The Latest Home Temple Questions 2

>1. What are the seven spirits of God?

Actually, there is some disagreement about that. The Home Temple uses the menorah, not because there are any specific spirits that are invoked, but because of its association with temple Judaism. However, there is some indication in scripture that the temple menorah was associated with “the seven spirits of God” Revelation 4:5 "From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. Before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God." Since the temple menorah had seven lamps, this seems like a reasonable association. As to what the “seen spirits of God” actually ARE, speculation abounds. They may be seven aspects of the Holy Spirit (See Isaiah 11:2) or seven archangels, or seraphim or cherubim. Or they may represent the seven (anciently known) planets. Or all of the above. For example, they could represent angels who also govern planetary bodies who are also associated with specific aspects of God's spirit. If anyone has the definitive answer, I don't know it yet.

>2. Do the three bases of the menorah have the same symbolic meaning as the three candlestands in a Masonic Lodge?

Unfortunately, I was careless with the preceding answer. There are FOUR bases on the stand and FOUR kabbalistic worlds. So the answer would be no. However, for the record, Bishop Kiezer is active in a modified and synthesized form of Masonry called Pansophic Freemasonry which is open to both genders. I know little about it and have not yet participated in it. I only say this only to make it clear that I don't expect he'd be in the least adverse to appealing to Masonic symbolism if the occasion warranted.

>3. How does Jesus Christ fit into the Shema Israel?

He's not specifically mentioned in that particular prayer. “Hear oh Israel – the LORD thy God, the LORD is one” For that matter, he's not mentioned specifically in the Lords Prayer. But he's clearly central to the Liturgy.

>4. In re your description of the resonators of the power of the ritual, is this what is meant by vibrations?

I don't think I actually used that word. I said: “An emphasis is placed on the musical tones and specific sounds intoned, as these are believed to be important resonators of the power of the ritual” What I meant is that specific musical tones and vocal sounds are believed to have various spiritual effects which augment the other spiritual benefits of the Mass. This is a rather complex field in which I am only a neophyte. I hope to improve my knowledge of it.

 >5. Do you ever actually hear a voice or voices at your liturgy, or is everything that takes place interior?

No, I haven't. The only time I've quite distinctly heard an actual disembodied voice, that I recall, was during a morning family devotional. We were quite throughly Roman Catholic at the time, and several of us heard a rather resonant “Amen” after the Fatima prayers during the Rosary. It was a bit startling. I've often had inner impressions of various sorts during prayers and liturgies, but except for that occasion nothing on the physical plane.

>6. Is the nacham a ritual of Judaism from the Kabbalah or from the time of Christ?

 I'm afraid I don't know if the gesture itself is ancient or recent. “Nacham”in Hebrew indicates repentance or submission to God. The right arm (representing the ego or lower self) is placed across the chest touching the left shoulder, and covered by the left arm touching the right shoulder while making a slight bow. This indicates the submission of our personal will to that of God. I'm told by several from the Eastern Rite that this is how they receive communion – which is ironic, as it is the gesture adopted by the modern Western Rite to indicate “I'm not receiving communion, just give me a blessing”.

>7. Your understanding of the nature of sacraments is actually much better than the understanding a lot of Catholics hold, though it is the same understanding that is taught in our catechism.

Thank you.

>8. According to Gershom Scholem, I believe Merkabah mysticism was being taught at the time Christ walked the earth. Kabbalah, however, is from the Middle Ages. The Roman Catholic Church condemned the mysticism borrowed from the Kabbalah.

Traditional Jewish practitioners, of course, believe the concepts of the Kabbalah date back to Adam, but it certainly didn't exist in present form till the middle ages. On re-reading, I see how my sentence on this was confusing. Jesus, the early Jewish mystics, and the early Jewish Gnostics had access to a body of mystical teaching which by that time was called Merkabah, and which only later became the seed for the more extensive concepts of Kabbalah. Although the Roman Catholic condemnations don't persuade me, as I find many Kabbalistic concepts very helpful and profound, I'd be interested in reading them.

>9. Are ascended masters what Catholics call saints?

The concept is similar and there is probably some overlap in the groups, but ascended masters are primarily those of various esoteric traditions who are believed to have achieved great spiritual progress and enlightenment, and who guide and help humanity. The concept is, I believe, primarily a Rosicrucian/Theosophical one.

>10. What is the difference between theurgy and magic?

As I understand it, Theurgy is the work of using instruments or vehicles of divine power to achieve divine purposes – particularly union with God. Some esotericists would describe the Mass as an example of Theurgy. Magic tends to indicate that the instruments, vehicles and purposes of the operation may be less than divine in some way. Some would say that Theurgy is always under the umbrella of “Thy will be done”, whereas magic is more of a direct imposition of the human will. However, at some levels it is more difficult to distinguish the two, as the Higher Self is an expression of the divine.

>11. I have downloaded and printed Dr. Keizer's book on Wandering Bishops. In there he refers to C. W. Leadbeater as a saint. I'm sure you know that he had some difficulties with a young boy, or with several young boys, depending upon the source of reference. Yet Dr. Keizer has labeled Leadbeater a saint in the book. While it is true that we have had bad popes, we have not canonized them.

Actually, I only recently became aware of Leadbeater, and about the accusations against him I only know what I could quickly Google. Leadbeater is by no means a “saint” in the sense of having passed through a complex canonical process proving his heroic virtue – having his own feast day – being mentioned in the prayers of the Mass – being invoked for intercessory prayer, etc. No such process exists for the Independent movement. As far as I can tell, Kiezer uses this term informally and generally meaning “mystic” – someone advanced in esoteric knowledge and ability. Leadbeater certainly was this. However, Bishop Keizer only labels Leadbeater a “saint” in one of the photos, and in the text says that he was “…more scientist than saint”. If the worst of the accusations against him are correct (and I have no way of knowing that they are) then he certainly should not be regarded as heroically virtuous. I understand that the Roman Catholic Church doesn't canonize the Borgia, but there have certainly been several individuals who have not made it through the process (or partially through the process) without considerable opposition and accusation. I'm sure you can think of a couple names.

>.12. Have many Catholics joined the Home Temple Movement? Have former Catholic priests joined the Home Temple Movement?

I know of some Catholics that have joined. I know of several people who were ordained in other jurisdictions and denominations who have joined, but I'm not directly aware of any Catholic priests. But as I said, this is a small, home-church movement, and I don't know the exact number who consider themselves affiliated.

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