by Karl Schlotterbeck, M.A., C.A.S.
This article describes the psychological power of mystery schools, with examples of how their practices and beliefs affect intrapsychic dynamics, interpersonal relationships, and spiritual development in later lives. Their ideal of integrated and holistic schooling is contrasted with the observed dysfunctional effects when some of their principles are carried over unconsciously and indiscriminately — into broader social contexts in subsequent incarnations.
I know of few things that can excite the imagination as much as the mystery schools of bygone times. The very thought of them evokes images of robed candidates and initiates in their cells or courtyards or libraries, preparing for initiation or seeking illumination.
If you could image yourself as one of these postulants, you might well be awed by the revelations that must be kept from the profane. You might also be apprehensive about the trials that will test your readiness and worthiness to receive those ancient secrets, yet hopeful that the passing of these trials will lead to a more profound connection with the divine.
As you turn from such reveries, you might be tempted to attribute them to the influence of romantic books and movies. Or you might (as I would) find in them some of your own buried memories, calling to you from depths within yourself.
Much of the sacred knowledge of the mystery schools has been lost to us because of the stern prohibitions against revealing it to the inept, the unscrupulous, or the otherwise profane — prohibitions often accompanied by threats of exile or even death. This may help to explain my interest in the memories reported by my clients as part of our past-life therapy sessions.