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Baptismal Exhortation

(Delivered at the conclusion of a baptism ceremony)

During the course of this ceremony you have created a unique bond with the sponsors who have stood at your side for this “symbolic second birth.” One of the more striking elements of that bond is that your sponsors have sworn to defend your freedom. This is a rather broad statement that deserves some explanation.

Right after your sponsors were asked to confirm this obligation they were then asked as a consequence to lead the congregation in a recitation of our church’s creed. We can see from this that the manner of defense is religious in nature. It’s not necessarily a physical defense or a political one, though those manners of action are not excluded. Principally, sponsors are obligated to defend the freedom of the baptized by instructing them in this creed, helping them not only to memorize it but to internalize it for themselves.

All that we do as Thelemites is toward the aim of securing the liberty of the individual. With that liberty in place they may attain to the holy work of accomplishing their own will. Our creed then is a formula of this ambition and duty. Its adherent recognizes the Sun and the Earth as godly powers, liberating themselves from pandering to an invisible and fickle deity. The fact that a child results from parental union and that our church’s message of Light, Life, Love and Liberty is an inalienable birthright stands in constrast to the “miraculous” birth of the saviour of slave religion and the innate unworthiness of its followers.

The formula goes on, but I will keep this brief and trust that the tutelage under your sponsors, under your clergy, and under your own genius will gird you with this creed. It is the backbone of our church. May it serve as your own spiritual backbone, as well. With it you may stand firm as you make your own way through the world and radiate your unique light as a gift upon all:

I entered in with woe; with mirth
I now go forth, and with thanksgiving,
To do my pleasure on the earth
Among the legions of the living.