The Birth of a Magician
A few years ago I saw a movie called The Last Time I Committed Suicide. The story was inspired by a letter Neal Cassady wrote to his friend, Jack Kerouac. The title describes the last time Neal had things going really good and how he fucked it up and lost it all.
I can not count the number of times I've committed suicide.
And I'm still alive.
My eyes are wide open and all I see is darkness. A black hoodwink over the top of my head, I'm naked beneath a thin black robe and wearing bright red socks.
All around me I can sense wisps of movement, the shuffling of feet. Unfamiliar voices of men and women chant, pray, and declare in somber, confident tones rising and falling from whispers to shouts and back again. Their voices vibrate. I recognize some of the languages spoken besides English there is Hebrew, Latin, Enochian, and Greek.
"Bring him to me." A male voice commands.
A strong, firm hand grips my arm and guides me forward.
The voice addresses me, "You stand at the gateway of hidden knowledge between the Pillars of Joachim and Boaz. Know that to enter is to change. Do you will to enter?"
"I will it."
"Inheritor of a dying world, why do you seek to enter our sacred Temple? Why do you seek admission into our sacred Order?"
"I've wandered in darkness all my life. I seek the light. I believe the light to be found within this Order."
I reflexively let out a tiny gasp as the hoodwink is ripped away from my head. The room is dimly lit, but enough that my eyes take a moment to adjust to the light after coming from the utter blackness of the cloth. Candles of various colors flicker around the room. I stand between two large pillars, one black and one white, both covered in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs telling at least one story I recognize. The story of the lovers Isis and Osiris and the betrayal of their brother Set. Set kills Osiris and scatters his remains. Isis and her son, Horus, gather Osiris' remains and resurrect him.
With me between the pillars is a large black altar made of two black cubes, one set on top of the other. Upon the altar rests a single red rose, a glass of red wine, burning incense, a small plate with bread and salt on it, a gold cross, and a burning red lamp.
Gathered like soldiers around the altar, pillars, and I are a dozen men and women dressed in black robes similar to mine and wearing matching red socks. Some of them have arcane symbols attached to their robes like military badges and honors. They all wear Egyptian headdress. Except for the man over seeing the initiation ritual, the Hierophant or High Priest, he sits in a throne east of the altar wearing a head piece that reminds me of the Catholic Pope. He is the only one in the room dressed in a white robe. The High Priest has a thin moustache and goatee and wields a long wooden staff notched with strange sigils and glyphs.
Standing directly in front of me is the big man who held my arm and stripped my hoodwink. Now he stands expressionless, breathing heavy, wielding a long, slender, silver sword, with it's sharp tip to my neck. He's a large man, maybe 300 pounds, and over six feet tall. For some reason he doesn't wear a head dress. His head looks to have been shaved clean with a straight edge razor. His eyes are round and unblinking. A single bead of sweat hangs onto his left temple. In a deep, gruff voice, "In the name of the Morning and Evening Star we consecrate you in fire and purify you in water."
Two women approach, a blonde sprinkling water around me, and the other waving an incense stick in triangular patterns. One is blonde, the other brunette.
The High Priest speaks, "Thrice you will be slain for breaking this oath of secrecy to our Order. Your heart will be cut out, your throat will be slit, and your body will be burned. Do you wish to continue and be forever bound by this oath and this Order?"
The big, bald man lowers the sword and walks away from me. The brunette whispers to me, "Kneel." I do as she says.
The High Priest continues, "Inheritor of a dying world. What is your name?"
"Parsifal du Lac."
"Long have you dwelt in darkness, Frater Parsifal du Lac, we receive you into our Order. Arise. Rise neophyte and knight, Parsifal du Lac."
I am Neophyte 0 = 0 of the Order of the Golden Dawn of the Temple of Isis...
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