THEOSOPHY, Vol. 42, No. 7, May, 1954
(Pages 310-316; Size: 20K)
THE LIGHT OF EVERLASTING(1)
THE astronomer and the physicist strive mentally as well as physically to see beyond the commonplace and mortal. There is adequate reason why other men should do the same. That man has origin and place in the history of the world still undetermined by presently available scientific method and apparatus, should be cause for his continued deep search and his rejection of the facetious dictum that no one knows, or the more obnoxious one that such matters are past finding out. To be swayed by those who themselves have not yet succeeded in finding out, is not the path of Occultism, but is one of degradation humanly and a "sinning against the Light" morally. Once man knew, says Theosophy. He permitted the knowledge to become lost. The strangest story of all ever told in the vast reaches of Everlasting is the one that Man, the highest production of evolution, creatively exists, yet does not understand how.
The answer to man's presence on earth must be equally strange to his present forgetful nature, his acquired perceptions of the externals of life. The human entity is not only the twig of the tree but also the trunk and its roots, not merely the sun-ray but the sun as well, not only the drop but also the ocean. Man is both devilish and divine. He is both. He is All. That with which the physicist identifies himself, is that which he believes himself to be. Whether it be great or small purview, it is but a part. It is not the essence which is One. It is not container and contained but only a share of the divine birthright, which is both Light and Darkness.
"A stone becomes a plant, a plant becomes an animal, the latter a man, and a man a god," says the Hermetic axiom. This is the occult history of evolution, which includes man's evolution on this as upon every planetary field. "At the beginning of every manvantara (life-cycle) the natural tendency of every Deva or god is manward. A Deva drops its essence into the body of a plant and becomes a stone; from the rocky womb, it creeps into the moss and plant; thence Karma carries it into an animal, and there it remains, until united with Alaya's Light. After which the animal blooms into thinking man. It is the latter who furnishes every new Manvantara with intelligent and wise architects and builders." The next great manvantara will witness the men of our own life-cycle becoming the instructors and guides, the watchers and architects of a mankind whose monads may now yet be imprisoned -- semi-conscious -- in the most intelligent of the animal kingdom, while their lower principles will be animating, perhaps, the highest specimens of the vegetable world. This is the "Story of the Human Race."
Between the great evolutionary periods of coming forth is the para-nirvanic state and pralaya, which, however limitless from a human standpoint, yet has a limit in Eternity. Once reached, the same Pilgrim-monad will re-emerge therefrom, as a still higher being, on a far higher plane, to recommence its cycle of perfected activity. The monad passes and journeys through and is imprisoned in every transitional form throughout every kingdom of nature, during the first three rounds of the planetary manvantara. But the monad which becomes human is not the man. Thence, after the mid-point of the fourth round is reached, no units of the kingdoms lower than human are animated any longer by monads destined to become human in their next stage, but are animated only by the lower Elementals of their respective realms. These Elementals will become human monads, in their turn, only at the next great period.
Those Monads whose pilgrimage has brought them to the status of guides, watchers, architects and builders of worlds -- the future of our present human-kind -- are named in esoteric literature the Dhyani-Buddhas and Dhyan Chohans. It is these highest groups among the Seven who furnish the many and various races of humanity with their early divine kings and leaders. It is these watchers and architects of the globes over which they preside, who teach their human families their arts and sciences and who reveal to those incarnated monads who have just shaken off their vehicles of the lower kingdoms -- and therefore have lost every recollection of their divine origin -- the great spiritual truths of the transcendental worlds. "The Regent of the planet Venus (Sukra) loved his adopted child (Earth) so well that he incarnated as Usanas and gave it perfect laws, which were discarded in later ages." It is with the Regents of the planets, the informing Dhyan Chohans, that Occult mysticism has to deal. In their synthesis, these seven great hierarchies, the "rulers and governors," represent "Creation."
From the One Life, formless and uncreate, proceeds the Universe of lives. Fire alone is One, on the plane of the One Reality. On the plane of manifested being its particles are the fiery lives. Every visible thing in this universe was built by such Lives, from conscious and divine primordial man down to the unconscious agents that construct matter. The divine primordial "men" are the "Sons of Light." Light condenses into the forms of the Lords of Being. From these, downward-formed from the ever-consolidating waves of that Light, which becomes on the objective plane gross matter -- proceed the numerous hierarchies of the creative Forces, some formless, others having their own distinctive form; others, again, the lowest elementals, having no form of their own, but assuming every form according to the surrounding conditions. "In the beginning God created the duplex or dual Heaven -- not 'Heaven and Earth' but the upper and lower Heavens -- the separation of primordial substance that was light in its upper and dark in its lower portions -- or the manifested Universe." Absolute light is absolute darkness, and vice versa. In fact, there is neither light nor darkness in the realm of truth. Good and evil are twins, the progeny of Space and Time, under the sway of Maya. Separate them, by cutting off one from the other, and they will both die.
In the Desatir it is said: "All that is on earth, is the shadow of something that is in the superior spheres. The luminous light and fire are the shadows of that which is still more luminous, and so on till it reaches Me, who am the light of lights." Light is the great Protean magician, and under the divine will of the architects and builders of the Universe -- representing in their collectivity the universal MIND -- its multifarious, omnipotent waves gave birth to every form as well as to every living being. The divine MONAD manifests itself as the universal, omniscient and omnipotent root of divine intelligence. This descends "like a flame spreading from the eternal Fire, immoveable, without increase or decrease, ever the same to the end" of the cycle of existence, and becomes universal life on the mundane plane. Depth, the source of Light, is the unmanifested Logos, or the abstract Idea of the universal evolution. In its unity, primordial Light is the seventh and highest principle, the light of the unmanifested Word. In its differentiation it becomes the "Seven Sons" (Fohat).
When the Church curses Satan, it curses the cosmic reflection of God. It anathematizes God made manifest in matter or in the objective; it maledicts God, or the ever-incomprehensible Wisdom, revealing itself as Light and Shadow, good and evil in nature, in the only manner comprehensible to the limited intellect of man. According to the Gnostics, the two principles of Good and Evil are immutable Light and Shadow, good and evil being virtually one and having existed through all eternity, as they will ever continue to exist so long as there are manifested worlds. Were it light alone, inactive and absolute, the human mind could not appreciate it nor even realize it. Shadow is that which enables light to manifest itself, and gives it objective reality. Therefore shadow is not evil, but is the necessary and indispensable corollary which completes light or good: it is its creator on Earth. The Zohar teaches pre-eminently that everything objective on earth or in this universe is the shadow of eternal Light or Deity.
Light is the first-begotten, and the first emanation of the Supreme, and Light is Life, says the Evangelist and the Kabalist. Both are electricity -- the life principle, the anima mundi, pervading the universe, the electric vivifier of all things. Light means esoteric Wisdom. The secret meaning of the terms Dragon, Serpent and the like, all of which refer to adepts and initiates, has to do with Light. The wise Serpents and Dragons of light were the precursors of the enlightened Buddhas and teachers of mankind. The Gods of Light are the radiations of primordial nature. They are formless in their divine nature, existing in the harmony of universal WILL. Being the collective or the aggregate of cosmic Will, on the plane of the subjective universe, they unite together an infinitude of monads -- each monad the mirror of its own universe -- and thus individualize for the time being an independent mind -- omniscient and universal. By the same process of magnetic aggregation they create for themselves objective, visible bodies, out of the interstellar atoms. Atoms and monads in any state of differentiation are but the principles, corporeal, psychic, and Spiritual, of the "Gods." As Krishna teaches, "All this Universe is pervaded by me in my invisible form," and "I draw together the five senses and the mind in order to obtain a body and to leave it again."
The Soul of the World, the deity that pervades all space and things, is the Spirit of Light itself. That which commands "Let there be" is the eternal Law, and he who obeys, the Elohim -- the Forces of the one FORCE. It is perfectly immaterial whether these Forces be called by one name or another. They are the "Word made Flesh," the messenger of Cosmic and human ideations, the active force in universal life. With the esotericists, from the remotest times the Universal Soul or anima mundi, the source of life of all beings and the life principle of the three kingdoms -- was Septenary. In Pymander the active Idea .. gives birth to the seven notes -- the septenary scale of the creative Forces, and to the seven prismatic aspects of colour, all born from the one white ray, or Light -- itself generated in DARKNESS. Thus, every bright sun-god of antiquity -- a glorious deity by day, and its own opponent and adversary by night, was named the Dragon of Wisdom, because it was supposed to contain the germs of night and day. It has now become Satan on the sole and unsupported authority of despotic human dogma. The Ahrimans, the Asuras, the Elohim, or "Sons of God," of whom Satan was one, were the primordial angels, all those spiritual beings who were called the "Angels of Darkness," because that darkness is absolute light (wisdom), a fact now neglected if not entirely forgotten in theology.
The Gods of Light proceed from the Gods of Darkness. Once landed on, and having touched this planet of dense matter, no snow-white wings of the highest angel can remain immaculate. Nor can the Avatar (incarnation) be perfect, as every such Avatar is the fall of a God into generation. Angels, doomed to incarnation, are in the chains of flesh and matter, under the darkness of ignorance, till the "Great Day," which will come as always after the seventh round, after the expiration of the "Week" on the Seventh Sabbath, or in the post-Manvantaric Nirvana. Satan is Lucifer, the bright angel of Light, the light and life-bringer, the Soul alienated from the holy Ones, the other angels, and for a period anticipating the time when they would have descended on Earth to incarnate in their turn. Lucifer is divine and terrestrial light, presiding over the light of truth as over the light of day. There is no devil or the utterly depraved, and there are no angels absolutely perfect, though there may be spirits of Light and Darkness. Thus Lucifer -- the spirit of intellectual enlightenment and freedom of thought -- is metaphorically the guiding beacon, which helps man to find his way through the rocks and sandbanks of life, for Lucifer is the LOGOS in his highest, and the "Adversary" in his lowest aspect -- both of which are reflected in our Ego.
Satan, or the Red fiery Dragon stands proven as the "Lord of Phosphorus" and Lucifer, the Sophia or wisdom residing in the bright morning Star, the planet Venus. He is our Mind -- our tempter and Redeemer, our intelligent liberator and saviour from pure animalism. Without this principle -- the emanation of the very essence of the pure divine principle of Intelligence which radiates direct from the Divine on earth proceeds eternally from, and is destined to reunite with, the Father Star in heaven. The adepts have each their elder "twin Soul," and they know it, calling it "Father-Soul," and "Father Fire." At the supreme and final initiation each candidate for "union with Deity" is placed face to face with the heavenly prototype. Bulwer-Lytton allegorically describes the meeting of the adept face to face with his Augoeides, in the evocation performed by "Zanoni":"Adonai, appear!" (the invocation). And in the lonely cave, whence once had gone forth the oracles of a heathen god, there emerged from the shadows of fantastic rocks a luminous and gigantic column ... the radiance of which lit the stalactites, the crags, the arches of the cave, and shed a pale and tremulous splendour on the features of Zanoni ... Then from the column there emerged a shape of unimaginable glory. Its face was that of a man in its first youth; but solemn, as with the consciousness of eternity and the tranquillity of wisdom; light, like starbeams, flowed through its transparent veins; light made its limbs themselves, and undulated, in restless sparkles, through the waves of its dazzling hair....The cry of mankind is ever the cry for Light. "Unveil," should be his command, the soul in darkness -- "that face of the true Sun now hidden by the vase of body." "Light comes through Venus (Lucifer), who receives a triple supply, and gives one-third of it to the Earth." Pythagoras calls Venus the Sol alter, "the other sun." Lucifer-Venus is the third of the "seven palaces of the Sun." Semi-exoterically, the "First-born" of the Almighty -- Fiat Lux -- or the angels of primordial light, were commanded to create: one third of them rebelled and refused. The esoteric philosophy teaches that one third of the Dhyanis, endowed with intelligence, "which is a formless breath, composed of intellectual, not elementary substances" was simply doomed by the law of Karma and evolution to be reborn or incarnated on Earth. These are the Titans and Kabiri, the fire-gods who brought light and intelligence to animal man, who endowed humanity with intellect and reason. They are the Agniputra and the Manasaputra, the Lords of Wisdom, the "Fathers" and "Sons" of Fire and Mind. "Fire and flame destroy the body of an Arhat, their essence makes him immortal. The essence of FIRE is the Life and Light of the Universe, the visible fire and flame are destruction, death and evil."
The visible fire and flame are works of the divine Pilgrim throughout the cycle of his terrestrial incarnations, which are consumed when the fire of ignorance is extinct. The Fire of his inner light and life is the Dhyani who gave him birth, and will yet again give him Birth into the higher Light, but whom he daily crucifies. It is mankind which has become the Serpent of Genesis. But Daemon est Deus Inversus. The Two are ONE. The "fatal light which kills and destroys" is only the lower garment of the Akasha, the "Celestial Virgin" who is the Mother of both gods and devils at one and the same time. Deity in the shape of Akasha pervades all things. Shall mankind continue to attract to itself but the shadowy manifested essence of Deity, the dark robes of the Sons of Light, the "Father in Heaven" this day, as throughout all the days of eternity? Shall humanity thus perpetually re-create Evil of its own accord and invoke but Powers of Darkness; or recognize the light of Lucifer as Alaya's Light, as the beacon of preparation against the next "Great Day," when humanity will have become the "Sons of Light," the watchers and architects of a new Dawn?
COMPILER'S NOTE: The following is a separate item which followed the above article but was on the same page. I felt it was useful to include it here:
DNYANESHVARI ON REBIRTH
The ordinary rule is that a human being attains to that which has been dominating his mind, when death is approaching. He cannot avoid it -- whatever is uppermost at the time of death, that is the condition one reaches after death without fail, just as dreams derive their substance from the longings and strivings which agitate one's heart during waking hours. Then there is no death when the body is destroyed....
It is by constant effort that the Yogi controls his mind. If you have any doubt that this could be accomplished, then in the first instance you must try. Even a lame man, if he were assiduous, might go to the top of the hill. Therefore, O Arjuna, whether this body survives or dies, link the mind to Self. Then it does not matter whether the body exists, or does not.
The man of wisdom never forgets the troubles of rebirth such as birth, death, old age, illness and other misery. He anticipates them while they are yet at a distance....
THE LIVING GUARDIANS
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