This was one of the later versions of the Historic Lecture that was circulated among the American temples of the A:.O:. –Soror S.J.
The Order of the G.D. in the Outer is a Hermetic Society whose members
are taught the principles of Occult Science and the Magic of Hermes.
During the early part of the second half of the 19th Century, several
adepti and chiefs of this order in France and England died, and their
deaths caused a temporarily dormant condition of Temple work. Prominent
among these were Eliphas Levi, Ragon, Kenneth R. H. Mackenzie, author of
the Masonic Encyclopedia and Frederick Hockley, possessed of crystal
vision whose M.S.S. we highly esteemed. These and other adepti received
their knowledge and power from predecessors of greater imminence and
have handed down to us this doctrine and system of Theosophy and
Hermetic Science of the Higher Alchemy from a series of practical
investigations whose origin is traced to the Fratres Rosae Crucis of
Germany, which association was founded by Christian Rosenkreuz about 1398.
He and the theologian, Valentine Andrea, have left us, in the works
published about 1614, an account of the exoteric arrangements of the
Rosicrucian Society. It seems likely it was Andrea who published in 1614
the Fama Fraternitatis, or Theory of the Society, which must have been
derived from the old records of the pupils of Christian Rosenkrawz. But
even this arrival of mysticism was a new development of the older wisdom
of the Qabalistic Rabbis and of that very ancient secret knowledge of
the magic of the Egyptians into which Moses had been initiated. Through
the Qabalah, indeed, Europe became possessed of the ancient Wisdom more
than from any one other source, for the Hebrews were taught at one time
by the Egyptians and later by the Chaldees of Babylon.
It is a curious fact that the classic nations, the Greeks and Romans,
have handed down to us but slight glimpses of the Ancient Magic, and
this is more notable because Greece succeeded to the mastership of
Egypt, and Rome to the Empire of both the Greeks and Jews. Greece did
indeed succeed to a share in the mysteries of the Egyptians for the
Eleusinian Mysteries were copies of the ancient ceremonies of Isis,
Osiris and Serapis; but they lacked true magic. And further, the classic
writings contain but faint glimpses of even the Eleusinian Mysteries,
and these disclose the fact that the pupils were partly ignorant of the
true mysteries, a notable example of which is seen in the use of the
words Konx Om Pax, of which they knew not the meaning, the words being
the Greek imitation or translation of really ancient Egyptian words,
whose meanings has been kept secret for centuries. Hence the 0=0 Grade
is found to possess Egyptian characteristics and symbolism and the
Higher Grades will reveal the source of much of the culture and
illustrate the language of Eliphas Levi, through whose adeptship the
study of occultism has been popularized.
The First Order is a group of four grades of which Neophytes are
admissible when approved by the G.H. Chiefs after showing themselves
possessed of sufficient aptitude and knowledge. Beyond the above, there
are three grades of Adeptship forming the Second Order . These have the
power of selecting Candidates, initiating students into the lower grades
and their Chiefs have, in addition, the power of issuing warrants of
Temples such as that of Isis Urania. But the highest of all in this
ancient scheme are the Great Rulers of the whole system who severally
sustain and govern the Third Order, which includes three Magic Titles of
Honor and Supremacy. These represent the Supernal Triad of the Sephiroth
and are shrouded and unapproachable to the profane and to all others but
the Chiefs of the Adepts. In case of a vacancy in this Order, the Chief
most learned Adept obtains by decree the well-earned award.
The scheme of the G.D. then is formed upon the type of the Decad of the
Sephiroth, the ten Emanations of Deity as figured in the Qabalah whose
professors were illuminated by the higher magic of the ancient world.
The grades of the First Order will be found to be Hebrew in design and
tendency; and inasmuch as the influx of time brought on the revelation
of the Christos, the Tiphareth, the Beauty of Microprosopos, Christian
design is reflected in the higher degrees.
The Neophyte Grade and the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Grades, which this
present Isis Urania Temple is authorized to confer after due examination
and approval, posses rituals and secrets which have been received from
the G.H. Chief adepts and these are placed in our hands to use in the
tuition of pupils in the ancient methods of this Order. This Temple
(Isis Urania) was consecrated as a successor to Hermanubis No. 2 which
had ceased to exist owing to the death of all its Chiefs.
The Temple No. 1 of Licht, Liebe, Libra is a group of Continental
mystics who have not been in the habit of performing ceremonies in open
lodge, but have conferred the grades chiefly in privacy and in the
presence of two or three members, so there is no accurate record of name
and rank of all these members. Soon after the formation of Temple No. 3,
permission was granted for the consecration of Osiris Temple No. 4 at
Weston-Super-Mare under rule of V.H. Frater “Crux dat Salubrem” and the
West of England has been assigned to him as a province. Almost at the
same time, the Horus Temple No. 5 under the rule of V.H. Fratre “Vote
Vita Mea” was also consecrated at Bredford in Yorkshire. These three
Temples have members also in the United States, Hindustan, Palestine,
The name of the Order in various languages is:
In Hebrew: Morning Light Shining Society (Chabrath (or Chaorah) Zoreh
which means The Society of the Shining Light of Dawn.
In Latin: Aurora.
In German: Die Goldene Demmerung.
In French: L’Aube d’ OrÆ.
Reference may now be made to the Society which was reconstructed by
Robert Wentworth Little, student of the mysteries. This Society, which
has branches in England, Scotland and the United States, is allied with
the G.D. It perpetuated one form of Rosicrucian initiation which was
conferred 100 years ago in England and which was mentioned by Godfrey
Higgins in his work The Anacalypsis, or an Attempt to Withdraw the Veil
of the Saitic Isis. Fratre Little was a student of the school of Levi
and also an eminent Freemason, and the Rosicrucian Society as revised by
him was made by intention and permission essentially masonic, thus
severing all connection with those Adepts who have not been Craftsmen,
as Basil Valentine, Artephus, Nicolas Flamel, Jacob Behmen and Robert
Fludd. The Rosicrucian Society in the same manner fails to recognize any
worth for occult research in women. This is also an innovation or the
scheme of the Ancient Mysteries in many of which, notably those of Isis
priestesses and virgin prophetesses, were prominent ministers.
Note specifically, that there are several instances in the ancient M.S.
of our Order, which are written in cypher, where reference is made to
the fratres and sorores, the words “her or him” occur showing that in
olden time, as at the present day, women rose to high rank and
attainment in the secret knowledge of the Order. Mention may be suitably
made to Pernelle, the wife and fellow-worker of Nicolas Flamel, of
Martine Berthereau, companion of Baron Jean de Chatelet who died about
1645 and of the widow lady afterwards symbolized by him as Sophia
(Heavenly Wisdom), fellow student and inspirer of John Georg Gichtel who
died about 1700. The occultists of today cannot need to be reminded of
the great Hermetists and Theosophists of recent times: of D. Anna
Kingsford, who was indeed illuminated by the Sun of Light; of Madame
Blavatsky, leader of the T.S. No occult student, however wide apart his
own favored path of wisdom, could fail to recognize in her a master mind
in a woman’s frame.
I cannot fail to express the lament which followed the passing of
D.William Robert Woodman, for many years known as the supreme Magus of
the Society Ros. in Anglia which is exoteric in its outer grades but
whose concerns are regulated by an inner circle of adepti who still hold
the secrets of the R.:. C.:. and its masonic society.
The eastern school of Theosophy and Occultism and our own Hermetic
Society of the G.D. are fraternities of students whose predecessors must
have come from the same stock of magi as the scientific priests of a
remote antiquity. The two Societies, different in modes of teaching and
in language, are allied by mutual understanding and respect, and their
aim is similar. Be assured that the Order of the G.D. can show the way
to much secret knowledge and spiritual progress and lead true and
patient students who can Will, Dare, Learn and Be Silent to the Summum
Bonum, True Wisdom, and Perfect Happiness.