Thursday, February 26, 2015

How the Restored Tree humbled me

There are times where it is very helpful to be genuinely humbled, at least in an intellectual sense. I'm not talking about the kind of thing where a person understates their greatness, and then proceeds to go for a flight over the countryside using their hot air-filled head. I mean real, genuine humility at one's lack of knowledge.

A few months back, I got hooked on Frater Achad's rearrangement of the Paths on the Tree of Life. It seemed to make almost perfect sense: the Mother Letters were on the Middle Pillar, almost all of the Double Letters were touching the appropriate Sephirah (I can't decide if his justification for Jupiter's placement is a case of desperate retrofitting, or an excellent use of symbolism), and the whole arrangement preserved a sense of continuity when expanding or contracting the Tree as he described in The Anatomy of the Body of God. I had previously toyed with the idea of using his progressions of the Tree as an alternate concept of the Four Worlds in the Qabala, but I next set my sights on a statement from the aforementioned book:

The fact that this Reformation of the Paths produces a wealth of fresh Symbolism [...] is alone sufficient for changing the arrangement, even though it may upset the ideas of certain people who have based the Rituals of their Secret Orders upon the old plan.
(Chapter IV)
Being the way that I am (the phrase "one's reach exceeding one's grasp" comes to mind), I immediately seized on this idea: What if the G∴D∴ Neophyte Ceremony was altered to fit the symbolism of the Restored Tree? I started mapping the Officers to various Paths, and altering their implements accordingly. When it came to devising alternate Admission Badges for the first few Paths - which, for the most part, never had any role in the Outer Order - I was stumped. And it was here that I realized something that I had been ignoring for a while.

I don't know very much about the symbolism of the G∴D∴ ceremonies.

Believe it or not, this helped me gain perspective. I'm still (relatively) young, and I have an entire lifetime's study ahead of me. I can't expect to do everything, 'fix' everything, analyze everything right now - especially when there are still pieces that are out of my depth, if not completely out of my non-initiated reach. I can afford to take my time.

And that completely revamped Neophyte Ceremony? Well, I can wait to work on that for a while, too.