In the process of understanding the Skull and Bones rituals, particularly their initiation, it’s important to remember that these are 21 year old college students who carry out this ritual. It’s hard to imagine some of the prominent Skull and Bones members engaging in these acts, unless it’s done with the understanding that this is at the core, a group of college students. If you take away the elitism that comes with Skull and Bones, the initiation ritual itself is a childish display from immature privileged kids.
It’s just as important to understand that this is the bond that ties all of these men together. Of all of the Skull and Bones secrets, the one that they protect is their initiation process. In 1977, Ron Rosemaum wrote for Esquire Magazine that Bonesmen have sworn an oath of secrecy and that the mere mention of Skull and Bones will cause any member to leave the room.
Initiation starts with the “tapping” process. Bonesmen leave The Tomb 2 at a time to pick up their junior
class initiates. The Skull and Bones rituals are conducted by the 15 senior class Bonesmen as the 15 new initiates go through the initiation process. After selecting and bringing all of the initiates to The Tomb, the initiation process begins by initiating members one at a time.
As detailed in a 2001 report, the initiation processes features an imitation of George W. Bush, crude references to sodomy, reenactments of ritualistic murder and skulls. Initiates are led in front of members dressed up as The Pope, The Devil, and other costumed figures. Rob Rosebaum wrote an acticle in 1977 while following Skull and Bones. He followed up that article with a 2001 report that included video of an initiation, and the source of the pictures as well. According to Rob Rosenbaum,
someone–one of the initiates?–called out “Uncle Toby!” (Many Bones ritual personae are taken from Laurence Sterne’s Tristram Shandy–you gotta give them credit there for good taste.)
“Uncle Toby!” the cry repeated.
“Shut up, neophyte.”
“Take that plunger out of my ass, Uncle Toby.” Presumably, this mocking Louima reference was a ploy to scare initiates into thinking Uncle Toby was going to give them the plunger treatment.
That cheerful rectal theme was followed up by: “I’m gonna ream you like I reamed Al Gore!” from the George W. imitator.
Followed by “Help me! It’s the devil!”
And then “George W.” really getting into it: “I’m gonna kill you like I killed Al Gore.”
The initiates are told that they are superior beings and are part of a privileged elite that use war, terror, and famine to control human population. They are abused verbally and physically during the process. The initiates are lowered into a casket from which they are reborn into society and given new nicknames. Other members act out ritualistic murder scenes where actors “throats are cut.”
The Skull and Bones ritual includes their Death Mantra. The mantra has been chanted by all of the influential Skull and Bones members society. It is what unites them to each other. During the Death Mantra, initiates are instructed to crawl around the floor collecting bones. Every Skull and Bones member chants in unison:
The Devil Equals Death!
Death Equals Death!
Led by the Devil costumed figure, initiates are instructed to “Hurry, neophyte! Run neophyte!” “Find the femur, neophyte!” The Devil figure leads them into a tent in the back courtyard where the bones are found. Once they leave the tent, they are led to the main point of the ritual. Face to face with a scene of a man holding a butcher knife and wearing animal skin standing over a woman covered in fake blood, and not much else. The neophyte is instructed to approach and kiss a skull that sits by the women. At that point, the man cuts the throat of the woman below him.