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Philosophic Encyclopedia
The Rosicrucian Philosophy in Questions and Answers
Questions Dealing With Health and Healing
Procedure With So-Called Incurable Diseases

".... whether any disease be cured or not, if the patient can be taught what laws have been transgressed and how, if he can be led to see what is the spiritual cause of the disease, and learn to walk in the way of virtue according to the laws of God, then in the future there will be no disease for him. It is that which we are laboring for, that we may hasten the day of Liberation, and bring all mankind toward the full realization of health."

Question: Do you think it advisable to ask for treatment in such cases of consumption, cancer, sclerosis and the like, or should we accept these diseases as incurable, the result of some cause in the past, and wait for a more efficient body in another life?

Answer: Cancer and consumption are often seemingly incurable, yet there is always a possibility that they may yield, and they certainly will yield if the force directed against them is sufficient. Like all other physical manifestations they are the result of a spiritual cause, and if we can get at that, offset it with something of an opposite nature, there is a chance of recovery; whereas the attitude of resignation and non-assistance will certainly never bring the patient out of his condition. Life in a salubrious climate, a strong desire for health, a hope that neither knows nor permits of discouragement, and a simple nutritious diet will cure even the worst case of consumption.

As for cancer, no one can ever tell when the debt of destiny which has caused the trouble has been paid. There are many cases on record where cancer has been cured; that is to say, in its milder forms. But even in an advanced stage there is no reason for giving up hope as long as there is life. In the case of sclerosis there are several methods of curing it, and the patient may become as well as ever particularly if he can be brought to recognize the breach of the laws of nature which caused the disease in his particular case.

It is to this end that we should always labor, for whether any disease be cured or not, if the patient can be taught what laws have been transgressed and how, if he can be led to see what is the spiritual cause of the disease, and learn to walk in the way of virtue according to the laws of God, then in the future there will be no disease for him. It is that which we are laboring for, that we may hasten the day of Liberation, and bring all mankind toward the full realization of health.

Morphine and the Post-Mortem Consciousness

Question: What is the effect of morphine on those who are addicted to its use? When a person who has been very ill for a long time, and who, because of the severe suffering, has been kept unconscious by large doses of morphine for many days, passes from earth life in that condition, does the released spirit become conscious when it leaves the body? What is its condition compared to that of one who dies suddenly and in full possession of all faculties?

Answer: The use of morphine and other narcotics in very small doses such as are generally taken by the ordinary drug addict has a deadening effect upon the nerves, so that the Spirit feels less sensitive in the body and more like the freed Spirit which left the physical vehicle. Under such conditions the mental faculties are better, and the person feels such an ease of mind and body that it is like heaven itself until the reaction sets in; then he begins to suffer the tortures of hell, and consequently takes more in order to restore his previous sense of well-being.

When morphine is given in large doses, it produces a condition similar to that of a person who passes out while under an anesthetic. The writer has met a number of the latter, but has never seen one who passed out under the action of morphine; therefore he cannot give the direct information asked for. But these people who died under an anesthetic were just as conscious as the ordinary human being after the silver cord has been severed. They went through their life panorama in about the same way as the person who passes out normally, and had no different experiences. Therefore we should say that one who passes out under morphine probably has no extra-unpleasant experience on account of the morphine given him before his transition; and the first feeling would be one of great relief that he had escaped from the suffering incident to severe illness preceding death of the physical body. This feeling of relief is common to all who have suffered, no matter whether consciously or unconsciously. They are all exceedingly grateful that this is past, and can scarcely realize that there is no sickness in the land of the living dead to which they go after leaving this world.

Idiocy and Insanity

Question: Are doctors justified in allowing a child to die that is bound to be an idiot and physically helpless when an operation would enable it to live. Does an idiot or an insane person gain any worth-while experience during life? Is the Ego within aware of the physical disability of the mind and body during such a life, and does it learn thereby? Can insanity be classed among the hereditary diseases?

Answer: Suppose a child met with an accident while playing, a blow on the head, and hence became abnormal, or perhaps was put into a state of coma; no one would hesitate for a moment to have the operation of trepanning performed so that by taking the pressure off the skull from the brain the child might be restored to its normal state of consciousness. They why should a weak-minded child not receive the same care, and have everything done for it that is possible? It would be considered criminal to allow a normal child to die for lack of care, and it is just as indefensible in the case of a child born to be an idiot, for when the Ego has gone through the womb in order to gain the experiences of this physical life, we are in duty bound to support its efforts in every possible manner.

The Ego does gain experience by a life of insanity, for the Ego itself is never insane. It is improper connection between its various vehicles, the mind, desire body, vital body, and dense body, which makes insanity. When the connection between the brain centers and the vital body is imperfect, we have what is called the idiot, often melancholy but generally perfectly harmless. When the faulty connection is between the vital body and the desire body, the conditions are somewhat similar, but include the class whose muscular control is defective, as in epilepsy., St Vitus dance, etc. When the connection is broken or faulty between the desire body and the mind, we have a raving maniac who is violent and dangerous. And when the connection is defective between the Ego and the mind, we have what we might call a soulless man, the most dangerous of all, gifted with a cunning that is usually at some unexpected time put to a most diabolical use.

If we consider the body, or the different bodies, as musical instruments upon which the Ego is playing, then when every connection is perfect the Ego can bring out more or less beautiful symphony of life according to its state in evolution. But when the connections are faulty or broken the Ego is like a musician forced to exercise his talent with an instrument lacking a number of strings, and he is therefore unable to bring out anything but discord. To the musician it would be torture to be forced to play on such a defective instrument; and it is the same with the Ego which is immured in a body cut off from its normal control. For reasons to be sought in past lives it is forced to stay with a body that it cannot control, and it suffers more or less acutely according to its stage in evolution; thus, however, it is learning a certain lesson in the school of life which is required to make it perfect. It is a sad condition, but though a lifetime appears to be very long, it is but a fleeting moment in the unending life of the Spirit; and we may console ourselves with the knowledge that when such an Ego comes back to earth it will have a normal body, provided of course that the lesson has been learned.

With respect to the last part of the question as to whether insanity is hereditary, we may answer in the affirmative or the negative according to which phase of the problem we are considering. From the spiritual point of view it is not hereditary for, as already stated, insanity is not a defect in the Ego. Because of a twist in its character it cannot build a normal body, hence by association it is drawn to a family that is similarly afflicted. This is on the very same principle that people of like character always seek one another's company; as the old saying goes, "birds of a feather flock together." Musicians congregate in music halls, at concerts, and similar places. They also seek birth in families of musicians because there the instruments needed, long slender fingers and an ear in which the semicircular canals are properly placed, can be obtained, which will give them the ability to express music. Sporting men and gamblers flock together at race tracks and in gambling dens. Thieves have their resorts, and so on. Similarly, those with a certain defect in their character are attracted to families which have the same defect. Hence if we view the problem of insanity from the form side, it may be said that it is hereditary.

Scientists who view the matter entirely from the form side are of the opinion that by limiting the reproduction of defectives they may stamp out disease. But just as the soft juices of the snail's body are gradually set out and crystallized into the hard and flinty shell it carries upon its back, so it is also the acts of the Ego which gradually crystallize themselves into a body wherein the Spirit must dwell until they are worked out. Relief will never be obtained by working with and upon the physical body alone, any more than operating upon the shell would cure a sick snail. Emerson said truly that "a sick man is a scoundrel who has been found out, breaking the laws of nature." The insane are in that category, and if we wish to cure them we must use spiritual means of education. All other methods are simply palliative; they do not reach the source of the disease.

Effects of Amputation

Question: When an arm or a limb is amputated does that exist independently in the Desire World after the amputation? And after death does a person appear minus a hand or foot in the Desire World? I have known people to suffer pain in a limb long after amputation, even years. How is this accounted for?

Answer: When an arm, limb, or any organ has been removed from the physical body by any means of a surgical operation, only the dense part of the organ permeated by the planetary ether is taken away. The four ethers which constitute the vital body of the man or woman thus operated upon remain; but there is a certain magnetic connection between the part decaying in the grave and the etheric counterpart which remains with the person.

Therefore, he or she feels the pain and suffering in the part removed for some time after an operation, until decay has taken place, and the etheric counterpart has disintegrated.

You will find some interesting cases demonstrating this point and some further teaching on this matter in the Cosmo. When a person who is injured passes into the invisible realm, he thinks with the same mind, pictures himself there as he was in this world. Consequently a scar on the forehead or the loss of an arm or limb is reproduced by his thought in the matter of the Desire World and he appears there disfigured as he was here.

In the World War this was very noticeable, for all the soldiers who passed out with wounds which they could see and which they knew how to determine the effect of, reproduced these wounds in their desire bodies. They felt pain similar to what they would have felt if they had still been in the physical body, because they fancied that there must be pain connected with it. However, they were very quickly assisted by one another and by those who had been helped by the Elder Brothers to see the matter right: that there was no actual pain. As soon as they were convinced that their wounds were but illusions and taught that they could shape their bodies in the normal and health state, they could quickly remedy the condition.

Destroying Sick Vibrations

Question: The following is sent in by a doctor of osteopathy: At the time of treatment can one destroy sick vibrations so that they will not return after treatment?

Answer: If we read between the lines of this question we shall sense two very common difficulties in the practice of Osteopathy and kindred methods of treatment by the laying on of hands. In this process there are two distinct operations. One is taking away from the patient something that is poisonous and injurious, provocative of disease; and there is also a giving out of vital force by the doctor himself or herself. Everybody who has done any work of this kind knows this because it has been felt and is felt by everybody who is successful. Now, unless the doctor or healer is bubbling over with radiant health, two things are liable to happen: either the human miasma taken away from the patient may so overwhelm him or her that, to use a common expression, "he takes on the condition" of the patient, or he may give too much of his own vital force, and thus become entirely depleted. Both of these conditions may combine, and then there comes a day when the physician or healer finds himself or herself run down and forced to rest up.

Magnetic healers who are frankly unscientific, often escape the first-mentioned condition by "throwing off the magnetism," as they say, but all are liable to be run down. That is something that nobody can escape, save one who can see the etheric effluvia he takes and the vital fluid he gives. Most people are vampires when they are sick, and the stronger and more robust they are ordinarily, the worst they are usually when sickness has put them in bed. I have never been so sick as I was after treating a giant who was suffering from intense inflammation of the kidneys and had been in bed from this cause for more than two weeks. It was dreadful to see his agony, and I gave myself wholly, with the result that I was prostrated. The patient, however, was up the next morning and as well as ever. He had my vitality, I had his disease, or at least the effluvia from it, and it took me three days to get rid of it. That was, of course, before I was able to see spiritually.

Since then I have gained considerable knowledge in this department, and the questioner will find the following hint of value in keeping away these undesirable conditions: First, fix your thought firmly in such a manner that you will not allow this miasmatic effluvia which leaves the patient's body to enter your body farther than the elbow; second, when you are giving treatment leave the patient once in a while and wash your hands in running water if possible; but at any rate wash in water, and change the water as frequently as possible. The water has a twofold effect. In the first place, the effluvia leaving the patient's body has an affinity for water. In the second place, the moisture which stays upon your hands enables you to get the miasma from the patient in a larger measure than you otherwise would.

This is on the very same principle that if you take the electrodes of an electrical battery and put them into water, you will find the effect of the electricity is many times intensified if you try to touch the water.

So also with yourself: you are the electric battery in the case, and your hands being moistened, the miasma will be drawn to yourself in a much greater measure than otherwise. If conditions are such that you cannot get water you may try to throw off the magnetism, but then it is necessary to be careful, because when the magnetism is thrown away from you it is attracted to the earth because it is subject to gravity. To the spiritual vision it is a dark or rather a black, jelly-like fluid. It lies shimmering and shivering on the floor. If now the patient gets up relieved from the couch where the treatment has been given, and goes over the place where this magnetism has been thrown away, then the miasma will re-enter the body and he or she will be in a worse condition that before you started the treatment. Therefore, it is the best policy to throw such miasma out of the window, or better still, put it into a fireplace and then set fire to it.

From the foregoing, it is evident that this laying on of hands is something that should not be done indiscriminately by any one who has not been trained in one of the many properly equipped schools of Osteopathy, Chiropractic, etc. In the School of the Rosicrucians, Probationers who live worthy lives are trained under the special guidance of the Elder Brothers.

Destroying Disease Products

Question: At the time of treating a patient, can one destroy the vibrations of disease so that once they have been removed from the patient they do not return after the treatment is over?

Answer: We suppose you refer to magnetic treatment for disease, and we may say that this method of healing consists wholly in removing vibrations of disease by absorption into the body of the healer, who must have sufficient vitality to throw them off himself or he will become ill in turn. This has been explained before in our literature, but perhaps taking the subject up from another angle may not prove uninteresting or uninstructive.

When one looks with the spiritual sight at a person who is diseased, the patient's vital body looks thin and emaciated in proportion to the ravages made by the disease. There are no radiating lines from it as when the body is in health, but a sickly emanation which curls up in eddies and spirals that hang close to the dense body. Instead of being pinkish-purple it is usually a dull gray in most places, and the part that is particularly diseased is enveloped in something which resembles a mass of black jelly. That is what we might call the vibrations of disease, and at the time when the person receives a magnetic healing treatment it is this black poisonous mass which is absorbed into the hands of the healer. When he or she throws it off by a vigorous movement of the arms it sinks to the floor. Then if the patient happens to step close to that place where it lies he or she will reabsorb it. Therefore, it has always been the writer's practice to either throw these emanations out of the window or into a fire place where they may be burned. Then they can do no harm.

But while we are upon this subject it may be well to bring home another phase of this matter and the method of healing. So long as an organ is diseased it generates this poison stuff which hangs about it and prevents the currents of the vital body from coursing through it. What a magnetic healer does is simply to cleanse this organ for the time being and thus he opens the way for the influx of life-giving and health-promoting currents. The relief is usually only temporary, for the weak and diseased organ continues to generate the poison "miasma," as we call it, so that shortly it requires another cleansing by the magnetic healer. This continues until the vital currents finally become sufficiently strong to over-master and throw off the poison stuff and cleanse the organ themselves. Then health returns.

The osteopathic physician goes at the matter from the opposite angle by manipulation of the nerves for the vital currents. This strengthens these currents and they begin to scatter the miasma in the diseased part of the body. However, it usually requires a number of treatments from him also before health is restored, because the poison miasma blocks up the nerves again shortly after he has ceased manipulations. Therefore, it would seem to the writer, though he has never tried it, that a combination of the two methods: opening up the nerve currents and strengthening them by means of osteopathic treatments, at the same time removing the poison miasma by magnetic healing, being careful either to burn or otherwise dispose of the effluvia, ought to facilitate the treatment of disease wonderfully.

Healing the Sick

Question: How does an Initiate heal the sick? By invocation of a higher power or concentration of his own? Is there any difference between the first and the last method? If so, what is it?

Answer: As the question stands it is difficult to answer. While we know certain methods of healing, we also believe that the choice is a matter of temperament, and the different methods of healing are probably used at different times by all Initiates as the occasion demands. We know that on certain occasions the Christ addressed Himself to the Father when performing a cure. At other times when He was in a crowd and someone touched Him, He observed that the virtue had gone out from Him and doubtless healed the one who had drawn the force from Him. All who have followed in His steps have no doubt varied their methods to suit the occasion. But in the final analysis the healing power is the same, for it emanates from our Father in heaven who is the Great Physician, and each Initiate or healer absorbs as much of His divine power as he is capable of containing, giving it out as required to each suffering one that comes before Him.

If you look up the article "How We heal the Sick" in the Healing Department of "Rays from the Rose Cross" for September, 1915, you will find there a description of our method which will throw considerable light upon the subject. There is also in the same magazine an article by Stuart Leech, M.D., showing how he saved himself the necessity of performing a surgical operation by visiting the patient at night when he was out of his body, materializing hands within the body of the patient, and straightening out the trouble, so that the next morning the patient was cured beyond the necessity of having the knife applied. This will probably make it clear that there is considerable scope and latitude to the Initiate and Invisible Helper in dealing with the morbid conditions of the body. As said before, the healing balm comes from our Father in heaven, and no matter who does the work or what method he uses to bring health to the ailing, the glory and honor belong to God alone.

Removing Diseased Organs

Question: When we are afflicted in this life and have a surgical operation performed and the diseased organ removed, does that heal us permanently or do we return in a future body with a similar ailment?

Answer: Christ said: "As a man thinketh in his heart so is he," and this covers the matter thoroughly when taken in its widest significance. When we enter the invisible realms after death and during the post-mortem state undergo the purgatorial and First Heaven experiences, all our vehicles are gradually dissolved, and we enter the Second Heaven where we commence to create the environment of our new existence. When that task has been completed we enter the Third Heaven where only a very, very few have consciousness as yet. Hence, forgetfulness of all that has gone before wipes the slate clean and we take with us only the quintessence of our past experiences as faculties when we re-enter the Second Heaven on our way toward rebirth and mold the archetype of our coming physical body with the help of the Recording Angels and their agents.

To make the point clear let us remember that during childhood days we go through the most dreadful contortions in learning to write. The letters we form are grotesque in the extreme, but by and by in the course of time with persistent effort we acquire the faculty of writing a legible hand. Then as the years pass by we forget our difficulties in learning to write but the faculty remains with us. Similarly, the embodied Spirit forgets all that has gone before, but the faculty of doing certain things remains with it.

Therefore, it is has formed a body weak in a certain place in one life and has suffered the pain incident to that weakness and disease, even to the removal of an organ, we may be very sure that though the event will be forgotten in a coming existence the Spirit will remember the fact when it is molding the archetype and coming to rebirth. It will then endeavor to build a better organ so that it may save itself the pain which it endured in a previous life and thus, instead of perpetuating the diseased organ, it is very safe to say that an organ that was diseased in one life will be sound in the next. Gradually mankind is thus learning by past mistakes to build a better and sounder body.

To take another illustration, we may consider how an architect would act who had built a house and by living in it found certain discomforts. If he sold this house and built himself another, he would remember the discomforts he had in his previous dwelling and endeavor to build a house that would be free from those inconveniences. Then perhaps he would find other developments that were not to his taste in the new house and on selling that would build a third house that would be better than the two previous and so on. We may infer that the case is similar with the house of the Spirit which it builds anew in each life. Oliver Wendell Holmes put that so very beautifully in the last verse of his "Chambered Nautilus," which had built larger and larger chambers as it grew and finally had left the outgrown shell. He says:

"Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul,
As the swift seasons roll.
Leave thy low vaulted past!
Let each new temple, nobler than the last,
Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast,
Till thou at length art free,
Leaving thine outgrown shell by life's unresting sea."

Removing the Spleen

Question: There has been brought to my notice a case where a woman had been operated upon and the spleen removed. According to the Rosicrucian teachings the spleen is the entrance gate of the solar forces which vitalize the body, and in the etheric counterpart of that organ the solar energy is transmuted to a vital fluid of a pale rose color, which from thence spreads all over the nervous system. We also learn that the rays of the Sun are transmitted either directly or reflected by way of the planets, or by way of the Moon. The direct rays from the Sun give spiritual illumination, those received from the planets produce intelligence, morality, and soul growth. In a case like the above described, will the etheric counterpart continue to perform its work after the dense organ has been removed, or will it disintegrate as does the etheric counterpart of an arm or leg that has been amputated, and if so what is the effect upon the person so operated on?

Answer: You are right in your statement of the Rosicrucian Teachings, except where you say that the solar energy is transmuted in the spleen to a pale rose colored fluid. The spleen is the gate of the solar forces, but the transmutation you speak about takes place in the solar plexus, where the prismatic seed-atom of the vital body is located.

With respect to what takes place after the spleen has been removed, it will help us to recall that the physical body accommodates itself so far as possible to altered conditions. If a wound in a certain part of the body makes it impossible for the blood to flow in the normal channels, it finds another set of veins by which it may take its circuit. But an organ never atrophies so long as it can serve any useful purpose. It is similar with the vital body composed of the ethers. When an arm or a limb has been amputated, the etheric counterpart of that member is no longer required in the economy of the body, therefore it gradually wastes away. But in the case of an organ like the spleen where the etheric counterpart has an important functions as gateway for the solar energy, naturally no such disintegration will take place.

It should also be remembered that whenever disease manifests in the physical vehicle that part of the vital body has first become thin, attenuated, and diseased, and it was its failure to supply the necessary vital energy that caused the manifestation of physical symptoms of ill-health. Conversely, when health returns, the vital body is the first to pick up and this convalescence is then manifested in the dense body. Therefore, if the physical spleen is diseased, it is a foregone conclusion that the etheric counterpart is also in subnormal health, and the wisdom of removing the organ is doubtful. However, if it is done, the body will seek to accommodate itself to the new conditions and the etheric counterpart of the spleen with continue to function as before.

Invisible Helpers

Question: When one who has been working unconsciously as an Invisible Helper leaves the body at death, will he recognize those in the spirit world with whom he has been working at night, or will those experiences leave no record?

Answer: The experiences of an Invisible Helper who works unconsciously in the invisible worlds during the time when the body is asleep may be likened to a dream which he does not remember upon awakening. However, the experiences are nevertheless stored in the seed atom and will form part of the panorama of life, so that when he leaves the body at death he will see all that has happened to him, awake or asleep, during the time when he lived in the body. Thus his recollection of what has happened will not be quite the same as if he had gone through it consciously, but he will nevertheless obtain from the life-panorama a knowledge and an idea of what has been done. Thus, though he will not have the same feeling as if he had been going through the experience consciously, he will soon adjust himself to believe and understand that what seemed a dream is nevertheless a perfectly true experience.

Protection Against Vampirism

Question: I have always been weak and anemic, and I find that other people vampirize my strength. Must I stop helping people by concentrating for them, or can you give some safe method of protection? I know of several people who would be helped by your answer.

Answer: If you will study what is said in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception about the way thoughts are generated in the mind and then projected upon others to do their work, you will learn a great deal concerning the science of concentration and how to do the work you are trying to perform for humanity. Incidentally, you will probably realize that the thought forms you send out for the purpose of helping others take away only a small part of your own desire body which is immediately replaced by desire stuff of an even higher grade than that sent out, owing to the high rate of vibration always generated by unselfish effort. However, it takes nothing away from your vital body and it is upon the condition of this vehicles that your physical health depends.

Thus you are never vampirized by concentrating upon anyone else when you yourself are alone, but it is the contact with other people that is apt to hurt you if you are in a weakened condition. If you are at all sensitive you probably know who draws upon you, and while walking and visiting with such people it is best if possible to keep a few feet away from them. If you are sitting in a room with them and talking with them, cross your limbs at the ankles and fold your hands. Then you form a magnetic circuit on the floor or ground when your are in magnetic rapport with any person who happens to be near you.

These measures are, however, only precautions which you may use with advantage until you get yourself in hand. That should be your first consideration, for it is useless to apply palliative treatments to the effect while the cause is still there. According to the conditions we get from your letter you need iron and ether. If it is possible for you to get milk directly it has been milked from the cow that will be a wonderful help to you, for at that time the milk is surcharged with the healthy animal ether. However if you cannot get it that way there are other means.

Relative to their size, the plants have the strongest vital bodies composed of the two lower ethers, which have to do with the assimilation of physical nutriment. Therefore, green vegetables even though they have been in the market for some time are surcharged with ether. Lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, and strawberries are among the plants which abound in iron. If you will refrain from cooking, merely putting them in water an hour before meals to make them crisp, you will in a short time increase the ether in your body and the iron in your system. The you will not be anemic and in danger of vampirism.

Selfishness the Cause of All Sickness

Question: In Tannhauser you say sickness attends soul growth to a greater or less extent. I also see in Lecture No. 11, Spiritual Sight and Insight, that you say disease is a manifestation of ignorance, and that in proportion that the Christ is formed in us we attain to health. These two passages don't seem reconcilable to my mind.

Answer: They are nevertheless very much reconcilable. Until the Christ life illumines us from within we do not comprehend, neither do we follow, the laws of nature, and consequently we contract diseases by our ignorant contravention of these laws. As Emerson puts it, a man who is sick is a scoundrel in the act of being found out; he has broken the laws of nature. That is why it is necessary that the gospel of Christ should be preached. All of us should learn to love our God with our whole heart and our whole soul and our brother as ourselves, for all our trouble in the world, whether we recognize it or not, comes from the one great fact of our selfishness. If the alimentative function is deranged, what is the reason? Is it not that we have overtaxed our system because we have been angered and exhausted our nervous force by trying to get someone to serve our selfish ends, and we feel resentful because we have not succeeded? In every case selfishness is the prime cause of diseases, sorrows, and pains. Selfishness is the supreme besetting sin of ignorance.

Nature of White Blood Corpuscles

Question No. 50 You say in the Cosmo that the white blood corpuscles are not the policemen of the system. What then is their origin and mission?

Answer: To make this clear to the average reader it is first necessary to say that besides the dense body which is visible to all of us, there are finer vehicles which interpenetrate this organism and which are the springs to its activities. One is the vital body, composed of ether and concerned in building the dense body by the food which we take into the system. It controls all the vital functions, such as respiration, digestion, assimilation, etc., and works through the sympathetic nervous system. Another, still finer vehicle, is called the desire body. This is the vehicle of our emotions, feelings, and desires which expands the energies stored in the dense body by the vital processes through control of the cerebrospinal or voluntary nervous system. In its activities this desire body is constantly destroying and breaking down tissue built up by the vital body and it is the war between these two vehicles which causes what we call consciousness in the physical world. The etheric forces in the vital body act in such a manner that they convert as much of the food as possible into blood, and this is the highest expression of the vital body.

In the lower animals, from the birds on downward, which are entirely under the guidance of an invisible guardian called the Group Spirit, the blood is nucleated, but in the higher mammals which are upon the threshold of individualization, and particularly in man, who has become an individual, indwelling Spirit, there are no nuclei in the blood corpuscles. Even in the fetus, which is formed under the sole guidance of the mother during the first three weeks, and therefore has nucleated blood corpuscles in that period, they cease to be formed as soon as the Ego which is to live in the body enters. This happens about twenty-one days after conception, and by the time of the quickening the indwelling Ego in the fetus has destroyed all the nucleated corpuscles. From henceforth none are formed, for the Ego must be master of its vehicle. That is the case where there is a nucleus or center in the blood corpuscles which affords a foothold for another Spirit. It is easily demonstrated that the life is in the blood, for while we may sometimes with impunity amputate an arm or limb, we cannot deplete the body of blood without also killing it.

Thus the blood is the particular vehicle of the Ego, and as in the past aeons of development we have crystallized matter in order to form our dense body, so also it is destined that now we must etherealize our vehicles in order that we may lift ourselves and the world out of the realm of materiality and into the spiritual. Naturally, therefore, the Ego aims first to make the blood gaseous, and to the spiritual sight, this red unnucleated blood is not a fluid, but a gas, It is not argument against this assertion that the moment we prick our skin the blood comes out as a liquid. The moment we open up the try-cock of a steam boiler the gas also condenses into a liquid, but if we make a model steam engine of glass and look at the way steam works there we shall see only the piston move backward and forward, driven by an invisible agent, live steam. Similarly as the live steam direct from the boiler is invisible and gaseous, so also the live blood in the human body is a gas, and the higher the state of development of any given Ego, the more ethereal it is able to make the blood.

When by the vital processes, food has reached this highest alchemical state, the process of condensation begins and the blood-gas is formed into tissue in the various organs to replace what has been wasted or destroyed by the activities of the body. The spleen is the gateway of the vital body. There the solar force which abounds in the surrounding atmosphere enters in a constant stream, to aid us in the vital processes, and there also the war between the desire body and the vital body is waged most fiercely.

Thoughts of worry, fear, and anger interfere with the processes of evaporation in the spleen. A speck of plasm is the result, and this is at once seized upon by a thought elemental which forms a nucleus and embodies itself therein. Then it commences to live a life of destruction, coalescing with other waste products and decaying elements whenever formed, making the body a charnel house instead of the temple of an indwelling living Spirit. We may therefore say that every white corpuscle which has been taken by an outside entity is to the Ego a lost opportunity. The more of these lost opportunities there are in the body, the less is the body under control of the Ego. Therefore, we find them present in larger numbers in diseased people than in those possessing health. It may also be said that the person of a jovial good nature or one who is devoutly religious and has an absolute faith and trust in divine providence and love, will register many less lost opportunities, or white blood corpuscles, than those who are always worrying and fretting.

The Cause and Cure of Colds

Question: Will you kindly give us your view concerning the cause and cure of colds?

Answer: We live in an age of germs and serums. Every disease is supposed to have its micro-organism and an antidote is given either as a preventive or a curative. One may even be inoculated for a cold, and it is claimed that if the operation is successful one is henceforth immune. Perhaps some day all the different antidotes may be compounded into a elixir-vitae which will make us immune from the whole horde of dreaded germs! Seriously, what an anomaly this condition is. Man has conquered the whole world and stricken terror into the hearts of all the creatures which he can reach by the various devices he has made for their destruction. Even the largest of creatures fly before him in fear, but he himself is afraid of creatures so minute that he can see them only by the help of the most powerful microscope. These little microbes are so dreaded that some of the ablest men of the world spend their whole lives in efforts to restrain the ravages of the minute foe.

It is true that micro-organisms exist, but it is also true that they cannot obtain a foothold in any organism which is in a state of normal health. It is only when from other causes our bodies have become debilitated that disease germs are able to get a foothold at all and commence their destructive processes. Those who are in radiant health, and we use this phrase literally, may go without fear into any plague camp, even if there are more germs on a square inch of the patient's bodies than there are people in all the world. So long as the man is in radiant health they cannot affect him.

To make our meaning clear concerning this phrase, radiant health, we must reiterate the fact so often insisted upon, a fact which science is beginning to discover, that our bodies are interpenetrated by the ether in such volume that under most conditions it radiates from the body. One who is endowed with the spiritual sight sees within the dense physical body another vehicle resembling it exactly, organ for organ, and formed of ether. He sees also that through the spleen there is a continued influx of etheric life force which undergoes a chemical change in the solar plexus and is then circulated through the whole body as a pale rose-colored fluid with a slight purple tinge. This etheric fluid radiates from the whole periphery of the body through every pore of the skin, carrying with it an enormous amount of the poisonous gases which are generated by the food we take into our systems, selected usually because it pleases either the eyes or the palate, rather than for the nutritional value which it contains.

So long as this vital radiation of the etheric life-force is sufficiently strong it not only carries away the poisons from the body, but keeps deleterious organisms from entering, on the same principle which makes it impossible for flies or other insects to find entrance into a building through an aperture where an exhaust fan is sending a current outward. But the moment the exhaust fan is stopped, the way is opened for the various classes of insects which infest our buildings. Similarly, if for any reason the human organism becomes unable to assimilate a sufficient amount of vital force to keep up this radiating emanation it is also possible for the dreaded micro-organisms to enter and obtain a foothold in the body where they then commence their ravages, to the further detriment of health. In view of these facts the prevention of disease narrows itself down to the problem of how to keep the system from becoming clogged so that the radiant life-force may have an unimpeded flow. When the diseased conditions have set in the curative process must have the effect of opening the clogged channels to be successful.

Dr. Harvey W. Wiley, former chief of the Bureau of Chemistry at Washington, is reported as having said that the best way to cure a cold is to take a bottle of cough medicine, set it on the table in the patient's room, open all the windows and throw the bottle of medicine through one of them. In other words, instead of taking cough and cold remedies, use plenty of pure, fresh air. Without doubt there is much wisdom in this advice, but it does not go far enough. If he had said, "Bring in also a good dinner, breakfast, and supper for the patient and throw them after the bottle of medicine," he would have come much closer to a cure of the cold. For it may be said, without fear of successful contradiction, that the greatest number of the disease to which the flesh is said to be heir come from taking too much food and not the right kind, also from lack of mastication. This latter perhaps is the greatest of our sins.

Baron Munchausen, the celebrated champion prevaricator, relates how when he visited the Moon he found that the people cooked their food as we do, but instead of sitting down to the table and eating it bit by bit they simple opened the door in the left side and put the food into their stomachs. We have not reached that point at present, but we are very close to it. The way in which the average American bolts his food is deplorable to say the least. The quick lunch rooms with their uncomfortable stools where it is impossible to rest and relax while partaking of the so-called food are a national menace. Everyone who sits down at one of these places seems intent upon setting a record for swallowing the greatest amount of food in the shortest possible time. And the abominable methods of preserving everything on ice for many months in order that certain middle men and large wholesalers may make prices soar for their personal profits is adding in no small measure to the dangers of ill-health which threaten every community in the so-called civilized world where these questionable modern methods are in vogue. From these "pure" foods surcharged with poisons, we endeavor to build our bodies and this, as is well-known, as accomplished by transforming as much thereof as possible to blood while the rest is to be eliminated as waste.

It is custom of the medical profession to see that the proper elimination of waste takes place, no matter what the nature of the disease may be. Anyone who attempts to break up a cold must necessarily imitate this wise method and see that the proper excretory function is stimulated to the highest possible degree, for that is one important method of freeing the system and enabling the life-force to flow through it again. The other part of the food which is transformed into blood does not remain in the fluid state but is evaporated or even etherealized according to the development of the Ego in whose it flows. It surges through the whole body as steam through a boiler, and when it comes in contact with the cold air through pores clogged by a surplus amount of food poison and partly anesthetized so as to be unresponsive to the nervous impulse which otherwise closes them partially against the chill, the blood is liquefied or partly liquefied and becomes a burden and a clog to that part of the blood stream which is not affected. As a result, micro-organisms are generated which form the pus we sense as a cold.

A person who is injured and loses a quantity of blood feels weak. So does the person whose blood has been chilled within him and for the same reason, but he who has a cold must further expend effort to get rid of the deleterious waste before he can be cured. Gluttony, bad food, and faulty mastication are not the only causes of colds. It is a fact well-known to every esotericist that all that is in the visible world is a manifestation of something that was pre-existent in the invisible realms of nature, and cold is no exception. When we know that there is an immutable law of cause and effect and that there can be no effect without an underlying and adequate cause, we may easily realize the truth of this statement. It is also certain that nothing can come to us which we have not in some way deserved, and therefore if we look for causes in the invisible realm, we shall find that they must naturally have to do with ourselves.

The cold that we sense here, and which is a disagreeable manifestation to us, is an outcome of something that existed within ourselves previously, but what? To this question it may be confidently affirmed that our own attitude of mind is an all-important factor in the state of health. This also is well-known to medical science and all observing persons. A man who is habitually optimistic, whose mouth has an upward turn at the corners, always on the verge of expanding into a broad smile, will be found to be singularly immune from colds as well as other diseases. On the other hand the person with the drooping mouth and the drawn face, who is always worrying about things that never materialize, who sees an enemy in every human being, and persistently holds an attitude of anger and malice toward his fancied or real enemies, by that very attitude of mind shrinks into a shell and prevents assimilation of the radiant etheric life-forces. He is therefore a prey to all the ills to which the flesh is heir. Nor can he be cured by all the medicine ever made until he learns to abandon his dark outlook on life. These cases are of course extreme, and there are all gradations as well as mixtures of the two natures. However, it will be found that all the health of a person varies with his view of life in almost exact ratio.

From the foregoing remarks we may therefore draw the following deduction: the best preservative of health is an optimistic attitude of mind which looks upon life fearlessly and sees a friend in everyone.

There should also be circumspection and discrimination in the matter of food. We must avoid excess. It is better to eat too little than to have too much, and we should make it a point to have comfortable seat where we may relax the body while we leisurely masticate our food.

Proper attention should also be paid to the matter of elimination, and when it is not up to normal certain foods which contain a superabundance of cellulose should be taken to promote this perfect action.

To sum up in a sentence: be cheerful, be temperate in food. Cheerfulness, temperance in food, and right elimination are a compound which would cure almost all the ills to which flesh is the heir.

The Food of the Future

Question: Since evolutionary progress demands changes in man's food from time to time, will you kindly indicate some characteristics of the food of the future?

Answer: At the present time food taken internally is broken down and decomposed by heat inside the body. Thus the chemical ether permeating each particle of food combines with the chemical ether of our vital body. The food magnetized by the Sun working in the plant is thereby assimilated, and remains with us until this magnetism is exhausted. The more directly food comes to us from the soil, the more solar magnetism it contains. Consequently, it "stays with us" the longest when eaten uncooked. When food has gone through the process of cooking, a part of the ether it contained is lost, as a number of the finer particles are dissolved by heat and ascend in the kitchen as odor from whatever food it comes. Consequently the cells of cooked food remain a shorter time as a part of our body than in the case of an uncooked food, and food which has already been assimilated by the animal has very little chemical ether of its own (except milk which is obtained by a vital process and has a greater quantity of ether than any other food). Hence with regard to the flesh of animals it may be said that most of the chemical ether in the fodder has gone into the vital body of the animal before it was killed, and at its death the vital body leaves the carcass. Therefore flesh putrefies very much quicker than vegetables and "stays with us" only a short time after we eat it.

Death and disease are largely due to the fact that we subsist on food composed of cells robbed of their individual chemical ether obtained during plant assimilation. This is different and not to be confused with the planetary chemical ether which permeates mineral, plant, animal, and man. But the flesh food deprived by death of the individual vital body which ensouled the animal during life is really reduced to its chemical mineral form and as such is of small value in vital processes. In fact, it is a detriment thereto and ought to be eliminated from the system as quickly as possible. But being mineral, these particles of flesh are dead and difficult to move. Therefore, they accumulate gradually. Even a part of the plant food which is ash and mineral stays in our system, so there is a gradual process of clogging which we describe as growth. This is because we rob the plant or other food of its chemical ether. Were we like the plants and capable of impregnating the mineral with ether we would really be able to assimilate it and grow to giant statures, but as it is, the dead material accumulates more and more until finally growth is stopped, because our powers of assimilation become less and less efficient.

In the future we shall not digest our food inside the body, but extract the chemical ether and inhale it through the nose where it comes in contact with the pituitary body. This is the general organ for assimilation and promoter of growth. Then our body will become more and more ethereal, the life processes will not be hindered by clogging waste and consequently disease will gradually disappear and life be lengthened. It is significant in this connection that often cooks feel no inclination to eat because the pungent odor of cooking satisfies them to a great extent.

Science is gradually learning the truths previously taught by esoteric science and their attention is being more and more directed to the ductless glands which will give them the solution of many mysteries. However, they do not seem to be aware as yet that there is a physical connection between the pituitary, the principal organ for assimilation, and therefore of growth, and the adrenals, which eliminate the waste and assimilate the proteins. These are also physically connected both with the spleen and the thymus and thyroid glands. It is significant in this connection from the astrological point of view, that the pituitary body is ruled by Uranus, which is the higher octave of Venus, the ruler of the solar plexus where the seed atom of the vital body is located. Thus Venus keeps the gate of the vital fluid coming direct from the Sun through the spleen, and Uranus is warder of the gate where vitality enters through the physical food. It is the blending of these two streams which produces the latent power stored up in our vital body until converted to dynamic energy by the martial desire nature.

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Contemporary Mystic Christianity

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