Sep 02, 1995 02:26 AM
by Ann E. Bermingham
I wish to thank Jerry, Patrick and Eldon, K. Paul (are you related to Ru Paul?
:-)) for their definitions of "initiate". It's a word that I'd heard a lot
lately and had begun to wonder what it really meant, including it's accompany
I also wish to thank those participating in the CWL discussion. It has given me
a greater perspective in viewing his work, certainly a more realistic one.
During the many years I was in the LCC (and am no longer affiliated with), he
was revered for starting the church and no criticism was ever uttered against
him. So I had a much different viewpoint of him.
On the other hand, one of his books has been read aloud at Adyar Lodge in
Chicago and those attending were allowed to agree or disagree with what he
wrote. From those readings, which were about how an occultist should live, he
seemed to be an exacting judge of what others should do to live with the energy
forces. An example of this is what kind of art you should surround yourself
with, kinds of furniture and bed. He recommended no mattress but strips of
cloth over a frame. He detested wool clothing because he said it could not be
properly cleaned. CWL hated the fashions of the day because he felt the
occultist should only wear loose and flowing clothing. How many of us can wear
a toga to work?
This exacting attitude carried over into his work with the church and the
Science of the Sacraments, as did his link with Masonry and theosophy. Let me
put it this way, he seemed to be (besides everything else) a stickler for
details. He felt everything had to be "just so", in order for the forces to
work to their maximum. While he was a pioneer, I've come realize that this
attitude was one peculiar to his personality and not recommendations from a
As the saying goes, there are many ways to skin the onion, and CWL had only one.
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