I'm consistently amazed by how fluidly these initiatory rituals progress, each lesson transforming into the next, building upon and elevating the stakes of those before them. I'm certain that this would be the case no matter which order I decided to use to go through them; they would develop their nuances all the same with a a different flavour of progression.
All the horizon-broadening "perspective alchemy" (Oriens' term) that I had spent the last two months meditating on and working with shifted into an uncanny focus with Amaymon's evocation. In the visions I was led to use the new tools I had acquired to compete with my Shadow before an array of my past selves, in order to prove which characteristics I wanted to exalt and define me at this time. At its completion I acknowledged and fondly respected the Shadow as a powerful internal ally, who would always be keeping me on my toes and challenging me regardless of how intellectually comfortable I feel with my foundations. We were both turned to ash and then were compacted tightly, being heated and tempered until we emerged as a clear prism. The light of my HGA shone through the faces, and I took turns gazing through them, each one bridging me to a past self that manifested as their own prism, one face shining at me while the others were directed at myriad other incarnations, ancestors, patrons, and forces.
Our interactions with each other took place only in the form of prayer. I prayed for my past selves and they for me. I prayed for their friends, family, and spirit contacts and they for mine. I prayed for the fulfillment of their purpose, Will, and Word; for their connection to and service of the divine, and they for mine. I felt so consumed and "enflamed" with prayer in these moments that I lost all thought of temporality; it was as if we were all on the same playing field, all "present" and "current" regardless of when and where we manifested, all striving for these fruits at the same time in a kind of peace and unity as opposed to feverish lust. We then all prayed to "our HGA"—or rather, the different ways he has made himself known to us—and then with him, and then for the World, for Spirit, and for All until everything was too bright and I awoke on a lower astral level with Amaymon again. He taught me about intricacies of prayer I had never even considered before, aggression, joy, and the "mutability of passions" in magic, and how to perceive what he called the many flames that encircle the hearts of others, what they stand for, where they come from, and how they can be worked.
Mentally I felt immensely at peace once I had concluded with the dismissal and my thanks, but physically I was exhausted. My dreams that night were all lucid; interestingly enough in one of them I ended up meeting a spirit who was waiting at some crossroads-terminal to be contacted and engaged by a magician she was fond of and had noticed because of their offerings. I made a note of her in my journal and forgot about her until later that evening when a friend let me know that she had encountered a spirit with her exact description, right down to the smallest detail, and had welcomed her into her broader court. I have a feeling that I encountered this spirit because I was made especially sensitive to the "connections of connections of connections" displayed in the ritual. Subsequent dreams in the nights following have often been lucid as well, and those that weren't were often divinatory or prophetic in nature.
These rites have been a fascinating ride from the beginning. I plan on applying for my Black Work evaluation soon and then beginning the White Work in the next month. Additionally, after a month of meditation, prayer, and some insightful omens, I've joined the Novitiate of the Order of St. Cyprian of Antioch and have excitedly begun my studies with its curriculum. I am eager to bear and work with my new commitments and to deepen my understanding of the broader context from which the enigmatic and powerful saint arises from.