Rosicrucian Writings Online
THOUGHT OF THE MONTH
OPENING THE TOMB
By THE IMPERATOR
[H. Spencer Lewis]
[From The Rosicrucian Digest July 1936]
THERE is one very mysterious, mystical, secret tradition running through the history and esoteric principles of the Rosicrucians which is never completely understood either in its symbolism or practical usefulness until the student has reached the highest degrees. I refer to the opening of the tomb of C. R. C.
It falls to the lot of each group of chief executives of each branch of the Rosicrucian Order throughout the world, periodically in each century, to open the tomb of Christian Rosenkreuz and release therefrom that which has been held in darkness and give to the world that which will constitute the greater light. Not only is the "body" of C. R. C. to be taken from the tomb and after a period of time reburied again to await the next periodical removal, but the secrets preserved in rare manuscripts or carved hieroglyphs on the wall of the tomb, engraved upon pieces of metal, inscribed on jewels and marked with blood on pieces of parchment, are also to be made alive again with modern interpretation and practical application.
Because of this old tradition, which is an established custom and ruling, the Rosicrucians have been known for many centuries as guardians of the tomb and the conservators of the world's greatest secrets. But among Rosicrucians themselves they feel that they are more than guardians of a tomb, for they rejoice in the fact that it is their privilege to open the tomb and to let the imprisoned powers within it enjoy the light of day. It is the bringing forth of knowledge from the tomb into Light, Life, and Love that constitutes the great joy of the advanced Rosicrucians.
It is not to be wondered, therefore, that this high ideal and glorious privilege of opening tombs and bringing out of darkness into Light that which may enjoy the Light of Life and Love, becomes a fundamental desire, ambition, and practice with every real Rosicrucian. He constantly seeks for every opportunity of opening any and every tomb that holds within its enclosure that which should enjoy Light, Life and Love, or that which will bring Light, Life, and Love to others. Contrary to the ambitions of the fanatical occultists of Oriental lands who constantly seek to hide and make secret the higher principles of life and the great fundamental laws of nature, the Rosicrucians seek to reveal rather than conceal. Their only restraint is governed by their knowledge that there are times and seasons for such revelations and that the periodic, cyclic manifestations of the process of evolution govern the periods in each year and each century when certain preserved knowledge and certain revealed wisdom will be given in the scheme of human evolution.
It is natural, also, that the enthusiastic, advanced Rosicrucians in every country and every section of each country would seek for ways and means of carrying out this spirit of opening the tomb and bringing into the Light that which has been held in darkness. Symbolically and allegorically this principle can be applied in many ways. For many years the Rosicrucians in North America, for instance, have been opening the tombs in the hearts and souls of those who are confined in penal institutions or places of correction by giving them such knowledge and such guidance as will enable them spiritually to leave their places of darkness and enjoy the freedom of knowledge and the power that comes with such knowledge. In scores of prisons or similar institutions there are students of our teachings who are being helped and who in turn are helping others and who will some day put into practice for their own betterment and the upliftment of those depending upon them, the principles of our teachings. This is but one phase of the work of our Welfare and Sunshine Circles. But for some time the Sunshine Circles in various parts of North America have been planning to spread their work and increase their activities in a very distinct and unique manner.
For some time the secret Sunshine Circles associated with each of our lodges or chapters have placed small advertisements in newspapers and magazines throughout the continent offering to give spiritual advice and help, practical assistance, free medical and legal advice, vocational and employment assistance to the needy. The replies to these advertisements have been carefully analyzed and investigated and each week or each month sees members of these Rosicrucian Sunshine Circles carrying on their welfare work and bringing sunshine into the lives of persons who may never have heard of Rosicrucianism and without any attempt to proselyte or enlist their interest in our teachings. Not only has help been given in nursing, medical treatment, and business and professional advice, the meeting of sudden emergencies, overcoming of obstacles, but clothing, food, and many other material, practical aids have been given to these persons.
From time to time we have mentioned the activities of these Sunshine Circles in The Rosicrucian Forum and have been encouraging each one of these Circles to enlarge its staff of volunteer workers and to widen the scope of its interests and contacts.
A short time ago we announced that the largest of these Rosicrucian Sunshine Circles, that located in the Los Angeles district and under the direction of Frater George Baldwin, director of the Sunshine activities in Southern California, had decided to take up the great work of bringing joy and happiness into the lives of the shut-ins. We announced that other Sunshine Circles should give thought to this matter also and replies came even from foreign jurisdictions of our Order asking for details as to our American methods of procedure, and we are happy in the fact that the shut-ins in many lands are now receiving a new and interesting form of aid and assistance that brings forth enthusiastic comments from them.
So often we forget that there are thousands of persons in every section of the country who are not actually ill but in dire need for companionship, assistance in solving some of life's problems, enjoying some of the privileges that are man's birthright, and participating in even the most simple and common of every day indulgences which all of us enjoy perhaps so freely and so abundantly that we give little thought to them. Many of these persons are confined to bed, couch, wheel chair, or very often special forms of harness or equipment which makes it necessary for them to lie in uncomfortable positions hour after hour and day after day because of some abnormal condition in their body resulting from accident or other misfortune, and many of these are in poor circumstances dependent upon charity for just food and clothing, or perhaps medical advice, and, too, many of them are in institutions, sanitariums, hospitals, boarding houses, or small furnished rooms separated from friends and relatives and dependent wholly upon an occasional kindly visitor to read to them or to tell them of the things of the outside world or bring them in contact with the greater things of life. Very seldom indeed does anyone offer to take them for a ride in an automobile or for an outing in their wheel chair, or take them into the sunshine or among the trees and flowers, or to see the hills, lakes, rivers, or oceans. They read of the moving pictures, the concerts, the happy things of life, but they enjoy none of them for they cannot go alone and they have no one who takes the time or the trouble to bring these things into their lives.
And so our Sunshine Circle in Los Angeles planned to widen its activities and to include all of the service to the shut-ins that could possibly be arranged. This activity on the part of our Sunshine Circle has grown to such an extent that we are happy to announce that the great convention of the Sunshine Federation of Shut-Ins was held in the Greek Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday, June 7. Our good Frater Gordon Williams, in charge of the shut-in activities, worked unceasingly planning for this convention together with the Sunshine Committee and the advice of the shut-ins themselves. The convention was one of the greatest humanitarian demonstrations ever held in the city of Los Angeles. Over five thousand helpless persons were interested in planning to go to the convention and arrangements were made to assist them. Mayor Shaw of Los Angeles endorsed the plan and read a letter from the President of the United States and from various persons and organizations approving this great service to the shut-ins. The Los Angeles Realty Board, the Los Angeles Non-Partisan League, and the newspapers united to help in the plan, giving great publicity to the affair. The largest of the moving picture studios arranged to send their very best talent to the convention. The Yellow Taxicab Company offered thirty of its cabs to assist, while the Motor Transit Company furnished large buses. Trucks were donated to carry wheel chairs and occupants to and from the great park surrounding the Greek Theater. The special shut-in ambulances, arranged and designed by the Sunshine Shut-In Committee, in the form of sedans arranged to hold one or two cripples in their wheel chairs or on cots, also carried large numbers to the convention. A sixty-piece band donated its services and a band of singers and vaudeville talent from various theaters also participated. A great open-air picnic was held along with the entertainment and amusement. Hundreds of the persons who attended enjoyed their first picnic and out-door pleasure in many years. Food in abundance was supplied and everything that would feed body and mind was provided. There was no attempt at any form of propaganda and no distinctions were made in regard to class or creed but in every word, in every handshake, in every act performed, the spirit of good-will and love for humanity was made manifest. New officers for the Sunshine and Shut-In activities were elected and plans made for extending these sorts of community picnics and parties to all points of the country.
This is something in which we would like to have every true Rosicrucian participate. If you are a physician and want to offer your services in behalf of the Sunshine and Shut-In work, get in touch with the nearest chapter or lodge in your district and offer your services to the chairman. If you are a nurse, or can do practical nursing, or you are an attorney and anxious to offer your services, be sure you do so. If you can spare the time to act as an investigator, or to visit among the shut-ins, the unfortunate, the sick and needy, and bring words of cheer and carry to them something of the practical things they need, or assist in bringing them in touch with other workers who can give them advice or guidance such as they require, get in touch with your Sunshine Circle. If you do not know the name and address of the officers of the chapter nearest you or you do not know the name of your local district representative who can work with you in starting a Sunshine Circle, write to the Supreme Secretary in care of AMORC, San Jose, California, and ask for the name and address of the proper person to contact.
Many of those working in the Sunshine Circles are men and women busy with their own professions and daily affairs, yet they are willing to sacrifice some of their time in behalf of this great work. Only recently I received a letter from a judge of the Superior Court in one of the larger cities of New York State in which he said that busy though he was in his regular court work and in his special court of domestic relations, he would be glad to give legal advice and assistance to those who were directed to him by our Sunshine group in his locality. Letters like this come to us constantly from our members and we want to see more of this volunteer work carried on during the coming years so that all of our Sunshine and Shut-In Circles will render more and more efficient help throughout the continent.
Remember that AMORC as an institution and as a foundation has grown to be one of the largest organizations of its kind in the Western World as it has been in other countries, solely because it has so unselfishly rendered service to others and because we know the truth back of the principle that as we offer ourselves to the Cosmic as channels for good, so the Cosmic will remember us in our needs and requirements. Until you learn the lesson of giving before receiving, or offering before you ask, or being ready to serve before pleading to God for help, you cannot know the joy of being in tune with the Infinite and in harmony with the laws of God and the Cosmic.
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