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3—The "Shield"

After presenting our "temple recommends" (passes), we immediately were shunted into separate dressing areas – I went to a Washing and Anointing area. After removing all my clothing, my naked body was covered in a thin, white, poncho/sheet called a "shield."

Nudity in religious ceremony was not new to me. In fact, the shield was identical to the one I had worn when going through my initiation into the witchcraft Melchizedek Priesthood in Zion State Park outside Chicago. The only difference was that the shield I’d worn in witchcraft was black. (1) I’d been taught that the lower degrees of witchcraft wore black, but the highest degrees wore white. In fact, we used the term "The Great White brotherhood," to refer to high-level Magi. (2) Since I knew that this was to be a very high initiation, I expected the color to be white.

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