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F.A.Q. - Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

 

1. What is the Temple of Starlight®?

2. What kind of organization is the Temple of Starlight?

3. What are your aims?

4. What do you mean by "magic" and "spiritual sciences"?

5. Where is the temple building located?

6. What is your viewpoint on magic?

7. Are you affiliated with any other organizations?

8. Are you a religion?

9. What are initiations?

10. I am already a member of a spiritual movement. How does this relate to becoming a member of the Temple of Starlight?

11. What is meant by a "contacted Institute"?

12. Is your training a Kabalistic one?

13. Are your trainings compatible with modern life?

14. Why do you wear robes?

15. Do I learn how to do rituals?

16. Do I get a personal tutor?

17. Am I free to leave the institute whenever I wish?

18. How long will it take me to become a First Degree Initiate?

19. What? Five years?

20. Is the Temple of Starlight a commercial organization?

21. What are the costs of the training?

22. How does the decision making process work?

23. Will the training make me psychic?

24. I’m already psychic, how will it affect me?

25. Do you offer coaching?

26. What about the copyrights?

27. What are your privacy rules?

28. History

29. Leave "in good standing".

30. Guest teacher

31. Who is Ina Cüsters-van Bergen?

 

1. What is the Temple of Starlight®?

The Temple of Starlight is a modern Western Mystery Institute. The curriculum deals with the so-called Western Mystery Tradition, a curriculum of esoteric heritage, consisting of exercises and pro-sciences who aim at the ultimate goal: integration of the psyche and soul and a direct knowledge of the spiritual realities which underlie manifestation, and in this way speed up personal development. 

 

2. What kind of organization is the Temple of Starlight?

We are a Dutch Foundation, and thus do not have members. Enrolling in our training programs means that you become an affiliate of the Magical Order of the Temple of Starlight. Training modules are paid per semester or per module. In this way every participant remains in full control about the costs and can vary the intensity of their participation dependent on their personal circumstances.

We offer training based on the Western Mystery Tradition. We are organized in a loose structure to avoid any sectaries, and to develop independency in our affiliates. We do not interfere with their private life or their beliefs.

 

3. What are your aims?

The Temple of Starlight is a non-profit organization who aims at helping to spread the spiritual praxis in an ethical way to all who want to experience their benefits, regardless of religion, sex, nationality, race, age, social status.

The training helps people to develop as a person and as a spiritual being, by means of techniques from the Western Mystery Tradition. The goal is to develop from your mission in life, to anchor your core values in your life and to become your-Self.

 

4. What do you mean by "magic" and "spiritual sciences"?

Magic is the Science of the Sacred that was and is taught in Western culture. At the end of the Renaissance, when the division between science and religion took place, three archaic sciences – Alchemy, Magic, and Astrology – found no place in the new structure, and the knowledge of these techniques were taken under the care of the so called "Secret Brotherhoods".

Magic is simply the Yoga of the West. It has the same ultimate goal as the Eastern systems: that of service to, and ultimately union with the Divine, no matter how we define the term (or not, as the case may be). Its methods are especially suited to Western students. The spiritual sciences are the tools that allow us to pursue this path of spiritual development. Some of these tools are meditation, contemplation and ritual.

 

5. Where is the temple building located?

We use a temporary building located in Rotterdam. The Temple Training takes place on a monthly basis. We have English speaking groups. The Temple Retreats are organized in the Netherlands, but also on invitation in Germany, Belgium, Romania and the United Kingdom. For special occasions we rent space.

The Solo Magical Training is an online event. This training is designed in such a way that you can participate from your home. Contact between supervisors and trainees is through email and skype. The Solo Magical Training is in German and English.

 

6. What is your viewpoint on magic?

Our Western culture has shamanistic roots going back thousands of years into history. In ancient Egypt, Babylon, Greece, and in pre-Christian Europe temples existed that educated people to priest-magicians. Magic is the spiritual art to use I-magi-nation to cause positive changes in consciousness and in the lives of people.

We serve the forces of the Light. The aim of our training is, ultimately, to enable the student to become a conscious conciliator between high spiritual forces and the earth.

 

7. Are you affiliated with any other organizations?

The Temple of Starlight is not dependent on any other organization on the earth-plane. As an organization, we do not take any stand on political or religious issues. As an institute we come from the Golden Dawn Tradition, through the lineage of SIL (Society of the Inner Light) and SOL (Servants of the Light).

 

8. Are you a religion?

We are a spiritual-philosophical training institute. We offer training that invokes sacral experiences. There are many paths to the Light, and all true Paths deserve respect. Our journey of development is marked by initiations.

One of the first things our trainees learn is tolerance and understanding of spiritual movements and religions. We do not pass on a specific religious opinion to our affiliates and we do not put any pressure on them to conform themselves in any way.

 

9. What are initiations?

The Temple of Starlight works with a system of degrees. These degrees are connected to stages of inner spiritual development. Getting a degree is not a goal of its own (a degree is not a diploma) but a sign on the spiritual path that someone is working in a specific phase of the development process. Initiation degrees are typical for the Western Mystery Tradition.

 

10. I am already a member of a spiritual movement. How does this relate to becoming a member of the Temple of Starlight?

We are open for people from all kinds of religious and social movements and regard tolerance and independence as core values. We respect the spiritual practices of other organizations. However not all the spiritual practices mix with our system. When you are actively practicing an inner tradition we advise you to contact HQ to synchronize the different systems.

Our Eggregore cordially welcomes all the people who are seriously interested in practicing the spiritual exercises of our Temple. It guarantees and protects an atmosphere of comradeship.

 

11. What is meant by a "contacted Institute"?

A properly contacted institute is a institute founded and actively headed by the Inner Plane Adepti, the Masters on the Inner Planes. Different traditions have different names for them – the Great White Lodge, the College of Adepts, the Ascended Masters, the Communion of Saints, the Perfected Ones, the Withdrawn Order, the Elder Brethren, the College of the Holy Spirit, the Inner Order, the True and Invisible Rosicrucian Order, etc. The earth-plane head of a contacted institute has to be psychic enough to be able to communicate with them. The influence of the Inner Plane Adepti is transmitted through the group mind of the contacted institute to all within its sphere of influence. This tends to accelerate the development of the students.

 

12. Is your training a Kabalistic one?

The Masters behind the institute are Egyptian. We use the Kabalistic Tree as a connecting thread throughout the training, because this has been the foundation of the Western Mystery Tradition. The training itself is eclectic. It uses the structure of the Kabalistic Tree to explain the different traditions of the Western Mystery Tradition.

 

13. Are your trainings compatible with modern life?

Yes. In fact, it is essential that you have a firm grip of your daily realities. Spiritual development must never become an escape from the normal duties of everyday life. Contrary to popular opinion, spiritual development is not glamorous – it is a lot of hard work over a prolonged period of time, requiring perseverance, patience and dedication. Properly done, it should not take a major chunk out of your life. For the Solo Magical Training this means a daily investment of 30-45 minutes each day to meditate, do the exercises and to study the lesson material. For the Temple Training this means being present at the planned temple days.

 

14. Why do you wear robes?

Robes are important for the atmosphere. Within Freemasonry, the Golden Dawn, the Christian Churches, Buddhist monasteries … all work with robes. When religions work with pantheons of gods, then the priests even wear costumes to channel their forces.

You can see this in Tibetan Bön, but also on reliefs from ancient Egypt, it is done for shamanistic rituals, in Catholic Mystery Drama a girl can be chosen to personify the Virgin Mary, etc. Then the temple becomes the set of a mystery play, causing people to get very deep into the energy. Wearing costumes or robes has a special effect and is preceded by spiritual exercises. When you wear a costume under these circumstances, you become a channel for a divine force.

 

15. Do I learn how to do rituals?

In the Temple Training classes a ritual is a part of every lesson. In the Solo Magical Training you will do exercises and sequences of exercises that will let you grow slowly towards solo ritual work.

A ritual in its true form is simply a form of externalized meditation. A ritual is a prayer in movement. Like meditation, it needs to be practiced with insight and care. You will be given exercises during the Solo Magical Training – for instance, an opening gesture to use before meditation, and another to use after the meditation session. These are used to focus the mind. Magical ritual is simply a natural extension of this principle.

 

16. Do I get a personal tutor?

Each student of the Temple of Starlight is assigned to a supervision team who monitor the work of the student. As a student of the Solo Magical Training, you are required to keep a detailed meditation diary of your daily exercises.

These are automatically sent to one of the supervisors at the end of each lesson. Your supervisor will assess the meditation record and write back to you with any pertinent comments. Furthermore, you can write to headquarters at any time if you have questions or problems with the training.

The Temple Training enables you to work together with initiates from all degrees right from the beginning, this ensures an optimal development.

 

17. Am I free to leave the institute whenever I wish?

Yes. You can leave the Temple of Starlight at any point in your studies and for any reason. You do not have to state your reasons for leaving if you do not wish to do so. We will not try to stop you from leaving us, neither will we hang on to you in any way, since we recognize that each individual has his or her own path to follow. When you leave "in good standing" we remain friends when the path leads people into new directions. Should you find that our particular institute is not what you are looking for, we will be happy to recommend other institutes if you so wish.

 

18. How long will it take me to become a First Degree Initiate?

This is dependent on your own commitment to the daily meditations and the frequency of visiting the practical classes. For the first degree you can count on a minimum of five years of monthly participation plus a minimum age of 35 years old.

 

19. What? Five years?

Yes. It is a thorough training, and it will give results. Spiritual development and mental training take time and effort. Regard it as the equivalent of university studies.

 

20. Is the Temple of Starlight a commercial organization?

The contributions that we ask for are used for buildings, computers, furniture etc., to do investments in the organization, to pay professionals who offer services to the organization (such as a webbuilder, an accountant etc.) We are officially registered in the Netherlands (KvK) as a religious/philosophical organization to teach the cultural heritage of the Western Mystery Tradition. People who enroll for training, subscribe per semester or per module (dependent on the event). We have an accountant and pay taxes like every organization in the Netherlands.

 

21. What are the costs of the training?

Prices are online at the pages for the events. For the Temple Training and the Solo Magical Training the prices are per semester. It is possible to try out the temple training for a maximum of three temple days.

People who do the Solo Magical Training can visit temple days.

Affiliation to the Temple Training Lodges is prolonged automatically per semester. Semesters end at January 31 and July 31. For all events of the Temple of Starlight we have a payment deadline of 7 days. On request it is possible to pay in installments.

 

22. How does the decision making process work?

The Temple of Starlight has houserules and a studyguide. The newest version of the studyguide is online [here]. We develop slowly like every organization. When structural changes need to be made, the trainees are informed and asked for feedback, then the changes are effectuated and listed in the study guide. With the presentation of the new studyguide, the elder versions are overruled.

 

23. Will the training make me psychic?

It depends on what you mean by the word. All people have psychic or clairvoyant gifts, but some have them closer to the surface. Studies within a contacted Mystery institute such as the Temple of Starlight will strengthen the links between the various levels of your being, and this in itself tends to bring these hidden faculties closer to the surface. The results vary greatly with each person. We do not guarantee that our students develop into fully-fledged psychics or clairvoyants. No institute can guarantee such a thing – all depends on the individual. However, many do develop an increased awareness of the hidden levels of existence. Others may find it takes longer, and in some the psychic abilities are simply too deeply buried in the psyche.

 

24. I’m already psychic, how will it affect me?

This, too, varies with the individual – it depends on the kind of psychism, how it manifests and the degree of control you have over it. Some find that the psychic faculties seem to disappear for a time, which can be disconcerting. However, those who persevere with the training will find that the psychic faculties return in a more reliable and controlled form. Some, on the other hand, do not go through a "dry phase", but instead experience a steady deepening of their psychic abilities. Yet others find it makes no difference at all.

 

25. Do you offer coaching?

There is a limited possibility to apply for a series of coaching sessions. Each session takes two hours. Normally a person needs 3–5 sessions.

 

26. What about the copyrights?

In the time that Ina Cüsters-van Bergen was connected to the SOL she used both her own materials and SOL materials. From the moment on that the Temple of Starlight became an independent institution, Ina uses only training materials written by herself.

 

27. What are your privacy rules?

We are very careful with names, private issues and social media. Trainees decide for themselves to what extend they participate in online events.

People have private lives, with own friends and acquaintances. The Temple of Starlight is a place to recharge your batteries, and return to your own light with full energy. We do not interfere in the private lives of our trainees, unless we are specifically asked for help.

Publications of articles of trainees on the website: Trainees like to share their experiences and nothing is published without their consent on the Temple of Starlight website. Stories that belong to the private domain are anonymized, so they cannot be traced back to the persons who experienced them. All stories are true and written by the trainees themselves.

 

28. History

The Temple of Starlight came forth from the SOL (Servants of the Light), headed by Mrs. Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki. Ina Cüsters-van Bergen has been trained by Mrs. Ashcroft-Nowicki to the highest degree in the Western Mystery Tradition. After her highest initiation Ina worked for a few years for the SOL, until the time arrived to proceed independently; like a young queen bee hives off with her swarm, as is the nature of things. The Temple of Starlight has grown from a lodge to a daughter school to an independent institution. The Temple of Starlight and the Servants of the Light have still connections (leave in good standing), but do not interfere in each other's businesses. The history of the Temple of Starlight and the SOL you can read [here].

 

29. Leave "in good standing".

Everyone who left our organization "in good standing" is welcomed at any open days, open workshops, special events, and they are kept informed. They can continue their training with the Temple of Starlight at any moment.

 

30. Guest teacher

On request Ina Custers-van Bergen organizes teaching classes for other organizations and/or groups. In the past Ina has taught throughout Europe, from the UK to Romania, from Belgium to Germany.

 

31. Who is Ina Cüsters-van Bergen?

[Read more] about the founder of our institute.

 

 

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