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The Perfect Instruction

   From a consideration of the architecture of temples, we turn now to a study of the architecture of the human body and the way of its regeneration. The Tabernacle, the Temples of Solomon, Zerubbabel, Ezekiel and the Holy City of the Seer of Patmos — all temples, in fact, have their parallels in the body of man. Christ Jesus Himself said: "Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up again," and the disciples knew that He was referring to the temple of the body. Each of the five above-named Temples were divided into three parts, an inner, an outer court and a holy place. There is this same threefold division in the human body.

   The infinite wisdom of the Celestial Beings who control and supervise the evolution of form is evidenced in the marvelous formations of the bony structure. In our skeleton are found the basic elements of architecture — the dome (head), the pillars (legs), the arches (feet). All vertebrates have a number of their anterior vertebral points enlarged and united into a casket forming the skull which protects the most precious enlargement of the nervous center, the brain. There are also a number of the posterior joints enlarged and united to form the pelvis which serves as a support for the lower limbs. The pelvis is formed of the sacrum (sacred bone) and the two innominate or nameless bones, and encloses the organs of generation. With regeneration accomplished, this becomes the Grail. There is a third casket formed of the ribs, the backbone and the diaphragm. This is the thorax, and encloses and protects the vital organs of heart and lungs.

   Claude Bragdon, an architect of our day who possesses an esoteric understanding of his profession, writes in his book, The Beautiful Necessity: "The body is rich in veiled repetitions. The head and arms are a refinement of the trunk and limbs. There is a rhythmic diminution in the entire graceful tapering of the body. The limbs radiate from the trunk, the fingers from the wrists, the toes from the ankles, the ribs from the spinal columns as veins radiate from the central vein of a leaf.

   "Temples are built in accordance with the laws of man's own being Man's senses are the Temple gates, the heart its sanctuary. The human body, the soul's temple, is the archetype for sacred edifices."

   As Gothic architecture has been interpreted as the flowering forth of the spirit of Christianity into stone, so also the Temples described in the Bible are prototypes of the perfect human body which the spirit of Christianity will eventually produce.

   The cruciform cathedral figures first of all the glorified spirit of Christ Jesus, and His sacrifice made so that man might learn how to become Christed; this in turn foreshadows the building of that perfect temple which St. John describes as being of "the measure of a man."

   Every building, if rightly constructed, becomes the receptacle of an interior subjective beauty which emanates from the cosmic pattern according to which all earthly temples, including the body temple of man, are conceived and executed, This archetypal pattern (which constitutes the supreme Masonic ideal) gradually reflects upon its miniature earthly replica (more and more) of its own radiant and dazzling glory.

   Jacob Boehme writes: "Made after the image and likeness of God, the whole body with all its parts represents heaven and earth; the interior of the body, the deep between the stars and the earth. The heart is fire, the larynx earth, the liver water, the lungs air. The feet, near and far, are from God. The hands are God's omnipotence. Man ruleth and changeth all things with his hands. The head is heaven. The whole body to the neck is the round circle or sphere of the stars. The head containeth the five senses wherein the stars and the elements qualify. Open here the eyes of spirit and behold God thy Creator!"

   The esoteric Mason becomes truly a "mystic citizen of an eternal kingdom." The true Mystery teachings flourished in all their splendour in King Solomon's Temple of the Holy City. When Christ Jesus, the Flower of Nazareth, came, His true and qualified disciples received also from Him "the perfect instruction." This work was preserved in the Lodges until the sixth century A.D., from which time the true Initiates by reason of intense and violent persecution were compelled to retire and continue their work in secret, Palestine, however, remained their place of refuge and the center of the purest and highest Mysteries. After the present general upheavals, the world will become stabilized largely through the potency radiating from these Christian Mysteries which are still centered in the Holy Land. Palestine will be a refuge for the remnant of Judah, but only to the extent that it is centered with Israel in Christ.

   Arthur Edward Waite sums up the whole matter very beautifully in his Emblematic Masonry when he writes: "The one great Quest-story of the whole wide world is the seeking and finding of Christ in Whom the Word is found. It is of Patmos and Tabor and Carmel, Amen, world without end."

The Foundation Stone

   The Foundation Stone which is one of the most important of an Masonic symbols (without it no permanent Temple can be erected), is of equal importance as the Foundation Stone in the building of the perfected body temple. To recapitulate briefly:

   The Foundation Stone, which is one of the most important of all Masonic symbols, is no less necessary to the building of the perfect body than it is to the construction of a temple. This Stone, according to sacred legend, was as we have previously recorded, taken from Paradise by Adam at the time of the expulsion. He bequeathed it to Seth, and so down through the generations of the patriarchs (including Enoch) it passed until it came into the hands of Noah, who dedicated it upon Mt. Ararat after the Deluge. Here Abraham found it, and it was this stone which Jacob set up for a pillar to commemorate his vision of the "Ladder." Moses carried it out of Egypt at the Exodus, and Solomon discovered it in the excavations for the first Temple. This Stone bore the form of a perfect cube and engraved upon it was the Ineffable Name of God. This name became the Lost Word of the people during the dark days of the Babylonian Captivity. To the peoples' forgetfulness of this Stone and its sacred Word was attributed the eventual demolition of the Temple, the dispersion of the tribes, and at last the complete destruction of Jerusalem.

   It was beneath Mt. Calvary that Enoch constructed his nine-arched vault, and when the Christ hung upon the cross, whose site was just over the entrance to Enoch's Mystic Path, in His divine agony He whispered again and again this magic Lost Word, but those about Him were unable to comprehend its meaning.

   During the construction of the Second Temple the Foundation Stone, with sacred ceremonies, was placed in the Center of the Most Holy Place where it was overshadowed by the forces of Dan and Ashur. Dan and Ashur are the tribes correlating to Scorpio and Libra respectively, and we recall that the supreme annual feast of the Post-Exilic Hebrews was the Day of Atonement, which in that era occurred when the Autumnal Equinox was in Libra, the sign of the scales, or judgment, bordering on Scorpio. At the Feast of Atonement, the High Priest entered the Holy of Holies, and in this rite he represented the union of the whole people with their God. Concerning this we read in Ezekiel that no heathen might tread the Outer Court of the Temple, no layman the Inner Court, and the Holiest of Holies might not be entered — even by the priest Ezekiel, but only by the Angel who accompanied him.

   A second feature of the Atonement ceremonies was the Rite of the Goat devoted to Azazel, who was a "demon" of the wilderness. When the sins of Israel had been laid upon the scapegoat, he was scourged and driven out into the wilderness, as a sacrifice to Azazel. From the Book of Enoch we learn that Azazel was one of the two leaders of those "Sons of God" who loved the daughters of men, and we are told further that these "daughters" were the exquisitely lovely daughters of Cain. This episode constitutes the Second War in Heaven, and a second angelic Fall. In this dual Rite of Atonement lies the reason for, and the power of, Christ's Sacrifice on Golgotha.

   We have, therefore, a twofold line of descent from the fallen Angels: First, from Samael, who according to legend seduced Eve and was the father of Cain, who was thus semi-divine; second, the descendants of the Daughters of Cain, who were again the semi-divine children of angelic fathers.

   All of these rites and traditions converge upon an identical esotericism, that of the "fiery Stone," inscribed upon with the Great Name of God, which is the Foundation of the created world. Note that the cube, when projected upon a plane, forms the Latin cross, or "measure of a man."

   In the Degree of the Knight of the Ninth Arch (Royal Arch Degree), a beautiful and sublime symbology has been built around the sacred Stone and its wonderful meanings. The key to this inner meaning is centered in that most magnificent, most familiar, and at the same time most far-reaching symbol of all Masonry, the Letter G. This letter rightly stands, as the candidate is told, for God. The Mystic Mason understands also that it means generation which is but a different name for God.

   To transmute the forces of God that manifest through generation into the regenerated forces of the God-man is the ideal toward which man has striven all through the ages. It was Adam's (generic humanity's) failure to live in terms of that ideal that caused early humanity to lose Eden. Noah was given this teaching as the Foundation Stone for the then new (Aryan) race. Abraham and Moses promulgated its truth in their inner schools. Upon this knowledge Enoch constructed his Arch and Solomon his Temple. The people's failure to accept and live it caused the Exodus' and the forty years' wandering, as well as the seventy years' Captivity. The Supreme Teacher of this truth sacrificed Himself upon the cross, which is an accurate symbol of man's fall into matter by reason of his lack of understanding of regeneration.

   Every Mystery School in the world is and has been centered in this esoteric thesis. In the Egyptian Masonic legend of the murder of Osiris by the evil Typhon the same theme is developed. Isis (the high feminine, or chastity) succeeded in recovering all the dismembered parts of the body except those under the rulership of Scorpio, which had been eaten by a huge fish. In other words this body temple of man will continue to experience all the vicissitudes to which the flesh is heir until he becomes wise enough to center himself in regeneration. Astrologically, Scorpio governs both the organs of generation and regeneration, and thus beautifully the Masonic legend places the Foundation Stone of the Restored Temple under the ministrations of Scorpio, together with those of Libra, the sign of spiritual discrimination.

   It is significant that in the time of early Temple builders the letter G was in the form of a square.

   In the Knight of the Ninth Arch another symbol is introduced which is of paramount importance in the building of the perfect body temple. This is the CAPSTONE, which signifies completion of the Great Work, as the Foundation Stone represents its right beginning. The Rite of the Ninth Arch must always be performed in a New Temple. When the Capstone is completed, man has learned to build the new body "not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."

   As the Mystic Mason learns to rise higher above the illusions and mists of the old sense life, he purifies and sensitizes his body so that it becomes a new channel for the forces of spirit, to an extent undreamed of in the old days of purely animalistic living, until, at length, the body is no longer a prison house for the soul. New vistas open, wider channels of service and investigation present themselves in fairer and more tenuous realms of life. The candidate becomes the Initiate. His Quest has brought him into the Light. No longer need his emblem be laid away in the Holy of Holies as an ideal for future emulation. He has worked his ideal into a living Reality. He has himself become the Capstone of the Royal Arch.

   Now able to travel at will in his glorious new "body," the temple of the soul, he comprehends the full meaning of King Solomon's words: "But I have built a house of habitation for thee, and a place for thy dwelling forever."

 — Corinne Heline

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Contemporary Mystic Christianity

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