The Initiates of the Flame is a little essay on the mystery of fire. To all ancient peoples fire was a symbol of the divine One dwelling in the innermost parts of all things. Robert Fludd, a Rosicrucian mystic, writing in the seventeenth century, declared that the fire of the philosophers was divided into three parts: first, a visible fire which is the source of physical light and heat; second, an invisible, or astral fire, which enlightens and warms the soul; third, a spiritual, or divine fire which in the universe is known as God and in man as spirit.
The Initiates who took their oaths in the presence of the Flame renounced the lesser concerns of ordinary life and, freed from the attachments of this material sphere, these purified souls became custodians of that symbolic Flame of wisdom which is the true Light of the world. This Light is a manifestation of the one Universal Life, that active agent whose impulses are the cause of all sidereal phenomena. Where in antiquity this flame of light, this spirit-fire, was the object of a universal adoration and was worshipped as the very presence of God Himself, it now lies buried beneath the ruins of man’s fallen temple. Obscured by the paramount interests of the flesh, it emits but the faintest gleam in this non-philosophic age. – Manly P. Hall