The Role of the Teacher

Last night I had an extended conversation with one of the Institute for Hermetic Studies longest running and largest patrons. We speak weekly about the usual: esotericism, his particular practices, and current projects being undertaken by myself and others and where they fit into the long-term vision for the Institute. Over the last few weeks we have been spending a great deal of time discussing the physical world and what role it plays in  “spiritual” awareness.  Besides the usual stuff, I simply said, “As Jean Dubuis pointed out, it takes a great deal of energy to keep us here.  Life is all about energy.  If our Light does not turn into Life, then it is a cold light.  And it is when this life energy burns with real desire that we experience Love – the so-called Rosicrucian Trinity of Light, Life, and Love.  But love has three aspects:  agape, philia, and eros.  Agape is for mystics, philia for humanitarians, but eros, that is for magic – or any activity that manipulates human behavior on some level.  It is also the key to spiritual awakening even for the Greek philosophers.”

We then meandered around the nature of the Elements for a bit, when I stopped him and said, “Let’s look at this simply. Like everyone else, you want more life, and more out of life. You want your time and experiences here on terra firma to be of value – even if just for you.”

He agreed, and I went on, “Look around and ask yourself, who has helped me find my way? Who has helped me create meaning out of my life? Notice I say create, because the only meaning life has is the meaning we give it. We are not secret agents on a mission. We are artists creating our way with and through time with the talents and treasures we have available to us.”

“Remember that exercise in the back of Kabbalah for Health and Wellness, the one about the teachers?  Now, think of one person who you own your entire journey on this path to. Put them at the center, standing next to you, or above you floating in space.  Now, pick one person who shaped your intellectual and philosophic views and place them before you.  Pick one who really demonstrated the ability to transform and change things in a powerful way, a real initiator, even if not in the formal sense. Place them to your right side. Pick another person, this one who demonstrated emotional wellbeing, compassion and nurturing in a healthy way, and maybe even genuine psychic abilities – place them behind you.  Finally, a fifth person, this one who was solid, reliable, and able to see things clearly – a real ‘salt of the earth’ type of person. Place them to your left side.”

He paused for a few minutes to do this exercise. I added that it was alright to have more than one person in the quarters of the circle around him.

“This is your initiatic chain. This is the line of spiritual influences that have shaped your life. Each of them received help from one or more persons on their journey, and now you have received help as well. In turn, you help others and this chain of interconnect transmission continues, even if not formally recognized as such and given some name to be known by.

Be grateful for the help you have received, and be generous in helping others on their journey when you can. This is one of the secrets of hermetic transmission.  Secret because you need to recognize it, to see it for yourself, it cannot be given to you like a ritual initiation.  These people are more precious to you than Hermes, Christ, or any figure from the past, because they are here with you now, in this world, in this time, and have helped you.  Always remember them. They are your initiatic chain, your connection to the invisible.”

If you would like to learn more about the above exercise above details can be found in Kabbalah for Health and Wellness.

If you would like to support our current fundraising campaign to keep Kabbalah for Health and Wellness in print in a new edited and corrected Tenth Anniversary Edition, you can make your contribution using the link below.


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  1. Practical and to the point! The challenge; actually do the exercise, being courageous enough to consider the possibility that it will work, see what the results are compared to what you are experiencing now with your current routines/practices. Of course, this does presume that you can hold that most courageous of imperatives; You want the truth more than you want to be right.


  2. It occurs to me this that this is very adaptable to other realms of life. For instance a man might surround himself with the various women from his life who have ‘initiated’ him into the infinite aspects of ‘the Femine’ – obviously, vice versa. Or again applied to the path of one’s chosen profession or business. Or the ones who have initiated one into the living web of Family however that might be defined… Etc etc…


  3. Prof. Tammy T. Orunaboka · · Reply

    Every spiritual life practice requires devotion and the hope to achieve success at the end of the exercise. Create time to study the Master piece of directions and practice accordingly with persistent, hard work and determination , the result must be successful.


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