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XII. Evolution on the Earth
The Polarian Epoch
While the material which now forms the Earth was yet a part of the Sun, it was, of course in a fiery condition; but as the fire does not burn spirit, our human evolution commenced at once, being confined particularly to the Polar Region of the Sun.
The highest evolved beings which were to become human were the first to appear. The substances which now form the Earth were all molten, and the atmosphere was gaseous, yet man recapitulated his mineral stage anew.
From that attenuated chemical substance of the sun man himself built his first mineral body, assisted by the Lords of Form. If this statement is objected to on the ground that man could not build unconsciously, the case of the mother can be cited in answer. Is she conscious of building the body of the babe in her womb? Yet surely no one will say that she has nothing to do with it! The only difference is that the mother builds unconsciously for the babe; and man built unconsciously for himself.
Man's first dense body did not even remotely resemble his present splendidly organized vehicle. That has been evolved only in the course of myriads of years. The first dense body was a large, baggy object with an opening at the top, from which an organ projected. This was a kind of organ of orientation and direction. In the course of time the dense body drew more closely together and condensed. If it came too close to places of greater heat than it could endure, it disintegrated. In time the organ grew sensitive to the condition that threatened destruction and the dense body automatically moved to a safer place.
This organ has now degenerated into what is called the pineal gland. Sometimes it is called "the third eye," but that is a misnomer, because it never was an eye, but rather the localized organ for the sensing of heat and cold, which faculty is now distributed over the entire dense body. During the Polarian Epoch this sense was thus localized, as the sense of sight is now in the eye, and that of hearing in the ear. The extension of the sense of feeling since that time indicates the manner in which the entire body will be improved, so that at some future time any part of it will be able to perceive all things. The senses of sight and hearing will be extended over the entire body, as the sense of feeling is now. Them man will be all eyes and ears. Specialized sense organs indicate limitation. Sense perception by the whole is comparative perfection.
At the early stage of which we are now speaking there was a kind of propagation. These immense baggy creatures divided in halves in a manner similar to the division of cells by fission, but the separated portions would not grow, each remaining only half as large as the original form.
The Hyperborean Epoch
At different points on the fiery globe there began in the course of time the formation of crust-islands in a sea of fire.
The Lords of Form appeared, with the Angels (humanity of the Moon Period), and clothed man's dense form with a vital body. Those baggy bodies then began to increase in size by drawing to themselves material from the outside, osmosis, as it were. When they propagated, it was no longer by dividing into halves, but into two un-equal parts. Both parts grew until each had attained the original size of the parent.
As the Polarian Epoch was really a recapitulation of the Saturn Period, it may be said that during that time man passed through the mineral state; he had the same vehicle—the dense body—and a consciousness similar to the trance state. For analogous reasons, the plant state was passed through in the Hyperborean Epoch, as man had a dense and a vital body and a dreamless-sleep-consciousness.
Man began his evolution on the Earth after Mars had been thrown off from the central mass, and that which is now the Earth was yet undetached from the Sun; but at the close of the Hyperborean Epoch the incrustation had progressed so far that it had become an obstacle to the progress of some of the higher evolved beings in the Sun. The fiery condition also hindered the evolution of some of the lower grades of creatures, such as man, who at that stage required a denser world for his further development. Therefore, the part which is now the Earth was thrown off from the Sun at the end of the Hyperborean Epoch, and commenced to revolve around the parent body in a somewhat different orbit than at present. Shortly afterwards Venus and Mercury were thrown off for similar reasons.
Crystallization always commences at the pole of a planet where motion is slow. The consolidated part gradually works outwards towards the equator in obedience to the centrifugal force. If that force is stronger than the cohesive tendency the consolidated mass is thrown outwards into space.
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At the time when the Earth-globe was separated from the parent-mass, it included that part which is now our Moon. On this great globe was evolving the life wave now passing through the human kingdom, also the life waves which entered evolution in the Sun, Moon, and Earth Periods, and are now evolving through the animal, plant and mineral kingdoms.
Mention has been made of the stragglers of various Periods who in later Periods were enabled to take a step upward in evolution. There were some, however, who did not take this step. They did not evolve, and were therefore left further and further behind, until they became a drag and a hindrance to the progressive ones. It became necessary to get them out of the way, that the evolution of the others might not be retarded.
In the beginning of the Lemurian Epoch, these "failures" (note that they were failures, not merely stragglers) had crystallized that part of the Earth occupied by them to such a degree that it become as a huge cinder or clinker, in the otherwise soft and fiery Earth. They were a hindrance and an obstruction, so they, with the part of the Earth they had crystallized, were thrown out into space beyond recall. That is the genesis of the Moon.
The Moon—The Eighth Sphere
The seven Globes, A to G, inclusive, are the field of Evolution. The Moon is the field of Disintegration.
If Earth had not segregated from the original Globe which is now the Sun, the rapidity of the vibrations would have disintegrated man's vehicles. He would have grown so rapidly that the growth of the mushroom would seem slow in comparison. He would have become old before he had time to pass through youth. That such is the effect of too much Sun is shown by the rapidity of growth at the tropics, where maturity and old age are reached much sooner than in the north. On the other hand had the Moon remained with the Earth, man would have crystallized into a statue. The separation of the Earth from the Sun, which now sends its rays from a far distance, enables man to live at the proper rate of vibration, to unfold slowly. The Moon-forces reach him from the exact distance necessary to enable him to build a body of the proper density. But although the latter forces are active in the building of the form, they also cause death when their continued work finally crystallizes the tissues of the body.
The Sun works in the vital body and is the force which makes for life, and wars against the death-dealing Moon force.
The Lemurian Epoch
In this Epoch appeared the Archangels (the humanity of Sun Period) and the Lords of Mind (the humanity of Saturn Period). These Hierarchies were assisted by the Lords of Form, who were given charge of the Earth Period. They helped man to build his desire body, and the Lords of Mind gave the germ of Mind to the greater part of the pioneers.
The Lords of Form vivified the Human spirit in as many of the stragglers of the Moon Period as had made the necessary progress in the three and one half Revolutions which had elapsed since the commencement of the Earth Period, but at that time the Lords of Mind could not give them the germ of Mind. Thus a great part of nascent humanity was left without this link between the threefold spirit and the threefold body.
The Lords of Mind took charge of the higher part of the desire body and of the germinal mind, impregnating them with the quality of separate selfhood, without which no separate, self-contained beings such as we are today would be possible.
We owe to the Lords of Mind the separate personality, with all the possibilities for experience and growth thus afforded. And this point marks the birth of the Individual.
Birth of the Individual
Diagram 1 will make clear the fact that the personality is the reflected picture of the Spirit, the mind being the mirror, or focus.
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As when reflected in a pond, the images of trees appear inverted, the foliage seeming to be the deepest down in the water, so the highest aspect of the spirit (the Divine Spirit) finds its counterpart in the lowest of the three bodies (the dense body). The next highest spirit (the life spirit) is reflected in the next lowest body (the vital body). The third spirit (the human spirit) and its reflection, the third body (the desire body), appear closest of all to the reflecting mirror, which is the mind, the latter corresponding to the surface of the pond—the reflecting medium in our analogy.
The Spirit came down from the higher Worlds during involution; and by concurrent action, the Bodies were built upward in the same period. It is the meeting of these two streams in the focusing Mind that marks the point in time when the individual, the human being, the Ego, is born—when the Spirit takes possession of its vehicles.
Yet we must not suppose that this at once raised man to his present status in evolution, making him the self conscious, thinking being he is today. Before that point could be reached a long and weary road had to be traveled, for at the time we are considering, organs were in their most rudimentary stage and there was no brain that could be used as an instrument of expression. Hence the consciousness was the dimmest imaginable. In short, the man of that day was very far from being as intelligent as our present-day animals. The first step in the direction of improvement was the building of a brain to use as an instrument of mind in the Physical World. That was achieved by separating humanity into sexes.
Separation of the Sexes
Contrary to the generally accepted idea, the Ego is bisexual. Were the Ego sexless, the body would necessarily be sexless also, for the body is but the external symbol of the indwelling spirit.
The sex of the Ego does not, of course, express itself as such in the inner worlds. It manifests there as two distinct qualities—Will and Imagination. The Will is the male power and is allied to the Sun forces; Imagination is the female power and is always linked to the Moon forces. This accounts for the imaginative trend of woman and for the special power which the Moon exercises over the female organism.
When the matter of which the Earth and the Moon were afterwards formed was still a part of the Sun, the body of man-in-the-making was yet plastic, and the forces from that part which afterwards became Sun, and that part which is now Moon worked readily in all bodies, so that the man of the Hyperborean Epoch was hemaphrodite—capable of producing another being from himself without intercourse with any other.
When the Earth separated from the Sun and shortly afterwards threw off the Moon, the forces from the two luminaries did not find equal expression in all, as formerly. Some bodies become more amenable to the forces from one, and some to those from the other.
Influence of Mars
In the part of the Earth Period preceding the separation of the sexes—during the three and one-half Revolutions which intervened between the time when Mars was differentiated and the beginning of the Lemurian Epoch—Mars traveled in a different orbit from the present, and its aura (that part of its finer vehicles which extends beyond the dense planet) permeated the body of the central planet and polarized the iron with it.
As iron is essential to the production of warm, red blood, all creatures were cold-blooded, or rather, the fluid parts of the body were no warmer than the surrounding atmosphere.
When the Earth was set free from the Central Sun, that event changed the orbits of the planets and thus the influence of Mars over the iron in the Earth was minimized. The Planetary Spirit of Mars finally withdrew the remainder of that influence, and although the desire bodies of the Earth and Mars still penetrate, the dynamic power of Mars over the iron (which is a Mars metal) and iron has become available for use on our planet.
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Iron is in reality the basis of separate existence. Without iron the red, heat-giving blood would be an impossibility, and the Ego could have no hold in the body. When red blood developed—in the latter part of the Lemurian Epoch—the body become upright and the time had come when the Ego could begin to dwell within the body and control it.
But to dwell within is not the end and aim of evolution. It is simply a means by which the Ego may better express itself through its instrument, that it may manifest in the Physical World. To that end the sense organs, the larynx, and above all, a brain, must be built and perfected.
During the early part of the Hyperborean Epoch, while the Earth was still united with the Sun, the solar forces supplied man with all the sustenance he needed and he unconsciously radiated the surplus for the purpose of propagation.
When the Ego entered into possession of its vehicles it became necessary to use part of this force for the building of the brain and larynx. The latter was originally a part of the creative organ. The larynx was built while the dense body was yet bent together in the bag-like shape already described, which is still the form of the human embryo. As the dense body straightened and became upright, part of the creative organ remained with the upper part of the dense body and later became the larynx.
Thus the dual creative force which had hitherto worked is only one direction, for the purpose of the creating another being, became divided. One part was directed upward to build the brain and larynx, by means of which the Ego was to become capable of thinking and communicating thoughts to other beings.
As a result of this change only one part of the force essential in the creation of another being was available to one individual, hence it became necessary for each individual to seek the co-operation of another, who possessed that part of the procreative force which the seeker lacked.
Thus did the evolving entity obtain brain consciousness of the outside world at the cost of half its creative power. Previous to that time, it used within itself both parts of that power to externalize another being. As a result of that modification, however, it has evolved the power to create and express thought. Before then, it was a creator in the physical world only; since then it has become able to create in the three worlds.
The Races and Their Leaders
Before considering in detail the evolution of the Lemurians it may be well to take a general survey of the Races and their Leaders.
Some very valuable works on Esotericism, bringing before the public the teachings of the Eastern Wisdom, have nevertheless contained certain mistakes, owing to a misunderstanding of the teachings by those who were so fortunate as to receive them. All books, not written directly by the Elder Brothers, are liable to contain such errors. Considering the extreme intricacy and many complications of the subject, the wonder is not that mistakes do occur, but that they are not more frequent. Therefore the writer does not presume to criticize, recognizing that more numerous and more serious mistakes may be embodied in the present work, owing to his own misconception of the teaching. He simply sets forth in the next few paragraphs what he has received, which shows how the differing (and seemingly contradictory) teaching of two such valuable works as "The Secret Doctrine" by H. P. Blavatsky, and "Esoteric Buddhism," by A. P. Sinnett, may be reconciled.
That part of human evolution which is to be accomplished during the present sojourn of the life wave on our Earth is divisible into seven great stages or Epochs; but these cannot appropriately be called Races. Nothing to which that name could be correctly applied appears until the end of the Lemurian Epoch. From that time different Races succeed one another through the Atlantean and Fifth Epochs, and will extend slightly into the Sixth great Epoch.
The total number of Races—past, present and future—in our scheme of evolution is sixteen; one at the end of the Lemurian Epoch, seven during the Atlantean Epoch, seven more in our present Fifth Epoch and one in the beginning of the Sixth Epoch. After that time there will be nothing that can properly be called a Race.
Races did not exist in the Periods which have preceded the Earth Period and they will not exist in those Periods which follow it. It is only here, at the very nadir of material existence, that the difference is so great between man and man as to warrant the separation into Races.
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The immediate Leaders of humanity (apart from the creative Hierarchies) who helped man to take the first tottering steps in Evolution, after Involution had furnished him with vehicles, were Beings much further advanced than man along the path of evolution. They came on this errand of love from the two planets which are located between the Earth and the Sun—Venus and Mercury.
The Beings who inhabit Venus and Mercury are not quite so far advanced as those whose present field of evolution is the Sun, but they are very much further advanced than our humanity. Therefore they stayed somewhat longer with the central mass than did the inhabitants of the Earth, but at a certain point their evolution demanded separate fields, so those two planets were thrown off, Venus first, and then Mercury. Each was given such proximity to the central orb as insured the rate of vibration necessary for its evolution. The inhabitants of Mercury are the furthest advanced, hence are closer to the Sun.
Some of the inhabitants of each planet were sent to the Earth to help nascent humanity and are know to esoteric scientist as the "Lords of Venus" and the "Lords of Mercury."
The Lords of Venus were leaders of the masses of our people. They were inferior beings of the Venus evolution, who appeared among men and were know as "messengers of the Gods." For the good of our humanity they led and guided it, step by step. There was no rebellion against their authority, because man had not yet evolved an independent will. It was to bring him to the stage where he would be able to manifest will and judgment that they guided him, until he should be able to guide himself.
It was known that these messengers communed with the Gods. They were held in deep reverence and their commands were obeyed without question.
When under the tuition of these Beings mankind had reached a certain stage of progress, the most advanced were placed under the guidance of the Lords of Mercury, who initiated them into the higher truths for the purpose of making them leaders of the people. These Initiates were then exalted to kingship and were the founders of the dynasties of Divine Rulers who were indeed kings "by the grace of God," i.e., by the grace of the Lords of Venus and Mercury, who were as Gods to infant humanity. They guided and instructed the kings for the good of the people and not for self-aggrandizement and arrogation of rights at their expense.
At that time a Ruler held a sacred trust to educate and help his people; to alleviate and promote equity and well-being. He had the light of God to give him wisdom and guide his judgment. Hence, while those kings reigned, all things prospered, and it was indeed a Golden Age. Yet, as we follow the evolution of man in detail, we shall see that the present phase or period of development, though it cannot be called a golden age in any but a material sense, is nevertheless a necessary one, in order to bring man to the point where he will be able to rule himself, for self-mastery is the end and aim of all rulership. No man can safely remain ungoverned who has not learned to govern himself, and at the present stage of development, that is the hardest task that can be given him. It is easy to command others; it is hard to force obedience from oneself.
Influence of Mercury
The purpose of the Lords of Mercury at that time, and of all Hierophants of Mysteries since then, as also of all the esoteric schools of our day, was and is to teach the candidate the art of Self-Mastery. In the measure that a man has mastered himself, and in that measure only, is he qualified to govern others. Were the present rulers of the masses able to govern themselves we should again have the Millennium or Golden Age.
As the Lords of Venus worked on the masses of a long past ago, so do the Lords of Mercury now work on the Individual, fitting him for mastery over self and (incidentally only, not primarily) for mastery over others. This work on their part is but the beginning of what will be an increasing Mercurial influence during the remaining three and one-half Revolutions of the Earth Period.
During the first three and one-half Revolutions Mars held sway, polarizing the iron, preventing the formation of the red blood and keeping the Ego from immuring itself in the body until the latter had attained at the requisite degree of development.
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During the last three and one half Revolutions Mercury will operate to extricate the Ego from its densest vehicle by means of Initiation.
Incidentally, it may be noted that, as Mars polarized the iron, so Mercury has polarized the metal bearing its name and the workings of that metal will show very well this tendency to take the dense body away from the spirit—to liberate the latter from the former.
That dread disease, syphilis, is an example of condition were the Ego is fettered and immured in the body to a particularly cramping extent. Sufficient mercury relieves the condition, lessens the hold of the body upon the Ego and leaves the latter to that comparative freedom within the body, an overdose of mercury causes paralysis, thus taking the dense body from the man in an improper way.
The Lords of Mercury taught man to leave and re-enter the body at will; to function in his higher vehicles independent of the dense body, so that the latter becomes a cheerful dwelling house instead of a closely-locked prison—a useful instrument instead of a clogging fetter.
Therefore esoteric science speaks of the Earth Period as Mars-Mercury, and so it may be said truly that we have been in Mars and are going to Mercury, as taught in one of the esoteric works previously mentioned. It is also true, however, that we have never inhabited the planet Mars, nor are we to leave the earth at some future time to take up our adobe on the planet Mercury, as the other work mentioned states, with the intention of correcting an error in the first one.
Mercury, now being in obscuration, is exercising very little influence on us, but it is emerging from a planetary rest and as time goes on its influence will be more and more in evidence as a factor in our evolution. The coming Races will have much help from the Mercurians, and the people of still later Epochs and Revolutions will have even more.
The Lemurian Race
We are now in a position to understand the information which is to follow concerning the people who lived in the latter part of the Lemurian Epoch, whom we may call the Lemurian Race.
The atmosphere of Lemuria was still very dense—somewhat like the fire-fog of the Moon Period, but denser. The crust of the Earth was just starting to become quite hard and solid in some places, while in others it was still fiery, and between islands of crust was a sea of boiling, seething water. Volcanic outbursts and cataclysms marked this time when the nether fires fought hard against the formation of the encircling wall which was to imprison them.
Upon the harder and comparatively cool spots man lived surrounded by giant fern-forests and animals of enormous size. The forms of both man and animal were yet quite plastic. The skeleton had formed, but man himself had great power in molding the flesh of his own body and that of the animals about him.
When he was born he could hear and feel, but his perception of light cam later. We have analogous cases in animals like cats and dogs, the young of which receive the sense of sight some time after birth. The Lemurian had no eyes. He had two sensitive spots which were affected by the light of the Sun as it shone dimly through the fiery atmosphere of ancient Lemuria, but is was not until nearly the close of the Atlantean Epoch that he had sight as we have it today. Up to that time the building of the eye was in progress. While the Sun was within—while the Earth formed part of the light-giving mass—man need no external illumination; he was luminous himself. But when the dark Earth was separated from the Sun it became necessary that the light should be perceived, therefore as the light rays impinged upon man, he perceived them. Nature built the eye as a light-perceiver, in response to the demand of the already-existing function, which is invariable the case, as Professor Huxley has so ably shown. The amoeba has no stomach, yet it digests. It is all stomach. The necessity for digesting food built the stomach in the course of time, but digestion took place before the alimentary canal was formed. In an analogous manner, the perception of light called forth the eye. The light itself built the eye and maintains it. Where there is no light there can be no eye. In cases where animals have withdrawn and dwelt in caves—keeping away from the light—the eyes have degenerated and atrophied because there were no light rays to maintain them and no eyes were needed in the dark caves. The Lemurian needed eyes; he had a perception of light, and the light was commencing to build the eye in response to his demand.
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His language consisted of sounds like those of Nature. The sighing of the wind in the immense forests which grew in great luxuriance in that super-tropical climate, the rippling of the brook, the howling of the tempest—for Lemuria was storm-swept—the thunder of the waterfall, the roar of the volcano—all these were to him voices of the Gods from whom he knew himself to have descended.
Of the birth of his body he knew nothing. He could not see either it or anything else, but he did perceive his fellow beings. It was, however, an inner perception, like our perception of persons and things in dreams, but with this very important difference, that his dream-perception was clear and rational.
Thus he knew nothing at all about his body, in fact he did not know he had a body any more than we know we have a stomach when that organ is in good health. We remember its existence only when our abuse of it causes us to feel pain there. Under normal conditions we are entirely unconscious of its processes. Similarly did the body of the Lemurian serve him excellently, although he was unaware of its existence. Pain was the means of making him aware of his body and of the world without.
Everything in connection with the propagation of the race and the bringing to birth was done by direction of the Angels under the leadership of Jehovah, the Regent of the Moon. The propagative function was performed as stated times of the year when the lines of force, running from planet to planet, were focussed at proper angles. Thus the creative force encountered no obstruction and parturition was painless. Man was unaware of birth, because at that time he was unconscious of the physical world as he now is during sleep. It was only in the intimate contact of sex relation that the spirit became aware of the flesh and them man "knew" his wife. That is shown is such passages of the Bible as "Adam knew Eve and she bore Seth"; "Elkanah knew Hannah and she bore Samuel"; and Mary's question, "How I shall conceive, seeing I know no man?" This is also the key to the meaning of the "Tree of Knowledge," the fruit of which opened the eyes of Adam and Eve, so that they came to know both good and evil. Previously they had known only good, but when they began to exercise the creative function independently, they were ignorant of stellar influences, as their descendants, and Jehovah's supposed curse was not a curse at all, but a simple statement of the result which must inevitably follow use of their generative force which failed to take into consideration the effect of the stellar rays on childbirth.
Thus the ignorant use of the generative force is primarily responsible for pain, sickness and sorrow.
The Lemurian knew no death because when, in the course of long ages, his body dropped away, he entered another, quite unconscious of the change. His consciousness was not focused in the physical world, therefore the laying aside of one body and the taking of another was no more to him than a leaf or twig drying and falling away from the tree and being replaced by a new growth.
Their language was to the Lemurians something holy. It was not a dead language like ours—a mere orderly arrangements of sounds. Each sound uttered by the Lemurian had power over his fellow-beings, over the animals and even over nature around him. Therefore, under the guidance of the Lords of Venus, who were the messengers of God—the agents of the creative hierarchies— the power of speech was used with great reverence, as something most holy.
The education of the boys differed greatly from that of the girls. The Lemurian methods of education seem shocking to our more refined sensibilities. In order to spare the reader's feelings, only the least cruel of them will be touched upon. Strenuous in the extreme as they may seen, it must be remembered that the Lemurian body was not nearly so high-strung as are the human bodies of the present day; also that it was only by the very harshest measures that the exceedingly dim consciousness could be touched at all. As time went on and the consciousness became more and more awakened, such extreme measures as those used then became unnecessary and have passed away, but at that time they were indispensable to arouse the slumbering forces of the spirit to a consciousness of the outside world.
The education of the boys was designed especially to develop the quality of Will. They were made to fight one another, and these fights were extremely brutal. They were impaled upon spits, with full power to release themselves, but by exercising the will power they were to remain there in spite of the pain. They learned to make their muscles tense, and to carry immense burdens by the exercise of the Will.
The education of the girls was intended to promote the development of the imaginative facility. They also were subjected to strenuous and severe treatment. They were put out in the great forests, to let the sound of the wind in the tree tops speak to them and to listen to the furious outbursts of flood and tempest. They thus learned to have no fear of those paroxysms of nature and to perceive only the grandeur of the warring elements. The frequent volcanic outbursts were greatly valued as a means of education, being particularly conducive to the awakening of the faculty of memory.
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Such educational methods would be entirely out of the question at the present day, but they did not make the Lemurian morbid, because he had no memory. No matter what painful or terrifying experience he endured, everything was forgotten as soon as past. The above mentioned strenuous experiences were for the purpose of developing memory, to imprint these violent and constantly repeated impacts from without upon the brain, because memory is necessary that the experiences of the past may be used as guides to Action.
The education of the girls developed the first germinal, flickering memory. The first idea of good and evil was formulated by them because of their experiences, which worked chiefly on the imagination. Those experiences most likely to leave a recollection were thought "Good;" those which did not produce that much desired result were considered "Evil."
Thus woman become the pioneer in culture, being the first to develop the idea of "a good life," of which she became the esteemed exponent among the ancients and in that respect she has nobly led the vanguard ever since. Of course, as all Egos incarnate alternately as male and female, there is really no pre-eminence. It is simply that those who for the time being are in a dense body of the feminine gender have a positive vital body, and are therefore more responsive to spiritual impacts than when the vital body is negative as in the male.
As we have seen, the Lemurian was a born magician. He felt himself a descendant of the Gods, a spiritual being; therefore his line of advancement was by gaining not spiritual, but material knowledge. The Temples of Initiation for the most advanced did not need to reveal to man his high origin; to educate him to perform feats of magic; to instruct him how to function in the desire world and the higher realms. Such instruction is necessary today because now the average man has no knowledge of the spiritual world, nor can he function in the superphysical realm. The Lemurian, however, in his own way, did possess that knowledge and could exercise those faculties, but on the other hand, he was ignorant of the Laws of the Cosmos of facts regarding the physical world which are matters of common, everyday knowledge with us. Therefore at the School Initiation he was taught art, the laws of Nature and facts relating to the physical universe. His will was strengthened and his imagination and memory wakened so that he could correlate experiences and devise ways and means of action when his past experiences did not serve to indicate a proper course of procedure. Thus, the Temples of Initiation in the Lemurian times were High Schools for the cultivation of Will-power and Imagination, with "post-graduate courses" in Art and Science.
Yet, though the Lemurian was a born magician, he never misused his powers because he felt himself related to the Gods. Under his direction of the Messengers of the Gods, already spoken of, his forces were directed toward the molding of forms in the animal and the plant worlds. It may be hard for the materialist to understand how he could do such work if he could not see the world about him. It is true man could not "see" as we understand the term and as he now sees objects outside in space with his physical eyes. Still, as the purest of our children are clairvoyant to this day while they remain in a state of sinless innocence, the Lemurians possessed an internal perception which gave them only a dim idea of the outward shape of any object; but illuminated so much the brighter its inner nature, its soul-quality, by a spiritual apperception born of innocent purity.
Innocence, however, is not synonymous with Virtue. Innocence is the child of Ignorance and could not be maintained in a universe where the purpose of evolution is the acquisition of Wisdom. To attain that end, a knowledge of good and evil, right and wrong, is essential, also choice of action.
If, having knowledge and choice, man ranges himself on the side of Good and Right he cultivates Virtue and Wisdom. If he succumbs to temptation and does wrong knowingly, he fosters vice.
God's plan is not to be brought to naught, however. Every act is a seed-ground for the Law of Consequence. We reap what we sow. The weeds of wrong action bear flowers of sorrow and suffering, and when the seeds from then have fallen into a chastened heart, when they have been watered by the tears of repentance Virtue will eventually blossom forth. What blessed assurance, that out of every evil we do, Good will eventually accrue, for in our Father's Kingdom naught but Good can endure.
Therefore, the "Fall" with its consequent pain and suffering is but a temporary state where we see through a glass darkly, but anon we shall behold again face to face the God within and without, who is ever perceived by the pure in heart.
The Fall of Man
This is cabalistically described as the experience of one pair who, of course, represent humanity. The key is given in the verse where the Messenger of the Gods says to the woman, "in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children;" the clue is also found in the sentence of death which was pronounced at that same time.
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It will be observed that previous to the Fall the consciousness was not focussed in the physical world. Man was unconsciousness of propagation, birth and death. The Angels who have charge of and work in the vital body (the medium of propagation) regulated the propagative function and brought the sexes together at certain seasons of the year, using the solar and the lunar forces when they produced conditions most propitious for fecundation, the union being achieved unconsciously by the participants at first, but later it produced a momentary physical cognition. Then the period of gestation caused no inconvenience and parturition was painless, the parent being plunged in deep sleep. Birth and death involved no break in the conscious and were therefore non-existent to the Lemurians.
Their consciousness was directed inward. They perceived physical things in a spiritual way, as we perceive them in a dream—at which time all that we see is within ourselves.
When "their eyes opened" and their consciousness was directed outward toward the facts of the physical world, conditions were altered. Propagation was directed, not by the Angels, but by man, who was ignorant of the operation of the Sun and Moon forces. He also abused the sex-function, using it for sense-gratification, with the result that pain attended the process of child-bearing. Then his consciousness became focused in the physical world, although all things did not appear to his vision with clearly defined outlines until the latter part of the Atlantean Epoch. Still he came by degrees to know death because of the break made in his consciousness when it was shifted to the higher worlds at death and back to the physical world at rebirth.
The "opening of the eyes" was brought about in the following manner: We remember that when the sexes separated, the male became an expression for Will, which is one part of the twofold soul-force; the female expressing the other part, Imagination. If woman were not imaginative she could not build the new body in the womb and were not the spermatozoan an embodiment of the concentrated human will, it could not accomplish impregnation and so commence the germination, which results in the continued segmentation of the ovum.
These twin-forces, Will and Imagination, are both necessary to the propagation of bodies. Since the separation of the sexes, however, one of these forces remains within each individual and only the part given out is available for propagation. Hence the necessity for a one-sexed being who expresses the complementary soul-force. This was previously explained; also that the part of the soul-force not used for propagation becomes available for inner growth. So long as man sent out the full, dual sex-force for generation, he could accomplish nothing in the direction of soul-growth for himself. But since then the part not used through the sex organ has been appropriated by the indwelling spirit to build the brain and the larynx for its expression.
Thus man built on, all through the latter part of the Lemurian Epoch and the first two-thirds of the Atlantean Epoch until, by the above mentioned use of this half of his sex-force, he became a fully-conscious, thinking, reasoning, being.
In man the brain is the link between the spirit and the outside world. He can know nothing of the outside world except through the medium of the brain. The sense organs are merely carriers to the brain of impacts from without and the brain is the instrument which interprets and coordinates those impacts. The Angels belonged to a different evolution and had never been imprisoned in a dense and cumbrously slow vehicle such as ours. They had learned to obtain knowledge without a physical brain. Their lowest vehicle is the vital body. Wisdom came to them as a gift, without the necessity of laboriously thinking it out through a physical brain.
Man, however, had to "fall into generation," and work for his knowledge. The spirit, by means of one part of the sex-force directed inward, built the brain to gather knowledge from the physical world, and the same force is feeding and building the brain today. It is subverted from its proper course inasmuch as it should have gone outward for procreation, but man retains it for selfish purposes. No so the Angels. They had experienced no division of their soul-powers, therefore they could send out the dual soul-force without selfish reservation.
The force that goes outward for the purpose of creating another being is Love. The Angels sent our their whole love, without selfishness or desire and in return, Cosmic Wisdom flowed into them.
Man sends out only part of his love; the residue he selfishly keeps and uses to build his inner organs of expression, to improve himself; thus does his love become selfish and sensual. With one part of his creative soul-power he selfishly loves another being because he desires co-operation in propagation. With the other part of his creative soul-power he thinks (also for selfish reasons) because he desires knowledge.
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The Angels love without desire, but man had to go through selfishness. He must desire and work for wisdom selfishly, that he may reach selflessness at a higher stage.
The Angels helped him to propagate even after the subversion of part of the soul-force. They helped him to build the physical brain, but they had no knowledge that could be transmitted by means of it, because they did not know how to use such an instrument and could not speak directly to a brain being. All they could do was to control the physical expression of the love of man and guide it through the emotions in a loving, innocent way, thus saving man the pain and trouble incident to the exercise of the sex-function without wisdom.
Had that regime lasted, man would have remained simply a God-guided automaton and would never have become a personality—an individual. That he had become so is due to a much maligned class of entities called the Lucifer Spirits.
The Lucifer Spirits
These spirits were a class of stragglers in the life wave of the Angels. In the Moon Period they worked themselves far ahead of the great mass of those who are now the most advanced of our humanity. They have not progressed as far as the Angels who were the pioneer humanity of the Moon Period, however, but they were so much in advance of our present humanity that it was impossible for them to take a dense body as we have done; yet they could not gain knowledge without the use of an inner organ, a physical brain. They were half-way between man who has a brain and the Angels who need none—in short, they were demi-gods.
They were thus in a serious situation, The only way they could find an avenue through which to express themselves and gain knowledge was to use man's physical brain, as they could make themselves understood by a physical being endowed with a brain, which the Angels could not.
As said, in the latter part of the Lemurian Epoch man did not see the physical world as we do now. To him the desire world was much more real. He had the dream-consciousness of the Moon Period—an inner picture-consciousness; he was unconscious of the world outside himself. The Lucifers had no difficultly in manifesting to his inner consciousness and calling his attention to his outward shape, which he had not theretofore perceived. They told him how he could cease being simply the servant of external powers, and could become his own master and like unto the gods, "knowing good and evil." They also made clear to him that he need have no apprehension if his body died, inasmuch as he had within himself the creative ability to form new bodies without the mediation of the Angels. All of which information was given with the one purpose of turning his consciousness outward for the acquirement of knowledge.
This the Lucifers did that they might profit by it themselves—to gain knowledge as man acquired it. They brought to him pain and suffering where there was none before; but they also brought him the inestimable blessing of emancipation from outside influence and guidance, thereby starting him on the road to the evolution of his own spiritual powers—an evolution which will eventually enable him to upbuild himself with wisdom such as that of the Angels and other Beings Who guided him before he first exercised free will.
Before man's enlightenment by the Lucifer Spirits he had not known sickness, pain nor death. All of these resulted from the unwise use of the propagative faculty and its abuse for the gratification of the senses. Animals in their wild state are exempt from sickness and pain, because their propagation is carried on under the care and direction of the wise group spirit at only those times of the year which are propitious to that process. The sex-function is designed solely for the perpetuation of the species and under no circumstances for the gratification of sexual desire.
Had man remained a God-guided automaton, he would have known no sickness, pain, no death unto this day; but he would also have lacked the brain-consciousness and independence which resulted from his enlightenment by the Lucifer Spirits, the "light-givers," who opened the eyes of his understanding and taught him to use his then dim vision to gain knowledge of the Physical World which he was destined to conquer.
From that time there have been two forces working in man. One force is that of the Angels, who build new beings in the womb by means of Love which is turned downward for procreation; they are therefore the perpetuators of the race.
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The other force is that of the Lucifers, who are the instigators of all mental activity, by means of the other part of the sex-force, which is carried upward for work in the brain.
The Lucifers are also called "serpents" and are variously represented in different mythologies. More will be said about them when we come to the analysis of Genesis. For the present enough has been said to warrant us in pursuing the main line of investigation, which leads us to follow the progress of man's evolution still further, through the Atlantean and Fifth Epochs, down to the present day.
What has been said about the enlightenment of the Lemurians applies to only a minor portion of those who lived in the latter part of that Epoch, and who became the Seed for the Seven Atlantean Races. The greater part of the Lemurians were animal-like and the forms inhabited by them have degenerated into the anthropoids of the present day.
The student is requested to note carefully that it was the forms which degenerated. There is a very important distinction to be kept in mind between the bodies (or forms) of a race, and the Egos (or life) which is reborn in those race-bodies.
The Atlantean Epoch
Volcanic cataclysms destroyed the greater part of the Lemurian continent and in its stead rose the Atlantean continent, where the Atlantic Ocean now is.
Material scientists, impelled by the story of Plato to undertake researched regarding Atlantis, have demonstrated that there is ample foundation for the story that such a continent did exist. Esoteric scientists know that it existed and they also know that the conditions there were such as shall now be described.
Ancient Atlantis differed from our present world in many ways, but the greatest difference was in the constitution of the atmosphere and the water of that Epoch.
From the southern part of the planet came the hot, fiery breath of the volcanoes which were still abundantly active. From the north swept down the icy blasts of the Polar region. The continent of Atlantis was the meeting place of those two currents, consequently its atmosphere was always filled with a thick and murky fog. The water was not so dense as now, but contained a greater proportion of air. Much water was also held in suspension in the heavy, foggy Atlantean atmosphere.
Through this atmosphere the Sun never clearly shone. It appeared to be surrounded by an aura of light-mist, as do street-lamps when seen through a dense fog. It was then possible to see only a few feet in any direction and the outlines of all objects not close at hand appeared dim, hazy and uncertain. Man was guided more by internal perception than by external vision.
Not only the country, but also the man of that time was very different from anything existent on earth at the present time. He had a head, but scarcely any forehead; his brain had no frontal development; the head sloped almost abruptly back from a point just above the eyes. As compared with our present humanity; he was a giant; his arms and legs were much longer, in proportion to this body, than ours. Instead of walking, he progressed by a series of flying leaps, not unlike those of the kangaroo. He had small blinking eyes and his hair was round in section.
The higher vehicles of the early Atlanteans were not drawn into a concentric position in relation to the dense body, as are ours. The spirit was not quite an indwelling spirit; it was partially outside, therefore could not control its vehicles with as great facility as though it dwelt entirely inside. The head of the vital body was outside of and held a position far above the physical head. There is a point between the eyebrows and about half an inch below the surface of the skin, which has a corresponding point in the vital body. This point is not the pituitary body, which lies much deeper in the head of the dense body. It might be called "the root of the nose." When these two points in the dense and the vital bodies come into correspondence, as they do in man today, the trained clairvoyant sees then as a black spot, or rather as a vacant space, like the invisible core of a gas flame. This is the seat of the indwelling spirit in the man—the Holy of Holies in the temple of the human body, barred to all but that indwelling human Ego whose home it is. The trained clairvoyant can see with more or less distinctness, according to his capacity and training, all the different bodies which form the aura of man. This spot alone is hidden from him. This is the "Isis" whose veil none may lift. Not even the highest evolved being on earth is capable of unveiling the Ego of the humblest and least developed creature. That, and that alone upon earth, is so sacred that it is absolutely safe from intrusion.
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These two points just spoken of—the one in the dense body and its counterpart in the vital body—were far apart in the men of the early Atlanteans days, as they are in the animals of our day. The head of the horse's vital body is far outside the head of its dense body. The two points are closer together in the dog than in any other animal except, perhaps, the elephant. When they come into correspondence we have an animal prodigy, able to count, spell, etc.
On account of the distance between these two points, the Atlantean's power of perception or vision was much keener in the inner Worlds than in the dense Physical World, obscured by its atmosphere of thick, heavy fog. In the fullness of time, however, the atmosphere slowly became clearer; at the same time, the point spoken of in the vital body came closer and closer to the corresponding point in the dense body. As the two approached each other, man gradually lost touch with the inner Worlds. They became dimmer as the dense Physical World became clearer in outline. Finally, in the last third of the Atlantean Epoch, the point in the vital body was united to the corresponding point in the dense body. Not until then did man become fully awake in the dense Physical World; but at the same time that full sight and perception in the Physical World were gained, the capability of perceiving the inner Worlds were gradually lost to most of the people.
In an earlier time the Atlantean did not clearly perceive the outline of an object or a person, but he saw the soul and at once knew its attributes, whether they were beneficial to him or otherwise. He knew whether the man or animal he was regarding was kindly or inimically disposed toward him. He was accurately taught by spiritual perception how to deal with others and how to escape harm. Therefore when the Spiritual World gradually faded from his consciousness, great was his sorrow at the loss.
The Rmoahals were the first of the Atlantean Races. They had but little memory and that little was chiefly connected with sensation. They remembered colors and tomes, and thus to some extend they evolved Feeling. The Lemurian had entirely lacked Feeling, in the finer signification of the word. He had the sense of touch, could feel the physical sensations of pain, ease and comfort, but not the mental and spiritual ones of joy, sorrow, sympathy and antipathy.
With memory came to the Atlanteans the rudiments of a language. They evolved words and no longer made use of mere sounds, as did the Lemurians. The Rmoahals began to give names to things. They were yet a spiritual race and, their soul-powers being like the forces of nature, they not only named the objects around them, but in their words was power over the things they named. Like the last of the Lemurians, their Feelings as spirits inspired them, and no harm was ever done to one another. To them the language was holy, as the highest direct expression of the spirit. The power was never abused or degraded by gossip or small talk. By the use of definite language the soul in this race first became able to contact the soul of things in the outside world.
The Tlavatlis were the second Atlantean Race. Already they began to feel their worth as separate human beings. They became ambitious, they demanded that their works be remembered. Memory became a factor in the life of the community. The remembrance of the deeds done by certain ones would cause a group of people to choose as their leader one who had done great deeds. This was the germ of Royalty.
This remembrance of the meritorious deeds of great men was carried even beyond the time when such leaders died. Mankind began to honor the memory of ancestors and to worship them and others who had shown great merit. That was the beginning of a form of worship which is practiced to this day by some Asiatics.
The Toltecs were the third Atlantean Race. They carried still further the ideas of their predecessors, inaugurating Monarchy and Hereditary Succession. The Toltecs originated the custom of honoring men for the deeds done by their ancestors, but there was then a very good reason for so doing. Because of the peculiar training at that time, the father had the power to bestow his qualities upon his son in a way impossible to mankind at the present time.
The education consisted of calling up before the soul of the child pictures of the different phases of life. The consciousness of the early Atlantean was, as yet, principally an internal picture-consciousness. The power of the educator to call up these pictures before the soul of the child was the determining factor upon which depended the soul qualities that would be possessed by the grown man. The instinct and not the reason was appealed to and aroused and by this method of education the son, in the great majority of cases, readily absorbed the qualities of the father. It is thus evident that there was at that time good reason for bestowing honor upon the descendants of great men, because the son almost always inherited most of his father's good qualities. Unfortunately, that is not the case in our time, although we still follow the same practices of honoring the sons of great men; but we have no reason whatever for doing so.
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Among the Toltecs, experience came to be highly valued. The man who had gained the most varied experience was the most honored and sought. Memory was in them so great and accurate that our present memory is nothing in comparison. In an emergency, a Toltec of wide practical experience would be very likely to remember similar cases in the past, and suggest what action should be taken. Thus be became a valuable adviser to the community when a situation developed which none of the members had previously encountered and they were unable to think or reason from analogy as to how to deal promptly with the emergency. When such an individual was not available, they were compelled to experiment in order to find what was best to do.
In the middle third of Atlantis we find the beginning of separate nations. Groups of people who discovered in one another similar tastes and habits would leave their old homes and found a new colony. They remembered old customs and followed them in their new homes as far as they suited, forming new ones to meet their own particular ideas and necessities.
The Leaders of mankind initiated great Kings at that time to rule the people, over whom they were given great power. The masses honored these kings with all the reverence due to those who were thus truly Kings "by the grace of God." This happy state, however, had in it the germ of disintegration, for in time the Kings become intoxicated with power. They forgot that it had been put into their hands by the grace of God, as a sacred trust; that they were made Kings for the purpose of dealing justly by and helping the people. They began to use their power corruptly, for selfish ends and personal aggrandizement instead of for the common good, arrogating themselves privileges and authorities never intended for them. Ambition and selfishness ruled then and they abused their high, divinely derived powers, for purposes of oppression and revenge. This was true, not only of the Kings, but also of the nobles and the higher classes, and when one considers the power possessed by them over their fellow beings of the less developed classes, it is easy to understand that its misuse would bring about terrible conditions.
The Original Turanians were the fourth Atlantean Race. They were especially vile in their abominable selfishness. They erected temples where the Kings were worshiped as gods, and caused the extreme oppression of the helpless lower classes. Black magic of the worst and most nauseating kind flourished and all their efforts were directed towards the gratification of vanity and external display.
The Original Semites were the fifth and most important of the seven Atlantean Races, because in them we find the first germ of the corrective quality of Thought. Therefore the Original Semitic Race become the "seed race" for the seven races of the present Fifth Epoch.
In the Polarian Epoch man acquired a dense body as an instrument of action. In the Hyperborean Epoch the vital body was added to give power of motion necessary to action. In the Lemurian Epoch the desire body furnished incentive to action.
The mind was given to man in the Atlantean Epoch to give purpose to action, but as the Ego was exceedingly weak and the desire nature strong, the nascent mind coalesced with the desire body, the faculty of Cunning resulted and was the cause of all the wickedness of the middle third of the Atlantean Epoch.
In the Fifth Epoch Thought and Reason were to be evolved by the work of the Ego in the mind to conduct Desire into channel leading to the attainment of spiritual perfection, which is the Goal of Evolution. This faculty of Thought and of forming Ideas was gained by man at the expense of loss of control over the vital forces—i.e., power over Nature.
With Thought and Mind man can at present exercise power over the chemicals and minerals only, for his mind is now in the first of mineral stage of its evolution, as was his dense body in the Saturn Period. He can exercise no power over plant or animal life. Wood and various vegetable substances, together with different parts of the animals, are used by man in his industries. These substances are all in the final analysis chemical matter ensouled by mineral life, of which the bodies in all the kingdoms are composed, as previously explained. Over all these varieties of chemical mineral combinations man at his present stage may have dominion, but until he has reached the Jupiter Period, that dominion will not be extended so that he can work with life. In that Period, however, he will have the power to work with plant life as the Angels do at present in the Earth Period.
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Material scientist have labored for many years in an endeavor to "create" life, but they will not succeed until they have learned that they must approach the laboratory table with the deepest reverence, as they would draw near to the alter in a Temple—with purity of heart and with holy hands, devoid of greed and selfish ambition.
Such is the wise decision of the Elder Brothers, who guard this and all the deep secrets of Nature until man shall be fit to use them for the uplifting of the race—for the glory of God and not for personal profit or self-aggrandizement.
It was, however, this very loss of power over the vital forces which the Atlanteans suffered that made it possible for man to evolve further. After that, no matter how great his selfishness became, it could not prove absolutely destructive of himself and of Nature, as would have been the case had the growing selfishness been accompanied by the great power possessed by man in his innocent former state. Thought that works only in man is powerless to command Nature and can never endanger humanity, as would be possible were Nature's forces under man's control.
The Original Semites regulated their desires to some extent by the mind, and instead of mere desires, came cunning and craftiness—the means by which those people sought to attain their selfish ends. Though they were a very turbulent people, they learned to curb their passions to a great extend and accomplish their purposes by the use of cunning, as being more subtle and potent than mere brute strength. They were the first to discover that "brain" is superior to "brawn."
During the existence of this Race, the atmosphere of Atlantis commenced to clear definitely, and the previously mentioned point in the vital body came into correspondence with its companion point in the dense body. The combination of events gave man the ability to see objects clearly with sharp, well-defined contours; but it also resulted in loss of sight pertaining to the inner Worlds.
Thus we see, and it may be well to definitely state it as a law: No progress is ever made that is not gained at the cost of some previously possessed faculty, which is later regained in a higher form.
Man built the brain at the expense of the temporary loss of the power to bring forth offspring from himself alone. In order to get the instrument wherewith to guide his dense body, be became subject to all the difficulty, sorrow and pain which is involved in the co-operation necessary to the perpetuation of the race; he obtained his reasoning power at the cost of the temporary loss of his spiritual insight.
While reason benefited him in many ways, it shut from his vision the soul of things which had previously spoken to him, and the gaining of the intellect which is now man's most precious possession was at first but sadly contemplated by the Atlantean, who mourned the loss of spiritual sight and power which marked its acquisition.
The exchange of spiritual powers for physical faculties was necessary, however, in order that man might be able to function, independent of outside guidance, in the Physical World which he must conquer. In time his higher powers will be regained when, by means of his experiences in his journey through the denser Physical World, he has learned to use them properly. When he possessed them, he had no knowledge of their proper use, and they were too precious and too dangerous to be used as toys, with which to experiment.
Under the guidance of a great Entity, the Original Semitic Race was led eastward from the continent of Atlantis, over Europe, to the great waste in Central Asia which is known as the Gobi Desert. There it prepared them to be the seed of the seven Races of the Fifth Epoch, imbuing them potentially with the qualities to be evolved by their descendants.
During all the previous ages—from the commencement of the Saturn Period, through the Sun and Moon Periods, and in the three and one-half Revolutions of the Earth Period (the Polarian, Hyperborean, Lemurian, and earlier part of the Atlantean Epochs)—man had been led and guided by higher Beings, without the slightest choice. In those days he was unable to guide himself, not yet having evolved a mind of his own; but at last the time had come when it was necessary for his further development that he should begin to guide himself. He must learn independence and assume responsibility for his own actions. Hitherto he had been compelled to obey the commands of his Ruler; now his thoughts were to be turned from the visible Leaders, the Lords from Venus, whom he worshiped as messengers from the gods—to the idea of the true God, the invisible Creator of the System. Man was to learn to worship and obey the commands of a God he could not see.
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Their Leader therefore called the people together and delivered a soul-stirring oration, which might be thus expressed:
Hitherto, you have seen Those who led you, but there are Leaders of varying grades of splendor, higher than They, Whom you have not seen, Who guided your every tottering step in the evolution of consciousness.
Exalted above all these glorious Beings stands the invisible God Who has created the heaven, and the earth upon which you dwell. He has willed to give you dominion over all this land, that you may be fruitful and multiply in it.
This invisible God only must you worship, but you must worship Him in Spirit and in Truth, and not make any graven image of Him, nor use any likeness to picture Him to yourselves, because He is everywhere present, and is beyond any comparison or similitude.
If you follow His precepts, He will bless you abundantly in all good. If you stray from His ways, evil will follow. The choice is yours. You are free; but you must endure the consequences of your own actions.
The education of man proceeds by four great steps. First, he is worked upon from without unconsciously. Then he is placed under the Rulership of Divine Messengers and Kings whom he sees, and whose commands he must obey. Next he is taught to revere the commands of a God whom he does not see. Finally, he learns to rise above the commands; to become a law unto himself; and, by conquering himself of his own free will, to live in harmony with the Order of Nature, which is the Law of God.
Fourfold also are the steps by which man climbs upward to God.
First, through fear, he worships the God whom he begins to sense, sacrificing to propitiate Him, as do the fetish-worshipers.
Next, he learns to look to God as the giver of all things, and hopes to receive from Him material benefits here and now. He sacrifices through avarice, expecting that the Lord will repay a hundredfold, or to escape swift punishment by plague, war, etc.
Next, he is taught to worship God by prayer and the living of a good life; and that he must cultivate faith in a Heaven where he will be rewarded in the future; and to abstain from evil that he may escape a future punishment in Hell.
At last he comes to a point where he can do right without any thought of reward, bribe, or punishment, but simply because "it is right to do right." He loves right for its own sake and seeks to govern his conduct thereby, regardless of present benefit or injury, or of painful results at some future time.
The Original Semites had reached the second of these steps. They were taught to worship an invisible God and to expect to be rewarded by material benefits, or punished by painful afflictions.
Popular Christianity is at the third step. Esoteric Christians, and the pupils of all esoteric schools are trying to reach the highest step, which will be generally achieved in the Sixth Epoch, the new Galilee, when the unifying Christian religion will open the hearts of men, as their understanding is being opened now.
The Akkadians were the sixth and the Mongolians the seventh of the Atlantean Races. They evolved the faculty of thought still further, but followed lines of reasoning which deviated more and more from the main trend of the developing life. Progress constantly requires new methods and adaptability, keeping ideas in a fluid state.
As the heavy fogs of Atlantis condensed more and more, the increased quantity of water gradually inundated that continent, destroying the greater part of the population and the evidences of their civilization. Great numbers were driven from the doomed continent by the floods, and wandered across Europe.
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The Fifth Epoch
Central Asia was the cradle of the Fifth Epoch Races, who descended from the Original Semites. Thence have the different Races gone out. It is unnecessary to describe them here, as historical researches have sufficiently revealed their main features.
In the present Fifth Epoch, man came to know the use of fire and other forces, the divine origin of which was purposely withheld from him, that he might be free to use them for higher purposes or his own development. Therefore we have in this present Epoch two classes: One looks upon this Earth and upon man as being of divine origin; the other sees all things from a purely utilitarian viewpoint.
The most advanced among humanity at the beginning of the Fifth Epoch were given the higher Initiations, that they might take the place of the messengers of God, i.e. the Lords of Venus. Such human Initiates were from this time forth the only mediators between God and man. Even they did not appear publicly nor show any signs of wonders that they were Leaders and Teachers. Man was left entirely free to seek them or not, as he desired.
At the end of our present Epoch the highest Initiate will appear publicly, when a sufficient number of ordinary humanity desire, and will voluntarily subject themselves to such a Leader. They will thus form the nucleus for the last Race, which will appear at the beginning of the Sixth Epoch. After that time races and nations will cease to exist. Humanity will form one spiritual Fellowship as before the end of the Lemurian Epoch.
From the mixture of the different nations now taking place in the United States will come the "Seed" for the last Race, in the beginning of the Sixth Epoch.
Two more Races will be evolved in our present Epoch, one of them being the Slav. When, in the course of a few hundred years, the Sun, because of the precession of the equinoxes, shall have entered the sign Aquarius, the Russian people and the Slav Races in general will reach a degree of spiritual development which will advance them far beyond their present condition. Music will be the chief factor in bringing this about, for on the wings of music the soul which is attuned may fly to the very Throne of God, where the mere intellect cannot reach. Development attained in that manner, however, is not permanent, because it is one-sided, therefore not in harmony with the law of evolution, which demands that development, to be permanent, must be evenly balanced—in other words, that spirituality shall evolve through, or at least equally with, intellect. For this reason the Slavic civilization will be short-lived, but it will be great and joyful while it lasts, for it is being born of deep sorrow and untold suffering, and the law of Compensation will bring the opposite in due time.
From the Slavs will descend a people which will form the last of the seven Races of the Fifth Epoch, and from the people of the United States will descend the last of all the Races in this scheme of evolution, which will run its course in the beginning of the Sixth Epoch.
The Sixteen Paths to Destruction
The sixteen Races are called the "Sixteen paths to destruction" because there is always, in each Race, a danger that the soul may become too much attached to the Race; that it may become so enmeshed in Race characteristics it cannot rise above the Race idea, and will therefore fail to advance.
In Periods, Revolutions, and Epochs where there are no Races, there is much more time, and the likelihood of becoming fossilized is not so great, nor so frequent. But the sixteen Races are born and die in such a relatively short time there is grave danger that the one who gets too much attached to conditions may be left behind.
Christ is the great unifying Leader of the Sixth Epoch, and He enunciated this law when He uttered those little-understood words: "If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
"And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me cannot be my disciple.
". . . whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple."
Not that we are to leave, nor underestimate family ties, but that we are to rise above them. Father and mother are "bodies"; all relations are part of the Race—which belongs to Form. The souls must recognize that they are not Bodies, nor Races, but Egos striving for perfection. If a man forgets this, and identifies himself with his Race—clinging to it with fanatic patriotism—he is likely to become enmeshed in and sink with it when his compeers have passed to greater heights on the Path of Attainment.
Contemporary Mystic Christianity
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