Sanctum Ritual for Plane 7
Salutes in omnibus punctis trianguli!
Beloved Members of the Esoteric Hierarchy:
You are now to be inducted into the mystical and metaphysical Seventh Plane of the Summum Bonum Degree. Here we shall begin to unify, to coordinate, the principles, concepts, and laws of the previous Planes through which you have studied. However, it is first appropriate that you cross a threshold into this Seventh Plane. This threshold shall consist of a mystical initiation.
In this manner, you shall have an emotional, psychic, and intellectual appreciation of what the Seventh Plane is to impart to you. Each of the two primary categories of our being is nourished by food necessary for their growth and development. The psychic and emotional category is fed by the symbolism and the rites of the initiations that awaken intuition and quicken the finer sentiments of self. The intellectual aspect of initiation nourishes the objective nature of self with its reason, imagination, and judgment. The two, then, are essential to the understanding and usefulness of this Seventh Plane you are now to enter.
Origin of Numbers
Let us now take some preparatory steps for the initiation. Have you ever given thought. to just how numbers came into existence? There are theories about it, of course. However, archaeologists have unearthed remnants of ancient primitive systems of numbering which have suggested to them how early man may have arrived at the idea of numerical arrangement.
Psychologically, quantity is the essential and basic idea underlying man's attempt to unify the diverse things which he experiences. Quantity, in terms of few and many, is an early perception of man. But all few and many are not the same in quantity. Any grouping of a thing, in and by itself, can seem to be a many. But how did man distinguish one many from a larger quantity? Shall we say, by its size? What rule, what element, did he decide
It is theoretically assumed that man used the number of his fingers, that is, ten, as the first determination of quantity. In other words, a quantity was a certain number of ten. These units of ten, or numbers, carne to be symbolized by dots. The dots were arranged in geometrical patterns; for example, numbers were described as triangular, square, or oblong.
The philosopher Pythagoras, born in Samos, Greece, in the sixth century B.C., is credited with being one of the first scientists. He was a mathematician of note, whose contributions to mathematics are well known. He had become acquainted with the early teachings of the Ionic school of philosophy. In his pursuit of knowledge, Pythagoras traveled quite extensively in the ancient world, especially when we take into consideration the slow mode of travel then available.
He journeyed to Egypt, as did others of the Greek philosophers. He studied extensively with the priests of the ancient mystery schools.
Subsequently, Pythagoras founded his own school of mystical philosophy in Crotona, Italy, c. 500 B.C. As said, his investigation of numbers was extensive, as was his inquiry into astronomy. Pythagoras is also renowned for the mathematical scale of music. It is recounted that he said, "All things are in numbers." This concept relates closely to the modern numerical relationship of the atomic scale.
Philolaus, a Greek writer of the period of Pythagoras, wrote of the latter's mystical symbolism as applied to numbers. Such symbolism was extensive, and there are those today who, unacquainted with the mystical concepts, are wont to consider them as mere meaningless fantasies. Though they are seemingly abstruse, they conceal a wealth of insight, especially if they are not accepted literally.
This form of concealment in the school of Pythagoras at Crotona was necessary, because his mystical and scientific ideas were in conflict with the old tradition-bound ideas and superstitions of the Greek populace. Therefore, Pythagoras and his followers were considered heretics--this attitude corresponding to a great extent to the prejudices and intolerance of the modern fundamentalist religious sects toward AMORC.
Pythagoras declared that odd and even numbers identify with the limited and the unlimited. The number one was said to be the point in space, which was a unit having "position and magnitude," and reason.
How can we construe this statement mystically? We, of course, can conjecture a meaning metaphysically and mystically. We can conceive that he meant the one is the All, the Absolute; however, it is potential with varied manifestations in its active state. Further, as to "reason," we can say that this alludes to the orderly process by which the one becomes many, yet does not lose its unity in doing so.
The numeral two was identified with time and opinion; three, with plane; and four, with justice, because it is the first square number. This, too, could be construed as justice because all sides of a square are a harmony of proportion. It is interesting to note that a square is often applied to moral and ethical conduct, meaning integrity, dependability, and conservatism.
The numeral seven was said to have efficacy and importance attributed to it by Pythagoras. Seven is the heptad and was declared, in his mystical writings, as the most sacred of all numbers, symbolizing Divine Power.
The seven was considered to be a number which cannot be generated by any number within the ten, or decade. Generation is another term for multiplication so that no two numbers within the decade (10) when multiplied can produce the seven. Likewise it cannot produce another number within the decade, for 7 by 1 is 7, but 7 by 2 is 14, a number outside of the sacred decade.
Seven has played a prominent part in history, as applied to various natural phenomena, such as the seven first observed planets, the seven days of the week, and so on. "Seven was also important because four sevens are twenty-eight, the second perfect number in the (Pythagorean) numeral series. " It is also the division of the lunar month into four squares of seven days, or twenty-eight.
Periods of Life
In our Initiation Ritual for this Degree of the Seventh Plane, you are to synthesize the self. You are to enter into an exercise in which you are to give thought to, and derive insight from, six periods of your life. The concluding or seventh period will then be the synthesis, the unifying of the values of the other six periods.
This will result in a mystical enlightenment as to the principal lessons and experiences of each of the periods of life. It will constitute an innate review of your self as it now is, and the direction it should go, regardless of your present mode of living. That does not mean a revolution in your living, but in your thinking and adjustment in life.
The method of this Initiation, its concept, must not be construed as a form of prognostication. It is not prediction. Rather, it is a deep penetration into the self--its habits, practices, ideals, objectives, and knowledge. It is the awakening of your personal development and contains a potential for greater happiness. It is you, however, who must make the conclusion, the synthesis; arrive at the revealed judgment--no one else.
We have here stated you will consider six periods of your life, then bring them into a synthesis, a unity of understanding. However, for some persons, they may not have yet reached that period in their life. Nevertheless, the member may cogitate on the meaning of that period of life that he or she is to approach. The same may be said of a certain earlier period of which you have no recollection. But reflecting upon its significance, its relation to the progression of your life, is likewise essential in leading up to the final seventh period, the
You will now obtain a piece of writing paper or a pad, and a pencil, and have them available. As you meditate on each of the periods, you will kindly write down the thoughts that come to you with respect to that event or period. You will see that the first period is known as birth. For example, what does birth mean to you? Or you might say; "Why am I he.re?" (Of course, the above-mentioned thoughts may not be your own; they are merely an example.) Then, write down what does come to you on your pad or paper. Keep such word or words, related to each of the six periods, separate from each other.
The following are the six periods:
1ST - BIRTH
What does it mean to you?
Do you believe it had a purpose?
What comes to your mind in regard to this as you think about it?
2ND - INFANCY
What vague or definite impression can you recall?
What emotions does thought about infancy arouse, or that may seem to come through to you?
3RD - CHILDHOOD
What incidents are outstanding for that period?
What emotions are related to them?
What likes or dislikes can you recall, and why?
4TH - YOUTH
What did you imagine as the real value of life when you were in this period?
What did you personally consider as the right and wrong actions in life?
What was your highest goal?
5TH - MATURITY
Have you a personal philosophy, and from what does it arise?
Is it an outgrowth or a departure from the ideas and thoughts of the past periods?
6TH - ADVANCED YEARS
If you have reached this period, do you feel there is a missing tie, a link with the past five periods?
Perhaps something should have been brought to the fore of self?
Or, if you are not as yet of this age, what changes would you like to make in your thinking, beliefs, and actions?
What self-image would you like to attain?
Now we come to the mystical and practical principle of the numeral seven. It is the synthesis, the combining of the ideas, the conclusions you have reached regarding the other six periods. Each of us has, at one time or another, experienced that intuitive flash into consciousness of an idea of great perspicuity. Its clarity was like piercing darkness with an intense light. Such usually brought an explanation about some previous puzzling question or problem which reasoning had failed to do; or perhaps it brought forth a virgin idea, one brilliant in its self-evidence. Such an experience may have amazed you at the time. Perhaps you thought, "Whence came such knowledge?" To call it intuition is but giving a name to a phenomenon, but not explaining it. For the purpose of this Initiation, let us again briefly explain the nature of intuition.
Soul not Separate
The entity which man has long thought to be the most infinite, ethereal, and divine of his being, he has termed soul. But soul is not a detached, that is, a separate, substance implanted in man, though many theologies expound such a concept. Mystically, the soul's essence in all mankind is an infusion of the Universal Consciousness which permeates the whole Cosrn1c--or you may term it "the consciousness of the Cosmic."
This consciousness is the self-awareness of the Cosmos that constitutes the direction of all of its phenomena, its manifestations. Life Force, with its seeming innate intelligence manifesting in an order of development, is an attribute of this Universal Consciousness. It gives rise to the experience of the personal self-awareness and the idea of soul.
More simply, we experience on various levels and responses of consciousness, different images, ideas, and impressions by which we identify this Universal Consciousness which, carried by Life Force, flows through our being. Our higher emotional response to it, such as the sense of righteousness, morality, and a feeling of oneness, or unity, with all existence, is what we designate as the qualities.
of soul. Our interpretation and our response to this exalted feeling, the way we act in accordance with it, is our personality or, as we Rosicrucians term it, the soul personality. A lower order or plane of the same Universal Consciousness, we designate as the self. It is the awareness we have of our own existence, apart from all else.
Therefore, this directing consciousness of the Cosmic, we may call intelligence: yet it far exceeds common human intelligence. It filters down through the octaves of human consciousness.
It, then, can be the ultimate judge of our human decisions and activity. Let us understand, however, that it does not live our life for us. It does not determine the absolute-course of our life. It is not fatalism. We have been endowed with mental and other faculties to mold and orient our lives.
Rather, we should realize that this Universal Cosmic Consciousness functions, in a sense, as a judge. It passes on the rectitude of our thoughts. It may make us aware that what we are thinking or planning to do is adverse to our welfare. We may ordinarily say that it is conscience talking to us, which is just another word for the same intelligence. Then again, it may enlighten us on ways and means for a constructive, rational action. But it does not impose or force us to act in a certain way. It is not compelling in its motivation, except by the appealing rationale of what it relates to us.
This enlightenment, then, is what we commonly know or refer to as intuition. Intuition takes our existing knowledge that we have acqu1red objectively and through our subjective processes of reasoning and imagination, and our experience, and evaluates it as to its true value, therefore impressing us as to right or wrong, and as to what actions or thoughts are beneficial or not.
This intuition does not completely replace our reason with which we have been endowed. We must exercise reason and our will in confronting the events of everyday life. Intuition, in relation to those thoughts and acts on our part, will caution or inspire, depending. on the course we plan to take.
It would seem from this that man should be invincible in his contest with the vicissitudes of daily life. But intuition is most often thwarted by man. Men commonly confine themselves to the objective and subjective levels of the Universal Consciousness within them. The higher judgment of what is called the subconscious, through which the intuition functions, is rarely consulted by them, even if its impressions are recognized.
With most individuals, this Higher Mind, as we may also call it, can only come through in contemplation moments of relaxation, in meditation, or when we are not confining our attention exclusively to the perception and concentration of the objective and subjective phases of consciousness. Just as one may appeal his litigation to a higher court, so one also may take his problems or his questions for further enlightenment to the higher court of intuition. That is what we shall now do in this Initiation of Plane Seven.
Arrangement of the Sanctum
STEP ONE: Arrange three candles in triangular formation on your sanctum altar (table or stand). Then, let a point of the triangular formation face you in this manner:
STEP TWO: (Keep the lights in your room low.) Light the candle to your left. While seated, refer again to the first and second periods of your life indicated in this monograph. Read the word or words you wrote representing them. Then, while looking at the flame of the candle facing you, for at least a minute or so, think of those words in mind being transferred to the higher level of your consciousness--the single candle before you depicting the greater illumination which resides in the higher consciousness.
STEP THREE: Light the candle now on the right side. Then read what you have written for periods three and four of the life-span indicated in this monograph. With those words in mind, then again gaze for a few seconds at the candle. Next, close your eyes and think of the candlelight as a symbolic ladder by which your thoughts can ascend to the higher judgment of the Cosmic Intelligence within you.
STEP FOUR: Now light the candle directly in front of you, and face it. Refer now to the periods of life numbers five and six. Gaze at the candle again for as many seconds as you choose. Then contemplate the words that you have written for periods five and six.
FINAL STEP: At this point, extinguish all the candles except the one that faces you. We now apply the mystical and psychological principle of the number seven; that is, the synthesis, the combining, the unity, the merging of all the thoughts you mentally associated with the other previous six periods. In other words, sit quietly, gazing at the lighted candle. Inwardly ask your intuitive judgment to integrate the other thoughts into a definite symbol, or a single word, -with complete meaning to you which embodies all of the previous ideas, and that such may be a key to the unfoldment of your full self--that which has not yet been experienced by you and which adds to your previous concepts.
Close your eyes for a minute or two, or longer if you wish, and await what infusion of thought may penetrate from the depth of your psychic consciousness the exalted Cosmic judgment we all possess. If it is truly intuitive, it will have that conviction of being self-evident.
However, you may be surprised by what may come to your consciousness. It may appear quite unrelated to any experience or thought previously had. Do not try to reason its meaning. The necessary clarity, enlightenment, will come, if not now, at a later time--just as you have had at times that sudden flash of intuition in the past. Only now, you are using a mechanism, a technique to attempt to bring it about by your will, by your desire to submit and refer to its judgment. When you finally receive it, you will recognize it as the synthesis, the harmonious unity of your previous thoughts--the true symbolic number seven. (Extinguish candle.)
If one tries to adapt his or her life to that intuitive judgment, the result will be evident in greater personal capacity of accomplishment. It does not mean an immediate transformation of your way of living, or of your inner life and the values which you now attribute to your personal existence. It can, however, gradually bring to the fore a more extensive vision and creative motivation for greater accomplishment in your everyday world--an accomplishment that can provide a personal Peace Profound. I am sure you realize that creativity is related not only to imagination but to intuition as well. The intuitive idea is the unreasoned light of that illumined mind.
This Seventh Plane Initiation can be repeated, as it is not always rewarding the first time because sometimes the individual's state of mind is not compatible with the requirements of the Initiation. However, it must be stated that you must not compel but rather submit to the Cosmic laws involved. You can ask and make yourself receptive, but you cannot demand.
The "mystical seven," which is merely a symbolic term, will be experienced intuitively as either a word, a vowel sound, or a mental image that may result in the solution of a problem or suggest a goal or purpose, if such is in accord with your higher moral and ethical sense.
In conclusion, a further comment must be made in connection with the Initiation. We are not here concerned with the so-called supernatural. To Rosicrucians, to thinkers, there is no supernatural. There is only the universal Cosmic phenomena, a keyboard of manifestations that are generally known as nature. Some of nature's phenomena are more extensive in the power which they exhibit, yet all of them are related to this unified Cosmic Whole. It is only because of his ignorance of certain natural laws that man has attributed to them that which he terms the supernatural. There is nothing beyond the spectrum of oneness of the Infinite Cosmic Intelligence.
This Initiation, Fratres and Sorores, will be followed by the first monograph of Plane Seven.
Sincerely and fraternally,
YOUR CLASS MASTER