|Declaration of Mithraism
When the worship of an ancient faith is to be restored to the world, it is necessary for persons aspiring to common ideals to form a clear foundation for their religion. It is also proper that they should make these concepts public so that the religion itself may be better understood.
1. We who worship the god Mithras hold the ideals expressed here to be basic and integral to our faith, that we may be united both in thought and deed. Mithraism provides a spiritual heritage which embodies the basic nature of Civilization. It is a historical faith, a living faith and a philosophy, which preserves the spiritual past even as it progresses into the future. Here we establish the structure and basic nature of Mithraism so that it may be preserved, while allowing for future growth and freedom of individual expression.
2. We hold that a Mithraist can be defined as a person who actively performs rites, rituals and/or prayers to Mithras as a major part of their spiritual involvement. We acknowledge that this does not make one an Initiate of the Mithraic Mysteries, which is a specialized path of spiritual, philosophical learning and growth that applies to those who are training for the priesthood. We acknowledge also that individuals may at times work with Mithras as a deity without considering themselves as followers of the Mithraic Mysteries.
3. We affirm that modern Mithraism embodies the spiritual beliefs, practices, virtues, philosophies and initiatory system of the ancient Mithraic Mysteries. These constitute and express a clear and separate form of religion and spirituality that is unique and different from all other spiritual paths. We hold that the various practices of today are the spiritual successor of the ancient ways, reborn anew.
4. We affirm that the historical basis of our spirituality comes from the worship of Mithras in the ancient world from India to Scotland. Aspects of this history are found throughout antiquity, from the 2nd millennium BC until the beginning of the Medieval era.
5. We understand that the ancient worship of Mithras was practiced primarily, by men in Roman world but by both men and women in Persia an India. However, we acknowledge that over the course of centuries women have become involved in the rites of other Savior deities without detriment. We therefore leave the question of gender open to you the individual practitioner rather than making a decision on behalf of the entire faith. We feel that Mithraism should be open to all people, regardless of nationality, race, gender, sexuality, spiritual or other individual circumstance. Others prefer a more historical membership requirement. We respect the rights and beliefs of all and those who worship Mithras may practice or not practice with others as they choose.
6. We affirm that Mithraism belongs to no one race or nationality, but is instead a common founding heritage of all Western civilization. Mithraism was practiced throughout Europe and into Britain, Africa and to the East, Therefore it has influenced many peoples and nations of the world, either directly or by the legacy of its history, philosophies and practices.
7. We also affirm that Mithraism is compatible with, and may be practiced alongside all other forms of polytheistic religion and spiritual expression, without diluting or diminishing its basic ideals and spiritual identity. In the ancient world Mithraism was practiced alongside Roman, Celtic, German, Greek, Egyptian, Persian and Oriental faiths, to the enhancement of all. This syncretistic approach to other religions remains basic to the Mithraic spiritual world view.
8. We affirm that the ancient initiatory path and grade system of the Mithraic Mysteries were the key to the practice of Mithraism in antiquity. It is the rebuilding of working Mysteries that is our goal. Even so, we understand that the Mysteries were not uniform in all places in antiquity, and therefore Mithraic worship may embody many forms of ritual and practice. These may include private prayer, meditation and ritual, as well as public rites and ritual, in addition to the Inner initiatory Mysteries. Such methods were surely practiced in the ancient world and may be included within the overall realm of the Mithraic revival.
9. We further affirm that rites and worship within Mithraism may be approached in many ways. In this manner the spiritual needs of all practicing individuals may be fulfilled. These various approaches may include group or individual worship, philosophical practice focusing on prayer and contemplation, purely historical reconstruction of ancient ritual form and initiation, as well as forms of modern rites and worship that adapt ancient practices and ideals.
10. We affirm that Mithraism shall be an organized and structured faith. In addition to purely individual involvement and the organization of autonomous groups, its form may contain the reestablishment of historical religious institutions. These may include established physical Mithraeums, mystery schools, priesthoods and religious colleges, and coordinating religious bodies.
11. We affirm that Mithraism was and is a civilized faith, empowering family, community and state to positive virtue and beneficial effect. The rites, beliefs, virtues and philosophies of Mithraic religion are by nature benign and lawful, serving to facilitate Truth, piety toward the gods, and understanding and cooperation among all people.
12. We affirm that the spiritual duty of the modern practitioner of Mithraism is to be a positive example and force for good in the world, as well as to seek spiritual salvation through Mithras. We seek to rebuild His positive influence in the world, and through piety and action preserve the sacred link between Mithras and humanity.
13. We affirm that the earthly responsibility of Mithraism itself is to restore the ancient worship of Mithras and to renew his positive influence into modern civilization. We seek to rebuild the worship, rites, principles, philosophies and history of Mithraism and to make them available to all persons wishing to incorporate them as a modern spiritual path.
These religious ideals and tenets are set forth and adopted in honor of Mithras as an Eternal God and in remembrance of our ancient Mithraic spiritual ancestors. Through them we are focused and united. Let them stand as an affirmation of our Intent, Faith and Practice.