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The Fourth Vision: The Handwriting on the Wall

   Belshazzar was proud, haughty and insolent. He showed his supreme contempt for the Hebrew captives by commanding that the gold and silver vessels which had been kept in the sacred precincts of the Temple be brought to his banquet hall, there to be used in scenes of wildest revelry.

   Babylon was one of the most beautiful cities the world has ever seen. Its magnificence was unrivaled at the time and has never since been surpassed. Archeologists have discovered the ruins of a mighty Temple, the entrance of which was composed of stately columns while surrounding it were twenty-seven spacious chambers. It is thought that one of these great halls was used by Belshazzar for his memorable feast. The splendor of this banquet, with its throngs of guests, its flowers, the flowing of heavily perfumed wines and the wild abandonment of merry-making, has long been a favorite theme for artists and poets. It was while this luxurious orgy was at its height that the mysterious hand appeared upon the wall and wrote in a mystic script: "MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN" — "Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting ... Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians."

   While these letters of fire were being inscribed upon the wall the soldiers of Cyrus were approaching and surrounding the city. Belshazzar was soon taken prisoner, and later was killed for his attempt to create an uprising among his people. By this time the purity and beauty that belonged to early Babylonian cults were entirely lost and religious practices had degenerated into grossest forms of superstition. As is often the case in such decadence, the people were no longer able to contact the spiritual Hierarchies that had previously guided them, so they came under the influence of earth-bound discarnate entities and succumbed to forms of idolatry and vicious cruelties. All early races possessed a type of involuntary clairvoyance; hence, it was an easy matter for them to read etheric records wherein is inscribed the out lines of the most important events to occur in any individual life. Belshazzar had been given his opportunity for leadership and had failed ignominiously. The record of that failure was written in the ethers, and it was this record that was revealed at his last and most fateful celebration.

   The feast described so graphically in the fifth chapter of Daniel was an annual celebration in honor of the God Nebo (Mercury) observed at the Autumn Equinox. Knowledge of this custom enabled Cyrus to successfully attack the city during the night.

   An esotericist reads into the conditions attendant upon that feast a stage of evolution wherein the ego is held in thralldom to desire, and its subsequent limiting reactions. Daniel, man of wisdom, pure and chaste in word and deed, had been forgotten and ignored by the profligate prince who succeeded to the throne of Chaldea after Nebuchadnezzar. The prophet represents the few who have overcome the world and live only to serve their fellow-men.

   The words "mene, mene, tekel, upharsin" mean to number, to weigh and to divide. They therefore indicate a karmic harvest and its weighing. Astrologically, the reference is to Libra, called the Balance Gate by the Egyptians. This sign is posited between Scorpio (the flesh) and Virgo (the spirit). In the Egyptian Book of the Dead, upon physical death the ego is ushered to this gate of Libra where its soul is weighed to determine whether its future abode is to be paradise or purgatory. It is in this place of the balance that the neophyte is tested. He who fails is symbolized by Belshazzar; he who is victorious, by Daniel.

   Bible readers are familiar with the story of Belshazzar's feast and its supernatural finale. Although the king challenged, upbraided and threatened his wise men in an effort to learn the meaning of those four words written in the ancient Sumerian tongue, he was eventually forced to turn to Daniel who only could, or would, interpret the writing — a writing which Daniel called "the scripture of truth."

   Aside from the actual inscription in a prehistoric language upon the Temple wall, there was another Scripture upon the walls of heaven: the starry hieroglyphs which were written in celestial fire. At that feast of the Autumnal Equinox, sacred to the Earth Goddess, the Sun was in Libra, symbol of cosmic justice. Its earthly correspondence is the ingathering of the harvest. Accordingly, Daniel translated the fiery message to mean "A mina, a mina, a shekel, and a half mina." These words were the names of Babylonian weights. "A mina, a mina" conveyed the idea of numbering, so Daniel translated them: "God has numbered thy kingdom and finished it." "Tekel" (shekel) he interpreted to mean an act of weighing: "Thou art weighed in the balance (Libra) and art found wanting." "Upharsin" he defined as derived from the word peres, meaning to divide. Therefore, he completed the translation as saying: "Thy kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians."

   Until this moment the Babylonians had been supremely confident of victory. Anything else was unbelievable. Had they not taunted the Persians with shouts and laughter, saying they could feed themselves within their walls for a twenty-year siege if necessary. They gave no thought to the Law of Destiny which unerringly governs both individuals and nations: As ye sow, so shall ye reap. In letters of light above the magnificent but heedless city was emblazoned the record of its wrong-doing and inevitable garnering: "Thou art weighed in the balance and art found wanting ... Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians."

   It may be asked, "why did not the court wise men read this message and warn the king?" Some of them may have been in league with the enemy, for there were many, like Daniel himself, who came of a conquered people so had no cause to love Babylon. Others may have feared to. be bearers of bad news to their all-powerful monarch. Still others may not have been so well taught as Daniel. He possessed power to read the astral records and to carry on clairaudient communication with the archangelic Beings who have charge of racial evolution.

 — Corinne Heline

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