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Method of Initiaton

The Universality of Initiation - Initiation & Revelation - The Path of Initiation
The Door of Initiation - Initiation and energies - Groupinitiation - Method of Initiation

Realisation - Application - Utilisation

It will be apparent that, should he search these subjects with application, the student will find much that concerns him personally, even though the ceremony itself may be far ahead. By the study of the process and the purpose he may become aware of the great fundamental fact that the method of initiation is the method of:

a.  Force realisation.
b.  Force application.
c.   Force utilisation.

The initiate of every degree, from the humble initiate of the first degree, making for the first time his contact with a certain type of specialised force, up to the emancipated buddha of the seventh degree, is dealing with energy of some kind or other. The stages of development of the aspirant might be expressed as follows:

1. He has to become aware, through discrimination, of the energy or force of his own lower self.

2. He has to impose upon that energetic rhythm one that is higher, until that lower rhythm is superseded by the higher, and the old method of expressing energy dies out entirely.

3. He then is permitted, by gradually expanding realisations, to contact and - under guidance - to employ certain forms of group energy, until the time comes when he is in a position scientifically to wield planetary force. The length of time taken over his final stage is entirely dependent upon the progress he makes in the service of his race and in the development of those powers of the soul which are the natural sequence of spiritual unfoldment.

The application of the Rod of Initiation at the first two initiations by the Bodhisattva (the Maitreya) enables the initiate to control and utilise the force of the lower self, the true sanctified energy of the personality in service; at the third initiation the application of the Rod by the One Initiator makes available in a vastly more extensive manner the force of the higher self or soul, and brings into play on the physical plane the entire energy stored up during numerous incarnations in the causal vehicle. At the fourth initiation the energy of his soul group becomes his to use for the good of planetary evolution, and at the fifth initiation the force or energy of the planet (esoterically understood, and not merely the force or energy of the material globe) is at his disposal.
During these five initiations those two great beings, the Bodhisattva first, and then the One Initiator, the Lord of the World, Sanat Kumara, are the administrators or hierophants. After these ceremonies, should the initiate choose to take the two final initiations (sixth and seventh) which it is possible to take in this solar system, a still higher type of energy in expression of the One Self comes into play, and can only be hinted at.

At the seventh initiation that One of Whom Sanat Kumara is the manifestation, the Logos of our scheme on His own plane, becomes the Hierophant. At the sixth initiation the expression of this Existence on an intermediate plane, a Being Who must at present remain nameless, wields the Rod and administers the oath and secret. In these three expressions of hierarchical government - Sanat Kumara on the periphery of the three worlds, the Nameless One on the confines of the high planes of human evolution, and the planetary Spirit himself at the final stage - we have the three great manifestations of the Planetary Logos Himself. Through the Planetary Logos at the final great initiation flows the power of the Solar Logos, and He it is Who reveals to the initiate that the Absolute is consciousness in its fullest expression, though at the stage of human existence the Absolute must be regarded as unconsciousness.

Each of the great initiations is but the synthesis of the smaller ones, and only as man seeks ever to expand his consciousness in the affairs of daily life can he expect to achieve those later stages which are but culminations of the many earlier. Students must get rid of the idea that if they are "very good and altruistic" suddenly some day they will stand before the Great Lord. They are putting effect before cause. Goodness and altruism grow out of realisation and service, and holiness of character is the outcome of those expansions of consciousness which a man brings about within himself through strenuous effort and endeavour.

Therefore it is here and now that man can prepare himself for initiation, and this he does, not by dwelling upon the ceremonial aspect, as so many do in excited anticipation, but by working systematically and enduringly at the steady development of the mental body, by the strenuous and arduous process of controlling the astral body so that it becomes responsive to three vibrations:

a. That from the Soul.
b. That from the Master.
c. Those from his brothers everywhere around him.

He becomes sensitive to the voice of his higher self, thus working off karma under the intelligent guidance of his own soul. He becomes conscious, via the soul, of the vibration emanating from his Master; he learns to feel it ever more and more, and to respond to it ever more fully; finally, he becomes increasingly sensitive to the joys and pains and sorrows of those he daily contacts; he feels them to be his joys and pains and sorrows, and yet he is not incapacitated thereby.

Major and Minor Initiations

In dealing with this question of the diversities of initiations it may be of value to the student to remember that the great moment in which a man passed out of the animal kingdom into the human, which is called in many occult textbooks the "moment of individualisation," was in itself one of the greatest of all initiations. Individualisation is the conscious apprehension by the self of its relation to all that constitutes the not-self, and in this great initiatory process, as in all the later ones, the awakening of consciousness is preceded by a period of gradual development; the awakening is instantaneous at the moment of self-realisation for the first time, and is always succeeded by another period of gradual evolution. This period of gradual evolution, in its turn leads up to a later crisis which is called Initiation.

In the one case, we have initiation into self-conscious existence, in the other, initiation into spiritual existence.

These realisations, or apprehended expansions of consciousness, are under natural law, and come in due course of time to every soul without exception. In a lesser degree they are undergone daily by every human being, as his mental grip of life and experience gradually grows, but they only become initiations into the wisdom (as differentiated from expansions of knowledge) when the knowledge gained is:

a. Consciously sought for.
b. Self-sacrificingly applied to life.
c. Willingly used in service for others.
d. Intelligently utilised on the side of evolution.

Only souls of a certain amount of experience and development do all these four things consistently and steadily, and thus transmute knowledge into wisdom, and experience into quality. The ordinary average man transmutes ignorance into knowledge, and experience into faculty.

It would be helpful if all of us pondered upon the difference between inherent quality and innate faculty; one is the very nature of buddhi, or wisdom, and the other of manas, or mind. The union of these two, through a man's conscious effort, results in a major initiation.

Results are brought about in two ways

First, by a man's own unaided effort, which leads him in due course of time to find his own centre of consciousness, to be guided and led by the inner ruler or Soul entirely, and to unravel, through strenuous effort and painful endeavour, the mystery of the universe, which is concealed in material substance energised by Fohat.

Secondly, by a man's efforts, supplemented by the intelligent loving co-operation of the Knowers of the race, the Masters of the Wisdom. In this case the process is quicker, for a man comes under instruction - should he so desire - and subsequently, when he has on his part provided the right conditions, there is placed at his disposal the knowledge and the help of Those Who have achieved. In order to avail himself of this help he has to work with the material of his own body, building right material into an ordered form, and has therefore to learn discrimination in the choice of matter, and to understand the laws of vibration and of construction. This entails the mastering, in some measure, of the laws that govern the Brahma and Vishnu aspects: it means a faculty of vibrating with atomic accuracy, and the development of the quality of attractiveness, which is the basis of the building, or Vishnu aspect.

He has to equip, also, his mental body so that it may be an explainer and transmitter, and not a hindering factor. He must likewise develop group activity, and learn to work in a co-ordinated manner with other units. These are the main things that a man must accomplish along the path of initiation, but when he has worked at them, he will find the Way, it will be made clear to him, and he will then join the ranks of the Knowers.

Another point to be remembered is that this effort to make people co-operate intelligently with the Hierarchy, and to train them to join the ranks of the Lodge, is, as earlier pointed out, a special effort (inaugurated in Atlantean days and continued to this time) made by the Hierarchy of the planet, and is very largely in the nature of an experiment.

The method whereby a man assumes conscious place in the body of a Heavenly Man differs in different planetary Schemes; the Heavenly Man, Who uses our planetary Scheme as His body of manifestation, chooses to work in this particular way during this particular period for His own specific purposes;

it is part of the process of vitalising one of His centres, and of linking up His heart centre with its connection in the head. As other of His centres are vitalised, and come into full activity, other methods of stimulating the cells in His body (the deva and human monads) may be followed, but for the present the cosmic Rod of Initiation, which is applied to a Heavenly Man, in much the same manner as the lesser rods are applied to man, is being utilised in such a way that it produces that specific stimulation which demonstrates in the activity of man on the Path of Probation and the Path of Initiation.

Therefore man must recognise the cyclic nature of initiation, and the place of the process in time and space. This is a special period of activity in the cycle of a Heavenly Man, and it works out on our planet as a vast period of trial or initiatory testing; it is, nevertheless, equally a period of vitalisation and of opportunity.

We must also endeavour to realise the fact that initiation may be seen taking place on the three planes in the three worlds, and the thought must ever be borne in mind of the relative value and place of the unit, or cell, in the body of a Heavenly Man.

The point must here be emphasised that the major initiations, or the initiations of manas, are those taken on the mental plane and in the causal body.

They mark the point in evolution where the unit recognizes in fact, and not only in theory, his identity with the divine Manasaputra in Whose body he has place.

Initiations can be taken on the physical plane, on the astral, and on the lower mental, but they are not considered major initiations, and are not a conscious, co-ordinated, unified stimulation that involves the whole man.

Three grades of initiations

A man, therefore, may take initiation on each plane:

but only those initiations which mark his transference from a lower four into a higher three are considered so in the real sense of the word, and only those in which a man transfers his consciousness from the lower quarternary into the triad are major initiations.

We have, therefore, three grades of initiations:

First - initiations in which a man transfers his consciousness from the lower four subplanes of the physical, astral, and mental planes respectively, into the higher three subplanes. When this is done upon the mental plane a man is then known technically as a disciple, an initiate, an adept. He uses then each of the three higher subplanes of the mental plane as a point from which to work his way completely out of the three worlds of human manifestation into the triad. Therefore it is apparent that what one might consider as lesser initiations can be taken on the physical and astral planes, in the conscious control of their three higher subplanes. These are true initiations, but do not make a man what is technically understood as a Master of the Wisdom. He is simply an adept of a lesser degree.

Secondly - initiations in which a man transfers his consciousness from plane to plane, instead of from subplane to subplane. Herein comes a point to be carefully recognised.

A true Master of the Wisdom has not only taken the lesser initiations referred to above, but has also taken the five steps involved in the conscious control of the five planes of human evolution.

It remains for him then to take the two final initiations which make him a Chohan of the sixth degree and a Buddha, before that control is extended to the remaining two planes of the solar system. It is obvious, therefore, that it is correct to speak of the seven initiations, yet it would be nevertheless equally correct to enumerate five, ten, or twelve initiations. The matter is complicated for occult students, owing to certain mysterious factors about which they can naturally know nothing, and which must remain to them, as yet, utterly incomprehensible. These factors are founded in the individuality of the Heavenly Man Himself, and involve such mysteries as His particular karma, the aim He may have in view for any particular cycle, and the turning of the attention of the cosmic ego of a Heavenly Man to His reflection, the evolving Heavenly Man of a solar system.

A further factor may also be found in certain periods of stimulation, and of increased vitalisation, such as a cosmic initiation produces. These outside effects naturally produce results in the units or cells in the body of the Heavenly Man, and lead often to events unforeseen and apparently inexplicable.

Thirdly - initiations in which a Heavenly Man may take either a minor or a major initiation, thereby involving His entire nature. For instance, when individualisation took place during the Lemurian, or the third root race, and the human family in this cycle definitely came into manifestation, it signified a major initiation for our Heavenly Man. The present stimulation in hierarchical effort is leading up to a lesser initiation. Each great cycle sees a major initiation of a Heavenly Man taken on one or other of the globes, and herein again complication lies, and much food for thought.

The coming in or passing out of any particular ray

To the three above points we might also briefly add that of the coming in, or passing out, of any particular ray. The little that can be said upon this point, which is one of the greatest difficulty, might be summed up in the following three statements:

(1) the initiations taken on the four minor rays rank not in equality with initiations taken upon the major three.

This is complicated somewhat by the fact that within the planetary Scheme, during cyclic evolution, a minor ray may be temporarily regarded as a major ray. For instance, at this particular time in our planetary Scheme, the seventh Ray of Ceremonial Law or Order is regarded as a major ray, being a ray of synthesis, and one on which the Mahachohan is blending His work.

(2) the first three initiations are taken upon the ray of the Soul, and link a man up with the great White Lodge; the last two are taken upon the ray of the Monad, and have a definite effect upon the Path for Service that will be chosen later by the Adept.

This statement must be linked up with that earlier made, which stated that the fifth initiation made a man a member of the Greater Lodge, or Brotherhood, on Sirius, being literally the first of the Sirian initiations. The fourth initiation is the synthesis of the Initiations of the Threshold in the Sirian Lodge.

(3) according to the ray on which initiation is taken, so very largely depends the subsequent path of service.

The Day of Opportunity in the west

The question might here be asked wherein this information is of value to the disciple? In illustration of this it would be wise if students would ponder the significance of the coming in of the present Ray of Ceremonial Law or Magic. It is the ray that deals with the building forces of nature, that concerns itself with the utilisation of the form intelligently by the life aspect. It is largely the ray of executive work, with the object of building, co-ordinating and producing cohesion in the four lower kingdoms of nature. It is distinguished largely by the energy which manifests itself in ritual, but this word ritual must not be narrowed down to its present use in connection with Masonic, or religious ritual. Its application is far wider than this, and includes the methods of organisation which are demonstrated in all civilised communities, such as in the world of commerce and of finance, and the great business organisations everywhere to be seen. Above all, its interest lies for us in the fact that it is the ray which brings opportunity to the occidental races, and through the medium of this life force of executive organisation, of government by rule and order, by rhythm and by ritual, will come the time wherein the occidental races (with their active, concrete mind, and their vast business capacity) can take initiation, an initiation, we must remember, upon a ray which is temporarily recognised as a major ray. A large number of the initiates and those who have obtained adeptship in the last cycle, have been orientals and those in Hindu bodies. This cycle has been dominated by the sixth ray, which is just passing out, and the two preceding. In the preservation of equilibrium the time now comes when a period of attainment by occidentals will be seen, and this upon a ray suited to their type of mind. It is interesting to note that the oriental type attains its objective through meditation, with a modicum of executive organisation and ritual, and that the occidental will achieve largely through the organisation which lower mind produces, and a type of meditation of which intense business concentration might be considered an illustration. The one-pointed application of the mind by a European or American business man might be regarded as a type of meditation. In the purification of motive lying back of this application will come, for the occidental, his day of opportunity.

By availing themselves of the present day of opportunity, and by conformity to the rules for treading the Path, will come to many in the West the chance to take these further steps. That opportunity will be found by the man who is ready in the place where he is, and among the familiar circumstances of his daily life. It will be found in attention to duty, in the surmounting of tests and trials, and in that inner adherence to the voice of the God within, which is the mark of every applicant for initiation. Initiation involves the very thing that is done from day to day by any who are consciously endeavoring to train themselves: the next point to be reached, and the next bit of work to be accomplished is pointed out by the Master (either the God within or a man's Master if he is consciously aware of Him) and the reason is given. Then the Teacher stands aside and watches the aspirant achieve. As He watches, He recognises points of crisis, where the application of a test will do one of two things, focalise and disperse any remaining unconquered evil - if that term might here be used - and demonstrate to the disciple both his weakness and his strength. In the great initiations, the same procedure can be seen, and the ability of the disciple to pass these greater tests and stages is dependent upon his ability to meet and surmount the daily lesser ones. "He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much," is an occult statement of fact, and should characterise the whole daily activity of the true aspirant; the "much" is surmounted and passed, because it is regarded simply as an intensification of the normal, and no initiate has ever passed the great test of initiation who has not accustomed himself to pass lesser tests every day of his life; tests then come to be regarded as normal, and are considered, when encountered, as part of the usual fabric of his life. When this attitude of mind is attained and held, there exists no surprise or possible defeat.