The Initiatic Tradition
The Rosicrucian Order, AMORC, is a philosophical and initiatic tradition. As a member, you are not just taking a course of study. You are passing through Degrees of study, rituals, ceremonies, exercises, and demonstrations that have a long historical background with new information constantly being added.
Rosicrucian initiations are rituals designed to mark the milestones of a student’s progress on the mystical path. In these beautiful rituals, mystical laws and principles are demonstrated in a dramatic form, in order to both inform and inspire the Rosicrucian student. All of the Degrees of Rosicrucian study are preceded by an initiation ceremony, written in an impressive and brief form that can easily be performed at home during your study period. You also have the option of receiving these initiations in a more elaborate form in the Order’s affiliated Lodges. You’ll find that these initiations, when conferred in the Temple of a Rosicrucian Lodge with all officers participating, are even more impressive to the psyche. Both the home ceremonies and the Lodge initiations are specially prepared to introduce to you in an impressive, symbolic, and dramatic way the importance of each new Degree into which you are entering.
The origin of initiation is as old as the earliest civilizations. The ancient Egyptians learned that demonstrations, the performance of various acts, and the use of objects, help to facilitate instruction, so that the lessons are more easily impressed upon the minds of the students. Dramas of impressive ceremonies consisting of music, spectacular lighting, processionals, chanting, and colorful costumes become an unforgettable experience to the participant.
All true esoteric initiations are mystery-dramas. In these dramatizations, ancient people sought to reenact certain fundamental truths of nature which they had discovered. These mystery-dramas were somewhat like the modern passion plays. In ancient times, the word mystery did not have the same connotation that it does now. It did not mean “strange” or “weird.” Rather, it referred to a unique gnosisthat is, knowledge which was to be revealed to the candidate for initiation. In fact, in ancient Rome the mysteries were called initia. The initiates were called mystae. The Latin word initiare meant “to inspire,” and initium meant “beginning” or “training.” Thus, candidates for initiation were introduced to an inspiring knowledge that was to make an emotional or psychic impression upon their consciousness as well as to add to their knowledge. In a dramatic way, the initiation sheds illumination upon certain subjects which otherwise may not be thoroughly understood and appreciated. Further, the mystical aspect of initiation arouses your psychic and emotional response concerning the subjects you are about to study and produces an awareness, a state of consciousness which otherwise could not be achieved.
No rite or ceremony, however, no matter what its form or how it is conducted, is a true initiation if it does not do the following:
(a) cause you to engage in introspection, that is, to turn your consciousness within, to look upon yourself;
(b) engender within you a feeling of aspiration and idealism; and
(c) exact from you a sacred obligation or promise which you make to yourself that you will try to fulfill your aspirations.
The purpose of Rosicrucian initiation is for the same traditional and psychological reasons.
Participation in initiation rituals does not, in itself, make you a true initiate, and Rosicrucian students are not required to participate in rituals. You become a Rosicrucian initiate only through your own efforts, merits, and preparation. This means that as you progress along the Rosicrucian path, it is through your personal work that you will advance; and everything that you can become, you will become through your own patience and perseverance. Even in antiquity when seekers traveled thousands of miles to reach ancient temples so as to be initiated and receive instructions from the Masters, they understood that true initiationmeaning illumination of consciousnesswould come only when they were prepared or ready on the inner plane, whether or not they were in a temple or proceeding through a ceremony or ritual at that particular time. What was true centuries ago is still true today. However, it is possible to accelerate this inner preparation, and this is the purpose of Rosicrucian initiations.
The Rosicrucian Order, AMORC, maintains a system of local Rosicrucian groups to supplement the home study program. As a student of the Rosicrucian Order, you have the option and privilege of attending an affiliated Lodge, Chapter, Pronaos, or Atrium Group if there is one in your area. Here you can enjoy the company of fellow Rosicrucians, hear inspiring lectures, engage in mystical experiments with other students, and participate in beautiful ceremonies and stimulating discussions. In addition, you’ll have the opportunity to attend a variety of special events, seminars and conventions. No Rosicrucian member is obligated to associate with a local Rosicrucian group, but it is highly recommended. This is a special privilege offered to you, and provides a unique opportunity to enrich your membership experience.
You may visit a local group without obligation three consecutive times. After that, you will be invited to become a member of the group. Members of a Lodge, Chapter, Pronaos, or Atrium Group support the activities of their local group through nominal dues or donations which are separate from their regular Rosicrucian membership dues.
Many local groups offer regular Open Meetings, where members of the public can attend a brief lecture and meet Rosicrucian students in an informal setting. To find out if Open Meetings are offered in your area, you may call or write our Rosicrucian Groups office at:
Rosicrucian Order, AMORC
1342 Naglee Avenue
San Jose, CA 95191
or check the Calendar of Events at: www.rosicrucian.org
Other Benefits of Membership
As a member of the Order, you will receive the following publications in addition to your lessons:
The Rosicrucian Digest
The official magazine of the Rosicrucian Order. The Digest, published bi-annually, contains fascinating and informative articles related to mysticism, philosophy, the sciences and the arts and is of particular interest to Rosicrucians and their friends.
The Rosicrucian Forum
The Forum supplements the Rosicrucian teachings, contains in-depth articles on aspects of the Rosicrucian studies and answers questions from Rosicrucian students. It is a private publication for Rosicrucian students only.
The Rose+Croix Journal is an international, peer-reviewed online Rosicrucian journal that is interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary in approach. The journal focuses on topics that are related to the sciences, history, the arts, mysticism, and spiritualityespecially interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary inquiries that traverse and lie beyond the limits of different fields of study.
The English Grand Lodge Bulletin
The Bulletin, a quarterly newsletter, keeps members updated on national and international Rosicrucian events and contains
membership information and news of current Rosicrucian activities.
Council of Solace
The Council of Solace is a group of Rosicrucians who meditate daily on behalf of others who are struggling with health, emotional, financial, or other challenges. The Council directs metaphysical assistance to those in need through a unique and mystical system of direct healing attunement. Rosicrucian students receive complete information about the services of the Council of Solace in their first packet of introductory materials. Anyone, whether or not they are members of the Rosicrucian Order, may request the aid of the Council of Solace. To request metaphysical assistance, write to:
Council of Solace
Rosicrucian Order, AMORC
1342 Naglee Ave.
San Jose, CA 95191
or phone (408)947-3684 and ask for the Council of Solace.
The headquarters of the Rosicrucian Order, AMORC, is beautiful Rosicrucian Park in San Jose, California. Fountains, exotic plants and trees, statuary and Egyptian-style buildings add to the special ambience of Rosicrucian Park. In addition to our administrative offices, Rosicrucian Park also houses the Rosicrucian Research Library, the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum and Planetarium, the Rosicrucian Peace Garden, and our Egyptian-style Grand Temple. Rosicrucian members may attend convocations and other activities in the Grand Temple, including sessions of the Council of Solace healing meditation. Guests are welcome to stroll through the Park grounds and take in the special atmosphere.
Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum and Planetarium
The museum offers an exciting chance to travel back in time and discover the mysteries of ancient Egypt. The Rosicrucian Order has the largest collection of Egyptian artifacts on display in Western North America. The museum, which is one of the largest tourist attractions in San Jose, California, allows guests to see the fascinating objects and ritual items the Egyptians used in everyday life, while at the planetarium visitors learn about various ancient civilizations’ knowledge of the solar system. Rosicrucian members, along with one guest, receive free admission to the museum. The planetarium is complimentary to all.
Rosicrucian Peace Garden
The Rosicrucian Peace Garden is an educational garden dedicated to the Rosicrucian ideals of peace and tolerance. Based on examples of gardens from the city of Akhetaton (now called Amarna), the garden contains plants and architecture authentic to the 18th Dynasty of ancient Egypt, including medicinal plants, beautiful flowers, a reflection pond for relaxation and contemplation, a small outdoor temple, and a grape arbor.
Rosicrucian Research Library
The Research Library contains a remarkable collection of books and other research materials on most esoteric subjects, as well as cultural, scientific, and other fascinating material. Rosicrucian members living in or visiting the San Jose area are encouraged to visit the library. We also offer a special program of library membership to visiting scholars, researchers, and the general public.
Books and Gifts
Many of our students have expressed an interest in high-quality books on mystical and metaphysical subjects to supplement their studies. Through catalog sales, we strive to bring both Rosicrucian students and the public the best in metaphysical books from many cultures, ancient and modern. Although not everything offered is directly associated with the Rosicrucian teachings, all items are carefully selected to harmonize with the Rosicrucian tradition. The purchase of supplementary books and student supplies is strictly optional. All of the information necessary for the Rosicrucian course of study is contained in the monographs which students receive as a benefit of their membership.
Rose-Croix University International
Rosicrucian students are eligible to enroll in classes sponsored by Rose-Croix University International. This optional program offers in-depth courses which expand on certain aspects of the Rosicrucian studies. Its purpose is to offer Rosicrucian students opportunities for personal development and spiritual growth in a classroom environment under the personal instruction of faculty members. The Rosicrucian faculty are qualified experts in their fields of instruction and members of our International Research Council.
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