|Simplified Scientific Christianity|
It is stated in the Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception that a matrix made of ether is placed in the womb of the mother which an Ego is to be reborn, and that the seed atom of the dense body comes from the spermatozoon received from the father. If this is always so should not this method produce children of one sex, with negative or positive vital body body from the mother and positive or negative dense body from the father? If not, how do you explain the difference of sex at birth?
Answer: It is also stated in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception that the vital body of a woman is positive and the vital body of a man is negative. When the agents of the Recording Angels are assisting an Ego to come to birth, the matter of sex has already been determined, either by law of alternation or a modification of that law by specific circumstances in the individual life of the Spirit, and the Ego is then helped to draw to itself a sufficient amount of the different kinds of ether as required by its development. These materials are all of certain polarity, either positive or negative. When a matrix made solely from positive etheric atoms is placed in the womb of the prospective mother, these atoms will unerringly draw to themselves negative physical atoms, and the resultant child body becomes female in consequence. If, on the other hand, the matrix which is place din the mother's womb is composed of negative etheric atoms, it will attract the positive dense atoms with the result that the male sex organ is most developed and the sex therefore masculine. Life, like electricity, requires both positive and negative expression, otherwise it cannot manifest.
If an individual has attained a high degree of of spiritual sight in this life, and then dies, to be reborn at a later period, will he remember who he was, and retain spiritual power as in the former life, or will he have to cultivate the faculty anew?
Answer: When spiritual sight has been cultivated consciously in one life it remains, so far as we know, a faculty of the Spirit in all future lives, improving in scope and power with each existence, under normal circumstances. But there is a case known to the writer where a person has possessed the spiritual sight, along with the faculty of leaving the body and remembering what happened on his soul flights outside the body, in one life, and in the next he made it impossible for himself to exercise these faculties by the use of drink, drugs, and cigarettes, which so addled his brain that it was impossible for the Spirit to impress upon it memories of what happened when it was free from the body.
Out of the body he can still rove about the world where he chooses and take his place in his Order among the other Initiates, but in the body he is hampered by his poor, sick, abused brain. Nor should it seem strange that this is so, for it is only the same principle which allows a man to enjoy spiritual sight despite the fact that he is physically blind. Apart from the loss and the lack which such a man feels there is of course the moral aspect, and it is doubtful in the writer's mind whether this person's next body will have a brain fit to carry memories from the invisible to the visible world. It is our belief that it will probably take lives of right living before he is able to build another sensitive brain which is capable of spiritual transmission.
As for the memory of past lives it is not necessary to wait till a future existence for the development of that faculty, when the spiritual sight has been cultivated, with the aid of the proper teachers, such as the Elder Brothers of the Rosicrucian Order. For the neophytes are taught from the beginning to read the Memory of Nature in order to know and differentiate between truth and delusion, first in the record that is kept in the fourth or reflecting ether, which requires only a very slight extension of the physical sight. Then by degree, if they live the life and are diligent, the extension of sight is raised to the records kept in the archetypal region. These are usually opened to them within a few years, and there they can easily investigate their own past. However, we do not believe that that is generally done, for no one goes so deeply into the work without becoming so absorbed in the system of service to others that he has no time to attend to his own selfish inclinations.
It is taught in the Philosophy that every evil act in life is expunged in the purgatorial state after death. It is also stated that death does not liquidate an injury any more than moving to another city pays a contracted debt, that ripe fate has its root in a former life and that we cannot escape from this debt of a past. How can these statements be reconciled? Surely we are not made to suffer twice for the same thing.
Answer: You are right. God does not want us even to pay back once, if by thorough repentance and reform suffering is made unnecessary. But the problem of liquidating a chain of causes in a life is much more complicated than to pay a bill for good received. There are many sides to each case. Let us take as an illustration a drunkard who makes a beast of himself and at the same times abuses his children, depriving them of the necessities of life and the education which they ought to have, who beats his wife, setting the children an example they may follow, and generally lowering their moral standard.
After death than man will feel in purgatory, first, the tortures of a craving for a drink, which he is not able to satisfy, and second, he will feel all the suffering which he inflicted upon his family. Her has then paid for his wrong doing, and it is true that he comes back to rebirth with a perfectly clean slate so far as the actual suffering which he caused them is concerned. But he took a vow to love and cherish the woman who became his wife, and by the performance of the creative act and furnishing the nucleus for a body he assumed the responsibilities of fatherhood toward the children which came to him for help and a suitable environment. These parental responsibilities he also neglected to fulfill, and there is consequently a time between him and the members of his family. He still owes them a debt of love and service which must be rendered at some future time and therefore in a later life these souls will be brought together and so placed that he may have an opportunity for doing good toward them. If he does not then take the opportunity, he may in a still later life render an adequate service to some one else. It is for his sake that service must be rendered so that the love nature may be evolved and expanded to become universal and all inclusive.
The same rule holds good in all other cases and as the extreme conditions make the best illustrations, we may take as another instance the relationship between a murderer and his victim. After death he suffered in purgatory and the actual debt is there wiped out. But a time has been established between these two Egos, and in a future life they will again meet so that the murderer may have the opportunity of serving his erstwhile victim, that they may become reconciled as friends. Fellow feeling must become universal, since it is the basic principle in the kingdom of God.
To sum up then we may say that all our debts are paid in purgatory, so far as the commission of wrong is concerned; our debts of love, friendship, and service remain for liquidation in later lives.
Does a surgeon feel in purgatory all the pains his patients have felt in the operations he has performed? This would seem unfair in cases of constructive surgery.
Answer: Certainly not. The sufferings in Purgatory are the results of moral delinquencies, and the resentment of those who are injured thereby. A surgeon who performs a constructive operation in doing a service which merits the gratitude of the person operated upon and the picture of such an operation in the panorama of life will react upon him in the First Heaven with the gratitude of the person he helped. It will make him more ambitious to serve his fellow men.
On the other hand, those unscrupulous surgeons who persuade people to have operations performed for the love of experimentation, of who take them out of charitable institutions for that purpose will certainly be as severely death with as they deserve. As for the vivisectionist's purgatory, we have seen some cases compared with which the orthodox hell with its devil and pitchfork is a place of mild amusement. Yet there are no exterior agents of outraged nature to punish such an one — only the agonies of the tortured animal contained in his life panorama reacting upon him with three- fold intensity (because the purgatorial existence is only one third the duration of the physical life). Those people do not realize in the slightest degree what they are storing up for themselves, or the torture chambers would soon be emptied and there would be one horror less in the world.
According to an article in a recent medical journal, girl babies seems to have a greater power of resistance with respect to the inimical influences which ravage the ranks of infants during the first years of life. It is stated: "Speaking generally, it may perhaps be said that the boy reacts more violently to disease than the girl, is more easily knocked over than the latter, does not recuperate as quickly when the illness takes a favorable turn, and does not offer as much resistance when suffering from chronic ailments." Can you explain this?
Answer: To the esotericist versed in the Rosicrucian Teachings concerning the polarity of the vital body the seeming anomaly is easily accounted for, with many other facts known tot he medical profession, but not explained by them.
Man, who has the positive physical body, has a negative vital body. Thus he is not able to resist disease as well as a woman, who has a negative physical body, but a positive vital vehicle. For that reason woman is able to endure a siege of sickness that would kill a man twice her weight and apparent vitality. She suffers more keenly than man, but bears pain with more fortitude. When the favorable turn comes, her positively polarized vital body seems to suck in, as with a million mouths, the solar energy. It swells and begins almost immediately to radiate the streamers so characteristics of health, with the result that the physical body recuperates space.
On the other hand, when a man has been brought very low by sickness and the turn of the tide sets in, his negatively polarized vital body is likes a sponge. It will absorb all the solar energy it can get, but the avidity noticeable in the vital body of the woman is lacking. Therefore he lingers a long while in the shadow of death, and as it is easier to give up than fight, he succumbs oftener.
There is also another reason for greater mortality among boy babies. Students of the Rosicrucian Philosophy are acquainted with the law governing infant mortality, namely, that when the Ego which passes out at death is very much disturbed by the loud and hysterical lamentations of relatives, the turmoil incident to death through railway accidents, fires, wars, and the like, it cannot concentrate its attention on the panorama of life which then passes in review, much as a picture film thrown on a screen.
This panorama should be etched into the desire body to form the basis of feelings of pain or pleasure in Purgatory and the First Heaven, the pain being transmuted to conscience to warn the Ego in future lives not to commit again the mistakes of the past. The pleasure felt on account of goods deeds in life generates virtue to spur the Ego on to better things in later lives. When the Ego is seriously disturbed in its concentration on the life panorama, the etching does not work on the feelings as it should, and thus the life experience would be lost did not the higher Powers interfere and let it die in infancy when next it comes to rebirth. The subtle vehicles are not born at the same time as the physical body. The fruits of the former life are then incorporated into them, after death in infancy, and in a few years the Ego seeks a new embodiment and lives its normal span of time on earth.
Under this arrangement an enormous number of children are predestined to die in infancy, for wars and wakes over the dead, with lamentation, have deprived millions of Egos of peace at the time of death. this present war (1916) will add more millions. Thus infant mortality must continue to grieve our hearts until we learn the science of death and how to help the passing Ego as we have learned to care for the incoming babe. We, with out small and finite minds, have already learned to use the lines of least resistance to attain our ends. We have studied the conservation of energy, and we may be sure that the great Divine Hierarchs who have charge of evolution make use of similar methods with greater efficiency. Hence, as babies must die for the reasons given, what more natural than to let as many as those predestined take a male body with a negative vital body which will more easily succumb to the rigors of physical existence?
It is not to be denied, however, that a great many deaths in infancy are due to lack of understanding of the complex constitution of a human being which includes subtler vehicles than the one seen and commonly believed to constitute the whole organism. Although the vital body of an infant is till comparatively unorganized at the time of birth, the ether which is to be used for its completion is within the aura, ready to be assimilated, and if anyone in its surroundings happens to be weak and anemic, an unconscious vampire, he or she draws from the unassimilated store of ether of the infant much more easily than from that of an adult whose vital body is fully organized. Naturally the weak person draws more easily ether that is negatively polarized, as in the body of a boy baby, than the positive ether of the girl baby. Hence also in this way the greater mortality of boy babies is to be accounted for, together with many deaths not due to the law as stated.
If this were known and believed a long step would have been taken to save infants, for precautions could then be adopted. In the first place, infants should sleep in a crib as far from the mother as she can reach, so that her aura does not mingle with that of the child. A weak mother should not nurse her child, but obtain, if possible, milk fresh and warm from healthy well fed cows, or better still, goats, for fresh milk is supercharged with the ether of the animal and has a vital energy not appreciated by the chemist who makes a merely physical analysis of its chemical constituents. And last, but not least, massage of the spleen and stimulation of the splanchnic nerves, carefully and conservatively practiced will aid the etheric counterpart of that organ in its activity of specializing the solar energy upon which the vital processes are as dependent as the lungs are on air.
It is commonly assumed that each individual soul has had a beginning, but is nevertheless so constituted that it is imperishable. This idea was questioned by one who believes that death ends all and I should like to find some argument or passages from the Bible so that I may convince him he is wrong. Will you please help me?
Answer: While there a number of ways in which it is possible to demonstrate that death does not end all, we are afraid that no amount of argument will convince one who is not willing to be shown. You remember the parable Christ told about the rich man and Lazarus who dies, and when the rich man desired that Lazarus be allowed to return from the dead to warn his brothers, Christ said: "If they will not believe Moses and the prophets, neither would they believe if one rose form the dead." And that is the point. We have heard so-called scientists say that they would not be convinced of life after death even though they actually saw a ghost, for having settled by reason and logic to their own complete satisfaction that there are no ghosts, they would consider themselves suffering from a hallucination if they were actually to see an apparition.
Neither is it possible to give you authoritative statements from the Bible. The Word "immortal" is not found in the Old Testament. Then it was said, "Dying thous shalt die," and long life was held out as a reward for obedience. Nor is the word found in the four Gospels, but in the epistles of Paul it occurs six times. In one passage he speaks of Christ having brought immortality to light through the gospel. In another he tells us that "this mortality must put on immortality." In the third passage he makes clear that this immortality is given to those who seek for it. In a fourth place he speaks of our state, "When this mortal shall have put on immortality." In a fifth place he declares that "God only has immortality," and the sixth passage is an adoration of the King Eternal, immortal and invisible. Thus the Bible does not by any means teach that the soul is immortal, but on the other hand it says emphatically, "the soul that sinneth it must die."
Were the soul inherently and intrinsically imperishable that would be an impossibility. Nor can we prove immortality from the Bible by passages as John 3:16: "God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son that whose believeth on Him should not perish but have everlasting life." If we rely upon that word to prove that the soul is without end, possessed of interminable life, we must also accept the passages which state that the souls are doomed to everlasting torment as claimed by some of the orthodox sects. But as a matter of fact these passages do not provide of unending bliss or torment. If you will take Liddel and Scott's Greek dictionary and look up the word you will find that the word translated everlasting in the Bible is a Greek word "aionian," which means for a "little while," "an age," "a little time," "a life time." You will readily see that in the case of Onesimus concerning whom Paul writes to Philemon, "for perhaps he therefore departed for a season that thou shouldst receive him forever." This word forever could only mean the few years of Onesimus' life on earth, and not infinite duration.
What then is the solution? Is immortality only a figment of the fancy and incapable of proof? By no means, but we must differentiate sharply between the soul and the Spirit. These two words are too often taken as synonymous and they are not. We have in the Bible the Hebrew word ruach, and the Greek word pneuma, both meaning Spirit, while the Hebrew word neshammah and the Greek word psuke mean soul. In addition to these we have the Hebrew word nephesh, which means breath, but has been translated life in some places and soul in others, as suited the purpose of the translators of the Bible. And that is what creates confusion. For instance, we are told in Genesis that Jehovah formed man from the dust of the earth and blew into his nostrils the breath (nephesh) and man become a breathing creature (nephese chayim), not a living soul.
Regarding death we are told in Ecclesiastes 3:19-20, also in other places, that there is no difference between the man and the animal, "as the one dieth so dieth the other, for they have all one breath," (nephesh again). Thus is indicated that man has no preeminence above the beast and all go unto one place. But there is a very definite distinction made between the spirit and the body, for we are told that "when the silver cord is loosed then shall the body return to the dust whence it was taken and the Spirit to God who gave it." The word death is nowhere connected with the Spirit, and the doctrine of the immortality of the Spirit is taught definitely at least once in the Bible: Matthew 11-14, where the Christ said concerning John the Baptist, "This is Elijah." The Spirit which had ensouled the body of Elijah was reborn as John the Baptist. It must therefore have survived bodily death and have been capable of continuity of life.
For the deeper and more definite teachings concerning this matter we must however go to the mystic teaching, and we learn from The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception that the Virgin Spirits sent out into the wilderness of the world as Light rays from the Divine Flame, which is our Father in heaven, first underwent a process of involution into matter, each ray crystallizing itself into a threefold body. Then mind was given, and became the fulcrum upon which the involution turns to evolution, and epigenesis, the divine creative ability inherent in the indwelling Spirit, is the lever by which the threefold body is spiritualized into the threefold soul and amalgamated with the threefold Spirit, soul being the extract of experience whereby the Spirit is nourished from ignorance to omniscience, from impotence to omnipotence, and thus finally becomes like its Father in heaven.
It is impossible for us with our present limited capabilities to even conceive of the magnitude of this task, but we can understand that we are a long, long, way from omniscience and omnipotence, so that this must require many lives. Therefore we go to the school of life, as the child goes to our schools here. And as there are nights of rest between the children's school days so there are nights of death between our days in Life's Schools. The child takes up its studies each day where it left off the previous afternoon. So also we, when coming to rebirth, take up the lessons of life where we left off in our previous existence.
If the questions asked why we do not remember our previous existences if we have had them, the answer is easy. We do not now remember what we did a month ago, a year, or a few years ago. How then could we expect to remember so much farther back? We had a different brain attuned to the consciousness of the previous life. Nevertheless, there are people who remember their past existences and more are cultivating the faculty every year, it being latent within each human being.
But as Paul says very properly in the fifteenth chapter of First Corinthians, "if the dead rise not, then our faith is vain and we are of all men the most miserable." Therefore the neophyte who has passed the door of initiation into the invisible world is always brought to the bedside of a dying child. He sees the Spirit pass out and is told to watch that Spirit in the invisible world until it seeks new embodiment. For this purpose a child is generally selected which is destined to seek rebirth within a year or two. Thus within a comparatively short time the neophyte sees for himself how a Spirit passed out through the portal of death and enters physical life again through the womb. Then he has the proof. Reason and faith must suffice those who are not prepared to pay the price for firsthand knowledge, which is not to be bought for gold. The price is paid in one's lifeblood.
Can we by force of will control the aspects shown in our horoscope? Have we any right thus to change the destiny brought over from our last life?
Answer: Can we by force of will control the aspects in our horoscope? that is a pretty big question, but we may say that if the aspects in one's horoscope can't be controlled, and we have to do thus and so, then we might as well lie down and take our medicine and drift along. If fate rules and we are helpless on the sea of life, what in the world would be the use of studying astrology? What would be the one factor that is not shown in the horoscope, and that is the will of man. That is what makes all the difference.
Let us suppose that two people have the same aspects coming on in their horoscopes; they may have been born close to the same time and may get horoscopes that are very much alike in some respects. They have the same sign rising and the same planets are in conjunction. Suppose they have the same afflictions coming on to one of the major planets, and one sits down and says, "I can't help it. Here it is. I have simply got to go through with it. There is no use fighting." And the other would say, "I am not going to submit. I am going to stand up in my boots and fight." The mental attitude of the latter would change events entirely for him.
That is why we never can predict with absolute certainty. In ninety-nine cases out of a hundred we can predict with certainty because most people drift with the tide, but that is just the reason for studying astrology. By means of the stellar science we know what is coming, and if we see something evil, we can say, "I know there is a certain influence coming and I am not going to submit to it." We have seen, however, so many, many cases where people are ruled by their stars in spite of all. We have told people a certain influence would come up and that they would act rashly to their great hurt if they weren't careful, and at the very moment predicted they would go and do just the very thing they have been warned against.
However, there is this great comfort: the stars impel but they cannot compel. That is the basis upon which we should work with the stars to bring out all the good of our horoscope. When we see the good aspects coming, somethings that makes for soul growth, try to work with it by all means. People are too often prone to let good aspects take care of themselves, as well as the evil. Whether we are going to take up our part, is something that can't be foretold.
Have we any right to change destiny brought over? Certainly, that is what we are supposed to do. In a former life we drifted into a certain stellar position, and we had to bring it over with us. Now we are here just for the purpose of learning to guide ourselves and rule our stars, and that is just what the science of astrology is given to us for. We must try to do the best we can with this knowledge, otherwise it may become a curse. There are people who constantly watch their horoscopes with the attitude of: "I am going to be sick and I can see death is certain," etc. If that is the way they are going to use it, it is better not to study astrology.
Is it wrong to interfere with Karma, or should we assert our divinity and rise above circumstances by affirmation of our Godhood?
Answer: A question like the above was asked Mr. Heindel at one of his recent lectures in Los Angeles, and he answered about as follows: While all great religions are God-given, there is a Western religion for the Western people as well as Hinduism for the people of India, and I can see no good reason why we should copy their terminology and force people here to learn Sanskrit when we have an excellent language of our own, with terms capable of explaining everything. To make the matter clear, we will take an instance which occurred a number of years ago. There was at that time a controversy in a certain society which makes the mistake of promulgating Eastern teachings and using their terms here in the West. The dispute was about the word "avyaktam."
Not even the Hindus are certain about the meaning of their terminology. Tons of paper and barrels of ink were used to settle the controversy and the following seems to be the definition upon which they finally compromised: "Avyaktam" is Parabraham clothed in Mulaprakriti, from which its upahhis are made during the Manvantara, and into which they are again resolved on arrival of the Arolaya." Mr. Heindel then said that he hoped the audience understood the meaning of "Avyaktam." When the audience laughed and shook their heads, the speaker expressed himself as being sorry for their lack of understanding of such a highly learned explanation, he would try the ordinary, garden variety of English and see if that would explain. "Avyaktam is Deity clothed in Cosmic Root Substance, from which its vehicles are made during the Day of Manifestation, and into which they again resolve on arrival of the Cosmic Night."
When the audience had declared they comprehended this explanation, Mr. Heindel said it is the same with the word "karma." Everybody in the U.S. and a large part of the world besides, knows what a "debt of destiny" is without explanation, and there are a number of other English words which may be used with better effect than the Hindu word karma, which is meaningless to the majority of Westerners. The speaker also held that such words as "astral" and "incarnation" were out of place because they have been conceived to mean something not warranted. He was sorry that the word "incarnation" had been used in our earliest literature, notably in the Cosmo. The Elder Brothers who gave him the teaching in German always used the word "Wiedergeburt" which means rebirth, and there is a great deal of difference between the two terms which may not appear at first sight.
It is possible for a Spirit to incarnate in an adult body by ousting the owner from his vehicle, by obsessing the body, but when we say rebirth, there is, and can be, only one meaning. In view of these facts he urges upon students never to use the term "incarnation" but always the word rebirth. Continuing he answered the question as follows: We will now take up the first part of the question, Is it wrong to interfere with destiny? And to arrive at a conclusion, let us first realize who made the destiny! WE did. We set the force going which has now ripened into destiny, and having made it, we certainly have the right to change it in so far as we are able. In fact this is the hallmark of Divinity — to rule ourselves. The very greatest majority of mankind is ruled by the heavenly orbs which may be called the "Clock of Destiny." The twelve signs of the zodiac mark the twelve hours of the day and night, the planets may be likened to the hour hand and show the year when a certain debt of destiny is ripe for expression in our lives. The Moon indicates the month, and attracts certain influences felt by us without our knowing that they are being exerted, or without our realization of what they are for.
However, these influences will tend to bring our actions in line with the destiny which we have made in previous years or previous lives, and invariably the thing which is fore-shown will come to pass.
That is it will unless we exert ourselves. Yes, there is an unless, thank God, for if it were not so, if there were no possibility of changing destiny, then we might as well sit down and say, "Let us eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die." We should then be in the hands of inexorable fate, and unable to help ourselves. But, thank God, there is one chance which is not shown in the horoscope, namely, that the human will may assert itself and frustrate Fate. You remember that beautiful little poem in the Cosmo:
It is of the utmost importance that we set the sails of the barque of our lives as we want and never scruple about interfering with fate.
This disposes also of the idea of "affirmations" as a factor in life. This in itself is folly. It is work and action that we need in life, as you will readily see by an illustration. Suppose a little seed of those beautiful carnations were endowed with speech, and it came to us saying, "I am a carnation." Would you not answer: "No, you are not a carnation, you foolish little thing. You have the potentiality in you, but you will have to go out into the garden and bury yourself for a while and grow. By that process alone can you become a carnation, never by affirmation." Similarly with ourselves. All the "affirmations" of Divinity are in vain unless accompanied by actions of a divine character. Deeds will prove our divinity as words never can.
What is it we bring back after our evolutionary journey? If spirit is perfect in the beginning, what can we add?
Answer: We are taught that in the beginning of manifestation God, the Great Spirit, differentiates within Himself (not from Himself) a number of Spirits which are as sparks from a flame, partakers of the divine nature, yet no one will contend that a spark is as good and as illuminative as the flame, though of the same substance. Before the differentiation these Spirits possessed and partook of the divine all-consciousness, omniscience, and other attributes. These divine faculties are latent in them, and the pilgrimage through matter, the evolutionary journey, is designed for the purpose of fanning these sparks into flames and unfolding the attributes which are in latency to potency, so that they may become dynamic powers, ready for use by each individual Spirit.
However, there is something more gained. When the wind blows over a new-mown hay field it absorbs and carries with itself the fragrance of the myriad of flowers. It is laden with the incense peculiar to that field. In another place, where the wind blows through a garden of roses or of orange blossom, it gathers a different scent. Similarly with the evolving Spirits. Each one, during the fanning process in the evolutionary field, gathers the aroma of its individual experience, and at the end of evolution when, as Prodigal Sons, we return to the bosom of the Father, each one of us will carry with him or her the aroma of his particular and individual experience upon the evolutionary journey. This composite essence, then, will be amalgamated with the great Divine Spirit of the Father; we shall then all be partakers of one another's experience, and the Father will be partaker of all of our experience. Thus there will be a distinct gain to all concerned, for besides having evolved our own individuality we shall learn and partake of the knowledge and experience gathered by all the other Spirits in our life wave.
Do the Rosicrucians believe in capital punishment, and if so, please state the reasons why. When a man has been executed, does he come under the law of infant mortality in his next life and die as a child the same as victims of accidents?
Answer: The Rosicrucian Teachings are never in conflict with the Christian religion, and we know that according to the doctrine of Christ the principle of retaliation, "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth," is absolutely wrong. Besides, from the esoteric standpoint there are other good and sufficient reasons why capital punishment is emphatically the worst possible manner of dealing with a dangerous man. So long as such a man is in the physical body it is easy to restrain him and put him in a place where he cannot do society any harm, but when we hang or electrocute him we actually set him at liberty in the Desire World where it is possible for him to influence others to a much greater extent than here.
Such people who are a menace to society are not slow in finding out their possibilities and taking advantage of them. They incite others who have a grievance against the community to do their work by encouraging them to wreck buildings, commit murder or rape, or perhaps gratify a personal grievance against some enemy by taking his life. Thus one murder will result in a number of other crimes by the practice of capital punishment. On the other hand, if the murderer were imprisoned for the safety of the community it is possible that during the years of his life in such an institution he would change his views. A great many of them do repent of their crimes, and then when released from the body and sent out into the Desire World at death they are no longer a menace to society and will not have an evil influence upon others.
For these reasons capital punishment is really subversive of the purpose for which it is meted out. It does not act as a deterrent to others, but actually fosters crime. Thus, even apart from the facts that the practice of retaliation is absolutely wrong, that we have no right to take a life which we cannot give, and that at times the wrong man is found guilty and executed for a crime he never committed while the real murderer goes free, capital punishment should be abolished to lessen crime.
Referring to your question as to whether a murderer who has been executed will have to die as a child in the next life, we may answer, yes. According to the law of infant mortality, anyone who dies under horrible circumstances so that he does not attend to the panorama of his life, which is reviewed just after death, does not reap the fruits of his past life. When a person is executed, the shock, the anger, and the resentment he feels — the horrors of the whole proceeding — deprive him of the peace and quiet necessary to the post-mortem work so that he will not obtain a record of the life just ended. Therefore, this lack will have to be supplied by educational work done after he has died as a child in the next life exactly on the lines we have shown in other places in our literature where the law of infant mortality is explained.
You speak of young souls. Were not all started into this Earth life at the same time, or did some come on a previous life wave?
Answer: The detailed explanation of this great question is given in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception, particularly in the section on stragglers and newcomers, but we may say briefly that the human life wave now in evolution on the earth comprises about six billion spirits. At the present time about 1,500 million are embodied, so that there are about three fourths of the human life wave in the invisible worlds. At certain periods of our development as many as 50 per cent inhabit the earth, clothed in the earthen vessel of physical bodies. It must also be remembered that in addition to these, which belong to the earth ray only, there are other hosts inhabiting Mars, Mercury, Venus, and the other planets.
However, the whole vast company of Virgin Spirits commenced their evolution in our solar period at the same time in a mineral-like existence. Differences soon developed, however. Some were found to be much more adaptable than others and they naturally progressed faster upon the path than their brethren who then become stragglers. As we advanced along the evolutionary course the number of pioneers became smaller and smaller, and the company of stragglers increased proportionately.
It should be noted, however, that this is the general rule only. There are many young souls drawn to the West by ties of kindness and service, or by hate and the desire of vengeance on account of association in past lives. Therefore, the color of the skin is no certain indication of the age of the soul any more than the color of the cover of a book reveals its nature. It should also be understood that the terms "older and younger souls" are not to be considered in any wise as reflecting or indicating superiority and inferiority. The Lords of Venus and the Lords of Mercury who helped us in our evolution are also Spirits belonging to our life wave and they have evolved so immeasurably far beyond our present status that they may look upon us as a grown young man regards his baby sister or brother.
You sometimes speak of young souls and old old souls. Were we not all started in this Earth life at the same time, or did some come on a previous life wave?
Answer: Yes, we started at the same time as the Virgin Spirits on our pilgrimage of evolution, but from the very start there were some who were more adaptable to their environment than others. Therefore from the very beginning there have been some who have straggled behind in life's school, just the same as we find children in our schools at the present day. Some are more precocious than others, and these precocious ones in life's schools are naturally able to pass into phases of evolution carrying with them a higher degree of consciousness than others.
Thus the life wave which is now human has been automatically divided into a number of classes, the lowest of which are now the anthropoid apes. On the other hand there are also some who have been particularly precocious and who have taken higher steps in evolution than the majority of mankind. They are, comparatively speaking, very few, however, and we find them as Initiates, Adepts, and Elder Brothers of humanity who stand at the top of the ladder of the human life wave. Therefore, it is true that we have all been on the road of evolution the same length of time, but some have been more adaptable, more diligent. Consequently they have gathered for themselves a greater amount of experience. That is what really makes the soul age, so that those who have attained the highest amount of knowledge may probably be called "old souls," while those who are behind them are comparatively speaking "young souls." Those Spirits who inhabit the anthropoids we may say are "soulless."
I should like to ask a question regarding a statement made by Mr. Heindel in some of his writings to the effect that when the Ascendant is in Aries it shows that the native is a young soul, or in other words, as it were, in the beginning of material manifestation. Opposing this, Mr. Heindel also says that whenever the Ascendant occurs in Scorpio, it indicates that dissolution has taken place as a beginning.
Now while the Aries aspect indicates a physical proposition, the Scropio aspect leaves one in doubt. Is this Scorpio aspect related to the physical alone and in what manner? Does dissolution follow immediately or is it of a gradual nature, finally culminating in the passing of the sign Pisces?
Mr. Heindel also states that the chart of a seven months' child is difficult to handle in that it seems out of line with the native concerned. I am a seven months' example and can vouchsafe for the truth of this statement, but taking the forepart of this letter into consdieration, I am at a loss as to just how I can reconcile conditions in my home as regards the ascendant of each member and the apparent indication and inclination of each as opposed to myself.
Answer: Even if it were true that we have made the statement you ascribe to us that those who have Aries on the Ascendant at birth are young souls, that would be no guide in your case, because you admit being a seven months' child. Therefore, the general principles could not be applied in your case, but as a matter of fact we have never made such a statement. If you look up the passage to which you have reference, you will find that your memory played you a trick. What we have said, and still, say, is that the Spirit is born under all the twelve signs in order that it may gain the experience which comes from each and it may be taken on general principles that those who are born with Aries on the Ascendant have just entered upon a new life cycle, a higher spiral on their path of evolution.
Thus it is evident that others in their immediate family or environment may have any of the other eleven signs rising and still be one or more rungs or spirals below or above the one who has Aries on the Ascendant. When this is understood you will also readily realize that when a person reaches Scorpio, the sign of death and dissolution, the fruits of all the lives under the various preceding signs are beginning to ripen and dissolve, so that when the Spirit progresses through Capricorn, Aquarius, and Pisces, these fruits are gradually assimilated and the seed ripens for the entrance of the soul into Aries and the commencement of a new life cycle.
It should also be understood that the number of births under any particular sign varies according to the adaptability of the Spirit and the readiness wherewith it learns the lessons that have been set for it by the divine Hierarchies. There may be only one birth under Aries in a certain life cycle and perhaps five or ten under other signs, and vice versa, so that if two Spirits were to enter birth under the sign Aries on the same spiral of evolution and one were diligent in learning his lessons in the school of life, he might be promoted to the Taurus or even the Gemini class before the other left Aries. Then he having a particular liking for Gemini work might speed on past the other who would be slow in the Cancer path, and so on. There are no definite rules. Everything depends upon the inherent quality of the Ego, and what one does is no criterion whatever for what another may do. Thus you cannot judge the status of any one merely by examining his Ascendant.
There is only one method that gives an approximate solution of the problem and shows what is the intention of the divine Hierarchs concerning a particular life, and that is by comparing the relative progression of the Ascendant and the Midheaven. When you do this you will note that one of them moves faster than the other. Supposing, for instance, that you progress the horoscope of a person for forty years. Let us say that one degree of Aries is on the Midheaven and one degree of Cancer on the Ascendant at birth. Suppose, then, that at any age of forty the Midheaven has progressed to Taurus 5 and the Ascendant to Leo 15. This shows that the Midheaven has traveled 35 degrees while the Ascendant has traveled 45. The Midheaven denotes the spiral tendencies and opportunities in life, while the Ascendant shows the material side. Thus is it evident that the opportunities placed before the Ego have been mainly material and the tendency of his evolution in the particular life under consideration would be of the earth, earthly.
But, mark this: the horoscope, as we have repeatedly reiterated, shows only tendencies, and it is quite possible for a person with such a horoscope to determine to go his own way and cultivate all the spiritual opportunities he possibly can. If he has sufficient will power to do this he may change his life entirely. Another, who Midheaven progresses faster than his Ascendant, might find it difficult to attain material success, but would have all the opportunities for soul growth he could wish placed in his path. He also may determine that he will rule his stars and succeed in worldly things, but whether he does or not depends upon the strength of his will pitted against the suasion of the stars.
Will you please explain the Rosicrucian viewpoint toward birth control?
Answer: In the first place we should remember that there are about sixty billion Spirits in our life wave, going the cycle of life and death, living part of the time in the visible and part in the invisible worlds. At the present time there are only fifteen hundred millions of people in physical existence. This is about the lowest ebb, and that usually happens at the end of an age. During the million years or more since we came out of Atlantis the average has been fifty to sixty million people.
Woman has been the arbiter of the world's destiny in past civilizations, while man has had his way in others as is now the case. We are now upon the eve of a transition to a new Age where woman will again wield the scepter of power and man will have to submit to her dictates, but before that comes to pass an era of equality will come. This is called the Aquarian Age by esotericists, and we are beginning to feel its effects since the middle of the last century when the Sun by precession came within orb of the cusp of Aquarius. It is, however, at the present time, still in ten degrees of Pisces. At the slow rate of travel of the equinox the Sun will not reach the last degree of Aquarius until about six hundred years have passed. But during that time there will of course be so many wonderful changes in our physical, moral, and mental status, that we are unable at the present time to conceive what we shall be like then.
We who are now in the body will be followed by groups of Spirits still more evolved than we, who will bring about great reforms, and by the time the people on earth at the present time are reborn about four hundred years of the Aquarian Age will be passed, so that the world will be well started on the line development peculiar to that time. The backward Spirits who are born into the atmosphere of great intellectual attainment will thereby gain an immense uplift on the same principle that an electric conductor which is brought into close proximity to a highly charged wire will automatically receive a charge of a lower voltage. Thus each class or group which rises helps also to raise those who are below it in the scale of evolution. The matter of population, then, is not entirely governed by individuals, or by man-made laws. The divine hierarchs who guide our evolution arrange the matter as required for the highest good for all concerned, and the number of population is in their hands rather than in our own.
This does not mean that we cannot or should not exercise birth control in some degree as suggested by those who are responsible for that movement. It is also true that one must help people where they are and not where they ought to be. The Rosicrucian teachings emphasize the fact that like attracts like, and therefore it is a duty upon the part of those who are well developed physically, morally, and mentally to provide an environment for as many incoming Spirits as their physical and financial circumstances will permit. This duty is still more binding upon those who are also spiritually developed, for a high spiritual entity cannot enter into physical existence through a vile parentage. But when a couple has reached the point where it is deemed either dangerous to the health of the mother to bear more children, or where the financial burden would be above their means, then they should live a life of continence, not indulging the passional nature and seeking by artificial means to bar the way for incoming Egos to take advantage of the opportunity for rebirth offered them by the sexual indulgence of such a couple.
This naturally requires considerable spiritual advancement and self-control. There are few who are capable of living such a life, and one might as well preach continence to a stone wall as to the average specimen of humanity. He cannot understand that it is necessary. He even believes that it would interfere with his health, for false statements about the necessity of exercising the natural function has led to many deplorable results. Even if he could be persuaded that he ought to deny himself for the good of his mate and the children he has already brought into the world, he would probably be utterly unable to restrain himself, particularly because people in such moderate circumstances can usually not afford to have separate sleeping quarters. Therefore it may be necessary to teach these people birth control by scientific means. However, we submit that though they are unable to understand the reason why continence should be practiced, and unable to practice it because of lace of self-control, the spiritual teachings should be given repeatedly so that as the steady drop wears the stone, in time the coming generations will learn to depend on their own will power to accomplish the object of keeping their lower nature in check. Without this educational feature looking towards a spiritual emancipation, information concerning physical methods of limiting the birth rate in families that are overburdened is dangerous in the extreme.
There is another phase of the matter which deserves elucidation. It has been said that, "the attitude of the mother's mind just prior to the reception of the seed atom is all-important in determining what sort of child she will bring into the world. A fit of temper or violent passion at this sacred moment leaves the gateway unguarded and invites the wrong sort of entity to enter." Besides the people in the world we see, the whole atmosphere about us teems with different other entities who are attracted to beings of a like nature. Just as musicians congregate in music halls, sportsmen in yacht clubs and on race tracks, etc., so do these entities gather around people of a nature similar to their own. As drunkards and gangsters gather around our physical saloons, as immoral men and woman meet in so-called red light districts, so also immoral spirits gather around a home where the passions of the lower nature are indulged perhaps many times during the night or day.
There is a certain class of beings, male or female demons living in the ether, who were called by the ancient alchemists incubi and succubi, which feed upon the passions of others. What chance has a mother in such an environment of attracting desirable Spirit to take rebirth through her? And although conception is almost never synchronous with the union of the parents, but may take place at any moment with two weeks or more of that event, a mother surrounded by such influences in the home is never free from them. Some of the religions of some of the people we call savages require to this day that the generative act be performed in the temple, and that is as it should be. There is no more important act in life, and instead of being condemned as a shame it ought to be exalted to the dignity of a sacrament and performed under the holiest and most inspiring circumstances possible. Were this done today as in the so-called Golden Age, we should find an upliftment and an improvement in the conditions of the world as we would not deem possible to accomplish in centuries.
Do you think it advisable to ask for treatment in such cases of consumption, cancer, sclerosis and the like, or should we accept these diseases as incurable, the result of some cause in the past, and wait for a more efficient body in another life?
Answer: Cancer and consumption are often seemingly incurable, yet there is always a possibility that they may yield, and they certainly will yield if the force directed against them is sufficient. Like all other physical manifestations they are the result of a spiritual cause, and if we can get at that, offset it with something of an opposite nature, there is a chance of recovery; whereas the attitude of resignation and non-assistance will certainly never bring the patient out of his condition. Life in a salubrious climate, a strong desire for health, a hope that neither knows nor permits of discouragement, and a simple nutritious diet will cure even the worst case of consumption.
As for cancer, no one can ever tell when the debt of destiny which has caused the trouble has been paid. There are many cases on record where cancer has been cured; that is to say, in its milder forms. But even in an advanced stage there is no reason for giving up hope as long as there is life. In the case of sclerosis there are several methods of curing it, and the patient may become as well as ever particularly if he can be brought to recognize the breach of the laws of nature which caused the disease in his particular case.
It is to this end that we should always labor, for whether any disease be cured or not, if the patient can be taught what laws have been transgressed and how, if he can be led to see what is the spiritual cause of the disease, and learn to walk in the way of virtue according to the laws of God, then in the future there will be no disease for him. It is that which we are laboring for, that we may hasten the day of Liberation, and bring all mankind toward the full realization of health.
What is the effect of morphine on those who are addicted to its use? When a person who has been very ill for a long time, and who, because of the severe suffering, has been kept unconscious by large doses of morphine for many days, passes from earth life in that condition does the released spirit become conscious when it leaves the body? What is its condition compared to that of one who dies suddenly and in full possession of all faculties?
Answer: The use of morphine and other narcotics in very small doses such as are generally taken by the ordinary drug addict has a deadening effect upon the nerves, so that the Spirit feels less sensitive in the body and more like the freed Spirit which left the physical vehicle. Under such conditions the mental faculties are better, and the person feels such an ease of mind and body that it is like heaven itself until the reaction sets in; then he begins to suffer the tortures of hell, and consequently takes more in order to restore his previous sense of well-being.
When morphine is given in large doses, it produces a condition similar to that of a person who passes out while under an anesthetic. The writer has met a number of the latter, but has never seen one who passed out under the action of morphine; therefore he cannot give the direct information asked for. But these people who died under an anesthetic were just as conscious as the ordinary human being after the silver cord has been severed. They went through their life panorama in about the same way as the person who passes out normally, and had no different experiences. Therefore we should say that one who passes out under morphine probably has no extra-unpleasant experience on account of the morphine given him before his transition; and the first feeling would be one of great relief that he had escaped from the suffering incident to severe illness preceding death of the physical body. This feeling of relief is common to all who have suffered, no matter whether consciously or unconsciously. They are all exceedingly grateful that this is past, and can scarcely realize that there is no sickness in the land of the living dead to which they go after leaving this world.
Are doctors justified in allowing a child to die that is bound to be an idiot and physically helpless when an operation would enable it to live. Does an idiot or an insane person gain any worth-while experience during life? Is the Ego within aware of the physical disability of the mind and body during such a life, and does it learn thereby? Can insanity be classed among the hereditary diseases?
Answer: Suppose a child met with an accident while playing, a blow on the head, and hence became abnormal, or perhaps was put into a state of coma; no one would hesitate for a moment to have the operation of trepanning performed so that by taking the pressure off the skull from the brain the child might be restored to its normal state of consciousness. They why should a weak-minded child not receive the same care, and have everything done for it that is possible? It would be considered criminal to allow a normal child to die for lack of care, and it is just as indefensible in the case of a child born to be an idiot, for when the Ego has gone through the womb in order to gain the experiences of this physical life, we are in duty bound to support its efforts in every possible manner.
The Ego does gain experience by a life of insanity, for the Ego itself is never insane. It is improper connection between its various vehicles, the mind, desire body, vital body, and dense body, which makes insanity. When the connection between the brain centers and the vital body is imperfect, we have what is called the idiot, often melancholy but generally perfectly harmless. When the faulty connection is between the vital body and the desire body, the conditions are somewhat similar, but include the class whose muscular control is defective, as in epilepsy., St Vitus dance, etc. When the connection is broken or faulty between the desire body and the mind, we have a raving maniac who is violent and dangerous. And when the connection is defective between the Ego and the mind, we have what we might call a soulless man, the most dangerous of all, gifted with a cunning that is usually at some unexpected time put to a most diabolical use.
If we consider the body, or the different bodies, as musical instruments upon which the Ego is playing, then when every connection is perfect the Ego can bring out more or less beautiful symphony of life according to its state in evolution. But when the connections are faulty or broken the Ego is like a musician forced to exercise his talent with an instrument lacking a number of strings, and he is therefore unable to bring out anything but discord. To the musician it would be torture to be forced to play on such a defective instrument; and it is the same with the Ego which is immured in a body cut off from its normal control. For reasons to be sought in past lives it is forced to stay with a body that it cannot control, and it suffers more or less acutely according to its stage in evolution; thus, however, it is learning a certain lesson in the school of life which is required to make it perfect. It is a sad condition, but though a lifetime appears to be very long, it is but a fleeting moment in the unending life of the Spirit; and we may console ourselves with the knowledge that when such an Ego comes back to earth it will have a normal body, provided of course that the lesson has been learned.
With respect to the last part of the question as to whether insanity is hereditary, we may answer in the affirmative or the negative according to which phase of the problem we are considering. From the spiritual point of view it is not hereditary for, as already stated, insanity is not a defect in the Ego. Because of a twist in its character it cannot build a normal body, hence by association it is drawn to a family that is similarly afflicted. This is on the very same principle that people of like character always seek one another's company; as the old saying goes, "birds of a feather flock together." Musicians congregate in music halls, at concerts, and similar places. They also seek birth in families of musicians because there the instruments needed, long slender fingers and an ear in which the semicircular canals are properly placed, can be obtained, which will give them the ability to express music. Sporting men and gamblers flock together at race tracks and in gambling dens. Thieves have their resorts, and so on. Similarly, those with a certain defect in their character are attracted to families which have the same defect. Hence if we view the problem of insanity from the form side, it may be said that it is hereditary.
Scientists who view the matter entirely from the form side are of the opinion that by limiting the reproduction of defectives they may stamp out disease. But just as the soft juices of the snail's body are gradually set out and crystallized into the hard and flinty shell it carries upon its back, so it is also the acts of the Ego which gradually crystallize themselves into a body wherein the Spirit must dwell until they are worked out. Relief will never be obtained by working with and upon the physical body alone, any more than operating upon the shell would cure a sick snail. Emerson said truly that "a sick man is a scoundrel who has been found out, breaking the laws of nature." The insane are in that category, and if we wish to cure them we must use spiritual means of education. All other methods are simply palliative; they do not reach the source of the disease.
When an arm or a limb is amputated does that exist independently in the Desire World after amputation? And after death does a person appear minus a hand or foot in the Desire World? I have known people to suffer pain in a limb long after amputation, even years. How is this accounted for?
Answer: When an arm, limb, or any organ has been removed from the physical body by any means of a surgical operation, only the dense part of the organ permeated by the planetary ether is taken away. The four ethers which constitute the vital body of the man or woman thus operated upon remain; but there is a certain magnetic connection between the part decaying in the grave and the etheric counterpart which remains with the person.
Therefore, he or she feels the pain and suffering in the part removed for some time after an operation, until decay has taken place, and the etheric counterpart has disintegrated.
You will find some interesting cases demonstrating this point and some further teaching on this matter in the Cosmo. When a person who is injured passes into the invisible realm, he thinks with the same mind, pictures himself there as he was in this world. Consequently a scar on the forehead or the loss of an arm or limb is reproduced by his thought in the matter of the Desire World and he appears there disfigured as he was here.
In the World War this was very noticeable, for all the soldiers who passed out with wounds which they could see and which they knew how to determine the effect of, reproduced these wounds in their desire bodies. They felt pain similar to what they would have felt if they had still been in the physical body, because they fancied that there must be pain connected with it. However, they were very quickly assisted by one another and by those who had been helped by the Elder Brothers to see the matter right: that there was no actual pain. As soon as they were convinced that their wounds were but illusions and taught that they could shape their bodies in the normal and health state, they could quickly remedy the condition.
The following is sent in by a doctor of osteopathy: At the time of treatment can one destroy sick vibrations so that they will not return after treatment?
Answer: If we read between the lines of this question we shall sense two very common difficulties in the practice of Osteopathy and kindred methods of treatment by the laying on of hands. In this process there are two distinct operations. One is taking away from the patient something that is poisonous and injurious, provocative of disease; and there is also a giving out of vital force by the doctor himself or herself. Everybody who has done any work of this kind knows this because it has been felt and is felt by everybody who is successful. Now, unless the doctor or healer is bubbling over with radiant health, two things are liable to happen: either the human miasma taken away from the patient may so overwhelm him or her that, to use a common expression, "he takes on the condition" of the patient, or he may give too much of his own vital force, and thus become entirely depleted. Both of these conditions may combine, and then there comes a day when the physician or healer finds himself or herself run down and forced to rest up.
Magnetic healers who are frankly unscientific, often escape the first-mentioned condition by "throwing off the magnetism," as they say, but all are liable to be run down. That is something that nobody can escape, save one who can see the etheric effluvia he takes and the vital fluid he gives. Most people are vampires when they are sick, and the stronger and more robust they are ordinarily, the worst they are usually when sickness has put them in bed. I have never been so sick as I was after treating a giant who was suffering from intense inflammation of the kidneys and had been in bed from this cause for more than two weeks. It was dreadful to see his agony, and I gave myself wholly, with the result that I was prostrated. The patient, however, was up the next morning and as well as ever. He had my vitality, I had his disease, or at least the effluvia from it, and it took me three days to get rid of it. That was, of course, before I was able to see spiritually.
Since then I have gained considerable knowledge in this department, and the questioner will find the following hint of value in keeping away these undesirable conditions: First, fix your thought firmly in such a manner that you will not allow this miasmatic effluvia which leaves the patient's body to enter your body farther than the elbow; second, when you are giving treatment leave the patient once in a while and wash your hands in running water if possible; but at any rate wash in water, and change the water as frequently as possible. The water has a twofold effect. In the first place, the effluvia leaving the patient's body has an affinity for water. In the second place, the moisture which stays upon your hands enables you to get the miasma from the patient in a larger measure than you otherwise would.
This is on the very same principle that if you take the electrodes of an electrical battery and put them into water, you will find the effect of the electricity is many times intensified if you try to touch the water.
So also with yourself: you are the electric battery in the case, and your hands being moistened, the miasma will be drawn to yourself in a much greater measure than otherwise. If conditions are such that you cannot get water you may try to throw off the magnetism, but then it is necessary to be careful, because when the magnetism is thrown away from you it is attracted to the earth because it is subject to gravity. To the spiritual vision it is a dark or rather a black, jelly-like fluid. It lies shimmering and shivering on the floor. If now the patient gets up relieved from the couch where the treatment has been given, and goes over the place where this magnetism has been thrown away, then the miasma will reenter the body and he or she will be in a worse condition that before you started the treatment. Therefore, it is the best policy to throw such miasma out of the window, or better still, put it into a fireplace and then set fire to it.
From the foregoing, it is evident that this laying on of hands is something that should not be done indiscriminately by any one who has not been trained in one of the many properly schools of Osteopathy, Chiropractic, etc. In the School of the Rosicrucians, Probationers who live worthy lives are trained under the special guidance of the Elder Brothers.
At the time of treating a patient, can one destroy the vibrations of disease so that once they have been removed from the patient they do not return after the treatment is over?
Answer: We suppose you refer to magnetic treatment for disease, and we may say that this method of healing consists wholly in removing vibrations of disease by absorption into the body of the healer, who must have sufficient vitality to throw them off himself or he will become ill in turn. This has been explained before in our literature, but perhaps taking the subject up from another angle may not prove uninteresting or uninstructive.
When one looks with the spiritual sight at a person who is diseased, the patient's vital body looks thin and emaciated in proportion to the ravages made by the disease. There are no radiating lines from it as when the body is in health, but a sickly emanation which curls up in eddies and spirals that hand close to the dense body. Instead of being pinkish-purple it is usually a dull gray in most places, and the part that is particularly diseased is enveloped in something which resembles a mass of black jelly. That is what we might call the vibrations of disease, and at the time when the person receives a magnetic healing treatment it is this black poisonous mass which is absorbed into the hands of the healer. When he or she throws it off by a vigorous movement of the arms it sinks to the floor. Then if the patient happens to step close to that place where it lies he or she will reabsorb it. Therefore, it has always been the writer's practice to either throw these emanations out of the window or into a fire place where they may be burned. They they can do no harm.
But while we are upon this subject it may be well to bring home another phase of this matter and the method of healing. So long as an organ is diseased it generates this poison stuff which hangs about it and prevents the currents of the vital body from coursing through it. What a magnetic healer does is simply to cleanse this organ for the time being and thus he opens the way for the influx of life-giving and health-promoting currents. The relief is usually only temporary, for the weak and diseased organ continues to generate the poison "miasma," as we call it, so that shortly it requires another cleansing by the magnetic healer. This continues until the vital currents finally become sufficiently strong to over-master and throw off the poison stuff and cleanse the organ themselves. Then health returns.
The osteopathic physician goes at the matter from the opposite angle by manipulation of the nerves for the vital currents. This strengthens these currents and they begin to scatter the miasma in the diseased part of the body. However, it usually requires a number of treatments from him also before health is restored, because the poison miasma blocks up the nerves again shortly after he has ceased manipulations. Therefore, it would seem to the writer, though he has never tried it, that a combination of the two methods: opening up the nerve currents and strengthening them by means of osteopathic treatments, at the same time removing the poison miasma by magnetic healing, being careful either to burn or otherwise dispose of the effluvia, ought to facilitate the treatment of disease wonderfully.
How does an Initiate heal the sick? By invocation of a higher power or concentration of his own? Is there any difference between the first and the last method? If so, what is it?
Answer: As the question stands it is difficult to answer. While we know certain methods of healing, we also believe that the choice is a matter of temperament, and the different methods of healing are probably used at different times by all Initiates as the occasion demands. We know that on certain occasions the Christ addressed Himself to the Father when performing a cure. At other times when He was in a crowd and someone touched Him, He observed that the virtue had gone out from Him and doubtless healed the one who had drawn the force from Him. All who have followed in His steps have no doubt varied their methods to suit the occasion. But in the final analysis the healing power is the same, for it emanates from our Father in heaven who is the Great Physician, and each Initiate or healer absorbs as much of His divine power as he is capable of containing, giving it out as required to each suffering one that comes before Him.
If you look up the article "How We Heal the Sick" in the Healing Department of "Rays from the Rose Cross" for September, 1915, you will find there a description of our method which will throw considerable light upon the subject. (See Rosicrucian Principles of Health and Healing.) There is also in the same magazine an article by Stuart Leech, M.D., showing how he saved himself the necessity of performing a surgical operation by visiting the patient at night when he was out of his body, materializing hands within the body of the patient, and straightening out the trouble, so that the next morning the patient was cured beyond the necessity of having the knife applied. This will probably make it clear that there is considerable scope and latitude to the Initiate and Invisible Helper in dealing with the morbid conditions of the body. As said before, the healing balm comes from our Father in heaven, and no matter who does the work or what method he uses to bring health to the ailing, the glory and honor belong to God alone.
When we are afflicted in this life and have a surgical operation performed and the diseased organ removed, does that heal us permanently or do we return in a future body with a similar ailment?
Answer: Christ said: "As a man thinketh in his heart so is he," and this covers the matter thoroughly when taken in its widest significance. When we enter the invisible realms after death and during the post-mortem state undergo the purgatorial and First Heaven experiences, all our vehicles are gradually dissolved, and we enter the Second Heaven where we commence to create the environment of our new existence. When that task has been completed we enter the Third Heaven where only a very, very few have consciousness as yet. Hence, forgetfulness of all that has gone before wipes the slate clean and we take with us only the quintessence of our past experiences as faculties when we reenter the Second Heaven on our way toward rebirth and mould the archetype of our coming physical body with the help of the Recording Angels and their agents.
To make the point clear let us remember that during childhood days we go through the most dreadful contortions in learning to write. The letters we form are grotesque in the extreme, but by and by in the course of time with persistent effort we acquire the faculty of writing a legible hand. Then as the years pass by we forget our difficulties in learning to write but the faculty remains with us. Similarly, the embodied Spirit forgets all that has gone before, but the faculty of doing certain things remains with it. Therefore, it is has formed a body weak in a certain place in one life and has suffered the pain incident to that weakness and disease, even to the removal of an organ, we may be very sure that though the event will be forgotten in a coming existence the Spirit will remember the fact when it is molding the archetype and coming to rebirth. It will then endeavor to build a better organ so that it may save itself the pain which it endured in a previous life and thus, instead of perpetuating the diseased organ, it is very safe to say that an organ that was diseased in one life will be sound in the next. Gradually mankind is thus learning by past mistakes to build a better and sounder body.
To take another illustration, we may consider how an architect would act who had built a house and by living in it found certain discomforts. If he sold this house and built himself another, he would remember the discomforts he had in his previous dwelling and endeavor to build a house that would be free from those inconveniences. Then perhaps he would find other developments that were not to his taste in the new house and on selling that would build a third house that would be better than the two previous and so on. We may infer that the case is similar with the house of the Spirit which it builds anew in each life. Oliver Wendell Holmes put that so very beautifully in the last verse of his "Chambered Nautilus," which had built larger and larger chambers as it grew and finally had left the outgrown shell. He says:
There has been brought to my notice a case where a woman had been operated upon and the spleen removed. According to the Rosicrucian Teachings the spleen is the entrance gate of the solar forces which vitalize the body, and in the etheric counterpart of that organ the solar energy is transmuted to a vital fluid of a pale rose color, which from thence spreads all over the nervous system. We also learn that the rays of the Sun are transmitted either directly or reflected by way of the planets, or by way of the Moon. The direct rays from the Sun give spiritual illumination, those received from the planets produce intelligence, morality, and soul growth. In a case like the above described, will the etheric counterpart continue to perform its work after the dense organ ahs been removed, or will it disintegrate as does the etheric counterpart of an arm or leg that has been amputated, and if so what is the effect upon the person so operated on?
Answer: You are right in your statement of the Rosicrucian Teachings, except where you say that the solar energy is transmuted in the spleen to a pale rose colored fluid. The spleen is the gate of the solar forces, but the transmutation you speak about takes place in the solar plexus, where the prismatic seed-atom of the vital body is located.
With respect to what takes place after the spleen has been removed, it will help us to recall that the physical body accommodates itself so far as possible to altered conditions. If a wound in a certain part of the body makes it impossible for the blood to flow in the normal channels, it finds another set of veins by which it may take its circuit. But an organ never atrophies so long as it can serve any useful purpose. It is similar with the vital body composed of the ethers. When an arm or a limb has been amputated, the etheric counterpart of that member is no longer required in the economy of the body, therefore it gradually wastes away. But in the case of an organ like the spleen where the etheric counterpart has an important functions as gateway for the solar energy, naturally no such disintegration will take place.
It should also be remembered that whenever disease manifests in the physical vehicle that part of the vital body has first become thin, attenuated, and diseased, and it was its failure to supply the necessary vital energy that caused the manifestation of physical symptoms of ill-health. Conversely, when health returns, the vital body is the first to pick up and this convalescence is then manifested in the dense body. Therefore, if the physical spleen is diseased, it is a foregone conclusion that the etheric counterpart is also in subnormal health, and the wisdom of removing the organ is doubtful. However, if it is done, the body will seek to accommodate itself to the new conditions and the etheric counterpart of the spleen with continue to function as before.
When one who has been working unconsciously as an Invisible Helper leaves the body at death, will he recognize those in the spirit world with whom he has been workin at night, or will those experiences leave no record?
Answer: The experiences of an Invisible Helper who works unconsciously in the invisible worlds during the time when the body is asleep may be likened to a dream which he does not remember upon awakening. However, the experiences are nevertheless stored in the seed atom and will form part of the panorama of life, so that when he leaves the body at death he will see all that has happened to him, awake or asleep, during the time when he lived in the body. Thus his recollection of what has happened will not be quire the same as if he had gone through it consciously, but he will nevertheless obtain from the life-panorama a knowledge and an idea of what has been done. thus, though he will not have the same feeling as if he had been going through the experience consciously, he will soon adjust himself to believe and understand that what seemed a dream is nevertheless a perfectly true experience.
I have always been weak and anemic, and I find that other people vampirize my strength. Must I stop helping people by concentrating for them, or can you give some safe method of protection? I know of several people who would be helped by your answer.
Answer: If you will study what is said in The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception about the way thoughts are generated in the mind and then projected upon others to do their work, you will learn a great deal concerning the science of concentration and how to do the work you are trying to perform for humanity. Incidentally, you will probably realize that the thought forms you send out for the purpose of helping others take away only a small part of your own desire body which is immediately replaced by desire stuff of an even higher grade than that sent out, owing to the high rate of vibration always generated by unselfish effort. However, it takes nothing away from your vital body and it is upon the condition of this vehicles that your physical health depends.
Thus you are never vampirized by concentrating upon anyone else when you yourself are alone, but it is the contact with other people that is apt to hurt you if you are in a weakened condition. If you are at all sensitive you probably know who draws upon you, and while walking and visiting with such people it is best if possible to keep a few feet away from them. If you are sitting in a room with them and talking with them, cross your limbs at the ankles and fold your hands. Then you form a magnetic circuit on the floor or ground your are in magnetic rapport with any person who happens to be near you.
These measures are, however, only precautions which you may use with advantage until you get yourself in hand. That should be your first consideration, for it is useless to apply palliative treatments to the effect while the cause is still thee. According the the conditions we get from your letter you need iron and ether. If it is possible for you to get milk directly it has been milked from the cow that will be a wonderful help to you, for at that time the milk is surcharged with the healthy animal ether. However if you cannot get it that way there are other means.
Relative to their size, the plants have the strongest vital bodies composed of the two lower ethers, which have to do with the assimilation of physical nutriment. Therefore, green vegetables even though they have been in the market for some time are surcharged with ether. Lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, and strawberries are among the plants which abound in iron. If you will refrain from cooking, merely putting them in water an hour before meals to make them crisp, you will in a short time increase the ether in your body and the iron in your system. The you will not be anemic and in danger of vampirism.
Contemporary Mystic Christianity
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