Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia
Grade V – College of Adepts - Adeptus Minor
The College of Adepts meets in chamber called the Vault of the Adepts.
The three Grades of Adeptship are conferred by the Most Worthy Supreme Magus, or by a Chief Adept.
The Ceremony of Reception into each grade of Adeptship is performed by three Officers; an Inductor, in the East; an Expositor, in the West; and a Conductor beside the Portal.
A Chief Adept of a Province may appoint any Frater to act as Inductor or Expositor for the purpose of conferring a Second Order Grade, but the Frater so appointed must be of a higher Grade than that being conferred.
Small pedestals should be provided for the Inductor and Expositor: on these pedestals an illuminated transparency of a red cross should be placed, that of the Expositor being optional.
Progress into and within the Second Order rests with the Chief Adept, who should receive the recommendation of the College through his Provincial Secretary. Colleges are not empowered in their warrants to confer Adept Grades.
The Provincial Secretary is responsible for obtaining the approval of the Chief Adept for advancement to Grades V, VI and VII of all Fratres in the Province, and for arranging the ceremonies (which will normally be held before the meeting of a College), and for summoning the Candidate to attend.
Summonses should be sent to all eligible Fratres in the Province, but for convenience these summonses may, if time permits, be passed to College Secretaries to send out with the College summonses. The Provincial Secretary, under the direction of the Chief Adept, arranges the Officers for the Adept ceremonies, and ensures that they are informed in advance.
The Provincial Secretary is responsible for submitting the Return (Form A/C), which he must sign to confirm that the Grade(s) have been conferred, to the Secretary-General, immediately after Adept Grades have been conferred, so that Certificates can be made out, for administrative convenience he may arrange with the College Secretary to submit these returns with the College returns. The appropriate fee should be sent by the College Secretary for the Second-Order Grades with the Form A/C, duly signed by the Provincial Secretary, for the Candidate’s Grade V.
The Form A/C must show who officiated in each ceremony Minutes – Minutes should be kept of all Adept Grades worked in the Province, and these should be read and confirmed immediately after opening on the next occasion Adept Grades are worked in the Province, even though this may be at some other venue.
Furniture - The Provincial Secretary, or, if one has been appointed, the Provincial D.C., should see that the following arrangements are complied with, as far as is practicable, for each Adept ceremony. Seats to be arranged in the form of a seven-sided figure, in the centre the Pastos (failing which a black cloth folded to shape and placed on the floor), on the Pastos, from West to East, the Holy Bible (open at St John Chapter 1), small ‘in memoriam' plate, circular altarplate (Grade VII only), sanctuary lamp or candle. Pedestals for the Inductor in the East and Expositor in the West, each bearing a light enclosed by a transparency, so that the Illuminated Cross is seen by the Candidate, and the officer has the benefit of a dim light.
NOTE: ensure that the Fratres do not move the chairs from the sevensided shape, and that they understand the significance of the form of the Vault.
The Candidates should be veiled, and not blindfolded in the Adept Grades.
Prologue – If the Prologue is to be given in Grade V, it is necessary that there is a banner, or diagram, of the Tree of Life outside the Portal of the Vault and that it can be illuminated during the explanation, the anteroom should otherwise be in darkness.
Lighting - In Grade V, if it is the custom to show the Candidates a diagram of the Tetractys to enable them to follow the explanation in the Lecture, sufficient light should be given for them to see this diagram while this part of the lecture is given, or a transparency of a Tetractys may be used. With these exceptions (and the lights in the transparencies on the two pedestals and the Sanctuary Lamp on the Pastos) there should be no lights in evidence during the Adept ceremonies, but if available, a very dim blue light may be used throughout, to facilitate movements.
Formalities - Before opening the Vault of Adepts the Inductor should satisfy himself by enquiry, that nobody is present who has not taken the Grade about to be worked. He should then call upon the Provincial Secretary to read from Form A/C the names of the Candidates for the Grade, and to confirm that the form bears the signature of the Chief Adept (or Supreme Magus) approving the Candidate.
Note. When in College, Adepti Minores should wear the Jewel of the Rosicrucian Society suspended by a yellow ribbon upon which is the number V, and in addition may wear the Ancient
Jewel of an Adept as described in the Lecture.
In this Grade the Vault is prepared by placing upon the floor a pastos, with its head near the centre of the Vault and its foot to the East. The Sacred Volume is placed on the pastos at the head, and a lighted lamp at the foot: a memorial tablet maybe placed on the pastos, and if this is done it should be placed so that it can be read from the East. The chairs should, as far as is practicable, be set out to form a seven-sided shape, with apex to the East. The Vault is but dimly lit, in the anteroom, by the entrance to the Temple, should be a banner or chart of the Kabalistic Tree of Life, with a light to illuminate it during the explanation (This will apply only if the Prologue is to be given).
The candidate must be a Philosophus, Grade IV and must wear the Jewel of the First Order of the Society. He must have been a member of the Society for not less than four years: if, exceptionally, it is desired to permit advancement at an earlier date, a Dispensation from the Supreme Magus must have been obtained from the Secretary General before the ceremony can take place.
Whenever possible, although this may be varied by permission of the S.M or a Chief Adept, there should be not more than two Candidates for Grade V.
In the anteroom the Acolyte prepares the Candidate and instructs him how to knock for admission. (One and Four).
Ind.: Right (or Very) Worthy Conductor, please confirm that all within the Vault are of Grade V or higher.
Con.: Right Worthy Inductor, I confirm this.
Ind.: Very worthy Fratres, I open this College of Adepts by giving five and one knocks and with the Mystic Word Thanatos.
The knocks are repeated by the Expositor and Conductor: the Conductor opens the Sacred Volume.
The Minutes of the last Adept Grade meeting in the Province should be read at this point, unless they have already been read in Grade VII or Grade VI: the Ind. then calls on the Prov. Sec. to produce and read the Form bearing the authority of the Supreme Magus or Chief Adept for the advancement of the Candidate.
Ceremony of Reception
The Candidate knocks as a Philosophus, one and four.
Cond.: Right Worthy Inductor, A Frater Philosophus seeks admission to our Vault.
The following should be audible for all within the Vault.
Ind.: I will accompany you and see if he is one of the chosen.
Ind. follows Conductor to the Ante-room and stands in the doorway
Ind.: Who are you, and what do you seek?
Can., (prompted by Con.): I am a Philosophus and I seek Adeptship; if I am received I will never break my covenant with you.
The Banner is illuminated, and the Ind. indicates with a pointer or by hand the points marked.
Ind.: Worthy Frater Philosophus, for four years and upwards you have been seeking the path of the return of the Soul to its Source. In the symbolism of the Kabalistic Tree of Life you started as a Zelator in the Sephira of Malkuth and, in subsequent Grades you have progressed to the Sephiroth of Yesod, Hod and Netzach. Thus prepared you have returned to Yesod on the middle pillar but now you are looking upwards towards the Supernals. Before you is the path of Ayin which leads to the Sephira of Tiphareth, the Christ-centre, while beyond is the hidden Sephira of Daath where all things are dissolved into one.
Across the Path of Ayin is the Veil of Paroketh, but my Frater, this Veil has been rent asunder by the Redeemer of Mankind and the way laid open for all who follow Him. Are you, my Frater, in all humility, resolved to follow on that path and dedicate yourself to the Christ-life?
The Candidate answers.
Beyond this portal is the Vault of the Adepts; it is a sanctuary of seven sides and seven angles wherein you may learn to travel the Path. No earthly sun can shine therein, but the glimmering ray of a sanctuary lamp serves to make darkness visible. You seek to be an Adept and must learn that the central maxim of the true life of Adeptship is Jeheshua Mihi Omnia – Jesus is all things to me.
You may now enter the Vault but your eyes are still veiled and a Conductor must lead you.
The light on the banner is extinguished and the Ind. returns to the Vault.
Ind.: V.W. Fratres, the candidate has proved himself one of the chosen and the Conductor will admit him.
The Conductor places a black veil over the head of the Candidate, leads him into the Vault and stops before the Expositor
The Conductor then places his right forefinger upon the lips of the Candidate, saying:
Con.: Speak not, but follow me.
The Conductor leads the Candidate once round the Vault in profound silence, and as they pass the Inductor the Conductor utters the word of the 4th Grade, Theosophia.
The Inductor answers: Pass, Theosophia.
Then they move onward and stop in the West facing the Expositor
The Conductor places his right forefinger on the lips of the Candidate saying:
Con.: I remove the seal of Silence.
Exp.: Frater, who art thou?
Con. (for Can.): I am one who mourns in darkness because of the King of Terrors; my days are compassed with griefs, and my nights with sorrows. Show me the dawn of that Celestial light, which crowns with joy the perfect man.
Exp.: Are you a Christian?
Can.: I am
Exp.: Enough; watch and pray till the True light shineth.
The Conductor places the Candidate at the head of the pastos facing the East.
Ind.: Worthy Frater, It was the practice of a distinguished Sage to enjoin strict silence upon all who sought instruction in the mysteries. The disciples of this great Teacher were not permitted to speak for a certain number of years, when the seal of silence was removed by the potent voice which had imposed it. This was a sure test of the Candidate’s prudence and discretion, and of his ability to keep the secrets with which he might be entrusted.
In accordance with the custom thus observed by Pythagoras, we require a proof of obedience in this respect from each one who seeks the rank of an Adept of the Second Order of our Society.
You have obeyed the injunctions of your Conductor, and are doubtless impressed with the importance of Secrecy and Silence in the manifold affairs of our Society.
In days of peril and persecution, when priests and princes sought the lives of all who truly worshipped the Creator, our vows of Fidelity, Secrecy and Silence secured the Order from the attacks of pretended friends and of open foes; therefore, even as the Holy Prophet Jeremiah exclaims in the 5th verse of the 50th Chapter of his Prophecies, "Come, let us join ourselves to the Lord in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten."
The Anthem is then recited or read, not necessarily by the Inductor: "Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth"
The Conductor restores the Candidate to light.
Ind.: Let the Candidate kneel.
The Expositor, Candidate and Conductor kneel at the head of the pastos.
Ind.: Are you ready and willing to enter into a sacred and solemn Covenant with the Adepts of the Rose and Cross?
Can.: I am
Ind.: Then you will place your left hand beneath the Sacred Volume and extend your right hand upwards. State your Christian and Surnames, and the Motto by which you are known in the Society of the Rose and Cross and say after me:
Both: I, …, in the presence of the living God, Who hath triumphed over death and the terrors of the grave, solemnly swear that I will ever obey the just commands of the Supreme Magus; that I will not communicate to any living Soul, unless to a duly sworn Adept, the time, place and occasion of my induction; that I will study the mysteries of the Three Worlds, Elemental, Intellectual and Celestial; and finally that I will consider myself bound to the Fratres of this Grade by a peculiar tie, respecting and loving them while living, and mourning for them when dead. So help me, the Lord and Arbiter of Life and Death, and keep me faithful to this solemn Covenant.
Ind.: You will now once kiss the Sacred Volume which you hold.
This is done and the Sacred Volume is replaced on the pastos.
Ind.: Having entered into the Covenant of the Adepts, you may rise.
The Expositor, Conductor and Candidate rise and the Expositor returns to his place.
Ind.: Let me now inform you that the time of your reception as an Adeptus Minor is midnight, the place a Grave.
The Word is Thanatos. Pronounce the Word, Thanatos.
I recognise you, Frater, by that Word.
I meet you here, my Frater, at this solemn hour and in this solemn place, not to awaken your sympathies by allusion to the grief and anguish caused by death throughout the world, but that henceforth you and I may have something more in common - the precious heritage of the faithful and discreet - that you may learn that only by dying to your lower self, with its passions and prejudices, and being raised to a higher plane of life and knowledge can you accomplish your task as a Rosicrucian Adept, and guide those learners who may be committed to your charge.
The Conductor leads the Candidate to the Inductor in the East.
The Inductor then gives the Secrets.
Ind.: The sign of Adeptship is that of a teacher: stand erect and copy me.
Raise right hand and point up with the forefingers, left hand in small of the back.
I also give you the Grip of Adeptship; in this position we repeat the Secret Word already given, Thanatos.
We face each other. Can: Both hands extended to front, palms up, fingers bent up. Ind.: Both hands extended to front, palms down, fingers bent down. We now grip each others fingers.
The grip implies that perfect bond of fidelity which should henceforth exist between us; it is within our hearts that this bond originates, and while Truth has her residence there, it can never be weakened nor destroyed. The Knocks are 5 and 1: five implying Adeptship and one the first of the Adept Grades. Be seated, my Very Worthy Frater, in the vault of the Adepts, and the Expositor will read a Lecture on the aims and duties of the Adepti Minores.
The Lecture of the Expositor
Right Worthy Inductor, and Very Worthy Fratres Adepti. Frater Adeptus Minor. —You were chosen for admission to the Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia because having attained the rank of a Master Mason in a duly warranted Lodge, you had in that position shown yourself a man of worth and discretion, seeking more knowledge of the Mysteries that encompass us.
You have been received into the Second Order of our Society this day, because you have made steady progress in the studies and duties allotted to Fratres while they are members of the Four Grades of the First Order.
In the Grade of Zelator you were recommended to study the powers and properties of Numbers. and the philosophy of the Hebrew Kabala, in which the relations between Numbers, Letters, Words and Things are defined.
In the Grade of Theorises, the mysteries of Nature, of mineral, vegetable and animal life, are proper studies, and its ritual of admission teaches you that beyond the colours, as well as the forms of objects, there are occult relations which need investigation.
The Grade of Practicus has special relation to the ancient art of Alchymy and particularly in its spiritual aspects.
And lastly the Grade of Philosophus teaches the need of the highest mental culture in order to comprehend the works of the philosophers, and the sacred volumes of the World Religions.
The Theology of the Christian Church suggests a study of the older Jewish Faith, and this leads to researches into the pagan beliefs and the realms of the Greco-Roman mythology, also to the religions of Ancient Egypt and the great Buddhist, Hindu and Islamic Faiths.
Your studies in the First Order should have been so extensive as to give you broad views of human knowledge, life and duty.
Your reception into Adeptship introduces you into a new status - that of the Teacher, and be assured, my Very Worthy Frater, that your long probation and extensive tuition have not been only for your own benefit. Your studies should have been directed and your mind well stored with science, and your hands well trained in art, in order that you might teach others. What you have received, that freely give. Know, then, that in the First Order you are learners, in the Second Order you are Teachers, while in the Third Order you may become Rulers, Magi, or Magistri.
The Right Worthy Inductor has conferred upon you the Sign, Grip, and Word of the Grade of Adeptus Minor. To these secrets I now add that the Jewel of the Rosicrucian Society should still be worn. but suspended by a yellow ribbon, bearing Grade number.
In addition the Adept Grades have their own jewel, which is a triangular plate of gold, an equilateral and equiangular triangle, suspended by a ribbon of yellow colour. Upon its face is engraved the Tetractys, so called of Pythagoras, the famous Greek philosopher of Crotona, who lived about 520 B.C.
This consisted of ten stars, which were in later times replaced by ten Yods, or Jods, the Chaldee or Hebrew letter corresponding to the English I or Y. These were arranged in four rows of 1, 2, 3, and 4, so as to be seen also as four rows in the alternative position. The Yod was considered as the Sacred Symbol of God.
In Hebrew Numeration Yod was the Number Ten, called the Decad by ancient philosophers, and in this figure the Decad is considered as composed of One Yod referring to God, Unity, the Monad. Two Yods refer to IH, Jah; as above, so below; the Dyad, Matter.
Three Yods refer to IHV; to Adam, Seth and Enoch; and to the Holy Trinity of the Christian Faith, and Four Yods to Yod He Vau He - Jehovah, - the Tetragrammaton, becoming INRI in the Christian symbolism.
Around this figure of the Tetractys are spaces in which the names and numbers of the Three Grades can be engraved. On the reverse side are the words Soc. Rosic. in Anglia; around this are the Divine initials IHVH and INRI, and there may be added the initials of the owner and of his motto.
The Decad was called the emblem of the universe. If we further consider the Decad and the Tetractys of Pythagoras in the light of the hebrew Kabbalah, and according to the numerical values of the hebrew letters we shall find that the important symbolic number, Seventy two is produced. Yod, I, alone is ten, Yod, Heh, IH is ten and five, that is fifteen. Yod, Heh, Vau, IHV is ten, five and six that is twenty-one. Yod, Heh, Vau, Heh, IHVH is ten, five, six, five, that is twenty-six. The total is seventy-two, the number of steps of the Ladder of Jacob which reached from earth to heaven; upon each step, says the Talmud, was an Angel bearing one of the names of God. These names are derived from the words and letters of the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first verses of the fourteenth chapter of the book of Exodus, and to each name is added the angelic title of AL or AH as a termination.
The number 72 is the numeration of the name Chesed. Cheth Samech Daleth, 8, 60, 4, which signifies Mercy; it is the 4th Sephira in the Kabalistic Tree of Life and signifies one of the Divine attributes of the Ten holy Sephiroth.
As has been already stated, the work of the Adepts is that of Thition as well as self improvement; as an Adeptus Minor it is your special duty to teach the Zelatores and the Fratres of the Grade of Theoricus, while in the College ceremonials you should be at all times able and willing to perform the duties of an Ancient.
You may feel well assured my Frater that the most sure way to fix any knowledge in the memory, is to practise the art of teaching that knowledge to others who are seeking to reach your own stage of progress.
Exp.: Right Worthy Magister Inductor my task is done.
The Conductor leads the Candidate to the Inductor who invests him with the jewel of the Grade and presents him with a copy of the ritual.
Inductor rises and gives one knock; all rise.
Ind.: Fratres, the admission of our Frater to the grade of Adeptus Minor is now completed. May he long be spared to pursue his studies, and to assist others in their efforts to attain the Summum Bonum, - True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness.
Ind.: With the Mystic Word Thanatos and with the knocks ***** *, I close this college of Adepts.
Expositor and Conductor repeat the knocks.
Con. closes Sacred Volume.
Inductor gives the Benediction: Benedictus Dominus Deus noster per secula seculorum. Amen.
The College of Adepts meets in chamber called the Vault of the Adepts.