I love being a Neophyte.
Simply because I have the opportunity to look blankly at people and then encouraging them and others around me to expound their knowledge and display their skills and experience, which is, and will always be, a whole lot deeper and experiential than I possess right now.
Not because I think I am a bad occultist or enjoy putting myself down, but because I am truly blessed to be in an Order that consists of individuals who have spent a considerable part of their lives not only as Golden Dawn people, but generally engaged in Magic and Occult studies. None of them have really sat me down and 'explained' how awesome they are to me. I didn't receive a dossier on each member with their qualifications, lineages and "power levels". There is no required reading list of their books or publications. I have had to talk to other members of the Order and infer from conversations the depth and breadth of their skill and experience. I have had to be in rituals, have deep experiences and magical experiences to try to understand their skills and expertise. I actually am really intimidated by some of the members of my Order, as well as their associates and other work they do. One of my co-members is a 30 year plus leader of their community, one is an internationally recognised authority on the Golden Dawn, one is an extremely well connected Magus kinda guy and yet another is an internationally derided pagan internet troll!
They are nothing but generous with their time and thoughts, the things I have brought to the table will hopefully help their practice and build our Golden Dawn Order up and promote it's stability and longevity.
I have approximately 16 years of occult experience (not sure how much I have really, this is a guess and discounts everything up till the age of 21, teen angst and all that. From 21, I was more systematic). As an occultist I started with reading and exploring religious thought outside my Catholic upbringing, working with Saints and eventually entering into Freemasonry and finally initiation into occult orders. I have been a Freemason for over 14 years and I am now in the sad position of seeing many of my amazing mentors and Brothers passing to the Grand Lodge above. While they may not have been interested in Esoteric Freemasonry as far as I knew (they may have been, but were probably more discrete than I) but they gave me a firm foundation on which to build my magical practice.
Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth; Faith, Hope and Charity; Beauty, Strength and Wisdom.