Hermetic Masonry – Part 1: Initiatic Symbolism

 

Introduction

The purpose of this class is to review the fundamental concepts of Gnostic Kabbalah that were given in the Tarot & Kabbalah in the Gnostic Tradition class. This class (Hermetic Masonry – Part 1) could also be called “Combinations of the Arcana” as well as “The Mystery Religions of the Ancients 2: The Mysteries and their Symbolism”.

We are going to be building off of the Kabbalistic studies of the Hebrew Letters (see above) since this will allow us to understand a number of symbolic representations. If one studies Masonry with an Gnostic approach, then it becomes quite clear that it is Kabbalistic and Alchemical in its symbolism. The purpose of this Course is to emphasize this and to give it a definite explanation.

We will begin by studying the Combinations of Hebrew Letters (or Combinations of Arcana) and then we will enter into quotations directly from Masonic sources. Next, we will look at the “Occult Masonry” of Huiracocha and Samael Aun Weor, followed by a few more Combinations of Arcana. Finally, we will delve into how one acquires Degrees internally and passes the Ordeals of Initiation (“Temptation is Fire, but triumph over temptation is Light…”)

We will try to briefly explain this esoteric process below

 

Understanding the Gnostic perspective on the Great Work

Gnosis shows us that there are definite steps or stages of the path to return to the Absolute. In order to understand them better, let’s look at what Samael Aun Weor says in regards to the path:

“…if we wish to create our interior Universe, then we must create as God did when he created the Universe.”

-paraphrase from Ch.13 of Treatise of Sexual Alchemy

In our courses on Gnostic Kabbalah, we have seen the way Divinity creates from top-down in the Sephirothic Tree. Now we must look at how the human being must create through that same tree:

Creation of the External Universe
(Top-Down)
The Work to Create the Internal Universe
(Bottom-Up)
 1. Kether (First Logos)
 2. Chokmah (Second Logos)
 3. Binah (Third Logos)
 4. Chesed or Gedulah (World of the Inner Being or Innermost)
 5. Geburah (World of Intuition)
 6. Tiphereth (Causal World)
 7. Netzach (Mental World)
 8. Hod (Astral World)
 9. Yesod/Jesod (Etheric or Vital World)
10. Malkuth (Physical World)
10. Kether (First Logos)
9. Chokmah (Second Logos)
8. Binah (Third Logos)
7. Chesed or Gedulah (World of the Inner Being or Innermost)
6. Geburah (World of Intuition)
5. Tiphereth (Causal World)
4. Netzach (Mental World)
3. Hod (Astral World)
2. Yesod/Jesod (Etheric or Vital World)
1. Malkuth (Physical World)

The Work to Create our Internal Universe begins with Malkuth, the Physical World, with our human organism (the so-called “3-Story Factory” mentioned by Gurdjieff, Ouspensky and Nicoll). The first phase of the creative aspect of the Work is to create and sustain the Solar Bodies (or Superior Existential Bodies of the Being). This can be understood as moving ourselves from Malkuth into Tiphereth:

  5. Tiphereth (Causal World)
  4. Netzach (Mental World)
  3. Hod (Astral World)
  2. Yesod/Jesod (Etheric or Vital World)
  1. Malkuth (Physical World)

Since we already have the first 2 bodies, then we must learn to work properly with the Cubic Stone of Yesod (the Philosophical Stone) in order to acquire:
      1st the Solar Astral Body,
      2nd the Solar Mental Body, and
      3rd the Solar Causal Body.

We must acquire these Vehicles before we are able to pass on to the next phase of the Work. These Solar Bodies correspond to the first 3 Degrees of Hermetic Masonry: the work to acquire the Solar Astral is “Apprentice” (1st Degree), that of the Solar Mental is “Companion” – sometimes also called “Fellow” (2nd Degree), and that of the Solar Causal is “Master” (3rd Degree).

“It is one thing to be a Master and another, certainly much different, to achieve perfection in Mastery.”

-paraphrase from Ch.29 of The Three Mountains

We must learn to work with “the Fire and the Water”, “the Sun and the Moon”, “the Mercury and the Sulfur”, in order to acquire Degrees. These symbols refer to the practice of Alchemy…

 

Esotericism, Initiatic Symbolism and Classical Music

Some of very interesting aspects of the Esoteric Teachings can be discovered in famous literature and music from various cultures and times periods. In the Ancient Mysteries, drama was used to convey information to the 3 Brains (Intellectual, Motor and Action) of the Initiates.

We recommend that you listen to, watch, or go see, two excellent Operas that will certainly help in your understanding of Initiatic Symbolism: Mozart’s Magic Flute and Wagner’s Parsival.

 

Gnostic Esotericism and the Hermetic Masonry Hidden in Wagner’s Parsival

Have you heard of the Knights of the Round Table and the Legend of the Holy Grail? Richard Wagner (the German Composer) wrote the marvelous Opera Parsifal wherein we find tremendous esoteric symbolism related to these themes…

The Opera Parsifal was based on the 13th century German book Parzival by Wolfram von Eschenbach (which was based on the unfinished 12th century French romance Perceval, le Conte du Graal by Chrétien de Troyes).

Master Samael Aun Weor wrote a book, “Parsifal Unveiled”, in which he describes the mysteries hidden within Wagner’s great opera:

“Let us now, with great prudence, unveil PARSIFAL, the culminating work of WAGNER. May the Gods assist us..! The Muses know very well that among the Wagnerian dramas, this diamantine work of this great Master is something special and exceptional. In this opera, the verb of the Master delectably flows as a golden river under the thick jungle of the sun.

…It is evident by all means and with complete meridian clarity that WAGNER was a great Initiate, an insightful Esotericist, an authentic Illuminated One… Science, philosophy, art and religion exist within Wagner’s Parsifal… A new Doctor Faust   was endowed in this great musician. It seems that he had scrutinized very ancient religious scriptures…

What is the most astonishing to me is something tremendous… I am emphatically referring to INNATE MAGIC: Where did he get it? Who taught it to him? In which school did he learn it? Next, the development of this drama comes with a deep TRADITIONAL MAGISM…, Major Mysteries that are not understood by the vulgar.

To penetrate within this archaic occultism, to delve within the Christic Mysteries, to examine the Esoteric Buddhism contained within this Wagnerian gospel is precisely what we attempt in this book. Obviously, many Pseudo-Esotericists will become scandalized with our revelations.

It is unquestionable that many sincerely mistaken ones filled with good intentions, while rending their vestures with indignation, will utter horrible things against us, the Gnostics… Indeed, this is because Parsifal always provokes tremendous discussions; it is obvious that the children of darkness abhor the light.

Let us remember that Parsifal was shown in the best theaters of Europe on January 1, 1914. This invites us to meditate. The year 1914 will always be a memorable date among the remarkable dates of this humanity, because of the explosion of the First World War and the simultaneous debut of Parsifal in all the civilized world.

It is unquestionable that if Wagner would not have prohibited the presentation of his Magnus Opus outside of Bayreuth, then, the world would have known it before 1914. Fortunately, and for the sake of the Great Work of the Father, the willpower of this immortal musician could not be fulfilled, because the international treatises related to copyrights were above it.

Ostensibly, in Germany, the legal protection of this type of works concludes thirty years after the death of its author. Since the already mentioned thirty years were accomplished on January 1, 1914, the copyright of Parsifal was nullified and since then, the world could know this majestic work.

1914 had a mysterious connubiality… Parsifal and the First World War. It is indubitable that the Wagnerian gospel resounds in the fields of battle; it is catastrophic, terrific; it gloriously shines amidst the tempest of all exclusiveness…”

-paraphrase from Ch.1 of Parsifal Unveiled

 

 

“The sacred Scriptures state: “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” [Matthew: 7:7]

It is written with burning coals in the book of all mysteries that the Lanu or Disciple must question, if the Intimate Self-Realization is what one truly longs for with all the force of one’s soul.

The Divine Ones and the Humans know very well that Parsifal as Chela or Disciple did not become the king of the Grail because he did not ask for an explanation regarding the reason for Amfortas’ agony.

The bread and wine of the transubstantiation are distributed on the sacred tables. The brethren seat themselves at the feast. Parsifal, however, remains standing apart, in a state of mystical ecstasy. Finally, his delectable and ineffable exaltation ceases upon hearing Amfortas’ cries of agony.

Gurnemanz, the ancient Hierophant believes Parsifal is unconscious and even pitiless to what is happening; therefore, he comes up to him with a severe attitude and pushes him out of the sacred precinct…

In very seriously judging the brilliant theme of this royal Wagnerian Drama, glorious as no other, we can discover (not without a certain mystical amazement) the three esoteric classic degrees: Apprentices, Companions [or Fellows] and Masters.

The adolescent from the first part of the drama still does not know anything about the mansion of delights and the corner of love with its dangerously blossoming, lovely women; nor does he know anything about Kundry, Herodias, Gundryggia, the exquisitely sinful one. He is still the Apprentice of Occult Masonry…

The Parsifal of the second part is the man who courageously descends into the Ninth Dantesque Circle; he is the Aspirant who works in the Flaming Forge of Vulcan, the Companion.

The Hero of the third part is the Master who returns to the Temple after having suffered too much.

The boy of the first part does not even have his Consciousness awakened. He is just one of those many pilgrims who travel very secretly throughout the obscure jungles of life, in search of a compassionate traveler who can have, among his treasures, a precious balm in order to heal his painful heart…

The joy is very great when he finds on his suffering path the ancient hermit Gurnemanz, who serves him as Guide or Guru…

The Parsifal of the second part is the ascetic who consciously descends into the Infernal Worlds. He is the man who works in the Forge of the Cyclops, the Mystic who defeats the seven priestesses of temptation…

The devotee from the third part is the Adept dressed with the Wedding Garment of the soul (marvelous synthesis of the solar bodies) within which is contained Superior Emotion, Authentic Mind and Conscious Willpower.

The triumphant return into the Temple of the Grail is the principal characteristic of the Parsifal from the third part. The Anchorite returns into the sacred precinct, grasping with his dexterous hand the formidable Holy Pike, the blessed Spear…”

-paraphrase from Ch.25 of Parsifal Unveiled

 

 

 

– = Read the FIRST PART = –