This is a follow up to my previous blog post, Golden Dawn Manuscripts and Where To Find Them. Your Humble Blogmaster, and basset-hound of all things GD, has found yet another cache of original Golden Dawn manuscripts, i.e. in addition to the one which I said its owner did not want publicised. This new cache, however, is reasonably accessible to the public – it is also at a venue that I happened to mention in passing the last time – the Library and Museum of Freemasonry at Freemasons’ Hall in London.
It hasn’t been hidden away at Great Queen Street all this time, it was actually purchased by them in 2008 (I would not be surprised one bit if it is Bob Gilbert’s old hoard). It has only just been catalogued in the past few weeks – i.e. since I first wrote my original blog post. Most of the papers, from my initial perusal, appear to be from the collection of the Reverend Ayton, who was amongst the very first members of Isis Urania temple. Ayton, an alchemist who had briefly met Eliphas Levi many years earlier, became a 5=6 in the original order, and stayed with Isis Urania after the split, becoming a member of Waite’s Holy Order of the Golden Dawn.
As you might expect, the contents of most of the documents have found their way into the public light by other routes, although there are a few rare gems. By way of example, I present the following ritual, which to my knowledge has never before been published. There is a saying in the Golden Dawn – “Invoke the Highest, First.” In this spirit I present the following: the first goody to be revealed from the archives at Great Queen Street is an invocation of the Highest, a ritual of pure Theurgy. It is a particular method of vibrating “Adonai Ha-Aretz” which was distributed to advanced members of the 5=6 Adeptus Minor grade. NB: This is substantially different from the method mentioned in Regardie’s “The Golden Dawn” ! It is, however, similar to a document in the other archives to which I have had access.
Unfortunately I don’t have a facsimile of the ritual. When I asked about making a copy, I was informed that they don’t do photocopies – as this damages the books. They can arrange to make digital photographs of the pages, but this is charged at the rate £2.50 per image (+ £1 for burning it to CD-Rom). Hence the ritual I present below, which was two pages long, would have cost £6 (I didn’t have any change on me at the time when I had a look at it). NB the National Library of Ireland charges similar rates for making facsimiles, which is why Yeats’ papers are not more widely known.
Hence I will have to rely on my notes which I made.
Pay attention – it’s the Scholarly Bit!
The ritual is hand-written on both sides of a sheet of foolscap octavo, which on the front bears a hexagram device in the top-left corner. It is illustrated through at key points in the text with pencil line-drawings. It is bound with other papers of different handwriting in a volume called “Grade of Geburah etc,” which despite its name contains just two documents relating to the 6=5 of the Holy Order of the Golden Dawn, whilst the rest are mainly Adeptus Minor documents of the original order, along with some miscellaneous items.
The hand-writing itself is very neat. I was not able to make a comparison with any known handwriting samples to establish precisely who copied or wrote it. The only thing I can definitely say that it wasn’t Wynn Westcott! Doubtless it would be possible to work out who did it simply by spending more time studying it.
The Ritual Itself
First clear the room with the Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram.
Stand in the form of a cross. Say I N R I
YOD NUN RESH YOD*
Alex’ note: in the original this is written in Hebrew, right to left.
Virgo Isis Mighty Mother
Scorpio Apophis and Typhon Destroyer
Sol Osiris slain and risen
Isis Apophis Osiris. IAO
The Sign of Osiris Slain.
L the sign of Isis mourning.
V the sign of Apophis and Typhon.
X the sign of Osiris Risen.
Alex’ note: the above lines are each accompanied by a miniature line drawing demonstrating the signs of an Adeptus Minor. Think of a stick-figure wearing a tau-robe and you get the idea. Interestingly, the “L” is not a straight-armed “L” as given in Regardie’s books, but more of a crooked-arm swastika-like arrangement demonstrated by Crowley in the plates that accompany “Magick in Theory and Practice.” I.e. from the sign of Osiris slain, turn the right arm straight up at the elbow, and the left arm straight down from the left elbow.
L V X Lux the light of the Cross.
Trace the Rose-Cross in the four cardinal points.
Alex’ note: Here there is an illustration of the Rose-cross. Note that the ritual clearly says the “four cardinal points,” not the cross-quarters – thus differentiating it from the more well-known Rose Cross Ritual. Thence over to page 2…
Formulate whilst facing the East before you in flashing white brilliance:
Alex’ note: The word Formulate conceals far more than it reveals. As a magician I would guess this means vibrate “Adonai Ha-Aretz” by the vibratory formula of the Middle Pillar 16 times – once for each letter of the cruciform version of the divine name. However – and note well – this is not indicated in the text.
Attach yourself to your Kether until you see brilliant white light.
Alex’ note: The ritual ends with a sketch of an Adept standing in the sign of Osiris slain, a globe of brilliance immediately above his head (i.e. Kether).