Note – On December 18 2010 we paid tribute to the Third Anniversary of the Chartering of Ormus Lodge, an Ancient & Primitive Rite Lodge of Memphis-Misrain within the free communion of Congregational Illuminism by performing a mystery play written by the founding Lodge facilitator. This was followed by several ecclesiastical Workings, by permission of the Facilitator. TAG 33° 90°96° A&P R MM.
THREE YEAR ANNIVERSARY
Ormus Lodge - 3 Year Anniversary
The Ritual of the Golden Thread
-- Synopsis --
There is an underlying tension playing out between tradition and innovation. The two extreme poles are 1) slavish adherence to handed down teachings and 2) complete disregard for past wisdom. At first, MAMBO, ORMUS and MARKOS represent #1 and THE OPPOSER represents #2. As the play progresses, the tension is slowly released through the actions and dialog of the characters leading to a harmonic balance - the Golden Thread.
-- Dramatis Personae --
Mambo - High Priestess of the Lwa
Ormus - High Priest of Tahuti
Markos - Bishop of Alexandria
The Opposer - Blind old stranger
-- Scene 1 --
(NARRATOR is standing on stage, near the audience. MAMBO, ORMUS and MARKOS are standing together. THE OPPOSER is standing alone)
The Mysteries are timeless, eternal and unchanging. The secrets are to be guarded, protected and hidden. Only the worthy may enter, only the fit may pass, only the wise may be raised to glory. This, our dear guests, is what you have heard before, what has been propagated by the Orders of Antiquity, what has been echoed by the acolytes of Tradition.
(Raising their hands to the sky and looking up reverently) We hold these truths to be self evident.
(Pointing at them, mockingly) Ha! You fools. We shall see about that! (Walking proudly back and forth in front of them) I, the Opposer, shall put you to the test!
-- Scene 2 --
(All exit except for MAMBO and NARRATOR)
Here is Mambo V, High Priestess of the Lwa. She was born into the traditions of Dahomey, taught the secrets - mouth to ear - from her own Grandmother and fully initiated to serve the spirits and her local community.
(Sets the altar for Ayizan and performs table work)
(Enter THE OPPOSER)
What is this I hear? Prayers to invisible spirits?
I honor Mambo Ayizan - patron of initiation into the Vodou. And tell me sir, who are you and what brings you here to my temple door at this late hour?
I am known by many names. I travel to and fro upon the face of the earth, doing as I wish. Now tell me - this...(said sarcastically) Ayizan...how do you know she hears your prayers?
I know because she responds to them.
Hmm, responds to them? Do you mean you hear voices in your head? You know what they say about people that hear voices in their head, don't you?
No, it's not like that.
Then what do you mean? How does this...(again sarcastically) Ayizan...RESPOND to your prayers?
Sometimes she comes to me in dreams and...
(Interrupting her) Dreams? I see, so your so-called "proof" that this so-called "spirit" actually exists and ANSWERS YOUR PRAYERS is that you have...dreams about her? (Crosses his arms and shakes his head disapprovingly)
[MAMBO] Wait! You didn't let me finish!
With all due respect, I think I've heard enough.
Old man, with all due respect, I think it is not only your physical sight that is wrapped in darkness.
Whoa! She strikes like a serpent when she gets angry!
(Calmly) I am not angry. You're just not open to what I have to say. So I ask you to leave me in peace.
I will grant you your wish, but before I go, tell me one last thing...what good has this Ayizan - or for that matter ANY of these so-called spirits that you call - ever done for you?
A loner like you might find this hard to understand. I serve the Lwa to serve the community. People come to me when they are ill, when they are mourning, when they are confused. I give them healing, I give them peace, I give them clarity. So you see, old man, I do not serve the Lwa for myself alone, but for the entire community - young and old, rich and poor, those with sight and...those who are blind.
(MAMBO kisses THE OPPOSER gently on the lips and then exits)
(THE OPPOSER stands alone for a moment, reflectively touching his lips where MAMBO kissed him, then exits as well)
-- Scene 3 --
Here we see Ormus, High Priest of Tahuti, preparing for his daily Rite in honor of his god. The year is 46 CE. The place is Alexandria, Egypt. We can hear him now as he intones the Sacred Invocation...
I invoke Tahuti, the Lord of Wisdom and of Utterance,
the God that cometh forth from the Veil.
O Thou! Majesty of Godhead! Wisdom-crowned Tahuti!
Lord of the Gates of the Universe! Thee, Thee, I invoke.
O Thou of the Ibis Head! Thee, Thee I invoke.
Thou who wieldest the Wand of Double Power! Thee, Thee I invoke!
Thou who bearest in Thy left hand the Rose and Cross of Light and Life:
Thee, Thee, I invoke.
Thou, whose head is as an emerald, and Thy nemmes as the night-sky blue! Thee, Thee I invoke.
Thou, whose skin is of flaming orange as though it burned in a furnace!
Thee, Thee I invoke.
Behold! I am Yesterday, To-Day, and the Brother of To-Morrow!
I am born again and again.
Mine is the Unseen Force, whereof the Gods are...
(Enter THE OPPOSER)
(Interrupting) Gods you say? Ha!
(Startled by the sudden interruption, ORMUS drops his wand, which lands at THE OPPOSER's feet) Wh..who are you? And how did you get in here! (looking around)
(Picks up the wand, examines it with his hands, then smelling it, says) Ummm, cedar, imported from Lebanon no doubt. What wonderful quality. Ya know, I haven't been there in AGES.
(Regaining his composure, he snatches the wand out of THE OPPOSER's hand) You are an intruder in the Temple of Tahuti! You have no right to be here! Leave at once before I call the guards!
Well, I hope you have better luck with calling the guards then calling the gods (snickers).
Blasphemer! You dare to mock the gods in this holy place? You will surely be struck down.
(Mockingly braces himself for being struck down, then shakes his head and laughs) You don't know what you're talking about. Your god is not listening to you.
I am Ormus, the High Priest. I know all the secrets of this Temple.
Secrets? There are no secrets!
(Incredulously) Where are you from old man? All who live in the great Land of Khem know there are secrets kept in every Temple. These are the Sacred Mysteries
I'm not buying it Ormus. Those who have secrets either have something to hide, or seek to gain power over others. And tell me this - what happens if someone discovers these precious secrets through trickery of their own? I mean, I gained entry to this Temple, didn't I?
One may gain knowledge of the secrets, but one has to gain understanding of the truth. Passwords, grips and signs are for those who still cling to the form but have not yet tasted of the essence. Come closer old man, I will show you.
(THE OPPOSER moves toward ORMUS. ORMUS then places his hands upon THE OPPOSER's heart)
The Word is Creative.
(THE OPPOSER remains on stage for a moment, standing in the Sign of the Pentagram, then exits)
-- Scene 4 --
As our story progresses, we see Markos, a zealous missionary to the Land of Egypt, an Apostle of the Mystery Religion which recently emerged in the Land of Palestine. Markos has come to spread the new teachings and establish a community here in Egypt.
(Kneeling in prayer)
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
(As the last line is being spoken, THE OPPOSER enters and MARKOS rises)
What is this that you say? Deliver us from evil?
Indeed, our Lord and Master has come to set the captives free.
Well, YOUR Master isn't doing that great of a job then, is he? I have traveled far and wide and can assure you, there are many slaves in all the lands.
It is true sir, there are many slaves - slaves to pride, slaves to greed, slaves to jealousy, slaves to sin...
Sin? What is sin?
Sin is doing that which is against God.
Oh, you're one of THOSE people, praying to imaginary gods. Believe me, I've met my share of your kind recently.
Not "gods" sir, but God. There is only one.
How preposterous. One God? Ha!
Yes, one God, the Father, who has incarnated on this earth in the person of Yeshua of Nazareth to save us all from sin.
Oh, this is getting interesting....you preach One God, and yet speak of two. Do you not see the contradiction here? How ridiculous!
Not two, but three-in-one - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - one God. God's ways are above our ways. It is not for us to judge. You must have faith.
Faith? Faith you say? What you REALLY mean is you have no explanation for this absurdity. Look - (holding up a finger for each "one" as he says them) One plus one plus one is three...not one!
Yet all three fingers are part of one hand. So you see, it is not as ridiculous as you think.
So anyway - what has your three-in-one, (scratching head) or three...or one...god done for you?
Well, as I've said, God has manifested in the flesh in the person of Yeshua of Nazareth. I have beheld him with my own eyes. I have spoken with him directly. It was he who sent me here to the Land of Egypt to spread the good news of salvation. Through his death and resurrection we have all been saved, if only we have faith.
Wait, wait, wait! This god-man you speak of is dead? (Sarcastically) Well he can't be very helpful now, can he.
He took upon himself all the sins of the world and was crucified on a cross. On the third day, he was resurrected. Some of my brothers and sisters have seen him raised. He has conquered death and sin for all of us. And he has sent his Spirit to guide us until he returns.
You've been sipping too much of that good Palestinian wine. I don't believe for one moment in any of this nonsense.
(THE OPPOSER begins to walk away. MARKOS holds him back)
Wait, let me share something with you with you before you go.
I think you've shared enough.
No, even if what I have said does not make sense to you, it does not matter. This is important.
Alright, what is it?
(MARKOS lays his hands upon the head of THE OPPOSER. After a pause, he removes his hands and looks THE OPPOSER directly in the eyes)
The Kingdom of God is within you brother. Seek and you shall find, knock and the door shall be opened unto you.
(MARKOS and THE OPPOSER exit)
-- Scene 5 --
(MAMBO, ORMUS, MARKOS and THE OPPOSER enter)
The Mysteries are timeless, eternal and unchanging. The secrets are to be guarded, protected and hidden. Only the worthy may enter, only the fit may pass, only the wise may be raised to glory. This, our dear guests, is what you have heard before, what has been propagated by the Orders of Antiquity, what has been echoed by the acolytes of Tradition. Yet we have entered a new era - an era of science, an era of technology. Many of the deeply held convictions of times gone by are seen to be outmoded belief systems based on ignorance and superstition. Yet the understandings of today are not themselves completely immune to error. Science can be just as dogmatic as religion. Materialism can be just as myopic as blind faith. We can neither slavishly adhere to handed down teachings, nor dismiss them out of hand with no consideration for past wisdom. A balance must be struck. Ormus Lodge is both traditionalist AND futurist in scope. We maintain a genuine respect for the ancient teachings while simultaneously being exploratory and innovative. We view the light of the gnosis as a continual, dynamic stream, stemming back in antiquity and flowing ever forward throughout the aeons of Space/Time. We welcome you to explore with us, as peers and fellow illuminists. We hold no dogma, we have no hierarchy. Our goal is Illumination. Our approach is both experimental and experiential. Our doors are open to all. Now if you would please open the box you were given and examine it's contents. (Allow each quest to open and see what is inside) You have had this key with you for the duration of this Rite. Let it be a reminder to you of the True Key, the Key that nobody can give to you, the Key within yourself that unlocks the doors that lead to Illumination. (Dramatic pause) We now want to share with you some final thoughts, out of character, just as we are, no longer acting, which we hope you find inspirational and useful to your Path.
(Selected readings from each of the actors)
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