Reprinted by Blavatsky Study Center

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On Ceremonial

Theosophy:  

"Practical theurgy or 'ceremonial magic,' so often resorted to in their exorcisms by the Roman Catholic Clergy - was discarded by the Theosophists. ...When ignorant of the true meaning of the esoteric divine symbols of nature, man is apt to miscalculate the powers of his soul, and, instead of communing spiritually and mentally with the higher, celestial beings, the good spirits (the gods of the theurigists of the Platonic school), he will unconsciously call forth the evil, dark powers which lurk around humanity - the undying, grim creations of human crimes and vices - and thus fall from theurgia (white magic) into goetia (or black magic, sorcery). ... Purity of deed and thought and can alone raise us to an intercourse 'with the gods' and attain for us the goal we desire." (Blavatsky Collected Writings II, p. 96)

"The Suras, who win their intellectual independence, fight the Suras who are devoid thereof, who are shown as passing their lives in profitless ceremonial worship based on blind faith..." (Secret Doctrine II, p. 93)

Neo-Theosophy:

"That (Co-Masonry) again bringing back the occult use of ceremonial, is to many non-religious people a veritable religion, and prepares them to understand the value of ceremonies, a preparation, as every occultist will see, for the coming changes..." (Annie Besant, Adyar Bulletin, March, 1920, p. 74)

"The ceremonies of each (great religion) interest me profoundly, and I have studied them all with keen pleasure, and can take part in any of them with full earnestness and sympathy." (Annie Besant, Adyar Bulletin, March, 1920, pp. 69-70)