No attainment soever is officially recognised by the A.·.A.·. unless the immediate inferior of the person in question has been fitted by him to take his place.
The rule is not rigidly applied in all cases, as it would lead to congestion, especially in the lower grades where the need is greatest, and the conditions most confused; but it is never relaxed in the Order of the R.C. or of the S.S.: save only in One Case.
There is also a rule that the Members of the A.·.A.·. shall not know each other officially, save only each Member his superior who introduced him and his inferior whom he has himself introduced.
This rule has been relaxed, and a "Grand Neophyte" appointed to superintend all Members of the Order of the G.D. The real object of the rule was to prevent Members of the same Grade working together and so blurring each other's individuality; also to prevent work developing into social intercourse.
The Grades of the Order of the G.D. are fully described in Liber 185*, and there is no need to amplify what is there stated. It must however, be carefully remarked that in each of these preliminary Grades there are appointed certain tasks appropriate, and that the ample accomplishment of each and every one of these is insisted upon with the most rigorous rigidity.
Members of the A.·.A.·. of whatever grade are not bound or expected or even encouraged to work on any stated lines, or with any special object, save as has been above set forth. There is however an absolute prohibition to accept money or other material reward, directly or indirectly, in respect of any service connected with the Order, for personal profit or advantage. The penalty is immediate expulsion, with no possibility of reinstatement on any terms soever.
But all members must of necessity work in accordance with the facts of Nature, just as an architect must allow for the Law of Gravitation, or a sailor reckon with currents.
So must all Members of the A.·.A.·. work by the Magical Formula of the Aeon.
They must accept the Book of the Law as the Word and the Letter of Truth, and the sole Rule of Life.** They must acknowledge the Authority of the Beast 666 and of the Scarlet Woman as in the book it is defined, and accept Their Will† as concentrating the Will of our Whole Order. They must accept the Crowned and Conquering Child as the Lord of the Aeon, and exert themselves to establish His reign upon Earth. They must acknowledge that "The word of the Law is Thelema" and that "Love is the law, love under will."
Each member must make it his main work to discover for himself his own true will, and to do it, and do nothing else.‡
He must accept those orders in the Book of the Law that apply to himself as being necessarily in accordance with his own true will, and execute the same to the letter with all the energy, courage, and ability that he can command. This applies especially to the work of extending the Law in the world, wherein his proof is his own success, the witness of his Life to the Law, that hath given him light in his ways, and liberty to pursue them. Thus doing, he payeth his debt to the Law that hath freed him by working its will to free all men; and he proveth himself a true man in our Order by willing to bring his fellows into freedom.
By thus ordering his disposition, he will fit himself in the best possible manner for the task of understanding and mastering the divers technical methods prescribed by the A.·.A.·. for Mystical and Magical attainment.
He will thus prepare himself properly for the crisis of his career in the Order, the attainment of the Knowledge and Conversation of his Holy Guardian Angel.
His Angel shall lead him anon to the summit of the Order of the R.C. and make him ready to face the unspeakable terror of the Abyss which lies between Manhood and Godhead; teach him to Know that agony, to Dare that Destiny, to Will that catastrophe, and to keep Silence for ever as he accomplishes the act of annihilation.
From the Abyss comes No Man forth, but a Star startles the Earth, and our Order rejoices above that Abyss that the Beast hath begotten one more Babe in the Womb of Our Lady, His Concubine, the Scarlet Woman, BABALON.
There is no need to instruct a Babe thus born, for in the Abyss it was purified of every poison of personality; its ascent to the highest is assured, in its season, and it hath no need of seasons for it is conscious that all conditions are no more than forms of its fancy.