It should also be remembered that if the above is true in connection with the work, it is still more true with the initiate himself. Initiation is a strictly personal matter with a universal application. It rests upon his inner attainment. The initiate will know for himself when that event occurs and needs no one to tell him of it. The expansions of consciousness which we undergo normally every day, and call "learning" something or other, have reference to the apprehension by the physical brain of an imparted fact or apprehended circumstance, so with the greater expansion which are the outcome of the many lesser.
At the same time, it is quite possible for me to be functioning on the physical plane and to be actively employed in world service who have no recollection of having undergone the initiatory process, yet who, nevertheless may have taken the first or second initiation in a previous or earlier life. This is the result, simply, of a lack of "bridging" from one life to another, or it may be the outcome of a definite decision of the ego.
A man may be able better to work off certain karma and to carry out certain work for the Lodge if he is free from occult occupation and mystic introspection during the period of any one earth life. There are many such among the sons of men at this time who have previously take the first initiation, and few who have taken the second, but who are nevertheless quite unaware of it, yet their centres and nervous organisation carry proof to those who have the inner vision.
If initiation is taken for the first time in any life, the recollection of it extends to the physical brain.