The Cornerstone of the Traditional
Valid primarily for the Outer/First
Order of the GOLDEN DAWN;
An organization behaves as a living thing, it will grow and change even as those individuals whom breathe life into it grow and change. The life and current, which flows through an organization, must attach itself to a core skeleton so to speak; this is why many governments today have a constitution, so that as the nation grows and changes, the essence remains unchanged and the people could rally behind the core belief system, on which the nation is based. This seems to work for any group of people, including the Golden Dawn tradition, if there are no core beliefs the individuals within the group will grow apart and form smaller factions. We have seen this within the Golden Dawn community over the past one hundred years: the Golden Dawn is capable of invoking great, healing Light into our sick and dying world; we can, as a group make a wonderful difference in the world with beautiful Hermetic, Rosicrucian tradition, but not if we are in discord. The current of the classical Golden Dawn, as well as other Golden Dawn groups, must grow and evolve around some basic core practices and beliefs or else we grow apart and become weak and bickering factions that cause little change in a world already brimming with weakness and bickering.
We as the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn must strive to maintain and uphold the principles of our predecessors; in particular, those principles established by S.L. MacGregor-Mathers. These provide the core beliefs and practices that will place all Golden Dawn practitioners within the same framework and will enable us to harmonize our energy and current. This does not imply that we should restrict our individuality, but it does mean that we must work within a framework that will give us the strength in numbers needed to maximize our human potential within an initiation school environment. If we cannot rally behind these basic tenets then we risk becoming small ineffective, isolated factions, and we risk the fate of mediocrity and placing the Golden Dawn as insignificant in the pages of history.
The following principles are guidelines that pertain to the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn; there are countless other Golden Dawn Groups who use modified or different symbolism, divine names, initiations and some have even placed Second Order teachings within the Outer Order. We simply are not, in any way suggesting that different Golden Dawn groups should not exist, nor are we suggesting that they are not part of the Great Work in whichever way seems beneficial to their members. What we are saying is that these principles will harmonize our collective current within the framework of the traditional Golden Dawn. While the inception of the original Order of the Golden Dawn is somewhat controversial and there are some in today’s occult community whom do not believe that there was any involvement of the Rosicrucian Fraternity in its creation, we hold the idea of a true, underlying Rosicrucian Current within the traditional Golden Dawn in the highest esteem. Thus, we will always defend as fact, that the inner core, the second or Inner Order, which governs the Golden Dawn in the Outer, was, is and must be Rosicrucian.
"The Imperatrix of the German Order, one Anna Sprengel, authorized the Englishmen to set up a British Chapter to be known as the Golden Dawn." - David Conway, Ritual Magic
We are certain that the Cipher MSS and the Z-Documents are the most important papers, which constitute the rites and membership in the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn. Furthermore, we believe the true seeker of Light values spiritual lineage far more than mere paper lineage, and we do not believe that paper lineage is a requisite toward upholding Golden Dawn principles.
• The Cipher Manuscripts are to be considered as the raw basics of the Group’s rites or ritualistic framework. The following specific, outlined instructions are to be followed verbatim. For example:
- The symbolism of the Scepter of the Hegemon. Quote from Folio 3 of the Cipher MSS:
“24. mitre headed scepter = religion & a guide”
• The teachings of S.L. MacGregor-Mathers (G.H. Frater D.D.C.F.) the primary teacher and Chief Adept of the Original Golden Dawn remain unsullied within our Order. That is to say:
- We will not under any circumstances regard as part
of the traditional Golden Dawn system, the doctrine of dissidents such
as Aleister Crowley and others like him. Although we realize that there
are Golden Dawn practitioners whom may value and even implement such teaching,
and we do not wish for our position to be construed as ridicule toward
these; we do however hold firm that not all, which would represent itself
as Golden Dawn is compatible with the traditional Golden Dawn system.
We would defend the rights of others to present the Golden Dawn material
as their worldview compels them to express it. We are simply clarifying
what the traditional Golden Dawn cornerstone is for those seeking to practice
• We are compelled uphold and follow the
Z- Documents verbatim.
“He (Westcott) commissioned Mathers to write-up the rituals into workable shape and himself began a correspondance with the adept.”
For example, 2 premises of the Z-Documents:
- The Hierophant represents the ancient Egyptian God Osiris and thus invokes this God form prior to any initiation. Quote from Z1 “Enterer of the Threshold”:
“The G.D.'s Hall of the Neophyte is ruled over by Ousiri, through the office of the Hierophant. The G.D. Ousiri is the Expounder of the Sacred Mysteries”
- The Hiereus represents the ancient Egyptian God Horus and thus invokes this God form prior to any initiation. Quote from Z1 “Enterer of the Threshold”:
“Far across the hall from the throne of Ousiri in the East, in the place symbolic of the greatest darkness, is enthroned Hoor, empowering the office of Hiereus. Hoor, the Coptic name of Horus (the younger) or Heru represents the guardian force, protecting the Hall.”
- Members of the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn regard
each other as brothers and sisters and will not be divided by political
issues. However, healthy discussions on any number of topics including
politics are certainly encouraged.
• Acceptance and respect of men and women on an equal basis.
- Every member of the Order is to be treated as if they
were a true brother/sister, as if all shared the same father/mother.
“The magical system taught in the GD is to be classed as Theurgy, the Magic of Light, as distinct from all types of sex-magic and even exclusive of them.”
• Respect towards all legitimate world religions and other Golden Dawn Groups. For example:
- While the Golden Dawn is not a religion in and of itself,
it is governed by a strict creed of respect toward the Lord of the Universe.
“16. Never condemn other religions”
- A particular Golden Dawn group, whether it is reformed, traditional or thelemic will not be presumed as right or wrong over another.
• Practice and teaching of healing techniques and rites for free. This means:
- The Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn seeks to elevate
mankind in general. That is to say, we seek to help everyone reach his/her
• Practice of regular astral and/or physical 0=0 initiations in a full Temple setup.
- Initiation is a form of sowing seeds of Light into
“Believe thyself there and thou art there.”
- We must constantly invoke Light and one very important
method toward achieving this is full temple initiation.
• Every member of our Group must have signed an Oath of Secrecy prior to his/her 0=0 initiation. This guarantees the following:
- The integrity of our Order will be preserved.
• Membership without due initiation (physical and/or astral) is not possible.
- The Light can only be passed from one to another.
- The Inner Order is separate and distinct from the outer
Golden Dawn Order.
• A strict hierarchy. This means:
- There is ONE Chief Adept for the Group as a whole.
He/She may appoint up to two Co-Chiefs (most Second Orders have 2 Co-Chiefs).
• Any initiatory Temple of our Group must have at least two members of the Inner Order.
- The Z-Documents indicate that two Inner Order Members
are necessary to form a working initiating vortex of Light.
“6. Adepts sit on a raised place
- That in spite of any publication in the past, present
or future, the teachings of the original Inner Order must remain with
very minor exceptions within the Rosicrucian Order and completely concealed
from the Outer Order.
As a species, we are ever changing and growing and what we create reflects this, but some things must remain unchanged in order for growth to be structured and for it to accomplish our will and aspiration. It is our hope that all Golden Dawn groups with their various individual characteristics will join forces in bringing healing energy into the world. While we respect the differing and varied opinions held by other groups, we firmly believe that following the classic Golden Dawn Tradition as taught by S.L. McGregor-Mathers will harmonize our collective current and give us tremendous power and structure in bringing great and wonderful changes into this sick and dying world.
HEGEMON: "Inheritor of a dying world, we call thee to the living beauty."
HIEREUS: "Wanderer in the wild Darkness, we call thee to the gentle Light."
HIEROPHANT: "Long has thou dwelt in the darkness,
quit the night and seek the day."