Degree XXIV — Question Set 3

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Lecture for Degree XXIV
Esotericism and Modern Thought
Life As a Game

"Initiation was a school in which were taught the truths of primitive revelation, the existence and attributes of One God, the immortality of the Soul, rewards and punishments in a future life, the phenomena of Nature, the arts, the sciences, morality, legislation, philosophy, philanthropy, and what we now style psychology and metaphysics, with animal magnetism and the other occult sciences." — Albert Pike.

1. Compare and contrast the curricula and influence of the ancient iniatory schools with those of a present-day university.

2. " deprive the Greeks of those Sacred Mysteries which bound together the whole human race would make life insupportable."
Discuss the relative merits of the Sacred Mysteries and economic competition as foundations for peaceful "globalisation".

3. "Everywhere, and in all their forms, the Mysteries were funereal. They celebrated the mystical death and restoration to life of some divine or heroic personage, though the details of the legend and the mode of the death varied in the different countries where the Mysteries were practised." — Albert Pike.
a. Reflect on bodily death as an inescapable necessity for the maintenance of the balance of Nature.
b. What practical advantages arise from personal belief in restoration to life (reincarnation)?

4. Discuss the proposition that what is currently called "fundamentalism" has little to do with fundamentals but arises from a too literal interpretation of symbolical representations of metaphysical experience.