Initiation, the other side
I covered in a previous blog post how people might navigate the daunting job of asking for initiation (should that form part of the path they chose) and that’s a question I get asked quite regularly. A question that comes up far less frequently is what it is like to initiate somebody? Now that’s one to ponder.
The first thing that comes to mind is that it’s both a huge responsibility and an enormous privilege - somebody is trusting you with their spiritual development, that’s not something to be taken lightly.
Ultimately it’s the Gods who initiate, we are but their human conduits and hope to do the occasion justice. There is a distinct sense of reverence and a seriousness of purpose, there is joy and mirth, you might get nervous, and you prepare…and then you prepare some more.
For me this preparation spans both, mundane tasks and magical ones: you clean the space that will serve as temple, you scrub the bathroom and make sure there is enough toilet roll, you stack the fridge and prepare sleepovers and so on. On the day I try to approach even those regular chores with a sense of purpose and service. I also prepare on a personal level to make sure I can adopt the right frame of mind. There might be a ritual bath, meditation time, maybe even fasting.
Every initiation is different and yet somehow the same. Each individual brings different hopes and fears to that circle’s threshold and yet there are very archetypal forces at play which are eternal. As Priestess I offer myself up as a channel for the Gods to bring their power to the rite and make the initiation a beautiful, meaningful occasion for the candidate. But it is between them and the initiate to determine what happens “on the inside”.