I come in the power of Light, I come in the Light of wisdom, I come in the mercy of Light, the Light hath healing in its wings.
Thus it is written in the Neophyte 0=0 Ceremony of the Golden Dawn. I find it interesting to examine this quote some more in order to understand the nature of the work a new initiate is expected to complete. The first part of the quote states “I come in the power of the Light”, this strikes me as the initializing stage of what is to come. For anyone accustomed to practicing magic whether ceremonially or even the foundational magics will know that often much of the preparation stages can formulate a strong awareness of one’s power as a magician. Power in this case isn’t just energy or capability to perform magic but also to engage in the system. It takes power in the form of will in order to face oneself.
The second part states, “I come in the Light of wisdom”. Wisdom in this case can be for a multitude for reasons, ranging from understanding your own motivations for pursuing an initiatory system. Or even the pursuit of Wisdom itself. In the Outer Order Grades its been widely acknowledged that the aims of these grades are to suitably rise or bring awareness to the various issues underlying and potentially inhibiting the magician from advancing in their chosen spiritual path. Its been commented a bit on Dean’s blog here
and on Sincerus Renatus’s blog here
on the huge aid that psychology and psychotherapy can be to the practicing magician. More will be discussed below on my views on this below.
The third part of the quotes goes on to state, “I come in the mercy of the Light”, thus indicating the invaluable role of mercy has in the magical practices. Considering the work of the Outer Order in the elemental grades I believe it’s possible to discern more from this statement. Mercy can be defined as: “an act of compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm”. Within the context of the G.’.D.’. system it would seem to indicate the power one has to show mercy or compassion to one’s self.
And finally, “the Light hath healing in its wings.” Wow, what evocative imagery here. Having engaged in the all the necessary steps we have the imagery of the angelic wings bringing forth healing from within and with out. The pursuit of one’s Holy Guardian Angel is also of relevance here in that time is not solely a linear experience but in this regard I must return to comment after further experience. In any case the overall phrasing seems to emulate the pathway the candidate can expect to change. Prior to my own initiation I must confess some strange dreams involving flying magicians almost angelic like and others yet learning to be thus.
In any paradigm dedicated to the healing of a person, either emotionally, mentally or physically, there are certain group characteristics that tend to come to the fore eventually. As a person comes more into themselves the new sense of strength is bound to be extended into the relationships around them. Within the confines of a Temple or Order this ‘new’ stage can result in conflicts amongst members. Nick Farrell commented in his book, ‘Gathering the Magic: Creating 21st Century Esoteric Groups’
, on how after time it has been observed in esoteric groups a “breaking out” point as the initiate has worked on themselves and now how the group may have certain difficulties embracing the new social equilibrium. In this regard other mundane areas of study such as sociology can aid in people’s understanding of the process. In and off itself Sociology as a paradigm developed from people wishing to understand group psychology more. We are afterall social creatures and as all too often happens when people spend any extended period on introspection there can be an over focus on the alchemical changes we as magicians wish to engage. And to what end one may wonder?
Even within esoteric and magical systems there can develop an over dependency on healing. Without returning to the ‘mundane’ world around us how will we ever gauge these developments? Amongst our peers also seeking change and usually from a different stand point in their own personal stage?