By Aidan Kelly
[Snip] Hmmm. Strange. Seems perfectly obvious to me that there is a deeper level to the Craft that can fulfill a hunger for spiritual strength, but a good part of it is transmitted by oral tradition, not in books. Or, rather, bits and pieces of the information are scattered throughout many books, but unless you already know the central concept, you cannot recognize them. In another sense, like the Greater Mysteries of Eleusis, the experiences inherently cannot be stated in words. For example, consider Ed Fitch’s wonderful “magic manual,” in which he translated Franz Bardon’s hermetic discipline into terms that make sense in the Craft, and which was finally published by Lllewellyn. You see, there’s a bit of oral tradition, about a certain preliminary experience, that Ed (I think purposely) did not include in the book. Without it, you cannot do any of the exercises in the book (except for the first, easiest ones) and therefore cannot hurt yourself.
Yes, there are Third Degree secrets. No, they are not the silly ones many people think they are. No, they are not the silly rules about initiations and lineages and keeping absolutely everything secret observed by the Gardnerians of the Strict Observance. In a way, those rules are a smoke screen, because I know the Gards do know and use the actual secrets. If you don’t know what they are, that’s because you came into the Craft along a path inhabited by other people who don’t know what they are—which is the real danger of being totally eclectic.