INSIGHTS AND HERESIES PERTAINING TO THE EVOLUTION OF THE SOUL
by AMMYEETIS (Persian) Second Edition 1916
Christopher Publishing House Boston Copyright 1913 by the Christopher Press Copyright 1916 by the Christopher Publishing House
CHANGE OF ATOMS.
There is nothing so great that it cannot be undermined and destroyed. There is nothing so established and sanctioned by age-long, consecrated usage that shall not finally be swept along into oblivion and utterly forgotten.
There is no combination of material atoms—no mechanism, however strong and useful—that shall not dissolve and be rearranged, and take on ever higher forms of expression. This is, and has always been the unfailing law of progression, of the outworking of the ascending series. It involves all circumstances, and all earthly experiences. Happy are those who take Paul’s advice, who can equip themselves with the armor of faith, which begets knowledge, and prepare to “fight the battle of life” with courage and fortitude.
Much of our successful conduct of life depends upon our recognition of our limitations, and largely our limitations depend upon the will. The test lies in the power to discriminate between what one owes to one’s self, and the duties and obligations imposed by responsibilities inherited or assumed. Temperaments are so variable, no two human beings alike. Much, too, depends upon the power and habit of observation.
FINAL RACE EXPERIENCE.
The fear of death—shared in by all created beings—is nature’s safeguard against a universal stampede from this life by physical death, when the miseries of existence on this earthly plane become too dreadful to be borne, when the tortures of the soul, in the tortured body drives out all reason, and all philosophy, and the consciousness senses only the demand for surcease of agony. Probably most people have experienced, for a moment, in a time of terrible crisis, a thought, if not an impulse, to seek thus to end all suffering by flinging off the bonds of life here, and thus pass out into—what? Simply life in a changed environment, with exactly the same responsibilities and soul needs, and the same causes of their miseries, and unsatisfied desires still existing in their minds.
Life here is just one link in the endless, unbreakable chain of existence. It is all one, here, hereafter, anywhere. Caught in the web of life, there is no escape from its demands upon the individual soul. Somewhere along the way it has to decide its own fate, upward and onward, or downward into the purlieus of the crude beginnings of things. It is free to make its choice. It can pursue the hard and toilsome path of earning its right to eternal happiness, or it can flop around through all the hells of life unrelated to God, and resistant to Christ.
One by one all human beings must obey the call to march over into the border land, into nature’s infinite invisible realm; they cannot help themselves; no one can; on they go, an endless caravan, to the land of revelations, the place of reviews where the utterly selfish are fetched up with a “round turn” and made to realize that a real Godliness is the only thing that can pass muster, that mere beliefs do not count, and only character tells. How swiftly, how inevitably their places are filled! Nothing stops; prince or peasant, it is all one; the will of the gods, the guardians of this planet, is being fulfilled.
“It is to laugh” to “see the heathen rage and devise a vain thing.” No hierarchy of earth, no multitudinous howl of ignorance and stupidity that “having eyes that see not; and having ears that hear not” can block the wheels of progress. It has worked in the past, “quite some,” routing out tortured souls and bodies by the millions, sending them flying off from this planet which was, and is their real home, turning rack and screw, and setting baleful fires on tender flesh, threatening further eternal hell fires; all for what? Why, to prove that “tweedle dee,” is greater than “tweedle dum,” and this is the record of religion at the hands of the theologians and the priests! This is the story of accepted orthodox religion. Why, then, have a religion? Why not try the altruism taught by the great Master in a system of ethics that can never be superseded by one higher and more truth-inspiring, better adapted to the perfect unfoldment of the human race?
No more of these awful persecutions, and massacres, and killings for the “glory of God;” for the amusement of devils, really! Practical common sense, and reason will surely be, in time, the salvation of this world.
The wisest teacher is the one who shows the gradual processes of unfoldment and growth in the mind and body, and in all the outworkings of the material world. He who breaks down arbitrary distinctions in every realm of life does the most toward liberating and enlightening the world. We are from infancy so accustomed to petty distinctions which have originated in ignorance, and from long use have been formulated into laws, fixed and binding, that were some person clear-sighted enough to the truth to show us our invisible bonds, and how to sever them with the scalpel of common sense, and reason, we would be amazed at our great freedom, and astonished to see the light coming through thousands of loopholes and windows of the mind which are now closed by an accumulation of dust and cobwebs of the petty superstitions of ages.
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Millions of beings are born so starved that no after nourishing can make up for it.
WISE USE OF MONEY.
The money that has been spent in building up blasphemous theologies would have rid the whole world of poverty, and ignorance, if it had been beneficently employed with the kind intention of doing the peoples of the earth good, in every way, instead of trying to fix upon them damnation now, and also arrange for it in their life hereafter.
Here and there, scattered along the way, are souls who have escaped the “drag-net” of theology, but there are at this present moment great spirits that, even after having passed through death’s dark crucible, are haunted by damning fears of bad results possible from too much freedom. The trail of the serpent is felt by them still.
Genius means simply a high and true sympathy with inanimate and human nature, and the power to voice their various moods and tenses.
Paradoxes seem to run riot in all occult things. Extremes in all departments are rare. There are a far greater number of indifferently good and indifferently bad people than of the superlatively good or bad. So Nature everywhere keeps the equilibrium, and the eternal processes of evolution go on, and ever onward toward perfection.
All the pains of this human life come in consequence of the resistance of the souls of men to the law of progress which is always, and everywhere, laying hold of them to force them from the sod up to God. They squirm, and wriggle, and howl, and make no end of fuss, because the Lord calls upon them to awake from their animalism, and sloth, and arise, and seek the kingdom.
“He knoweth our frame,” no more comforting, or encouraging words than these have ever been spoken. “He,” the great soul-Father, knoweth us as we are. He knows how to inspire with hope, and courage the most sorrowing and lost. The felon in his cell, the outcast from all that men call good, are, with those of superior spiritual attainments, subjects of this beneficence. Nearly every soul feels, at some period of existence, its subtle relationship to a something, a power outside of its material life and surroundings. The experiences of this life are calculated to strengthen and perfect that relationship. Jesus Christ is credited with saying, “Be ye lifted up even as I am lifted up.” That is, in spirit, to a perception of the relationship of your souls to the great “Over soul.”
Be ye, then, patient with yourselves, and with each other. Be sure that you are being taught, “lifted up” to a perception and knowledge of these things, as fast as it is lawful for you to be.
In God’s good time ye shall blossom and bear a goodly fruitage.
“THOUGHTS ARE THINGS.”
But thoughts, as potent entities, must pass from the formative, nebulous condition into a crystallized state by, and through some form of externalization of language, spoken or written.
Thoughts must be created—born—through the absolute form-creation of the human brain, in order to secure to them potentiality, and immortality.
The status of the individual brain, decides its products, the character of its brain children. Thoughts that are not caught, clung to, and crystallized, through the action of the external brain can have no place in the external life of this world, although they do have their power and influence in the incorporate, silent, ever-working world of cause.
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The mind digs deep to bring forth the real.
The soul dreads the edicts of its ignorant prototypes. The ego comes forward with its battle-axe, and the spirit rejoices and exults. Body, Soul, and Spirit; Nature’s trinity.
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As spirit per se, has no entity, and only evolves individuality through its relationship with matter, and has no other conscious expression, the so-long-talked-of “fall of man” was not a fall downward, but a process upward, necessary to his being, to his existence as man.
The persistence of the human soul after physical death proves only that it is a candidate for immortality. The race is just begun. The path that leads onward to the eternal heights is so long, so beset with difficulties, with pains and penalties, losses and crosses, and all the paraphernalia of evolution and growth that the stoutest heart, the strongest will would fail to respond to the call to “come up higher,” were one to at once become aware of what inevitably lay before him. When any individual soul has dwelt long enough in the spirit realm to begin to feel the unrest of the law of eternal progress, he senses the law of reincarnation, and his earthly home draws him by attraction. He is preferred the cup of “renunciation,” and forgetfulness, and is shown the way to his next embodiment.
The inspired thinker sends out a thought to the world, it is taken up and passed through other brains, it becomes distorted or is recognized by them in its integrity according to the caliber of mind, or the idiosyncrasies of the one representing it. A thought or idea, once given to the world, becomes common property. It is not possible to put on mortgages or limit the use that may be made of it, or how it may be made to bring in returns to commercially-inspired minds. A woman devised a style of dress which she wore for her comfort at her own convenience. Another woman gave exactly the same pattern and details to the public, and is now living in elegance on the income derived from another. A man—a worker—invents an improvement, or a better method of doing things. The firm adopts and makes money out of it, and its originator is forgotten. There are, however, clever people who know how to protect their inspirations, and get the benefit themselves. The greatest disappointment comes to the originator when the thought is intended to indicate and outline action. So few people can achieve the same point of view, so few can be depended upon for united, harmonious action that the best organizing power is at times fetched up with a “round turn,” and the progress of the good work intended becomes greatly impeded, or virtually lost.
There are today many cults professing to have healing powers; but whether they are named “Christian,” or “Mental,” or “Spiritual,” or “Divine Science,” or whether the place of healing be in some shrine sacred to an accredited saint, or only in the presence of the patient receiving the benediction; they all operate under the same law; there is no other.
Jesus was the great transmitter to humanity of a knowledge of the power of divine healing; he never specialized. He never said: “I have cured your liver complaint, or your lungs are healed,” etc., according to the ailment of the person seeking his aid. He only told them: “Thy [own] faith hath made thee whole.” It was spoken of God long ago: “He healeth all our infirmities.” The quality and the amount of personal magnetism possessed by the healer—the transmitter of the divine healing—does make a vast difference in the results of such efforts. The “Nazarene” was devoid of egotism, and selfishness, and his desire to heal and bless humanity was with him an overwhelming passion.
That Jesus knew the value of right physical habits is evidenced by the way he had of admonishing his patients to “go and sin no more,” that is, stop breaking nature’s hygienic laws. He had all along told them that right thinking was necessary to right doing.
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The transcendentalism of one age, shorn of the peculiar shading given to it by the individuality of the mind through which it first manifests itself, becomes the hard “common sense” of the next.
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What is Truth? Truth is God. God is Truth. Nothing in the universe could exist for one instant unless it had in it some faint intuition of truth, and it is this that we are here to discover.
Human beings slaughtered on battle fields, or carried off by pestilence and famine by thousands, or perishing by accidents by sea or by land by hundreds, are individually dear and useful, and are mourned; but in the great aggregate of moving life on this planet, they count as surplus.
ANALYSIS OF THE “LORD’S PRAYER.”
How shall we pray? To whom shall we pray? Shall we pray at all? These are unsettled questions in the minds of many good persons who are striving to perceive the highest truth and to be guided thereby. The tests that have been applied to the usefulness of prayer by a large class of religious people have been, for ages, purely materialistic. The Lord has been importuned for the bestowal of personal favors, from the manufacturing of the right kind of weather to the slaying of enemies, and from the righteous putting down of infidels, to the spending of dollars with which to build high steeples. Then, too, God has had the benefit of the very best advice concerning the way He ought to deal with the heathen, how He should treat sinners of every sort, so as to show himself equal to managing his fractious subjects, and, finally, how to carry things along generally after such a fashion as should win and hold the respect of his earthly advisers.
This utter misunderstanding of the true function of prayer has caused many earnest souls to sorrow over lost faith in what should have been to them a source of strength and uplifting. Jesus said: “Ask, and ye shall receive,” and as all his teachings referred to things of the spirit, he must have meant to indicate to his followers that whatever was sought for in the line of true spiritual enlightenment would surely be given. No one prays for houses and lands, for gold and other forms of material wealth, “for Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen.”
All through the teachings of Jesus run the mention of his and our Heavenly Parent, “Our Father,” and since much of our knowledge of spiritual things comes through our perception of the law of correspondences, we naturally feel and believe that we have not only a Father but also a Mother in heaven. The recognition of the mother element—the Divine Mother—has always been a most potent factor in the power of the Roman Catholic Church to retain the unchanging devotion of its faithful adherents.
The reaction from a bigoted belief in, and a blind reliance upon a jealous and tyrannical Overseer sitting in state to judge and condemn to everlasting torment all but a few of earth’s children—a terror-inspiring God—has naturally turned the minds of many from recognition of any sort of relationship between humanity and a superior, divine and beneficent Power. The atheist glories in his disbelief, and calls exultingly upon those whose faith has become the stepping-stone to knowledge for proofs that he is not right in assuming to occupy the superior attitude of mind. Suppose for a moment, that all the world were brought to coincide with him. How would it benefit the race to prove it to be wholly orphaned—utterly left out of all consideration for its future care and happiness?
“Like as an earthly father pitieth his children,” Jesus affirmed, is the love of our Father, God, for the human-race. “I and my Father are one.” “My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.” These are some of the references made by Jesus to the relationship that he constantly asserted was established between his own soul and that of his Father, in the supernal world, and thus he taught his followers to pray:
“Our Father which art in Heaven.” This is the first recorded utterance of the modern shibboleth: “The Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man.” In this now universally employed invocation, Jesus claimed for himself no other mention than that in which he instructed all of earth’s children to join.
“Hallowed be thy name.” In a sacred name there is power to hold the wavering thought; so may thy name be hallowed! i. e., held sacred. It is affirmed that every created thing has a real appellation, a name given to it by its Creator. We pass through this rudimentary state of existence known as John or Mary, or by some other of the thousand or more titles in vogue that are indicative of different personalities; but it was long ago shown to an inspired teacher that, at a given point of development, each soul should be given its true name, a new one that should be “written in the forehead.” Our Puritan progenitors had a dim perception of a higher and inner meaning to names. By calling their children Grace, Mercy, Patience, Charity, etc., they sought to embody spiritual principles.
“Thy kingdom come.” No heavenly kingdom can ever be “let down” to the earth. The earthly must become developed and interpenetrated by the spiritual, and thus be lifted up into an harmonious co-relationship with the Divine.
“Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.” There is but one will; so make it known to us that we may realize out [Transcriber’s note: our?] at-one-ment with the Divine, even as do the “angels in heaven.”
“Give us this day our daily bread.” “The earth is the Lord’s and the fulness thereof.” (Make us partakers of thy bounty, that our bodies may have needed nourishment. Illuminate our spiritual understanding that we may take to ourselves each day such spiritual food as we are best fitted to appropriate and use.)
“And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” Up to this point there is simply suggested the personal relationship between the petitioner and the Being to whom he prays; but into this phrase quite another element is introduced—a new factor; forgive us, as we in turn forgive our enemies. This puts upon one who utters these words the responsibility of answering his own prayer, or of making the conditions whereby he shall be forgiven and accepted, that thus may be established the eternal vibrations that bind the very lowest to the Highest.
“And lead us not into temptation;” i. e., graciously protect us from following the devices of our own ignorance; but if we willfully go our own way, and are overcome with grief and disappointment because of our misdoing, “deliver us from [the] evil” consequences thereof, by inspiring our minds with courage to bear our pains and penalties with true heroism, and teach us through our experiences wherein lie our highest growth and wisdom for all our future lives. “For thine is the kingdom, and the power” to create and destroy, “and the glory.” (All things begin and end in God.) “Forever and ever. Amen.”
Jesus had undoubtedly learned the pure ethics of this all-embracing appeal. Principles are unchanging; but, as the law of evolution carries each succeeding representation of the underlying facts of spiritual science ever higher in the ascending series, on the spiral pathway that leads to the kingdom of God, so in each is embodied a more advanced phase or externalization of such facts. The revelations vouchsafed to the world through the teachings of Confucius, Buddha, and other saviors of men appealed only to the intellect. Jesus was the first to announce to the heart-hungry that “God so loved the world” that he sent one of his best beloved sons to bear witness to his own eternal love, and to show how all may become participators in its boundlessness.
The potency of prayer corresponds to the power of the thought or to the exalted aspiration of the soul projecting it. There are some who, seeking divine aid, are too weak in this respect to realize any special results, while the prayers of others ascend as on the wings of eagles. This attitude of the soul is not to be confounded with the “communion of saints.” Communion indicates the existence of a degree of equality which, in the relation of finite man with his Maker, cannot be.
An occult wave has swept round the world. The seals are being broken, and the sphinxes are speaking wherever they find ears to hear and minds to comprehend. The heart of the mystery is this; there is no new thing to be proclaimed. “Spiritual things are spiritually discerned,” and, with the divine illumination vouchsafed to all, “a wayfaring man, though a fool,” may see and know the deep things of God. But no door will be opened, no angel or “minister of grace” or “spirit friend” will descend the ladder of light that leads to the realms supernal, no inspiration of God will ever come to any soul on earth without prayer—in response to either conscious supplication or unconscious aspiration toward the Giver of every good and perfect gift. The ultimate function and use of prayer is simply to establish our relationship with the divine and ever-lasting forces that rule and guide our lives. These are ever operating to help us to live above the purely personal relationships that limit our growth and advancement along the lines of spiritual unfoldment, and to open to our souls vistas of perfectness on the higher planes of wisdom and understanding of the mysteries of immortal life.