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Consciousness Closes on the Universal Light

   The Cherubim guard the way that leads to the Tree of Life. With a flaming sword which turns in every direction, they stand to the east of the Garden of Eden.

   They are the Lords of Cancer who awakened the Christ Principle in infant humanity. That principle, the creative life force in man, is now manifesting largely through the life ether. This ether is the avenue for forces that make for perpetuation of form through physical generation. In it are the powers which, when transmuted, build another and a higher vehicle, the soul body, wherein the Christ is born within. When this celestial body has been developed, man will be able to re-enter the Garden of Eden; or, as it is called in Revelation, the New Jerusalem. Fallen Eve is then "the woman clothed with the sun."

   The Cherubim, having awakened in man that aspect of spirit which expresses itself in the creative force, are wardens of the seed of life. This they continue to guard with the flaming sword of truth until man respects its sacredness. Then will a regenerated humanity arise. Being liberated from fear, want, discord and death, it will be able to enter into the joyous fullness of life that the Lord hath prepared for those who love Him.

   Before the Fall all life existed in a consciousness of universality. Every living thing knew itself as a part of every other. Fear was unknown because there was nothing outside of an all-embracing unity of which to be afraid. There was a close subjective communion between all parts. Man worked understandingly from the life side with animals which he recognized as his younger brothers. He contacted their Group Intelligences and worked with them toward the fulfillment of their archetypal designs.

   But with the rising mists of matter that darkened human consciousness after the Fall, this inner sense of unity was gradually lost. A sense of separation, with its attendant conflicts and consequent suffering, followed. In regard to this change that came with the Fall, the Apocrypha states that "on that day was closed the mouth of all beasts and cattle and of birds and of whatever walketh and of whatever moveth so that they could no longer speak, for they had spoken one with another with one lip and one tongue."

   It was not in the divine plan that cruelty and ferocity should enter into the nature of man or beast, or that they should prey on one another. This state is of man's own doing, his own destructive thoughts and actions extending to, and finding expression in, the lower kingdom. Being closely associated with man, but of lesser development, that kingdom is negative to his influence. It absorbs and gives back to man whatever he releases into the atmosphere. Since this includes so much that is cruel, greedy, grasping and sensuous, it is inevitable that there will be wild beasts and poisonous plants, discord and strife throughout the whole of man's environment.

Cain and Abel — Two Paths of Attainment

   Adam and Eve had eaten of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. Samael, the Lucifer Spirit, had taught them how to use their creative powers at will, whereas hitherto the begetting of children had been a holy sacrament taking place only at times when planetary conditions were propitious, and under the subjective guidance of Jehovah and his Angels. When generation was thus performed in strict accord with the laws of life, the bodies generated were free from the taint of disease, decay and death.

   This was no longer true. "Eve bare Cain," the first-born, and "Cain slew Abel," the second born of a union consummated under the promptings of the Luciferian-awakened impulse and in immature human knowledge. But knowledge there was. This is indicated in the name given to the first-born, Cain, meaning possessor. He was a tiller of the ground and first in the line of human artificers. Abel was a keeper of sheep, a faithful shepherd of that which Jehovah had placed in his keeping. Since Cain directed his activity toward material pursuits and the creation of things independently conceived, while Abel was content to devote himself to whatever had been devised and created by the Lord, Jehovah had respect unto the offering which Abel brought to the altar, but "unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect."

   In terms of consciousness, the above incident may be interpreted as signifying that when the spirit entered into materiality (Cain), it slew the spiritual awareness (Abel) which the race had hitherto possessed. This led to an illusion of separateness and to the tragedy that follows failure to realize fundamental unity as conceived in the phrase "the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man." This loss of universal kinship with all that lives makes of man a fugitive and a vagabond, a wanderer from the presence of the Lord, in the land of Nod, or darkness. The mark of Cain borne by humanity is consciousness centered in the human mind rather than in spirit. Mentality, by its very nature, is separative. When man lives solely in a consciousness engendered thereby, violence and death are inescapable.

   When unable to recognize the unity of each with all, man's first consideration is personal advantage — a state of mind in which he rejects responsibility for being his brother's keeper. Living in this sense of separateness, he fears lest others, living as much apart from the whole as he himself, will rob him of what he has. Pursued by these fears;he believes that the hand of every man is against him.

   That this condition is a temporary phase through which the human race is passing is indicated by the birth of another son to Adam and Eve. His name was Seth, meaning appointed. "For God," said Eve, "hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew."

   The gradual emergence of the race from the darkened consciousness into which it had fallen is further indicated by the son born to Seth. His name was Enos, meaning awakened. With this quickening, "then began man to call upon the name of the Lord."

   By reason of this semi-divine descent, having been fathered by Samael, Cain represents the Path of Fire. Abel, son of Adam and Eve, thus the progeny of human parentage, typifies the Path of Water. The keywords of Cain's inheritance are originality, initiative, ambition and pride. The keywords of Abel's heritage are faith, vision and reliance on unseen or divine guidance. Every person may be classed under one or the other of these two divisions, for all are developing characteristics of either Cain or of Abel (Seth). Institutionally, they manifest in the life of humanity as the State and the Church, respectively.

   Mystery Schools, designed to meet the needs of the most advanced members of the race, have been formed in accordance with this same twofold classification. The Egyptian Mysteries were under the Luciferian or fiery impulse. As a signature of the fiery Path of Wisdom which they followed, their Hierophants wore a serpent band around their foreheads. This School worked with mental faculties and for development and control of the will.

   The Mysteries of India were evolved under the power of the heart and the magic of love. They belong, therefore, to the Sethian line.

   The Old Testament Schools, being founded by Jehovah, also followed the Path of Seth. The work done in these Schools was carried over into the New Testament Dispensation, and out of that Ageless Wisdom there developed the Mysteries of the early Church.

   The Masonic School traces its descent along the Path of Fire. Its followers are builders who live by works. Since the Church travels the Path of Water, with faith as its keyword, we find herein the cosmic reason for the deep feud between the two institutions. It goes back to the time when Jehovah had not respect to the offerings of Cain, but blessed and prospered that of Abel.

   Occupational pursuits of followers of the two Paths have been as marked in their differences as have the spiritual characteristics and the predictions as to method of development. Cain works at the forge; Abel in the fields. The one shapes matter; the other tends life. Cain sets out to mold his own destiny; Abel accepts the destiny provided for him.

   Cain, head of the line of Fire, was a tiller of the ground. His sons, centered in mind and bent on working out their own salvation, are struggling upward through the darkness of materiality. Not until their minds have become spiritualized will they find again the Light for which their restless, immortal spirit is ever seeking.

   Abel, head of the line of Water, tended flocks. His sons, centered in the heart, keep the mind receptive to divine guidance. The sheep of Abel's flocks symbolize the hidden wisdom. Because his sons live closer to this than do the children of Cain, it is easier for them to rend the veil hanging between the world of matter and the kingdom of spirit; easier for them to see Reality clearly instead of as "through a glass darkly."

   S. H. Hooke, Professor of Old Testament Studies at King's College, London, makes an interesting historical contribution to the subject of Cain and Abel, and their fundamental divergencies. He calls attention to the deep-seated aversion existing before the Christian era between agriculturists who raised cattle and the shepherds. He states that up until about 2000 B.C. it was the custom each year during the summer, in what is now northern Syria, to sacrifice a shepherd and let his flowing blood make fertile the meadows for that year. Professor Hooke believes that this ancient conflict between tillers of the soil and shepherds was the origin of the Cain and Abel episode as recorded in Genesis.

   Professor Hooke also points out the significant facts that Egypt produced an abundance of bull gods; that golden calves were erected to Baal and Moloch but that there can be found no reference of any kind to a sheep divinity. Genesis also states that the Egyptians abominated shepherds.

   Astrology again offers a key to an understanding of these facts. The Egyptians were living in the Taurean Age when the Sun by precession was passing through Taurus, sign of the bull. When the Sun entered Aries, sign of the ram, the sheep supplanted the bull as the predominant symbol of the Age and the religion which arrived with it. Professor Hooke substantiates these facts in the statement: "Egypt despised the sheep men, but gradually the tide turned until by the time of the New Testament the sheep raisers were in the ascendan cy. The Saviour says, 'Feed my lambs,' and was called 'the Good Shepherd.' A couple of thousand years previously that would have been an insult."

   An important key to progressive development of certain attributes in man is found in the study of the genealogies of Cain and Abel. The meaning of the names points to salient qualities characterizing each of the two lines of descent.

Sons of Cain: Sons of Seth:
Fire Water
Masonic School Churchmen
Statescraft Priestcraft
Works Faith (blind)
Cattlemen Docile, lack of initiative
Positive Path Sheepherders
Head development Negative Path
Occultists Heart development
Man moulds his own destiny
Original effort
Accepts the destiny provided for him
Sons of Samael and Eve Human progeny of human parents
Semi-divine Blind belief instead of knowledge
Melchizedek — High Priest of Old Testament Dispensation. Christ Jesus — High Priest of New Testament Dispensation.

   The inharmony that now exists between the principles of Fire and Water, which is reflected in external nature in the incompatibility between the same mystical elements, is destined to pass. Unity will be restored. The priest and king are one. Love and reason will be crowned triumphant within the citadel of the illumined soul.

   Adah, meaning ornament, and Zillah, meaning shadow, are representative of the higher self and the personal self, respectively. To Zillah was born Tubal-cain, "an instructor of every artificer in brass and iron." To Adah was born Jabal, "the father of such as dwell in tents, and of such as have cattle." In these two lines of descent are perpetuated the two main streams into which humanity flows. They are the same as those represented by Cain and Abel.

   Lamech, like Cain whose line continues with him, was guilty of taking human life. Having elected to work out his salvation on the path of material pursuit, he encounters the sorrows that this inevitably entails. With their spiritual consciousness temporarily veiled, such persons fail to recognize the unity of life. Out of the clash of opposing personal ambitions results the conflicts and the violence to which the race has long been heir. So Lamech, like his forefather Cain, slew a man. Addressing himself to his wives (spiritual principles), he confesses his crime and exclaims lamentingly, "I have slain a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt." This is the cry of wounded, suffering humanity. Not until it learns that no one lives for self alone and that he who lives by the sword shall perish by it, and adopts the way of life whereby each lives for all, will fear and violence be removed and that age-old hurt be healed.

   The above passage refers to the union of the Lucifer spirits with early humanity. This appears directly from a passage in the Apocrypa which states that "Against the angels He was exceedingly wroth, and He gave commandment to root them out, of all their dominion, and He made them to be bound in the depths of the earth."

   The offspring of these unnatural unions were forbidding-looking creatures, resembling neither men nor Angels. Being monstrosities in nature, they were doomed to early destruction. The Flood came and destroyed them all.

   Corruptions that had entered into Earth life were the result of the Fall. Legends perpetuate this truth in teaching that there were no destructive forces in nature before that event. There were no wild beasts; thorns, nettles, and poisonous plants were unknown. In this connection it is illuminating to consider that the type of plants named are, as a class, ruled by Scorpio, the sign governing death through degeneration.

   The Apocrypha also deals with the evils that had become rampant at this time. In it we read: "And lawlessness increased on the earth, all of them corrupted their ways and orders, and they began to devour each other. All flesh corrupted its way alike, men and cattle and beasts and birds and everything that walketh on the earth."

 — Corinne Heline


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