The Only Initiation That Counts Is The One You Do Yourself!… Are You Dependant On Another For Your Ascent?… Take Your Power Back Through Self Initiation!!!
There are two definitions to the word initiation both of which greatly apply to magick and the way in which practitioners approach it. The first definition is: “the action of admitting someone into a secret or obscure society or group, typically with a ritual”. This definition is not only the most solid definition of an initiation but the very nature of most magickal communities. In almost every single coven, temple, and any other form of spiritual or magick group there is this concept of initiation. In most of these cases the initiate is put through some form of ritual with another more experienced practitioner present to “guide” them through it.
I have personally found this method of initiation to be a political performance rather than a spiritual ritual of beginnings. In most communities, there is an ego struggle. Don’t get me wrong I am not against ego, I have my own huge ego that I let out its cage often, yet I am not in denial of its existence or presence. Most spiritual or magickal leaders in these groups have a denial of their own ego and these initiation rituals are the perfect performance for them to get the superiority authority fix they need. Making these rituals most often than not dull by including a set-in stone requirement for another practitioner.
The requirement for another person is usually backed up by a need for them to pass something onto the uninitiated. Reiki is a perfect example of this. Many reiki masters insist that only another reiki master can pass on the energy for a non-practitioner to become a practitioner and be able to perform reiki. This type of ritual requirements are a plague not only on serious occult communities but also the moulding minds of novices and beginners. A pollution that leaves a dirty stain on the minds of those with great potential.
If A Third Party Is a Requirement To Progress On A Path Then Explain To Me How The First Person Got There?
My question to this is simple. If I need a third party to initiate me, to make it possible for me to go further, how did the first person to do this get there? The first one to do this didn’t have someone to initiate them so how did they do it? The answer to this is simple, these requirements are bullshit and those pushing them on others are full of shit. The only requirement in initiation is a single person and a desire to walk a path. Everything else can be learned from the source.
Now we come to the second definition on initiation. This definition is: “the action of beginning something”. The only kind of initiation that counts is the one you do yourself. If you want someone to initiate you with their hocus pocus then by all means give them your responsibility but ascent means taken control not giving it away for others to abuse. Self-initiation is the only way to make it count. My method is with the pantheon I am working with myself. If I want initiated I’ll go to Odin, or Freyja, or Hel or the better option, I’ll do it myself. The occult is full of superiority complexes and many leaders of these groups would rather feed their ego and its denial than help you on your ascent. My question to you is this, will you take the reins of your path, initiate the beginning yourself and take responsibility for your climb? Or will you let a master hold your hand like you were a little child?
Some family lines of Tradtional Witchcraft require an outsider to be initiated by a family member in order to be “adopted” into that family so that the adopted initiate can then call upon the ancestral and archetypal powers of the family. I wonder, could such ancestral powers be accessed if one were to self initiate? Would the ancestors of that line consider it insulting if one tried to access their power outside of the family? And if so, would there not be inherent dangers present in such a self initiation compared to going through the route of being adopted into that family?
Ill ask my question again then. How did the first person do it?
Ascent is a personal individual thing, why is any family or group required for that? Ancestor work can be and has been done without any outside influence.
Being adopted into a family means you let someone decide if you were worthy enough to be in the family in the first place. Why should they get a say? The danger in outside initiation is that it takes away your own self power. Not intrinsically of course but mentally. In essence you are saying, I cannot ascend without another person to do this for me. You give responsibility of your own ascent to another person who is not affected by your ascent. (not directly anyway).
Why would I let anyone else decide how I ascend or what I am capable of doing by myself anyway?
Amen. Couldn’t have said it better myself man. I can attest from personal experience that the “knowledge” and “power” I’ve been granted access to via your first definition pales in comparison to the kind of raw power and illumination I’ve unlocked through my own personal ascent. The hierarchical ranking systems within magickal orders are there only to preserve the egos of their so called masters and to stunt an adepts progress. Typical masturbatory primate mechanism for maintaining dominance.
Of course, the spirits can and do initiate without the requirement of a third party. I can however, think of one proponent of the mentor system of initiation who would argue that initiations conducted by a mentor on the “inside” offer a safe and controlled way of initation undertaken after a process of supervised preparation by someone who has “gone before”. Whereas self initiation may lead to mental imbalance. One might consider the experiences of Merlin as described in Geoffrey on Monmouth’s Vita Merlini as an example of this. Grayson Magnus discusses this in his book "Authentic Witchcraft;
“So called self-initiation, as practiced in Wicca, is unique to that religion and is not practiced in most magical traditions. Students learning from books alone will lack direction and will not benefit from acceptance into the lineal and archetypal powers of the tradition. This begs the question; how do the self-initiated know that they have been accepted by the ancestors and archetypal powers? Delusion is the scourge of the self-initiated. On the other hand, in any line of descent, someone had to come first. So, it is at least theoretically possible for a self-initiated individual to be genuinely adopted by the powers. In the ancient past this required long periods of isolation, living exposed to nature and lurking around the graves of one’s ancestors. Initiation often came as a revelation which resulted in madness. This is because the initiate was not prepared for the experience by a qualified mentor. History remembers the self-initiated as eccentric hermits and village mad-man. It is also considerable that such madness may have simply resulted from the the hardships of isolation and exposure. Again, delusion is the scourge of the self-initiated.” (pp. 10-11).
Easily answered: Results. For example, if someone tried to work with one of my ancestral spirits and the spirit did not want to, do you think they will get what they want from the experience? Frankly it would not be up to me, and even if it was I would just tell them to try their luck. If I was feeling especially benevolent and had reason to think it could bring them harm I might give the person in question a friendly heads up, but it is still ultimately out of my hands.
It just struck me that this is another rehash of the protestant / catholic divide on authenticity and authority; catholicism argues that authentic authority comes through an apostolic succession of bishops going all the way back to Peter and thence to Christ, while protestants argue from the authority of scripture alone and how the individual interprets it in the light of his / her relationship with the Christian god. For the former, time and history are the markers of authority and authenticity; for the latter it is the experience of the individual. The folks at BALG, being largely American, which is still largely a Protestant country (if not in name, then in fact) will be influenced by the Protestant interpretation of authenticity and authority, while the author, that I mentioned, coming from an Irish tradition, would be largely influenced by the Catholic interpretation (even if that influence is subconscious). I guess this is also why by and large Hatian Voudon also places a large influece on initiation via a form of apostolic succession.
For me personally, I can see both sides of the coin; I know the value of direct initiatory experience and I can also appreciate the security and sense of continuity / identity (and community) that being initated into a long and well established tradition by living representatives can afford - and the power that that brings. In the case of the latter, it is not only the spirits who initate you, it is the egregore created by the spirits and ones own brethren that also participate in the experience such that the initiate is born into a community of not only the dead (or discarnate) but also the living as well. And the initate is always accountable to that community; which of course acts as a check against the individual “going off of the deep end” - the madness that Grayson Magnus speaks of in the preceding quote. Whereas self initiation, by its very nature is quite individualistic in nature and because of that, does not have such in built safeguards.
Julius Evola wrote that finding a legitimate organization (maybe “only” a Master, too) for being initiated has become the harder option.
So it would remain to be somewhat qualified already from birth, or indeed getting to work.
He is correct; even more as the old schools stumble and fall due to spiritual stagnation, populism, falling prey to the cult of personality and a decrease in experienced and committed membership.