« Riddle of Qayin | Main | A Jewish View of Satan »

The Rose Beyond the Grave

Here is something that we find core in our beliefs of the afterlife in my Tradition.

It was written by the late Evan John Jones. I don't know if it was ever published. I have edited it for the things that I think are inappropriate for those outside of Tradition. I hope you find it interesting.  Might I add that I am not of the same Tradition as Evan John Jones but there are certain commonalities of belief that make this particular piece of writing appropriate for my own Tradition.

The Rose Beyond the Grave

When I was discussing some ‘clan’ matters with some American visitors a few years ago, we reached a point where, if we were to go on talking, a single red rose would then have to be placed upon the table. This was done, and from that moment on, everyone present was honour-bound never to repeat anything that was said at that table to any outsider. For what was discussed was now sub rosa, literally, “under the rose”.

This equation of the rose with secrecy goes back to Pagan Roman times, supposedly when Cupid gave a rose to Harpocrates, god of silence, to symbolize concealing of the secrets of Venus. Hence early Christians rejected the rose as a decorative motif because of it’s association with Roman depravity. Yet the rose crept back in, as in the “rose windows” of many medieval churches, not to mention the rose hip’s utility as an inexpensive and ideally shaped material for making rosary beads--reinforcing it’s name, which comes from the Virgin Mary’s allegorical “crown of roses”.

Among occultists, the rose symbolizes secrets of the Mysteries. In the case of my own Tradition, the Clan of Tubal Cain, it is also associated with the grave. Many of us hope and believe that there is another life beyond the grave. Some Pagans cast their “Summerlands” as merely a more kindly version of this present world. In my tradition, we believe that we are reborn time and time again, each life shaped by the way we lived our past life, until in the end we become spiritually advanced enough not to have to return to this world. Instead, we are absorbed into and become as one with the Godhead that first seeded this earth with fragments of itself, each fragment becoming an individual soul. Still, no one as yet has offered concrete and irrefutable proof of life after death, such as would stand up in a court of law. No matter our religion, no matter how much we delve into our innermost being to dredge up past-life experiences, in the end all that we have left is our personal belief in the existence of a soul and of a life beyond the grave. Only when we cross from life to death can we find the true answer to the secret that we call “the rose beyond the grave”.

If we believe in the existence of an immortal soul, we are faced with the question of what happens to it after death. Since every religion offers its own version of the afterlife, they cannot all be right--or can they? One of my first lessons in the Craft dealt with this very subject. I was told, “For many eons the human spirit had no abode, then finally by desire to survive [it] created the pathway to the Otherworlds. Nothing is got by doing nothing, and whatever we do now creates the world in which we exist tomorrow. The same applies to death: what we have created in thought, we create in that other reality. We should remember that Desire was the first of all created things."

If this be true, then there can be as many Otherworld places of the dead as there are religions, and each one will be equally valid in it’s own right without denying or contradicting the validity of others created by the collective minds and desires of a religion’s followers. If a small group of rail enthusiasts believe firmly enough in a heaven where all the trains are steam powered, run on time, and never have problems with the wrong sort of snow or leaves on the line, then it would exist, because their desires would have brought about its creation. Likewise, because we want to believe in reincarnation, therefore it exists, because we have used our God-given gifts to create our own eternity.

My Craft teacher Robert Cochrane once said, ”When I am dead, I shall go to another place that myself and those who have gone before me have created. Without their work it would not exist; it was their Faith that built it, and it is my believing in it that will secure my inheritance.“

This place is none other than the Castle that spins without motion between two worlds. When we wish to express this graphically, we use the symbol of a castle surrounded by a wreath of roses.


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Hosting by Yahoo!


Hi Christy!

In answer to your question, the The The Rose Beyond the Grave article by Evan John Jones was originally published in The Cauldron Magazine (no 78 in 1995) and then in "The Roebuck In The Thicket" (chapter 7 in 2001).


Clan of Tubal Cain


Thanks so much for that clarification!

I know this is really boring and you are skipping to the next comment, but I just wanted to throw you a big thanks - you cleared up some things for me!

Hi Christy

Glad to be of assistance :)

Great blog by the way !


Clan of Tubal Cain


Not boring at all, and I'm glad that something I posted was of assistance.

There will be more soon. I promise. On a wide variety of topics. It's just exciting for me that someone besides me is reading this!

Very informative, this was just the information I was looking for. You are dead on the money.

I know this is really boring and you are skipping to the next comment, but I just wanted to throw you a big thanks - you cleared up some things for me!

Great Post. I would love to read more in future. keep up the good work.

I've never heard of this before. I'll make sure to find out more.

Hey I was just viewing your page on my Pantech Phone and I was wondering how well it will work on the new ipad coming out . Fleeting thought.... Anyway thanks!

This is a good blog. Keep up all the work. I too love blogging and expressing my opinions. Thanks :)

You certainly deserve a round of applause for your post and more specifically, your blog in general. Very high quality material

I love your style about I Say All This To Say: The Rose Beyond the Grave

I'm just dropping here to say you've truly improved on your writing abilities. I have been reading your stuff for a decent amount of time now. -Jake

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)