We have an extensive and dedicated proctoring system in the Order of the Golden Dawn. Proctors are qualified Adept, Portal, and Philosophus members, who are personally assigned to an initiate to help them with their Golden Dawn studies. These persons work with you to develop a bond that not only strengthens the initiate but also strengthens our Order. A proctor will assist you with your correspondences, answer questions, and assist in guiding your personal path to a level of achievement in your spiritual growth and magical empowerment. You can go to them for guidance in your studies as they have been through all of the elemental grade initiations, and they are there to motivate you throughout your advancements.
Our proctoring system also leaves the student with the responsibility of maintaining diligent contact with their proctor. Since our order is small and we focus intensely on the quality of the student-proctor relationship, we only allow proctors to have a certain number of students. This limits the number of members we can accept by the number of available proctors. If a candidate is accepted into the order and is initiated, but fails to maintain diligent communication with their proctor regarding their studies, the student may be demitted to allow an opening for a more serious student. Maintaining solid communication with your proctor will also be a requirement for being eligible to test for advancement to a higher grade. We do not allow students to advance who only reach out to their proctors when they feel they are ready for examination. This is in the best interest of the student and ensure that they are receiving a well rounded education in the occult arts. Through experience, we have learned that being accountable to one’s mentor to report on current studies and workings helps the initiate to develop at a faster and much more thorough rate. Sometimes initiates just do not know what questions to ask, especially when one is just starting out on the path, but frequent communication opens up many channels and the proctor is better able to assist the student with a reservoir of oral tradition that may remain untapped otherwise.
In order to become a proctor one must first be approved by the Collegium of Adepti and work under the direction of the Praemonstrator of the temple. Our proctoring program is actually considered another level of study as each applicant to the program is required to pass a course of study in proctoring and personal interaction. A proctor is a respected and proven member within the Order and not all members choose to become a proctor. Some of the duties of a proctor are to answer the student’s questions, give them the opportunity of interaction with someone who has the same interest in unity with Divinity, help them with the challenges of the grades, assist them with their studies and in reaching their goals, and especially to instill in them the feeling of fraternity which we all share.
Our Order stresses the importance of helping. The return of Light to the Divine is emphasized here. One of the opportunities we have to return what the Divine has bestowed on us, is to help others who are also in search of that scintillating Light. The path of Darkness that leads to the Light isn’t an easy path. Having an experienced person who has already traversed it, helps you overcome some of the detours, roadblocks and potholes along the way.
Some proctors have study sessions at their local Temple or Sanctuary, or even in their own homes, for their students. Others spend time communicating by phone or by e-mail. The beauty of this system is that you always have someone who will help you personally with your growth in the Order. All that you have to do is pick up the phone, or send mail or e-mail, and they will be there to provide support and feedback.
All in all, when you are initiated you have the support of someone who has years of experience in Esoteric and Magical studies; one who has passed through the Grades and represents the highest level of achievement in Golden dawn studies. Someone who has the same kind of daily challenges that you might have – children, job, health, family troubles, juggling all of these responsibilities along with trying to spiritually evolve. It isn’t an easy path but it is the most rewarding journey you can ever embark on… The Great Work and unity with the Divine.