It is a trite saying that "man is of few days and full of trouble." Among all the vicissitudes of life none affects us more powerfully than loss of health. We may lose fortunes or friends with comparative equanimity, but when health fails and death threatens, the strongest falter; realizing human impotence we are more ready to turn to divine power for succor than at other times. Therefore, the office of spiritual adviser has always been closely associated with healing.
Among primitive humanity the priest was also "medicine man." In ancient Greece, Aesculapius was particularly sought by those in need of healing. The church followed in his steps. Certain Catholic orders have continued the endeavor to assuage pain during the centuries which have intervened between that day and the present. In times of sickness the "good father" came as a representative of our Father in Heaven, and what he lacked in skill was made up by love and sympathy — if he was indeed a true and holy priest — and by the faith engendered in the patient by the priestly office. His care of the patient did not commence at the sick bed, nor was it terminated at recovery. The gratitude of the patient toward the physician was added to the veneration felt for the spiritual adviser, and as a consequence the power of the priest to help and uplift his erstwhile patient was enormously increased, and the tie between them was closer than possible where the offices of spiritual and medical adviser are divorced.
It is patent that the art of medicine has reached a stage of efficiency which could not have been attained save by devotion to that one particular end and aim. The safeguards of sanitary laws, the extinction of insect carriers of disease are monumental testimonies to the value of modern scientific methods. Thus it may seem as if all were well and there were no need of further effort. But in reality, until humanity as a whole enjoys perfect health, there is no issue more important than the question, How may we attain and maintain perfect health?
In addition to the regular school of surgery and medicine, which depends exclusively upon physical means for the care of disease, other systems have sprung up which depend entirely on mental healing. It is the custom of organizations which advocate "mind cure," "nature cure," and other like methods to hold experience meetings and publish journals with testimonials from grateful supporters who have benefited by their treatments, and if physicians of the regular school did likewise there would be no lack of similar testimonies of their efficiency.
The opinion of thousands is of great value, but it does not prove anything, for thousands may hold an opposite view. Occasionally a single man may be right and the rest of the world wrong, as when Galileo maintained that the Earth moves. Today the whole world has been converted to the opinion for which he was persecuted as a heretic. We maintain that as man is a composite being, cures are successful in proportion as they remedy defects on the physical, moral, and mental planes of being.
As the great majority of people do not make a distinction between curing and healing, it may be well to explain the difference which is primarily one of cooperation or the lack thereof. One person may undertake to "cure" another by massage or drugs; the patient in either of these cases is passive as the clay that is being molded by the potter. There is no doubt that under such treatment trouble may disappear and the person be made well, but this is only a temporary relief; he has not received the proper appreciation of the underlying cause of his disease, he does not understand that the illness was a consequence of breaking the laws of Nature, and is therefore very liable to go and do the same things over again with the result that his malady returns. A "cure" is a physical process. Healing is radically different; there the sufferer is always required to cooperate both spiritually and physically with the healer.
To make this clear we can do no better than view the life and work of our great Leader, the Christ. When people came to Him to be healed they did not expect a physical treatment, but knew that relief would be given through the power of the Spirit. They had unlimited confidence in Him, and that this was essential we see from the incidents recorded in the thirteenth chapter of Matthew where He is said to have gone among the people with whom Jesus, the original owner of the body, had dwelt in early youth. They saw only the outward man: "Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph; are not his brethren with us?" etc. They believed that nothing great could come out of Nazareth, and according to their faith it was done unto them, for we read that "He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief."
But faith without works is dead, and in every case where Christ healed anyone, this person had to do something; he had to cooperate actively with the great Healer before his cure could be accomplished. He said, "Stretch forth thy hand," and when the man did so the hand was healed; to another, "Take up thy bed and walk," and when he did so the malady disappeared; to the blind, "Go and bathe in the pool of Siloam"; to the leper, "Show thyself to the Priest, offer your gifts," etc. In every case there was active cooperation upon the part of the one to be healed, which helped the Healer. They were simple requirements, but such as they were they had to be complied with, so that the spirit of obedience could aid the Healer's work. When Naaman came to Elijah and thought that this prophet was going to come out with a great show of magic and ceremony to dispel the leprous spots from his body he was doomed to disappointment. And when the prophet sent word to him, "Go and wash seven times in the river Jordan," he was enraged to the point of crying out, "Have we not great rivers in Assyria and why should I go and wash in the Jordan? What nonsense!" He lacked the spirit of submission which is absolutely necessary in order that the work may be done, and it is safe to say that had he persisted he would have not received the healing of his malady. Neither would nay of those who were healed by the Christ have been affected unless they had obeyed and had done as they were bidden. This is a law of Nature that is absolutely sure. It is disobedience that brings disease. Obedience, no matter whether that involves washing in the Jordan or stretching forth a hand, shows a change of mind, and the man is therefore in a position to receive the healing balm which may come through the Christ, or through a healer of one kind or another as the case may be. Primarily, in all cases, the healing force comes from our Heavenly Father, Who is the Great Physician.
These are the three great factors in healing: first, the power, from our Father in Heaven; next, the healer, and third, the obedient mind of the patient upon which the power of the Father can act through the healer in such a way as dispel all bodily ills.
Let us now understand that the whole universe is pervaded with the power of the Father, always available to cure all ills of whatever nature; that is the great certainty.
The healer is the focus, the vehicle through which the power is infused into the patient's body. If he is a proper instrument, consecrated, harmonious, really and truly in tune with the Infinite, there is no limit to the wonderful works of the Father which may be performed through him when opportunity presents a patient of a properly receptive and obedient mind.
Among all the foolish and fallacious nonsense which has been circulated concerning the Rosicrucians during the past centuries, there is one great truth: "Members of the Order aim to heal the sick and have superior means of accomplishing this benevolent purpose." Earlier religious orders have sought to advance spiritually by castigating and abusing the body, but the Rosicrucians exhibit the tenderest care for this instrument. There are two reasons for their healing activities. Like all other earnest followers of Christ they are longingly looking for "the day of the Lord." They know that Lucifer, the false Light of Lemuria, implanted passion, inaugurating begettal in sin and caused sorrow, pain and death; also that Christ, the true Light of the coming New Galilee, inaugurated the Immaculate Conception, and preached the gospel of redemption from sin by Love. A new race is to be cradled here in the Western World, and generative purity is therefore the watchword of the disciple in this part of the world. A new race is to be loved into existence, and thus the ills that now afflict humanity through generations of begettal in passion will cease; even Death will at last be overcome in the new dispensation, because the ethereal purity of the bodies will obviate the necessity for renewal.
While there is much definite information about that age in the Bible, one point is shrouded in insoluble mystery: "The day knoweth no man, not even the Angels in Heaven, nor the Son." Christians in all ages since the Gospel was first preached have yearned for that day when the Sons of Light shall be manifest. The Father alone, being the Highest Initiate among the Lords of Mind, is able to foresee the time when the separative, self-seeking mind will yield to the self-negating, unifying spirit of love. One point is very clear, however: It will be just as impossible for anyone to live under the conditions of the New Heaven and the New Earth who has not the properly constituted body called "Wedding Garment" in the Bible, as it was for the degenerate Atlanteans who lacked lungs to breathe when the atmospheric change came.
It is a scientific fact that the state of the blood affects the mind and vice versa. A sound body is therefore indispensable to sane mentality. Only a sane mind can transcend passion; only a sound body can generate another that is as pure. The Rosicrucians have aimed to heal the body that it may harbor a sane mind and a pure love, for each conception under those conditions is a step toward the day of the Lord for which we all long so ardently. This is the reason for the healing activities, and it is the meaning of our motto, "A Sane Mind, a Soft Heart, a Sound Body." It has been written in various works that the members of the Order took a vow to heal others free of charge. This statement is somewhat garbled. The lay brothers took a vow to minister to all according to the best of their ability free of charge. That vow included healing, of course, in the case of such men as Paracelsus, who had ability in that direction; by the combination method of physical remedies applied under favorable stars and spiritual counsel he was highly successful. Others were not suited to be healers but labored in other directions, but all were alike in one particular — they never charged for their services, and they labored in secret without flourish of trumpet or sound of drum.
Christ gave two commands to His messengers: "Preach the Gospel" (of the coming Age) and "Heal the sick." One is as binding as the other, and, for the foregoing reasons, as necessary. To comply with the second command the Elder Brothers have evolved a system of healing which combines the best points in the various schools of today with a method of diagnosis and treatment as certain as it is simple, and thus a long step has been taken to lift the art of healing from the sands of experiment to the rock of exact knowledge.
It is a true, good, and valid reason when we say that we want to help others for Christ's sake. He is now immured in the Earth, groaning and travailing and waiting for liberation. Pain and sickness are caused by transgression of the laws of life, therefore they crystallize the dense body, give a firmer grip on the vital body and retard the day of our liberation, as well as His. By helping the sick to attain health and by teaching them to live in harmony with the laws of life so that they may maintain health, we are hastening the day of His coming. May God bless our efforts and strengthen our hands in the Good Work.
Our method of healing is not altogether a spiritual matter. We use physical means wherever it is possible. There are times even when we send our patients to a doctor in order that they may obtain quick relief from him by a certain treatment which we cannot give as promptly by other methods. Also, the diet of patients receives careful attention, for naturally, as the body is built up of physical substances, we are giving medicine by using the right food. But in addition, healing is carried on by the Elder Brothers through a band of Invisible Helpers whom they are instructing.
These Invisible Helpers are Probationers who during the daytime live a worthy life of helpfulness and thereby for themselves or earn for themselves the privilege of being helpful through the instrumentality of the Elder Brothers at night. These Probationers are gathered together in bands according to their temperaments and ability. They are under instruction of other Probationers who are doctors, and all of them work under the guidance of the Elder Brothers, who naturally are the moving Spirits in the whole work.
The system of forming and organizing a band of Invisible Helpers is accomplished by the use of the effluvia from their vital bodies. The first of this is obtained at the time when the Probationer signs his obligation and it is renewed every day when he makes the record upon his or her report blank. So long as he is faithful and lives the life of purity and service it forms an unbroken link between him and the Elder Brothers. Each group of healers usually consists of twelve Probationers besides their instructor and they are generally taken from the same locality because the night is the same for them all. It would not be feasible to group one living in Australia with one living in Alaska for one would be going about his or her daily work while the other is taking his or her nightly rest. But people taken from almost anywhere in North or South America spend about the identical hours in rest and recuperation and these Probationers are then grouped according to their rising signs so that they may form a complete circle.
Regarding the system used to find those who have written to Headquarters for help, the same method is followed as in finding the Probationers. That is to say, applicants for relief are required to write the letter of request with pen and ink. Thus the paper is impregnated with a part of their vital body and this is taken from the letter by the Elder Brothers. It contains an accurate gauge of the condition of the individual from whom it came and it also acts as an "open sesame" to the Helpers who are given charge of this case. Through that they have free access to his body, and a considerable number of patients who come for healing write that they have both seen and felt the Helpers working both inside and outside their bodies. As the condition of the patient changes so does the record. Therefore the patients are required to write with pen and ink a few words every week and mail it to Headquarters. Thus the Elder Brothers are in constant touch with their condition and are able to direct intelligently the work of restoration to health.
This work never ceases. It is continuous, as the Sun is always absent from a part of the globe and the Probationers in that part are active in the work of healing and helping during the hours of bodily rest.
Anatomically man belongs to the mammals, whose blood corpuscles are not nucleated. The nuclei found in the blood of lower animals are the vantage ground of the Group Spirits, but the higher animals are so far advanced upon the road to individualization that their blood is free from this influence. In the fetus where the mother acts as a Group Spirit for the first few weeks, she nucleates the blood; but as soon as the Ego begins work, the first thing it does is to disintegrate these nucleated blood corpuscles, and at the time of the quickening not a single such corpuscle remains. The Ego is master of its vehicle, a heritage which none may take from it under any pretense whatever. To do so is black magic, whether the person knows it or not, and though the benevolent motive would of course have a certain mitigating effect in another direction, the fact nevertheless remains that one is upon dangerous ground when attempting to meddle with the blood of anyone who does not desire it and who has not asked for such treatment.
There is only one exception to this rule. Children until the age of puberty are, so to say, a part of their parents, because there is stored in the thymus gland an essence of the parental blood which the child uses in manufacturing its own supply during the years of childhood, while the desire body is in the course of gestation. As time goes on the supply in the thymus gland becomes smaller and smaller and the child attains more and more to a realization of its own individuality. By the time the thymus gland has disappeared the desire body has matured sufficiently to take part in the alchemy of transmuting the Saturnine skeleton into the Jupiterian vehicle which will thus incorporate the essence of the present physical body. Interference with the blood stops this process; therefore it is only until the time of puberty that the parent may act for the child in giving the ether which admits the Invisible Helper.
The greatest drawback to our healing activity comes from the negligence of patients. Our requirements are very simple. We only ask them to write once a week with pen and ink, so that the etheric effluvia coming from the hand during writing may furnish our Invisible Helpers with a key of admission to the patient's system. But simple as is this rule, some fail to write. Here is a case where a person who had for many years had vertebrae displaced and who was cured by our treatment, though osteopaths, chiropractors, and several others who had tried, had found it impossible to replace these vertebrae. The poor man was therefore in constant pain and sick in bed most of the time, entirely unable to work. The treatment of our Invisible Helpers replaced the vertebrae, and they are still in place. The man went to work and it seemed wonderful. But becoming so elated at the idea that he was so entirely free, he disregarded our instruction to keep on writing, so that our Invisible Helpers might have the chance to keep his vertebrae in place for a sufficient length of time till they would stay put. Now comes the following letter showing that we were right in requesting him to do this, and he did wrong not to obey. He says: "A short time ago I wrote that I was cured, and would discontinue my weekly letters, but I see now that I have made a big mistake. Since then my back has pained me nearly all the time and I am getting round-shouldered again, though the vertebrae are in place where the injury was. It seems as though I am asking a lot of you to take this up the second time, but I did not realize the influence the Invisible Helpers had over me and how much I was dependent on them."
In the coming of the Christ to Earth we have an analogy between it and the administering of the Spiritual Panacea, according to the law, "As above, so below." There is in every little cell of the human body a separate cell life, but over and above that is the Ego which directs and controls all cells so that they act in harmony. During certain protracted illnesses the Ego becomes so intent upon the suffering that it ceases to vivify the cells fully; thus bodily ailment breeds mental inaction and it may become impossible to throw off disease without a special impulse to dispel the mental fog and start the cell activities anew. That is what the spiritual Panacea does. As the inrushing Christ Life on Golgotha commenced to dispel the shell of fear bred by inexorable law that hung like a pall about the Earth; as it started the millions of human beings upon the path of peace and good will, so also when the Panacea is applied does the concentrated Christ Life therein contained rush through the patient's body and infuse each cell with a rhythm that awakens the imprisoned Ego from its lethargy and gives back life and health.
In order to describe the Panacea an experience of the author will be related: A substance was shown to him in the Temple of the Rosicrucians on a certain memorable night, with which the Universal Spirit could be combined as readily as great quantities of ammonia combine with water. Three spheres were suspended one above the other in the center of the Temple, the middle sphere being about half way between the floor and the ceiling. It was much larger than the other two, which hung one above and one below. Inside the large central sphere was a smaller container which held a number of packages filled with that substance. When the Brothers had placed themselves in certain positions, when the harmony of certain music had prepared the way, suddenly the three globes began to glow with the three primary colors, blue, yellow, and red. To the vision of the writer it was plain how during the incantation of the formula the container having in it the before mentioned packages became aglow with a spiritual essence that was not there before. Some of these were later used by the Brothers with instantaneous success. Before them the crystallizing particles enveloping the spiritual centers of the patient scattered like magic, and the sufferer awoke to a recognition of physical health and well-being.
This article was adapted from "Rosicrucian Principles of Health and Healing," page 97-110, by Max Heindel.