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Authors Experience: The Western Mystery Tradition

My name is Robert Barnett, and I author this website with my wife, Karen. In addition to my Christian Seminary education and ordination as a Christian minister, I've also practiced the Western Mystery Tradition for approximately 44 years. This has not been a hindrance but has strengthened my belief in Jesus. I've almost always been more Spiritual than Religious. And the more I learned about "Dogma" in my many years of studying theology and world religions, the more I moved toward Spirituality.


I began my studies of the Western Mysteries at Builders of the Adytum (B.O.T.A.). Builders of the Adytum was founded by Paul Foster Case, who was a member of The Golden Dawn. Around 1980, four high-ranking officers of B.O.T.A. asked me to join them and form a new order called Fraternitas L.V.X. Occulta, or Fraternity of the Hidden Light (F.L.O.). I was initiated shortly after that and became an Adept 5=6 a year or two later. Paul A. Clark, my mentor, was the highest-ranking officer (Steward) of the F.L.O. I  was the Grand Prolocutor General before my retirement on good terms after about 15 years.

After my time in the F.L.O., I focused on Meditation and Contemplation. However, I continue to study and practice the Hermetic Qabalah. In particular, I practice several forms of The Middle Pillar and The Lightning Flash Ritual almost daily. 

A Caution and Warning

Playing God or Genuine Worship

The notion of playing God suggests exerting control over life's fundamental aspects, often without moral or spiritual legitimacy. Within many traditions, including Christian thought, the manipulation of angels or spirits using the Names of God according to personal will would be considered problematic, as it presumes authority over divine beings and the divine will itself.

Invocation, when it arises as an act of genuine worship or to seek harmony with the divine will, embodies a profound respect for the sacred. It is a reverential approach, acknowledging the sovereignty of the divine and seeking to align oneself with the divine attributes of goodness, truth, and beauty. This contrasts sharply with invocation aimed at exploiting divine forces for personal gain—a practice tinged with the overweening pride of hubris. 

Invoking Names for Christlikeness

The invocation of the Names of God and of angels in pursuit of Christlikeness is reverential. In many Christian contemplative and mystical traditions, such as those found within the Western Mystery Tradition (The Middle Pillar Ritual), the goal is not to exert control but to become vessels of the divine will. Invoking divine names in this context is about transformation. It's a spiritual practice aimed at refining one's own nature to reflect divine attributes such as love, compassion, wisdom, and justice—qualities epitomized by Christ in the Christian faith.

Position of the Author of

As a devout Christian with a contemplative practice, I acknowledge the historic and profound role that invoking divine names has played in our relationship with God. This approach to prayer and ritual, rooted in the earliest expressions of our faith, can be a powerful means of grace. 

The intention behind these practices is paramount. It is essential to discern whether the practice serves personal glorification or the higher purpose of honoring and magnifying God's presence in the world. One must reflect on whether these actions originate from self-centered motives or from a sincere commitment to the disciplined pursuit of sanctity. 


•    Deuteronomy 18:10-12: These verses condemn various forms of divination and spirit consultation, which are described as detestable to the Lord.
•    Exodus 22:18: This verse states that a witch should not be allowed to live, reflecting the serious view of witchcraft in ancient Israelite law.
•    Acts 8:9-24: This passage tells the story of Simon the Sorcerer, who believed and was baptized but then tried to buy the power of the Holy Spirit with money, for which he was rebuked by Peter.
•    2 Peter 1:4: This verse speaks about the great and precious promises given to believers, through which they may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

Related Internal Links

Author's Experience with The Qabalah

The Middle Pillar Ritual

The Work of Angels

The Western Mysteries

The Christian Cabalah

Hermetic Qabalah

Tree of Life Part 2

Tree of Life Correspondences

72 Shem Angels

Archangel Tzadkiel

Angelology Interpretations

Shorshei Ha-Shemot

Hermetic Qabalah Authors

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