Well, I suppose this is as good a place as any to ask a question about something you state in your book “by names and images” – it’s not exactly pertinent to your point here, but close enough I suppose (I would have emailed you but couldn’t find an addy)
You state: “As a general rule the [rose-cross ritual] should not replace the LBRP and I have seen serious problems occur when this is done on a long-term basis.”
Would you mind elaborating? Thanks!
As I wrote my reply, I thought it got too long, and hence have plonked it here in case it’s of interest for others. By the way, I checked the IP and Gayle does exist 🙂
Hi Gayle – thanks for the query. I think the relevant information is in the preceding part of the quote. Fully read it goes:
The [Rose Cross] ritual, unlike the LBRP should not be used to banish any unwanted forces or vibrations, but merely to quiet and astrally seal the atmosphere of a place. If unwanted vibrations or feelings are felt, use the LBRP not the Rose-Cross, or an LBRP then a RC. As a general rule the RC should not replace the LBRP and I have seen serious problems occur when this is done on a long term basis.
Elaboration: The Lesser Pentagram ritual is an outer order process, given to the initiate on the night (or soon after) her Neophyte initiation. There are many different views and ideas on the LRP but all agree it is an outer order based process (which does not mean we stop it in the inner order). Essentially the LRP helps to balance and purify the magician’s everyday self and sphere.
The RC ritual was originally an inner order process. It was given to the magician after the powerful Adept initiation which does an awful lot of things and also links the magician to the Rosicrucian currents. It also works powerfully with the manifold mysteries behind the simple phrase, “the Body of Christ”.
For personal daily practice to help balance and purify we should still use the LRP (or equivalent) and not jump ahead to the RC in its place. An undedicated temple area or one where unwanted (‘negative’) vibrations are felt should be treated in the same manner as our limited, normal human selves; we need to cleanse and balance before invoking.
The RC ritual does not banish. It invokes, in a very particular method the mysteries of Christ. The key again is the phrase, “the Body of Christ”, as intimated by the final YHVShH. Repeated performances of the RC creates and fosters the divinity of the magician (by increasing the presence of (or awareness of, or removing the barriers to) the indwelling Christ, within our bodies. Likewise it does the same to the temple room, on all levels – “Raise the stone and there you shall find me, cleave the wood and there am I.” (Thomas: 30)
Now, some Christian folk may say the name of Christ, being the ‘name above every name’ is enough for all things, including banishing and purification. And certainly if we perform the RC alone, the presence of Christ’s name will remove those negative or unbalanced forces that cannot abide his presence. However, that is not the same as transforming these hindrances, which is what processes like the LRP do though its innate balancing formulae. In practice though, most methods of Christian exorcism and cleansing I am aware of also use other formulae besides the name of Christ, including work with St Michael and other saints to remove and cleanse negative powers and forces.
Certainly in the GD, the Rosicrucian mysteries and in traditional Christian thought (and many other traditions) purification of some sort comes early or first in the process of unfoldment. In traditional Christian theology, eastern and western we have the stages of purgation, illumination and unity (theosis) described first by the Pseudo Dionysius. These three concepts underlie the motifs for the traditional Three Orders: GD (purification and balance) RR et AC (adeptship and illumination) and Third Order (mastership).
With this framework in mind, we see that using the RC instead of the LRP, we are applying a process for expanding and developing our illumination in place of a process for purification. This is by no means as effective and can result in imprecise or incomplete balancing and purification. Interestingly, the same basic concerns underlie some Christian theologians distaste for Matthew Fox’s reworking of the three ways into the four paths of Creation Spirituality – illuminative experiences before proper purification.
I am thinking of one group in particular. Set up by someone with only public (UK) workshop experience in the Inner Light tradition, they taught and advocated the RC alone as both a daily purification ritual but also as a preparation for depth inner and magical work. Over a number of years cracks began to show as the unregenerate aspects of self, which could have been balanced by the LRP, became stronger. Two members had a complete nervous breakdown and others less intense but damaging experiences. The member I spoke to most (after recovery years later) had lingering horror of the RC ritual, which is very sad.
That said, I once had the privilege to be invited to a Christian mystical group who used the RC alone (sans vibratory formula) to dedicate their temple space. However, they did various potent methods of purification and prayer before entering the room, which was then dedicated via the RC each evening. Walking into the room was like walking into the Body of Christ; his presence was real and solid on all levels. The group members had no idea the RC stemmed from an ‘occult’ school and were quite shocked when I pointed this out. It was the only magical ritual they had (somehow) picked up.
Finally, I do not want to give the impression that the Lesser Pentagram Ritual is in any way… lesser 🙂 I recently caught up with an old magician friend, who I really should have kept in touch with over the years. Naturally the conversation drifted to magic and I asked what he was doing these days. Wise and sensible, without a trace of discomfiture he replied, ‘the LRP and not much else’. I thought this was wonderful. Just as there continue to be examples of Tibetans showing physical signs of enlightenment, such as the Rainbow Body, via the Mani Mantra alone, the LRP can, rightly approached, as my friend obviously does, be all we need. To quote Uncle Alick:
‘Properly understood (the LRP) is the medicine of Metals and the stone of the Wise’