As stated on this site, the intention and vision of AR+CO is to make our Rosicrucian teachings available to the world. For this reason, our High Council holds a transmission that enables us the freedom to work with its material and mystical work.
The currents held in the International College of AR+CO, or Ancient Rose Cross Order, springs from Germany after Rudolf Steiner received a transmission of the the Rosicrucian Order. In 1906 Rudolf Steiner established his own branch of the current rectifying the rituals into what he considered to be more esoterically potent form of initiation utilising the higher rites and currents of Egyptian Freemasonry. For the entire duration of its existence Rudolf Steiner was the Grand Hierophant in Germany.
Today we carry this transmission for the purpose of aligning ourselves to the minds that once carried it. We do not consider this lineage a secret and have made the decision to describe some of its details here. For interested persons enquiries may be made about our lineage and further information can be obtained containing references.
Rudolf Steiners Mystica Aeterna in its time was considered an umbrella organization to several Rosicrucian Orders and contained the elite of Germany's esoteric minds. This group had a variety of members, formed by Masons and non-Masons alike that incorporated a rotating chairmanship for the representatives of each order. In total the College oversaw eleven Masonic, Rosicrucian and Philosophical Societies.
Starting in 1912 one Rosicrucian, Dr. Robert Felkin, established a branch of another Rosicrucian College in New Zealand calling it the Smaragdum Thalasis. His order was also derived from Masonic origins and was established on the principle that it was based upon the instructions of secret adepts also from Germany. The German adepts however were unknown and Felkin began his search for them to obtain additional teachings. In 1913 Felkin made contact with Steiner's Rosicrucian umbrella group. According to Felkin one of the eleven orders under the governance of this group was in fact the original order of his own Rosicrucian organization. When he returned to England and New Zealand he announced that he had found the German Adepts and true Rosicrucian Order.
After meeting with Steiner's Rosicrucian Order Felkin was given a hearing and was approved for associate membership and nominated a person whom he sent to Germany to attend his meetings. Soon after, Felkin's association to the German Adepts was ratified and he returned to New Zealand with the Ninth Degree from Rudolf Steiner. On his return he brought with him the Steiner aura teachings, named the 'Process Documents' and initiation rituals for the sixth, seventh and eighth degrees being derived from Steiner's own Rosicrucian Order. The seventh degree ritual contained a ceremony called 'The Ritual for Transmission of the Etheric Link' of which Steiner had performed to communicate his ancient Egyptian Rosicrucian current onto Dr. Robert Felkin. This beautiful ritual is still in use among our High Council today for the installation of Hierophants.
For nearly seventy years Dr. Felkin's own Rosicrucian College carried the Steiner transmission and rituals in New Zealand. The Steiner materials and influence provided additional Rosicrucian teachings to his own order. Due to the influence of World War II all other orders of this lineage ceased to operate because of Hitler's persecution towards Rosicrucian groups. It was the Nazi's purpose to close down such groups because of our belief in personal liberation and human equality. The N.Z Rosicrucian College was however out of reach from the influence of the war and continued well beyond becoming the only unbroken transmission of Steiner's lineage and his Rosicrucian transmission. The current itself had already shown that it desired to live on and continued to do so when a small group of Adepts from Smaragdum Thalasis decided in 1978 to initiate a new group of students so that the transmissions and tradition would continue.
Today this small group is still alive and operating the full Smaragdum Thalasis teachings. In 1999 the Order was brought to Australia and the Rosicrucian current derived from Steiner and his High Council of German Adepts was transmitted onto the current high counsel members of the Rosicrucian College of AR+CO. On obtaining the transmission AR+CO was formulated to work the Steiner transmission independently of any other esoteric influence to preserve the integrity of this wonderful and unique Rosicrucian tradition.