Freedom is the keynote
Freedom is the keynote of the individual who is facing the second initiation and its aftermath—preparation for the third initiation. Freedom is the keynote for the world disciple today, and it is freedom to live, freedom to think and freedom to know and plan, which humanity demands at this time.
The initiation (that of the Transfiguration) which we are next to study is one of the most important of them all. From one particular angle, it is peculiarly related to the fifth Initiation of Revelation and to the seventh Initiation of Resurrection. All three are concerned with freedom: freedom from the personality, freedom from blindness, or freedom from all the seven planes of our planetary existence—the planes which are sometimes referred to as the planes of human and superhuman evolution. You will have noted that lately I have been emphasising an aspect of initiation hitherto little emphasised—the aspect of freedom. The Path of Initiation has at times been called the Path of Liberation, and it is to this essential aspect of the initiatory process that I am seeking to call your attention. I have [Page 685] pointed out continuously that initiation is not really the curious mixture of self-satisfied attainment, ceremonial, and hierarchical recognition as portrayed by the major occult groups. It is far more a process of excessively hard work, during which process the initiate becomes what he is. This may entail hierarchical recognition, but not in the form usually pictured. The initiate finds himself in the company of those who have preceded him, and he is not rejected but is seen and noted and then put to work.
It is also a graded series of liberations, resulting in the attainment of increased freedom from that which lies behind in his experience; this carries with it the permission (soul enjoined or given) to proceed further on the WAY. These freedoms are the result of Detachment, Dispassion, and Discrimination. At the same time Discipline enforces and makes possible the hard work required to pass the grade. All these four techniques (for that is what they are) are preceded by a series of disillusionments which, when realised and comprehended, leave the aspirant no choice but to move forward into greater light.
I would like to have you study initiation from the angle of liberation, looking upon it as a process of strenuously attained freedoms. This basic aspect of initiation—when realised by the initiate—ties his experience into a firm relation with that of the whole of humanity, whose fundamental struggle is the attainment of that freedom "whereby the soul and its powers can unfold and all men be free because of an individually attained freedom." (The Rays and the Initiations
, pp. 684-85)