About the latest convent and the "The Air challenge"

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Soror O
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About the latest convent and the "The Air challenge"

Post by Soror O »

I participated to the convent The Rainbow Bridge and the Smaragd of The Devil via Skype and I’d like to share my thoughts and feelings about the convent. Also, in order to reach out and practise openness - and if needed - this thread can also be used as peer support thread for new members facing the "air challenge".

I’m myself new to the brotherhood, standing on the threshold of the community like to two faced Janus: both an outsider looking in, and a-sort-of-an insider looking out. I have not experienced the SoA before the logde reform (where the lodges were declared independent from the central structures of the brotherhood) so I have no reference to the earlier SoA.

First, I found the presentations invigorating. The ascetic sincerety of fra Amantes’ poem was delighful. Sor Babd’s presentation brought warmth and praise to the presentatives’ collective. A warmly welcomed addition! All presentations highlighted the challenge that we all face: How the great work of uniting the opposites is brought to life – in one’s own life, in each logde, in the brotherhood as a whole. Fra Smaragd referred to a sacred gift which keeps on giving – but in order it to keep giving we must live up to it, we must face the infinite challenges it offers us and resolve them time after time. Also Fra Wyrmfang pointedly mentioned some of the challenges that the brotherhood faces, ie. stagnation and apathy. His straightforward manner of naming and addressing these challenges really deepened my trust in the brotherhood. But what is hard to us humans, is the fact that growing is painful. We cannot really reach the stars holding on to our petty temperaments and their limitations, a fact that fra Nefastos also pointed out in his presentation. I struggle with this myself all the time.

What was also addressed was the “air challenge”, ie. the phase where new members are forced to seek their place withing the brotherhood – without any fixed guidelines, except the brotherhood’s philosophy (and the brotherhoods egregore calling them, of course). Before I became a member, I thought that this “air challenge” was wholly a good thing, for it forces the new member to guide himself to find his place. I solely love the idea that there is no given structure, but it really asks much from the neophyte. In most cases there may not be a ready place to inhabit within the brotherhood, but the place has to be built. And in order to something to be build, something existing has be challenged and (partly) reformed. To build something requires courage (hearts strength) and clear vision – virtues that are not easily mastered (in the subtle realms).

Air is also an element of masculine intelligence and it seems to reign the outward sphere of SoA. For myself, it is a challenge to pass trough this outward sphere into the realms in which more holistic practise would take place. I realize this would require my own initiative and action. It is not the outside obstacles or structures that hinder my motion – rather the obstacles are inside my being. Stagnated beliefs, scemas and temperamental shortcomings. It has somewhat surprised me how much self reflection my membership has initiated. It's like a being in psychoanalysis and one (I mean I ":D") can get quite paralyzed by my own neurotic ego, such as follows:

1. Me: "I should take initiative to do thing x."
2. Inner voice: "Well nobody would be interested/ the people interested would be annoying and the whole thing would contribute to you being even more misantrophic/ you wouldn't have the time/effort/character to follow it through/ You don't even want the thing x, except because of lesser motives such as attention, ego-boosting etc."
3. Me: "Thank you inner voice for your deep wisdom."


*Repeat

So in this case, I would be deligted if someone would tell me to scrub the temple floors or something in order for me to pass this "air challenge".

But I must remember that this kind of inner dialoque is not something "excess" to the work. It is the work. And this is the spirit that I'd like to inhabit withing the brotherhood: becoming spirit, is becoming truly human. I believe that intimacy of brokeness is the way that God is revealed in us. Jesus himself died, not dignified, but as a broken man - and there a Whole being.
If you want to reborn, let yourself die.
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Astraya
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Re: About the latest convent and the "The Air challenge"

Post by Astraya »

Firstly, I want to thank all the speakers in annual meeting.

I myself feel that the best way to react to feelings of apathy and challenges is to be a good example in one’s own behavior. Just pointing out things is not enough if there is a sight that things are not going the way they should. Especially now, when each lodge is responsible from it’s own working methods, the example is important. Independence brings big responsibility.

I also feel that lodges, Lucifer, Salome and Graal, for example are working in fruitful and connecting ways, and also announce the work in public forums as well as inner areas in brotherhood. I don’t see apathy to be problem considering the whole brotherhood. Few lodges are not in contact outside the brotherhood and this is common and normal way in occultism I think.
Help, guidelines, sights and closeness are always near in brotherhood if one simply asks for them.
“There can be no transforming of darkness into light and of apathy into movement without emotion”
― Carl Gustav Jung
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Soror O
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Re: About the latest convent and the "The Air challenge"

Post by Soror O »

Astraya wrote: Tue Jul 06, 2021 4:16 pm (...) the best way to react to feelings of apathy and challenges is to be a good example in one’s own behavior.


I solely agree. It is also important to propose some practical solutions to challenges (as Wyrmfang did).
Astraya wrote: Tue Jul 06, 2021 4:16 pm Just pointing out things is not enough if there is a sight that things are not going the way they should. Especially now, when each lodge is responsible from it’s own working methods, the example is important. Independence brings big responsibility.


What I was praising was the openess of discussion. In discussions I don't see that participants are making factual claims, rather bringing forth their (sometimes vague) impressions and perspectives. This has to do with the fact that I myself process thought through speaking, also I'm a fan of John Stuarts Mill's theory of free speech. The social miljeau of free speech is a collective incubation chamber. Free speech is space where seeds of idea can be sawn. Some of them plant, some of them don't.
Astraya wrote: Tue Jul 06, 2021 4:16 pm
I also feel that lodges, Lucifer, Salome and Graal, for example are working in fruitful and connecting ways, and also announce the work in public forums as well as inner areas in brotherhood. I don’t see apathy to be problem considering the whole brotherhood. Few lodges are not in contact outside the brotherhood and this is common and normal way in occultism I think.
Help, guidelines, sights and closeness are always near in brotherhood if one simply asks for them.
Thank you for your perspective! Being new to the brotherhood I have no enlighted opinion whether there is or is not apathy or stagnation... The act of Wyrmfang's open speech made me just think the following: If there would be challenges like this, they would propably be confronted since there is such openess and alertness among us.
If you want to reborn, let yourself die.
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Nefastos
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Re: About the latest convent and the "The Air challenge"

Post by Nefastos »

I agree that making the difference is foremostly by doing & showing example. A glorious silver medal is given to discussion and keeping it alive and healthy.

Here are some ways how I have tried to answer to this trial by air (the air challenge) between the lodges and thus build bridges between them:

(1) Keep lodge Lucifer as openly discussive as possible, including:
- Welcoming both guests and members from the other SoA lodges to the meetings
- Making the meetings regular and interesting (anyone can suggest topics)
- Giving open information about the meetings in advance in an open thread here in the forum
- Making possible to attend to the meetings via Skype (instead of closing off meetings because of the pandemics)
- Recording lodge meetings and distributing them freely to members, so that also those not attending may benefit
- Making two convents where speakers from all the lodges (as well as outside of the brotherhood) have been invited
- Trying to answer to members' wishes to meet also outside the lodge meetings
- Helping to arrange the lodge members' secondary discussion group
- Being active in this forum where all the members (plus our guests) can meet & talk about anything

(2) Founding a new lodge, Salome, which uses information in a new way, including expanding actively on new platforms (blog, Instagram) to make it super easy for anyone to find

(3) Being active in different inter-lodge or common Star of Azazel projects, from books to open reading groups – too many to list here

(4) Doing the constant SoA infrastructure work with lodge Graal and its division Viides Askel

I think here we have many good points of possible access other lodges should try to follow.

Soror O wrote: Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:26 pmAnd in order to something to be build, something existing has be challenged and (partly) reformed. To build something requires courage (hearts strength) and clear vision – virtues that are not easily mastered (in the subtle realms).

This is a persistent misunderstanding. No existing forms need to be challenged to create something new, and this is especially clear in the new lodge-oriented system. A member can do whatever one wants, and it needs not to challenge anything else. On the contrary, there is the brotherhood tree whose branches are invited to grow in any direction and in any way they like. But in order to do this (that is: to do anything) one would actually either (1) had to know what one likes to do, and then do it, or (2) to keep on the branch that is already directed by such individuals in vitality and growth.

Soror O wrote: Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:26 pmWhat was also addressed was the “air challenge”, ie. the phase where new members are forced to seek their place withing the brotherhood – without any fixed guidelines, except the brotherhood’s philosophy (and the brotherhoods egregore calling them, of course). Before I became a member, I thought that this “air challenge” was wholly a good thing, for it forces the new member to guide himself to find his place. I solely love the idea that there is no given structure, but it really asks much from the neophyte. In most cases there may not be a ready place to inhabit within the brotherhood, but the place has to be built.

Here is the easiest path I can suggest:

(1) After joining any an active lodge, keep attending to its meetings and being active in the discussions in the meetings and in the forum.
(2) After one year of doing this, ask your lodge guide's recommendation and apply for lodge Graal, the lodge that gives practices.
(3) Work through the three degrees of Graal to its hermetic group. While doing this, remain in open discussion like before.
(4) In the hermetic group work intensely with the other colour aspect members of this and other lodges. You won't have a day without duties and spiritual challenges, if you are willing to face them.
Faust: "Lo contempla. / Ei muove in tortuosa spire / e s'avvicina lento alla nostra volta. / Oh! se non erro, / orme di foco imprime al suol!"
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Soror O
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Re: About the latest convent and the "The Air challenge"

Post by Soror O »

Ofcourse the independent lodges enable creation without breaking down the old (- for there is no old structures to begin with). Maybe I was referring more to the geni of the brotherhood. I too sense the brotherhood not only by hands (how it's practically organized) but also with my minds eye (how it has been spirited, what it holds in its being (and that is a vast thing).

What I was really asking then was: am I allowed and welcomed to enter the sphere of the brotherhood's being and work with it? By now, I've figured that I am.
Nefastos wrote: Fri Jul 09, 2021 3:40 pm
Here is the easiest path I can suggest:

(1) After joining any an active lodge, keep attending to its meetings and being active in the discussions in the meetings and in the forum.
(2) After one year of doing this, ask your lodge guide's recommendation and apply for lodge Graal, the lodge that gives practices.
(3) Work through the three degrees of Graal to its hermetic group. While doing this, remain in open discussion like before.
(4) In the hermetic group work intensely with the other colour aspect members of this and other lodges. You won't have a day without duties and spiritual challenges, if you are willing to face them.
Thank you for breaking this down for me, I really needed this at the time. And maybe I'll keep needing it in the future.
If you want to reborn, let yourself die.
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