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CEREMONY OF THE EQUINOX

 

 

This Ceremony is held twice yearly: THE VERNAL EQUINOX about March 21st the AUTUMNAL EQUINOX about September 21st. (Officers assemble and Robe. Chiefs seat themselves on the Dais. Members gowned and wearing their sashes enter and sit as far as possible by members of the same grade. Inner Members in the East, Philosophi in the South, Practici and Theorici in the West, Zelatores and Neophytes in the North. The Temple is opened in the Neophyte Grade. All are seated.)

 

Hiero:

(Knocks) Fratres and Sorores of all Grades of the Golden Dawn in the Outer, let us celebrate the Festival of the VERNAL (Autumnal) EQUINOX.

 (All rise except Hierophant.)

(Knocks) Frater Kerux, proclaim the EQUINOX and announce that the Pass-word is abrogated.

 (Kerux passes to the North East, raises his Wand, and facing West, says:)

 

Kerux:

In the Name of the Lord of the Universe, and by command of the Very Honoured Hierophant, I proclaim that the VERNAL (autumnal) EQUINOX is here and that the Pass-word is abrogated. (Kerux returns to his place. Members stand facing towards the Altar and follow the Officers in making the Signs towards it.)

 

Hiero:

Let us consecrate according to ancient custom the return of the Equinox.

Hiero:

LIGHT

 

Hiereus:

DAR KNESS

 

Hiero:

EAST

 

Hiereus:

WEST

 

Hiero:

AIR

 

Hiereus:

WATER

 

Heg:

(Knocks) I am the Reconciler between them. (All make Neophyte Signs towards the Altar.)

 

Dad:

HEAT

 

Stol:

COLD

 

Dad:

SOUTH

 

Stol:

NORTH

 

Dad:

FIRE

 

Stol:

EARTH

 

Heg:

(Knocks) I am the Reconciler beteen them. (All make Signs towards the Altar.)

Hiero:

ONE CREATOR

 

Dad:

ONE PRESERVER

 

Hiereus:

ONE DESTROYER

 

Stol:

ONE REDEEMER

 

Heg:

(Knocks) One Reconciler between them. (All make Signs towards the Altar. Hierophant goes to the West of the Altar and lays down his Sceptre, saying:)

 

Hiero:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Sceptre. (Hierophant takes the ROSE from the Altar and returns to his place. Hiereus passes direct to the Altar and lays down his Sword, saying:)

 

Hiereus:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Sword. (Hiereus takes the Cup of Wine and returns to place. Hegemon comes direct to the East of the Altar and lays down Sceptre, saying:)

 

Heg:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Sceptre. (Hegemon remains standing East of the Altar. Kerux comes direct to the Altar, hands his Lamp to Hegemon, and lays down his Wand, saying:)

 

Kerux:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Lamp and Wand. (Kerux returns to his place. Hegemon also returns, taking Lamp of Kerux. (Stolistes comes round by East and South to West of Altar and puts down Cup, saying:)

 

Stol:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Cup. (Stolistes takes the Paten of Bread and Salt and returns to place. Dadouchos comes direct to the Altar and lays down his Censer, saying:)

 

Dad:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Censer. (Dad ouchos takes the Red Lamp from the Altar and returns with Sun to his place.)

(Sentinel comes by South to East of the Altar and puts down his Sword, saying:)

 

Sent:

With the Pass-word I lay down my Sword. (He returns by North and East to his place.

Kerux passes to the North East to begin his Circumambulation. As he reaches each

Quarter, and the Prayer is said, Officers and Members face that Quarter and at the end of

the Prayer, all make Signs towards the Quarter. Kerux moves to the East and halts before

Hierophant, who, holding up the Rose, faces East. All face East.)

 

Hiero:

Let us adore the Lord of the Universe. Holy art Thou, Lord of the AIR, Who hast created the Firmament. (Hierophant makes a Cross in the Air with the Rose and salutes. All salute. Kerux passes to the South and faces Dadouchos, who turns South holding up the Lamp. All face South.)

 

Dad:

Let us adore the Lord of the Universe. Holy art Thou, Lord of FIRE, wherein Thou hast shown forth the Throne of Thy Glory. (Dadouchos makes a Cross with the Lamp and salutes. All salute. Kerux passes to West and faces Hiereus, who turns West holding Cup on high. All face West.)

 

Hiereus:

Let us adore the Lord of the Universe. Holy art Thou, Lord of the WATERS, whereon Thy Spirit moved at the Beginning. (Hiereus makes a Cross with the Cup, and salutes. All salute. Kerux passes to the North and faces Stolistes, who turns North, holding Paten on high, and says:)

 

Stol:

Let us adore the Lord of the Universe. Holy art Thou, Lord of the EARTH, which Thou hast made for Thy Footstool! (Stolistes makes a Cross with the Paten and salutes. All salute. Kerux passes round the Temple to his place. All face towards the Altar. Hegemon stands East of the Altar, facing West, and holding Kerux’s Lamp on high, says:)

 

Heg:

Let us adore the Lord of the Universe. Holy art Thou, Who art in all things, in Whom are all things. If I climb up to Heaven, Thou art there and if I go down to Hell Thou art there also! If I take the Wings of the Morning and flee unto the uttermost parts of the Sea, Even there shall Thy hand lead me and Thy right hand shall hold me. If I say, Peradventure the Darkness shall cover me, even the Night shall be turned Light unto Thee! Thine is the AIR with its Movement! Thine is the FIRE with its Flashing Flame! Thine is the WATER with its Ebb and Flow! Thine is the EARTH with its enduring Stability! (Hegemon makes a Cross over the Altar with the Lamp. All salute towards the Altar. Hegemon keeps the Lamp. All sit down. Imperator rises and knocks, and says:)

Imper:

By the Power and Authority vested in me, I confer the new Pass-word. It is (XYZ).

 

(Hierophant, taking the Rose, quits his Throne, which is taken by Imperator.

Hierophant then goes East of the Altar and lays down the Rose. He returns to the East and

lays his Lamen and Cloak at the foot of the Throne, and takes his place in the East as a

Member of the Temple. In the same manner, Hiereus puts down the Cup, Hegemon the

Lamp of Kerux, Stolistes the Paten, Dadouchos the Red Lamp in turn, and lay their

Lamens at the foot of the Throne. Kerux, after Hegemon, and Sentinel last, lay their

Lamens at the foot of the Throne and all are seated with Members of their own rank.

Praemonstrator rises to read out the names of the new Officers.)

 

Praem:

The Officers appointed to do the Work of the Temple for the ensuing six months are.. (at the end, he says:)

 

Praem:

The Fraters and Sorores of the Outer Order will now retire for a season.

(Kerux gathers up and leads out all who have not attained the White Sash. There is a pause while the New Officers are provided with Nemysses and Lamen Collars. Outer Order Members, taking Office, should take these things with them and clothe outside in readiness for their Installation by the new Hierophant now to be appointed. All Inner Order Members now present assume their Rose-Crosses. Chief takes his place on the Throne of East. Second on his left; Third on his right. Lesser Officers leave dais and take seats among other Members.)

 

(N.B. I have examined several of the early Order rituals including one each of the A.O., and Golden Dawn - and in none of them is there anything resembling this segment. In view of the style of the Ritual etc. I am obliged to assume that this is a literary creation of Dr. Felkins. In stating this, I am not to be construed as being condemnatory. On the contrary, especially after reading the earliest Rituals of the Order, lam convinced that Dr. Felkins or whoever was responsible for editing some of the Order documents in the Stella Matutina, did an exemplary job. The editing was extremely well done. So well done in fact that criticism is rendered unnecessary. And in so stating, it is clear that I am not to be numbered amongst those who are critical of the Stella Matutina. Perhaps its emphasis on skrying may have been exaggerated, but a human Order has to have some faults. Again, let me state the editing was superbly executed. I.R.)

 

Chief:

Peace Profound, my Brethren. (He rises.)

 

Second:

Emanuel. (He rises.)

Third:

God is with us. (He rises.)

 

Chief:

In Nomine Dei viventis.

 

Second:

Et vivificantis.

 

Chief:

Qui vivit et regnet in saecula saeculorum.

 

Third:

Amen.

 

Chief:

Avete, Fratres et Sorores.

 

Second:

Roseae Rubeae.

 

Third:

Et Aureae Crucis.

 

Chief:

Very Honoured Fratres et Sorores, seeing that the things which are above do continually lift up unto their high estate the things which are below, and do thence return them after a certain great transfiguration, that the work of Wisdom may continue and that the Grace and Sanctification of the Holy and Glorious Zion may be communicated to the Zion which is on Earth, wherefore the worlds rejoice together and are fulfilled in all completion, I beseech you to join with me in my intention, and to ratify in your hearts, the solemn and sacramental words by which I assume this external and visible Temple of the Golden Dawn into the House not made by hands, builded of lively stones the Company of the Adepts. And it is so assumed accordingly.

 

Second:

Cum Potestate et Gloria.

 

Third:

Amen! (The Chiefs are seated.)

 

Chief:

Fratres et Sorores of the Roseae Rubeae et Aureae Crucis. We know that the Mystic Temple, which was erected of old by Wisdom, as a Witness of the Mysteries which are

above the Sphere of Knowledge, doth abide in the Supernal Triad, in the Understanding which transcends Reason, in the Wisdom which comes before Understanding and in the Crown which is the Light of the Supernals. We know that the Shekinah, the co-habiting Glory, dwelt in the Inner Sanctuary, but the first Creation was made void. The Holy Place was made waste and the Sons of the House of Wisdom were taken away into the captivity of the Senses. We have worshipped since then in a house made with hands, receiving a Sacramental Ministration by a derived Light in place of the Co-habiting Glory. And yet, amidst Signs and Symbols the Tokens of the Higher Presence have never been wanting in our hearts. By the Waters of Babylon we have sat down and wept, but we have ever remembered Zion, and that Memorial is a Witness testifying that we shall yet return with exultation into the House of our Father. As a Witness in the Temple of the Heart, so in the Outer House of our Initiation, we have ever present certain Watchers from within, deputed by the Second Order to guard and lead the Lesser Mysteries of the Golden Dawn and those who advance therein, that they may be fitted in due course to participate in the Light which is beyond it. It is in virtue of this connecting link, this bond of consanguinity, that I have assumed the things which are without in the Temple of the Golden Dawn into the things which are within the company of the Second Order at this secret meeting held at the Equinox for the solemn purpose of proclaiming a new Hierophant charged with the Rites of the Temple during the ensuing six months, being a part of the temporary period which intervenes between us and our rest.

 

Second:

Let us work, therefore, my Brethren and effect righteousness, because the Night cometh.

 

Third:

Wherein no man shall labour.

 

Chief:

(Rises) Fratres and Sorores of the Roseae Rubeae et Aureae Crucis, by the power in me vested, I proceed to the installation and investiture of the Hierophant of the Golden Dawn Temple in the Order of the R.R. et A.C. in the Portal of the Vault of the Adepti.

 

Second:

(Rises) Benedictus qui venit.

 

Third:

(Rises) In Nomine Domini. (The ±hree Adepti give LVX signs, and seat themselves.)

 

Chief:

Very Honoured Frater, at the discretion of the Chiefs of the Second Order you have been appointed to the Office of Hierophant of this Temple for the ensuing six months. Are you willing to assume its duties and responsibilities?

Hiero:

I am.

 

Chief:

Then I will thank you to advance to the East, giving the Grand Sign of the Order of the R.R. et A.C. (Done.)

 

Second:

Benedictus Dominus deus Noster.

 

Third:

Qui dedit nobis hoc Signum (touches Rose Cross on breast.)

 

Chief:

Very Honoured Frater (XYZ) standing in the Eastern place of the Temple, I will thank you to give me the secret word ofthe Order R.R. et A.C. (Done.)

 

Second:

Habes Verbum.

 

Third:

Et verbum caro factum est, et habitavit in nobis.

 

Chief:

(Rises) Wherefore, Brethren, let us remember that when the Body is assumed by the Word, the Man becomes a living Soul. For which reason we persevere in the Pathway of the Cross as we look for the Assumption of the Rose. The Very Honoured Adeptus Secundus will now deliver the Charge before Installation. (He sits down.)

 

Second:

(Rises) The high Office to which you have been appointed by the decree of the Chiefs of the Second Order involves duties of a solemn kind and their proper fulfilment is a sacred responsibility which rests for a period upon you. While the rule of the Outer Order is more particularly committed to the Imperator, while the instruction of its members is entrusted to the Praemonstrator above all, and the general business of the Temple devolves especially upon the Cancellarius, amidst the distinction of these services there is still a common ground of interaction which must be maintained by a perfect adjustment to ensure the right conduct and harmony of the whole. In like manner, the Chief Officers of the Temple are distinct and yet allied; the perfection and beauty of its Ritual depends indeed upon the Hierophant as the Expounder of the Mysteries, but not on him alone. For all must work together to encompass the good of all. I invite you, therefore, not only to take counsel with the Chiefs of the Second Order on all important occasions and to maintain a regular communication with the Guardians of the Outer Temple, but to consult and assist the Lesser Officers so that these Rites which, under the Supreme Authority, are about to be placed in your hands, may, after your term of Office, be restored to the Chief Adept not merely intact in their working but showing an increased beauty and a greater Light of Symbolism. Thus and thus only will you give, when the time comes, a good account of your stewardship. Let me further remind you that the Guardians of the Outer Temple should at all time, in all things, command your respect as the Deputies of the Absolute Power which dwells behind the Veil, directing all things in the two Orders for the attainment of its Divine Ends. Let the memory of these objects abide with you, even as it abides in them and do you assist them in their labour so to direct the Temple that Peace may be maintained with Power. (He sits down. Chief rises.)

 

Chief:

In the presence of this solemn Convocation of Adepti of the Second Order, seated in this assumed Temple, I again ask you whether you are prepared in your mind to accept the responsible Office to which you have been appointed?

 

Hiero:

I am.

 

Chief:

Then you will kneel down, repeat the Sacramental Name by which you are known in the Order and say after me: I, Frater (XYZ), in the Name of the Lord of the Universe, and of that Eternal and Unchangeable Unity which I seek in common with my Brethren, do solemnly promise, that I will, to the utmost of my power, fulfil the high Office which has been imposed upon me, and by me acccepted freely, for the good of the whole Order; that I will maintain the rites of the Order and observe the duties of my position with conscientiousness and loving care, not alone towards the Temple itself, but every individual Member; that I will co-operate with the Guardians of the Temple; that I will execute the decree of the Chiefs of the Second Order, acting with justice and without fear or favour in accordance with the dictates of my conscience. This I affirm by the Symbol worn upon the breast of the Officiating Adept. (Hiero. is directed to stretch out his hand in the direction of the Rose-Cross on Chief Adept’s breast.)

 

Arise, Very Honoured Frater and receive at my hand the highest Office I can bestow upon you in this Temple. By the Power in me vested, I now appoint you Hierophant of the Golden Dawn Temple to work and confer the Grades of the Outer Order, under the dispensation of the Chiefs during the ensuing six months. May the Light which is behind the Veil shine through you from your Throne in the East on the Fratres and Sorores of the Order, and lead them to the Perfect Day.

 

Second:

When the Glory of this World passes.

Third:

And a Great Light shines over the Splendid Sea. (Chief invests Hierophant with Robes assisted by a server.)

 

Chief:

I clothe you with the Robe of a Hierophant. Bear it unspotted, my brother, during the period of your office. Keep clean your heart beneath it, so shall it sanctify your flesh and prepare you for that great Day when you, who are now clothed by the Power of the Order, shall be unclothed from the body of your death. I invest you also with the Lamen of your Office; may the virtue which it typifies without, be present efficaciously within you, and after the term of your present dignity, may such virtue still maintain you in your search after the White Stone on which a New Name is written which no man knoweth save he who receiveth it. You will now pass to the symbolic Altar of the Universe and assume the Sceptre of the Hierophant. (Hiero, goes to West of Altar, raises Sceptre in both hands and says:)

 

Hiero:

By the Pass-word. I claim my Sceptre. (He returns to East. Chief takes him by both hands and enthrones him with the grip of the Second Order.)

 

Chief:

By the Power in me vested, I install you Hierophant of the Golden Dawn Temple. May the steps of this Throne lead you to your proper place among the Seats of the Mighty which are above. (He turns to Members.) Behold my Brethren, him who now stands amongst us, clothed with the attribute of lawful Revealer of the Mysteries for those whom we are leading towards the Light. You are the Adepti of those Mysteries and you can assist him to proclaim them, that those who are still without may be lead by loving hands to that which is within. Fratres and Sorores of the R.R. et A.C., I now invite you to join with me in a common act of prayer. (All face East.)

 

We give Thee thanks, Supreme and Gracious God, for the manifestation of Thy Light which is vouchsafed to us, for that measure of knowledge which Thou hast revealed to us concerning Thy Mysteries, for those guiding Hands which raise the corner of the Veil and for the firm hope of a further Light beyond. Keep, we beseech Thee, this man our brother, in the Justice of Thy Ways, in the Spirit of Thy Great Council, that he may well and worthily direct those who have been called from the tribulation of the Darkness into the Light of this little Kingdom of Thy Love; and vouchsafe also, that going forward in love for Thee, through Him and with Him, they may pass from the Desire of Thy house into the Light of Thy Presence.

 

Second:

The Desire of Thy House hath eaten me up.

Third:

I desire to be dissolved and to be with Thee.

 

Chief:

God save you, Fratres et Sorores. The work of the Light for which we have assumed this Temple has been accomplished faithfully, and the Temple has received its Hierophant. By the power in me vested, I now remit it into its due place in the Outer World taking with it the Graces and benedictions which at this time we have been permitted to bestow thereon. And it is so remitted accordingly. In Nomine Dei Viventis.

 

Second:

Et vivificantis.

 

Chief:

Qui vivit et regnet in saecula saeculorum.

 

Third:

Amen. (All Adepti give LVX Signs, and resume their proper places in the Temple. They remove Rose Crosses. Praemonstrator goes to the door, opens it and says:)

 

Praem:

The Brethren of the Outer Order will resume their places in the Temple. (Done. Door closed. Chief rises, and says:)

 

Chief:

Fratres et Sorores of the Order of the Golden Dawn behold your Hierophant, our Frater (XYZ) who has been regularly installed and enthroned, and by the power in me vested, I proclaim him the Revealer of Mysteries among you for the ensuing six months, being part of that temporal period through which we are conducted into Light. Very Honoured Frater, in the presence of the Children of your Temple, I call upon you to make your Confession.

 

Hiero:

(Rising) 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. (He sits down. The installation of the Lesser Officers is now proceeded with. Cloaks and Lamens are arranged at the foot of the Dais, ready for the Server to hand them to Hierophant. The Ceremony of Installation follows immediately the Confession of the Hierophant. The Outer Members are called in by Praemonstrator and Kerux sees that all have places. Hierophant reads his Confession, then says:)

 

Hiero:

In virtue of the power to me committed, I proceed to invest my Officers. Let the Hiereus come to the East. (Hiereus, standing in the East, is invested with the Cloak by the Server, who also clips the Lamen in place and Hierophant holds the Lamen while saying:)

 

Hiero:

By the power to me committed, I ordain you Hiereus of this Temple for the ensuing six months, and I pray that from your Throne in the West, symbolising the failing light, you also, may lead the Fratres and Sorores of the Order, to the full Light in the end, and that you and they, in the midst of material gloom, will ever remember that the Divine Darkness is the same as the Divine Glory. (Hiereus passes to the East of the Altar and takes up the Sword, saying:)

 

Hiereus:

By the Password I claim my Sword. (He goes to his Throne. When he is seated, Hierophant says:)

 

Hiero:

Let the Hegemon come to the East. (Hegemon is given the Cloak and Lamen in the same way, and Hierophant, holding the Lamen, says:)

 

By the power to me committed, I ordain you Hegemon of this Temple for the ensuing six months, and I pray that from between the Pillars, you may lead the Fratres and Sorores into the equilibrium of perfect reconciliation. (Hegemon goes to the East of the Altar, takes his Sceptre, and says:)

 

Heg:

By the Password 1 claim my Sceptre. (Takes his place.)

 

Hiero:

Let the Kerux come to the East. (Kerux and other Officers to follow are served with the Lamen which Hierophant holds while addressing them.)

 

By the power to me committed, I ordain you Kerux of this Temple for the ensuing six months, to guard the inner side of the Portal, and to lead all Mystic Processions. I pray that you may ever go before us with the Torch of the Higher Luminaries, uttering the Watch­words of the Day. Thanks be to God, my brother, for the Admirable Light.

 

Kerux:

By the Password I claim my Lamp and Wand.

 

Hiero:

Let the Stolistes come to the East. (Done.) By the power to me committed, I ordain you Stolistes of this Temple for the ensuing six months, to watch over the Cup of Clear Water, and to purify the Hall, the Brethren and the Candidate. May you also, in your own Soul, be sprinkled with Hyssop and be cleansed. May you be washed and made whiter than snow. Thanks be to God, my brother, for the living Water which purifies the whole Creation.

 

Stol:

By the Password I claim my Cup.

 

Hiero:

Let the Dadouchos come to the East. (Done.) By the power to me committed, I ordain you Dadouchos of this Temple for the ensuing six months, to watch over the Fires of the Temple and to perform the Consecrations by Fire. Remember the sweet odour of the Greater Sanctuary, and the Savour of the Beauty of the House. Thanks be to God, my brother, for the true Incense which hallows our life.

 

Dad:

By the Password I claim my Censer.

 

Hiero:

Let the Sentinel come to the East. (Done.) By the power to me committed, I ordain you Sentinel of this Temple for the ensuing six months. Be thou faithful, keep strict watch without, lest any Evil enter our Sacred Hall.

 

Sent:

By the Password I claim my Sword.

 

(Hierophant sits down. All are seated. Kerux comes forward and arranges the Elements properly upon the Altar. The Chiefs will now make any announcements. The Hierophant can address the Temple. When he has finished, he gives one knock and Kerux comes forward to begin the Closing, which is that of the Neophyte Grade.)