If man chooses to pass through a second, spiritual birth it takes place through initiation. The esoteric initiation is based on the thought that there exist several layers of reality that the adept can explore and penetrate. This occurs through initiation. Initiation is a pivotal concept in esotericism. The goal of initiation is to lay bare the hidden core than can be found behind the outer appearance of phenomena. Through initiation the adept enters the inner zones of religions and myths and gains knowledge of their hidden truths.
Initiation permits entry into the core that is hidden under the surface of existence. As a result of this knowledge, the adept learns how to control the mechanisms of existence and can influence these in accordance with his own will. Mircea Eliade, the historian of religion, defines initiation in the book Rites and Symbols of Initiation:
The central moment of every initiation is represented by the ceremony symbolizing the death of the novice and his return to the fellowship of the living. But he returns to life a new man, assuming another mode of being, Initiatory death signifies the end at once of childhood, of ignorance, and of the profane condition.
Initiation is based on a metaphysical death, a descent into the underworld, rebirth and ascent. The initiate leaves his old life and old self behind and becomes born again, often with a new name designating the new identity. The adept leaves behind the state of being limited to man, whose will and action are predetermined, and becomes a god with a free will and power to create.
A voluntary entrance into the Qliphotic worlds is a rare occurrence in the Qabalistic tradition. The Qliphoth are viewed as abominable and terrifying worlds that the adept of the light must do anything to avoid. But, in certain forms of heretic Qabalah we find the idea that true initiation and illumination can be reached only by entering the Qliphotic regions. In shamanism and the old mystery cults, the descent into the underworld was a key element and entry into the Sitra Ahra and the Qliphotic regions is in accordance with this radiation, albeit in its most extreme and radical form. The Qliphoth are not merely associated with the kingdom of death in which the ancestors of mankind roam, but the Qliphoth brings the adept in contract with the outer darkness that can be found beyond the universe. To enter the Qliphoth consciously of one’s own free will is to begin a path of initiation in which man and his world are reborn in the deepest sense.
The Qliphotic initiation is a unique path that, in a systematic and controlled fashion, works with the forces of chaos and the utmost darkness. Under the surface of the light tradition the dark tradition has been hinted at, often with warnings and unspoken allusions. There are three main levels of knowledge of which the first is our mundane knowledge and the information presented by common science. Under this level we find the light esoteric knowledge that has been transmitted through the common occult societies. Beneath this level we can find the dark esoteric knowledge.
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The dark path of initiation is indeed rare since it leads out towards chaos, and few individuals are able to tread this path. The light esotericism leads back to the divine unity, while the dark esotericism leads beyond the divine. The Qliphotic initiation is Draconian in a dual sense: Draconian is generally translated as ‘harsh’ or ‘severe’, which is a suitable synonym also of the Draconian path, It is harsh, but it leads to worlds of singular beauty. The appellation of the path as Draconian also indicates its direction; the light esotericism leads to a unity with male gods of the light, like Yahweh or Marduk. The dark esotericism, on the other hand, leads out towards primordial dragon entities such as Leviathan, Tehom or Tiamat, who existed long before the gods of light and who exist in the infinity beyond the divine light. To the initiated adept on the Qliphotic path, the darkness of infinity is a hidden light, so infinitely brighter than the light of the gods that it is thus perceived as darkness.
When the adept enters the Qliphotic tunnels, a process that corresponds to alchemy is initiated. The alchemical path of initiation has three main levels, which in turn can be divided into several lesser levels. The three main levels are:
Nigredo corresponds to the material level and the astral plane, Albedo corresponds to the mental plane, and Rubedo to the divine, final goal. Occasionally, alchemy also uses a f ourth level called Citrinitas or ‘the yellow phase’, The Cirtrinitas level is between the white and the red levels, and if Citrinitas is part of the table it generally denotes the mental level, while Albedo in that case corresponds to the astral level and Nigredo to the material level. The three or four phases can also be divided into seven levels that correspond to metals and phases in the alchemical process of transmutation. The seven phases correspond to the Chakras in the Indian Tantra, which are likened to energy zones through which the ‘Kundalini Serpent’ passes on its ascent from lower to higher states of consciousness. The seven alchemical levels also represent the seven runes that symbolize the awakening of the adept according to the Gothic Qabalah created by Johannes Bureus in the 17th century. The Qliphoth on the middle pillar, together with the four Qabalistic worlds, can be connected to the alchemical process.
The Draconian initiation is based on 1+9+1 levels that together constitute 11 steps corresponding to the Qliphoth, and the 11 demon rulers that act as antitheses and nightsides of Creation. The first step is where the uninitiated begins, and that signifies an opening of the gate to the dark side. The following 9 steps represent the 9 levels of the nightside or the underworld that Odin passes through during his initiation in the secrets of the runes. These steps bring the adept to the heart of darkness and transforms man into a god, as promised by the Serpent in Genesis 3:5. in the Biblical myths, man beings his initiation by eating the fruits of knowledge. According to the light and esoteric religion, man should seek his way back to the permissive state of childhood that reigned before man ate the fruits of knowledge. According to the dark and esoteric lore, man should instead seek to fulfil the search for knowledge and leave Eden to find wisdom in the unknown. The last and eleventh step reaches out to absolute mystery and beyond the limits of the universe.
In this process through which the magician – like Odin or the Egyptian alchemical god Khepera – sacrifices himself and enters the underworld, man can be transformed and pass from being a creation to becoming a creator. The world was not created at some point in the past as claimed by the esoteric monotheistic religions. The world is created in every moment. Most people are creations of the past, but through the magical initiation we can become creators of the future.
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