Holy Shift

Djaloki’s trail through the fulfillment of the Ancient Prophecies.

Initiation to the Age of Maturity

Posted by djaloki on April 24, 2008

 

 

  • This ritual is inspired from various tribal age group systems and rites of passage, particularly from the Dogon of Mali in West Africa and the Tzutujil Maya of Guatemala in Central America, as well as initiation rituals of the Western esoteric tradition.
  • The Age of Maturity is a social group of the following age system, based on a twenty-one year cycle:

 

Age

Group

Main focus

Initiation age

0 – 21 years

Youngsters

Learning basic skills

Soon after birth

21 – 42 years

Extended Adolescents or Young Adults

Developing expertise in specific skills

Early 20’s

42 – 63 years

Mature Adults

Service and spiritual craftsmanship

Early 40’s

63 – 84 years

Elders

Developing higher wisdom

Early 60’s

over 84 years

Venerable Ones

As they wish

Early 80’s

 

  • The applicants to this ritual are women and men in their early forties.
  • The officiant Minister is preferably someone who has previously been through this initiation, ideally an elder, sixty-three years old or more.
  • Members of the audience, called “the witnesses”, represent all age groups in the applicants’ community.
  • Content’s details of some elements of the ritual may be designed and adjusted according to the place, the community and the people’s preferences and sensibilities. This ritual can be made to last from a few minutes to several hours, especially by playing with the intervention of community members and the community celebration.

 

Purpose of this ritual

 

Commitment of the applicants to serve their community as best as they can and to grow in general knowledge, wisdom and spiritual craftsmanship, as the community recognizes them as mature adults.

 

Outline of the ritual

 

  1. Preparation
  2. Opening
  3. Trial of the applicants as accomplished Young Adults
  4. Commitment of the applicants
  5. Community recognition of the applicants as Mature Adults
  6. Minister’s address
  7. Silent meditation
  8. Possible interventions by community members
  9. Final Blessing and closing of the formal initiation
  10. Community celebration

1. Preparation

 

Applicants:

      Personal cleansing and purification

      Fast, sexual abstinence and silence prior to the ritual

      Personal review of one’s life so far and meditation on the new phase ahead

 

 

Community:

      Preparation of a special piece of clothing, jewelry, insignia or object as gift for each applicant and a short text explaining the symbolism of the gift

      Identification of the individuals who will present the gifts to each applicant during the ritual

      Preparation of possible interventions during the ritual (witness accounts, reflections, poems, music, songs, dances, sketches, films, slide shows, etc.)

      Preparation of the community celebration (may be as simple as a drink and a round of hugs, or as complex as a big event with various activities, feast and party).

 

 

Minister and helpers:

      Identification or appointment of helpers and Council of Elders

      Identification of possible sanctions against abusive critics

      Identification of applicants and listing of their names

      Preparation of the certificates for each applicant

      Preparation of relevant opening invocation and final blessing

      Choice of symbolic objects (candles, artifacts, clothing, etc.)

      Choice of music tracks and/or chants

      Preparation of Minister’s address

      Personal cleansing and purification

      Cleansing and energizing of the space just before the ritual

      Preparing and conducting the ritual (the applicants’ name list and their number are kept with a pen by Helper 1 during the ritual and the certificates are kept by Helper 2)

 

 

2. Opening

 

A special place is reserved for the applicants, where they can be seen by the witnesses (the audience).

The witnesses take their place first,

then the Minister and helpers,

then the Council of Elders,

and finally the applicants, in an orderly fashion, guided by a helper.

 

Greetings from the Minister who also presents the purpose of the ritual.

 

The Minister reads the opening invocation (e.g. formulation of pure intention, acknowledgement of the Divine Presence, invitation to the ancestors and guardian spirits of the community and its members, prayer for spiritual assistance and positive energy).

 

Music and chanting appropriate to the theme of initiation to adult maturity.

 

3. Trial of the applicants as accomplished Young Adults

 

Minister: Our community is in need of more mature adults, women and men of leadership whom we can trust and we can lean on. They must already be masters in their personal fields and committed to offer their abilities to serve our community. They must also be committed to continuous growth in knowledge, wisdom and spiritual craftsmanship. In exchange, we, as a community, will recognize them and we will honor them.

 

Helper 1 (with the list of names): We have here ­­­ x  (number of applicants) young adults candidates to adult maturity, but they have not yet been tested on their skills, their achievements and their merit as supposedly accomplished young adults, which is what they claim to be.

Minister: To be called to service as a mature adult represents a great responsibility, for the well-being of our whole community will depend on it. One must pass the test of eligibility through the review of one’s past deeds, words and thoughts as a young adult… Dear applicants, you are brave to be willing to be evaluated in truth and humility. We will now proceed to the fist part of the test. You will focus your awareness inward and you will ask your memory to review your life as a young adult, focusing on what you have thought, said and done. Then you will ask your inner conscience to assess if you are eligible to adult maturity, or if you need more time to make amends or to work on something particular on yourself. Note that you are not asked to be perfect in your eyes. We all have our flaws and our shadows. However, there is a minimal mental, emotional and spiritual development, as well as a sense of responsibility you must have attained before you can be considered as mature adults. Your inner conscience knows and will tell you. You have one minute for this part of the test.

 

One minute of silence while the applicants are questioning their inner conscience.

 

Minister: Dear applicants, if any of you has received the message from his or her inner conscience that he or she is not ready yet for adult maturity, please leave this room right now. You will be allowed to apply again, at any time this initiation is performed in the future. Our community greatly appreciates and honors your courage and honesty. We still love you as young adults.

 

Moment to allow the applicants who want to leave to proceed.

 

Helper 1 (with the name list) strikes the names of the applicants who leave.

 

Minister: Dear applicants, you must now pass the second part of this test. The members of our community, present or represented here today, have watched you and lived with you during your years as young adults. It is their time now to say if they feel they can trust you as mature adults. If any member of any age group in the community voices a concern about your eligibility to adult maturity, the Council of Elders may still allow you to be initiated, if they unanimously judge it appropriate. If not, you will be asked to leave the room and your case will later be examined by the Council, which will decide if you can apply next time this initiation is performed. Abusive critics who will have prevented someone from going through this initiation without reasonable motives will be sanctioned. (The Minister may tell what the sanctions against abusive critics are.)  Dear applicants, stand up and face the community… Now, if anyone in the community, present or represented here today, believes that one or several applicants are not ready to be considered as mature adult, please say it now. If the reason of your concern is not appropriate to be revealed in public, just mention the name of the applicant without revealing the reason. You will be asked to justify your motives later, before the Council of Elders.

 

A few moments to allow concerns to be voiced and the concerned applicants to leave the space, except if the Council of Elders unanimously allows them to stay.

 

Helper 1 (with the name list) strikes the names of the applicants who leave.

 

Minister: Dear applicants, you have passed the test of your own conscience and of our community. You are now eligible to be considered mature adults. You may sit down.

 

4. Commitment of the applicants

 

Minister: As mature adults, a lot will be asked of you by the community. You are expected to step up into the roles of leadership that fit your abilities as the needs emerge. Your commitment to serve will be crucial for the well-being of our people and our planet. You are the heart that gives the community its basic strength. Your are the vital link between our Elders, who are the guardians of our memory, and our Youth, who are the seeds of our hopes. It is your duty to honor and respect everyone, in all age groups. You are also expected to continuously learn and expand your consciousness, your self-awareness, your specific skills, your general knowledge and your abilities for compassion and spiritual craftsmanship.

 

Helper 1 (with the list of names): Applicant __________ (name of first applicant on the list that is not struck), please stand up.

 

The applicant stands up.

 

Helper 1: Do you commit to live as a mature adult, as best as you can, in honor and respect for yourself, for our community and for all beings and things manifest?

 

Applicant (loudly enough so all witnesses can hear): Yes, I do.

 

Helper 1: Please sit down.

 

Helper 1 goes through the same procedure with all the applicants whose names are not struck on the list.

 

5. Community recognition of the applicants as Mature Adults

 

A helper guides the applicants into a central location where they face the audience.

 

Helper 2 (with the certificates) explains that each applicant will receive a gift from the community symbolizing his or her adult maturity and a certificate issued by the Council of Elders. The gift may be a special piece of clothing, jewelry, insignia or another object. Then Helper 2 reads the text of the certificate without naming any specific applicant, except if there is only one applicant.

 

Helper 1 (with the names) invites the witness with the gift for the first applicant on the list to come in the center, to read or explain the symbolic meaning of the gift, and to offer it to the applicant in the name of the community.

 

Helper 2 gives the certificate to the applicant and hugs him or her.

 

The witnesses may applaud.

 

The same procedure is done with all the applicants.

 

A helper guides the applicants back to their seats. Meanwhile, there may be music or chanting by the audience.

 

6. Minister’s address

 

7. Silent meditation (a few minutes)

 

8. Possible interventions by community members

 

As prepared by the community.

 

9. Final Blessing and closing of the formal initiation

 

The Minister reads the final blessing (e.g. gratitude for the success of the ritual, blessing for the applicants, for the helpers, for the audience, for the rest of the community that is not present, release of the spiritual entities invited at the opening invocation, reconnection with mundane life).

 

Festive music.

 

Applicants, now recognized as mature adults, leave first,

then the Council of Elders,

then the Minister and helpers,

then the audience.

 

10. Community celebration

 

As prepared by the community.

 

 

 

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