Rosicrucian Religion

Rosicrucian Religion

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Rosicrucian Religion
Although some people believe that the Rosicrucian following is relatively new considering other much older beliefs, Rosicrucians claim much earlier beginnings for themselves than can be documented. One group even claims ties to Thutmose III, about 1500 B.C. in Egypt (Ancient Mystical Order Rosae Crucis, 1915).
Their founder is generally claimed to be Christian Rosenkreuz, supposedly born in 1378 and died in 1484 (Ancient Mystical Order Rosae Crucis, 1915). However, the Encyclopedia Britannica, says, "Some regard the story as a statement of fact and hold Christian Rosenkreuz to have been the found of the order. More generally it is held to be a mythical explanation of the order and Christian Rosenkreuz is not a real person at all, but a symbolic character".
Rosicrucians are found world-wide as well as in North America. One faction in the U.S.A. known as AMORC (Ancient Mystical Order Rosae Crucis) is located in Atlanta, Georgia where my uncle is an active Lodge member.
I became more curious about my uncle's involvement after the death of his aunt, (my great-aunt), Carrie, who also was Rosicrucian. Little to my knowledge, my uncle was greatly influenced by her beliefs in practicing this following.
When hearing about the Rosicrucian, one automatically images a picture of a cross and a rose. I asked my uncle, Nathan, what this symbol represented. He stated that the symbolism includes a Christian-looking cross, with either a rose in the middle, or a cross surrounded by roses (Benowitz, 2007). However, the cross of the Rosicrucians is not the cross of Christianity. The "Rosy Cross" does not represent any connection with the Christian crucifix. To them [the Rosicrucians], the cross represents, "the body of man" with the rose symbolizing "man's soul unfolding and evolving" (Benowitz, 2007). This unchristian concept is followed through into their doctrines. To the Rosicrucians, God is an impersonal being composed of seven spirits, manifesting themselves as a "triune godhead" (MacGregor, 2000).
"The Rosicrucian Cosmo Conception", reads, "...The seven spirits before the throne...collectively, they are God and make us the triune godhead...the Father is the highest initiate among the humanity of the Saturn..." (MacGregor, 2000). Truly, the Rosicrucian trinity is not the Christian Trinity. In the pages of the Bible, the One, True, Eternal God has revealed Himself in three ways, as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

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In the Rosicrucian lessons, new members, called Neophytes, are taught to petition the "Forty-two principal gods...expressions of the principal god, the Sun-God, Amen-ra" (MacGregor, 2000). Christians could have no part in this idolatry, as their Holy God the Father is not some "highest initiate among the humanity of Saturn"(MacGregor, 2000). "God is Spirit; and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." (John 4:24).
The Bible is considered relatively different to the Rosicrucians than Christians. For example, the book of Genesis is dismissed as a "beautiful poem". Genesis 1:1, which really reads, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" has been rewritten to read, "Out of the ever-existing essence (of space) the two-fold energy formed the double heaven." Hardly similar!
The Genesis account of the fifth day details the creation of marine life, and birds. The Rosicrucian's description of the fifth day of creation differs greatly to include the creation of an Atlantis-like Lemurian epoch in which the differentiation of the sexes took place.
Before that, the Rosicrucians teach man had been hermaphrodite (both male and female), and previous to that he had been without sex (MacGregor, 2000). The combination of the theory of evolution with the Bible account of creation is very contradictory of the Christian faith.
To my uncle, Rosicrucian teachings were secretly taught throughout the ages. Almost everyone on the planet at the time of its creation believed in polytheism. After he spoke of the origin of Rosicrucian, I asked how this following has changed and shaped his life. He told me that he enjoys the study of mysticism as he is now considered a "practicing mystic", or "someone who formulates and seeks an intimate relationship with God which bridges the objective and cosmic consciousness" (Benowitz, 2007). I questioned of the challenges that he faces when following this teaching. He replied with the shocking answer that "everything is a challenge" (Benowitz, 2007). He detailed further by saying, "We are considered walking question marks; always questioning things. [When beginning], you forget everything that you are ever taught and begin to learn everything for yourself. We do not degrade anyone's belief, but we respect them. For example, Muslims beliefs are not disrespected. Matter of fact, Rosicrucian followers are from many different faiths including Judaism, Muslim, Buddhism, and so on" (Benowitz, 2007).
I asked if there were any rituals or practices associated with this belief. My uncle shortly answered this by giving the obvious answer of, "many" (Benowitz, 2007). "In the September, Rosicrucians celebrate the New Year" (Benowitz, 2007). This Rosicrucian holiday is much different than in January by most of the world.
While visiting the website, I had a couple more questions for Nathan. I noticed the term community quite often, and was eager to learn the meaning of this term. He stated that "probably, (in first step of mysticism), the same as humanity is all formed of the same body, we are all individuals but are also connected to each other" (Benowitz, 2007).
The other question included the involvement of women to the Order. Are they allowed? Uncle Nathan said boastfully, "Absolutely, my Grandmaster is a ruler; Julie Scott" (Benowitz, 2007). He later stated that there were many famous historical people that were a part of the Order of Rosicrucian. Some examples include Leo de Vinci, Nicolas Copernicus, Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Fran Lloyd Wright, Mozart, Clark Busay, Walt Disney, and Henry Ford. (Walt Disney caught me by surprise!)
Rosicrucian groups are occult orders, and as such make their central and most important teachings available only to members. In like measure no examination of documents and archives is allowed, and no independent corroboration of the claims of the various groups, especially their claims to ancient origins and European alliances, is possible.
Rosicrucianism is a modern movement begun in 1868 by R. W. Little that claims ties to an older Society of the Rose and Cross that was founded in Germany in 1413 by Christian Rosencreuz. The number of its followers is uncertain. The Ancient Mystical Order Rosae Crusis (AMORC) was founded in San Jose, California, in 1915 by H. Spencer Lewis. Both sects could be classified as either fraternal or religious organizations, although they claim to empower members with cosmic forces by unveiling secret wisdom regarding the laws of nature.
After learning what Rosicrucian beliefs were, I became curious into how this following compared with my belief of Christianity. I found that some terms seemed almost identical as others seemed totally opposite.
I enjoyed speaking with my uncle of the Rosicrucian Order and also visiting the Atlanta Rosicrucian Lodge. I have to admit that I felt very uncomfortable but open-minded as I listened to the lectures from the Grand Master. I am not used to such a subtle atmosphere.
I thoroughly enjoyed researching Rosicrucian as it more broadened my intellect of the world religions. I have come to have a new found respect, not only for Rosicrucian's beliefs, but for all religions equally.

References
Ancient Mystical Order Rosae Crucis. (1915). Mastery of life. Retrieved Friday, July 27, 2007,
from http://www.rosicrucian.org/about/mastery/index.html
MacGregor, L. (2000). Rosicrusians: is it even a religion?. Retrieved Friday, July 27, 2007, from
http://www.macgregorministries.org/cult_groups/rosicrucians.html
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