THE GOD REPRESENTED EMBLEMATICALLY AS A MAN WITH A BULL'S HEAD, HIEROGLYPHICALLY DENOTING THE SUN IN TAURUS. IN ONE HAND HE HOLDS THE SYMBOL OF ETERNAL LIFE, IN THE OTHER THE EMBLEM OF POWER, ABOVE WHICH APPEARS THE NAME OF THE GOD IN HIEROGLYPHICS, WHICH, BY A SINGLE COINCIDENCE, IS COMPOSED ALMOST ENTIRELY OF MASONIC EMBLEMS.
his eyes no sooner accustomed to the of the place, than he before him a huge iron door, on which is this inscription: 'He who would attain to the highest and most perfect state, and rise to the sphere of absolute bliss, must be purified by fire, air, and water.' He had scarcely read these words when the door turned on its hinges, and he was thrust into a vast apartment also shrouded in gloom. (Arnold)
Then began the wanderings of Rhea in search of the remains of Bacchus, her body begirt with a serpent, and a flaming torch in her hand, uttering as she goes wild and frantic shrieks and lamentations for her loss. Those already initiated join in, and mix their howlings with hers, blended with mournful music. By means of a certain mechanical contrivances (see Salverti's "Philosophy of Magic," vol. i, Chapter X; also, Brewster's "Natural Magic") the plains of Tartarus were presented as realities before his eyes. He beheld the flames amid which the wicked suffered the purification by fire. Behind him yawned a dismal and dark abyss, from which
issued a burning wind and voices of woe and suffering. Approaching the brink he looks down, and sees some suspended on the sharp points of the rocks, and others impaled on a mighty wheel, which turned without ceasing, thus working their way toward heaven through the purgatorial air. The purification by water was represented by the horrors of a gloomy lake, into which souls less guilty were plunged. Apuleius also alludes to this purification by fire, air, and water. He says, "I approached the confines of death, and, having trod on the threshold of Proserpine, and I returned therefrom, being borne through all the elements."
As the aspirant thus wanders among these startling scenes, surrounded by the wild cries and lamentations of the goddess and her train, at a signal from the hierophant a sudden turn is given to their feelings. The gloom begins to disappear, and their cries of grief are changed to joyful and triumphant shouts of "Eurekamen, eurekamen!" ("We have found it!") The euresis, or discovery of the body, is then celebrated, and the mangled form of the murdered sun-god restored from death and darkness to life and light and power.
Another iron gate, heretofore concealed, is now thrown open. The Orphic hymn is chanted, and a splendid spectacle of the Elysian fields and the bliss of the purified presented. The four-and-twenty attendants of the hierophant prostrate themselves before him, and, amid strains of solemn music, the neophyte receives the benediction and instructions of the hierophant. (See Rev. A. C. Arnold's "History of Secret Societies"; Bishop Warburton on the "Mysteries"; Oliver's "History of Initiation"; Apuleius's "Metamorphoses"; and Salverti's "History of Magic")
The Mysteries of the Cubiria, or Kabiri, of Samothrace, were to the same effect, and were derived from the same Egyptian source—the Mysteries of Osiris and Isis—which they perhaps followed more closely. The candidate, after a term of probation, was purified by water and blood, made to sacrifice 16
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