Our Order blog originally started off as a place for us to share various tidbits of information and things that we have learned, on an occasional basis. A few years ago, our ISP experienced an outage, and much of our blog and its posts were lost. We had a few of them backed up in various documents, and so we restored those few, but activity has been pretty sparse. We certainly try to express our sense of humor and not take ourselves too seriously in our April 1 posts, and that will certainly continue. However, as our Order continues to grow and expand, we find ourselves answering more and more questions about who we are to interested and potential members via email. So, we have decided to try to post a bit more regularly, covering various information about our Order, its work, and structure.
One of the first things that we as founders of the Order did, was to come up with a mission statement for the Outer Order. That mission statement is as follows:
“The mission of the Order of the Golden Dawn in the Outer is to aid, assist, and encourage all who seek initiation into the Western Mysteries in achieving Knowledge and Conversation with one’s own Holy Guardian Angel for the purpose of divine illumination by working primarily within the framework of the traditional Golden Dawn system.”
We felt it important to include a couple of things that we all felt strongly about, including getting in touch with one’s HGA (and none of us are Crowley-ites, imagine that!), and following the framework of the traditional Golden Dawn system. When we formed the Order, we each came from a different branch of the Golden Dawn tree, that is, we each came from different Golden Dawn orders and systems. In founding this Order, we attempted to use the structure, form and teachings of the original order (at least as much as we possibly could) as a starting point. From there, we added a version of the Abramelin system, broken down into smaller segments throughout the Outer Order grades, for the work of getting in touch with one’s Holy Guardian Angel. Other things tended to work their way into the curriculum as we evolved, but the base is entirely Golden Dawn (at least, as much as it could be so).
The governance of our Order, like that of the original, is that it is ruled by 3 Chief Officers, the Praemonstrator, the Imperator and the Cancellarius. To summarize and keep it short, the Praemonstrator is in charge of the teaching of the Order (or delegation thereof) and is in charge of the Knowledge Lectures. The Imperator is in charge of the order of the Order (running meetings, keeps the Constitution and By-Laws, and ensuring their enforcement) and is in charge of the Rituals. The Cancellarius is in charge of the running of the Order (applications, minutes, dues, etc.) and is in charge of all documents and organization related to the Order.
The Outer Order is under the direct charge of the Hierophant, who is assisted by the Heireus and the Hegemon. He/She is in charge of all members from Probationers through the grade of Portal, as well as the Outer Order ceremonies and rituals and making recommendations for advancements to and through those particular grades. The Hierophant schedules meetings and initiations, and is in charge of the Outer Order officers, including contributing suggestions as to who will serve in what offices, as well as being in charge of ritual ‘practices’ and all things pertaining to the conduct and performance of initiation ceremonies. He/She is the “Expounder of the Mysteries” to those in the Outer Order.
The Inner Order is under the direct charge of the Chief Adept, who is assisted by the 2nd and 3rd Adepts. The Chief Adept is in charge of assigning, compiling and submitting to the Praemonstrator, any changes to the existing curriculum, or in submitting new courses of teaching, systems of magic or new work that is introduced to the Inner Order teachings (much more on this in a future post regarding our Inner Order and its structure). He/She is in charge of all members of the Portal Grade (you will note some overlap of the Portal members between the Inner and Outer Orders) through Adeptus Exemptus as well as the ceremonies and rituals and making recommendations to the Chiefs for advancements to and through those grades.
In summary, within our Order (like most GD Orders) there are actually two separate Orders (an Inner and an Outer), each overseen by a different primary officer (the Hierophant and the Chief Adept), and then these two Orders are governed and overseen by the 3 Chiefs. The 3 Chiefs initiate the energies of the Tree of Life for the Order as a whole, and symbolize one of each of its pillars. To the Praemonstrator, the Pillar of Mercy, to the Imperator the Pillar of Severity, and to the Cancellarius the Pillar of Mildness or Equilibrium. And while the Chiefs have a certain amount of control to veto or change the running or structure of either order, both of our Orders are run in a democratic fashion. Each has its own constitution and by-laws, which are reviewed once each year by the general membership. Changes to by-laws may occur at anytime where there are enough voting members to proceed, and changes to the constitution may be presented once per year to the general membership. The primary reason that the Chiefs have a veto power, is simply to ensure the health and survival of both Orders. Not all members have the experience and high level view of the Order as a whole in quite the same way, and so any changes denied by the Chiefs are done for the good of the Order and the membership, not for any control or desire to run a dictatorship.
Here is a chart depicting the overall governance and structure of our Order. Tune in next time when we will examine our ‘Order of the Golden Dawn in the Outer’ in more detail.
Yours in the Great Work,
V.H. Frater M.T.O.
Praemonstrator, Order of the Golden Dawn