Ceremonial Magic, as a means to attainment, has in common with all other methods, Western or Eastern, one supreme object in view — identification with the Godhead; and it matters not if the Aspirant be Theist or Atheist, Pantheist or Autotheist, Christian or Jew, or whether he name the goal of his attainment God, Zeus, Christ, Matter, Nature, Spirit, Heaven, Reason, Nirvana, Asgard, No-Thing or No-God, so long as he has a goal in view, and a goal he is striving to attain. Without a goal, he is but a human ship without port or destination; and, without striving, work, WILL to attain, he is but a human derelict, rudderless and mastless, tossed hither and thither by the billows of lunacy, eventually to sink beneath the black waters of madness and death.
The radical magi encountered a world wherein one world-image was locked in place—not just the geocentric cosmos but the whole Christian orthodox value system that went with it. Their subversive purpose revolved around the project of a free circulation of imagery, a breaking-up of the stasis and the creation of a more responsive model. The single world-view of orthodoxy was seen as stifling, tyrannical, oppressive. Inasmuch as the self interiorized this view it reproduced the oppression on the level of the subjective. The hermeticists opposed the very singleness of this worldview with a contradictory multiplicity, a critical form of “paganism” based on difference.
Hakim Bey, The Obelisk
A “Christian” of that order ought to be put under restraint, and not allowed to associate with mankind. He carries a moral malaria with him, which poisons the air. He suggests evil to minds which have not thought it. He is a dangerous hypnotist, while pretending to be a disciple of Christ.
In 1712 the last execution for witchcraft occurred in England; in 1714 witch trials were abolished in Prussia. In 1715 an Italian Jesuit missionary, Castiglione, arrived in China; in 1716 the Chinese abolished Christian teachings. In 1717 Freemasonry was formalized, with the establishment of the first Grand Lodge in London.
“I give you my word as a Christian: when we go in we’ll treat the place with the respect it deserves.”
Steven A. McKay, Knight of the Cross: A Knights Hospitaller Novella
“The three years’ ministry of the Christian Master ended with His death and, these refer to the three degrees of the Craft which also end in the mystical death of the Masonic candidate and his subsequent raising or resurrection.” [via]
“As every Christian is taught that in his own life he must imitate the life and death of Christ, so every Mason is ‘made to represent one of the brightest characters recorded in our annals’; but as the annals of Masonry are contained in the volume of the Sacred Law and not elsewhere, it is easy to see who the character is who is alluded to.” [via]
“If you examine it closely you will perceive how obvious the correspondence is between this story and the story of the death of the Christian Master related in the Gospels; and it is needless to say that the Mason who realizes the meaning of the latter will comprehend the former and the veiled allusion that is implied. In the one case the Master is crucified between the two thieves; in the other he is done to death between two villains. In the one case appear the penitent and the impenitent thief; in the other we have the conspirators who make a voluntary confession of their guilt and were pardoned, and the others who were found guilty and put to death; whilst the moral and spiritual lessons deducible from the stories correspond.” [via]
“We shall see presently that that philosophy is not only consistent with the doctrine of every religious system taught outside the ranks of the Order, but that it explains, elucidates and more sharply defines, the fundamental doctrines common to every religious system in the world, whether past or present, whether Christian or non-Christian.” [via]