Then the priest answered & said unto the Queen of Space, kissing her lovely brows, and the dew of her light bathing his whole body in a sweet-smelling perfume of sweat: O Nuit, continuous one of Heaven, let it be ever thus; that men speak not of Thee as One but as None; and let them speak not of thee at all, since thou art continuous! ~ Liber AL I:27 ~
The Gnostic Mass is a eucharistic rite celebrating the creative human will as the expression of the highest good. Although similar in visible structure to the ceremonies of the Roman and Orthodox Christian churches, this vibrant and dramatic rite stands apart as it celebrates the sublimity of the operation of universal forces, which move and infuse every person directly and uniquely. This ceremony serves as a dramatic inspiration for religious reverie for the congregation. It does not claim to intercede for a congregation that must submit to its authority in order to receive the blessings of a higher power vicariously through a clergy. Each individual is their own star, beholden to no other deity than its own perfect glory. The Gnostic Mass is performed to lend beauty, intent, and tradition to that process.
The culmination of the Mass is the consumption of the sacrament as prepared by the ritual officers during the ceremony. This sacrament consists of a cake of light and a small goblet of wine. Each participant stands in turn before the shrine, consumes the host, proclaiming: “There is no part of me that is not of the gods.”
The Gnostic Mass also forms the foundation of many of the church’s sacramental rites such as baptism, confirmation, marriage, and ordination. You can find the full text of the ritual here or view a performance of the Mass below. Parents, please note that while our celebrations of the Gnostic Mass welcome children of any age as congregants (provided they are old enough to sit still for a one hour Mass), the ceremony does include some nudity. While we feel that this is done tastefully and with symbolic import, the combination of children, religious ritual, and nudity deserves a heads-up and we would be remiss to have this facet of the ceremony appear as a surprise.
During this time of isolation from the events we would rather attend in person, we offer two different celebrations of the Gnostic Mass below for you to enjoy. Sincere thanks to our friends at Horizon Lodge in Seattle, Washington and at Swirling Star Lodge near Fort Lauderdale, Florida for sharing with us these beautiful videos.
Horizon Lodge (NSFW version)
Swirling Star Lodge
Listen below to Aleister Crowley reciting the first two Collects from Liber XV, The Gnostic Mass!
But to love me is better than all things: if under the night-stars in the desert thou presently burnest mine incense before me, invoking me with a pure heart, and the Serpent flame therein, thou shalt come a little to lie in my bosom. For one kiss wilt thou then be willing to give all; but whoso gives one particle of dust shall lose all in that hour. Ye shall gather goods and store of women and spices; ye shall wear rich jewels; ye shall exceed the nations of the earth in splendour & pride; but always in the love of me, and so shall ye come to my joy. I charge you earnestly to come before me in a single robe, and covered with a rich headdress. I love you! I yearn to you! Pale or purple, veiled or voluptuous, I who am all pleasure and purple, and drunkenness of the innermost sense, desire you. Put on the wings, and arouse the coiled splendour within you: come unto me! ~ Liber AL I:61 ~