Clothed With The Sun
Being The Book Of The Illuminations
Anna Bonus Kingsford

~ Section 4, Lections 31 - 40 ~

"Illuminations is the Light of Wisdom, whereby man perceiveth heavenly secrets. Which Light is the Spirit of God within the man, showing unto him the things of God" ~Illuminations No. 11.

No. 31: Concerning The Manichęanism of Paul[1]

AT this moment I hear a surge of waters. Out of the midst of them a voice seems to speak to me. This is what it says:

"Many years before Paul wrote there arose a sect called the Manichęans. The founder of that sect, like the founder of the Epicureans, was inspired by US; but they, like the Epicureans, understood not the nature of sin. The founder of the Manichęans, whom we call Felix, saw this, that evil is the result of creation; but his disciples understood that all matter is evil. In this alone they erred. And Paul, following his reason, but uninspired, perceived only the doctrine of the disciples. It is true, then, as the founder of the Manichęans saw, that evil is the result of creation, but not that matter is evil. He who among you possesses the most vivid imagination, can project upon the retina palpable rings of his thought. Thus it is with Deity. I have said already that matter is the intensification of Idea, and that evil is the result of materialisation.[2] You have asked me, Why, then, did God create? I perceive that God created by force of will; and that, willing, God imparted to every thought the power of will which, but for the limitation, could not have existed. God, therefore, is so much the richer by the will of the thought which He projects."

1. Paris, July 23, 1877. Spoken in trance. Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. i, p. 185.

2. Comp. No. XIX, Part 2.

No. 32: Concerning The Gospels: 
Their Origin and Composition

I AM looking at the inside of the Serapeum at Alexandria. The temple is connected with a library which, as I see it, is still there, neither dispersed nor burnt, but filled with manuscripts,--mostly rolls upon sticks. I see a council of many men sitting at a table in the room of the library, and I see a number of names, as Cleopatra, Marcus Antonius, and others. This is called the second library of Alexandria, the former having been destroyed under Julius Caesar. The nucleus of this one was the gift of Antony to Cleopatra, who added to it and improved it immensely, till it contained all the existing literature of the world; and--why, they are deliberately concocting Christianity out of the books there! and, so far as I can see, the Gospels are little better than Ovid's Metamorphoses (historically, I mean),--so deliberately are they making up the new religion[2] by replanting the old on the Jewish system.

Write down these names and the dates which are specially shown me. Theophilus, patriarch of Alexandria, and Ambrosius. A.D. 390, B.C. 286. This last is the date at which the library was first of all got together. A.D. 390[3] is the date of the chief destruction of the documents out of which the new religion was made. If they could be recovered we should have absolute proof of its concoction from Hindū, Persian, and other originals;--the interpolations, extracts, and alterations proving this. They show, too, that the name first adopted for the typical man was more like Krishna, and that Jesus was a later choice,[4] adopted at Jewish suggestion, in order to suit a Jewish hero. The system[5] was long under formation, and it took all that time to perfect.[6] Every detail of the Gospel history is invented, the number of the apostles, and all the rest. Nothing is historical in the sense supposed.

I see the Serapeum destroyed;--not only the library but the temple, so fearful were they of leaving any trace of the concoction. It was destroyed by Christians at the instigation especially of Theodosius, Ambrosius, and Theophilus.[7] Their motive was a mixed one, each of the leaders having a different aim. The object of the concoctors themselves was to sustain and continue the ancient faith by transplanting it to a new soil, and engrafting it on Judaism. The object of Theophilus was to make the new religion the enemy and successor of the old, by making it appear to have an independent basis and origin. Ambrose destroyed the library in order to confute the Arians by leaving it to appear that Christianity had an origin altogether supernatural. The concoctors themselves did not intend it to be regarded as supernatural, but as representing the highest human. And they accordingly fixed and accumulated upon Jesus all that had been told of previous Christs,--Mithras, Osiris, Krishna, Buddha, and others,--the original draft containing the doctrine of the transmigration of souls most explicitly and distinctly.[8] The concoction was undertaken in order to save religion itself from extinction through the prevalence of materialism,--for the times corresponded in this respect exactly to the present. And the plan was to compose out of all the existing systems one new and complete, representing the highest possibilities and satisfying the highest aspirations of humanity.

The great loss, then, is not that of the first but that of the second library of Alexandria. The Serapeum was destroyed by Christians in order to prevent the human origin of their religion from being ascertained. The object was to have it believed that it all centred in one particular actual person, and was not collected and compiled from a multiplicity of sources.

All the conversations in the Gospels were fabricated by the aid of various books in order to illustrate and enforce particular doctrines. I cannot recognise the language of many of the ancient manuscripts used. The Latin ones which I see are all in capitals, and without any division between the words, so that they look like one long word.

I am shown the actual scene of the destruction of the library and dispersion of the books. There is a dreadful tumult. The streets of Alexandria are filled with mobs of people shouting and hastening to the spot. They do not know the real object. They have been told that the library contains the devil's books, which, if allowed to remain, will be the means of destroying Christianity. The noise and tumult are dreadful. I cannot bear it, pray recall me, it hurts me so.[8] It is extraordinary how exactly alike the two times are both politically and religiously. Everything established is breaking up in both; and that which comes out of each is the fuller revelation of the divine Idea of Humanity. All works for us and the new revelation. But the world suffers terribly in the birth. Afterwards things gradually become much better.

In explanation of the method of this recovery it may be stated that, according to occult science, every event or circumstance which has taken place upon the planet, has an astral counterpart, or picture, in the magnetic light. So that there are actually ghosts of events as well as of persons. These magnetic existences are the Shades or Manes of past times, circumstances, acts, and thoughts, of which the planet has been the scene, and they can be conjured and evoked. The appearances left on such occasions are but shadows left on the protoplasmic mirror. "This magnetic atmosphere, or astral soul, is called the Anima Mundi, and in it are stored up all the memories of the planet, its past life, its history, its affections and recollections of physical things. The adept may interrogate this phantom-world, and it shall speak for him.[2] It is the cast-off vestment of the planet; yet it is living and palpitating, for its very fabric is spun of psychic substance, and its entire parenchyma is magnetic." See No. XLV; also The Perfect Way, Lecture V, par- 39. Concerning the recovery of the individual memory, see No. XL.    E. M.

1. London, November 6, 1881. Spoken in trance. It was wholly independent of any knowledge or prepossession of either of us,--the subject being quite new to us,--and proved on subsequent research, while going far beyond history, to be in full accordance with history so far as history goes, and also with the results of independent and candid criticism. By "history" is not meant ecclesiastical tradition or invention.    E. M.

2. "The new religion" in this context "implies the systematic endeavour of the Alexandrian Mystics who are credited with the authorship of the Gospels . . . to construct on the basis of the history of Jesus a religion that should represent a symbolical synthesis of the fundamental truths underlying all previous religions" (Letter of E. M. to Light, 1889, p. 507).    S. H. H.

3. The temple was destroyed A.D. 389. The library had never ceased to exist, the Bruchium, at the time of its destruction, having overflowed into the Serapeum. The remnant was far exceeded by Antony's additions from Pergamos, which thus became the virtual nucleus.    E. M.

4. Edward Maitland, referring to this Illumination, says: "According to the view thus given respecting the Christian origines, the rapid decline of faith and advance of materialism had, long before the rise of Christianity, attracted the notice of the initiates of the mysteries, whose headquarters were at Alexandria; and they accordingly sought by means of a reformulation of religious truth, adapted to the altered character of the times to stem the rising torrent of infidelity. All that was necessary in the way of doctrine had been in their possession for ages. Only a fitting subject for its practical exemplification was needed. . . . Such an example was recognised in 'Jesus,' and on him, therefore, they centred all the characteristics predicable of the Man Regenerate, as gathered from previous instances, his history--which was not the physical history of any one Man Regenerate, but the spiritual history of every Man Regenerate--being described in the current mystical terminology, the key to which was lost until restored through Mrs Kingsford" (Letter to Light, 1889, p. 527).    S. H. H.]

5. Not the Gospels (Letter of E. M. to Light, 1889, p. 527).    S. H. H.

6. There is an ambiguity here, owing to the date of the completion of the "concoction" not being specified.    E. M.

(See Letter of E. M. to Light, 1889, p. 527.)

7. Theodosius was Emperor of the eastern division of the Roman Empire. Ambrosius was Archbishop of Milan.    E. M.

8. The reason for the exclusion is not far to seek. "There is no more (birth nor) death for those who are in Christ." Transmigration being the condition of man unregenerate only, the Gospels--which have for their purpose the exhibition of Man Regenerate--had no call to refer to the previous stages of his evolution. It is implied in the account of his birth of a virgin, as see Nos. XXIII, XXIV.    E. M.]

[1. Edward Maitland says that the destruction of the second Alexandrian library was "an event so vividly beheld" by Anna Kingsford, that she suffered severely for several days from the effect of the tumult" (Letter to Light, 1889, p. 528).    S. H. H.

2. As to the trustworthiness of Anna Kingsford's faculty as a means of obtaining historical knowledge, Edward Maitland says that it was "the actual perception of a series of events infallibly impressed by themselves in the astral memory of the planet, and accessible, therefore, to anyone Possessed of the faculty requisite for beholding and reading the record. Such a faculty is as a telescope, which-however it may dim or distort an image in the transmission--can in no wise create such image. And {footnote p. 84} just as we trust a telescope in regard to objects which for their remoteness cannot be verified, on the strength of its accuracy in regard to those which can be verified, so with the faculty of reading in the planet's memory. If we find the instrument trustworthy--as Mrs Kingsford's faculty indisputably was--in regard to things verifiable, we are bound to trust it in regard to things unverifiable" (Letter to Light, 1889, pp. 527-528).    S. H. H.]

Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. ii, pp. 32-33.]

No. 33: Concerning The Actual Jesus [1]

I AM shown the Descent from the Cross. I see Jesus carried by Joseph of Arimathea to his house. The house communicates with a sepulchre; and Jesus is carried to the house where they do something to revive him; for he has swooned rather than died. The clothes are placed in the sepulchre, but not Jesus. I see a rupture of the pericardium, but no fatal injury to the heart. I see plainly that he is not dead. There is no organic lesion; and the wound heals like a simple wound, without suppuration, and by incessant bathing with water. What a lovely climate it is there! and how curious that there should have been a Joseph at both birth and crucifixion!

I am now shown the truth respecting the birth of Jesus. It was most certainly an ordinary birth. I see that quite distinctly. The names are all altered. The birth-name of Jesus is not Jesus, or anything like it. Nothing is real as I have thought it. Very little happens as related. The losing and finding in the temple and the feeding of the five thousand are allegories of which the signification is spiritual. The miracles of the raising of the ruler's daughter and widow's son are real facts. Jesus saw clairvoyantly that the former was not dead, and that the body was uninjured by disease, so that the soul could return to it. For disease is gradual death, and when death occurs through it the soul is set free altogether. In violent or sudden death the soul is slow to get away, and the separation is a long process.

In his own case Jesus instructed his friends beforehand what to do. Joseph of Arimathea was a friend of Mary Magdalen; and she procured for him the requisite balms. I see her running with them through the sepulchre to the house. Jesus was not organically dead at all, for the heart never ceased to beat. He foreknew all the particulars of the event, and provided accordingly.

Nor is Jesus well again on the third day. He is at least ten days under treatment in Joseph's house. Three days is a mystical period, having no relation to actual time. All about him are women except one, the old man. Jesus' name begins with M. I do not see the rest of it.

The perfect adept is he who has attained in himself the Philosopher's Stone of a spirit absolutely quiescent, and is in union with the Divine Will. Being without ardour, sympathy and compassion are for him but other names for justice; and, incapable of anger, his temperament is always cool and equable. I now see faults in Jesus which I did not see before. I mean Jesus as he actually was, and not as he is depicted in the Gospels. They are faults from the adept's point of view. I am shown a passion-flower as the emblem of his character. He sacrificed himself for others, but would have been able to do more had he been more careful,--especially in respect of his diet. His liability to give way continually to indignation or pity prevented him from getting higher. He allowed himself to be drawn too much out of himself to reach the highest possible.

I see him bidding his followers good-bye. It is on a hill which he ascends, and he disappears from their view, lost in cloud or mist. He now becomes a hermit. I see him in the wilderness alone; and there he attains the higher life which constituted his true ascension.

Jesus was able to influence persons at a distance by means of an emanation which he projected from himself; so that it was not necessary for him to be dead when supposed to be seen by Paul.

I now see some one with him on his mountain. It is John, writing down the Apocalypse at the dictation of Jesus. Jesus recollects all his past incarnations, and epitomises them in the Apocalypse, which is the history of his, and of every perfected soul. He is quite an old man at this time.

And now I see the panther's skin of Bacchos, and whence Jesus got the name which has been given him of "Rabbi Ben Panther," and why he was said to be the son of one Panther. It is a play on Pan and theos, and means all the gods. The panther's skin represented the raiment, or attributes, of all the gods, with which Jesus, as a "Son of God," was held to be endowed.

I am shown that there is but little of real value in the Scriptures. They are a mass of clay, comparatively modern, with here and there a bit of gold. The angel whom I saw before, and who told us to burn the Bible,[2] now puts it in the fire, and there comes out a few pages only of matter which is original and divine. All the rest is interpolation or alteration. This is the case with both Old Testament and New, Isaiah and the prophets. Isaiah is a great mixture. It is all fragments from various sources, just thrown together. The book of Genesis is one large parable; and so are all the legends of the wanderings and wars of Israel. All is mixed up with fiction. Moses wrote none of it. And similarly with all the books of the Law and the prophets. All are made up in this manner. Here and there is an original piece of the ancient Revelation, but these are largely interspersed with additions and embellishments, commentaries, and applications to the times by copyists and interpreters. And when the angel told us to put the Bible in the fire, he meant separate the gold from the dross and clay.

As for the gospels, they are almost entirely parabolical. Religion is not historical, and in no wise depends upon past events. For, faith and redemption do not depend upon what any man did, but on what God has revealed. Jesus was not the historical name of the initiate and adept whose story is related. It is the name given him in initiation.[3] His birth, the manner of it, his being lost and found by his parents in the temple, his lying three days in the tomb,--all are parabolic, as also is the story of the Ascension. The Scriptures are addressed to the soul, and make no appeal to the outer senses, The whole story of Jesus is a mass of parables, the things that occurred to him being used as symbols. Thus, the Crucifixion represents the soul's sufferings; the Resurrection its transmutation; and the life and Ascension are a prophecy of what is possible to man.

The real original gospel is that of John. The others came long afterwards, and all were written long after the time of Jesus. Jesus largely wrote the Apocalypse by the hand of John, as he sat with him on the mountain. This was many years after the "Ascension," as his disappearance on the hill was termed. The Apocalypse was rather a recovery than an original composition of Jesus. The gospel life of Jesus is made up of the lives of all the divine teachers before him, and represents the best the world had then, and the best it has in it to be. And it is therefore a prophecy. The recorded life of Jesus epitomised all the teachers before him, and the possibilities of mankind some day to be realised.

The "beautiful feet of the messengers on the mountains" are the first rays of the rising sun of the coming salvation, seen by the watchers from the spiritual heights,--the "shepherds who tend their flocks,"--even their own pure hearts and thoughts. They it is who see from the "hills" the coming God, the demonstration of the divinity that is in humanity, while the world below is wrapped in darkness.

1. London, March 22, 1881. Spoken in trance. See also No. XXIV. Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. ii, p. 4.]

2. In a vision received some time previously.    E. M.

3. See Part II, No. XI, Hymn to Phoibos, v. 9.]

No. 34: Concerning The Previous Lives of Jesus[1]

THIS morning between sleeping and waking I saw myself, together with many other persons, walking with Jesus in the fields round about Jerusalem, and while he was speaking to us, a man approached, who looked very earnestly upon him. And Jesus turned to us and said, "This man whom you see approaching is a seer. He can behold the past lives of a man by looking into his face." Then, the man being come up to us, Jesus took him by the hand and said, "What readest thou?" And the man answered, "I see thy past, Lord Jesus, and the ways by which thou hast come." And Jesus said to him, "Say on." So the man told Jesus that he could see him in the past for many long ages back. But of all that he named, I remember but one incarnation, or, perhaps, one only struck me, and that was Isaac. And as the man went on speaking, and enumerating the incarnations he saw, Jesus waved his right hand twice or thrice before his eyes, and said, "It is enough," as though he wished him not to reveal further. Then I stepped forward from the rest and said, "Lord, if, as thou hast taught us, the woman is the highest form of humanity, and the last to be assumed, how comes it that thou, the Christ, art still in the lower form of man? Why comest thou not to lead the perfect life, and to save the world as woman? For surely, thou hast attained to womanhood." And Jesus answered, "I have attained to womanhood, as thou sayest; and already have I taken the form of woman. But there are three conditions under which the soul returns to the man's form; and they are these:--

"1st. When the work which the Spirit proposes to accomplish is of a nature unsuitable to the female form.

"2nd. When the Spirit has failed to acquire, in the degree necessary to perfection, certain special attributes of the male character.

"3rd. When the Spirit has transgressed, and gone back in the path of perfection, by degrading the womanhood it had attained.

"In the first of these cases the return to the male form is outward and superficial only. This is my case. I am a woman in all save the body. But had my body been a woman's, I could not have led the life necessary to the work I have to perform. I could not have trod the rough ways of the earth, nor have gone about from city to city preaching, nor have fasted on the mountains, nor have fulfilled my mission of poverty and labour. Therefore am I--a woman--clothed in a man's body that I may be enabled to do the work set before me.

"The second case is that of a soul who, having been a woman perhaps many times, has acquired more aptly and readily the higher qualities of womanhood than the lower qualities of manhood. Such a soul is lacking in energy, in resoluteness, in that particular attribute of the Spirit which the prophet ascribes to the Lord when he says, 'The Lord is a Man of war.' Therefore the soul is put back into a man's form to acquire the qualities yet lacking.

"The third case is that of the backslider, who having nearly attained perfection,--perhaps even touched it,--degrades and soils his white robe, and is put back into the lower form again. These are the common cases; for there are few women who are worthy to be women."

I was distinctly and positively assured that the incident thus shown me was one that actually occurred, and that I had borne part in it, though no record of it survives.

1. Paris, February 7, 1880. Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, i, pp. 336-338.

No. 35 Concerning The Holy Family[1]

THERE were two subjects, on which I was desiring light, the explanation of which came to me in curious manner. They were (2) The real signification of the gospel account of the parentage and childhood of Jesus, which we have seen reason to regard as mystical and unliteral; and (3) The faculty of divination by means of the crystal or cup. I had just awoke, and was on the point of drinking my usual cup of coffee, when I was astonished by seeing in the liquid some words, while at the same instant there was flashed upon my mind a full view and explanation of the meaning of the Holy Family; and this is what I received.

"This is[2] the divining cup of Joseph, who represented the spiritual Egypt of Israel's infancy. Egypt was the spiritual father of Jesus, his spiritual mother, Mary, being Israel's pure intuition of God, and "virgin daughter of Sion."[3] Being of Jewish birth, Jesus went into Egypt to be initiated in the sacred mysteries of the country from which, through Moses, the Israelites originally obtained their religion. Of that religion and those mysteries, Jesus, as a Christ, was the product. For their object was the production of a man so perfected through the development of his mind and spirit, as to realise the divine idea of humanity. As a full initiate and adept, a hierarch or "master" of the mysteries, Jesus returned to Judęa to fulfil his mission, receiving at the hands of John--a prophet of the Essenes, who were followers of the same mysteries--his baptism of the Spirit.

Joseph, therefore, represents Egypt--not, however, as denoting the body,[4] but the mind--and is an old man because Egypt was the senior of Israel, and also because, in the evolution of man, the mind precedes the soul in manifestation. And in having him for his foster-father, Jesus is set forth as adopting the wisdom and elder religion of Egypt, to incorporate them with the Jewish. Joseph, moreover, in being elderly and a widower,[1] represents Egypt in respect of its past youth and lost prime. That he is not shown as the true spouse of Mary, or real father of her son, is because, though the mind may aid these by its knowledge and wisdom, the true spouse of the soul is the Divine Spirit, who is thus the true father of the man regenerate.

[1. Paris, October 27, 1878.

2. Meaning, of course, answers to; the effect of a bright surface, as that of a crystal, disc, or fluid, being so to magnetise the sensitive as to render objective any images or ideas previously subjective whether in his own or in another's magnetic atmosphere, or in that of the planet, this last being the anima mundi. See note at end of No. XXXII.    E. M.

3. In this aspect Mary is the soul collective instead of individual only.    E. M.

4. See Part II, No. XIII, Hymn to the Planet-God (6).]

No. 36: Concerning the Metempsychosis or Avatār[2]

METEMPSYCHOSIS means, in its chief aspect, not transmigration which is of souls, but the vivification or illumination of a soul already incarnate by the spirit of a preceding "angel." Thus, the soul of Jesus was overshadowed by the angel of Moses.

The Word, Logos, or Adonai--for they are the same--speaks in the spirit of one or the other of the Gods of the Seven Spheres. He spoke through the Spirit, or God, of the Fourth Sphere--Dionysos or Iacchos--to Noah, Moses, and Jesus. Nevertheless Jesus was not an incarnation of either of these, and when he said, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day," he spoke, in one sense,[3] of his own former birth as Isaac. For Jesus was a transmigration or re-incarnation of the soul of Isaac, and the two names are occultly related.

The metempsychosis constitutes a planetary Avatār. The number of these is variously stated to be ten and twelve. Both are, in a sense, right. There are ten such Avatārs and twelve angels, or messengers, for the first and last are dual or "twins." The pair at the first Avatār were "Eve" and "Adam"--for this also is one sense of the allegory. The Avatārs and their angels have their corresponding signs in the Zodiac, the double ones being represented by the double signs Gemini and Pisces. The latter Avatār, now at hand, will introduce Aquarius, "the sign of the Son of Man in Heaven." Heracles is an epitone {sic} of the "twelve Avatārs of the Lord." Each of his labours--the labours, that is, of the soul--represents a divine operation, and constitutes an Avatār, while its sign in the Zodiac corresponds to the nature of the Labour. These signs represent the twelve gates of the Holy City, or perfected kosmos, and the twelve mysteries of the greater initiation; and the gates are spoken of as pearls, because pearls are found at the sea-bottom, and in oysters, which are difficult to get and hard to open; and the sea represents the Holy Spirit and the soul. In order to obtain these twelve mysteries, one must be at great labour and trouble, risking one's life in diving for them, going down into the sea naked and stripped of all things, finding them in obscurity and darkness, and when they are brought up, requiring a keen blade to open them.

The "twelve apostles" are types of these angels and mysteries. John represents the dual messenger to come. And by a metempsychosis corresponding to that by which the spirit of Moses instructed Jesus, the spirit of John will instruct the angel of the new Avatār. This spirit is dual. For John represents both the Virgin and himself. This is the "mother" referred to by Jesus at his crucifixion. John comprises the feminine as well as the masculine element. His inspiring spirit is the same as that of Daniel. The spirit that informed Noah, Moses, and Jesus is Dionysos (Jehovah Nissi), the God of the planet. And the spirit which informed Daniel and John, and will inform the angel of this century, is Michael, who represents Zeus and Hera, or the planet Jupiter.[1]

That which comes back as a messenger or angel, is not the personal soul of the individual man employed; for that has become transmuted into spirit. Nor does the spirit itself which was in that soul become re-incarnate. That which comes is the overshadowing informing spirit who influenced and spoke through the man in his lifetime, and the man himself also, who has become an angel, or pure spirit, and who no longer needs the body. So that his return is voluntary, and his coming an Avatār. The new Avatār will be of the double or overshadowing spirit of Daniel and John, as well as the spirit which was in those men. For, owing to the union between them, the two--the man's spirit and the divine spirit--are so much one as to be scarcely distinguishable; and the

God speaks through the man's spirit. It is as a tube within a tube. God speaks through the Logos, the Logos through an Elohe, and the Elohe through the perfected spirit of a former prophet. But of this last it is a metempsychoisis, not a transmigration or re-incarnation. That is, the spirit returning informs the spirit of one already incarnate, and who, like John the Baptist, may be thus used without being himself regenerate and "in the kingdom of God."

[1. According to Christian tradition.    E. M.

2. London, March 1881. Spoken in trance.

3. Another sense was Abraham's recognition of the doctrine implied by the term "Christ." In their profoundest and most interior meaning the Patriarchs represent the component elements of the planetary divinity.    E. M.]

[1. See Daniel X, 21, and xii, i, and Apoc. xii, 7. That Michael is by many regarded as the angel of the sun, is probably from their taking him to be the "angel standing in the sun" of Apoc. xix, 17. But even so, the position would not imply more than a temporary presidency.    E. M.]

No. 37: Concerning The Ęon of the Christ[1]

THE Christs are above all things media, and the various descriptions they gave of their office--such as "I am the way, the truth, and the life." "I am the door," and the like--referred not to themselves at all, but to the Spirit who spoke through them. Jesus, when questioned on this very subject, said plainly, "The words which I speak unto you I speak not of myself; but the Father which dwelleth in me, he doeth the works." Jesus, then, spoke as he was moved by the Holy Ghost, and was no other than a clear glass through which the divine glory shone. [As it is written, "And we beheld his glory, the glory as of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." Now, the Only Begotten is not mortal man, but he who has been in the bosom of the Father from all eternity, even the Word, the Maker, the Speaker, the Manifestor.] It was this Holy Spirit which descended upon Jesus at his baptism, and dwelt in him for the time of his sojourn upon earth, speaking through him and controlling him; while he, on his part, so lived as to bring all his personal will into oneness with that Spirit.

The Spirit answers to the Essence, the Father, and the Word. Of these, the first is one of the seven spirits, or divine flames, of universal Divinity. The second is the angel, or God, of the planet, and is the Ęon of the Christ. The third is the Christ. They are respectively "the spirit, the water,[2] and the blood." The Father and the Word may therefore be said to be one; for by the Word the Father is manifest, and--in the microcosm--the Word is the Father manifested.

The greatest hierarch--he, that is, who has the most perfect control over Nature--is not only a man of many incarnations, but has obtained from God the greatest and rarest of gifts,--that of being a medium for the Highest.[1] Such a one is the Ęon,[2] and has what is called the "double portion." Elisha craved and received this grace. "Where now is the God of Elijah?" he cried, when endeavouring to work his first miracle; and he besought Elijah that a portion of his double[3] might rest upon him. For Elijah had so transmuted his soul into spirit that it was doubled, and a portion of this he bestowed on Elisha. Such an Ęon it was that descended upon Jesus, to quit him at the final moment. Hence the exclamation, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

1. Paris, October 12, 1878. Received in sleep. Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. i, p. 282.

2. A term which, as here used, implies also the "mother," "water" denoting especially the substance or feminine principle, as distinguished from the energy or masculine principle.    E. M.]

No. 38: Concerning The Doctrine Of Grace [1]

ONE of the most dangerous mysteries to place in the hands of the vulgar is that of the doctrine of grace. When once union has been accomplished between the human and the divine wills, there is grace. And the man under grace cannot sin mortally. Conformity between the human and the divine wills is the condition of salvation, and salvation is not forfeited through any specific act, unless such act be wilful and indicate a condition of rebellion.

Of a man under grace, David is a type. His heart was right with God; his intuition was unfallen. So that even his many and grievous sins did not, and could not, alienate him from God. The man who is deliberately in opposition to the divine will is in far greater danger than the man who, having a true intuition, sins more flagrantly. It is not by a specific act, or many specific acts, that the soul is destroyed; but by a state of heart in constant opposition to the divine will. Hence the axiom of the Calvinist, "If you are under grace you cannot sin"--that is, mortally.

Whence one reason for the appellation "Son of David" applied to the Christ. The man must first be "under grace" before he can become regenerate. It is an indispensable step in his soul's progress. Wherefore the latter is said to be the son of the former.

[1. "The very fact that the Christ is describable as 'a medium for the Highest,' must imply and involve the perfectionment of His own indwelling spirit, since it is only through the identity in condition of the God within Him and the God without Him that the two could unite and blend" (Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. i, p. 282).    S. H. H.

2. The person who receives the Ęon being called an Ęon, as the person who manifests the Christ is called a Christ.    E. M.

3, This is not the magnetic phantom ordinarily so called.    E. M.

4. London, December 1880. Spoken in trance. Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. i, pp. 402-403.

No. 39: Concerning The "Four Atmospheres"[1]

THE earthly mind (anima bruta) is that part of man which contains his material memory, abilities, affections, cares, acquirements, and the images bred of his associations in each particular incarnation. This mind is shed with the body and shade, and is--as it were--an individual in itself. It inhabits the astral sphere and cannot get beyond it; nor does it ever return to earth (embodied), but dwells, perhaps for many centuries, in the magnetic light, which it takes for heaven, seeking its own affinities and frequenting the places and persons familiar to it. But the soul--or anima divina, which is the true man--has another destiny than this. It leaves its body on earth, its shade and its earthly mind in the astral sphere, and mounts to its own proper higher region, until the time comes for it either to pass into Nirvāna, or to become again incarnate. The soul retains the celestial memory;--that memory only in which lives such of its past as is worthy to live, and is not of an ephemeral nature,--its knowledges, virtues, and true loves. The only affections, therefore, which live eternally are those of the soul,--whose which have struck deep into the man and made part of his inmost being. The loves of the mere body or earthly mind die with these, and form no part of the permanent man. True it is that some souls are retained in their phantoms for a time more or less long, not being pure--or, rather, not strong--enough to mount higher. But being in the astral sphere they cannot see beyond it, and--like the astral phantom--believe they are at their journey's end. The larva, or shade, is not the same as the phantom seen by the ordinary lucid. For the two are separable, and the shade occupies a yet lower atmosphere. After a little while, moreover, the shade consumes away and disappears; but the phantom with which the lucid converses, remains as strong and individual as ever, it may be for centuries. For not only the recently dead, but some who lived and died before the Christian era, have been evoked and conversed with, and these are not mere reflects (like the purely astral entities which are emanations from the living), since they reason and remember, and give proofs of their identity. The ordinary lucid obtains access to them only because he is himself in the astral when in the lucid condition, and sees, therefore, only what is there. To enter the heavenly sphere, and to come into communion with souls, a regenerated state is necessary. Now, the sphere entered depends, not alone on the lucid, but also on the magnetiser[2] and the circle present at the experience. There are four atmospheres surrounding us, and only in the highest of these do we find the freed soul. Each sphere is the counterpart of each portion of man, and each has its system and its sun. Interior knowledge, earnest aspiration, and purity of thought and life, are the keys by which alone can be opened the gates of the inmost and highest sphere. The lowest is enlightened by the material sun. It is that of the present life of the body. The next is enlightened by the astral or magnetic light; and it is that of the sideral body or perisoul. The next is that of the soul, and it is enlightened by the spiritual sun. And the highest is the immediate presence of the Lord God, where is the "great white throne" and the company of the "virgins." Now, the "virgins" are souls which, being perfectly spiritualised, retain no taint of materiality.[3]

1. London, August 22, 1881. Written under Illumination (Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. ii, p. 37).]

2. This is not necessarily a corporeal, or even an extraneous, being, but may be the spirit of the lucid himself.    E. M.

3. See Apoc. xiv, 4, where they are called virgins in virtue of their having overcome the need of sexual relations prior to their final incarnations, as in No. XXIV, par. 4. The term "women" was sometimes used as a general term for things material. See also Dreams and Dream-Stories, No. IX.    E. M.]

No. 40: Concerning The Hereafter [1]

WHEN a man parts at death with his material body, that of him which survives is divisible into three parts, the anima divina, or, as in the Hebrew, Neshamah; the anima bruta, or Ruach, which is the persona of the man; and the shade, or Nephesh, which is the lowest mode of soul substance. In the great majority of persons the consciousness is gathered up and centred in the anima bruta, or Ruach; in the few wise it is polarised in the anima divina. Now, that part of man which passes through, or transmigrates,--the process whereof is called by the Hebrews Gilgal Neshamoth,--is the anima divina, which is the immediate receptacle of the deific Spirit. And whereas there is in the world nothing save the human, actual or potential, the Neshamah subsists also in animals, though only as a mere spark, their consciousness being therefore rudimentary and diffuse. It is the Neshamah which finally escapes from the world and is redeemed into eternal life. The anima bruta, or earthly mind, is that part of man which retains all earthly and local memories, reminiscent affections, cares and personalities of the world or planetary sphere, and bears his family or earth-name. After death this anima bruta, or Ruach, remains in the "lower Eden," within sight and call of the magnetic earth-sphere. But the anima divina, or Neshamah,--the name of which is known only to God,--passes upwards and continues its evolutions, bearing with it only a small portion, and that the purest, of the outer soul, or mind. This anima divina is the true man. It is not within hail of the magnetic atmosphere; and only on the rarest and most solemn occasions does it return to the planet unclothed. The astral shade, the Nephesh, is dumb; the earthly soul, the anima bruta, or Ruach, speaks and remembers; the divine soul, the Neshamah, which contains the divine light, neither returns nor communicates, that is, in the ordinary way. That which the anima bruta remembers is the history of one incarnation only, because it is part of the astral man, and the astral man is renewed at every incarnation of the Neshamah. But very advanced men become re-incarnate, not on this planet, but on some other nearer the sun. The anima bruta has lived but once, and will never be re-incarnate. It continues in the "lower Eden," a personality in relation to the earth, and retaining the memories, both good and bad, of its one past life. If it have done evil, it suffers indeed, but is not condemned; if it have done well, it is happy, but not beatified. It continues in thought its favourite pursuits of earth, and creates for itself houses, gardens, flowers, books, and so forth, out of the astral light. It remains in this condition more or less strongly defined, according to the personality it had acquired, until the anima divina, one of whose temples it was, has accomplished all its avatārs. Then, with all the other earthly souls belonging to that divine soul, it is drawn up into the celestial Eden, or upper heaven, and returns into the essence of the Neshamah. But all of it does not return; only the good memories; the bad sink to the lowest stratum of the astral light, where they disintegrate. For, if the divine soul were permanently, in its perfected state, to retain the memories of an its evil doings, its misfortunes, its earthly griefs, its earthly loves, it would not be perfectly happy. Therefore, only those loves and memories return to the Neshamah, which have penetrated the earthly soul sufficiently to reach the divine soul, and to make part of the man. It is said that all marriages are made in Heaven. This means that all true love unions are made in the celestial within the man. The mere affections of the anima bruta are evanescent, and belong only to it. When this, the Ruach, is interrogated, it can speak only of one life, for it has lived but one. Of that one it retains all the memories and all the affections. If these have been strong, it remains near those persons whom especially it loved, and overshadows them. A single Neshamah may have as many of these former selves in the astral light, as a man may have changes of raiment. But when the divine soul is perfected, and about to be received into "the Sun," or Nirvāna,[1] she indraws all these past selves, and possesses herself of their memories; but only of the worthy parts of these, and such as will not deprive her of eternal calm. In "the planets," the soul forgets; in "the suns," she remembers. For, in memoriā ęternā erit Justus.[2] Not until a man has accomplished his regeneration, and become a son of God, a Christ, can he have these memories of his past lives. Such memories as a man, on the upward path, can have of his past incarnations, are by reflection only; and the memories are not of events usually, but of principles and truths, and habits formerly acquired. If these memories relate to events, they are vague and fitful, because they are reflections from the overshadowing of his former selves in the astral light. For the former selves--the deserted temples of the anima divina--frequent her sphere and are attracted towards her, especially under certain conditions. From them she learns through the intermediary of the genius, or "moon," who lights up the camera obscura of the mind, and reflects on its tablet the memories cast by the overshadowing past. The anima bruta, or Ruach, seems to itself to progress, because it has a vague sense that sooner or later it will be lifted to higher spheres. But of the method of this it is ignorant, because it can only know the celestial by union with it. The learning which makes it seem to itself to progress is acquired by reflected soul-rays coming from the terrestrial. Advanced men on the earth assist and teach the astral soul, and hence its fondness for their spheres. It learns by reflected intellectual images, or thoughts. The Ruach is right when it says it is immortal. For the better part of it will in the end be absorbed into the Neshamah. But if one interrogate a Ruach of even two or three centuries old, it seldom knows more than it knew in its earth-life, unless, indeed, it gain fresh knowledge from its interrogator. The reason why some communications are astral, and others celestial, is simply that some persons --the greater number--communicate by means of the anima bruta in themselves; and others--the few purified--by means of their anima divina. For, like attracts like. The earthly souls of animals are rarely met with; they come into communion with animals rather than with man, unless an affection between a man and an animal have been very strong. If a man would meet and recognise his beloved in Nirvāna, he must make his affection one of the Neshamah, not of the Ruach. There are many degrees of love. True love is stronger than a thousand deaths; for, though one die a thousand times, a single love may yet perpetuate itself past every death from birth to birth, growing and culminating in intensity and might.

Now, all these three, Nephesh, Ruach, and Neshamah, are discrete modes of one and the same universal being, which is at once life and substance, and is instinct with consciousness, inasmuch as it is, under whatever mode, Holy Spirit. Wherefore, there inheres in them all a divine potency. Evolution, which is the manifestation of that which is inherent, is the manifestation of this potency. The first formulation of this inherency, above the plane of the material, is the Nephesh, this being the soul by which are impelled the lower and earlier forms of life. It is the "moving" soul that breathes and kindles. The next--the Ruach--is the "wind" that rushes forth to vivify the mind. Higher, because more inward and central, is the Neshamah, which, borne on the bosom of the Ruach, is the immediate receptacle of the Divine particle, and without which this cannot be individualised and become an indiffusible personality. Both the "wind" and the "flame" are spirit; but the wind is general, the flame particular. The wind fills the house; the flame designates the person. The wind is the Divine Voice resounding in the ear of the Apostle and passing away where it listeth; the flame is the Divine Tongue uttering itself in the word of the Apostle. Thus, then, in the soul impersonal are perceived the breath and afflatus of God; but in the soul personal is the formulate and express utterance of God. Now, both of Nephesh and Ruach, that which is gathered up and endures is Neshamah.

[1. London, July 1881. Received in sleep, in timely and satisfactory solution of sundry perplexing experiences: and subsequently found to be a concise statement of the doctrine of the Kabala.    E. M.

2. Referred to in Life of Anna Kingsford, vol. ii, p. 30.

3. See Appendix, note A.

4. Ps. cxii, 6.




Book The

Sect. 1
No 1 - 10

Sect. 2
No 11-20

Sect. 3
No 21-30

Sect. 4
No 31-40

Sect. 5
No 41-50

Book The

Sect. 6
No 1-10

Sect. 7
No 11-17

The Third


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