When we think of the word “heritage” we might immediately think of material values that may have been received from the past or handed down to the future.
However, mystically speaking, it is possible to inherit not only that which still does not exist on the earthly plane, but also to build in the present a heritage of spiritual values.
Consequently, I suggest that you reflect upon the meaning Rosicrucians must give to their present life so that the material and spiritual heritage they bequeath to their successors will be worthy of an adept of the Rose-Croix.
Our Material Heritage
What does our material heritage consist of? To answer this question, we must bear three facts in mind: First, that we are members of AMORC; second, that we live in a particular country; and third, that we are citizens of the world.
Our material heritage is therefore threefold.
Applied to our Order, it designates all the buildings which have been erected or converted into quarters for Rosicrucian activities since the beginning of the 20th century. Among these structures, we of course find all the buildings which constitute the various Grand Lodges throughout the world.
We must never forget that we live in a material world and that it is impossible to administer spiritual guidance without resorting to material means.
If our Order owned no buildings, it could not play its part, and, therefore, would have no reason for being. It is therefore very important not only to take care of our structures, but to increase them as well.
As an analogy, the Great Universal Soul animates more and more individuals—almost five billion—for by increasing the number of incarnated personalities, Cosmic Consciousness gains the means to evolve toward its own realisation.
The same principle applies to AMORC, for by increasing the Affiliated Bodies and the Cultural Centres, we give to the Rosicrucian Soul, bodies perfectly adapted to its mission of Light.
What about our responsibility as members of a nation or as inhabitants of a particular country?
First of all, we must fully realise that it is not by chance that there are a multitude of languages and a number of races.
Likewise, the fact that the world is divided into several continents, each made up of different countries, is not the result of an arbitrary cosmic decree. It is a necessity, for Unity on all planes and all levels can evolve only through the process of multiplicity. In fact, such a process increases the number of experiences.
In order to prove this we need only to review our previous statement regarding the Great Universal Soul. It is one in essence but, because of cosmic necessity, it is split into billions of animistic particles.
Our very existence is in the image of multiplicity, for each of us reincarnates a multitude of times in different bodies, different families, different countries, different races, different cultures, and in different religions; preserving, however, deep within our self, the same spark of Divinity.
Thus, notwithstanding appearances, division, difference, and multiplicity serve the great law of evolution when they are channelled into a constructive goal.
This principle is well expressed in the Hymn to Aton, one of the most beautiful symbolic writings bequeathed to us by our Respected Grand Master, Akhnaton.
AMORC’s International Scope
Today, there are French-speaking, English-speaking, German-speaking, Portuguese-speaking, Japanese-speaking Rosicrucians—as well as Rosicrucians speaking the various languages of those countries in which our Order is free to conduct its activities.
But the fact that they are members of AMORC binds them into a common ideal, for each vibrates to a common note—that of Cosmic Harmony.
It is therefore very important that all of us, in the course of our lives, become thoroughly imbued with the beauty, the greatness, and the worth of the country in which we reside.
Thus, Rosicrucian thought will emerge ennobled and enriched, for it shall offer a synthesis of the most positive characteristics of each nation.
It is true that not all nations have the same past and that some nations were founded much more recently than others. But, as the adage states, “age has no bearing upon worth,” for the rose which blooms upon a two-year-old rose bush is just as beautiful as the rose from a fifteen-year-old bush.
What matters is not the magnitude of a nation’s historical past, for most often it is only a succession of struggles and wars, but rather the mystical scope we give to its present.
Thus, regardless of the country in which a Rosicrucian has the privilege of living, he or she must prove every single day that it is possible to rebuild within twenty-four hours that which centuries may have contributed to destroy.
By constantly serving as a humanitarian example, eager to preserve traditional and moral values which constitute the glory of all harmonious societies.
With this in mind, wherever we may be and however great or small are our responsibilities, our duty is to act so that our fellow citizens may evolve while raising the collective consciousness of the nation they form.
Consequently, as Rosicrucians, we must channel the highest feelings which our nation can express politically, socially, economically, and above all mystically.
If we all succeed in doing this in our respective countries, future generations will inherit societies which are distinctive but united in the defence of every person’s rights and duties.
Our Endangered Earth
The foregoing leads me to explain the third aspect of the material heritage we must bequeath to human beings of future generations.
It is a fact that every Rosicrucian is a member of a particular nation, but mystically we are above all citizens of the world.
Consequently, it would be a grave error to behave as a nationalist determined to defend exclusively the interests of one’s own nation.
To return to our previous analogy, it is impossible to play a melody by using one single chord of an instrument. Likewise, humanity will not be able to reach its ultimate goal of evolution—that is, Absolute Perfection—if every nation acts without taking into consideration the welfare of others.
On this level, it is important to understand that, whatever our nationality, we all belong to the same body of humanity.
Therefore, it is obvious that the finest heritage we can bequeath to tomorrow’s children is none other than the Earth itself.
As you know, climate change is a serious concern for us all. Because of self-interest, or selfishness, humanity has despoiled the Earth, and according even to scientists, has made it a greatly endangered planet.
It is, therefore, important that each of us, as Rosicrucians, as members of a particular country, and also as world citizens, be concerned with the future of our Earth. From this viewpoint, we must be perfect examples of respectful behaviour toward Nature.
I know perfectly well that this kind of discussion is nothing new, but today we must choose.
Let us be responsible; let us not allow conscience to fall asleep over problems that it is aware of but does not want to face; and let us give our wholehearted support to those who have the authority to preserve the health of our planet, for the earthly heritage we bequeath to future generations lies in their will to succeed.
Our Spiritual Heritage
As you know, spiritual heritage is based upon the knowledge of the laws and principles which, from time immemorial, have united humanity with the Creator.
We have the honour and privilege of belonging to the traditional Order whose specific mission it is to hand down the knowledge it has inherited from a thousand-years-old past.
To tell the truth, I believe I can affirm that in the West, AMORC constitutes the oldest and most thorough mystical path to spirituality. There are, of course, other philosophical and mystical movements which for centuries have echoed certain religions or traditions, but to my knowledge none of these possess a cultural and spiritual heritage as vast as that of the Rose-Croix.
On the other hand, there is a host of pseudo-mystical orders, societies, or groups which are mostly of recent vintage and only reflect the personal and temporary philosophy of their founders.
Being a Rosicrucian Today
I wish to remind you once again that, above all, being a Rosicrucian means to study and apply the teachings of the Order in every thought, word, and deed.
Being a Rosicrucian also entails working on the spiritual plane so as to set into motion energies capable of purifying and regenerating the collective aura of humanity.
Further, it requires us to meditate upon the great truths of life in order to enlighten those lesser advanced than ourselves upon the path of life.
Finally, it means to pray for each human being to receive the illumination we ourselves are seeking.
To live Rosicrucianism fully is therefore to radiate Light around us and, by our example, to give more and more people the desire to follow the same path we are following.
At this level, there is absolutely no need to be an authority in the scientific, artistic, and literary fields. All that is needed is simply to will it, for if we accept this Cosmic Mission—that is, to guide toward the Light those who still walk in darkness—opportunities to do so shall not be wanting.
On the other hand, the more we invest in this guiding role, the more support and energy we will receive from the Cosmic Masters.
In addition, the more we use this support and channel this energy, the more powerful will be the spiritual legacy for Universal Good that we shall bequeath to the future.
In this sense, the most beautiful thing we can bequeath to those who shall follow us is none other than a pyramid constructed of ideals which, alone, will be sufficient to extricate humanity from the apparent chaos in which it is now immersed.
It is therefore in the Invisible that we must lay the foundations for spirituality, for we must never forget that all—absolutely everything—arises from the Invisible.
As Rosicrucians, we have all the necessary mystical tools at our disposal to carry out this mission. If we do not use these tools, if we are simply content with possessing them, we shall have failed in our duty, and our karmic responsibility shall be considerable at the moment we cross the Threshold to the Higher Initiation.
Therefore, let us be worthy labourers, and casting aside mercenary—even unworthy—thoughts, words, and deeds, let us work earnestly for the cause in which we believe and for which we are here today; that is, the final blossoming of the human Rose upon the temporary Cross of this earthly world.
If we succeed in this undertaking, our children’s children will inherit a world where, for the first time in known history, the ideal of Peace shall be a material and spiritual reality.
Adaptation of “Heritage of the Rose-Croix” by Christian Bernard from the Rosicrucian Digest, 1994 no 1.