when the pendulum isn't swinging too hard...

Robert said...

My mentor used to say that getting into GD work meant that you'd get out with a Bachelor's in the Western Magickal Tradition. I generally agree sorta. I'd say in the English tradition or something like that.

There is so magick in the West that is not covered hoodoo, voodoo, Native American, Santeria, the list goes on and on. There is so much out there.

I think AIT has it right. Some people see any structure as restrictive rather than a graduated education. These folks have no problem with structured learning in college but in magick they view it as a detriment.

Panmankey said...

"I can't actually say I am Golden Dawn without having to deal with one of the copyright holders of that name. Frankly, I do not need their validation, charter or anything else. My work is my proof of lineage."

I love that thought. The end of it; "My work is my proof of lineage," is just such a powerful statement.

Nick Farrell said...

I remember being told that the Golden Dawn did long and boring rituals.... then I sat through a two hour pathworking which involved taking part in a migrating flight of geese. I actually like long rituals it gives you a chance to play with the power.