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The Book of Job
The Prologue

   The Prologue of Job occurs in heaven with the vision of the Great Spirits about the throne of God. These are the Archangels who, in the old star worship, were believed to bear the planets about in their courses, and John also describes them in his initiatory picture in Revelation, which is the great Mystery book of the New Testament.

   Both Job and Revelation open with a description of an inspired seer's vision as he contemplates the spectacle of ethereal light diffused through the seven planetary spheres. The first Christians and earlier Initiates were accustomed to assemble on certain specified days to ascend in consciousness to the Holy City, the etheric Jerusalem situated above the physical place of that name. Tbe Prologue of Job is an earlier fragmentary recollection of this sublime experience.

   Many ancient Mystery plays were written upon themes similar to that of Job. A fragment of Euripides' Belleraphontes, written about 425 B.C., belongs in this category. In this play, Belleraphontes' son was lost at the hands of Ares and his daughter by Artemis. The protagonist here also finds that evil-doers prosper at the expense of the good, and that the weak are opposed and often overcome by the strong. Finally, over-mastered by his trials, he doubts the existence of God, and in striving to ascend into heaven is blasted by a thunderbolt. Thus condemned by the god Jupiter, he wanders, lame and blind, over the world in search of that panacea which he must eventually discover within himself.

   Goethe's Faust is another mystery drama in which the Initiate-Teacher endeavors to solve the problem of the source and purpose of evil and suffering in human evolution; in which the inherent virtue of the human spirit is stated in these words:

   Like the author of Job, Goethe opens his soul drama with a Prologue in Heaven, where the Archangels chant rapturously before God in praise of the perfect creation, and where Mephistopheles is also allowed to appear and chant a parody of the song of the Archangels. In this Prologue, Goethe lays down the problem of the drama, and indicates its ultimate perfect solution because of the unerring instinct for good which is native to the human soul, and which may be trusted to turn evil itself to the service of universal good and thus transmute it.

The Seven Spirits Before the Throne

   In order to understand any true Mystery drama, however, we must set aside our ordinary materialistic view of the cosmos and learn to see it through the eyes of imagination, in which all is life, and the starry bodies themselves are borne on their aerial courses by winged Archangels, whose chant constitutes the Music of the Spheres. Goethe describes the tone of the Sun as a "thunder-sound" as it rises above the eastern horizon.

   We may say that each of the planets belonging to this solar system emanates its own distinctive stream of psycbo-spiritual forces, which, impinging upon the physical world, are tabulated as "laws of nature" by scientists.

   The power emanations of Mercury on the outer or exoteric Plane manifest as chemical forces (the radioactive forces come more properly under Uranus), and on the inner or esoteric plane as certain subtile vibrations necessary to all psycho-spiritual unfoldment, with particular reference to the illumination of the reason. The power emanations of Venus on the outer or exoteric plane express as cohesion, and on the inner or esoteric as the attraction and magnetism of love. Venus, more easily than most, is transmuted into the fiery pure gold of spiritual love in the Initiate.

   The power emanations of Mars on the outer or exoteric plane manifest as activity, on the inner or esoteric plane as psychic energy, the quality of which varies according as the ego is "old" or "young" in its evolution.

   The power emanations of Jupiter on the outer or exoteric plane manifest as expansion, on the inner or esoteric plane as beneficence, brotherhood. The Jupiter Initiate is the beloved elder brother of all the world.

   The power emanations of Saturn on the outer or exoteric plane manifest in the forces of contraction, on the inner or esoteric plane as affliction, limitation, sorrow; or, in the Initiate, Saturn's forces enable him to achieve the consciousness of universal Law active within the consciousness, by means of which the Initiate becomes the ally of the Intelligence which guides the destiny of the world.

   The power emanations of Uranus on the outer or exoteric plane are electro-etheric vibrations, and on the inner or esoteric plane, compassion or universal sympathy. The Uranus Initiate seeks through new science to girdle the Earth in the fellowship of Spirit, Truth.

   The power emanations of Neptune and Pluto are still not fully understood, but it is generally agreed that on the exoteric plane the Neptune influences manifest in art and music, also in such newer modes of entertainment as the moving picture; an the esoteric plane the Neptunian emanations make for an expansion of consciousness leading to Initiation. Neptune is, perhaps, somewhat more mystical and inspirational in nature than occult; that is, its powers show an affinity for the emotions out of which beauty is created. Pluto, on the other hand, is accredited with the power of revolution on the objective plane, being similar to Mars in that respect. It is Pluto which fulfills the Lord's declaration, "I will turn and overturn." Esoterically, Pluto probably brings about those cataclysms in the subconscious which are a necessary prelude to all true Illumination.

   The Sun and Moon are the great reservoirs of Life, the heat and light of the Sun being its objective manifestation, to which on the inner Planes there is a corresponding spiritual heat and spiritual light necessary to the life of the soul as their objective counterparts are necessary to the life of the body. The Moon governs rather the subtler etheric forces of growth and propagation, and on the esoteric plane it stimulates memory and imagination. The Sun typifies the Savior-Initiate; the Moon, the Initiate-Teacher, being a universalized expression of the Mother principle, which provides Earth's children with the good things of God.

   As we study the foregoing paragraphs, we see that each of the celestial bodies produces an objective and a subjective phenomenon: the outer, or objective, belongs to the world of materiality; the inner, or subjective, to the world of soul. The power emanations of the planets which are objective in nature have to do with man's evolution on the planet Earth; the inner-plane emanation affects the expansion of consciousness, or spiritual development of man, and of the Earth also.

   The purpose of Initiation is to stimulate the inner processes of the human spirit by which the consciousness is awakened to the superlative Light of God-consciousness. "To die" and "to be initiated" come from the same Greek word, and refers in both instances to the putting off of the old man and the putting on of the new. Ordinarily this occurs through the natural process of physical deterioration and death; but in the Initiate the "death" takes place through the intensification of consciousness and its consequent sensitization of the nerves. Thus, literally, "heaven is taken by storm."

   Greatest of initiatory formulas was that enunciated by the supreme Master when He said: "He that is greatest among you, let him be the servant of all." This is the true test of Initiateship, and is the secret of the conquest of "Satan."

   The Satan of the Prologue of Job, to whom God grants permission to test Job, is Saturn, the great tester or afflicter according as we look upon him from the negative or the positive viewpoint; his vibrations expressed in the keywords of contraction and limitation are biblically referred to thus:

   The forces of limitation and contraction serve a most constructive and beneficent purpose when operating as laws of nature; without them, there would be no "material" or "formed" universe at all. Similarly, a beneficent purpose is served by Saturn morally, when as a tester and afflicter he limits the activity of self-will, or turns it back upon its source in sorrow and suffering, thus defining more clearly the quality and powers of the soul. Hence we see that the influence of Saturn is by no means an evil force. It is only our own reaction-in self-pity and bitterness — which causes it to be so considered.

   The office of Saturn in the life of Job is very different from that of Milton's devil in the Edenic garden and of Goethe's Mephistopheles. The role of these tempters was to lure man into wrong action. The work of Satan in the life of Job was impersonal. Its object was to plumb the inner strength and spiritual power developed by Job as an individual. In this lies the difference between the operations of Satan (Saturn) and of the devil (Mars) in their influence upon humanity.

   Sorrow is the great awakener of the soul and thus becomes the redemptive theme of the Book of Job. "There is never an affliction of the body but that may bring profit to the soul," runs an ancient adage.

   It is always the essence of life experience which, assimilated by the ego, constitutes the pabulum by which consciousness is continually nourished to a higher growth, until at last the individual may qualify as an aspirant to the Mysteries. A young soul, so-called, never possesses the necessary requisites. One must have learned unselfishness, a lack of ambition for personal glory or aggrandizement. One must be content to walk in the shadows that others may have the light, live a life of absolute purity and harmlessness, give oneself in complete renunciation of self to the service of love. So to live is to qualify as a sacrifice upon Christ's altar, where, in the words of Paul, we die daily. Admittedly, such attainment is as yet for the few; hence books such as Job, Daniel and Revelation must remain sealed "until the end", when the masses through their own self-awakening may find the key which unlocks the mystery of these high and holy things.

   Faust declares, "Two souls, alas, are housed within my breast, and struggle there for undivided reign." So likewise there are two jobs, whose lives parallel one another during a portion of the drama. One Job is the man who lives in the mortal concepts, and whose reactions to the Saturnian taskmaster are those of the average good, but unenlightened, man. He is ready to curse the power which afflicts him and then die. The second Job has laid his personal life upon the altar of sacrifice. No seeming ill can tempt or move him from his faith in spiritual justice for he realizes that its purpose works ultimately for the larger good of man. He lifts himself above the mists of time-bound thought, and sings from soul-illumined heights: "The Lord (Law) giveth and the Lord (Law) taketh away, blessed be the name of the Lord" (Law). Here on the purified summit of consciousness the forces of sorrow cannot touch the white calm of his soul, for he has followed to the end that Path which the Great Initiator describes as the Way of Truth and Light, and which Job describes as the "Path which no soul knoweth and which the eye of the vulture hath not seen." "Here," he adds, "wisdom and understanding are to be found."

   Inasmuch as the Book of Job is a book concerned with interior revelation, its profound import can only reveal itself to us little by little, as we grow inwardly, and thus discover that the soul-experiences of its characters point the way for us also to qualify as Job did for the spiritual exaltation in which he heard the "morning stars singing together and the sons of God shouting for joy."

   The Book of Job has rightly been called "the supreme epic of the inner life." The major content of the book deals, therefore, with the processes whereby the unillumined, the uninitiated, is transformed into the Initiate, in the manner described by Paul: "We shall not all die but we shall be changed, in the twinkling of an eye we shall be changed." At this point Job became another man as if born anew, and henceforth communed with God in the whirlwind and sang divinely of the glory of Sun, Moon and Stars and all created things.

   His consciousness was one with all. He had come into a living realization of the sacred bond that links all life with the life of God. For him every form of creation was hallowed and the theme of his song, as of his prayer, could only emerge as a prolonged chant of praise.

   For the twofold Job there were given two keys to freedom: To the mortal Job the first key, "Thou shalt be illumined through pain;" to the Initiate Job the second key, "Thine own right hand can save thee."

   Here once more is the characteristic gospel of Gnosis. The more deeply one studies the mysteries of life and being, always the more reverently he observes the wonders within himself, and the more understandingly he meditates upon the occult significance of the Grecian temple mantram: "Man, know thyself, and thou shalt know all the mysteries of the universe." It is by The power within that man either dooms or redeems himself.

   The numerals in this text hold much occult interest. Every number used is associated with regeneration or redemption. Seven is the number of the sevenfold body through which man is evolving; three, the impress of the spirits work on this body that soul qualities may become manifest; five is the number of new life, the redemption of the material, the star that arises from the cross.

   The one hundred and forty years of job's life also make five, the purifying redemptive number. Thus numerically also the Book of Job contains as its major theme the story of man's regeneration.

   Its characters are the ego and its attributes, Job standing in the place of the ego at the threshold of Illumination and the friends representing one phase or another of the personality, as we shall see. The dialogue is the language of reason pitted against materialism, desire and opinionativeness. Its great literary climax is the goal of human evolution in the awakening of the soul to universal consciousness, and for this reason we look upon the final chapters as the Initiate's Song par excellence. These are chapters descriptive of one who has grown strong through the conquest of self, and who in self-mastery has learned to control even the elements of Nature; one who has learned the mystery of sea, air, earth and sky; one who possesses the power by which to commune consciously with the Divine within; one who "walks in the Light even as He is in the Light."

   This is the ideal ultimately to be achieved by all, but which as yet is the conscious objective of the very few. True it is that "whomsoever wills may come; but although "many are called, few are chosen.'

 — Corinne Heline

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Contemporary Mystic Christianity

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