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"You are dead as man knows it," said the Helper.
"No, I am not dead," she said. "I am here but I am hungry and I cannot get the food and water, I go right through it. That body on the floor is mine or it used to be mine."
"Come to me and do as I tell you," he said to her, and she came to him. "Now will yourself well." She did this and showed her amazement.
"Now tell me how you got here," he said.
"I was going with a rich young man and he wanted to marry me," she said. "Something told me not to do it, so I tried to break up with him but he was insistent. One day he asked me to go for a ride as he often did. I was to meet him as usual and we would go and eat lunch and then ride in the country. He gave me a drink of wine as usual and we got into the car. He must have put me to sleep. I knew no more until I found myself chained in this shack and I did not know where I was. There was food and water on the table but I could not reach it.
"The man told me that he was going to leave me to starve to death as I would not marry him and then he went out I thought he was joking at first and would come and get me. That night I was frightened. The next day he did not come and the pangs of hunger and thirst were very severe. I marked in my notebook each day until I became too weak to do so. After awhile I began to see my life, from the time I came hear back as far as I can remember. I prayed the best I could for someone to come and find me but no one came. At times when I could think I used to wonder what caused me to be treated this way. One day I saw myself as a man and I saw that I led a woman off and fastened her in a cave with food and water and left her to starve to death and she did. I have never lived before. How could it possibly be true?"
The man Helper explained his teachings to her and told her about the Law of Cause and Effect.
"That explains why I am afraid of caves and swamps," she said.
"Was it the same man that left you here only in a woman's body?" asked the Helper.
"Why, yes, he was the woman," she replied. "How strange! I did not notice that before."
"Now forgive him," said the Helper," and do not think of getting even or having revenge, for you do not want to meet this same fate again."
"Yes, I forgive him since I know the cause," she said. "I starved this man when he was a woman in this last life. Where is Hell? Where is Heaven?"
The Helpers told her that they would soon take her there. They broke the chains and opened the door. One of the Helpers picked up her pocketbook, took out the money and put the pocketbook and her hat on her body. The Helpers took the girl's dead body out and they were told to drop it into a deep hole in the swamp where it would never come up again. A little later on they gave the girl's money to some African-American people who were in need.
The Helpers thought that the man would return again to see the girls dead body. When he finds her gone and no trace of her or her footprints he will be troubled in mind.
The Helpers took the ego of the girl with them to the Borderland. When they reached this place the Lay Sister in charge told them to take her to Purgatory. She began to cry and begged her new friends to stay with her but they could not do that. She did not have to go very far down into Purgatory, for she had not done many wrong things. The man Helper asked about the man who had caused the girl's death. He was told that there was a law that would take care of him.
The girl's Angel was at the shack with her during this time of trial. "I tried to impress it upon her to stay at home," this Angel said, "but she would not listen to me. I have been here day and night as much as I could. I have been here constantly during the last two days and nights." This Angel went with the Helpers when they took the girl to the Borderland and then he left them. There were tears in his eyes as he talked to the Helpers.
One night about five hundred students of the Mystic and Esoteric teachings heard a lecture that was given in the Inner Worlds somewhere on the subject, "If a Man Dies, Will He Live Again?"
"We will live again," said the Teacher, "and he will be reborn in that place where he will pay off most of his karma." (Karma is a Sanskrit word meaning the Great Law, known to the people of the Western World as the Law of Consequence, or as Spiritual Cause and Effect.)
The speaker spoke first from a spiritual standpoint and then from a material standpoint. He spoke of how a devoted Christian lives and dies and spends his time in the Heaven World.
Then he told of how an Esoteric student works on as a Helper after he dies until about a month before his archetype is sounded. Then he goes to the Third Heaven, and on up to the World of Life Spirit to get a new impetus on life. Then he views several lives and makes his choice. After that he starts downward, building his different vehicles, starting with the mind, desire, and vital bodies. He builds his dense body and is then born.
The lecturer spoke of the material side and showed the students a baby that had been born that day in the United States. He took them back two lives before this present birth to prove to them the truth of his statement and let them know that it was true. He showed them these scenes by means of the Jupiterian Consciousness which is something like moving pictures.
They saw a fine English baby born, grow up, marry, and have four children of her own. They saw her grow old and die. They saw her enter Purgatory and they heard her screaming from pain and saw her begging for mercy. They saw her to the First Heaven, then to the Second Heaven, and finally to the Third Heaven.
They saw the same ego wake up and ascend to the World of Life Spirit and come down and view several lives. In the life that she chose they saw an accident that would cause her death when she would be about ten years old. They saw her making her different bodies. They saw her when she was tied into her dense body and when she was shown her future life for the last time.
They witnessed the birth of this ego, as a baby reborn to proud American parents who were glad to have him. The boy grew and finally the mother took him to school for the first time. The students saw the little boy clinging to his mother and saw how the child's love made tears come into her eyes. She left him and hurried home and sat down and cried. Then she got up and kissed all his playthings.
They heard the mother say, "If anything should happen to him I would die." They could see a change taking place in her. They saw the haughty, cold nature melt away and saw how love and sympathy were born in her. She really showered him with love and kindness until he was struck by an automobile and instantly killed. They saw some people carry the dead boy home and his mother took his body and laid it on his bed.
"Charles, my life is over," she said. "I never prayed that you should be spared to me."
The students saw the funeral and how the boy's mother came home, went to bed, and in four days she passed on. She never saw Charles, for he went to the Children's World. In about fourteen months this child was reborn as a girl into another family that lived not far from where he used to live. This child came to the parents to teach them love and sympathy and he accomplished it.
"Why was he reborn in the United States the last two times," asked a lady student.
"When she was a woman," said the instructor, "the people with whom she made karma had outlived their development in England as well as she had. She was reborn here to progress onward and she will."
Some Helpers even know where some of the bodies which they used in past lives are buried. I have heard of one instance which may interest you and show you another kind of proof that these Helpers have had that reincarnation is a fact.
One night a Helper took one of his friends up the Nile River in Egypt as far as the Egyptians live and they saw the ruins of many ancient buildings. They went through the Valley of the Kings where the dead rulers of old Egypt were buried. Many of these tombs have been opened and their contents removed during the years that have passed since then. They found one tomb some distance away that had not been opened and they saw the body of a man in it. This tomb was about a half mile underground in a solid rock which had been hollowed out. The tomb also contained a large amount of gold, silver, and diamonds which will never be found.
All the dead are buried on the west bank of the Nile River as the sun sets west of it. The land is called the Land of the Dead or the Land of the Setting Sun.
The moon and stars were shining brightly and the Helpers could see very well. The Helpers went all around the pyramids but did not go in any of them. They saw row after row of sphinxes where there had been temples.
The Helpers met an old man who could see them in their higher vehicles. He spoke to them and asked them if they were sightseeing and they told him that they were looking the country over.
"There is much to see and learn here," said the old man, "but no one seems to be interested in the dead just now."
"We once lived here," said one of the Helpers. "It was about 9,000 years ago."
"Yes, her body is still there wrapped in linen," the old man said.
The lady Helper spoke up quickly and said, "Where is it? I want to see it."
The old man took them about a mile farther on in the desert and told them to look down. With the help of their spiritual sight, which Helpers have when out of their bodies, they looked down and saw a pyramid about the size of a large building hundreds of feet down under the sand. There they saw a lady's body lying in a rock coffin. The body looked very well preserved. One Helper thought it looked as if it had just been placed in the coffin. It had been in the dry hot sand for centuries.
There were a number of covered jars near by. One jar contained the heart. The intestines were in the second jar and some other organs were in the third jar. The lady's crown, or headdress, was on top of the rock coffin. There was a jar of wheat, one of corn, one of barley, and one of water.
There was some writing on the walls of the room in Egyptian hieroglyphics which told who the lady was and her station in life.
One Helper later told his friend that he saw very little difference between her appearance now and her dead body of the past except that at that time her complexion was copper colored and she was much prettier.
The man Helper saw where his body of that ancient time was buried. He saw that there was nothing left of it but the boat and the cloth that it had been buried in. His body had been buried among the nobles whose graves were cut in the solid rock and then sealed up. Most of these tombs had been opened and robbed.
This old man whom the Helpers met was a Liberated One who is helping the people there as much as he can.
"I am having a hard time instructing the people in this country for they do not want to understand and see what I am talking about," the old man said. "But there is a day coming when the people will be glad to listen to anyone, for this country will be overrun by soldiers and this part of the world will one day be destroyed. Children, be good and do the best you can by all." Then he disappeared from them.
The Helpers had a very fine time on this visit to Egypt and found many interesting things which they were very glad to see.
Yes, reincarnation is a fact and everyone will learn this sometime. As we go along life's journey we should always keep before our mind's eye this verse from the Bible.
"So then each one of us shall give account of himself to God." — Romans 4:12.
How often we read in our daily newspapers of catastrophes which have taken place the day before, while we calmly went about our accustomed duties, unconscious of the troubles of our brothers and sisters elsewhere, perhaps on the other side of the world. We have read of thousands dying in a flood, or hundreds killed by the eruption of a volcano, or by a hurricane, or by a series of tornadoes. We will consider catastrophes and try to find out what can be done to prevent them in the future.
In the sixth chapter of Genesis we find the story of the flood which is one of the great catastrophes of the Earth Period. In the first five chapters we are told how God, the Architect of our Solar System, created the Heaven and the Earth and how by means of the spoken word He, created the mineral, the plant, the animal, and the human life waves. Adam represented the human race of that time.
The people of the Earth were reincarnated many times before the time of the flood which caused the continent of Atlantis to sink. Many generations of people were born and people still had negative spiritual sight which they later lost. Enoch was one of these people and the most advanced man of his time.
The Bible says, "And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him." This means that he could see and speak to Jehovah, the race God who was caring for these people. Enoch was reborn as Noah and his greatest work was the building of the ark according to God's plan. Noah and his family and a nucleus of all the animals, then living were saved when the flood came and covered the Earth for a long time. The mass of humanity was destroyed from the face of the Earth at the time of the flood. They have been reborn again, with the exception of those who had not learned to build lungs.
The reason for this wholesale destruction is given in the Bible where we read the words, "And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only of evil continually."
We are told that most of the people had become so evil that God decided to destroy them. God loved Noah because he was a good man and just and kind to everyone. God told Noah that he was going to destroy the people because they had become so wicked, and he instructed Noah to build the ark. After this great ark was completed the rain came and the masses of the people were drowned in the rising waters, but Noah and his family were saved.
In the ninth chapter of Genesis we read the words: "Who so sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." This means if a man kills a man he will he killed in a future life.
The Bibie tells us that the people of that time were evil and so had to be punished. Mystics and Esotericists know that the egos that Jehovah was directing were reborn time after time and will come back many more times. Since this is true we can see that we were once inhabitants living on Atlantis, as the land was then called, and that we were either among those in the flood, or we were in the Desire Wotid awaiting rebirth.
W. Scott-Elliot in his book, The Story of Atlantis and the Lost Lemuria, says, "A record of the world's progress during the period of the Fourth or Atlantean Race must embrace the history of many nations, and register the rise and fall of many civilizations."
We are told that this continent was destroyed by a series of catastrophes. Some of the catastrophes were very great, while others were comparatively unimportant landslides such as occur from time to time now. There were four great catastrophes which occurred thousands of years apart. The last of these submergences came between 12,000 B.C. and 9,000 B.C.
There was a time when a great civilization flourished on the Atlantean continent and the people were ruled by many good kings who could communicate with the Higher Beings working to help advance humanity on the Earth. During this time the government was just and helpful to all, and the arts and sciences were developed to a high degree. The people had many wonderful mechanical inventions which were later lost and are just now being rediscovered by our mechanical geniuses who once lived on that vast land.
After a period of about one hundred thousand years of good government and progress a great change took place and the people became more and more evil. They began the practice of black magic which had a terrible effect on them. The used their knowledge of the working of nature's law for selfish purposes. They drove the good people of that time out and became so brutal, cruel, and fierce that they brought an awful retribution down upon themselves.
Long before this the Initiates of that time were led to Egypt, which was thinly populated at that time, and a great body of colonists was brought from Atlantis and the great Pyramid of Gizeh was built to preserve the records of humanity up to that time. The Initiates knew that there would he another flood in the future and there were two more. The records which were preserved in the great pyramid are hidden away. When the time comes they will be brought to light and we shall know all about the history of ancient times. The Memory of Nature also has a record of all that transpired.
Cairo was built on the edge of a large sea that covered much of what is now northern Africa. The people built the pyramid of Gizeh out in the lake about seven and a half miles from Cairo. They built huge dikes and then siphoned the water and built the foundation on the solid rock and then built it upward. When the pyramid was completed, the walls were removed and the water kept the people away. The Sphinx was also built at this time and it was entirely covered by water when the sea was allowed to rush in. This is recorded in the Memory of Nature.
The Bible tells us about many disasters or cataclysms of various kinds. For instance, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah took place in the time of Abraham. The Lord appeared to Abraham as he sat in the door of his tent in the heat of the day. The Lord was accompanied by two Invisible Helpers who were Archangels. Abraham was told that Sodom and Gomorrah were to be destroyed because of the wickedness of the people. He was very compassionate and he bargained for the lives of the righteous people that the Lord might find within the city of Sodom.
Two invisible Helpers went to the gate of Sodom that night to investigate and they found only one good family in the entire city and only Lot and his daughters were finally saved. The people tried to get a hold of the Helpers for they wanted to kill them. Lot tried to hold them back and the people nearly broke down the door. The Helpers pulled Lot into the house and closed the door. The people at the door were made temporarily blind so they could not cause any more trouble. The Helpers assisted Lot and his family in their flight out of the city but his wife turned.
After sunrise Lot and his daughters entered Zoar and then we are told that the Lord rained brimstone and fire upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah and the cities were completely destroyed. From the Bible account we know that these wicked people were destroyed by volcanic eruptions caused by the evil thoughts and deeds of the people who lived there.
One of the strangest of all catastrophes was the destruction of the ancient cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum in 79 A.D. It happened during the reign of Titus just before the capture of Jerusalem. The volcano of Vesuvius had been inactive for a long time. Suddenly it belched forth torrents of liquid lava and mud which fell on these cities on the bay of Naples.
The city of Pompeii was covered by fifteen feet of falling cinders and Herculaneum was covered with a sea of sulphurous mud eighty feet thick in many places. The cities were completely buried and even their location was forgotten. Many years later excavations were made and a part of Pompeii was uncovered and the streets, baths, temples, and other buildings were studied by archaeologists.
It is easy for Esoteric students to guess why the people living in these cities were destroyed. They had lived very wicked lives in the past and had earned this karma. The history of the world consists largely of the accounts of the rise and fall of nations. We read where one army destroyed another, where whole cities were sacked and burned, and the inhabitants enslaved and killed. This has been going on for centuries and the end is not in sight. We have not advanced very far in evolution and seem to evolve very slowly, indeed.
The Memory of Nature reveals that the people who lost their lives when Pompeii and Herculaneum were destroyed by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius were particularly wicked in past lives. They were reborn in about 1079 A.D. and again live in Italy. The barbarians drove them from their homes. Some went to Norway and Sweden, some went to Ireland, some wandered into France, some went to Germany, but most of them went to Belgium.
They fled for their lives and had a hard time during that incarnation. The most wicked ones were the ones who went to Belgium. They were reborn to their descendants years later and took part in the World War which started in 1914. The wholesale slaughter which took place during that time when the Germans crossed Belgium going into France took many of them. The desire for life and for revenge brought these egos back earlier than usual. They have now paid off enough karma so that they can work the rest off in service. Let us hope that the desire for revenge has died with them.
I have been told that earthquakes are due to the people practicing sorcery or black magic. Black magicians evoke elementals and stir them up. This makes the Gnomes restless. The Gnomes are useful Nature Spirits who work for mankind, producing the minerals and jewels in the earth. The evil vibrations of the people who live in a locality affect the work of the Gnomes.
The Earth consists of nine strata and a central core. The strata are not of equal thickness. In the book The Cosmo- Conception by Max Heindel there is an excellent description of these strata. The following is a brief description of the various strata of the Earth.
(1) The Mineral Earth stratum is the stony crust of the Earth upon which we live.
(2) The Fluidic Stratum is somewhat like a thick paste that has the quality of expansion similar to a highly explosive gas. This strata is held in place by the great pressure of the mineral strata. If this pressure were removed the fluidic strata would cause a very great explosion and would disappear.
(3) The Vapor Stratum is the third stratum of the Earth. This is said to contain an ever-flowing and pulsating life, similar to that in the Desire World which surrounds and interpenetrates our Earth.
(4) The Water Stratum contains all the germinal possibilities of all that exists upon the surface of the Earth.
(5) The Seed Stratum contains the original source of life from which came the impetus used in building all the forms on Earth.
(6) The Fiery Stratum is said to possess sensation. The feelings of pleasure, pain, sympathy, and hate have their effect upon the Earth.
(7) The Refracting Stratum contains all the forces which are known to us as the "Laws of Nature". When man began his conscious career these forces were much worse than at the present time. As mankind becomes more moral, the forces in this stratum improve to the same extent. Evil moral conduct has a tendency to unleash these strong forces and cause the Nature Spirits to do much damage on the Earth. The efforts of humanity to promote the welfare of others cause these forces to be less harmful.
The condition of the forces in this stratum of the Earth indicate at all times the moral condition of humanity.
In The Cosmo- Conception we read the following: "From the Esoteric point of view, the "hand of God" which smites a Sodom or a Gomorrah is not a foolish superstition, for as surely as there is individual responsibility to the law of Consequence which brings to each person the just results of his deeds whether for good or evil, so is there also community and national responsibility, which brings upon groups of men corresponding results for their collective acts. Nature forces are the general agents of such retributive justice, causing floods, or earthquakes, or the beneficent formation of oil or coal for various groups according to their deserts."
(8) The Atomistic Stratum seems to have the property of multiplying many fold the things in it which have been definitely formed.
(9) This stratum contains forces for the material expression of the Earth Spirit.
(10) This stratum is the center of being of the Earth Spirit.
Volcanic eruptions are caused by the Nature forces in the seventh stratum being unleashed and given freedom of action. They in turn disturb the fiery stratum and the agitation spreads outward to the crater of the volcano which is at one end of a shaft from this stratum to the surface of the Earth. There are many of these shafts in the different parts of the Earth. Some of them are called extinct volcanoes but others become active from time to time. Most of the material thrown out from an active volcano comes from the material of the fluidic stratum which is highly explosive. The material erupted cools when it comes into contact with the atmosphere and hardens, forming a hard crust of lava and dust which in time clogs up the opening and the volcanic eruption ceases for a time.
The reflected immorality and the anti-spiritual tendencies of humanity are the direct causes of the destructive volcanic eruptions that seem to be occurring with greater frequency in modern times. The evil thoughts and deeds of men and women arouse the Nature forces away down in the seventh stratum of the Earth and cause these volcanic outbursts that are often exceedingly destructive.
Max Heindel, a well-known writer on Mystic matters, says the following on this subject: "It is generally profligate and degenerate peoples who succumb to these catastrophes. They, together with others whose destiny, self-generated under the law of Consequence, for various reasons, involves a violent death, are gathered from many lands by the superhuman forces, to the point where the eruption is to occur."
Let us now consider a different kind of catastrophe and the, real case of the disaster that brought about the death of over eleven hundred people.
During the World War a great ship loaded with ammunition for the Allies was torpedoed off the coast of Ireland. This ship sank in less than twenty minutes and carried hundreds of men, women, and children to their watery graves.
Submarines cannot observe the rules of international law for they are frail undersea boats that can be destroyed by a single gunshot if they attempt to stop a ship and take it as a prize of war. Submarines do not have room on board, to care for the passengers and crew of a ship.
Now let us see what the Memory of Nature reveals concerning this catastrophe, or tragedy. The people who went down on this large ship were engaged in the merchant marine trade between Egypt, Crete, and Greece, three lives before: The Egyptians were good sailors at that time. Their ships were covered on the outside with copper and bronze to prevent leaking, and they were triple driven. That is, they had three decks of oarsmen for greater speed. At that time the other nations did not have this kind of ships.
Later the Athenians built triremes which were ships that had three tiers or banks of oars. Each tier thus required an oar about a yard longer than the one immediately beneath it. There were about two hundred rowers on each trireme. The Egyptian ships were much stronger than the other ships and Egypt was then mistress of the seas.
The Egyptians were jealous of the merchants of Crete and Greece and one day when they met a number of these boats near the coast of Spain they ran into them and sank the ships.
While the ships from Crete and Greece were floundering in the water, helplessly, a captain of one of the ships, told the Egyptian commander that he hoped to get him, and all his men on a ship some day and sink them all, even if he had to lose his life to do it. All the ships in the fleet sank except this one ship. This ship was commanded by the sea captain who wanted to drown the Egyptians and took an oath to do so. This captain and his ship finally reached the shores of Portugal in safety.
On his death-bed some years later, he remembered his oath to get that Egyptian on a ship and sink it some day. He had harbored this thought of revenge all that time. I never got a chance at the dogs for sinking my ships," he said. "This caused me to lose my fortune."
When this man was reborn in this life he became a sailor and was finally given command of the ship that was sunk. The Lords of Destiny drew together the men who had sunk these ships through jealousy and others who were to die in the same way.
The captain was eager to take his ship on this journey and gladly went to his death, for he had a feeling of satisfaction. The Memory of Nature shows that he could have left the ship lane and saved his ship from being sunk, but he said to himself, "Why, should I run when I have been waiting for this opportunity to have this ship sunk and these people drowned."
This man went down with the ship but we shudder to think of the misery caused by such revenge. He was an agent of the Lords of Destiny to a certain extent, but he heaped up more karma for himself which will have to be liquidated some day. His punishment in the Desire World must have been very severe.
Now that is what is holding the people of this planet back. They have so many grudges and so much ill feeling. They have been oppressing each other for many lives. They cannot forget their ancient grievances and they are so anxious to get even. People from different races have been reborn in other lands and the destinies of people are interwoven. The old Greeks have been reborn principally in Italy, England, and the United States. The Ethiopians were residents of Egypt at one time and had much contact with the Greeks and Romans. Once the Greeks conquered the Egyptians and later they lost their power over them. The Ethiopians defeated Italy at one time and there is an ancient grudge between them. But they are not the only nations who are making this grave mistake.
There have been many great catastrophes in recent times. I found that by adding the casualties in the Chicago Daily News Almanac for the year 1936 that 595,466 deaths were caused by earthquakes between the years 1902 and 1936. During the same period floods caused the deaths of 182,102 people. Windstorms took the lives of 9,489. The loss from the sinking of ships during this time was also considerable. These figures were taken from the list of recent earthquakes, eruptions, and catastrophes, and does not include minor losses that have occurred in various places over the earth.
We can see that volcanoes are a real menace to human beings. Most thinking persons must come to the conclusion that there is some reason for these catastrophes. Many people instinctively feel that we are in some way to blame for the troubles and afflictions that beset us. Our Christian Bible gives a great many instances where people were punished for their wrongdoing, and the reasons are plainly stated. The prophets all through the years have been warning the people to be good and thus avoid punishment. If the people of today would heed these warnings and follow the teachings laid down by Christ Jesus there would be no more earthquakes in the future because these karmic debts could all be paid off in service to people and animals.
We can be sure that the people who have been killed in volcanic eruptions and fires have deserved these violent deaths and that they have been reborn in those places to fulfill their destiny. They reaped as they sowed in past lives. It will be the same with us. If we are bad we shall reap sorrow. If we are good we shall be rewarded by being born in more fortunate circumstances.
I used to wonder why the people of China had so many floods to disturb the course of their lives. In recent years we have read of many floods and droughts in China which caused thousands of deaths among the poor Chinese people.
I have been told the reasons why the people in China are suffering from so many catastrophes and why the nation is declining at the present time. For thousands of years the people living in China have brutally treated people of their own race and others. They have been selfish and lacked friendliness for other nations. They were greedy for wealth. Those people who would not pay them homage were crushed out, starved out, and flooded out. Today they are reaping what they have sown in the far distant past. As we read our daily newspapers and see what is going on in the world we can see that what has been said about the people of China also applies to all other nations.
In order to illustrate the great law of Karma as it applies to nations. I will tell you of some other catastrophes of modern times and what the people did in past lives to earn such fate.
We will consider another ship that was sunk. This ship was on a voyage from Europe to New York with a large number of passengers aboard. This ship was lost by collision with an iceberg and over fourteen hundred passengers and crew members perished. On board this ship, there were many prominent persons who were lost.
When the people of America read of this great disaster they were saddened to hear of the sudden death of all these hundreds of persons. Many persons thought it was an accident and that those who lost their lives were merely the victims of fate, that they just happened to be on the ship and were lost when it sank suddenly after striking a huge iceberg. Esoteric students know that we do not pass on by chance and that we live until the time comes for our archetypes to cease vibrating unless we destroy our lives by committing suicide. An accident is a misapplied name for fate.
The Memory of Nature revealed the following concerning the people who went down on this ship some years ago. Most of these people were feudal lords and rich vassals two lives before. They used to send their rebellious subjects to sea in bad ships and have them drowned in the ocean. When these poor victims were about to go down on the leaky old ships they realized what had been done to them and they cursed these feudal lords and rich vassals. Thus these rich, but wicked, men had the curses of many of their victims upon them.
In a past life the captain of this ship was a rich ship owner who displeased one of the feudal lords in some way. He was sent out to sea and never came back. This man lost his life because the feudal lord planned to get rid of him in this cruel way. When that man was reborn as a man he gladly sent this huge ship to her doom.
I have been told that when this ship went down there was a mummy on board which had been taken from Egypt and put in a museum. Finally a replica of the mummy was made and the mummy was put in the basement of the building. Someone discovered it and purchased it and had it taken on board that ship which never reached this country. The Egyptians in olden times wanted to be as close to the earth as possible. When they were shepherd kings it was all right to mummify the kings. At that time all the people of importance were mummified. The kings and their families and the priests had their bodies thus preserved.
The priests of a later time were acquainted with elementals and knew some black magic and created elementals to protect the bodies of these people. It took twelve months to create these bad thought- forms. I have been told that the mummy on-board had nothing to do with the sinking of the ship, but that the evil elementals about it did make the people foolhardy. It is said that they went along happily thinking that the iceberg was of no consequence until it was too late to save themselves. Thus the elementals were liberated and the salt water soon disintegrated the mummy.
Let us now consider the Iroquois Theater fire and what happened to five hundred and seventy-one men, women, and children and what was the real cause of their suffering and death. I shall tell you briefly the story of what happened in the Iroquois Theater.
This fire is the greatest tragedy that has befallen the city of Chicago. It occurred on December 30, 1903. This theater was situated on Randolph Street between State and Dearborn Streets. Almost six hundred people, most of whom were women and children, were burned and smothered to death. The theater was crowded with spectators standing around the walls two or three deep.
The Iroquois Theater was a so-called fireproof building but it had barred exits, a defective fire curtain, and an inadequate lighting equipment. The fire started with a little flicker of flames in the scenery above the stage. A stage employee tried to extinguish it, but the fire spread rapidly and the people were soon terror stricken. One of the actors shouted to the people to be quiet and go out in order. The orchestra leader urged the musicians to go on playing, but one by one they dropped their instruments and disappeared through their exit under the stage.
Some of the men taking part fled just in time to escape the torrent of fire that rushed out into the auditorium. The people on the stage tried to lower the fire curtain but it stuck and remained up several feet from the lower edge of the stage. A door in the rear of the stage was let open and the draft thus formed changed the stage instantly into a bright mass of flames which were then hurled out over the heads of the people.
The terrified people rushed to the exits and found that they were securely locked and impassable. These exits were soon jammed with human beings fighting for life. Many fell and were crushed by the onrush. The fire swept through the theater, burning many to black charred, and unrecognizable forms and suffocating others with its heat and gases. When the firemen finally entered the building they found the dead piled eight or ten feet high at the doors. Many people were found to be alive and were carried to a place of safety. It is said that five hundred and seventy-one persons lost their lives in fifteen minutes.
This is a sad story and caused much sorrow and grief to those who were related to the victims. A man I knew lost his wife, his daughter, and his granddaughter in this fire and his hair turned white in a few days from grief. Later I met a girl who had a seat on the main floor that afternoon. She told me that she walked out over the tops of the seats and managed to escape, but was almost a nervous wreck for over a year from the shock and terror that she experienced.
l expect that you have guessed that these victims had caused the death of other people by fire in some past life and you are right. The Memory of Nature revealed the following story. When Rome was young, a band, or race of people, came down from the north and settled near Rome. These were Celts. Other Celtic people settled in Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and Brittany.
One night the Roman soldiers surrounded these neighboring people and burned them all. I cannot tell you the details, but you can imagine the terror of these poor people. In 1903 for the first time these people who were Roman soldiers were all gathered together to meet their fate in the Iroquois Theater fire. Some had come to birth two or three times before they were caught in the fire. Although they were women and children, when they met death in this fire they had been ruthless Roman soldiers when they burned their neighbors, and piled up this bad karma which they had to meet and pay off in this last life.
Perhaps you wonder when man started to create karma for himself and who guided and cared for the people in the earlier stages of man's development. When the members of our infant humanity were locked into their bodies for the first time and were given free choice, the Desire World was practically free of entities, but as men's desires gained control over their weak wills they began to create different monsters in the Desire World who then tormented them when they passed out at death. Today these elementals, or monsters have grown to an enormous size and are very fierce.
In very early times before man was tied in a physical body he had negative spiritual sight and his consciousness was unbroken. He could see into the Desire World any time he wished, and he could communicate with the Higher Beings who had him in charge. At that time Beings from several of the other planets of our Solar System were working with humanity here on Earth. Man willingly obeyed these High Beings that they could see and hear. But when man began to think, he became responsible for his own karma. The karma that man has now generated will last until he becomes a Liberated One.
For our next example of the law of Karma we will consider the eruption of Mt. Pelee on the island of Martinique which lies out in the Atlantic Ocean not far from the West Indies.
During the months of May, June, and August 1902 the volcano on this island erupted several times and killed 31,000 people This volcano destroyed several beautiful towns and partly buried them with gray mud, huge boulders, and ashes. Some of these boulders were eight or ten feet in diameter. At one place these stones were encased in mud and packed like cobblestones in street paving. These boulders covered many acres of land.
Before the volcano erupted the people were warned by the deep thunder like roarings that they heard coming from the mountain, and by the sulphurous gas which became dangerous in the neighborhood. Thousands of persons were killed and burned and their houses were entirely destroyed. They were buried in the hot ashes that fell upon them. The steam and ashes were thrown high in the air by the forces within the Earth.
Some of the people left the villages when the first eruption occurred. Later they returned to their homes thinking that the danger was past. Then the volcano became active again and caused the death of many more of the native people living on this island.
Some geologists who risked their lives to study this volcanic outburst and its results soon after the tragedy did not know what actually caused the catastrophe on the island of Martinique. One of them wrote a very good account of what he saw. He tried to use his reasoning mind, but this was not sufficient to reveal the real cause.
This eruption was caused by the evil deeds and thoughts of these people in former lives. Their evil thoughts formed the archetype of this destruction long ago when they lived in southern Europe. When they died and were later reborn on the island of Martinique it followed them and hung lower and lower over the land until the clock of destiny struck and Mt. Pelee burst into great activity.
The Nature Spirits also had a hand in this work of destruction. The Gnomes dislike confusion and evil and went deeper and deeper into the earth. When they reached the fiery stratum, which is connected with the shaft of the volcano, and leads up to the cone, the gases, melted rock, and mud from within the earth rushed out and destroyed the neighboring country. The Sylphs of the air and the Undines of the sea helped in the work of destruction by causing tidal waves. The evil thoughts of the people themselves were responsible. The Nature Spirits are not to be blamed for they are beneficent spirits when surrounded by humble and loving people who live good lives.
In order to understand who these egos were, who had been gathered together at Mt. Pelee and destroyed by the eruption of the Volcano and tidal waves, we have to go back a long period in history. About 1800 B.C. some Indo-European nomads found their way into the peninsula of Greece. Others from the same locality went to Greece about 1500 B.C. and have been called Dorians. They were a fierce, ignorant class of nomads. They reached the Peloponnesus and subdued their early kinsmen, the Achaeans as well as the Aegean townsmen. The island of Crete was invaded by both these large groups of people who took all their belongings with them when they traveled from place to place. These people took or destroyed everything in sight after their arrival and they kept many of the people as slaves.
The well-to-do inhabitants of the Cretan and Aegean regions had developed a very high civilization which was even superior to our present one. These people were overwhelmed by the Greek invasions and fled to the sea and boarded their ships and sailed away. They attempted to enter the Nile delta, but were repulsed and driven away. Many of these unfortunate, people perished at sea, but some succeeded for awhile in settling in southern Palestine.
By 1200 B.C. the civilization of these people, submerged by the barbarian Greeks, perished and their writings were entirely lost. The intense hate that was engendered by the people who were forced out of their homes and country, tended to draw these invaders to them in later lives. This caused these ancient barbaric invaders to meet the same fate they had meted out to the innocent people. I shall explain how this took place.
The Memory of Nature revealed that when these barbarous people went to Crete and the nearby country they burned the homes of the people and many of the inhabitants perished in them. The barbarians killed the old people, the weak, the infirm, and the ugly. They kept the pretty women and the strong men who were unable to escape and made slaves of them.
After these Cretan refugees had gone from place to place and been refused admission, some of them finally drifted into the Atlantic Ocean. They were carried to the island of Martinique, by the Higher Ones who used them as a nucleus to draw the invaders there to receive their just punishment.
Here is how it was done. When the refugees became established on the island of Martinique, their children were the people who were lost on the ships hunting for a landing place. This happened over a period of several generations. Then a change took place and their children were the people who drove them out of their homes and country and caused their deaths. After a long period of time, the original Cretans were reborn elsewhere and the population consisted largely of the invaders who had caused so much misery.
These ancient Greeks, or early barbarians, were very cruel. When they were reborn on the island of Martinique in their last lives these egos were sent to rebirth in African bodies to meet this fate. The Lords of Destiny can easily do this. I have heard of egos who have been brought to rebirth in African bodies in order to do some special work. Booker T. Washington was one of them. Mr. Heindel speaks of him in The Cosmo-Conception. Then egos have been sent to rebirth in African bodies as a punishment for pride and for cruelty to their human brothers belonging to other races or nations. I have been told that these egos who met death in African bodies when Mt. Pelee erupted will come back in white bodies when they are reborn. The study of the Mystic teachings should make all students very humble.
Madame Helena Blavatsky in her book, The Secret Doctrine, says the following about karma: "It is not, therefore, Karma that rewards or punishes, but it is we who reward or punish ourselves, according as we work with, through and along with nature, abiding by the laws on which harmony depends, or breaking them."
In the book, Coming World Changes, by Dr. and Mrs. Curtis, we find the following about catastrophes:
"When storms, earthquakes, tidal waves, volcanic outbursts or catastrophes of other kinds take place many say, `Behold the work of God! How insignificant is man!' This is false. God never made a storm or a catastrophe of any kind, for God is the great law of love. They are all evidences of man's power. Had man never sent out evil thoughts, wicked words, blasphemies and curses, the Earth's aura could never be so charged with destructive forces that a catastrophe was necessary to dissipate them and bring about equilibrium."
In a book called, A Dweller on Two Planets, by Phylos the Thibetan, appears the following: "Karma is penalty for evil doing, and it is the law of God; it knows no abatement of payment, accepts no vicarious price, but is faithful gaoler over that prison which is life-action; whoso is cast therein shall not come out till every farthing is paid. Beware of doing wrong, for thou must bear the penalty, only thou. Verily, life is long enough to make payment; tis better to have none to make!"
The cure for the ills of humanity is for people to feel and express sympathy and love for each other. If individuals would live up to the highest in their religious teachings they would soon change the conditions of their lives for the better. Through the ages all of the great religious teachers have urged people to deal mercifully with one another and to be honest and truthful. The Christian Bible points out the way and it is really all the guide that is necessary. For those who feel the need of further explanation of the mysteries of life I suggest the Mystic and Esoteric teachings that are taught by certain organizations connected with the seven schools of the Lesser Mysteries. The people of the western world should take up the Rosicrucian Teachings, founded by Max Heindel.
In connection with the subject of catastrophes of nations, I will tell you a little about the misfortunes that have come to individuals because of what they did in one past life. This will give us a broader understanding of this important subject. Perhaps this knowledge will help us to understand ourselves and others better and enable us to be of more service to humanity.
One morning a man who is a Helper stopped off a train in an eastern city and started to go down a street. Before he had gone very far he met an African-American man who had no arms. This poor man was poorly dressed and looked unhappy. He asked the stranger for something to eat.
"Where can you get something to eat?" inquired the stranger.
"In the depot," answered the poor man.
They went back and the Helper ordered a breakfast for the man and started to feed him as soon as the food was served. While he was feeding the man some people whom he had met on the train, came into the lunch room and saw him. The little boy at once came to the Helper to see what was going on. The parents of the child went up and invited the Helper to their home.
"No, thank you," replied the Helper. "I am on the way to another depot to get a train to continue my journey. I met this man and he asked for some food and I am feeding him."
"May I help you?" asked the lady. "You are too slow."
The lady then took the fork and began feeding the armless man and her husband sat down at the same table. After the man had finished eating, the Helper asked him how he lost his arms.
"I was helping on a farm one day and in some way my arms got caught in a thrashing machine and they were cut off at the shoulder," the man said.
"Tell us your story, said the Helper. "Let us join hands while this man talks and maybe we will see and learn something."
"After I had my arms cut off and was in a hospital," the man continued. "I wanted to die for I knew that I would have a hard life. A voice spoke to me and said, "Look back, cruel old king, and see the misery and suffering you caused by cutting off the arms of your slaves. Though your life will be hard, you will not die until you have suffered as long as your longest victim did. This was many years ago, but you must pay off the debt. Your four henchmen suffered the same fate as you the day you were injured."
After briefly telling his life history the armless man spoke to the Helper. "Tell me the meaning of what I saw and heard that day. Have I ever lived before?"
"Yes, you have lived many time before," replied the Helper. By means of thought he asked someone to let them all see the man's life when he was a king.
They found out that this man was a Babylonian king and had a great number of people under him. Some of the people were white but the slaves were African. He worked these slaves very hard and when they failed to complete the tasks that he gave them, he had his men cut their arms off above the elbow, and cast them off to die. Some of these unfortunate people were destroyed by wild beasts. Others lived for many years, while some of his victims died at once.
"I have been this way for ten years," the man said.
"I saw another man without any arms in the city where I live," the Helper told him.
The travelers offered the poor man some money but he refused it. I do not want any because someone would take it out of my pocket," he said.
After that the Helper went home with the boy's parents and made a short stay and then he left for his train.
Contemporary Mystic Christianity
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