Quest for the Holy Grail
by Jack Courtis
We might not know this and we might not like it, but we are all pilgrims on the inner journey of personal transformation. In this journey we still have not realised that there is a unity between the dreamer, the dreaming and the dream. So let us accept ourselves as we are; as the dreamer. Let us now experience the dream.
It is a lovely day and you are walking in a forest. The sun is shining, the sky is blue, birds are singing, flowers and butterflies are everywhere. Feel safe and secure, completely at peace. As you follow the path through the forest, come to a clearing. In the middle there is a round building that you instinctively know is a chapel. As a pilgrim, you know that this is a place that you must enter because here you will find redemption and healing.
Move around this building and notice that it has 12 doors but no windows. Each door has upon it the symbol of one of the signs of the zodiac. You realise that you must look for your own sign. Pause and observe. When you find it, notice that there is no handle on the door. How do you go inside? Then you hear a gentle voice say to you "Seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you." Without understanding why, you knock on the door 3 times. It opens, walk inside and it closes behind you. Although there are no windows there is a muted golden light that enables you to see clearly. There is no furniture inside this round building and no other structure. The floor is completely bare except that in the middle, there appears to be an opening. Go to it and see that there are 7 steps leading downwards.
Walk down the steps and see that on the wall next to each one, there is the symbol of a planetary sign: the Moon, Mercury, Venus, the Sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn. Go down in perfect safety and security. When you reach the bottom of the steps, pause. You realise that although there are no torches or other sources of light, nevertheless you are still bathed in a golden glow. You see everything clearly.
You are in a small chamber. In front of you is a door and upon it, is a symbol which you understand to be the alchemical principle Salt. Knock 3 times (* **) and the door opens. Walk through. Pause and reflect. What does this mean?
You find a second door. It has upon it a symbol that you instinctively know to be the alchemical principle Sulfur. Again you knock 3 times (** *) and the door opens. Pause once more. How do you feel?
Walk through and find a third door. This time it has a symbol you believe is the alchemical principle Mercury. Once more knock 3 times (***) and the door opens. Pause and consider its meaning, then go through into total darkness.
Although surrounded by blackness, you feel that you are in a large room. You are not afraid because the gentle voice speaks to you again and says, "Be not afraid little one; I am with you always, even unto the end of the world". Become aware of a very dim light radiating from a single candle. With confidence walk towards the candlelight.
When you reach it, there is a table. Upon it, the candle holder is placed on a stone in the shape of a cube. The stone is an emerald colour. Behind it on the table, is a sword. To its right there is a cup and to its left is a spear. Immediately in front of it, there is a dish. You realise that you are standing in front of an altar and that the cup holds wine and the dish holds bread.
Again, the gentle voice speaks to you "I have come that ye may have life, and have it more abundantly". You now understand that you are in the Grail Chapel. Be aware that the Grail Guardian and Grail Bearer are here for you.
Pause for a moment and realise that you are the dreamer and this is the dreaming. But what is the dream? Without understanding why, you desire to reflect upon your life. Pause as your mind focuses on the pain from your past. Perhaps tears flow and you cannot stop them. Maybe the pain is pouring out, causing you overwhelming grief. This is your most secret, most private sorrow. Pause and reflect that this is the pain that you have not mentioned even to those whom you love the most. But here, in this dark place, you allow it to come out. Since you are a pilgrim and you are in the Grail Chapel, you have the strength and courage to face it honestly.
Pause and hear the gentle voice speak to you and say "Ask …". And suddenly you desire to invoke the Grail Bearer. In your own way, do so. There is a flash of rose pink light and a woman appears on the other side of the altar, facing you. She is richly dressed and carries herself like a queen. Strangely, you cannot see her face. Again you desire to invoke, this time the Grail Guardian. A flash of bluish white light and a male figure stands before you. He is dressed as a monk. Again, you cannot see his face.
You are lost for words but speech is not required here. You know what you must do. Reach inside of yourself and touch the pain in your heart. Somehow you see it, hear it or feel it in a way that you are able to symbolise. Bring this symbol out of yourself and hold it in your hands as an offering. Pause and then reach across the altar and give it to the Guardian. He takes it from your hands and turns to face the woman. He and she together hold your symbol between them. Her wisdom and his understanding combine to draw down a golden beam of light that you know to be divine grace.
This light shines upon the symbol of your pain and transforms it into pure love. The symbol changes into a new form. A form that for you, is your own personal redemption, at your deepest most secret level. They now hand this transformed symbol back to you. Pause, receive it with thanks and joy and absorb it back through your heart, into your deepest inner self.
Now feel yourself being transformed. The pain begins to subside and then totally disappears. You begin to breathe deeply. Feel pure, unconditional love flowing through you. As you continue to breathe deeply, a marvellous sense of calm and inner-peace washes over you. You sense that all is well. Pause and feel joyous. It is your right.
To give thanks to the Grail Guardian and Grail Bearer all you need to do is bow to them. Do so. They bow in return and vanish.
Your own inner light now replaces the light of the single candle. Turn about and walk out through the 3 alchemical doors and up the 7 planetary steps. At the top of the steps, pause and notice that the 12 zodiacal doors have disappeared. Your inner light flows out of the Grail Chapel in 12 powerful streams.
Know yourself to be the dreamer, the dreaming and the dream. You are a pilgrim no more.