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Philosophic Encyclopedia
The Rosicrucian Philosophy in Questions and Answers
Questions Dealing With The Bible

New and Old Testament Teachings Concerning Jehovah

"Most of the trouble and misinterpretation of what the Gospels really mean comes from the great misunderstanding of most people who believe that they are intended to relate the life story of an individual named Jesus Christ. It is perfectly true that they have been patterned after the life of Jesus, and it speaks for his greatness that his life should be taken as a pattern by the recorders of four different Schools of Initiation. However, what these men really wanted to write was the formulas of initiation, and the four Gospels therefore embody, hidden beneath an outer coating of blinds and nonessentials, the formulas of initiation of four different Mystery Schools."

Question: The teaching of the New Testament as touching the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, so winsome and so gracious, makes it difficult to identify the Holy Spirit with the vengeful Jehovah of the Old Testament. How is this to be reconciled?

Answer: It was the mission of Jehovah and His Angels to multiply whatever is upon the earth. In other words, He was the giver of children. Take the announcement of the angel to Mary: "The Holy Spirit shall come upon you and you shall conceive." There you have already a connecting link; but just as there are two sides to every question, so there are two sides also to the Holy Spirit. One phase of His work is done from the outside as a giver of law, and law when it is applied without, is a taskmaster that drives us to do this or that or prohibits us from doing other things. It demands an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. There is Jehovah, the author of the law; but when the time comes that we have received the law within and are not driven from without, the taskmaster becomes the Comforter. The whole universe is governed by law. Everything in the world rests upon law, and it is our safeguard as well as our taskmaster.

In the morning we leave our homes without concern, depending upon the law of gravity to keep them in place during our absence. We know that upon our return we shall find them where we have left them, although our planet is rushing along in its orbit at the rate of 65,000 miles per hour. We rely upon the expansion of gases for our motive power. In fact, everything in nature is based upon laws, and whether we know it or not, we are their slaves until by knowledge we learn to use them, to cooperate with them, and thus make them do our bidding and save us labor.

Similarly it is with the moral laws given by Jehovah upon Mt. Sinai. They were designed to bring us to Christ, and when Christ is born within, the law of the Holy Spirit also enters in. Man then is symbolized by the Ark that stood in the Holy of Holies and had within it the tables of the law. You will notice that the Comforter who came to the men of old was not an outside Comforter, but one who worked within, one who entered into them and became a part of them. When the Spirit of Law, the Holy Spirit, enters into us, He is the Comforter, because we do willingly the things which are prompted by this inner urge, while we resented and begrudged doing the bidding of the exterior taskmaster.

Raising the Dead

Question: In Questions And Answers you state that Christ did not raise the dead. In St. John, Chapter two, verse 11, Christ said, "Our friend Lazarus sleepeth," and then in the 14th verse Jesus said unto them plainly, "Lazarus is dead." It seems as if the Christ must have been mistaken in the first place, according to this. Which is right? Again in St. Matthew, the 10th Chapter, 8th verse, the apostles were told to raise the dead, etc.

Answer: Most of the trouble and misinterpretation of what the Gospels really mean comes from the great misunderstanding of most people who believe that they are intended to relate the life story of an individual named Jesus Christ. It is perfectly true that they have been patterned after the life of Jesus, and it speaks for his greatness that his life should be taken as a pattern by the recorders of four different Schools of Initiation. However, what these men really wanted to write was the formulas of initiation, and the four Gospels therefore embody, hidden beneath an outer coating of blinds and nonessentials, the formulas of initiation of four different Mystery Schools.

The instance mentioned, the raising of Lazarus, or the widow's son of Naim, does not involve calling a departed Spirit back to its discarded vehicle. That is not done. "When once the silver cord is loosed the Spirit returns to God who gave it and the dust whence it was taken." When a candidate comes to a point where he is to be raised up to a higher level and a greater power than he possessed before, then he must first die to things that are past and behind him. The path becomes narrower and narrower with every step, and he cannot enter into the straight gate which leads to a higher realm in nature until he has shed the body that correlated him to the next lower realm. Therefore, in that sense it is said of him at the moment when he is ready for the transition that he is dead.

If you will read Freemasonry And Catholicism, you will find that Lazarus had previously been Hiram Abiff, the Master Mason, and chief builder of Solomon's Temple; that Jesus had been previously embodied as the personality called Solomon; and that the Christ Spirit dwelling in Jesus at the time of the recorded raising of Lazarus was the great Initiator who raised him up and made him a Hierophant of the Lesser Mysteries. He is now known as Christian Rosenkreuz, the head of the Western Wisdom School, and co-worker with Jesus to unite humanity and bring them to the Kingdom of Christ.

In a similar manner, and upon a smaller scale, the Apostles were given power to raise the dead. To the babes they gave only milk, but to those who were strong they gave the meat of the doctrine, and instructed them in the mysteries, until they had reached a certain point where, by living the life, they died and were raised up to a more abundant life in a larger sphere of usefulness. However, as already said, these deaths did not involve what we usually call the death of the body.

Natural Riches and Spirituality

Question: The Bible says: "Blessed are the poor for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." It also states that it is more difficult for a rich man to enter heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle. Many other passages seem to show that poverty is a blessing and that riches are a curse. Why then to the churches solicit money and acquire riches, and why is are students of The Rosicrucian Teachings starting to do the same?

Answer: We are well aware that a superficial reading of the Bible may and does give a semblance of justification for ideas as set forth in the above question, but even by applying common sense apart from Scripture it is self evident that poverty cannot be regarded as a virtue in itself. Neither are riches as such to be classed as a vice. The passage quoted from Luke: "Blessed are the poor for theirs is the Kingdom of God," requires a qualification. This Matthew gives when he writes: "Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs if the Kingdom of Heaven."

In the beginning mankind was set on the earth to till it, make it fruitful, to have dominion over everything there. In other words, they were to labor, and naturally the fruits of their labor must accrue. As time went on possessions had accumulated and also man's desire for possessions. Therefore instead of man having dominion over the world and over things therein, as Emerson said: "Things are in the saddle and ride humanity." Many and many a man thinks that he owns a store, a business, or factory, but if he were to sit down and take actual and unbiased account of his things he would find that the factory and the store own him, that he is a slave to his possessions, that they demand his time and the joy of life which might otherwise be his. He lives in constant fear that he may be robbed, or that a business failure may take away his possessions. He is never at peace, always afraid because of his riches. Such a condition is all too common, and under that condition riches are certainly a curse.

That man, however, is not poor in spirit. Another may legally own a factory, giving employment to a large number of men, and may yet feel himself God's steward, taking care of a certain part of the world's work. As he does not consider himself the personal owner of the things around him, he is really poor in spirit, though he may be rich in a legal sense. Moreover, if he is consistent in carrying this attitude of mind to his death, then it is an absolute certainty he has laid up a great deal of treasure in heaven. Therefore he is rich in that place and will enter with flying colors, no matter if the gates were microscopical.

Similarly, churches may acquire great riches on earth and gain treasure in heaven if they use them well for the alleviation of suffering. That does not mean either, that we should give to everyone indiscriminately. Discrimination is certainly a great factor in soul growth, and we have every precedence and incentive to use that faculty in giving as well as in all other departments of life. Indiscriminate giving often makes paupers of people who would otherwise be useful. Certainly the Bible is not so illogical that it would hold that poverty in itself is a virtue, for then we could all lead a life of idleness, which attitude is unfortunately all too common among people who profess to follow the higher life. As a matter of fact, many poor people may have to give an account of the reason they are poor. Opportunities come to each and every one of us, and if we have failed to grasp them, if we have been spendthrifts of time and of the little material means we have had and thereby prevented ourselves from getting more wherewith to do good, we shall certainly have to render an account for our actions. On the other hand, the rich man who has used his riches well may be commended for the way he has conducted his Father's business.

As for the reference to students of The Rosicrucian Teachings, it is scarcely worth answering, for, of course, anyone who uses discrimination knows that they as such have not been soliciting funds for anything. Certain students have started an agitation for funds, and there is no reason why that may not go on among themselves. The paraphernalia wherewith to do the work has to be obtained, and if the members feel that need, and want to supply it, it is certainly their privilege. The writer has absolutely no right to interfere. Therefore, the letters are published and the opinions that are expressed are in order. Only if instigated in any sense by the writer, would they be out of place and detrimental to the work of the students of The Rosicrucian Teachings, for, as is often said, it is not permitted to him to solicit contributions for anything whatever.

Resurrection of the Body

Question: What is meant in the Apostles' Creed and in the Bible by the resurrection of the body?

Answer: The Apostles' Creed was not composed until centuries after the Apostles had passed away, and then it was taken to embody what they had believed. Neither they nor the Bible teach the resurrection of the body. That phrase is not to be found in the Good Book at all. In King James' version we read (Job 19:26) that "though after my skin, worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God;" and this passage is the chief reliance of those who endeavor to establish this absurd doctrine. However, the translators appointed by King James were poor Hebrew scholars, and most of them died before the translation was completed. In the Revised Version you find another interpretation as follows:

"And after my skin, even this body is destroyed; then without my flesh shall I see God." Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God; therefore, what in the world would be the use of having a body such as we have now? Furthermore, this body must be perpetuated at the present time, and we are told that in the resurrection there shall be neither marrying nor giving in marriage — another argument which shows that a vehicle of another kind from the flesh will be used. Besides, it is a well-known, well-established scientific fact that the atoms in our bodies are constantly coming and going. Now, if there is to be a resurrection of the body, which sets of atoms is it to be that shall come forth in this resurrected body? Or if every atom that ever was in our body from birth to death is to be in that resurrected body, would it not be an enormous conglomeration, since we should then have immense bodies composed of layers? It would in fact be a scientific conundrum. Now, as Paul says, the seed is put in the ground each time to gather a new body. (See I Cor., 15).

The Immaculate Conception

Question: In The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception is the following paragraph: "The vow of absolute celibacy applies to the greater initiations only, and even then a single act of fecundation may sometimes be necessary, as an act of sacrifice, as was the case of providing the body for Christ." The Christian Religion teaches that Jesus, the Christ, was born of a virgin, which is otherwise expressed as an Immaculate Conception. Are such teachings, and in its strictest adherence to the definition "divine," is the birth of Jesus so considered by the Rosicrucians?

Answer: According to the teachings of the Rosicrucians it is necessary to distinguish very sharply between the Christ and Jesus. When we search the Memory of Nature we find that the Spirit born into the body of Jesus was a very advanced Ego, which had reached a most sublime spirituality through many lives of holy, self-sacrificing service, and it is possible to trace the previous births of that Ego as easily as we may seek out the past experiences of any other entity belonging to the human race. However, we shall search in vain for any previous embodiment of the Christ because He does not belong to our evolution at all. He was the highest Initiate of the Sun Period, and the ordinary humanity of that far distant past have now evolved to a state of high spirituality. We may call them Archangels.

Until 2,000 years ago the earth was ruled with an iron hand by Jehovah and His Angels, who were the evolutionary product of a past period. Under His regime the fear of the law was pitted against the desires of the flesh. Every transgression required an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. This, however, left no scope for the evolution of love and altruism. "Perfect love casteth out all fear," and Christ came into the world to save humanity from law and egoism by cultivation of love and altruism.

However, it is an inexorable law in nature that no one can build a body of material which, by evolution, he has not learned to manipulate, and in the far distant past, when the Archangels were at the human stage, the world which they inhabited was made of desire stuff. Hence, as our dense physical body is made from the chemical constituents of our present earth, so the densest body of an Archangel is made of desire stuff. For many centuries before He actually came into our midst, the Christ Spirit worked on the earth from the outside, to purify the earth's desire body that we might gain materials wherefrom to build purer and better desires and emotions. Obviously this could be done much better by an indwelling Spirit if a way could be provided to secure for it an entrance into the earth. It was the mission of Joseph, Mary, and Jesus to provide this vehicle, consisting of a dense and vital body, to which the desire body and higher vehicles of the Christ could link themselves for a brief period while He accomplished His mission.

When the generative act is performed in a low, brutal manner, when it is tainted with lust and passion it certainly degrades below the level of beasts those who participate in this act of desecration. On the other hand, when prospective parents prepare themselves by prayer and lofty aspirations to perform the act as a sacrament, regardless of self-gratification, the conception is immaculate. It is evident that it is not the physical virginity that counts as a virtue, for every one is at that stage during the early years of life. It is the purity, the chastity of the soul, which makes the pure virgin, both father and mother.

According to the teachings of the Rosicrucians, backed up by research in the Memory of Nature, such was the condition of Joseph and Mary when the body which formed around the seed atom of Jesus was conceived. The Sun Spirit, Christ, could not construct such a vehicle. Besides it would have been a useless expenditure of valuable energy for such a great Spirit to pass through the womb and bring a body up through the years of childhood until it had arrived at the age of maturity where it could be used. Therefore, this task was delegated to Jesus who used the body until the time of the Baptism, when we are told the Spirit descended upon it as a dove. There Jesus left his body which was inhabited from that time to the end by the Christ Spirit, and we have thus, during the three years' ministry, to deal with a composite entity, Jesus the Christ.

It should be understood that the great Hierarchies who have aided us in our evolution always work with the laws which they have given for our guidance and not against them, and having once evolved the method of building a body by the union of man and woman, they would not think of suspending that law any more than they would for a single moment think of suspending the law of gravitation. We can easily imagine what chaos would result if people, houses, street cars, and everything else not securely anchored to the earth, would tumble into the air, and the disasters to our social structure which would follow the suspension of the law of fecundation can also be imagined. In fact the interpolated accounts also make it clear that Joseph intended to put Mary away. Such a course would naturally follow a miracle not known or believed by the ordinary husband. As a further evidence of tampering by the translators you will also notice that the genealogy of Jesus is traced to Joseph, and if he were not the father this would be foolish; then also Jesus could not have been said to have sprung from the root of David.

There are ways, however, of making a body available to the Adept without going through the womb. Before describing this method let it be thoroughly understood that the term "Adept" is not to be applied to the egotists or charlatans who thus style themselves in newspaper advertising or among a coterie of dupes. The true Adept is one who has reached a high stage of spirituality, and what that stage is, we shall understand by comparing the ordinary seer and the Initiate with him.

The seer is one who has developed the spiritual sight. If he has no control over the faculty, he sees things in the invisible world when they present themselves before him. He has choice neither as to what he sees nor when, nor the power to shut off any scene that may be disagreeable to him. The voluntary seer is one who, at will, can call up sights and scenes from the invisible worlds and can turn his spiritual vision upon any object or even for as long or as short a time as he desires.

It is commonly believe among most people who have not given the subject thought, that when any one is able to see things in the invisible worlds he is, so to speak, omniscient, and knows about everything there. As a matter of fact, the ability to see things in the invisible worlds does not carry with it the faculty of understanding all about them, any more than the ability to see a machine here gives us the knowledge how to operate it.

The Initiate is one who has not only the ability to see things in the invisible worlds, but also the faculty of leaving his body consciously and operating or investigating these things. Thus by degrees he acquires a knowledge of their inner workings and how to link these forces, which we call laws of nature, to the chariot of evolutionary progress.

The Adept is one who sees and knows, and has, in addition, become proficient in the use of the laws of nature for the production of what, to the ordinary person, seems magic, but which is in reality only the higher application of the same laws that govern in the ordinary course of life.

We are all familiar with the fact that food which we take into our system is largely wasted because of our lack of knowledge regarding the real requirements of this vehicle, coupled with the fact that most of us eat to please the palate rather than to nourish the system. This interferes with the metabolism and more food is wasted than assimilated.

Even that part of the food which we assimilate does not always form healthy tissue, but flabby flesh, which is a dead load on us, and the vital body is constantly struggling to rid itself of undesirable surplus weight. After a heavy meal the seer may observe a black band of elastic, jellylike consistency, formed of ether, about the abdominal region of the gourmand. This is the poison, generated by the fermentation of unhealthy food taken in an overdose, which is being expelled by the dense body by the radiating streams of the vital body in the effort of the latter vehicle to cleanse the clogged system.

We also waste bodily tissue by indulging in pleasures, by unnecessary motions and emotions, causing the dense body to age and die long before it would die if properly used.

The Adept is different. He knows how to control his actions and emotions, thus saving all unnecessary strain upon the body. He also knows the exact elements required to keep up his body, and the proper proportion in which to take them. Thus he secures the maximum nutrition and a minimum of waste.

For that reason he may keep his body in a state of youthful appearance and vigorous health for hundreds of years. It is said among the lay-brothers of the Rosicrucians that Christian Rosenkreuz is today using a body which has been thus preserved for several centuries. This may or may not be so, the writer has no means of knowing, for our august leader is never seen by any of the lay brothers who gather at the Temple for the midnight Service. His presence is only felt, and is the signal for beginning the work. However, in conversation with some of the lay brothers who have been connected with the temple for twenty, thirty, and forty years in this life, it has developed that the Elder Brothers, of whom we speak as our Teachers, look just about the same today as they did thirty or forty years ago. Judging by the standards of ordinary men we should say that the Elder Brothers seem now to be about forty years of age and this lends color to the statement of teaching as given in the foregoing.

We see then that the Adepts are able to preserve their bodies for centuries, maybe millenniums, but they are also able to create a new vehicle if for any reason that becomes expedient, and this is one of the ways described by the Elder Brother.

It is a law in nature that the cell life inherent in any particle of food must be overpowered by the Ego before it can be assimilated. (See in this connection the section on assimilation in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception). Hence, it is impossible for the Adept to make an extract of the elements whereof a body is built forming them into a vehicle and then stepping from the old to the new. He must first take them into his own body that they may be attuned to the seed atom and properly assimilated. Then after they have been appropriated by him in the manner decreed by the laws of nature, he may again extract them and use them to build a new body. Therefore the Adept commences this work by increasing his diet and extracting the surplus amount of food. Being so thoroughly self-controlled he also has the power to control and hold in subjection the live food elements which he then uses gradually to build a body. This vehicle is usually placed in a room not entered by anyone else. When it is finished and the Adept desires to make the change, he simply steps out of his old body into the new.

The use of this method is the solution to the mystery surrounding the early life and antecedents of such men as Count St. Germain, Cagliostro, etc. They were Adepts who stepped out of an environment when they had outgrown their usefulness into a new field. The bodies they had left behind bore no names, and no one suspected that the Spirit which had inhabited them had not taken the usual post-mortem course.

It is also a law in nature that no one can make a vehicle unless he has learned by evolution how to do it. Great and mighty as was the Cosmic Sun Spirit, Christ, He could not build a dense body, either in the womb, or by the magical method last described, for he never had the experience in the heaven life where the archetypes of bodies are built, nor has He gone through the actual experiences such as have been the lot of mankind for ages. Therefore, it was necessary that someone be chosen to build a body for Him. That honor and privilege fell to Joseph, Mary and Jesus, who furnished the dense body and cared for it during the years of growth until maturity had been reached, together with the vital body necessary to keep the dense instrument alive and to complete the link of the desire body of Christ.

Thus, when properly understood, it is true that Jesus was born of a virgin and that the conception was immaculate. The mistake lies in confusing Jesus with Christ. Mark that the Angel Gabriel commanded that his name should be called Jesus. Christos means "anointed," and refers to an office, a function, and not to a person. Therefore, it is not until after the Baptism when he has been anointed with the Spirit that he is spoken of as Jesus Christ, or in English, the anointed Jesus. It is also a mistake to regard the birth of Jesus as unique. We have the word of Christ that the things which He did, shall we also do and greater. The Immaculate Conception, the Baptism (the christening or anointing), the period of service and ministry, the Cross and the Crown, will in their turn become personal experiences to every one among us, for we are all Christs-in-the-making and must sometime grow to the full stature of Divinity.

Why the Jews Keep the Sabbath

Question: The Rosicrucians teach that Christ is the Sun-spirit, and it seems therefore perfectly logical that we keep Sunday sacred to his worship in Christian lands. However, Jehovah is the ruler of the Moon. Why then were not the Jews taught to keep Monday holy instead of Saturn's day, which is now their Sabbath?

Answer: There is an esoteric connection between Saturn, the Sun, and the Moon, which rule Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. The Sun and Saturn are ministers of life and death, and the Moon is, so to speak, the shuttle-cock on which mankind is constantly being thrown from one pole to another while the web of experience is being woven. The Moon's north Node, which we call the Dragon's Head, partakes of the nature of the life-giving Sun and ushers humanity into the period of physical activity. The South Node ushers us into the rest of death by the saturnine forces of the Dragon's Tail. In other words, both Saturn and the Moon are gates of entrance an exit from the invisible world, or Chaos, the Moon in a planetary capacity and Saturn in the cosmic sense.

When a great Creative Day of Manifestation is ushered in, time always begins with a Saturn Period, and at that time the life waves of Spirits which have been undergoing the subjective phase of evolution during the preceding Cosmic Night are ushered into active manifestation, and this takes place during the Saturn Revolution of every Period. In the smaller earth-sphere of our present activity when an Ego is ready for rebirth into terrestrial life the Moon marks the time of both conception and birth, thus taking over the saturnine function of ushering in evolving Egos from the dark Cosmic Night of death to the solar universe of life and light. There are, however, some Egos who do not evolve, but are stragglers upon the path of evolution. For them there comes a time when they are finally ejected to the Moon and are denied the opportunity and privilege of rebirth in the present evolutionary class. They then remain upon the Moon until the vehicles they have crystallized by lack of action are finally dissolved, and as they cannot go forward with the stream of evolution, there is only one other way open to them, viz., to gravitate back through the gate of Saturn into Chaos, or Cosmic Night, where they must await another opportunity of manifestation in a later life stream.

Jehovah is not Ruler of the Jews to the exclusion of all other people. He is the Law-giver and Cosmic Lord of fecundation. Therefore, He has a special mission to perform for all pioneer people of any epoch or period where a great host of Spirits are to be furnished with vehicles of a new type. It is He who multiplies the pioneer people abundantly, gives them the laws appropriate to their evolution and thus starts them upon a new period of development. If we remember this fact and also bear in mind that the first part of an epoch is saturnine, then we shall understand that although the original Semites who were the forbears of the post-Atlantean race were multiplied as the sands on the seashore and given their laws by Jehovah, they were also living in the Saturn part of the post-Atlantean epoch and therefore were logically taught to keep Saturn's day as a day of rest.

The Bible says that the law was supreme until the advent of the great Sun Spirit. Christ started a new phase of evolution under the principle of love, and regeneration. This ended the regime of Jehovah and the sway of Saturn, not abruptly of course, for there is always an overlapping of the old and the new. However, from that time we, the pioneer Christian people, have entered upon the second, or Sun part of the post-Atlantean Epoch, and are therefore now substituting the Sun's day for the day of Saturn, as a day of worship.

As we have spoken of the Moon and Saturn as being the gates of Chaos, this may cause the students to wonder what becomes of the rest of us, and we may therefore briefly state the Mystic Christian teaching on this point.

Ordinary humanity who follow the path of evolution are led to the Kingdom of Christ, the Sun Spirit. Stragglers who fail to keep up with the procession retrograde to the Kingdom of Jehovah, the Moon Spirit.

The advance guard of humanity, the Initiates who have passed both the lesser and greater Initiations and appear before the Liberator (the great Being in charge of evolution on Earth), are given the choice of staying here an helping their brothers in this world or of going to Jupiter and preparing the conditions under which humanity may evolve in the future Jupiter Period.

Advanced souls who misuse their powers as black magicians eventually retrograde directly to Saturn and are forced into Chaos by dissolution of their vehicles.

Saturn has a preponderance of the fourth or reflecting ether. Hence its pale light, and the Egos who go there leave a record of their lives and are then propelled outward toward Chaos by way of Saturn's moons.

Jupiter has a preponderance of the third or light ether. Hence its brilliancy, and the advanced Egos who come to Jupiter from the outside go inward through the moons and then begin, as said, a constructive work for the Jupiter Period.

Meaning of the Letters I.N.R.I.

Question: What is the meaning of the letters I.N.R.I. sometimes placed over the cross?

Answer: We are told in the gospel story that Pilate placed a sign reading, "Jesus Nazarenus Rex Judaeorum," and His Cross, and this is translated in the authorized version to mean "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews." But the four initials, I.N.R.I., placed upon the Cross represent the names of the four elements in Hebrew: Iam, water; Nour, fire; Ruach, spirit or vital air; and Iabeshah, earth. This is the esoteric key to the mystery of crucifixion, for it symbolizes in the first place the Salt, Sulphur, Mercury, and Azoth which were used by the ancient alchemists to make the Philosopher's Stone, the universal solvent, the elixir-vitae.

The two "I's" (Iam and Iabeshah) represent the salient luna element water, (a) in fluidic state holding salt in solution, and (b) in the coagulated extract of this water, "the salt of the earth." In other words, the finer fluidic vehicles of man and his dense body. N, (Nour) in Hebrew stands for fire and the combustible elements, chief among which are sulphur and phosphorus, so necessary to oxidation and without which warm blood would be an impossibility. The Ego could not then function in the body, nor could thought find a material expression. R (Ruach) is the Hebrew equivalent for the Spirit, Azoth, functioning in the mercurial mind. Thus the four letters, I.N.R.I., placed over the Cross of Christ according to the gospel story represent composite man, the Thinker, at the point of his spiritual development when he is getting ready for liberation from the cross of his dense vehicle.

Proceeding further along the same line of elucidation we may note that I.N.R.I. is the symbol of the crucified candidate for the following additional reasons:

Iam is the Hebrew word signifying water, the fluidic lunar element, which forms the principal part of the human body (about 87 per cent), and this word is also the symbol of the finer fluidic vehicles of desire and emotion.

Nour, the Hebrew word signifying fire, is a symbolic representation of the heat-producing red blood laden with martial iron, fire, and energy, which the esotericist sees coursing as gas through the veins and arteries of the human body, infusing it with energy and ambition, and without which there could be neither material nor spiritual progress. It also represents the sulphur and phosphorus necessary for the material manifestation of thought as already mentioned.

Ruach, the Hebrew word for Spirit, or vital air, is an excellent symbol of the Ego clothed in the mercurial mind which makes man man, and enables him to control and direct his bodily vehicles and activities in a rational manner.

Iabeshah is the Hebrew word for earth, representing the solid fleshy part which makes up the cruciform earthy body, crystallized within the finer vehicles at birth and severed from them in the ordinary course of things at death, or in the extraordinary event that we learn to die the mystic death and ascend to the glories of higher spheres for a time.

This stage of the Christian Mystic's spiritual development therefore involves a reversal of the creative force from its ordinary downward course through the tripartite spinal cord where the three segments are ruled by the Moon, Mars, and Mercury, respectively, and where the ray of Neptune then lights the regenerative Spinal Spirit-fire which, mounting upward, sets the pituitary body and the pineal gland into vibration. This, opening up the spiritual sight and striking the frontal sinus, starts the crown of thorns throbbing with pain as the bond with the physical body is burned by the sacred spirit-fire which wakes this center from its age long sleep to a throbbing, pulsating life, sweeping onward to the other centers in the five-pointed stigmatic star. They are also vitalized and the whole vehicle becomes aglow with a golden glory. Then with a final wrench the great vortex of the desire body located in the liver is liberated, and the martial energy contained in that vehicle propels upward and sidereal vehicle (so-called because the stigmata in the head, hands, and feet are located in the same relative position to one another as the points in the five-pointed star), which ascends through the skull (Golgotha), while the crucified Christian utters his triumphant cry, "Consummatum est" (it has been accomplished), and soars into the subtler spheres to seek Jesus whose life he has imitated with such success and from whom he is henceforth inseparable. Jesus is his Teacher and his guide to the Kingdom of Christ where all shall be united in one body to learn and to practice the religion of the Father to whom the Kingdom will eventually revert that He may be All in All.

The Miraculous Draft of Fishes

Question: If we should not eat meat, I presume fish is included. what then is the answer to the miraculous draft of fishes as told in the Bible? No doubt these were wanted for food.

Answer: We have often stated, that while the Gospels are true versions of the life of the man Jesus, they are also manuals of initiation. The Sun, as visible in the heavens, is the physical light bearer which is the "light of the world," but behind it there is the invisible Sun carrying also spiritual light. The initiate who follows the path of initiation is in the same sense a light burner or enlightener of the people. Therefore, his life is inseparably connected with the Sun, which in its yearly course goes through the twelve signs of the zodiac by direct motion from Aries, the ram, to Pisces, the fishes, and in its course ripens the grain and the grape which feed mankind physically. There is also another motion of the Sun known by astronomers as the precession of the equinox, whereby the Sun goes through each sign in about 2,100 years. This is connected with the spiritual progress of humanity, and therefore the symbol of the savior of any age is always that of the sign through which the Sun at that particular time is moving by precession.

To keep within historic times, we may say, that at the time when the Sun by precession went through the sign Taurus, the Bull or Calf was worshiped among the most advanced human nations. We find the Bull, Apis, among the Egyptians, and Mithras, the Persian Christ, riding upon a Bull. However, when the Sun by precession moved from Taurus, the Bull, into Aries, the sign of the Ram or Lamb, God's people went out of Egypt at the passover, or vernal equinox, when the Sun passes over the equator. It then became idolatry to worship the Bull or Calf, and they were taught to worship the Ram or Lamb of God. At the time of the advent of Christ the Sun by precession was in about seven degrees of Aries and within orb of the next sign, Pisces, the fishes. He was the Savior of the coming dispensation. Therefore He sought fishermen, and as He took them from their vocation, He stated He would make them fishers of men. All through the New Testament you will find this continual allusion to fishes.

At the time when the Christian religion was being established after His death, there was controversy whether the symbol of this Savior should be the Lamb or the Fish. Therefore, as a relic of that controversy we have even to the present day the bishops wearing a miter shaped as the head of a fish. At the same time the functionaries of that church also have the staff of the Shepherd, signifying the connection with Aries, the lamb. It was not until several centuries after the crucifixion of Christ Jesus that the Lamb was used as His symbol. Pisces, the sign of the fishes, is a watery sign, and therefore we see at the doors of the Catholic Church the holy water wherewith the worshipers make the sign. They are taught that on Fridays they must abstain from the use of meat and take fish instead, and also during Lenten season fish is the main food. All this because the Sun by precession is going through the sign Pisces. It is now nearing Aquarius, the sign of the Son of Man, and in that day and age the symbol of the savior will be different. A different phase of the Christian religion will also have its vogue to meet the needs of the more advanced generations which will then inhabit the earth. In fact, that is the object of the Rosicrucian Teachings.

"There Shall Be No More Sea"

Question: In the Apocalypse John says, "There shall be no more sea." What does that mean?

Answer: It means just what it says, for the earth itself is going through a number of stages of evolution which furnish the conditions necessary for our development. There was the dark age during which the material for our planet was gathered together in a fermentative and germinative condition which produced heat so that at a certain point when the creative fiat, "Let there be light" was uttered, this material became a luminous fire mist, revolving upon its axis and heating the surrounding atmosphere which was then cooled by contact with outer space. Thus moisture was generated, and it fell upon the glowing planet, with the result that a steam went outward, a fire fog.

For aeons of time this evaporation and condensation went on until the earth was encrusted and became what we know as dry land, from which a mist went upwards, to also stated in the Bible. This cooled and condensed, coming down upon the earth as a flood which finally cleared the air and gave us the atmospheric conditions which prevail today. In the past we had bodies fitting us to live in the varying environments on the earth, and today our vehicles are largely composed of water, as are the bodies of the animals and plants. However, the Bible tells us that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. We are told that we shall put off the physical body and that we shall be caught up in the air; also as you mention, "there shall be no sea." Thus the general conditions are placed before us and there are quite a few signs that though these changes are being brought about slowly, they are surely coming. Scientists are now beginning to recognize the fact that the earth is being deprived of its moisture. Says the Literary Digest:

"Many authorities recognize the fact that the earth is slowly losing its moisture. How this can occur is partially explained, we are told by C.F. von Hermann, in Science (New York), by the action of electrical discharges in decomposition vapor. One of the component gases, hydrogen, is very light and rises to the upper limits of the earth's atmosphere, where it is ultimately thrown off. This loss of hydrogen means in the long run a loss of water. The decomposition of the earth's moisture, with final loss, is also brought about by other agencies, notably the effect of the light-rays of the upper part of the spectrum. Mr. von Hermann quotes a writer in Umschau, Dr. Karl Stoeckel, as saying: 'It is believed that the ultra-violet rays of sunlight which fall upon the water vapor suspended in the lower strata of the earth's atmosphere decompose a small part of it to produce hydrogen, which rises to great heights."

On this Mr. von Hermann comments as follows: "I do not think it has been pointed out before that the earth's surface must be continuously losing hydrogen through the decomposition of water vapor by every flash of lightning. Pickering and others have recognized the hydrogen lines in the spectrum of lightning, and the larger works on meteorology mention the fact that lightning flashes decompose some water . . . The hydrogen formed by every lightning flash rises rapidly to the upper atmosphere and is lost to the earth. Considering the frequency of thunderstorms during the summer season in both hemispheres and at all times in the equatorial regions, the loss of hydrogen in this way cannot be considered as insignificant. As long as conditions upon the earth remain such as to render thunderstorms possible, the slow dessication of the earth must continue."

Thus the teachings of the Bible are being vindicated on every essential point as science advances. The facts discovered show how the past and the present have been described with accuracy. This gives us reason for our faith that the future developments will also be found in line with the truths taught in the Bible.

Colors of the Tabernacle Veil

Question: Why were the colors of the veil in the Tabernacle purple, scarlet, and white? Why were not the three primary colors, blue, red, and yellow represented?

Answer: Blue is the color of the Father who rules over the whole universe continually from the beginning of manifestation to the end thereof, omnipresent in everything that lives, breathes, and has its being. Red or scarlet is the color of the Holy Spirit which generates living creatures. When life takes a wrong expression, if restrained by a code of laws, the Holy Spirit thus becomes Jehovah, the Law-giver. Yellow is the color of Christ, the Lord of Love, who by that divine Principle supersedes the law and brings us again in direct contact and harmony with the Father.

Thus you will see that under the ancient regime it was impossible to have included the yellow and made all three primary colors emblematic of the Temple. For the time being the Father and Jehovah reigned. The blue and the scarlet, their colors, were on the Temple, and purple, which is the color resulting from the intermingling of the two primaries before named, was also there, showing not only their separate existence but their unity. In the last place there was the white space emblematic of the fact that still something remained unmanifested, and that was the third color, yellow.

From the time of Christ, the true Western Mystery School, the Rosicrucians, have had as their emblem the Red Roses, emblematic of the purification of the desire nature; the golden star, showing that the Christ is born within the disciple and radiates from the five points which represent the head and the four limbs. This is reflected upon the blue background emblematic of the Father. Thus it shows that the manifestation of God, Unity in Trinity, has been accomplished.

I have often thought that there was one lack in the literature of the Rosicrucian Teachings, namely, a devotional book, and thousands of our students have probably felt the same. To supply this lack many have taken up books of Eastern origin, which is a very bad practice. Many lives ago, when we of the Western world were in Eastern bodies, at a time when there was no Western world, as we know it today, these things fitted us, but today we have advanced beyond, and should rather look to our Christian saints for guidance on the path of Devotion. My own special book has been The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas a' Kempis. It is a wonderful volume. There is not a case in life that cannot find some fitting passage in this book; and the more one reads it the more one loves it. You probably know the residents on Mt. Ecclesia take turns alphabetically at reading during the morning and evening services. Whenever it comes my turn I pick up Thomas a' Kempis and read a chapter, starting at the beginning and going through to the end. Then one can begin over again. There is never a dull moment in the whole book, and it would be well for students who feel the desire for something to accelerate their devotional nature, to take up this little book as a reading. It can, I believe be procured from most book sellers all over the world.

The Temple Veil and the Priest's Robes

Question: Why were the colors of the veil of the Temple and the priest's robes as spoken of in Exodus, blue, purple, and scarlet, instead of the three primary colors?

Answer: The Tabernacle in the Wilderness was the first church ever erected on earth. When humanity had been driven away from the basins of the earth by the condensation of the waters which had previously hung like a dense mist over the earth, the spiritual sight which had hitherto guided them became a hindrance to physical development. Thus it waned, and man's senses became focused in the physical world. This change involved a severance from the Divine Hierarchies who had hitherto guided man on the path of evolution. They became invisible and man missed them. Then there arose in his heart a longing for God which was met by giving him the Tabernacle in the Wilderness and prescribing certain divine laws for his guidance. Jehovah was the Law-maker and the particular Genius of the Original Semites who were the seed race of the coming post-Atlantean Epoch; and behind Him stood the Most High, the Father. You will find this in such passages as Deuteronomy 32, verses 8 and 9, where it is stated that the Most High divided the people into nations and gave a certain portion to the Lord, who guided them and brought them out of Egypt, the land where the Bull was worshiped, into the post-Atlantean Rainbow Age. This was inaugurated by using the blood of the Lamb, Aries [sign], at the Passover accomplished by Noah and giving them laws by Moses which were all symbolically shown in the Tabernacle in the Wilderness.

The color of the Most High, the Father, is a spiritual blue. The color of Jehovah is red (indicating the sacrificial aspect of blood) and the mixture of these two colors produces purple. Therefore, these two colors were shown on the veil of the Temple, but there was also the color white, which showed in symbology that something was still missing. Under the regime of Jehovah it was necessary to give an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. That was demanded by the Law dictated by Him, and given to Moses. This Law reigned until Christ, who then brought grace and truth, rending the Temple veil. Under that ancient law sacrifices of animals were compulsory, for humanity had not yet learned how to make a sacrifice of themselves. When the Christ showed the way to truth and life by making a sacrifice of Himself, the Temple veil was rent, the old system was abrogated, and a new way was opened for the salvation of "whosoever will."

In the new dispensation there is therefore no veil on which the color of the Initiator may be displayed. A better way has been found of marking those that are Christ's with His golden color individually, and thus it is that those who follow the path of service and self-sacrifice evolve within their own aura the golden Christ color, which is the third of the primary colors. This is the priestly robe of the new dispensation without which no one can ever enter the Kingdom, and no robe obtained at pseudo initiations can ever take its place, no matter what price is paid.

Spiritual Hermaphrodites

Question: In your esoteric explanation of the opera Tannhauser, you state that man must find the woman in himself. Just what do you mean?

Answer: It is taught both in the Bible and esoterically that there was a time when mankind was male-female, hermaphrodite, or bisexual. At that time each was able to perpetuate the species without the assistance of anyone else. Man was then a complete unit, capable of self-fertilization. However, in order to become a perfect vehicle for the Spirit it was necessary that a brain should be evolved, together with a larynx, so that man might be able to think and express himself in words. In order to accomplish this one half the creative force was directed upward to build these organs and enable man to turn his creative consciousness outward and people the world with things of his fancy, such as we see in ships, houses, railways, telephones, and all other things made by the hand of man, which have first been conceived in thought, then objectified in the world.

Thus man became a creator on two planes, the physical and the mental, but we know that we cannot make an electric circuit with one wire. We must have two of opposite polarity and when one half the creative force was diverted to the brain, only the other half remained usable for procreation. Thus man ceased to be a complete creative unit and became dependent upon someone else to supply the part of the force which he lacked, either positive or negative, masculine or feminine. Since then sorrow, sin, and trouble have entered into the world, and we have come under the dominion of death. However, in time mankind will learn to turn the other half of the creative force upward through the spinal cord into the brain, which will then be bipolar.

At that time we shall use both the hemispheres of our cerebrum and not one as is now the case. When that day has come man will have found the woman within himself, and woman will have found the man within herself. Then it will not any longer be necessary to seek a mate in order to perpetuate our bodies, for we shall then be able to conceive in our brain a vehicle fit for our expression and objectify it as we now clothe our other ideas in physical form. It is by this power that Adepts perpetuate their physical existence and create a new body before they leave the old, but they have two spinal cords and use both hemispheres of the brain.

Man a Hermaphrodite

Question: Please explain the following seeming contradiction in Questions And Answers: "Man had first been like the gods, made in their image — male-female, a hermaphrodite, and later one side was taken away so that he became divided in two sexes." "Each spirit is complete in itself. It takes upon itself a male or a female body at different times in order to learn the lessons of life and it is only in the present stage of development that there is such a function as sex." The first quotation seems to imply that man was one and became divided into two parts while the latter quotation implies that man always was one and is not divided into two parts.

Answer: Both quotations are right, but the first refers to that which is now the physical body. During the stage of crystallization in the Hyperborean Epoch when man-in-the-making was plantlike, the physical body was like many plants in being able to fructify itself and create a new body, but later on in the Lemurian Epoch when it became necessary for man's evolution that he should have an instrument of thought and speech wherewith to express himself, one half of the sex force was diverted for the purpose of building a larynx and brain. Thus the physical body of one group of mankind retains the negative or feminine polarity for procreation, while another part of humanity has the positive or masculine gender developed in the physical body.

However, it should also be understood that it would have been impossible to divide humanity into sexes even for a time, were not the creative energy of the Spirit be bipolar. This dual creative force is used in all magic, and it expresses itself as Will and Imagination, masculine and feminine, positive and negative. Whether set in motion by God, the Architect of all the solar universe, or by an Initiate of any degree, the process is the same. It involves, first, the exercise of the feminine quality of Imagination whereby the thing to be created is pictured and molded in mind stuff to the minutest detail and forms an archetype for the thing to be created; and second, when this work has been done it requires a powerful effort of the masculine creative force, the concentrated Will, to gather and build into this archetype created by the imagination such material as is necessary for its manifestation in the world to which it belongs and wherein it has to function. The same process takes place when an Initiate has to mold a vehicle for himself wherein he may operate and materialize, or when a magician of the lower order desires to create a flower or a similar article for demonstration. Each one must then be able to exercise the feminine function of imagination in order to mold in the invisible world the object to be found. The odor and everything about it must be complete — color, shading, etc. Then the powerful effort of will marshals the physical atoms into the matrix and the object is manifested in the physical world.

A similar process also takes place in the creation of a new body under the present system. The powerful feminine imagination of the mother is necessary to mold the embryo into human shape during the period of gestation, and it is the concentrated will of the father during the moment of copulation which gives the needed impulse and furnishes the motive power during the time until the Ego is able to begin its own work.

It should not be forgotten either that humanity is still bisexual so far as the physical body is concerned, for though one sex is developed to completion, the other remains latent and in embryo, so to speak. Thus there is no contradiction between the quotations, for one refers to the physical body particularly and the other to the Spirit.

The Crown of Thorns

Question: Does it serve any real purpose to recall each year the suffering of Christ? If not, why does not the Christian Church omit the Passion and the Crown of Thorns, and concentrate its efforts upon celebrating Easter as a time of joy?

Answer: The gospel story as it is usually read by people in the churches is only the story of Jesus, a unique character, the Son of God in a special sense, who was once born in Bethlehem, lived once upon the earth for the short space of thirty-three years, who died once for mankind after much suffering, and is now permanently exalted to the right hand of the Father. Thence they expect Him to return to judge the quick and the dead, and they celebrate his birth and his death at certain time of the year, because they are supposed to have taken place on definite dates, the same as the birthday of Lincoln, Washington, or the Battle of Gettysburg.

While these explanations satisfy the multitudes who are not very deep in their inquiries concerning the truth, there is another side which is very patent to the mystic. This is a story of divine love and perpetual sacrifice that fills him with devotion to the cosmic Christ, who is born periodically in order that we may live and have an opportunity to evolve in this environment for he understands from that viewpoint that without such recurring annual sacrifice, this earth and its present conditions of advancement would be an impossibility.

At the time when the Sun is in the celestial sign Virgo (the Virgin) the Immaculate Conception takes place. A wave of solar Christ light and life is focused upon the earth. Gradually this light penetrates deeper into the earth, until the turning point is reached on the longest and the darkest night of the year, which we call Christmas. This is the mystic birth of a cosmic Life Impulse which impregnates and fertilizes the earth. It is the basis of all terrestrial life. Without it no seed would germinate, no flower would appear upon the face of the earth, neither man nor beast could exist, and life would soon become extinct. Therefore, there is a very, very valid reason for the joy that is felt at Christmas time. As the divine Author of our being, our Father in heaven, has given the greatest of all gifts to man, the Son, so men also are impelled to give gifts to one another. There reigns upon earth, joy, good will, and peace, no matter whether man understands the mystic and annually recurrent reasons therefor.

As "a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump," so this spiritual life impulse which impregnated the earth at the winter solstice works its way through the winter months, towards the circumference, giving life to all wherewith it comes in contact. Even the minerals would not grow were this light impulse withheld, and by the time Easter is reached, when the earth is in bloom, when the birds start singing, and the animals in the forest are mating, all is imbued with great Divine Life. It has spent itself, it dies, and is raised again to the right hand of our Father. Thus Christmas and Easter are turning points which mark the ebb and flow of the Divine Life annually given for our sakes, without which it would be impossible for us to live upon the earth. The latter ends also the annual recurrence of the festive feeling which we experience from Christmas to Easter, the joy that thrills our being. If we are at all sensitive, we cannot help but feel Christmas and Easter in the air, for they are laden with divine love, life, and joy.

But whence come the note of sorrow and suffering which precedes the Easter resurrection? Why may we not rejoice with an unmingled joy at the time when the Sun is liberated and returns to His Father? Why this Passion, this Crown of Thorns? Why cannot this be left out of consideration?

To understand this mystery it is necessary to view the matter from the Christ viewpoint, and it is necessary to realize fully and thoroughly that this annual life wave which is projected into our planet is not simply a force devoid of consciousness. It carries with itself the full consciousness of the Cosmic Christ. It is absolutely a true fact that without Him was not anything made that was made, as we are told by St. John in the opening chapter of his Gospel. At the time of the Immaculate Conception in September, this great life impulse commences Its descent upon our earth, and by the time of the winter solstice, when the mystic birth takes place, the Cosmic Christ has fully concentrated itself upon and within this planet. You will realize that it must cause much discomfort to such a great Spirit to be cramped within this little earth of ours and to be conscious of all the hate and discord we are sending out from day to day all through the year. It is a fact that cannot be gainsaid that all life expression is through and by love, and similarly, death comes through hate. Were the hate and discord which we generate in our daily lives in our transactions with one another, the deceit, the infamy, and the selfishness, left without antidote, this earth would be swallowed up in death.

You remember the description of initiation given in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception. It is there stated that at the Service held every night at midnight, the etheric Temple in Germany is the focus of all the thoughts of hate and disturbance in the Western world which it serves, that these thoughts are there disintegrated and transmuted, and that this is the basis of social progress in the world. It is also known that saintly Spirits grieve and suffer greatly at disturbances in the world, at the discord and the hate, that they send out from themselves individually thoughts of love and kindness. The associated efforts of such orders as that of the Rosicrucians are directed in the same channels of effort when the world is still, so far as physical exertions are concerned, and is therefore more receptive to the spiritual influence, namely, midnight. At that time they endeavor to attract and transmute these thought arrows of hate and discord, suffering thus their small share while trying to lift a few of the thorns from the Savior's crown.

Considering the foregoing, you will understand that the Christ Spirit in the earth is, as St. Paul says, actually groaning and travailing, waiting for the day of liberation. Thus He gathers all the darts of hate and anger. These are the crown of thorns.

In everything that lives, the vital body radiates streamers of light from the force that has spent itself in building the dense body. During health they carry away all poison from the body and keep it clean. Similar conditions prevail in the vital body of the earth which is the vehicle of Christ. The poisonous an destructive forces generated by our passions are carried away by the life forces of the Christ, but every evil thought or act brings Him its own proportion of pain, and therefore becomes a part of the Crown of Thorns — the crown because the head is always thought of as the seat of consciousness. We should realize that every single evil act of ours reacts upon the Christ in the manner stated and adds another thorn of suffering.

In view of the foregoing we can realize with what relief He speaks the final words at the time of liberation from the earthly cross: "Consummatum est." Why the annual recurrence of suffering, you ask? As we take into our bodies continually the life giving oxygen to go through its cycle to vitalize and energize the whole body, as that oxygen dies to the outside world for the time being, while it is living in the body, as it is charged there with poisons and waste products, and finally exhaled as carbon dioxide, as poisonous gas, so it is necessary for the Savior annually to enter into the great body which we call the earth and take upon Himself all the poison that is generated by ourselves, to cleanse and purify, and to give it a new lease of life before He finally is resurrected and rises to His Father.

Meeting the Lord in the Air

Question: What is meant by the elect being caught up in the air to meet the Lord? Does that refer to a physical uprising?

Answer: this passage occurs in First Thessalonians, 4:17, and in the fifth Chapter of the same Epistle, 23rd verse we find it stated:

"And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly, and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Thus Paul recognizes that man is a composite being consisting of three parts, the Spirit, the soul, and the body. If you will now turn to the fifteenth Chapter of First Corinthians you will find there that he says, "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God." Speaking to them further concerning the same mystery, he says: "Behold! I shew you a mystery. We shall not all sleep but we shall be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye," and in the forty-fourth verse which has been mistranslated, he tells them that there is a spiritual body and a soul body; soma psuchicon.

This is a very important point. You will find it nowhere but in the Rosicrucian literature. All others have passed over or overlooked this important mistranslation, and read the text as a "natural" body instead of a "soul" body. This soul body is composed of ether and capable of levitation. Without this faculty it would be impossible for us to meet the Lord in the air, or to become a citizen of the kingdom of the heavens preached by Christ Jesus and His apostles. Let it be thoroughly understood that mankind has always traveled outward from the center of the earth in its evolution. Adam, the primitive man, was made of the red (hot) earth, for at that time our globe was still in a cooling condition, aglow with the red fires of the forming crust. Next we are told that a mist went up from the cooling planet, and mankind at that time lived as "children of the mist" in the valleys of the earth.

Later when the mist condensed into water, and falling, filled the earth's basins, man moved to the highlands, his present abode, above the waters, and when he had dropped the dense earthy fleshy body, which Paul says cannot inherit the kingdom of God, he will ascend into the air in the glorious soma psuchicon, or soul body, to take up a new phase of evolution. There we shall not deal with concrete things in the same sense as we do now, but we shall learn to work with life instead of with dead things. Thus the Bible says exactly what it means when it tells us we are to be caught up in the air, in the twinkling of an eye, so that we may be fit inhabitants of the new Jerusalem when that "comes out of the heavens," or becomes visible. It should also be understood that this kingdom is now being prepared, though it is invisible to most people. It is nevertheless in course of construction, waiting for the time when we shall have learned the lessons of concrete existence and fitted ourselves for the discrete occupations which we shall then learn.

Meeting The Christ in the Air

Question: If a few advanced Egos will meet the Christ in the air, will they return to this earth to live again as ordinary mortals?

Answer: The idea is, "I saw a new Jerusalem coming down from heaven." The new Jerusalem or New Age involves living in the air or ether as we are now living on the solid ground; that is not the Aquarian Age. They must not be confused. The New Age is a condition in which we shall live in our soul body. That is now being formed within us, and we shall not live under the same material conditions as we have now. We shall not need to take material sustenance. We shall be able to live on the substance of the air and ether, and we shall be able to live and have our being entirely in the aerial. Nor is this reserved for a few advanced Egos, for the majority of the human race will have been brought to perfection in the soul body by the time the Christ returns.

The Keys of Heaven and Hell

Question: Did Christ really give Peter the keys of heaven and hell, or what does that passage mean?

Answer: Undoubtedly, Christ gave them to Peter and to others as well, but they were not keys such as we sue to unlock doors. Yet no man can enter either place unless he has these keys. They are musical "keys," or incantations, such as are used in all esoteric orders and for all esoteric purposes. The modern Masons have something similar, for they furnish the lodge differently for each degree. They use different passwords and different grips, so that a Mason, though he may be initiated in some degrees is as effectually barred from all others as a stranger because he has not the "keys" that unlock the doors.

In the esoteric orders, like the Rosicrucians, the keynote of the incantation intoned at each degree is of a different vibratory measure from the keynote of all the other degrees, and one who has not the key and is unable to attune himself to it is halted as it were by an invisible wall of vibration which surrounds the Temple. In the substance of the lower Desire World, surrounding the earth, which constitutes hell, there is a different vibration from that which prevails in the part of our atmosphere constituting the upper Desire World and the Region of Concrete Thought. This rate of vibration again differs from the pitch of these states of matter which is inside the earth, in each of the nine subterranean strata. Therefore each of these divisions of the invisible world also requires a different keynote, which is gradually taught initiates as they progress upon the path towards Adeptship. It was the "key"-note to one or more of these various realms that was given to Peter and others by Christ, who was the Initiator in their case. The same "keys" are now given to His followers by His successors, who initiate worthy ones into the mysteries that they may serve their fellow men better in a larger sphere of endeavor. Thus music has a greater mission than simply to provide enjoyment for us. In fact, the harmony of the spheres is the basis of all evolution. Without that there could be no progress, and when once our ears have become attuned to that, we have the "key" to all advancement.

The Essence of Christianity

Question: What is the essence or particular teaching of real Christianity?

Answer: In the opening chapters of the Bible we find a commandment given to infant humanity, who had been permitted the freedom of the Garden of Eden, a state of bliss. Only one restriction was placed upon them, viz., "of the Tree of knowledge thou shalt not eat." When we analyze this command in the light of such sentences as, "Adam knew Eve and she bore Cain"; "Adam knew Eve and she bore Seth"; and Mary's question, "How shall I conceive, seeing I know not a man?" we readily understand that humanity was prohibited from indulging the passional nature. The esoteric teaching supplies us with a further knowledge that this function was exercised only at certain times of the year under the guidance of the angels, when the interplanetary lines of force were propitious, and consequently, parturition was painless.

In view of this knowledge we can also understand the so-called curse, "in pain shalt thou bear thy children," the reason being that the procreative act is undertaken at times when the planetary vibrations are not suited to this purpose. Thus sin or the transgression of cosmic law entered into the world and has caused untold trouble. To correct this the Religion of Jehovah was given to mankind. This is a religion of law, prescribing penalties for transgressions and pitting the fear of the law against the desires of the flesh. We are told that the law was a taskmaster to bring mankind to Christ. However, man rebelled against it all the time, and it required the most severe visitations to keep them anywhere near the line of moral conduct desired. Under this regime of Jehovah mankind was divided into nations which were used to punish one another for their transgressions by war and pestilence. They were also used as clubs to secure obedience, and the Old Testament closes with a promise to the battered and bleeding nations that, "the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in its wings." Then comes the Religion of Christ and the angelic message which heralded the birth, "on earth peace, and among men good will." This is in the beginning of the New Testament. At the end is a vision of the consummation, when all nations shall flock to a heavenly city where lust and passion have no place — where there is no marriage because death has ceased to make the birth of bodies necessary, where peace and true love reign, where the perfect love inculcated by the religion of Christ has cast out the fear engendered under the religion of Jehovah.

Thus the essence of the Christian teaching is that the law of sin and death may be overcome by love, which will restore immortality.

Changing Water to Wine

Question: Please tell me what Jesus meant when he said to his mother, Mary: "Woman, what have I to do with thee, mine hour is not yet come." (John 2:4).

Answer: This is another case where the Bible translators mistranslated the Greek text in a most unwarrantable manner. The remark was made on the occasion of the marriage of Cana, when Mary, the mother of Jesus, is said to have come to him saying there was no wine. Jesus then answered in the following Greek words: "It emoi kai soi gunai." Translated literally this is, "What (is that) to me and to thee, O woman? My time has not yet come." Even apart from the esoteric significance of the remark this seems very much nicer than the coarse answer attributed to Jesus in the popular version of King James. It should also be remembered that the Christ was not the son of Mary in the same sense that Jesus was, and that although He used the body of Jesus, He did not recognize physical relationship to Mary and was therefore perfectly justified in addressing her as "woman."

However, there is another and deeper significance to the whole proceeding of the marriage at Cana. It has been taught in the Rosicrucian literature that the Gospels are not histories of the life of an individual called Christ or Jesus, who was unique among mankind. Although the Jesus of the Gospels did live, the Gospels themselves are stories or formulas of initiation, and the marriage at Cana at which Christ performed His first great miracle was something far greater than a mere marriage ceremony of a man and woman in ordinary life. It was, in fact, a mystic marriage of the higher and lower self under the new order of Temple Service then inaugurated by Christ. In the Atlantean Epoch water had been used in the temples, but for the post-Atlantean Epoch wine was essential.

Different races have lived upon earth at various times, and they have been differently constituted than we are today. The first human race is symbolized in the Bible by the name Adam. They were of the earth, earthy. That is to say, they had only a mineral body, for they were formed of the mineral earth. The second race is symbolized under the name Cain. They had both a dense mineral body and also an etheric or vital body. Therefore, they were plantlike, and a plant food was given them to eat. Hence, we hear that Cain tilled the soil and planted grain. The third race also evolved a desire body, and because of this emotional and passional nature they became animal life. Therefore animal food or flesh was given them to eat, and we read that Nimrod was a mighty hunter. Lastly, the mind was added as a link between the threefold body and the threefold Spirit. The Spirit then entered the body and became indwelling, an Ego.

In order that this Ego might learn the lesson on earth it must forget for the time being its heavenly spiritual origin To this end a new food was given it, and wine, a spirit fermented outside the body was first used by Noah, the Atlantean Hierarch, to deaden the true Spirit dwelling in the body. Under the intoxicating influence of this pseudo spirit man gradually forgot his divine origin and focused his whole attention upon the lessons to be learned in this world. However, although humanity indulged in this new article of nutrition, wine, despite even the orgies that were held in exoteric services, the sanctuaries of all the ancient dispensations were served by water, and the highest and the holiest of their priests never allowed wine to pass their lips. Hence they were not blind leaders of the blind, but saw clearly the invisible world and knew the sacred mystery of life.

During the earlier Epochs of man's evolution he had been guided by the visible messengers of the Divine Hierarchies whom he revered as God, and even after they left him prophets and seers continued in his midst, to testify to the reality of God and the invisible realms. The ancient religions also taught the doctrine of rebirth, and thus man knew that he progressed by the experience gained in a series of earthly bodies of gradually improving texture. For that reason many Hindus, who believe in rebirth, feel that there is no need of haste in evolution. However, in order that man in the Western World, where the pioneer races dwell, might apply himself with his whole soul and his whole mind to mastering the secrets of earth life, it was designed that he should be entirely deprived of this teaching. Also, the spiritual adviser was blinded for the time being to the conscious knowledge of God and the vision of the inner worlds, so that all mankind would be left to stand upon its own feet during the new dispensation, and would consequently apply themselves altogether to the material evolution in store for them. Wine wrought this in the world exoterically from the beginning, and its use was sanctioned in the temple by the first miracle.

Under the ancient dispensation water alone was used in the Temple Service, but in time wine became a factor in human evolution. A god of wine, Bacchus, was worshiped, and orgies of the wildest nature were held in order to drown the aspirations of the Spirit so that it might apply itself to conquer the physical world. Even under the Mosaic Dispensation the priests had been strictly forbidden to use wine while officiating in the temple, but Christ on His first public appearance changed water to wine, ratifying its use in the order of things then existent. Note, however, that this was done in public, and that it was His first act as a public minister. However, at the last esoteric session of the Christ with His disciples, where the new covenant was given, there was no flesh of a lamb (Aries), as required under the Mosaic Order. Neither was there the wine, but only the bread, a vegetable product and the cup of which we shall presently speak, when we have noted His words at the time: "I will no more drink of the fruit of the vine until I drink it new with you in the Kingdom of Heaven." The newly extracted juice of the grape does not contain a spirit of fermentation and decay, but is a pure nutritious plant food. Thus the followers of the esoteric doctrine have been instructed by Christ to use a non-flesh, non-alcoholic diet.

It has generally been supposed that the cup used by Christ at the Last Supper contained wine, though as a matter of fact, there is no Biblical foundation for that supposition. Three accounts are given of the preparation for this Passover. While Mark and Luke state that the messengers were told to go into a certain city and look for a man who carried a pitcher of water, none of the Evangelists say that the cup contained wine. Furthermore, research in the Memory of Nature shows water was used, and that so far as the esotericist was concerned wine has had its day. From that act dates also the inauguration of the temperance movement, for these cosmic changes involve long preparation in the inner worlds before they become manifest in society outwardly. Thousands of years are as nothing in such processes.

The use of water at the Last Supper also harmonizes with the astrological and ethical requirements. The Sun was leaving Aries, the sign of the Lamb, for Pisces, the sign of the Fishes, a watery sign. A new note of aspiration was to be sounded, a new phase of human upliftment was to be entered upon during the Piscean Age then approaching. Self-indulgence was to be superseded by self-denial. Bread, the staff of life, which is made from immaculately generated grain, does not feed the passions like flesh; neither does our blood when diluted with water surge so passionately as when wine is imbibed. Therefore, bread and water are fit foods and symbols of ideals during the Pisces-Virgo Age. They represent purity, and the Catholic church has given to its followers the Piscean water at the door of the temple, and the Virginal Bread at the altar, denying them the wine cup at the Service. However, even the foregoing consideration does not bring us to the heart of the mystery hidden in the "Cup of the New Covenant."

The old wine-cup given to us when humanity entered the post-Atlantean Earth, the land of generation, was filled with destruction, death, and poison, and the word which we then learned to speak is dead and powerless.

The new wine cup mentioned as an ideal for the future epoch, The New Galilee (which is not to be confused with the Aquarian Age), is an etheric organ built within the head and the throat by the unspent sex force, which to the spiritual sight appears as the stem of a flower ascending from the lower part of the trunk. This calix, or seed cup, is truly a creative organ, capable of speaking the word of life and power.

The present word is generated by clumsy muscular motion which adjusts the larynx, tongue, and lips, so that the air passing from the lungs makes certain sounds, but air is a heavy medium, difficult to move in comparison with Nature's finer forces like electricity which move in the ether. When this new organ has been evolved it will have the power to speak the word of life, to infuse vitality in substances that were hitherto inert. This organ we are now building by service.

You will remember that Christ gave not the cup to the multitude, but to His disciples who were His messengers and servants of the Cross. At the present time those who drink from the cup of self-abnegation that they may use their force in the service of others, are building that organ, together with the soul body which is the wedding garment. They are learning to use it in a small way as Invisible Helpers when they are out of their body at night, for then they are taught to speak the word of power which removes disease and builds in healthy tissues.

When the Atlantean Age was drawing to a close and mankind left its childhood home where it had been under the direct guidance of the divine teachers, the old covenant was made, giving them flesh and wine, and these two, together with the unrestrained use of the sex force, has made the post-Atlantean Age an age of death and destruction. We are now drawing to the end of that era.

The Piscean Age, or the time when the Sun by precession goes through the sign Pisces, the fishes, is nearly spent. During that period the sign opposite from Pisces, the Fishes, namely the Celestial Virgin, has been the ideal of man. She has been worshiped by a celibate priesthood who enjoined the eating of "fishes" upon their charges, at certain times of the week and the year. In the Pictorial Zodiac the sign Virgo has a wheat ear in one hand. Both the grain and the grape are products of the vegetable kingdom, and the immaculate Celestial Virgin therefore embodied the first principle of the Immaculate Conception, the blood (wine) and the body (bread) of the Christ. To these things the celibate priesthood, which directed the worship, have called attention during the Piscean Age, which is now soon spent, and the wine is therefore fast being abolished from the temple service and from the use of the masses, with the result that a corresponding measure of sensitiveness is being experienced. The divine Spirit hidden within each human being has awakened from its toxic sleep induced by the spirit of wine, and is beginning to remember its divine origin and heritage of life, without beginning and without end.

It is noteworthy in this connection that all the clergy of the various countries in the old world, and the Catholic priests in America as well, still continue to use wine and liquors as a daily beverage, and it is more than significant that when the Parliament of England, the king and the nobles, who represent the State Craft, endeavored to pass laws looking toward prohibition of the sale of liquor in England, the measure fell flat on account of the determined opposition of the highest dignitaries of the church.

This attitude of the European clergy does not imply, however, that they are degraded, nor to be censured in any respect whatever. Humanity has still many lessons to learn which can be learned only in the age of wine. When the need of the counterfeit spirit has passed it will get into disuse without need of legislative measures, which generally do not good, for it is absolutely impossible to legislate morality into people. Until the consent to a law is given from within, they are bound to break it to secure the gratification of their desires, regardless of restrictive measures.

Was Temptation Necessary for Christ Jesus?

Question: Why was it necessary for Christ to enter the body of Jesus and be tempted in order to have compassion for us? Could not such a great being have compassion without that?

Answer: Evidently not. Temptation to be temptation requires that the person tempted see something desirable in the object which is to tempt him. Lacking this there can be no temptation. Meat cannot tempt the writer, for even the thought of eating it is nauseating. Therefore, there is no virtue in abstaining. He does not have to overcome the desire for flesh, but would have to overcome his disgust in order to eat it. The great Sun Spirit, Christ, in His own nature could have felt no temptation to turn stones to bread in order to still hunger. He would not have felt it as a sacrifice to refuse allegiance to a power that would place Him as a sovereign over our little earth, but just as we, when we look through a colored glass see everything tinted with that hue, so also when the Christ-consciousness was focused in Jesus' body it perceived the things of this world through the eyes of Jesus, a human being. From the viewpoint of such an one, bread seemed eminently desirable when hunger was felt. Hence it constitute a temptation.

Power also seems desirable to the majority of mankind. Hence the knowledge that by power within Himself He could gratify this desire would constitute a temptation. Only from the human viewpoint of Jesus could Gethsemane have seemed so terrible that He wanted to avoid the ordeal before Him. We may judge on the principle that no one knows where the shoe pinches as well as the one it is on, that the Christ Spirit learned through the bodily limitations of Jesus to have compassion for our frailties in a manner which could not have been equaled by observation from without. Having once worn a body and felt the frailty of the flesh, He knows better how to help us than anyone else and is therefore rightly the Supreme Mediator between God and man.

Reason For Calling Christ "The Son of Man"

Question: If Christ was divine and an archangel, the highest initiate of the Sun Period, as you say, why then was he called "The Son of Man"?

Answer: To understand properly this title: "The Son of Man," it is necessary to know the Masonic legend of the creation of the world and man upon it, as well as the Biblical story. As not all present students have read the lessons on Freemasonry And Catholicism, we will repeat this legend, or rather the more salient features of it.

In the beginning the Elohim Jehovah, created Eve, and the Elohim Samael, who is the ambassador of Mars to this earth, united with her. Cain was the offspring of this union. Afterward the Elohim Jehovah, also created Adam, and Adam united with Eve, with the result that Abel was born. Thus Abel was the son of human parents, both of them creatures of Jehovah, and he was docile, amenable to the commands of the God who was regarded as his Creator; whereas, Cain was the semi-divine father. On that account he had the inherent divine urge to create. Abel was therefore content to tend the flocks, also created by Jehovah, which, like himself, fed upon the plant food that grew wild without effort on his part, a gift of the gods. Cain was different. In him that dominant desire to create something new, that divine urge to make two blades of grass grow where formerly there was one, was a dominant, compelling power, and he could not be satisfied until he had achieved something by his own initiative. He therefore planted the seeds which he found, caused grain to grow, and offered to Jehovah the work of his hands.

However, his offerings were not pleasing to the God Jehovah, who saw in him a possible rival — one not to be entirely domineered. As a consequence there was war between Cain and Abel, and their blood was shed. Then Adam again united with Eve, and from this union Seth was born. Since then there has always been in the world two classes of people: The Sons of Cain and the Sons of Seth. From one was born the long line of kings, which held their office "by the Grace of God," and which culminated in Solomon. This line is the son of men. That is to say, they were born of a human father and a human mother; namely, Adam and Eve, both created by God and amenable to his dictates — both of them thoroughly and entirely human. In this respect the Sons of Seth differ radically, very radically from the Sons of Cain. Cain was virtually the Son of a Widow, because Eve had been left by her divine husband, Samael, at the moment fertilization was accomplished. He had never taken the part of a husband or a father, therefore, his offspring was as said, the son of a widow.

From this semi-divine progeny, Cain, there has descended a long line of sons who have originated all the industries, as you will see by consulting the Bible. They invented all the arts and all the sciences. To them all the material progress of the world has been due, and their line culminated at the time when Solomon, the son of man, sat upon the throne of Israel, in the birth of a son of a widow, called Hiram Abiff, which you will also find chronicled in the Bible. I do not mean Hiram of Tyre, but Hiram, the master workman, who was sent by King Hiram of Tyre to build the Temple of Solomon. He, then, was "the widow's son," and Solomon was the "son of man." At a later time both of these characters in the world drama were reborn. Solomon became Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of Man; Hiram Abiff became Lazarus. He was also the Widow's Son of Nain, and the two resurrections recorded are one event, referring to Initiation.

Since then these two characters, the Son of Man and the Son of a Widow, have worked for the same ends, but in different spheres. Jesus, the Son of man, has worked among the churches, and is doing so still. Christian Rosenkreuz is the later name of Hiram Abiff and Lazarus, the Son of a Widow. Jesus, the Son of Man, stands as the genius and protector of all church craft, whereby religion is fostered and man is brought back to God along the heart path of devotion. Christian Rosenkreuz, the Son of the Widow, works with the world powers, the industries, and science, in order to bring about the union of the temporal and spiritual power, the head and the heart, which must take place before Christ, the Son of God, can come again.

By the way, about this union, I said in the Cosmo that the second coming of Christ would take place at a time when the State and the Church had been united, but that was not exactly a happy expression to use. You will remember that the teachings were given to me in German, and in such volume that it was very difficult to find the proper English expression for everything right off. I therefore occasionally translated too literally. The words state and church, as used by the Teacher, were meant to convey the idea that at some time the temporal and ecclesiastical power must work hand in hand and become more and more united; for at the time toward which we are looking, the Kingdom of Christ, there shall be only one ruler. He will then be both King and Priest, and therefore, naturally, the human race must be educated to such a point where their human rulers approach that ideal more and more, being wise enough to rule a state, and good enough to guide the hearts of men. Thus and thus alone can we approach the Kingdom of God, and that therefore, is the condition which Christian Rosenkreuz and Jesus are now endeavoring to bring about in the church and state.

The Son of Man

Question: Why was Jesus called "The Son of Man"?

Answer: He was not really called that; he called himself that. "Who do people say that I the Son of Man am?" He was called the Son of Man in the respect that He had the human body, but there is a hidden reference there to the sign Aquarius which we are soon to enter. Then the Son of Man shall come again. There was a time when humanity worshiped the Bull, at the time when the Sun by precession went through the sign of the Bull — Taurus. Every year the Sun comes northward and about the 21st of march it reaches the equator. That is then called the first degree of Aries. Then it goes around the circle, at the next 21st of March coming again to the equator, but it comes a little bit earlier — it precedes. The vernal equinox, when the Sun passes the equator, will be a little previous to the first of Aries of last year, and so by precession it goes all around the signs. When it went through the sign of the Bull as said, people worshiped the Bull. Then it went into the sign of Aries and it became a deadly sin to worship the golden calf. God called to His people: "Come out of Egypt. Do not worship the Bull, but by the blood of the Lamb shall you pass over." Therefore, the door posts were sprinkled with the blood of the lamb and they passed over the blood of the Lamb.

Then Christ was born, and He tells those that He wants to be His disciples, "Come away from that place where they worship the lamb. I am going to have you fishers of men." He thus prepared for this age when the Sun goes through the sign of the fishes, which it has been transiting the last 2,000 years. During these 2,000 years we have been eating fish on Fridays, during the season of Lent, etc. Just after the time of Christ there was a great controversy: Should His symbol be a lamb or should it be a fish? Hence we see the bishop wears a miter on his head and the form of a fish's head. Thus the Savior is indicated by the sign the Sun goes through by precession. It is now coming close to the cusp of Aquarius, the great intellectual sign. It is soon leaving the devotional sign Pisces where people have lived by blind faith. We are nearing Aquarius and we are beginning to feel its influence, the great intellectual sign of the Son of Man. If we read our Bible right and without preconceived opinions, we shall find that the first miracle He did was to change water to wine at the marriage of Cana. However, when He had come to the end of His ministry He abrogated the old covenant, by sending His disciples to a place where He would eat the passover. He said to them:

"Go into that city and walk around until you find a man bearing a pitcher of water (that is the symbol of Aquarius); follow him wherever he goes; in that house (the house of Aquarius) will I eat the pass over." They did as He told them, and He went there and broke the bread and gave thanks. He passed the cup and said, "Take, drink, this is the sacrament of the new covenant, I will no more drink to the fruit of the vine." There is the point. He told them to look for a man with a pitcher of water — the sign of Aquarius. There is only one sign in the whole zodiac that is a man, and Aquarius sits there with the urn pouring out the water. Christ Jesus called Himself the Son of Man because He brought the religion of the Aquarian Age.

Did Christ Jesus Eat After the Resurrection?

Question: In the 24th chapter of Luke it is stated that after the resurrection, Christ appeared to his disciples, saying "handle me"; also that He ate. How is this possible when he appeared in the vital body?

Answer: The answer to this question involves an understanding of the principles of materialization. When a materializing medium is used by Spirits for the purpose of showing themselves to an audience, they first extract the vital body, or as much thereof as they dare, from the medium, leaving the dense body in the cabinet in a fearful shrunken state. That is dreadful for people unused to such phenomena to see. With this vital body — which, by the way, has been photographed by scientists, as the camera will register rays that are invisible to the eye — they produce the desired phenomena readily, because it is a living thing and attracts matter greedily so long a it has not collapsed in the manner that it does shortly after death. They interpolate physical atoms of the surrounding atmosphere after making a matrix (mold) of the vital body of the medium, and thereby shape a body into any form that suits the Spirit materializing to take upon itself.

The vital body of a medium may be used by any number of Spirits during a seance, each one clothing itself in the plastic substance and filling out with atoms from the surrounding atmosphere, even borrowing from the sitters who very often feel much exhausted upon leaving a seance room.

During accidents by drowning or asphyxiation the person feels very calm and restful after the first struggle, though he realizes his peril in a measure. The vital body is extracted before the silver cord has parted, so it retains the properties of attracting matter from the physical world. Therefore, people who died by drowning and asphyxiation, have been seen by their relatives many thousand miles away perhaps for an instant, lifelike in the extreme. An inclination or desire to be with their friends from whom they were separated had been in their minds for a long time, perhaps, and being themselves free from the fetters of the body, they are at once borne thither upon the wings of desire. Arrived in the place, the vital body attracted to itself sufficient of the particles of the atmosphere to be visible to the person visited. Then perhaps at that moment the silver cord broke, the vital body collapsed and the vision was gone.

Thus we see that it is a property of the vital body to attract to itself physical matter, and it is much easier for one who leaves the body unconsciously to allow the physical particles to flow into his soul body than to keep them away. The soul body, of course, is not subject to death, decay, or collapse. Therefore it is very easily understood that the Christ could use that vehicle to go through the walls into the room where the Disciples were gathered and there draw about Him the necessary material to show Himself in a physical vehicle which was disintegrated the moment He wanted to leave. However, it is noteworthy, that it is the disintegration that calls forth an effort and not attraction of physical matter.

Can Spirit Suffer?

Question: I find difficulty in arriving at Mr. Heindel's true meaning about Christ re-entering the Earth every Christmas, there to suffer until Easter. Can spirit suffer? Kindly explain what you mean by Christ being in the center of the Earth and that when a sufficient number of disciples have been perfected, the Christ will be freed and the disciples will then have control of the Earth. This theory would seem to involve the necessity of different hierarchies to control different planets.

Answer: This question has been considerably abbreviated, but the main points are given. The first question seems to be, "Can Spirit suffer?" This is surely very easy to answer. You know that when a person has been run over by a street car and a limb has been severed that limb will not suffer. It has been removed from the vital body and all feeling is gone. On the other hand, the MAN who has lost the limb is sure to suffer intensely, and if he is of a high-strung nervous temperament, he will stand small chance of recovering, compared with one whose sensibility is slight and who perhaps knows nerves by name only. But physical suffering is slight compared to mental anguish. Who would not rather suffer the most severe headache than the pangs of remorse for some deed done on the impulse of the moment? This is pain that Spirit can suffer, both from physical and spiritual causes.

Now, can you understand what it means, to be a free Spirit and have to draw consciously into a certain vehicle of limitation? Perhaps that is impossible for anyone who has not experienced the feeling, but we assure you that when the Invisible Helpers who retain their consciousness while out and away from the body return to re-enter it in the morning, the body which we prize so highly, which we look upon as being so precious, creates in him who views it from without a sense of the most intense disgust. He feels repugnant in having to enter that cold, clammy dead thing there on the bed, and only the very highest sense of duty can compel him to enter. As soon as he enters, that feeling leaves him, for the viewpoint has altered. Nevertheless it is there as a memory all through the day. Similarly the Cosmic Christ enters the earth annually at the winter solstice, though not in the same full sense as we enter our body. Rather it is by a projection of a part of Its consciousness, which is then imprisoned in the earth and labors for the etherealization of our planet. It suffers and feels everything that a consciousness can feel in a physical body. It feels the lack of morality as well as the physical surroundings, and therefore the lot of Christ is so much harder. Therefore, also, is our moral responsibility so much the greater, for by our conduct we are either prolonging or shortening the time when He must continue to bear our burdens and suffer for our wrong doings.

You have surely read in the Bible about the Seven Spirits before the Throne. They are the Seven Star Angels, very easily identified in symbolism. To elucidate this matter fully would take far more space than can be given here, but you will find the explanation in The Cosmo-Conception. You know Paul speaks of the Christ being born within you. Angelus Silesius also says:

"Though Christ a thousand times in Bethlehem be born,
And not within thyself, thy soul will be forlorn;
The Cross on Golgotha thou lookest to in vain,
Unless within thyself it be set up again."

This Christ-Principle we must all evolve within (ourselves); this also is the Golden Wedding Garment in which those who are "the bride" will meet their Lord when He comes. The name of the garment is soma psuchicon, in 1st Corinthians, 15:44. The English translation rends it "natural" body, words which should be taken out and translated "soul" body. It is said that we shall meet the (our) Lord in the air (etherealized earth). Truly, flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God, but when we have the soul body which is made of ether, we can meet Christ in the air. We can also support the earth in its orbit, for that requires only a sufficiently buoyant ethereal body, which is now supplied by our Lord, and must be until we can take His place.

Whereabouts of the Desire Body of Jesus

Question: What became of the dense body of Jesus which was placed in the tomb, but was not found easter morning? If the vital body of Jesus is preserved to be used again by Christ, what does Jesus do in the meantime for a vital body? Why would it not have been more practical to have obtained a new vital body for Christ at the Second Coming?

Answer: Study of the Scriptures will reveal the fact that it was the custom of Christ to draw apart from His disciples, an they knew not whither He went — or if they did, no mention has been made. However, the reason was that, being so glorious a Spirit, His vibrations were too high for even the best and purest of physical vehicles. It was therefore necessary to leave it frequently for a period of complete rest so that the atoms might be slowed down to their customary pitch. Consequently the Christ was wont to go to the Essenes and leave the body in their care. They were experts, and the Christ knew nothing about handling such vehicles as He had received from Jesus. Had not this rest and care been given, the dense body of Jesus would have disintegrated long before the three years' ministry was ended, and Golgotha would never have been reached.

When the time was ripe, and the earthly ministry was ended, the Essenes ceased to interfere. Then things took their natural course, and the tremendous vibratory force imparted to the atoms scattered them to the four winds, with the result that when the grave was opened a few days later no trace of the body was found.

This is in perfect harmony with natural laws known to us by their operation in the physical world. Electric currents of low potential burn and kill, while a voltage of many times the strength passes through the body without harmful effect. Light, which has tremendous vibratory rate, is pleasant and beneficial to the body, but when focused through a lens the vibratory rate is lowered and we have force which destroys. Likewise, when Christ, the great Sun Spirit, came into the dense body of Jesus, the vibratory rate, being lowered by the resistance of the dense matter, must burn up the body, as in cremation, if not interfered with. The force was the same, the result identical — save that as it was true, invisible fire which burned up the body of Jesus, and not fire clothed in flame, as in ordinary manifestation of fire, there were no ashes. In this connection it is well to remember that fire sleeps invisibly in everything. We do not see it in the plant or the animal, nor in the stone, yet it is there, visible to the inner vision and capable of manifesting at any time when it takes a garment of flame from physical substance.

Considering that the author of The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception had practically no help when proof reading, it is cause for congratulation that no more mistakes were noticed. In this work is a mistake which has a bearing on the present subject. It has been corrected in the 4th edition, where the words "seed atoms" have been substituted for "other vehicles." These sentence then reads: "Upon the death of the dense body of Jesus, the seed atoms were returned to the original owner." During the three years' interval between the Baptism, where he gave up his vehicles, and the Crucifixion, which brought the return of the seed atoms, Jesus gathered a vehicle of ether, as an Invisible Helper gathers physical matter whenever it is necessary to materialize all or part of the body. However, material not matched with the seed atom cannot be permanently appropriated. It disintegrates as soon as the will power assembled in it is withdrawn, and this was, therefore, only a makeshift. When the seed atom of the vital body was returned, a new body was formed, and in that vehicle Jesus has been functioning since, working with the churches. He has never taken a dense body since, though perfectly able to do so. This is presumably because his work is entirely unconnected with material things, and differs diametrically from the work of Christian Rosenkreuz which has been with state, industrial, and political problems. The latter therefore needed a physical body in which to appear before the public.

The reason why the vital body of Jesus is preserved for the Second Coming of Christ, instead of a new vehicle being provided, is given in Faust which is a myth, setting forth in pictorial terms great spiritual truth of inestimable value to the seeking soul. Faust, by endeavoring to obtain spiritual power before he has earned it attracts a Spirit ready to pander to his desire — for a consideration, for unselfishness is a virtue singularly lacking in such. When Lucifer turns to leave, he is dismayed to see a pentagram before the door, its one point turned toward him. He asks Faust to remove the symbol so that he may withdraw, and the latter inquires why he does not go out through the window or chimney. Lucifer then reluctantly admits that, "For ghosts and Spirits it is the law, that where we enter we must withdraw."

When in the natural course of events, the Spirit comes to birth, it enters its dense body by way of the head, bringing with it the higher vehicles. On leaving the body at night, it leaves the same way, to re-enter in the morning in like manner. The Invisible Helper also withdraws and re-enters his body by way of the head, and when at length our life on earth has been lived we soar out of the body for the last time by way of the head, which is thus seen to be the natural gateway of the body. Therefore the pentagram with one point up is the symbol of white magic which works in harmony with the law of progression.

The black magician who works against nature subverts the life force and turns it downward through the lower organs. The gate of the head is closed to him, but he withdraws by way of the feet, the silver cord protruding through the lower organs. Therefore, it was easy for Lucifer to enter the study of Faust, for the pentagram turned with two horns toward him represented the symbol of black magic. However, on trying to leave he finds the one point facing him, and cringes before the sign of white magic. He can leave only by the door because he entered that way, and thus he is caught when he finds that the way is blocked. Similarly Christ was free to choose His vehicle of entrance into the earth where He is now confined, but once having chosen the vehicle of Jesus, he is bound to leave by the same way. Were that vehicle destroyed, Christ must remain in the cramping surroundings till Chaos dissolves the earth. This would be a great calamity, and therefore, the vehicle He once used is most jealously guarded by the Elder Brothers.

In the meantime Jesus has been the loser of all the soul growth accomplished during his thirty years on earth prior to the Baptism and contained in the vehicle given the Christ. This was and is a great sacrifice made for us, but like all good deeds, it will rebound to a greater glory in the future. This vehicle will be used by Christ when He comes to establish and perfect the Kingdom of God, and it will be so spiritualized and glorified that when it is again restored to Jesus at the time when Christ turns the Kingdom over to the Father it will be the most wonderful of all human vehicles. Although it has not been taught, the writer believes that Jesus will be the highest fruitage of the Earth Period on that account, and that Christian Rosenkreuz will come next. "Greater love hath no man than that he lay down his life," and giving not only the dense body but also the vital body, and for so long a time, is surely the ultimate of sacrifice.

Disintegration of Jesus' Body

Question: I am very grateful for the answers about the body of Jesus and its real relation to Christ, but am still in the dark as to how the body of Jesus could be scattered by the vibratory forces of the Christ spirit after that had left; also how the atoms could pass out of the tomb when that was sealed.

Answer: It is one of our illusions that the body which we inhabit is alive. As a matter of fact it is nothing of the sort. At least there is such a very small portion of this body which can really be said to be alive that our statement is practically true. The larger portion is absolutely asleep if not entirely dead. That is a fact well-known to science, and something that reason must teach us is so. That is because our spiritual power is so weak that it cannot furnish this vehicle with life to a sufficient extent. In the measure that we fail thus to vitalize the body, it seems like a heavy clod of clay, which we must laboriously drag along with us, until after a few years it crystallizes to such an extent that it is impossible for us any longer to keep up the vibratory action. Then we are forced to leave the body and it is said to die. A slow process of disintegration takes place to restore the atoms to their original free state.

Contrast now that state of affairs when one of these same earth bodies is taken possession of by a powerful Spirit like that of Christ. You will find an analogy in the case of a man being resuscitated from drowning. There the vital body has been extracted, and the vibratory action of the physical atoms has ceased almost, if not altogether. Then when the vital body is again caused to permeate the physical body, it begins to prod every atom into action and vibration. This attempt to awaken the sleeping atoms causes the intensely disagreeable prickling sensation which persons who have been resuscitated from drowning describe, and this sensation does not cease until the physical atoms have attained a rate of vibration one octave below that of the vital body. Then they are insensate and nothing is felt save as we ordinarily feel.

Take now the case of Christ entering the dense body of Jesus. There the atoms were moving at a speed much lower than the vibratory forces of the Christ Spirit. Consequently the acceleration had to take place, and during the three years' ministry this marked acceleration of the vibration of these atoms would have shattered the body had not the powerful will of the Master assisted by the skill of the Essenes held it together. Had the atoms been asleep at the time when the Christ left the body of Jesus, the same as our atoms are asleep when we leave our bodies, a long process of purification would have been required to disintegrate the body. They were, however, as we said, highly sensitized and alive, and therefore it was impossible to keep them in bondage when the Spirit had fled. In future ages when we learn to keep our bodies alive we shall not change atoms and, therefore, bodies so often. Nor when we do, will it take so long as at present to complete the process of purification. The tomb was not hermetically sealed, and would not offer obstruction to the passage of atoms.

Loss of Experience By Jesus

Question: Why should Jesus lose the experience of his thirty years previous to his giving up his vehicles, since he occupied these vehicles and the seed atoms were returned to him after the Christ had finished using them?

Answer: This question grows out of previous statements that when Jesus left his vehicle in charge of the Christ, he thereby lost the experience of the thirty years which he had lived, and that is true. The experiences are really indented upon the seed atom, and when Jesus received these seed atoms upon the death of the body on Golgotha he thereby received a record of the experience, but the vital body had received the impact from the experiences. Jesus had lived his heaven and hell day by day, as every true probationer does, and wrought the experience into the soul body which was surrendered to Christ. The soul body, the two higher ethers that had been growing during the life upon earth, including of course the three years when Christ occupied it, Jesus is still minus. That will not be returned until the Day of Liberation and the Millennium has come and gone, so that the Christ will be entirely finished with the vital body He received from Jesus. Then, of course, the soul growth that was made upon it by the Christ will fall to Jesus, drawn by the law of attraction, and therefore he will become manifold richer than he would have been if he had not thus sacrificed his body. For that reason I stated as my opinion that he would be the highest one on earth on that account.

Christ the Spirit of Our Earth

Question: Is Christ (the individual of the Sun Period) the Spirit of our Earth? As the Earth was hardly a dead mass up to 2,000 years ago, where is the previous occupant? If it is only a ray of the Cosmic Christ, which as a purifying source is working in and through the Earth, is there any other spirit whose body our Earth is? When the spirit of the Christ is released from its bondage, who will be the indwelling spirit?

Answer: The law of analogy hold good everywhere. It is the master key to all mysteries, and you will find that what applies to the microcosmic man also applies to the macrocosmic God or the Divine Power. The animals now are guided by Spirits from without. At a later period they will become indwelling spirits, and learn to guide their vehicles without assistance from any source. Similarly it was with the earth as stated in the Cosmo and various other parts of our literature. Up to 2,000 years ago Jehovah had charge and guided our earth from without as the animals are guided by the Group Spirits. thus the earth was held in its orbit by His power, and He was up to that time the Supreme God.

However, at the change made on Golgotha the Christ Spirit drew into our earth in order that He might aid us to evolve faculties which Jehovah could not give us. Jehovah gave us laws which held us in check, but the Christ gave us love. One is the restraining force, applied from without; the other is an impelling energy applied from within. Thus the Christ is now guiding the earth in its orbit from within, and will continue until we have learned to vibrate to that attribute, love, whereby we shall be able to apply the power to our own planet and thus guide it in its orbit from within.

Christ is the highest initiate of the Sun Period and as such has His dwelling place in the Sun. He is the Sustainer and Preserver of the whole solar system. In one sense it is right to speak of that which dwells within our earth as a Ray, yet it does not convey the exact idea of what is the case. Perhaps we can get at the matter by an illustration. Let us liken the great Spirit in the Sun to a refiner of metal. He has upon his furnace a number of crucibles and is watching them all. Heat is melting these metals and throwing the dross to the top. The refiner is gradually skimming the crucibles, until at last the metal is absolutely beautiful and clear and he can see his face in each. Similarly we may see the Christ turn His attention from one planet to another, and as He turns Himself to our earth, for instance, His image is reflected in the earth. It is not a dead image, however, it is a living, feeling, sentient Being, so full of life and feeling that we ourselves in our present dead state, dwelling in these bodies of earth, can have no idea of that faculty of feeling possessed by the indwelling Spirit of the earth.

Thus, for a time, His energy is imparted to this picture as a focus, and while really being in the Sun, the Cosmic Christ feels everything that is going on in the earth, as if He were actually here present. That picture within, which it must be thoroughly understood, is not a picture in the ordinary sense of the word, is a counterpart, a part of the Solar Christ, and through it he knows and feels and senses everything upon the earth as if He were actually present. I have repeated this, but it might be repeated time and time again without detriment, as it is something that should be very thoroughly understood. That is what is really meant by omnipresence. Thus while the Christ is the indwelling Spirit of the Sun, He is also the indwelling Spirit of the earth, and must continue to hold this office of helpfulness for us — feeling everything, enduring everything that goes or would go with an actual presence, for our sake.

Let us consider for a moment what that which we call the earth is — that is to say, its origin. The solidification commenced in the Sun Period, when we were unable to vibrate at the high rate demanded to remain here. Thus we gradually worked ourselves out of the Sun and were projected into space. The rate of vibration was gradually lowered until the middle of the Atlantean Epoch, and thus the earth crystallized into a mass of stone, we might say. Thus we ourselves made the earth what it was, and if no help had been given we should have been unable to extricate our selves from the meshes of matter. Jehovah from without endeavored to help us by laws. To know the law and to follow it would have in time aided us, provided we had the requisite strength. However, no man is justified by the law, and by the law all spirit must become further enmeshed. Therefore, there had to be given a new impulse which would inscribe the law into men's hearts. There is a great difference between what we do, because we must, for fear of an outside master who metes out a just retribution for every offense, and the inner urge which impels us to do right because it is right. We recognize what is right, when the law is inscribed in our hearts, and then we obey its dictates unquestionably, even though it may cause our whole being to vibrate in pain.

Thus we are collectively the Spirits of the earth. We must some day guide the vehicle we have created. Jehovah guided it from without by means of laws. However, as this was not sufficient to bring us to the point of individualization where we shall be able to take care of ourselves, Christ came in as a Savior, and is helping us until the time comes when we shall have evolved within ourselves a love nature sufficient to float the earth. So there have been no other Spirits IN the earth. The Christ is here only temporarily to help us, and in time it will be our privilege to take up the task for ourselves and guide our planet as we want and as we should. The increased vibratory force has already made the earth much less dense, much lighter, and in time it will become ethereal again as it once was. It will cease to be dead in sin (self). It will become alive in love.

The Mission of Christ

Question: If the world is a training school and we must all evolve some time, why was it necessary for Christ to die for our salvation?

Answer: If you have studied The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception, you will remember that at different periods in the development of the world there were certain stragglers who did not come up to the requirements needed to go into the next class, as it were. This is on the same principle that we see in our schools of today. In every class of children there are some who do not apply themselves as much as others, and therefore, when the time of examination comes, they are not ready to go into a higher class and must consequently be left behind. Under the regime of Jehovah egoism was instilled into early mankind to evolve humanity. In early Atlantis the Spirit had just entered the body, and all felt universal kinship as children of the great Father. However, they were designed to conquer the world and evolve individuality, and to this end they were divided into nations and families.

Having been given dominion over all things, they were encouraged to acquire possessions. Material favor, increase of children, of cattle, and of land, were given to them as rewards for obedience to the dictates of their various Race Spirits who were regarded by them as messengers of God. Contrariwise, if they transgressed and disobeyed the commandments of Jehovah, they must pay in famine, pestilence, or other material calamity. There was under the regime of Jehovah no promise of a heaven, for it was said that "even the heavens are the Lord's but the earth has he given to the children of men." Furthermore, they were told that they would be rewarded with long life to dwell in their land, if they were obedient to His commandments. Thus, by degrees egoism and self-seeking were made paramount, and the good deeds which are the basis of heaven life, where spiritual progress is made, were neglected. The more intelligent the people became the more their cunning, and covetousness were exercised to lay up treasure on earth, but never a though bestowed on the treasure in heaven, so necessary to spiritual advancement. The body also crystallized more and more by this method, and had it been pursued indefinitely, evolution would have come to a standstill. Humanity builds both the earth and their own bodies in the Second Heaven between two lives, and they would have crystallized the earth and themselves in their grasping egoism, till it would have become like the Moon.

To escape such a calamity another influence was necessary, and the seer who can read the Memory of Nature sees that ages before the actual advent of Christ His benefic influence was exercised from without. He was preparing to act as Indwelling Spirit of our planet and thereby raise the vibration so as to purify the moral atmosphere and change the motto, "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth," to "Love your enemies." Jehovah is the ruler of all the satellites in our solar system. In order to stir the backward class of Spirits which are contained on these moons, it is necessary to use the most strenuous means indefinitely, but as soon as a sufficiently enlightened stage has been reached by the people on a planet the Cosmic Christ takes them in hand to save them from the law by love. He generates in them and the planetary atmosphere the altruistic vibrations of brotherhood.

Sinking His consciousness in such low and material conditions with sufficient concentration to effect His object involves a temporary death to the higher, spiritual realms; but this is necessary, and therefore Christ must die to save the world.

Jesus After the Baptism

Question: Where was the man Jesus after the Christ took his lower vehicles? Was he present but in abeyance throughout the Christ's ministry?

Answer: Jesus was in the invisible world and has been working from there with the churches ever since.

Jesus and Christ Jesus

Question: How does the Rosicrucian teaching agree with the Bible in the following particulars: You say "saviors" and speak of Jesus as a savior, and class him with Buddha and Mohammed; the Bible says Jesus is God's Only Begotten Son (John 3:36); the Bible also says there is no other name under heaven given among men where by we must be saved (Acts 4:12); Jesus said "No man cometh to the Father but by me." (John 14:8).

Answer: If you will read the Rosicrucian Teachings carefully you will find that a distinction is made between Jesus and Christ. Jesus was a man among men. When we look in the Memory of Nature we can find his previous lives just the same as other human beings, though he is probably the grandest and most noble soul that has ever lived in a human body. Christ is the Highest Initiate of the Sun Period and had never lived in an earthly body before He took the body of Jesus at the Baptism, to teach men directly the way to the Kingdom of God. Thus both Jesus and Christ are vastly above the grand and noble world teachers such as Buddha, Mohammed, Confucius, and others.

You are right in stating that the authorized version of the Bible says that Christ is god's only begotten Son, but to understand that it is not enough to rely upon the English translation. The phrase used in the Greek is ton monogene, and it may be translated as "the Alone Begotten," the same as in plants where monogenesis takes place. That is to say, many plants have both male and female flowers and are capable of fertilizing their own seed, so that these seed will grow up into plants like the parent. We know from the Bible that man was male-female, a hermaphrodite, and he was then capable of begetting from himself another being without the cooperation of another, as is now the case, because of the division of sexes. Therefore, the idea which the Bible wishes to convey is not that the Christ was the sole and only One begotten by the Father. That may be the case, or it may not. We have no knowledge concerning this matter, but what we do know from the Bible passage is that the Christ was begotten by the Father Himself without any other intermediary — by monogenesis, the same process by which a plant possessing male and female flowers, as already said, can reproduce its kind. This does not apply to the physical body, however, for the dense garment Christ wore during His ministry among us was the body of Jesus, born in the usual way and traced back to David as the ancestor of his race by the historians of the genealogy found in the Bible.

It is also true what the Bible says, that there is no other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved, and that Jesus said, "No man cometh unto the Father but by me." However, we must also remember that both these sayings have regard to the indwelling Christ Spirit whereby the body of Jesus was informed during the years of the ministry.

Job and Rebirth

Question: How do you know the Ego is conscious after death? Please refer to Job, chapter 14:12, which reads: "So man lieth down, and riseth not; till the heavens be no more, they shall not wake, nor be raised out of their sleep."

Answer: When you are reading a book you do not take everything it contains literally, if the strain of the book is poetical. You see the absurdity of this literal interpretation of the Bible when it come to such passages which say that the trees sing or that the hills dance, for you know that as a matter of actual fact the hills do not dance nor the trees sing and laugh. You enter into the sentiment of the poet, but discount such expressions a poetical terms, not meant to be taken literally.

It is similar with other statements that are contrary to what is actually known to be the facts. When one has evolved the spiritual sight, it is a fact patent to him that consciousness does not begin with birth nor end with death. In reality the waking consciousness in the physical world which we think so paramount and important during life is really very limited when compared with the spiritual consciousness. We are more conscious before birth and after death, because we are closely in touch with the spiritual Source of our being in whom is all consciousness.

The Spiritualists and the Society for Psychic Research have done a great deal toward bringing positive evidence before the public that there is a continuance of consciousness after we pass out of this body. While there has been much fraud in these demonstrations, there has also been an overwhelming mass of truth brought out, under conditions that made deception or mistakes impossible. Messages have been received from persons who had passed out of this life and they have shown that such a state as that described in this passage from Job is absolutely not true. If you will read our lectures, "The Riddle of Life and Death," and "Where Are the Dead?" you will find the question of rebirth very thoroughly discussed.

Both biblical and historical instances, such a that of Joan of Arc, the French liberator, who was an ignorant peasant maid, but guided by the Spirit voices intelligently out-maneuvered the English generals and brought victory to the French armies, prove that those who pass out of this life are not in a state of unconsciousness and do not lose their intelligence to any degree whatever.

Besides, it is not necessary to rely on Spirits from the other side of the veil of death to communicate to us the facts of existence there. Each one of us has latent within himself or herself a sixth sense which, when cultivated, enables us consciously to penetrate that field and to see, know, and function upon that plane of life and existence together with those Spirits who have passed out of the present life. We may then talk with them, walk with them, and in all things enter into their lives, so that we may know for ourselves without depending upon anyone else that the consciousness which we have in life is augmented, if anything, by the shuffling off of this mortal coil.

It requires exercise and labor, however, to awaken that spiritual faculty an use that sense, just as it requires time, labor, and application to acquire the art of playing upon a piano or making a watch. However, everyone has the faculty latent within and may develop it if he or she so wills.

In the course of time every human being will have that faculty in addition or our present five senses. That is what is meant in Revelation when it is said that in the new heaven and the new earth there shall be no death. Job speaks of the body and the present heavens. These pass away, but Revelation speaks about a New Heaven and a new Earth where dwelleth righteousness. The last enemy that is conquered is death. When we have evolved that spiritual faculty so that it is possible for us at any moment to focus our vision upon that plane of existence where those whom we call "dead" are now living, we see them as they were before and we realize that there is in reality no death. That is the best proof.

Biblical Proof of Rebirth

Question:Can you prove from the Bible that the Ego is born and reborn till it is fit to be in God's presence?

Answer: There are some people who believe that the Bible is absolutely true, word for word, from cover to cover. Moreover, in controversy they seem to argue as though it had originally been written in English and every word meant just what is said and nothing else.

As a matter of fact, the Bible has been translated, transcribed, edited, and re-edited so many times that interpolations have, of course, crept in. Some have been inserted unintentionally, due to the fact that a copyist will make a slip with the pen occasionally. There have also been cases where interpolations were put in to support a certain doctrine in which the copyist believed and which was not clearly enunciated. Among scholars it is well recognized that only a general outline of the original teachings remains with us today.

In all religions an exoteric side was always given to the multitude. This contained the more elementary teachings, but a deeper place was given to those who had fitted themselves by their lives for understanding the deeper mysteries. We may take the counsel of Christ to His disciples: "Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of the heavens but unto these in parables," as an indication that there is a similar arrangement in the Christian religion.

Among these mysteries was the doctrine of rebirth, which you will see He must have taught from the following conversation. He asked them: "Who do men say that I , the son of man, am?" They answered and said: "Some say that you are John the Baptist, some Elijah, and some that you are Jeremiah, or one of the prophets." These personages had all died and their bodies must have decayed in the grave. Yet we find people believing that Jesus was one of them reborn. If this principle of rebirth had been wrong, it would have been His duty as a teacher to have set His disciples right, and He would probably have said: "What nonsense! How can I be one of those? They have been gone for centuries." Instead He asks, "Who do you say that I am?"

In the case of Elijah He taught this doctrine outright, for he said to His disciples concerning John the Baptist: "This is Elijah if you will receive it." There is no equivocation, but a straight forward statement: "This is Elijah." This statement was reiterated later on when they left the Mount of Transfiguration, for on that occasion Christ said to His disciples: "Elijah has come and they have done to him as they listed." Then they knew that He spoke of John the Baptist.

Nature of Jesus' Body After Death

Question: If, as you say, Jesus' body was scattered to the four winds at the time of the burial, how then did Thomas touch Jesus after death? How did he say: "Handle me and see, for a spirit has not flesh and bones as ye see me have"? Later on it is said that he ate fish and honey. Is it possible for a spirit without a fleshy body to eat and to be touched?

Answer: This question is one that occurs very often. We might refer you to the back files where it has been answered, but as so many new people come in constantly, it seems that perhaps it is better to take it up anew. As the writer never refers to back numbers himself, he will each time take up these matters from a different angle which may give new points even to those who have had them answered before, and thus the reiteration will not be without benefit.

Our latest investigations indicate that where a man spiritualizes his vehicles, the constitution of the vital body, made of ether, is most materially changed. In the ordinary man there is always a preponderance of the two lower ethers — the chemical and life ethers — which have to do with the upbuilding and propagation of the physical body, and a minimum of the light and the reflecting ethers, which are concerned with sense perception and the higher spiritual qualities. After death the body of the ordinary man is laid in the grave and the vital body hovers about two feet above the mound, gradually disintegrating. The dense body disintegrates simultaneously. However, when we say it decays, we really mean that it becomes much more alive than it was while man inhabited it, for each little molecule is now taken charge of by a separate, individual life. It begins to associate with its neighbors; the unity of an individual life is superseded by a community of many lives.

Therefore we speak of such decaying corpses as alive with worms. The denser and the more gross this vehicle is, the longer time it will require for disintegration, because the vital body hovering above has a tenacious magnetic hold that keeps the dense molecules in check. The two higher ethers vibrate at a much more rapid rate than the lower, and where a man by spiritual thoughts has massed around him a great volume of this ether, which then composes his vital body, the vibrations of the dense body also become more intense. Consequently, when the man leaves his body at death there is little or nothing of the vital body left behind to keep the components of the physical body in check. The disintegration is therefore very rapid. This we cannot easily prove because very few people are sufficiently spiritual to make the difference noticeable, but you will recall that in the Bible it is said of certain characters that they were translated. Also, that the body of Moses was so vibrant that it shone, and his body was not found, etc.

These were cases where the body was rapidly returned to the elements, and when the Christ's body was laid in the grave its disintegration took place almost instantaneously.

However, so long as the archetype of the physical body persists, it endeavors to draw to itself physical materials which it then shapes according to the form of the vital body. Thus it is difficult for the invisible Helper who passes out of his body to refrain from materializing. The moment his will to keep away from himself all physical impediments is relaxed, materials from the surrounding atmosphere attach themselves to him as iron filings are drawn to a magnet, and he becomes visible and tangible to whatever extent he desires. Thus he is enabled to do actual physical work wherever it is necessary, no matter if he be thousands of miles away from his body. On the other hand, what really brings about death is the collapse of the archetype of the dense body. Therefore the Spirits who pass away from this earth life are unable to materialize save through a medium where they extract her living vital body, drape themselves therewith and thus attract the physical substances necessary to make themselves visible to the sitters.

There is a third class, namely, the initiated Invisible Helpers who have passed out of this life. They have learned to attract or repel physical matter by their wills, as stated previously, and therefore they are able to materialize despite the fact that their archetype has collapsed.

The Christ naturally was at the head of this class and consequently able to pass through a wall in His vital body, for as the ether interpenetrates every physical molecule, so also the vital body, made of ether, may likewise pass through physical obstructions. Once in the room with His disciples, He attracted to Himself by an exercise of will sufficient physical matter to clothe Himself in a dense body. Then it was possible for His disciples to touch and handle Him as stated in the Gospels.

Respecting the eating of the fish and honey, there is a mystic significance to this which will be taken up in the Astral Ray department at a later date. You will note that fish is very, very prominent in all the Gospels. The disciples were fishermen and had miraculous drafts of fishes. Parables were told of them and people were fed with loaves and fishes. The story of Jonah and the whale and all other such narratives have an esoteric and astrological significance that will be brought out in the articles of which we speak, so we will not go into that part of the question at the present time. We will just answer the last part of your question: "Is it possible for a Spirit without a fleshly body to eat and drink?" In the lowest regions of the Desire World which interpenetrate the Etheric Region of the Physical World there are classes of Spirits of whom we hear a great deal in spiritualistic literature. They live in houses, they eat and drink. They have, in fact, all relations of life exactly as we have them here and continue very much the same manner of existence as they did when among us in the visible world. It is also possible for a materialized Spirit or for an initiate who materializes to eat and drink, but it would then be necessary to dispose of the materials taken into the body in a different method than by the ordinary process of assimilation.

The Birth of Jesus

Question: How do you reconcile the statement of the Bible that Joseph knew not Mary until she had brought forth her first-born, Jesus, who was thus conceived of the Holy Spirit, with the Rosicrucian teaching that Jesus was the son of a human father, Joseph, and Mary, his mother?

Answer: If you look at the genealogies of Jesus given in Matthew and Luke, you will find that the parentage is traced through Joseph to Adam; not one word is spoken about Mary. As we indicated in a previous answer, a copyist may have interpolated the passage to prove the materialistic sense of the Immaculate Conception.

If you take the esoteric doctrine of the Immaculate Conception no such judging is necessary. Jehovah, the Holy Spirit, the leader of the Angels, is everywhere in the Bible shown as the giver of children. His messengers came to Sarah to announce the birth of Isaac to her; to Hannah to announce the birth of Samuel; to Mary to announce the advent of Jesus, whose vehicles were later given to the Christ. The power of the Holy Spirit fructifies the human ovum as well as the kernel of grain in the earth, and the original sin occurred when Adam knew his wife contrary to the approbation of Jehovah.

That transgression brought the stain of sin upon a sacred function, but when a holy life has made pure the desires, a man becomes filled with a holy spirit and it is possible to perform the generative function without passion. Hence the conception is immaculate. The child born under such conditions is naturally superior, because the conception then is a sacred rite of self-sacrifice and not an act of self-gratification.

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Contemporary Mystic Christianity

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