Related Essay(s):Lecture for Degree XXIV
2. "The Initiate could aspire to the favours of the Gods only because and while he respected the rights of society and those of humanity." — Albert Pike.
a. Distinguish between the rights of humanity and those of society.
b. What can you deduce about the rights of an individual person?
c. How might your conclusions be reflected in a system of social justice?
3. "All initiation is but introductory to the great change of death." — Albert Pike
a. What are your thoughts and feelings about the death of your own body?
b. Are you satisfied with cultural treatment of death in your society?
c. Discuss the likelihood that the emphasis on death in initiatory rituals has been influential in the misclassification of initiatory theatres as "burial chambers".
4. "The human soul is itself a God within the mind, capable through its own power of rivalling the canonisation of the Hero, of making itself immortal by the practice of the good, and the contemplation of the beautiful and true." — Albert Pike
Contemplate this statement. What thoughts and emotions does it awaken within you? Do you feel comfortable with it as a foundation for a personal philosophy?
5. "These two divinities, the active and passive principles of the Universe, were commonly symbolised by the generative parts of man and woman, to which in remote ages no idea of indecency was attached: the Phallus and Cleis, emblems of generation and production, and which, as such, appeared in the mysteries." — Albert Pike
a. Why do you think the subject of sex is so often surrounded by strict taboos?
b. Can you suggest any psychological explanation for the fact that the sex drive fequently overcomes any consideration for bodily welfare?
c. How easy do you find it to think of birth and death as reference points in a cycle of personal development?
c. Compare the symbolism of the Christian Cross with that of the Easter Egg. Which carries the richer meaning for you?