THE SECRET DOCTRINE -VOLUME -3-
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As for what thou hearest others say, who persuade the many that the soul when once freed from the body neither suffers.... evil nor is conscious, I know that thou art better grounded in the doctrines received by us from our ancestors and in the sacred orgies of Dionysus than to believe them; for the mystic symbols are well known to us who belong to the Brotherhood.
The problem of life is man. Magic, or rather Wisdom, is the evolved knowledge of the potencies of man's interior being, which forces are divine emanations, as intuition is the perception of their origin, and initiation our induction into that knowledge ... We begin with instinct; the end is omniscience.
|1||Table of Contents||Sect.||Page|
|3||One Key to All Sacred Books|
|4||Assumptions have to be proven||5|
|5||The Spirit of Plato's Teaching||7|
|6||Self-Contradiction of the Critic||9|
|7||The Character of Ammonius Saccas||11|
|8||Plato a follower of Pytaghoras||13|
|10||The Protectors of China||1||15|
|11||The A.B.C. of Magic||1||17|
|12||Magic as old as Man||1||19|
|13||The Tree of Knowledge||1||21|
|14||Occultism must win the Day||1||23|
|15||Black Magic at Work||1||25|
|16||Black Magic and Hypnotism||1||27|
|17||The Philosophy stands on its own Merits||1||29|
|18||Modern Criticism and the Ancients||2||30|
|19||All Honour to Genuine Scientists||2||31|
|20||What is a Myth||2||33|
|22||The Origin of Magic||3||36|
|23||The Books of Hermes||3||37|
|24||What is the Origin of Magic||3||39|
|25||Pherecydes of Syros||3||41|
|26||Cain Mathematical and Anthropomorphic||3||43|
|27||The Secrecy of the Initiates||4||44|
|28||Exoteric and Esoteric Teachings||4||45|
|29||Origen on "Genesis"||4||47|
|30||The "Dark Sayings" of the "Testaments'||4||49|
|31||The Greatest Crime ever perpetrated||4||51|
|32||Asiatic Religions proclaim their Esotericism openly||4||53|
|33||The Wisdom Religion||4||55|
|34||Some Reasons for Secrecy||5||56|
|35||The Key of Practical Theurgy||5||57|
|36||The Ladder of Being||5||59|
|37||Three Ways open to the Adept||5||61|
|38||Man is God||5||63|
|39||Jesus taught Reincarnation||5||65|
|40||The Dangers of Practical Magic||6||67|
|41||Names as Symbols||6||69|
|42||The Three Mothers||6||71|
|43||The Bible and Word-Juggling||6||73|
|44||Moses and the Jews||6||75|
|45||Old Wine in New Bottles||7||76|
|46||Copies Antedated Originals||7||77|
|47||Which were the Thieves?||7||79|
|48||Character of the "Bible"||7||81|
|49||The "Book of Enoch" the Origin and Foundation of Christianity||8||82|
|50||The "Book of Enoch" and Christianity||8||83|
|51||Enoch records the Races||8||85|
|52||The "Book of Enoch" symbolical||8||87|
|53||Occultists do not reject the "Bible"||8||89|
|54||Hermetic and Kabalistic Doctrines||9||91|
|55||The "Kabalah" and the "Book of Enoch"||9||93|
|56||Numbers and Measurer||9||95|
|57||The Doctrine belongs to all||9||97|
|58||Various Occult Systems of Interpretation of Alphabets and Numerals||10||98|
|59||Numbers and Magic||10||99|
|60||Gods and Numbers||10||101|
|61||The Universal Language||10||103|
|62||The Hexagon with the Central Point, or the Seventh Key||11||105|
|64||The Duty of the True Occultist towards Religions||12||109|
|65||Christians and non-Christian Adepts||12||111|
|66||Post-Christian Adepts and their Doctrines||13||112|
|68||The Two Eternal Principles||13||115|
|69||Simon and his Biographer Hippolytus||14||117|
|71||Stones as "Evidences"||14||121|
|72||St. Paul the Real Founder of present Christianity||15||122|
|73||Abrogation of Law by Initiates||15||123|
|74||Paul changed to Simon||15||125|
|75||Peter a Jewish Kabalist,not an Initiate||16||126|
|76||The Seat of Peter||16||127|
|77||Apollonius of Tyana||17||129|
|The following section is in Part 2- of Volume 3|
|78||The Mysterious Teacher||17||131|
|79||Apollonius cannot be Destroyed||17||133|
|80||De Mirville on Apollonius||17||135|
|81||Apollonius no Fiction||17||137|
|82||Facts underlying Adept Biographies||18||138|
|83||Jesus and Apollonius||18||139|
|84||Biographies of Initiates||18||141|
|85||Similarity of Legends||18||143|
|86||Nature of Christ||18||145|
|87||A serious Mistranslation||18||147|
|88||Secret Doctrine of Jesus||18||149|
|89||The Cros and Crucifix||18||151|
|90||The Story of Jesus||18||153|
|91||The Primitive Woman||18||155|
|92||Kabalistic Reading of Gospels||18||157|
|94||St. Cyprian of Antioch||19||160|
|95||Magic in Antioch||19||161|
|96||Sorcerer become Saint||19||163|
|97||The Eastern Gupta Vidya and the Kabalah||20||164|
|98||A Mystery within a Mystery||20||165|
|99||Authorship of the "Zohar"||20||167|
|100||Chaldaic and Hebrew||20||169|
|101||The first Men||20||171|
|102||Many events not Historical||20||173|
|103||The real Hebrew Characters Lost||20||175|
|104||Hebrew Esotericism not Primitive||20||177|
|105||The Concealed of All the Concealed||20||179|
|106||Three-in-One and Four||20||181|
|107||The Septenary Sephira||20||183|
|108||The Blind Leading the Blind||20||185|
|110||The Hebrew Bibles does not Exist||21||187|
|111||Some Hebrews were Initiates||21||189|
|112||The Seven Creative Gods||21||191|
|113||Seven Keys to all Allegories||21||193|
|114||Gerald Massey on the Seven creators||21||195|
|115||The Father and Mother||21||197|
|116||The "Zohar" on Creation and the Elohim||22||199|
|117||Angels as Builders||22||201|
|118||Who are the Elohim?||22||203|
|119||Monad, Duad, and Triad||22||205|
|120||The Creative Gods||22||207|
|121||God the Host||22||209|
|122||What the Occultists and Kabalists have to Say||23||211|
|123||The Mystery of the Sun||23||213|
|124||Modern Kabalists in Science and Occult Astronomy||24||215|
|125||The Place of Neptune||24||217|
|127||Are there Angels in Stars?||24||221|
|128||Eastern and Western Occultism||25||222|
|130||The Great Deep||25||225|
|131||The Chaos of Genesis||25||227|
|132||The Bible of Humanity||25||229|
|133||Chaos is Theos or Kosmos||25||231|
|134||One Hundred and Eight||25||233|
|135||The Idols and the Teraphim||26||234|
|136||Divining by Teraphim||26||235|
|137||Jehovah and Teraphim||26||237|
|138||Idol of the Moon||26||239|
|140||Evidence of Papyri||27||243|
|141||Symbols and their Reading||27||245|
|142||Rebirth and Transmigration||27||247|
|143||The Egyptian Khous||27||249|
|144||Obsession in Egypt||27||251|
|145||Two Rituals of Magic||27||253|
|147||Romances- but True||27||257|
|148||The Origin of the Mysteries||28||258|
|149||An Instant in Heaven||28||259|
|150||Growth of Popular Beliefs||28||261|
|151||A True Priesthood||28||263|
|152||The Egyptian Priests||28||265|
|153||Revealing and Reveiling||28||267|
|155||The Trial of the Sun Initiate||29||270|
|157||The Transmission of Light||29||273|
|158||Masonry and the Jesuits||29||275|
|159||The Mystery "Sun of Initiation"||30||277|
|160||The Sun as God||30||279|
|161||The Object of the Mysteries||31||281|
|162||Mysteries and Theophany||31||283|
|163||The Mysteries and Masonry||31||285|
|164||Traces of the Mysteries||32||287|
|165||Christos and Chrestos||32||289|
|166||The Symbolism of Nârada||32||291|
|168||The Self-sacrificing Victim||32||295|
|170||The Last of the Mysteries in Europe||33||298|
|171||Alexia and Bibractis||33||299|
|172||The Learning of Egypt||33||301|
|173||The Post-Christian Successors to the Mysteries||34||303|
|The following section is in Part 3- of Volume 3|
|174||The Root Races||34||305|
|175||The "False Gnosis"||34||307|
|176||Teachings of Ammonius||34||309|
|177||Difficulties and Dangers||34||311|
|178||The Neo-Platonic School||34||313|
|179||Symbolism of Sun and Stars||35||315|
|180||The Circle Dance||35||317|
|182||Michael the Conqueror||35||321|
|183||The Christian Sun God||35||323|
|184||Pagan Sidereal Worship or Astronomy||36||325|
|185||The Planetary Angels||36||327|
|187||The Promethean Mystery||36||331|
|188||The Souls of the Stars- Universal Heliolatry||37||332|
|189||Christian Star Worship||37||333|
|190||A Singular Confession||37||335|
|191||Astrology and Astrolatry||38||337|
|192||The Defense of Astrology||38||339|
|193||Its Later Deterioration||38||341|
|194||Its Prominent Disciples||38||343|
|195||Cycles and Avatâras||39||345|
|196||An Unfulfilled Prophecy||39||347|
|200||Age of the Vedas||40||353|
|201||Testimony of the Song celestial||40||355|
|203||The Doctrine of the Avatâras||41||361|
|204||All Avatâras Identical||41||363|
|206||Cardinal de Cusa||41||367|
|207||The Seven Rays||41||369|
|209||The Higher Astral||41||373|
|210||The Seven Principles||42||374|
|211||The Mystery of Buddha||43||376|
|213||The Buddha cannot Reincarnate||43||379|
|214||A Fuller Explanation||43||381|
|216||Shankârachârya still Living||43||385|
|217||Reincarnations of Buddha||44||386|
|220||An Obscure Passage||44||391|
|221||An Unpublished Discourse of Buddha||45||393|
|222||A Mistaken View||45||395|
|225||Matter is ever Living||46||399|
|226||Blind Faith not Expected||46||401|
|227||What Annihilation Means||46||403|
|228||The Secret Books of "Lam-Rin" and Dzyan||47||405|
Buddha Kwan-Shai-yin- and Kwan-yin
What the "Book of Dzyan and the Lamaseries of Tsong-Khapa say
|230||Tsong-Khapa- Lohans in China||49||409|
|231||The Lost Word||49||411|
|233||A Few More Misconceptions Corrected||50||414|
|234||Misrepresentations of Buddhism||50||415|
|235||A Mysterious Land||50||417|
|238||Introduction of Buddhism into Tibet||50||423|
|239||The "Doctrine of the Eye" and the "Doctrine of the Heart." or the "Heart's Seal"||51||424|
|241||The God "Who"||51||427|
|246||The Jewel in the Lotus||52||437|
|247||The Pythagorean Triad||52||439|
|248||Seven Correspondential Contents||52||441|
|249||Correspondence between Races and Man||52||443|
|250||Man and the Logos||52||445|
|251||Cosmic, Spiritual and Physical Centres||52||447|
|252||Woman and Alchemy||52||449|
|253||Sound and Colour||52||451|
|254||The days of the Week||52||453|
|256||Astrology and Lunar Weeks||52||457|
|257||Seeing Sounds and Hearing Colours||52||459|
|258||Planetary and Human Bodies||52||461|
|259||Planets and Faculties||52||463|
|260||Simon Magus the Magician||52||465|
|261||Series of Aeons||52||467|
|262||The Triple Aeon||52||469|
|263||Magic and Miracles||52||471|
|264||Magic a Divine Science||52||473|
|265||The Seven Hierarchies||52||475|
|The following section is in Part 4- of Volume 3|
|267||Colours and Principles||52||479|
|268||The Primordial Seven||52||481|
|269||The Hierarchies and Man||52||483|
|270||Wisdom and Truth||52||485|
|272||The Light and Dark Sides of Nature||52||489|
|273||Nature's Finer Forces||52||491|
|274||The "Seven Principles"||52||493|
|275||The Auric Egg||52||495|
|276||Five of Seven Tattvas||52||497|
|278||Esoteric and Tântra Tables of the Tattvas||52||501|
|279||Hatha and Râja Yoga||52||503|
|280||The Awakening of the Seventh Sense||52||505|
|281||The Master Chakras||52||507|
|282||The Human Harp||52||509|
|283||The Duality of Manas||52||511|
|284||The Living and the Dead||52||513|
|286||Light and Life||52||517|
|287||The Two Egos||52||519|
|288||Death of the Soul||52||521|
|289||Reincarnation of Lower Soul||52||523|
|290||The Dweller on the Threshold||52||525|
|292||The Divine Witness||52||529|
|294||A Mantra Operative||52||531|
|295||Colour and Spiritual Sound||52||533|
|297||Notes on some Oral Teachings||52||537|
|298||The Dweller on the Threshold||52|
|299||Fear and Hatred||52||541|
|300||Triangle and Quaternary||52||543|
|301||Prâna and Antahkarana||52||545|
|302||Sacred Centres of the Body||52||547|
|303||Äkâsha Nature's Sounding-Board||52||549|
|305||Divisions of the Astral Plane||52||553|
|308||Men and Pitris||52||559|
|309||Power of Imagination||52||561|
|310||What Cycles Return||52||563|
|311||Talas and Lokas||52||565|
|312||States of consciousness||52|
|313||Man and Lokas||52||569|
|314||Yogis in Svarloka||52||571|
|315||Consciousness and Self-consciousness||52||573|
|316||Scales of Consciousness||52||575|
|317||Vibrations and Impressions||52||577|
|318||The Crucifixion of the Christos||52|
|319||Rising above the Brain||52||581|
|320||Christ and Apollonius||52||583|
|323||Fire is Kriyashakti||52||589|
|323||Responsibility and the Ego||52||591|
|324||Functions of the Astral Body||52||593|
The task of preparing this volume for the press has been a difficult and anxious one, and it is necessary to state clearly what has been done. The papers given to me by H.P.B. were quite unarranged, and had no obvious order; I have therefore taken each paper as a separate Section, and have arranged them as sequentially as possible. With the exception of the correction of grammatical errors and the elimination of obviously un-English idioms, the papers are as H.P.B. left them, save as otherwise marked. In a few cases I have filled in a gap, but any such addition is enclosed within square brackets, so as to be distinguished from the text. In "The Mystery of Buddha" a further difficulty arose; some of the Sections had been written four or five times over, each version containing some sentences that were not in the others; I have pieced these versions together,taking the fullest as basis, and inserting therein everything added in any other versions. It is, however, with some hesitation that I have included these Sections in the Secret Doctrine . Together with some most suggestive thought, they contain very numerous errors of fact, and many statements based on exoteric writings, not on esoteric knowledge. They were given into my hands to publish, as part of the Third Volume of the Secret Doctrine, and I therefore do not feel justified in coming between the author and the public, either by altering the statements, to make them consistent with fact, or by suppressing the Sections. She says she is acting entirely on her own authority, and it will be obvious to any instructed reader that she makes - possibly deliberately - many statements so confused that they are mere blinds, and other statements - probably inadvertently - that are nothing more than the exoteric misunderstandings of esoteric truths. The reader must here, as everywhere, use his own judgment, but feeling bound to publish these Sections, I cannot let them go to the public without a warning that much in them is certainly erroneous. Doubtless, had the author herself issued this book, she would have entirely rewritten the whole of this division; as it was, it seemed best to give all she had said in the different copies, and to leave it in its rather unfinished state, for students will best like to have what she said as she said it, even though they may have to study it more closely than would have been the case had she remained to finish her work.
The quotations made have been as far as possible found, and correct references given; in this most laborious work a whole band of earnest and painstaking students,under the guidance of Mrs. Cooper-Oakley, have been my willing assistants. Without their aid it would not have been possible to give the references, as often a whole book had to be searched through, in order to find a paragraph of a few lines.
This volume completes the papers left by H.P.B., with the exception of a few scattered articles that yet remain and that will be published in her own magazine Lucifer. Her pupils are well aware that few will be found in the present generation to do justice to the occult knowledge of H.P.B., and to her magnificent sweep of thoughts, but as she can wait to future generations for the justification of her greatness as a teacher, so can her pupils afford to wait for the justification of their trust.
( Page 1) "POWER belongs to him who knows;" this is a very old axiom. Knowledge - the first step to which is the power of comprehending the truth, of discerning the real from the false - is for those only who, have freed themselves from every prejudice and conquered their human conceit and selfishness, are ready to accept every and any truth once it is demonstrated to them. Of such there are very few. The majority judge of a work according to the respective prejudices of its critics, who are guided in their turn by the popularity or unpopularity of the author, rather than by its own faults or merits. Outside the Theosophical circle, therefore, the present volume is certain to receive at the hands of the general public a still colder welcome than its two predecessors have met with. In our day no statement can hope for a fair trial, or even hearing, unless its arguments run on the line of legitimate and accepted enquiry, remaining strictly within the boundaries of official Science or orthodox Theology.
Our age is a paradoxical anomaly. It is preëminently materialistic and as preëminently pietistic. Our literature, our modern thought and progress, so called, both run on these two parallel lines, so incongruously dissimilar and yet both so popular and so very orthodox, each in its own way. He who presumes to draw a third line, as a hyphen of reconciliation between the two, has to be fully prepared for the worst. He will have his work mangled by reviewers, mocked by the sycophants of Science and Church, misquoted by his opponents, and rejected even by the pious lending libraries. The absurd misconceptions, in so-called cultured circles of society, of the ancient Wisdom-Religion (Bodhism) after the admirably clear and scientifically-presented explanations in Esoteric Buddhism, are a good proof in point. They might have served as a caution even to those Theosophists who, hardened in an almost life-long struggle in the service of their Cause, are neither timid with their pen, nor in the least appalled by dogmatic (Page 2) assumption and scientific authority. Yet, do what Theosophical writers may, neither Materialism nor doctrinal pietism will ever give their Philosophy a fair hearing. Their doctrines will be systematically rejected, and their theories denied a place even in the ranks of those scientific ephemera, the ever-shifting "working hypotheses" of our day. To the advocate of the "animalistic" theory, our cosmogenetical and anthropogenetical teachings are "fairy-tales" at best. For to those who would shirk any moral responsibility, it seems certainly more convenient to accept descent from a common simian ancestor and see a brother in a dumb, tailless baboon, than to acknowledge the fatherhood of the Pitris, the "Sons of God," and to have to recognise as a brother a starveling from the slums.
"Hold back!" shout in their turn the pietists. "You will never make of respectable church-going Christians Esoteric Buddhists!"
Nor are we, in truth, in any way anxious to attempt the metamorphosis. But this cannot, nor shall it, prevent Theosophists from saying what they have to say, especially to those who, in opposing to our doctrine Modern Science, do so not for her own fair sake, but only to ensure the success of their private hobbies and personal glorification. If we cannot prove many of our points, no more can they; yet we may show how, instead of giving historical and scientific facts - for the edification of those who, knowing less than they, look to Scientists to do their thinking and form their opinions - the efforts of most of our scholars seem solely directed to killing ancient facts, or distorting them into props to support their own special views. This will be done in no spirit of malice or even criticism, as the writer readily admits that most of those she finds fault with stand immeasurably higher in learning than herself. But great scholarship does not preclude bias and prejudice, nor is it a safeguard against self-conceit, but rather the reverse. Moreover, it is but in the legitimate defence of our own statements, i.e., the vindication of Ancient Wisdom and its great truths, that we mean to take our "great authorities" to task.
Indeed, unless the precaution of answering beforehand certain objections to the fundamental propositions in the present work be adopted - objections which are certain to be made on the authority of this, that, or another scholar concerning the Esoteric character of all the archaic and ancient works on Philosophy - our statements will be once more contradicted and even discredited. One of the main points in this Volume is to indicate in the works of the old Aryan, Greek and
One Key to all Sacred Books - (Page 3) other Philosophers of note, as well as in all the world-scriptures, the presence of a strong Esoteric allegory and symbolism. Another of the objects is to prove that the key of interpretation, as furnished by the Eastern Hindu-Buddhistic canon of Occultism - fitting as well the Christian Gospels as it does archaic Egyptian, Greek, Chaldean, Persian, and even Hebrew -Mosaic Books - must have been one common to all the nations, however divergent may have been their respective methods and exoteric "blinds." These claims are vehemently denied by some of the foremost scholars of our day. In his Edinburgh Lectures, Prof. Max Muller discarded this fundamental statement of the Theosophists by pointing to the Hindu Shastras and Pandits, who know nothing of such Esotericism. [ The majority of the Pandits know nothing of the Esoteric Philosophy now, because they have lost the key to it; yet not one of these, if honest, would deny that the Upanishads, and especially the Puranas, are allegorical and symbolical: nor that there still remain in India a few great scholars who could, if they would, give them the key to such interpretations. Nor do they reject the actual existence of Mahâtmâs - initiated Yogis and Adepts - even in this age of Kali Yuga.] The learned Sanskrit scholar stated in so many words that there was no hidden meaning, no Esoteric element or "blinds," either in the Purânas or the Upanishads. Considering that the word "Upanishad" means, when translated, the "Secret Doctrine." the assertion is, to say the least, extraordinary. Sir M. Monier Williams again holds the same view with regard to Buddhism. To hear him is to regard Gautama, the Buddha, as an enemy of every pretence to Esoteric teachings. He himself never taught them! All such "pretences" to Occult learning and "magic powers" are due to the later Arhats, the subsequent followers of the "Light of Asia"! Prof. B. Jowett, again, as contemptuously passes the sponge over the "absurd" interpretations of Plato's Timaeus and the Mosaic Books by the Neoplatonists. There is not a breath of the Oriental (Gnostic) spirit of Mysticism in Plato's Dialogues, the Regius Professor of Greek tells us, nor any approach to Science, either. Finally, to cap the climax, Prof. Sayce, the Assyriologist, although he does not deny the actual presence, in the Assyrian tablets and cuneiform literature, of a hidden meaning -
"Many of the sacred texts . . . . so written as to be intelligible only to the initiated"-
yet insists that the "keys and glosses" thereof are now in the hands of the Assyriologists. The modern scholars, he affirms, have in their possession clues to the interpretation of the Esoteric Records.
"Which even the initiated priests [of Chaldaea] did not possess."
(Page 4) Thus, in the scholarly appreciation of our modern Orientalists and Professors, Science was in its infancy in the days of the Egyptian and Chaldean Astronomers. Pânini, the greatest Grammarian in the world, was unacquainted with the art of writing. So was the Lord Buddha, and everyone else in India until 300 B.C. The grossest ignorance reigned in the days of the Indian Rishis, and even in those of Thales, Pythagoras, and Plato. Theosophists must indeed be superstitious ignoramuses to speak as they do, in the face of such learned evidence to the contrary!
Truly it looks as if, since the world's creation, there has been but one age of real knowledge on earth - the present age. In the misty twilight, in the grey dawn of history, stand the pale shadows of the old Sages of world renown. They were hopelessly groping for the correct meaning of their own Mysteries, the spirit whereof has departed without revealing itself to the Hierophants, and has remained latent in space until the advent of the initiates of Modern Science and Research. The noontide brightness of knowledge has only now arrived at the "Know-All," who, basking in the dazzling sun of induction, busies himself with his Penelopeian task of "working hypotheses," and loudly asserts his rights to universal knowledge. Can anyone wonder, then, that according to present views the learning of the ancient Philosopher, and even sometimes that of his direct successors in the past centuries, has ever been useless to the world and valueless to himself? For, as explained repeatedly in so many words, while the Rishis and the Sages of old have walked far over the arid fields of myth and superstition, the mediaeval Scholar, and even the average eighteenth century Scientist, have always been more or less cramped by their "supernatural" religion and beliefs. True, it is generally conceded that some ancient and also mediaeval Scholars, such as Pythagoras, Plato, Paracelsus, and Roger Bacon, followed by a host of glorious names, had indeed left not a few landmarks over precious mines of Philosophy and unexpected lodes of Physical Science. But then the actual excavation of these, the smelting of the gold and silver, and the cutting of the precious jewels they contain, are all due to the patient labours of the modern man of Science. And it is not to be the unparalleled genius of the latter that the ignorant and hitherto-deluded world owes a correct knowledge of the real nature of the Kosmos, of the true origin of the universe and man, as revealed in the automatic and mechanical theories of the Physicists, in accordance with strictly scientific Philosophy?
Assumptions Have to be Proven - (Page 5) Before our cultured era, Science was but a name, Philosophy a delusion and a snare. According to the modest claims of contemporary authority on genuine Science and Philosophy, the Tree of Knowledge has only now sprung from the dead weeds of superstition, as a beautiful butterfly emerges from an ugly grub. We have, therefore, nothing for which to thank our forefathers. The Ancients have at best prepared and fertilised the soil; it is the Moderns who have planted the seeds of knowledge and reared the lovely plants called blank negation and sterile agnosticism.
Such, however, is not the view taken by Theosophists. They repeat what was stated twenty years ago. It is not sufficient to speak of the "untenable conceptions of an uncultured past" (Tyndall): of the "parler enfantin" of the Vaidic poets (Max Muller); of the "absurdities" of the Neoplatonists (Jowett); and of the ignorance of the Chaldaeo-Assyrian initiated Priests with regard to their own symbols, when compared with the knowledge thereon of the British Orientalist (Sayce). Such assumptions have to be proven by something more solid than the mere word of these scholars. For no amount of boastful arrogance can hide the intellectual quarries out of which the representations of so many modern Philosophers and Scholars have been carved. How many of the most distinguished European Scientists have derived honour and credit for the mere dressing-up of the ideas of these old Philosophers, whom they are ever ready to disparage, is left to an impartial posterity to say. Thus it does seem not altogether untrue, as stated in Isis Unveiled, to say of certain Orientalists and Scholars of dead languages, that they will allow their boundless conceit and self-opinionatedness to run away with their logic and reasoning powers, rather than concede to the ancient Philosophers the knowledge of anything the modern do not know.
As part of this work treats of the Initiates and the secret knowledge imparted during the Mysteries, the statements of those who, in spite of the fact that Plato was an Initiate, maintain that no hidden Mysticism is to be discovered in his works, have to be first examined. Too many of the present scholars, Greek and Sanskrit, are but too apt to forego facts in favour of their own preconceived theories based on personal prejudice. They conveniently forget, at every opportunity, not only the numerous changes in language, but also that the allegorical style in the writings of old Philosophers and the secretiveness of the Mystics had their raison d'être; that both the pre-Christian and the post-Christian (Page 6)classical writers - the great majority at all events - were under the sacred obligation never to divulge the solemn secrets communicated to them in the sanctuaries; and that this alone is sufficient to sadly mislead their translators and profane critics. But these critics will admit nothing of the kind, as will presently be seen.
For over twenty-two centuries everyone who has read Plato has been aware that, like most of the other Greek Philosophers of note, he had been initiated; that therefore, being tied down by the Sodalian Oath, he could speak of certain things only in veiled allegories. His reverence for the Mysteries is unbounded; he openly confesses that he writes "enigmatically," and we see him take the greatest precautions to conceal the true meaning of his words. Every time the subject touches the greater secrets of Oriental Wisdom - the cosmogony of the universe, or the ideal preexisting world - Plato shrouds his Philosophy in the profoundest darkness. His Timaeus is so confused that no one but an Initiate can understand the hidden meaning, As already said in Isis Unveiled:
The speculations of Plato in the Banquet on the creation, or rather the evolution, of primordial men, and the essay on cosmogony in the Timaeus, must be taken allegorically if we accept them at all. It is this hidden Pythagorean meaning in Timaeus, Cratylus, and Parmenides, and a few other triologies and dialogues, that the Neoplatonists ventured to expound, as far as the theurgical vow of secresy would allow them. The Pythagoran doctrine that God is the Universal Mind diffused through all things, and the dogma of the soul's immortality, are the leading features in these apparently incongruous teachings. His piety and the great veneration he felt for the Mysteries are sufficient warrant that Plato would not allow his indiscretion to get the better of that deep sense of responsibility which is felt by every Adept. "Constantly perfecting himself in perfect Mysteries a man in them alone becomes truly perfect," says he in the Phaedrus.
He took no pains to conceal his displeasure that the Mysteries had become less secret than formerly. Instead of profaning them by putting them within the reach of the multitude, he would have guarded them with jealous care against all but the most earnest and worthy of his disciples. [ This assertion is clearly corroborated by Plato himself, who writes: "You say that in my former discourse I have not sufficiently explained to you the nature of the First. I purposely spoke enigmatically, that in case the tablet should have happened with any accident, either by sea or land, a person without some previous knowledge of the subject might not be able to understand its contents." (Plato. Ep., II. 312 Cory. Ancient Fragments. p.304 ] While mentioning the Gods on every page, his monotheism is unquestionable, for the whole thread of his discourse indicates that by the term "God" he means a class of beings lower in the scale than Deities, and but one grade higher than men. Even Josephus perceived and acknowledged this fact, despite the natural prejudice of his race.
The Spirit of Plato's Teaching - (Page 7) In his famous onslaught upon Apion, this historian says;"Those, however, among the Greeks who philosophized in accordance with truth were not ignorant of anything, . . . nor did they fail to perceive the chilling superficialities of the mythical allegories, on which account they justly despised them. . . . By which thing Plato, being moved, says it is not necessary to admit any one of the other poets into the Commonwealth,' and he dismisses Homer blandly, after having crowned him and pouring unguent upon him, in order that indeed he should not destroy by his myths, the orthodox belief in respecting one God." [ Isis Unveiled, i. 287, 288.]
And this is the "God" of every Philosopher, God infinite and impersonal. All this and much more, which there is no room here to quote, leads one to the undeniable certitude that (a) as all the Sciences and Philosophies were in the hands of the temple Hierophants, Plato, as initiated by them, must have known them; and (b), that logical inference alone is amply sufficient to justify anyone in regarding Plato's writings as allegories and "dark sayings," veiling truths which he had no right to divulge.
This established, how comes it that one of the best Greek scholars in England, Prof. Jowett, the modern translator of Plato's works, seeks to demonstrate that none of the Dialogues - including even the Timaeus - have any element of Oriental Mysticism about them? Those who can discern the true spirit of Plato's Philosophy will hardly be convinced by the arguments which the Master of Balliol College lays before his readers. "Obscure and repulsive" to him, the Timaeus may certainly be; but it is as certain that this obscurity does not arise, as the Professor tells his public, "in the infancy of physical science," but rather in its days of secresy; not "out of the confusion of theological, mathematical, and physiological notions," or "out of the desire to conceive the whole of Nature without any adequate knowledge of the parts." [ The Dialogues of Plato, translated by B.Jowett. Regius Professor of Greek at the University of Oxford, 111 5z3.] For Mathematics and Geometry were the backbone of Occult cosmogony, hence of "Theology," and the physiological notions of the ancient Sages are being daily verified by Science in our age; at least, to those who know to read and understand ancient Esoteric works. The "knowledge of the parts" avails us little, if this knowledge only leads us the more to ignorance of the Whole, or the "nature and the reason of the Universal," as Plato called Deity, and causes us to blunder most egregiously because of our boasted inductive methods.
(Page 8) Plato may have been "incapable of induction, or generalization in the modern sense"; [ Op. cit., p.561 ] he may have been ignorant also, of the circulation of the blood, which, we are told, "was absolutely unknown to him," [ Op. cit., p.591 ] but then, there is naught to disprove that he knew what blood is - and this is more than any Physiologist or Biologist can claim nowadays.
Though a wider and far more generous margin for knowledge is allowed the "physical philosopher" by Prof. Jowett than by nearly any other modern commentator and critic, nevertheless, his criticism so considerably outweighs his laudation, that it may be as well to quote his own words, to show clearly his bias. Thus he says:
To bring sense under the control of reason; to find some way through the labyrinth or chaos of appearances, either the highway or mathematics, or more devious paths suggested by the analogy of man with the world and of the world with man; to see that all things have a cause and are tending towards an end - this is the spirit of the ancient physical philosopher. [ This definition places (unwittingly, of course), the ancient "physical philosopher" many cubits higher than his modern "physical" confrère, since the ultima thule of the latter is to lead mankind to believe that neither universe nor man have any cause at all - not an intelligent one at all events - and that they have sprung into existence owing to blind chance and a senseless whirling of atoms. Which of the two hypotheses is the more rational and logical is left to the impartial reader to decide.] But we neither appreciate the conditions of knowledge to which he was subjected, nor have the ideas which fastened upon his imagination the same hold upon us. For he is hovering between matter and mind; he is under the dominion of abstractions; his impressions are taken almost at random from the outside of nature; he sees the light, but not the objects which are revealed by the light; and he brings into juxtaposition things which to us appear wide as the poles asunder, because he finds nothing between them.
The last proposition but one must evidently be distasteful to the modern "physical philosopher," who sees the "objects" before him, but fails to see the light of the Universal Mind, which reveals them, i.e., who proceeds in a diametrically opposite way. Therefore the learned Professor comes to the conclusion that the ancient Philosopher, whom he now judges from Plato's Timaeus, must have acted in a decidedly unphilosophical and even irrational way. For:
He passes abruptly from persons to ideas and numbers, and from ideas and numbers to persons; [ Italics are mine. Every tyro in Eastern Philosophy, every Kabalist, will see the reason for such an association of persons with ideas, numbers, and geometrical figures. For number, says Philolaus, "is the dominant and self-produced bond of the eternal continuance of things." Alone the modern scholar remains blind to the grand truth ] he confuses subject and object, first and final causes, and in dreaming of geometrical figures is lost in a flux of sense.
Self-Contradiction of the Critic - (Page 9) [ Here again the ancient Philosopher seems to be ahead of the modern. For he only "confuses . . . first and final causes" (which confusion is denied by those who know the spirit of the ancient scholarship), whereas his modern successor is confessedly and absolutely ignorant of both. Mr. Tyndall shows Science "powerless" to solve a single one of the final problems of Nature and "disciplined [read, modern materialistic ], imagination retiring in bewilderment from the contemplation of the problems " of the world of matter. He even doubts whether the men of present Science possess "the intellectual elements which would enable them to grapple with the ultimate structural energies of Nature." But for Plato and his disciples, the lower types were but the concrete images of the higher abstract ones: the higher abstract ones: the immortal Soul has an arithmetical, as the body has a geometrical beginning. This beginning, as the reflection of the great universal archaeus (Anima Mundi), is self-moving, and from the centre diffuses itself over the whole body of the Macrocosm.] And now an effort of mind is required on our parts in order to understand his double language, or to apprehend the twilight character of the knowledge and the genius of ancient philosophers which, under such conditions [?], seems by a divine power in many instances to have anticipated the truth. [ Op. cit., page 523.]
Whether "such conditions" imply those of ignorance and mental stolidity in "the genius of ancient philosophers" or something else, we do not know. But what we do know is that the meaning of the sentences we have italicized is perfectly clear. Whether the Regius Professor of Greek believes or disbelieves in a hidden sense of geometrical figures and of the Esoteric "jargon," he nevertheless admits the presence of a "double language" in the writings of these Philosophers. Thence he admits a hidden meaning, which must have had an interpretation. Why, then, does he flatly contradict his own statement on the very next page? And why should he deny to the Timaeus - that preëminently Pythagorean (mystic) Dialogue - any Occult meaning and take such pains to convince his readers that
The influence which the Timaeus has exercised upon posterity is partly due to a misunderstanding.
The following quotation from his Introduction is in direct contradiction with the paragraph which precedes it, as above quoted:
In the supposed depths of this dialogue the Neo-Platonists found hidden meanings and connections with the Jewish and Christian Scriptures, and out of them they dictated doctrines quite at variance with the spirit of Plato. Believing that he was inspired by the Holy Ghost, or had received his wisdom from Moses, [ Nowhere are the Neoplatonists guilty of such an absurdity. The learned Professor of Greek must have been thinking of two spurious works attributed by Eusebius and St. Jerome to Ammonius Saccas, who wrote nothing: or must have confused the Neoplatonists with Philo Judaeus. But then Philo lived over 130 years before the birth of the founder of Neoplatonism. He belonged to the School of Aristobulus the Jew, who lived under Ptolemy Philometer (150 years B.C), and is credited with having inaugurated the movement which tended to prove that Plato and even the Peripatetic Philosophy were derived from the "revealed" Mosaic Books. Valckenaer tries to show that the author of the Commentaries on the Books of Moses, was not Aristobulus, the sycophant of Ptolemy. But whatever he was, he was not a Neoplatonist, but lived before, or during the days of Philo Judaeus - since the latter seems to know his works and follow his methods.] (Page 10) they seemed to find in his writings the Christian Trinity, the Word, the Church . . . and the Neo-Platonists had a method of interpretation which could elicit any meaning out of any words. They were really incapable of distinguishing between the opinions of one philosopher and another, or between the serious thoughts of Plato and his passing fancies. [ Only Clemens Alexandrinus, a Christian Neoplatonist and a very fantastic writer.] . . . [But] there is no danger of the modern commentators on the Timaeus falling into the absurdity of the Neo-Platonists.
No danger whatever of course, for the simple reason that the modern commentators have never had the key to Occult interpretations. And before another word is said in defence of Plato and the Neoplatonists, the learned master of Balliol College ought to be respectfully asked: What does, or can he know of the Esoteric canon of interpretation? By the term "canon" is here meant that key which was communicated orally from "mouth to ear" by the Master to the disciple, or by the Hierophant to the candidate for initiation; this from time immemorial throughout a long series of ages, during which the inner - not public - Mysteries were the most sacred institution of every land. Without such a key no correct interpretation of either the Dialogues of Plato nor of any Scripture, from the Vedas to Homer, from the Zend Avesta to the Mosaic Books, is possible. How then can the Rev. Dr. Jowett know that the interpretations made by the Neoplatonists of the various sacred books of the nations were "absurdities"? Where, again, has he found an opportunity of studying these "interpretations"? History shows that all such works were destroyed by the Christian Church Fathers and their fanatical catechumens, wherever they were found. To say that such men as Ammonius, a genius and a saint, whose learning and holy life earned for him the title of Theodidaktos ("God-taught"), such men as Plotinus, Porphyry, and Proclus, were "incapable of distinguishing between the opinions of one philosopher and another, or between the serious thoughts of Plato and his fancies, " is to assume an untenable position for a Scholar. It amounts to saying that, (a) scores of the most famous Philosophers, the greatest Scholars and Sages of Greece and of the Roman Empire were dull fools, and (b) that all the other commentators, lovers of Greek Philosophy, some of them the acutest intellects of the age - who do not agree with Dr. Jowett - are also fools and no better than those whom they admire. The patronising tone of the last above-quoted passage is modulated with the most naive conceit, remarkable even in our age of self-glorification and mutual admiration cliques.
The Character of Ammonius Saccas - (Page 11) We have to compare the Professor's views with those of some other scholars.
Says Prof. Alexander Wilder of New York, one of the best Platonists of the day, speaking of Ammonius, the founder of the Neoplatonic School:
His deep spiritual intuition, his extensive learning, his familiarity with the Christian Fathers, Pantaenus, Clement, and Athenagoras, and with the most erudite philosophers of the time, all fitted him for the labour which he performed so thoroughly. [ The labour of reconciling the different systems of religion.] He was successful in drawing to his views the greatest scholars and public men of the Roman Empire, who had little taste for wasting time in dialectic pursuits or superstitious observances. The results of his ministration are perceptible at the present day in every country of the Christian world; every prominent system of doctrine now bearing the marks of his plastic hand. Every ancient philosophy has had its votaries among the moderns; and even Judaism . . . has taken upon itself changes which were suggested by the "God-taught" Alexandrian . . . He was a man of rare learning and endowments, of blameless life and amiable disposition. His almost superhuman ken and many excellencies won for him the title of Theodidaktos; but he followed the modest example of Pythagoras, and only assumed the title of Philalethian, or lover of truth. [ New Platonism and Alchemy, by Alex. Wilder, M.D. pp. 7.4.]
It would be happy for truth and fact were our modern scholars to follow as modestly in the steps of their great predecessors. But not they - Philalethians!
Moreover, we know that:
Like Orpheus, Pythagoras, Confucius, Socrates, and Jesus himself, [ It is well-known that, though born of Christian parents, Ammonius had renounced the tenets of the Church - Eusebius and Jerome notwithstanding. Porphyry, the disciple of Plotinus, who had lived with Ammonius for eleven years together, and who had no interest in stating an untruth, positively declares that he had renounced Christianity entirely. On the other hand, we know that Ammonius believed in the bright Gods, Protectors, and that the Neoplatonic Philosophy was as "pagan" as it was mystical. But Eusebius, the most unscrupulous forger and falsifier of old texts, and St. Jerome, an out-and-out fanatic, who had both an interest in denying the fact, contradict Porphyry. We prefer to believe the latter, who has left to posterity an unblemished name and a great reputation for honesty.] Ammonius committed nothing to writing. [ Two works are falsely attributed to Ammonius. One, now lost, called De Consensu Moysis et Jesu, is mentioned by the same "trustworthy" Eusebius, the Bishop of Caesaraea, and the friend of the Christian Emperor Constantine, who died, however, a heathen. All that is known of this pseudo-work is that Jerome bestows great praise upon it (Vir. Illust.,55: and Euseb., H.E.., vi.19). The other spurious production is called the Diatesseron (or the "Harmony of the Gospels"). This is partially extant. But then, again, it exists only in the Latin version of Victor, Bishop of Capua (sixth century), who attributed it himself to Tatian, and as wrongly, probably, as later scholars attributed the Diatesseron to Ammonius. Therefore no great reliance can be placed upon it, nor on its "esoteric" interpretation of the Gospels. Is it this work, we wonder, which led Prof. Jowett to regard the Neoplatonic interpretations as "absurdities"?] Instead he . . . communicated his most (Page 12) important doctrines to persons duly instructed and disciplined, imposing on them the obligations of secresy, as was done before him by Zoroaster and Pythagoras, and in the Mysteries. Except a few treatises of his disciples we have only the declarations of his adversaries from which to ascertain what he actually taught.[Op. cit., p.7.]
It is from the biased statements of such "adversaries." probably, that the learned Oxford translator of Plato's Dialogues came to the conclusion that:
That which was truly great and truly characteristic of him [Plato], his effort to realise and connect abstractions, was not understood by them [the Neoplatonists] at all [?].
He states, contemptuously enough for the ancient methods of intellectual analysis, that:
In the present day . . . an ancient philosopher is to be interpreted from himself and by the contemporary history of thought. [ Op. cit., iii 524.]
This is like saying that the ancient Greek canon of proportion (if ever found), and the Athena Promachus of Phidias, have to be interpreted in the present day from the contemporary history of architecture and sculpture, from the Albert Hall and Memorial Monument, and the hideous Madonnas in crinolines sprinkled over the fair face of Italy. Prof. Jowett remarks that "mysticism is not criticism." No; but neither is criticism always fair and sound judgement.
La critique est aisée, mais l'art est difficile.
And such "art" our critic of the Neoplatonists - his Greek scholarship notwithstanding - lacks from a to z. Nor has he, very evidently, the key to the true spirit of the Mysticism of Pythagoras and Plato, since he denies even in the Timaeus an element of Oriental Mysticism, and seeks to show Greek Philosophy reacting upon the East, forgetting that the truth is the exact reverse; that it is "the deeper and more pervading spirit of Orientalism" that had - through Pythagoras and his own initiation into the Mysteries - penetrated into the very depths of Plato's soul.
But Dr. Jowett does not see this. Nor is he prepared to admit that anything good or rational - in accordance with the "contemporary history of thought" - could ever come out of that Nazareth of the Pagan Mysteries; nor even that there is anything to interpret of a hidden nature in the Timaeus or any other Dialogue. For him,
The so-called mysticism of Plato is purely Greek, arising out of his imperfect knowledge [ "Imperfect knowledge" of what? That Plato was ignorant of many of the modern working hypotheses" - as ignorant as our immediate posterity is sure to be of the said hypotheses when they in their turn after exploding join the "great majority" - is perhaps a blessing in disguise.] and high aspirations, and is the growth of an age in which philosophy is not wholly separated from poetry and mythology.[ Op.cit., p.524.]
Plato a Follower of Pythagoras - (Page 13) Among several other equally erroneous propositions, it is especially the assumptions (a) that Plato was entirely free from any element of Eastern Philosophy in his writings, and (b) that every modern scholar, without being a Mystic and a Kabalist himself, can pretend to judge of ancient Esotericism - which we mean to combat. To do this we have to produce more authoritative statements than our own would be, and bring the evidence of other scholars as great as Dr. Jowett, if not greater, specialists in their subjects, moreover, to bear on and destroy the arguments of the Oxford Regius Professor of Greek.
That Plato was undeniably an ardent admirer and follower of Pythagoras no one will deny. And it is equally undeniable, as Matter has it, that Plato had inherited on the one hand his doctrines, and on the other had drawn his wisdom, from the same sources as the Samian Philosopher. [ I'Histoire Critique du Gnosticisme, by M.J. Matter, Professor of the Royal Academy of Strasburg. "It is in Pythagoras and Plato that we find, in Greece, the first elements of [Oriental] Gnosticism." he says. (Vol.i. pp.48 and 50.)] And the doctrines of Pythagoras are Oriental to the backbone, and even Brâhmanical; for this great Philosopher ever pointed to the far East as the source whence he derived his information and his Philosophy, and Colebrooke shows that Plato makes the same profession in his Epistles, and says that he has taken his teachings "from ancient and sacred doctrines." [ Asiat. Trans.,i. 579.] Furthermore, the ideas of both Pythagoras and Plato coincide too well with the systems of India and with Zoroastrianism to admit any doubt of their origin by anyone who has some acquaintance with these systems. Again:
Pantaenus, Athenagoras, and Clement were thoroughly instructed in the Platonic philosophy, and comprehended its essential unity with the Oriental systems. [ New Platonism and Alchemy. p.4.]
The history of Pantaenus and his contemporaries may give the key to the Platonic, and at the same time Oriental, elements that predominate so strikingly in the Gospels over the Jewish Scriptures.
(Page 14) INITIATES who have acquired powers and transcendental knowledge can be traced back to the Fourth Root Race from our own age. As the multiplicity of the subjects to be dealt with prohibits the introduction of such a historical chapter, which, however historical in fact and truth, would be rejected a priori as blasphemy and fable by both Church and Science - we shall only touch on the subject. Science strikes out, at its own sweet will and fancy, dozens of names of ancient heroes, simply because there is too great an element of myth in their histories; the Church insists that biblical patriarchs shall be regarded as historical personages, and terms her seven "Star-angels" the "historical channels and agents of the Creator." Both are right, since each finds a strong party to side with it. Mankind is at best a sorry herd of Panurgian sheep, following blindly the leader that happens to suit it at the moment. Mankind - the majority at any rate - hates to think for itself. It resents as an insult the humblest invitation to step for a moment outside the old well-beaten tracks, and, judging for itself, to enter into a new path in some fresh direction. Give it an unfamiliar problem to solve, and if its mathematicians, not liking its looks, refuse to deal with it, the crowd, unfamiliar with mathematics, will stare at the unknown quantity, and getting hopelessly entangled in sundry x's and y's, will turn round, trying to rend to pieces the uninvited disturber of its intellectual Nirvana. This may, perhaps, account for the ease and extraordinary success enjoyed by the Roman Church in her conversions of nominal Protestants and Free-thinkers, whose name is legion, but who have never gone to the trouble of thinking for themselves on these most important and tremendous problems of man's inner nature.
And yet, if the evidence of facts, the records preserved in History, and the uninterrupted anathemas of the Church against, "Black Magic" and Magicians of the accursed race of Cain, are not to be heeded, our efforts will prove very puny indeed. When, for nearly two millenniums a body of men has never ceased to lift its voice against Black Magic, the inference ought to be irrefutable that if Black Magic exists as a real fact, there must be somewhere its counterpart - White Magic.
The Protectors of China - (Page 15) False silver coins could have no existence if there were no genuine silver money. Nature is dual in whatever she attempts, and this ecclesiastical persecution ought alone to have opened the eyes of the public long ago. However much travellers may be ready to pervert every fact with regard to abnormal powers with which certain men are gifted in "heathen" countries; however eager they may be to put false constructions on such facts, and - to use an old proverb - "to call white swan black goose," and to kill it, yet the evidence of even Roman Catholic missionaries ought to be taken into consideration, once they swear in a body to certain facts. Nor is it because they choose to see Satanic agency in manifestations of a certain kind, that their evidence as to the existence of such powers can be disregarded. For what do they say of China? Those missionaries who have lived in the country for long years, and have seriously studied every fact and belief that may prove an obstacle to their success in making conversions, and who have become familiar with every exoteric rite of both the official religion and sectarian creeds - all swear to the existence of a certain body of men, whom no one can reach but the Emperor and a select body of high officials. A few years ago, before the war in Tonkin, the archbishop in Pekin, on the report of some hundreds of missionaries and Christians, wrote to Rome the identical story that had been reported twenty-five years before, and had been widely circulated in clerical papers. They had fathomed, it was said, the mystery of certain official deputations, sent at times of danger by the Emperor and ruling powers to their Sheu and Kiuay, as they are called among the people. These Sheu and Kiuay, they explained, were the Genii of the mountains, endowed with the most miraculous powers. They are regarded as the protectors of China, by the "ignorant" masses; as the incarnation of Satanic power by the good and "learned" missionaries.
The Sheu and Kiuay are men belonging to another state of being to that of the ordinary man, or to the state they enjoyed while they were clad in their bodies. They are disembodied spirits, ghosts and larvae, living, nevertheless, in objective form on earth, and dwelling in the fastnesses of mountains, inaccessible to all but those whom they permit to visit them. [ This fact and others may be found in Chinese Missionary Reports, and in a work by Monseigneur Delaplace, a Bishop in China. "Annales de la Propagation de la Foi".]
(Page 16) In Tibet certain ascetics are also called Lha, Spirits, by those with whom they do not choose to communicate. The Sheu and Kiuay, who enjoy the highest consideration of the Emperor and Philosophers, and of Confucianists who believe in no "Spirits," are simply Lohans - Adepts who live in the greatest solitude in their unknown retreats.
But both Chinese exclusiveness and Nature seem to have allied themselves against European curiosity and - as it is sincerely regarded in Tibet - desecration. Marco Polo, the famous traveller, was perhaps the European who ventured farthest into the interior of these countries. What was said of him in 1876 may now be repeated.
The district of the Gobi wilderness, and, in fact, the whole area of Independent Tartary and Tibet is carefully guarded against foreign intrusion. Those who are permitted to traverse it are under the particular care and pilotage of certain agents of the chief authority, and are in duty bound to convey no intelligence respecting places and persons to the outside world. But for this restriction, many might contribute to these pages accounts of exploration, adventure, and discovery that would be read with interest. The time will come, sooner or later, when the dreadful sand of the desert will yield up its long-buried secrets, and then there will indeed be unlooked-for mortifications for our modern vanity.
"The people of Pashai," [ The regions somewhere about Udyana and Kashmir, as the translator and editor of Marco Polo (Colonel Yule) believes (i.x75).] says Marco Polo, the daring traveller of the thirteenth century, "are great adepts in sorceries and the diabolic arts." And his learned editor adds: "This Paschai, or Udyana, was the native country of Padma Sambhava, one of the chief apostles of Lamaism, i.e., of Tibetan Buddhism, and a great master of enchantments. The doctrines of Sakya, as they prevailed in Udyana in old times, were probably strongly tinged with Sivaitic magic, and the Tibetans still regard the locality as the classic ground of sorcery and witchcraft."
The "old times" are just like the "modern times"; nothing is changed as to magical practices except that they have become still more esoteric and arcane, and that the caution of the adepts increases in proportion to the traveller's curiosity. Hiouen-Thsang says of the inhabitants: "The men . . . are fond of study, but pursue it with no ardour. The science of magical formulae has become a regular professional business with them." [ Voyage des Pèlerins Bouddhistes. Vol.1.. Histoire de la Vie de Hiouen-Thsang, etc., traduit du chinois en francais, par Stanislas Julien.] We will not contract the venerable Chinese pilgrim on this point, and are willing to admit that in the seventh century some people made "a professional business: of magic, so, also, do some people now, but certainly not the true adepts. Moreoever, in that century, Buddhism had hardly penetrated into Tibet, and its races were steeped in the sorceries of the Bhon, - the pre-lamaic religion. It is not Hiouen-Thsang, the pious, courageous man who risked his life a hundred times to have the bliss of perceiving Buddh's shadown in the cave of Peshwur, who would have accused the good lamas and monkish thaumaturgists of "making a professional business" of showing it to travellers.
The A B C Of Magic -
(Page 17) The injunction of Gautama, contained in his answer to King Prasenajit, his protector, who called on him to perform miracles, must have been ever-present to the mind of Hiouen-Thsang. "Great king," said Gautama, "I do not teach the law to my pupils, telling them, Go, ye saints, and before the eyes of the Brahmans and householders perform, by means of your supernatural powers, miracles greater than any man can perform.' I tell them when I teach them the law, Live ye saints, hiding your good works, and showing your sins.' "
Struck with the accounts of magical exhibitions witnessed and recorded by travellers of every age who had visited Tartary and Tibet, Colonel Yule comes to the conclusion that the natives must have had "at their command the whole encyclopaedia of modern Spiritualists." Duhalde mentions among their sorceries the art of producing by their invocations the figures of Laotseu [ Lao-tse the Chinese philosopher.] and their divinities in the air, and of making a pencil write answers to questions without anybody touching it." [ The Book of Ser Marco Polo, i.3x8.]
The former invocations pertain to the religious mysteries of their sanctuaries; if done otherwise, or for the sake of gain, they are considered sorcery, necromancy, and strictly forbidden. The latter art, that of making a pencil write without contact, was known and practised in China and other countries before the Christian era. It is the A B C of magic in those countries.
When Hiouen-Thsang desired to adore the shadow of Buddha, it was not to "professional magicians" that he resorted, but to the power of his own soul-invocation; the power of prayer, faith, and contemplation. All was dark and dreary near the cavern in which the miracle was alleged to sometimes take place. Hiouen-Thsang entered and began his devotions. He made one hundred salutations, but neither saw nor heard anything. Then, thinking himself too sinful, he cried bitterly and despaired. But as he was about to give up all hope, he perceived on the eastern wall a feeble light, but it disappeared. He renewed his prayers, full of hope this time, and again he saw the light, which flashed and disappeared again. After this he made a solemn vow: he would not leave the cave till he had the rapture to at last see the shadow of the "Venerable of the Age." He had to wait longer after this, for only after two hundred prayers was the dark cave suddenly "bathed in light, and the shadow of Buddha, of a brilliant white colour, rose majestically on the wall, as when the clouds suddenly open, and all at once display the marvellous image of the Mountain of Light.' A dazzling splendour lighted up the features of the divine countenance. Hiouen-Thsang was lost in contemplation and wonder, and would not turn his eyes away from the sublime and incomparable object." Hiouen-Thsang adds in his own diary, See-yu-kee, that it is only when man prays with sincere faith, and if he has received from above a hidden impression, that he sees the shadow clearly, but he cannot enjoy the sight for any length of time (Max Muller, Buddhist Pilgrims.)
From one end to the other the country is full of mystics, religious philosophers, Buddhist saints and magicians. Belief in a spiritual world, full of invisible beings who, on certain occasions, appear to mortals objectively, is universal. "According (Page 18) to the belief of the nations of Central Asia," remarks I. J. Schmidt, "the earth and its interior, as well as the encompassing atmosphere, are filled with spiritual beings, which exercise an influence, partly beneficent, partly malignant, on the whole of organic and inorganic nature. . . . Especially are deserts and other wild and uninhabited tracts, or regions in which the influences of nature are displayed on a gigantic and terrible scale, regarded as the chief abode or rendez-vous of evil spirits. And hence the steppes of Turan, and in particular the great sand desert of the Gobi, have been looked on as the dwelling place of malignant beings, from the days of hoary antiquity."
The treasures exhumed by Dr. Schliemann at Mycenae, have awakened popular cupidity, and the eyes of adventurous speculators are being turned toward the localities where the wealth of ancient peoples is supposed to be buried, in crypt or cave, or beneath sand or alluvial deposit. Around no other locality, not even Peru, hang so many traditions as around the Gobi Desert. In independent Tartary this howling waste of shifting sand was once, if report speaks correctly, the seat of one of the richest empires the world ever saw. Beneath the surface is said to lie such wealth in gold, jewels, statuary, arms, utensils, and all that indicates civilization, luxury, and fine arts, as no existing capital of Christendom can show today. The Gobi sand moves regularly from east to west before terrific gales that blow continually. Occasionally some of the hidden treasures are uncovered, but not a native dare touch them, for the whole district is under the ban of a mighty spell. Death would be the penalty. Bahti -hideous, but faithful gnomes - guard the hidden treasures of this prehistoric people, awaiting the day when the revolution of cyclic periods shall again cause their story to be known for the instruction of mankind.[ Isis Unveiled, i. 599-601, 603, 598.]
The above is purposely quoted from Isis Unveiled to refresh the reader's memory. One of the cyclic periods has just been passed and we may not have to wait to the end of Maha Kalpa to have revealed something of the history of the mysterious desert, in spite of the Bahti, and even the Rakshasas of India, not less "hideous." No tales or fictions were given in our earlier volumes, their chaotic state notwithstanding, to which chaos the writer, entirely free from vanity, confesses publicly and with many apologies.
It is now generally admitted that, from time immemorial, the distant East, India especially, was the land of knowledge and of every kind of learning. Yet there is none to whom the origin of all her Arts and Sciences has been so much denied as to the land of the primitive Aryas. From Architecture down to the Zodiac, every Science worthy of the name was imported by the Greeks, the mysterious Yavanas - agreeably with the decision of the Orientalists! Therefore, it is but logical that even the knowledge of Occult Science should be refused to India, since of its general practice in that country less is known than in the case of any other ancient people.
Magic as old as man - (Page 19) It is so, simply because:
With the Hindus it was, and is, more esoteric, if possible, than it was even among the Egyptian priests. So sacred was it deemed that its existence was only half admitted, and it was only practised in public emergencies. It was more than a religious matter, for it was [and is still] considered divine. The Egyptian hierophants, notwithstanding the practice of a stern and pure morality, could not be compared for one moment with the ascetical Gymnosophists, either in holiness of life or miraculous powers developed in them by the supernatural abjuration of everything earthly. By those who knew them well they were held in still greater reverence than the magians of Chaldaea. "Denying themselves the simplest comforts of life, they dwelt in woods, and led the life of the most secluded hermits," [ Ammianus Marcellinus, xxiii.6.] while their Egyptian brothers at least congregated together. Notwithstanding the slur thrown on all who practised magic and divination, history has proclaimed them as possessing the greatest secrets in medical knowledge and unsurpassed skill in its practice. Numerous are the volumes preserved in Hindu Mathams, in which are recorded the proofs of their learning. To attempt to say whether these Gymnosophists were the real founders of magic in India, or whether they only practised what has passed to them as an inheritance from the earliest Rishis [ The Rishis - the first group of seven in number lived in days preceding the Vedic period. They are now known as Sages and held in reverence like demigods. But they may now be shown as something more than merely mortal Philosophers. There are other groups of ten, twelve and even twenty-one in number. Haug shows that they occupy in the Brahmanical religion a position answering to that of the twelve sons of Jacob in the Jewish Bible The Brahmans claim to descend directly from the Rishis.] - the seven primeval sages - would be regarded as mere speculation by exact scholars.[ Isis Unveiled, i. 90.]
Nevertheless, this must be attempted. In Isis Unveiled, all that could be stated about Magic was set down in the guise of hints; and thus, owing to the great amount of material scattered over two large volumes, much of its importance was lost upon the reader, while it still more failed to draw his attention on account of the faulty arrangement. But hints may now grow into explanations. One can never repeat it too often - Magic is as old as man. It cannot any longer be called charlantry or hallucination, when its lesser branches - such as mesmerism, now miscalled "hypnotism," "thought reading," "action by suggestion," and what not else, only to avoid calling it by its right and legitimate name - are being so seriously investigated by the most famous Biologists and Physiologists of both Europe and America. Magic is indissolubly blended with Religion of every country and is (Page 20) inseparable from its origin. It is as impossible for History to name the time when it was not, as that of the epoch when it sprang into existence, unless the doctrines preserved by the Initiates are taken into consideration. Nor can Science ever solve the problem of the origin of man if it rejects the evidence of the oldest records in the world, and refuses from the hand of the legitimate Guardians of the mysteries of Nature the key to Universal Symbology. Whenever a writer has tried to connect the first foundation of Magic with a particular country or some historical event or character, further research has shown his hypothesis to be groundless. There is a most lamentable contradiction among the Symbologists on this point. Some would have it that Odin, the Scandinavian priest and monarch, originated the practice of Magic some 70 years B.C.. although it is spoken of repeatedly in the Bible. But as it was proven that the mysterious rites of the priestesses Valas (Voilers) were greatly anterior to Odin's age, [ See Munter "On the most Ancient Religions of the North before Odin.' Mémoires de la Société des Antiquaires de France. ii. 230.] then Zoroaster came in for an attempt on the ground that he was the founder of Magian rites; but Ammianus Marcellinus, Pliny and Arnobius, with other ancient Historians, have shown that Zoroaster was but a reformer of Magic as practised by the Chaldaeans and Egyptians, and not at all its founder. [ Ammianus Marcellinus, xxvi.6.]
Who, then, of those who have consistently turned their faces away from Occultism and even Spiritualism, as being "unphilosophical" and therefore unworthy of scientific thought, has a right to say that he has studied the ancients; or that, if he has studied them, he has understood all they have said? Only those who claim to be wiser than their generation, who think that they know all that the Ancients knew, and thus, knowing far more today, fancy that they are entitled to laugh at their ancient simple-mindedness and superstition; those, who imagine they have discovered a great secret by declaring the ancient royal sarcophagus, now empty of its King Initiate, to be a "corn-bin," and the Pyramid that contained it, a granary, perhaps a wine-cellar! [ "The date of the hundreds of pyramids in the Valley of the Nile is impossible to fix by any of the rules of modern science: Herodotus informs us that each successive king erected one to commemorate his reign, and serve as his sepulchre. But Herodotus did not tell all, although he knew that the real purpose of the pyramid was very different from that which he assigns to it. Were it not for his religious scruples, he might have added that, externally, it symbolized the creative principle of Nature, and illustrated also the principles of geometry, mathematics, astrology and astronomy.]
The Tree of Knowledge - (Page 21) Modern society, on the authority of some men of Science, calls Magic charlatantry. But there are eight hundred millions on the face of the globe who believe in it to this day; there are said to be twenty millions of perfectly sane and often very intelligent men and woman, members of that same society, who believe in its phenomena under the name of Spiritualism. The whole ancient world, with its Scholars and Philosophers, its Sages and Prophets, believed in it. Where is the country in which it was not practised? At what age was it banished, even from our own country? In the New World as in the Old Country ( the latter far younger than the former), the Science of Sciences was known and practised from the remotest antiquity. The Mexicans had their Initiates, their Priest-Hierophants and Magicians, and their crypts of Initiation. Of the two statues exhumed in the Pacific States, one represents a Mexican Adept, in the posture prescribed for the Hindu ascetic, and the other an Aztec Priestess, in a head-gear which might be taken from the head of an Indian Goddess; while the "Guatemalan Medal" exhibits the "Tree of Knowledge" - with its hundreds of eyes and ears, symbolical of seeing and hearing - encircled by the "Serpent of Wisdom" whispering into the ear of the sacred bird.) Bernard Diaz de Castilla, a follower of Cortez, gives some idea of the extraordinary refinement, intelligence and civilization, and also of the magic arts of the people whom the Spaniards conquered by brute force. Their pyramid are those of Egypt, built according to the same secret canon of proportion as those of the Pharaohs, and the Aztecs appear to have derived their civilization and religion in more than one way from the same source as the Egyptians and, before these, the Indians. Among all these three peoples arcane Natural Philosophy, or Magic, was cultivated to the highest degree.
That it was natural, not supernatural, and that the Ancients so regarded it, is shown by what Lucian says of the "laughing Philosopher," Democritus, who, he tells his readers,
Believed in no [miracles] . . . but applied himself to discover the method by which the theurgists could produce them; in a word, his philosophy brought him to the conclusion that magic was entirely confined to the application and the imitation of the laws and the works of nature.
[Internally, it was a majestic fane, in whose sombre recesses were performed the Mysteries, and whose walls had often witnessed the initiation scenes of members of the royal family. The porphyry sarcophagus, which Professor Piazzi Smith, Astronomer Royal of Scotland, degrades into a corn-bin, was the baptismal font, upon emerging from which, the neophyte was born again,' and became an adept.' (Isis Unveiled. i. 518, 519.)]
(Page 22) Who then can still call the Magic of the Ancients "superstition"?
In this respect the opinion of Democritus is of the greatest importance to us, since the Magi left by Xerxes, at Abdera, were his instructors, and he had studied magic, moreover, for a considerable time with the Egyptian priests. [ Diog. Laert., in "Democrit. Vit." ] For nearly ninety years of the one hundred and nine of his life, this great philosopher had made experiments, and noted them down in a book, which, according to Petronius, [ Satyric, ix. 3.] treated of nature - facts that he had verified himself. And we find him not only disbelieving in and utterly rejecting miracles, but asserting that every one of those that were authenticated by eye-witnesses, had, and could have taken place, for all, even the most incredible, were produced according to the "hidden laws of nature." [ Pliny, Hist. Nat.]. . . Add to this that Greece, the "later cradle of the arts and sciences," and India, cradle of religions, were, and one of them still is, devoted to its study and practice - and who shall venture to discredit its dignity as a study, and its profundity as a science? [ Isis Unveiled, I. 512.]
No true Theosophist will ever do so. For, as a member of our great Oriental body, he knows indubitably that the Secret Doctrine of the East contains the Alpha and the Omega of Universal Science; that in its obscure texts, under the luxuriant, though perhaps too exuberant, growth of allegorical Symbolism, lie concealed the corner, and the key-stones of all ancient and modern knowledge. That Stone, brought down by the Divine Builder, is now rejected by the too-human workman, and this because, in his lethal materiality, man has lost every recollection, not only of his holy childhood, but of his very adolescence, when he was one of the Builders himself; when "the morning stars sang together, and the Sons of God shouted for joy." after they had laid the measures for the foundations of the earth - to use the deeply significant and poetical language of Job, the Arabian Initiate. But those who are still able to make room in their innermost selves for the Divine Ray, and who accept, therefore, the data of the Secret Sciences in good faith and humility, they know well that it is in this Stone that remains buried the absolute in Philosophy, which is the key to all those dark problems of Life and Death, some of which, at any rate, may find an explanation in these volumes.
The writer is vividly alive to the tremendous difficulties that present themselves in the handling of such abstruse questions, and to all the dangers of the task. Insulting as it is to human nature to brand truth with the name of imposture, nevertheless we see this done daily and accept it.
Occultism Must Win the Day - (Page 23) For every occult truth has to pass through such denial and its supporters through martyrdom, before it is finally accepted; though even then it remains but too often -
Golden in show, yet but a wreath of thorns.
Truths that rest on Occult Mysteries will have, for one reader who may appreciate them, a thousand who will brand them as impostures. This is only natural, and the only means to avoid it would be for an Occultist to pledge himself to the Pythagorean "vow of silence." and renew it every five years. Otherwise, cultured society - two-thirds of which think themselves in duty bound to believe that, since the first appearance of the first Adept, one half of mankind practised deception and fraud on the other half - cultured society will undeniably assert its hereditary and traditional right to stone the intruder. Those benevolent critics, who most readily promulgate the now famous axiom of Carlyle with regard to his countrymen, of being "mostly fools," having taken preliminary care to include themselves safely in the only fortunate exceptions to this rule, will in this work gain strength and derive additional conviction of the sad fact, that the human race is simply composed of knaves and congenital idiots. But this matters very little. The vindication of the Occultists and their Archaic Science is working itself slowly but steadily into the very heart of society, hourly, daily, and yearly, in the shape of two monster branches, two stray off-shoots of the trunk of Magic - Spiritualism and the Roman Church. Fact works its way very often through fiction. Like an immense boa-constrictor, Error, in every shape, encircles mankind, trying to smother in her deadly coils every aspiration towards truth and light. But Error is powerful only on the surface, prevented as she is by Occult Nature from going any deeper; for the same Occult Nature encircles the whole globe, in every direction, leaving not even the darkest corner unvisited. And, whether by phenomenon or miracle, by spirit-hook or bishop's crook, Occultism must win the day, before the present era reaches "Shani's (Saturn's) triple septenary" of the Western Cycle in Europe, in other words - before the end of the twenty-first century "A.D."
Truly the soil of the long by-gone past is not dead, for it has only rested. The skeletons of the sacred oaks of the ancient Druids may still send shoots from their dried-up boughs and be reborn to a new (Page 24) life, like that handful of corn, in the sarcophagus of a mummy 4.000 years old, which, when planted, sprouted, grew, and "gave a fine harvest." Why not? Truth is stranger than fiction. It may any day, and most unexpectedly, vindicate its wisdom and demonstrate the conceit of our age, by proving that the Secret Brotherhood did not, indeed, die out with the Philalethians of the last Eclectic School, that the Gnosis flourishes still on earth, and its votaries are many, albeit unknown. All this be done by one, or more, of the great Masters visiting Europe, and exposing in their turn the alleged exposers and traducers of Magic. Such secret Brotherhoods have been mentioned by several well-known authors, and are spoken of in Mackenzie's Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia. The writer now, in the face of the millions who deny, repeats boldly, that which was said in Isis Unveiled.
If they [the Initiates] have been regarded as mere fictions of the novelist, that fact has only helped the "brother-adepts" to keep their incognito the more easily. . . .
The St. Germains and Cagliostros of this century, having learned bitter lessons from the vilifications and persecutions of the past, pursue different tactics now-a-days. [ Op. cit., ii.403.]
These prophetic words were written in 1876, and verified in 1886. Nevertheless, we say again,
There are numbers of these mystic Brotherhoods which have naught to do with "civilized" countries; and it is in their unknown communities that are concealed the skeletons of the past. These "adepts" could, if they chose, lay claim to strange ancestry, and exhibit verifiable documents that would explain many a mysterious page in both sacred and profane history. [ This is precisely what some of them are preparing to do, and many a "mysterious page" in sacred and profane history are touched on in these pages. Whether or not their explanations will be accepted - is another question.] Had the keys to the hieratic writings and the secret of Egyptian and Hindu symbolism been known to the Christian Fathers, they would not have allowed a single monument of old to stand unmutilated. [ Ibid.]
But there exists in the world another class of adepts, belonging to a brotherhood also, and mightier than any other of those known to the profane. Many among these are personally good and benevolent, even pure and holy occasionally, as individuals. Pursuing collectively, however, and as a body, a selfish, one-sided object, with relentless vigour and determination, they have to be ranked with the adepts of the Black Art.
Black Magic at Work - (Page 25) These are our modern Roman Catholic "fathers" and clergy. Most of the hieratic writings and symbols have been deciphered by them since the Middle Ages. A hundred times more learned in secret Symbology and the old Religions than our Orientalists will ever be, the personification of astuteness and cleverness, every such adept in the art holds the keys tightly in his firmly clenched hand, and will take care the secret shall not be easily divulged, if he can help it. There are more profoundly learned Kabalists in Rome and throughout Europe and America, than is generally suspected. Thus are the professedly public "brotherhoods" of "black" adepts more powerful and dangerous for Protestant countries than any host of Eastern Occultists. People laugh at Magic! Men of Science, Physiologists and Biologists, deride the potency and even the belief in the existence of what is called in vulgar parlance "Sorcery" and "Black Magic"? The Archaeologists have their Stonehenge in England with its thousands of secrets, and its twin-brother Karnac of Brittany, and yet there is not one of them who even suspects what has been going on in its crypts, and its mysterious nooks and corners, for the last century. More than that, they do not even know of the existence of such "magic halls" in their Stonehenge, where curious scenes are taking place, whenever there is a new convert in view. Hundreds of experiments have been, and are being made daily at the Salpetriere, and also by learned hypnotisers at their private houses. It is now proved that certain sensitives - both men and women - when commanded in trance, by the practitioner, who operates on them, to do a certain thing - from drinking a glass of water up to simulated murder - on recovering their normal state lose all remembrance of the order inspired - "suggested" it is now called by Science. Nevertheless, at the appointed hour and moment, the subject, though conscious and perfectly awake, is compelled by an irresistible power within himself to do that action which has been suggested to him by his mesmeriser; and that too, whatever it may be, and whatever the period fixed by him who controls the subject, that is to say, holds the latter under the power of his will, as a snake holds a bird under its fascination, and finally forces it to jump into its open jaws. Worse than this: for the bird is conscious of the peril; it resists, however helpless in its final efforts, while the hypnotized subject does not rebel, but seems to follow the suggestions and voice of its own free-will and soul. Who of our European men of Science, who believe in such scientific experiments - and very (Page 26) few are they who still doubt them now-a-days, and who do not feel convinced of their actual reality - who of them, it is asked, is ready to admit this as being Black Magic? Yet it is the genuine, undeniable and actual fascination and sorcery of old. The Mulu Kurumbas of Nilgiri do not proceed otherwise in their envoutements when they seek to destroy an enemy, nor do the Dugpas of Sikkim and Bhutan know of any more potential agent than their will. Only in them that will does not proceed by jumps and starts, but acts with certainty; it does not depend on the amount of receptivity or nervous impressibility of the "subjects." Having chosen his victim and placed himself en rapport with them, the Dugpa's "fluid" is sure to find its way, for his will is immeasurably more strongly developed than the will of the European experimenter - the self-made, untutored, and unconscious Sorcerer for the sake of Science - who has no idea (or belief either) of the variety and potency of the world-old methods used to develop this power, by the conscious sorcerer, the "Black Magician" of the East and West.
And now the question is openly and squarely asked: Why should not the fanatical and zealous priest, thirsting to convert some selected rich and influential member of society, use the same means to accomplish his end as the French Physician and experimenter uses in his case with his subject? The conscience of the Roman Catholic priest is most likely at peace. He works personally for no selfish purpose, but with the object of "saving a soul" from "eternal damnation." In his view, if Magic there be in it, it is holy, meritorious and divine Magic. Such is the power of blind faith.
Hence, when we are assured by trustworthy and respectable persons of high social standing, and unimpeachable character, that there are many well-organised societies among the Roman Catholic priests which, under the pretext and cover of Modern Spiritualism and mediumship, hold séances for the purposes of conversion by suggestion, directly and at a distance - we answer: We know it. And when, moreover, we are told that whenever those priest-hypnotists are desirous of acquiring an influence over some individual or individuals, selected by them for conversion, they retire to an underground place, allotted and consecrated by them for such purposes (viz., ceremonial Magic); and there, forming a circle, throw their combined will-power in the direction of that individual, and thus by repeating the process, gain a complete control over their victim - we again answer: Very likely.
Black Magic and Hypnotism - (Page 27) In fact we know the practice to be so, whether this kind of ceremonial Magic and envoûtement is practised at Stonehenge or elsewhere. We know it, we say, through personal experience; and also because several of the writer's best and most loved friends have been unconsciously drawn into the Romish Church and under her "benign" protection by such means. And, therefore, we can only laugh in pity at the ignorance and stubbornness of those deluded men of Science and cultured experimentalists who, while believing in the power of Dr. Charcot and his disciples to "envoûté" their subjects, find nothing better than a scornful smile whenever Black Magic and its potency are mentioned before them. Eliphas Levi, the Abbe-Kabalist, died before Science and the Faculté de Médecine of France had accepted hypnotism and influence par suggestion among its scientific experiments, but this is what he said twenty-five years go, in his Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie, on "Les Envoutements et les Sorts":
That which sorcerers and necromancers sought above all things in their evocations of the Spirit of Evil, was that magnetic potency which is the lawful property of the true Adept, and which they desired to obtain possession of for evil purposes. . . . One of their chief aims was the power of spells or of deleterious influences. . . . That power may be compared to real poisonings by a current of astral light. They exalt their will by means of ceremonies to the degree of rendering it venomous at a distance. . . .We have said in our "Dogma" what we thought of magic spells, and how this power was exceedingly real and dangerous. The true Magus throws a spell without ceremony and by his sole disapproval, upon those with whose conduct he is dissatisfied, and whom he thinks it necessary to punish; [ This is incorrectly expressed. The true Adept of the "Right Hand" never punishes anyone, not even his bitterest and most dangerous enemy: he simply leaves the latter to his Karma, and Karma never fails to do so, sooner or later.] he casts a spell, even by his pardon, over those who do him injury, and the enemies of Initiates never long enjoy impunity for their wrong-doing. We have ourselves seen proofs of this fatal law in numerous instances. The executioners of martyrs always perish miserably; and the Adepts are the martyrs of intelligence. Providence [Karma] seems to despise those who despise them, and puts to death those who would seek to prevent them from living. The legend of the Wandering Jew is the popular poetry of this arcanum. A people had sent a sage to crucifixion; that people had bidden him "Move on!" when he tried to rest for one moment.... well! That people will become subject, henceforth, to a similar condemnation; it will become entirely proscribed, and for long centuries it will be hidden "Move on! move on!" finding neither rest nor pity.[ Op. cit.,ii. 239. 241,240.]
(Page 28) "Fables," and "superstition," will be the answer. Be it so. Before the lethal breath of selfishness and indifference every uncomfortable fact is transformed into meaningless fiction, and every branch of the once verdant Tree of Truth has become dried up and stripped of its primeval spiritual significance. Our modern Symbologist is superlatively clever only at detecting phallic worship and sexual emblems even where none were ever meant. But for the true student of Occult Lore, White or Divine Magic could no more exist in Nature without its counterpart Black Magic, than day without night, whether these be of twelve hours or of six months duration. For him everything in that Nature has an occult - a bright and a night side to it. Pyramids and Druid's oaks, dolmens and Bo-trees, plant and mineral - everything was full of deep significance and of sacred truths of wisdom, when the Arch-Druid performed his magic cures and incantations, and the Egyptian Hierophant evoked and guided Chemnu, the "lovely spectre," the female Frankenstein-creation of old, raised for the torture and test of the soul-power of the candidate for initiation, simultaneously with the last agonising cry of his terrestrial human nature. True, Magic has lost its name, and along with it its rights to recognition. But its practice is in daily use; and its progeny, "magnetic influence," "power of oratory," "irresistible fascination," "whole audiences subdued and held as though under a spell," are terms recognised and used by all, generally meaningless though they now are. Its effects, however, are more determined and definite among religious congregations such as the Shakers, the Negro Methodists, and Salvationists, who call it "the action of the Holy Spirit" and "grace." The real truth is that Magic is still in full sway amidst mankind, however blind the latter to its silent presence and influence on its members, however ignorant society may be, and remain, to its daily and hourly beneficent and maleficent effects. The world is full of such unconscious magicians - in politics as well as in daily life, in the Church as in the strongholds of Free-Thought. Most of those magicians are "sorcerers" unhappily, not metaphorically but in sober reality, by reason of their inherent selfishness, their revengeful natures, their envy and malice. The true student of Magic, well aware of the truth, looks on in pity, and, if he be wise, keeps silent. For every effort made by him to remove the universal cecity is only repaid with ingratitude, slander, and often curses, which, unable to reach him, will react on those who wish him evil. Lies and calumny - the latter a teething lie, adding actual bites to empty harmless falsehoods - become his lot, and thus the well-wisher is soon torn to pieces, as a reward for his benevolent desire to enlighten.
The Philosophy Stands on Its Own Merits - (Page 29) Enough has been given, it is believed, to show that the existence of a Secret Universal Doctrine, besides its practical methods of Magic, is no wild romance or fiction. The fact was known to the whole ancient world, and the knowledge of it has survived in the East, in India especially. And if there be such a Science, there must be naturally, somewhere, professors of it, or Adepts. In any case it matters little whether the Guardians of the Sacred Lore are regarded as living, actually existing men, or are viewed as myths. It is their Philosophy that will have to stand or fall upon its own merits, apart from, and independent of any Adepts. For in the words of the wise Gamaliel, addressed by him to the Synedrion: "If this doctrine is false it will perish, and fall of itself; but if true, then - it cannot be destroyed.
Modern Criticism and the Ancients
(Page 30) THE Secret Doctrine of the Aryan East is found repeated under Egyptian symbolism and phraseology in the Book of Hermes. At, or near, the beginning of the present century, all the books called Hermetic were, in the opinion of the average man of Science unworthy of serious attention. They were set down and loudly proclaimed as simply a collection of tales, of fraudulent pretences and most absurd claims. They "never existed before the Christian era," it was said: "they were all written with the triple object of speculation, deceiving and pious fraud;" they were all, even the best of them, silly apocrypha. [ See in this connection, Pneumatologie des Esprits, by the Marquis de Mirville, who devotes six enormous volumes to show the absurdity of those who deny the reality of Satan and Magic, or the Occult Sciences - the two being with him synonymous.] In this respect the nineteenth century proved a most worthy scion of the eighteenth, for, in the age of Voltaire as well as in this century, everything, save what emanated direct from the Royal Academy, was false, superstitious, foolish. Belief in the wisdom of the Ancients was laughed to scorn, perhaps more so even than it is now. The very thought of accepting as authentic the works and vagaries of "a false Hermes, a false Orpheus, a false Zoroaster," of false Oracles, false Sibyls, and a thrice false Mesmer and his absurd fluid, was tabooed all along the line. Thus all that had its genesis outside the learned and dogmatic precincts of Oxford and Cambridge, [ We think we see the sidereal phantom of the old Philosopher and Mystic - once of Cambridge University - Henry More, moving about in the astral mist over the old moss-covered roofs of the ancient town in which he wrote his famous letter to Glanvil about "witches." The "soul" seems restless and indignant, as on that day of May, 1678, when the doctor complained so bitterly to the author of Sadducismus Triumphatus of Scot, Adie and Webster. "Our new inspired saints," the soul is heard to mutter, "sworn advocates of the witches. . . . who against all sense and reason . . . Will have no Samuel but a confederate knave . . . these in-blown buffoons, puffed up with . . . ignorance, vanity and stupid infidelity!" (See "Letter to Glanvil," and Isis Unveiled, i, 205, 206) ] or the Academy of France, was denounced in those days as unscientific," and "ridiculously absurd." This tendency has survived to the present day.
All Honour to Genuine Scientists - (Page 31) Nothing can be further from the intention of any true Occultist - who stands possessed, by virtue of his higher psychic development, of instruments of research far more penetrating in their power than any as yet in the hands of physical experimentalists - than to look unsympathetically on the efforts that are being made in the area of physical enquiry. The exertions and labours undertaken to solve as many as possible of the problems of Nature have always been holy in his sight. The spirit in which Sir Isaac Newton remarked that at the end of all his astronomical work he felt a mere child picking up shells beside the Ocean of Knowledge, is one of reverence for the boundlessness of Nature which Occult Philosophy itself cannot eclipse. And it may freely be recognised that the attitude of mind which this famous simile describes is one which fairly represents that of the great majority of genuine Scientists in regard to all the phenomena of the physical plane of Nature. In dealing with this they are often caution and moderation itself. They observe facts with a patience that cannot be surpassed. They are slow to cast these into theories, with a prudence that cannot be too highly commended. And, subject to the limitations under which they serve Nature, they are beautifully accurate in the record of their observations. Moreover, it may be conceded further that modern Scientists are exceedingly improbable that any discovery will ever conflict with such or such a theory, now supported by such and such an aggregation of recorded facts. But even in reference to the broadest generalizations - which pass into a dogmatic form only in brief popular text books of scientific knowledge - the tone of "Science" itself, if that abstraction may be held to be embodied in the persons of its most distinguished representatives, is one of reserve and often of modesty.
Far, therefore, from being disposed to scoff at the errors into which the limitations of their methods may betray men of Science, the true Occultist will rather appreciate the pathos of a situation in which great industry and thirst for truth are condemned to disappointment, and often to confusion.
That which is to be deplored, however, in respect to Modern Science, is in itself an evil manifestation of the excessive caution which in its most favourable aspect protects Science from over-hasty conclusions: (Page 32) namely, the tardiness of Scientists to recognise that other instruments of research may be applicable to the mysteries of Nature besides those of the physical plane, and that it may consequently be impossible to appreciate the phenomena of any one plane correctly without observing them as well from the points of view afforded by others. In so far then as they wilfully shut their eyes to evidence which ought to have shown them clearly that Nature is more complex than physical phenomena alone would suggest, that there are means by which the faculties of human perception can pass sometimes from one plane to the other, and that their energy is being misdirected while they turn it exclusively on the minutiae of physical structure or force, they are less entitled to sympathy than to blame.
One feels dwarfed and humbled in reading what M. Renan, that learned modern "destroyer" of every religious belief, past, present and future, has to say of poor humanity and its powers of discernment. He believes
Mankind has but a very narrow mind; and the number of men capable of seizing acutely (finement) the true analogy of things, is quite imperceptible. [ Études Religieuses.]
Upon comparing, however, this statement with another opinion expressed by the same author, namely, that:
The mind of the critic should yield to facts, hand and feet bound, to be dragged by them wherever they may lead him. [ Études Historiques.]
one feels relieved. When, moreover, these two philosophical statements are strengthened by a third enunciation of the famous Academician, which declares that:
Tout parti pris a priori, doit etre banni de la science, [ Mémoire read at the Academie des Inscriptions des Belles Lettres, in 1859.]
there remains little to fear. Unfortunately M. Renan is the first to break this golden rule.
The evidence of Herodotus - called, sarcastically no doubt, the "Father of History," since in every question upon which Modern Thought disagrees with him, his testimony goes for nought - the sober and earnest assurances in the philosophical narratives of Plato and Thucydides, Polybius, and Plutarch, and even certain statements of Aristotle himself, are invariably laid aside whenever they are involved in what modern criticism is pleased to regard as myth. It is some time since Strauss proclaimed that:
What is a Myth? -
(Page 33) The presence of a supernatural element or miracle in a narrative is an infallible sign of the presence in it of a myth;
and such is the canon of criticism tacitly adopted by every modern critic. But what is a myth - μυθος- to begin with? Are we not told distinctly by ancient writers that the word means tradition? Was not the Latin term fabula, a fable, synonymous with something told, as having happened in pre-historic times, and not necessarily an invention. With such autocrats of criticism and despotic rulers as are most of the French, English, and German Orientalists, there may, then, be no end of historical, geographical, ethnological and philological surprises in store for the century to come. Travesties in Philosophy have become so common of late, that the public can be startled by nothing in this direction. It has already been stated by one learned speculator that Homer was simply "a mythical personification of the épopée"; [ See Alfred Maury's Histoire des Religions de la Grèce. i. 248: and the speculations of Holzmann in Zeitschriftfur Vergleichende Sprach forschung, ann. 1882, p.487. sq.] by another, that Hippocrates, son of Esculapius, "could only be a chimera"; that the Asclepiades, their seven hundred years of duration notwithstanding, might after all prove simply a "fiction"; that "the city of Troy (Dr. Schliemann to the contrary) existed only on the maps." etc. Why should not the world be invited after this to regard every hitherto historical character of days of old as a myth? Were not Alexander the Great needed by Philology as a sledge-hammer wherewith to break the heads of Brahmanical chronological pretensions, he would have become long ago simply "a symbol for annexation," or "a genius of conquest," as has been already suggested by some French writer.
Blank denial is the only refuge left to the critics. It is the most secure asylum for some time to come in which to shelter the last of the sceptics. For one who denies unconditionally, the trouble of arguing is unnecessary, and he also thus avoids what is worse, having to yield occasionally a point or two before the irrefutable arguments and facts of his opponent. Creuzer, the greatest of all the modern Symbologists, the most learned among the masses of erudite German Mythologists, must have envied the placid self-confidence of certain sceptics, when he found himself forced in a moment of desperate perplexity to admit that:
We are compelled to return to the theories of trolls and genii, as they were understood by the ancients; [it is a doctrine] without which it becomes absolutely impossible to explain to oneself anything with regard to the Mysteries. [ Creuzer's Introduction des Mystères,iii, 456.]
of the Ancients, which Mysteries are undeniable.
(Page 34) Roman Catholics, who are guilty of precisely the same worship, and to the very letter - having borrowed it from the later Chaldaeans, the Lebanon Nabathaeans, and the baptized Sabaeans, [ The later Nabathaeans adhered to the same belief as the Nazarenes and the Sabaeans, honoured John the Baptist, and used Baptistm. (See Isis Unveiled, ii.127: Munck, Palestine, p.525; Dunlap, Sid, the Son of Man. etc.) ] and not from the learned Astronomers and Initiates of the days of old - would now, by anathematizing it, hide the source from which it came. Theology and Churchianism would fain trouble the clear fountain that fed them from the first, to prevent posterity from looking into it, and thus seeing their original prototype. The Occultists, however, believe the time has come to give everyone his due. As to our other opponents - the modern sceptic and the Epicurean, the cynic and the Sadducee - they may find an answer to their denials in our earlier volumes. As to many unjust aspersions on the ancient doctrines, the reason for them is given in these words in Isis Unveiled:
The thought of the present-day commentator and critic as to the ancient learning, is limited to and runs round the exoterism of the temples; his insight is either unwilling or unable to penetrate into the solemn adyta of old, where the hierophant instructed the neophyte to regard the public worship in its true light. No ancient sage would have taught that man is the king of creation, and that the starry heaven and our mother earth were created for his sake. [i.535.]
When we find such works as Phallicism [ By Hargrave Jennings.] appearing in our day in print, it is easy to see that the day of concealment and travesty has passed away. Science, in Philology, Symbolism and Comparative Religion, has progressed too far to make wholesale denials any longer, and the Church is too wise and cautious not to be now making the best of the situation. Meanwhile, the "rhombs of Hecate" and the "wheels of Lucifer," [ See de Mirville's Pneumatologie, iii, 267 et seq.] daily exhumed on the sites of Babylonia, can no longer be used as clear evidence of a Satan-worship, since the same symbols are shown in the ritual of the Latin Church. The latter is too learned to be ignorant of the fact that even the later Chaldaeans, who had gradually fallen into dualism, reducing all things to two primal Principles, never worshipped Satan or idols, any more than did the Zoroastrians, who now lie under the same accusation, but that their Religion was as highly philosophical as any; their dual and exoteric Theosophy became the heirloom of the Jews, who, in their turn, were forced to share it with the Christians. Parsis are to this day charged with Heliolatry, and yet in the Chaldean Oracles, under the "Magical and Philosophical Precepts of Zoroaster" one finds the following:
Chaldean Oracles - (Page 35)
Direct not thy mind to the vast measures of the earth;
For the plant of truth is not upon ground.
Nor measure the measures of the sun, collecting rules,
For he is carried by the eternal will of the Father, not for your sake.
Dismiss the impetuous course of the moon; for she runs always by work of necessity.
The progression of the stars was not generated for your sake.
There was a vast difference between the true worship taught to those who showed themselves worthy, and the state religions. The Magians are accused of all kinds of superstition, but this is what the same Chaldaean Oracle says:
The wide aerial flight of birds is not true,
Nor the dissections of the entrails of victims; they are all mere toys,
The basis of mercenary fraud; flee from these
If you would open the sacred paradise of piety,
Where virtue, wisdom, and equity are assembled.
[ Psellus, 4: in Cory's Ancient Fragments. 269.]
As we say in our former work:
Surely it is not those who warn people against "mercenary fraud" who can be accused of it; and if they accomplished acts which seem miraculous, who can with fairness presume to deny that it was done merely because they possessed a knowledge of natural philosophy and psychological science to a degree unknown to our schools? [ Isis Unveiled, i, 535, 536.]
The above quoted stanzas are a rather strange teaching to come from those who are universally believed to have worshipped the sun, and moon, and the starry hosts, as Gods. The sublime profundity of the Magian precepts being beyond the reach of modern materialistic thought, the Chaldean Philosophers are accused of Sabaeanism and Sun-worship, which was the religion only of the uneducated masses.
The Origin of Magic
(Page 36) THINGS of late have changed, true enough. The field of investigation has widened; old religions are a little better understood; and since that miserable day when the Committee of the French Academy, headed by Benjamin Franklin, investigated Mesmer’s phenomena only to proclaim them charlatanry and clever knavery, both heathen Philosophy and Mesmerism have acquired certain rights and privileges, and are now viewed from quite a different standpoint. Is full justice rendered them, however, and are they any better appreciated? We are afraid not. Human nature is the same now, as when Pope said of the force of prejudice that:
The difference is as great between
The optics seeing, as the objects seen.
All manners take a tincture from our own,
Or some discolour’d through our passions shown,
Or fancy’s beam enlarges, multiplies,
Contracts, inverts, and gives ten thousand dyes.
Thus in the first decades of our century Hermetic Philosophy was regarded by both Churchmen and men of Science from two quite opposite points of view. The former called it sinful and devilish; the latter denied point-blank its authenticity, notwithstanding the evidence brought forward by the most erudite men of every age, including our own. The learned Father Kircher, for instance, was not even noticed; and his assertion that all the fragments known under titles of works by Mercury Trismegistus, Berosus, Pherecydes of Syros, etc., were rolls that had escaped the fire which devoured 100,000 volumes of the great Alexandrian Library - was simply laughed at. Nevertheless the educated classes of Europe knew then, as they do now, that the famous Alexandrian Library, the “marvel of the ages,” was founded by Ptolemy Philadelphus; that numbers of its MSS, had been carefully copied from hieratic texts and the oldest parchments, Chaldaean, Phoenician, Persian, etc; and that these transliterations and copies amounted, in their turn, to another 100,000 rolls, as Josephus and Strabo assert.
The Books of Hermes - (Page 37) There is also the additional evidence of Clemens Alexandrinus, that ought to be credited to some extent.[ The forty-two Sacred Books of the Egyptians mentioned by Clement of Alexandria as having existed in his time, were but a portion of the Books of Hermes. Iamblichus, on the authority of the Egyptian priest Abammon, attributes 1,200 of such books to Hermes, and Manetho 36.000. But the testimony of Iamblichus as a Neoplatonist and Theurgist is of course rejected by modern critics. Manetho, who is held by Bunsen in the highest consideration as a “purely-historical personage,” with whom “none of the later native historians can be compared” (see Egypte, i. 97) suddenly becomes a Pseudo-Manetho, as soon as the ideas propounded by him clash with the scientific prejudices against Magic and the Occult knowledge claimed by the ancient priests. However, none of the Archaeologists doubt for a moment the almost incredible antiquity of the Hermetic books. Champollion shows the greatest regard for their authenticity and truthfulness, corroborated as it is by many of the oldest monuments. And Bunsen brings irrefutable proofs of their age. From his researches, for instance, we learn that there was a line of sixty-one kings before the days of Moses, who preceded the Mosaic period by a clearly-traceable civilization of several thousand years. Thus we are warranted in believing that the works of Hermes Trismegistus were extant many ages before the birth of the Jewish law-giver. “Styli and inkstands were found on monuments of the fourth Dynasty, the oldest in the world,” says Bunsen. If the eminent Egyptologist rejects the period of 48.863 years before Alexander, to which Diogenes Laertius carries back the records of the priests, he is evidently more embarrassed with the ten thousand of astronomical observations, and remarks that “if they were actual observations, they must have extended over 10.000 years” (p.44). “We learn, however,” he adds, “from one of their own old chronological works . . . that the genuine Egyptian traditions concerning the mythological period treated of myriads of years.” (Egypte, i, 15: Isis Unveiled, i. 33)] Clemens testified to the existence of an additional 30,000 volumes of the Books of Thoth, placed in the library of the Tomb of Osymandias, over the entrance of which were inscribed the words, “A Cure for the Soul.”
Since then, as all know, entire texts of the “apocryphal” works of the “false” Pymander, and the no less “false” Asclepias, have been found by Champollion in the most ancient monuments of Egypt. [ These details are taken from Pneumatologie, iii, pp, 204, 205 ] As said in Isis Unveiled:
After having devoted their whole lives to the study of the records of the old Egyptian wisdom, both Champollion-Figeac and Champollion Junior publicly declared, notwithstanding many biased judgments hazarded by certain hasty and unwise critics, that the Books of Hermes “truly contain a mass of Egyptian traditions which are constantly corroborated by the most authentic records and monuments of Egypt of the hoariest antiquity.” [ Egypte, p.143 Isis Unveiled, i. 625.]
The merit of Champollion as an Egyptologist none will question, and if he declare that everything demonstrates the accuracy of the writings of the mysterious Hermes Trismegistus, and if the assertion that their antiquity runs back into the night of time be corroborated by him in (Page 38)minutest details, then indeed criticism ought to be fully satisfied. Says Champollion:
These inscriptions are only the faithful echo and expression of the most ancient verities.
Since these words were written, some of the “apocryphal” verses by the “mythical” Orpheus have also been found copied word for word, in hieroglyphics, in certain inscriptions of the Fourth Dynasty, addressed to various Deities. Finally, Creuzer discovered and immediately pointed out the very significant fact that numerous passages found in Homer and Hesiod were undeniably borrowed by the two great poets from the Orphic Hymns, thus proving the latter to be far older than the Iliad or the Odyssey.
And so gradually the ancient claims come to be vindicated, and modern criticism has to submit to evidence. Many are now the writers who confess that such a type of literature as the Hermetic works of Egypt can never be dated too far back into the prehistoric ages. The texts of many of these ancient works, that of Enoch included, so loudly proclaimed “apocryphal” at the beginning of this century, are now discovered and recognised in the most secret and sacred sanctuaries of Chaldaea, India, Phoenicia, Egypt and Central Asia. But even such proofs have failed to convince the bulk of our Materialists. The reason for this is very simple and evident. All these texts - held in universal veneration in Antiquity, found in the secret libraries of all the great temples, studied (if not always mastered) by the greatest statesmen, classical writers, philosophers, kings and laymen, as much as by renowned Sages - what were they? Treatises on Magic and Occultism, pure and simple; the now derided and tabooed Theosophy - hence the ostracism.
Were people, then, so simple and credulous in the days of Pythagoras and Plato? Were the millions of Babylonia and Egypt, of India and Greece, with their great Sages to lead them, all fools, that during those periods of great learning and civilization which preceded the year one of our era - the latter giving birth but to the intellectual darkness of mediaeval fanaticism - so many otherwise great men should have devoted their lives to a mere illusion, a superstition called Magic? It would seem so, had one to remain content with the word and conclusions of modern Philosophy.
Every Art and Science, however, whatever its intrinsic merit, has had its discoverer and practitioner, and subsequently its proficients to teach it.
What is the Origin of Magic? - (Page 39) What is the origin of the Occult Sciences, or Magic? Who were its professors, and what is known of them, whether in history or legend? Clemens Alexandrinus, one of the most intelligent and learned of the early Christian Fathers, answers this question in his Stromateis. That ex-pupil of the Neoplatonic School argues:
If there is instruction, you must seek for the master. [ Strom., VI, vii. The following paragraph from the same chapter.]
And so he shows Cleanthes taught by Zeno, Theophrastus by Aristotle, Metrodorus by Epicurus, Plato by Socrates, etc. And he adds that when he had looked further back to Pythagoras, Pherecydes, and Thales, he had still to search for their masters. The same for the Egyptians, the Indians, the Babylonians, and the Magi themselves. He would not cease questioning, he says, to learn who it was they all had for their masters. And when he (Clemens) had traced down the enquiry to the very cradle of mankind, to the first generation of men, he would reiterate once more his questioning, and ask, “Who is their teacher?” Surely, he argues, their master could be “no one of men.” And even when we should have reached as high as the Angels, the same query would have to be offered to them: “Who were their (meaning the ‘divine’ and the ‘fallen’ Angels) masters?’
The aim of the good father’s long argument is of course to discover two distinct masters, one the preceptor of biblical patriarchs, the other the teacher of the Gentiles. But the students of the Secret Doctrine need go to no such trouble. Their professors are well aware who were the Masters of their predecessors in Occult Sciences and Wisdom.
The two professors are finally traced out by Clemens, and are, as was to be expected, God, and his eternal and everlasting enemy and opponent, the Devil; the subject of Clemens’ enquiry relating to the dual aspect of Hermetic Philosophy, as cause and effect. Admitting the moral beauty of the virtues preached in every Occult work with which he was acquainted, Clemens desires to know the cause of the apparent contradiction between the doctrine and the practice, good and evil Magic, and he comes to the conclusion that Magic has two origins - divine and diabolical. He perceives its bifurcation into two channels, hence his deduction and inference.
We perceive it too, without, however, necessarily designating such bifurcation diabolical, for we judge the “left-hand path” as it (Page 40) issued from the hands of its founder. Otherwise, judging also by the effects of Clemens’ own religion and walk in life of certain of its professors, since the death of their Master, the Occultists would have a right to come to somewhat the same conclusion as Clemens. They would have a right to say that while Christ, the Master of all true Christians, was in every way godly, those who resorted to the horrors of the Inquisition, to the extermination and torture of heretics, Jews and Alchemists, the Protestant Calvin who burnt Servetus , and his persecuting Protestant successors, down to the whippers and burners of witches in America, must have had for their Master, the Devil. But Occultists, not believing in the Devil, are precluded from retaliating in this way.
Clemens’ testimony, however, is valuable in so far as it shows (1) the enormous number of works on Occult Sciences in his day; and (2) the extraordinary powers acquired through those Sciences by certain men.
He devotes, for instance, the whole of the sixth book of his Stromateis to this research for the first two “Masters” or the true and the false Philosophy respectively, both preserved, as he says, in the Egyptian sanctuaries. Very pertinently too, he apostrophises the Greeks, asking them why they should not accept the “miracles” of Moses as such, since they claim the very same privileges for their own Philosophers, and he gives a number of instances. It is, as he says, Aeachus obtaining through his Occult powers a marvellous rain; it is Aristaeus causing the winds to blow; Empedocles quieting the gale, and forcing it to cease etc.[ See Pneumatologie, iii.207 Therefore Empedocles is called κωλυθαυεμοςthe “dominator of the wind.” Strom., VI. iii.]
The books of Mercurius Trismegistus most attracted his attention. [ Ibid. iv.] He is also warm in his praise of Hystaspes (or Gushtasp), of the Sibylline books, and even of the right Astrology.
There have been in all ages use and abuse of Magic, as there are use and abuse of Mesmerism or Hypnotism in our own. The ancient world had its Apollonii and its Pherecydae, and intellectual people could discriminate then, as they can now. While no classical or pagan writer has ever found one word of blame for Apollonius of Tyana, for instance, it is not so with regard to Pherecydes. Hesychius of Miletia, Philo of Byblos and Eusthathius charges the latter unstintingly with having built his Philosophy and Science on demoniacal traditions - i.e., on Sorcery.
Pherecydes of Syros - (Page 41) Cicero declares that Pherecydes is, potius divinus quam medicus, rather a soothsayer than a physician,” and Diogenes Laertius gives a vast number of stories relating to his predictions. One day Pherecydes prophesies the shipwreck of a vessel hundreds of miles away from him; another time he predicts the capture of Lacedaemonians by the Arcadians; finally, he foresees his own wretched end. [ Summarised from Pneumatologie, iii.209.]
Bearing in mind the objections that will be made to the teachings of the Esoteric Doctrine as herein propounded, the writer is forced to meet some of them beforehand.
Such imputations as those brought by Clemens against the “heathen” Adepts, only prove the presence of clairvoyant powers and prevision in every age, but are no evidence in favour of a Devil. They are, therefore, of no value except to the Christians, for whom Satan is one of the chief pillars of the faith. Baronius and De Mirville, for instance, find an unanswerable proof of Demonology in the belief in the co-eternity of Matter with Spirit!
De Mirville writes that Pherecydes
Postulates in principle the primordiality of Zeus or Ether, and then, on the same plane, a principle, coeternal and coactive, which he calls the fifth element, or Ogenos. [ Loc. cit.]
He then points out that the meaning of Ogenos is given as that which shuts up, which holds captive, and that is Hades, “or in a word, hell.”
The synonyms are known to every schoolboy without the Marquis going to the trouble of explaining them to the Academy; as to the deduction, every Occultist will of course deny it and only smile at its folly. And now we come to the theological conclusion.
The resumé of the views of the Latin Church - as given by authors of the same characters as the Marquis de Mirville - amounts to this: that the Hermetic Books, their wisdom - fully admitted in Rome - notwithstanding, are “the heirloom left by Cain, the accursed, to mankind.” It is “generally admitted,” says that modern memorialist of Satan in History:
That immediately after the Flood Cham and his descendants had propagated anew the ancient teachings of the Cainites and of the surmerged Race.[Op. cit., iii 208 ]
(Page 42) This proves, at any rate, that Magic, or Sorcery as he calls it, is an antediluvian Art, and thus one point is gained. For, as he says:-
The evidence of Berosius makes Ham identical with the first Zoroaster, founder of Bactria, the first author of all the magic arts of Babylonia, the Chemesenua or Cham, [The English speaking people who spell the name of Noah's disrespectful son “Ham” have to be reminded that the right spelling is “Kham” or “Cham”] the infamous [ Black Magic, or Sorcery, is the evil result obtained in any shape or way through the practice of Occult Arts: hence it has to be judged only by its effects. The name of neither Ham nor Cain, when pronounced, has ever killed any one; whereas, if we have to believe that same Clemens Alexandrinus who traces the teacher of every Occultist, outside of Christianity, to the Devil, the name of Jehovah (pronounced Jevo and in a peculiar way) had the effect of killing a man at a distance. The mysterious Schemham-phorasch was not always used for holy purposes by the Kabalists, especially since the Sabbath or Saturday, sacred to Saturn or the evil Shani, became - with the Jews - sacred to “Jehovah.”] of the faithful Noachians, finally the object of adoration for Egypt, which having received its name χημεια, whence chemistry, built in his honour a town called Choemnis, or the “city of fire.” [ Khoemnis, the pre-historic city, may or may not have been built by Noah's son, but it was not his name that was given to the town, but that of the Mystery Goddess Khoemnu or Khoemnis (Greek form); the deity that was created by the ardent fancy of the neophyte, who was thus tantalised during his “twelve labours” of probation before his final initiation. Her male counterpart is Khem. The city of Choemnis or Khemmis (today Akhmem) was the chief seat of the God Khem. The Greeks identifying Khem with Pan, called this city “Panopolis.”] Ham adored it, it is said, whence the name Chammaim given to the pyramids; which in their turn have been vulgarised into our modern noun “chimney.” [ Pneumatologie, iii, 210. This looks more like pious vengeance than philology. The picture, however, seems incomplete, as the author ought to have added to the “chimney” a witch flying out of it on a broomstick.]
This statement is entirely wrong. Egypt was the cradle of Chemistry and its birth-place - this is pretty well known by this time. Only Kenrick and others show the root of the word to be chemi or chem, which is not Chem or Ham, but Khem, the Egyptian phallic God of the Mysteries.
But this is not all. De Mirville is bent upon finding a satanic origin even for the now innocent Tarot.
He goes on to say:
As to the means for the propagation of this evil Magic, tradition points it out, in certain runic characters traced on metallic plates [or leaves, des lames] which have escaped destruction by the Deluge [ How could they escape from the Deluge unless God so willed it? This is scarcely logical.] This might have been regarded as legendary, had not subsequent discoveries shown it far from being so. Plates were found covered with curious and utterly undecipherable characters, characters of undeniable antiquity, to which the Chamites [Sorcerers, with the author] attribute the origin to their marvellous and terrible powers. [ Loc. cit., p.210 ]
The pious author may, meanwhile, be left to his own orthodox beliefs.
Cain, Mathematical and Anthropomorphic - (Page 43) He, at any rate, seems quite sincere in his views. Nevertheless, his able arguments will have to be sapped at their very foundation, for it must be shown on mathematical grounds who, or rather what, Cain and Ham really were. De Mirville is only the faithful son of his Church, interested in keeping Cain in his anthropomorphic character and in his present place in “Holy Writ.” The student of Occultism, on the other hand, is solely interested in the truth. But the age has to follow the natural course of evolution.
The Secresy of Initiates
(Page 44) THE false rendering of a number of parables and sayings of Jesus is not to be wondered at in the least. From Orpheus, the first initiated Adept of whom history catches a glimpse in the mists of the pre-Christian era, down through Pythagoras, Confucius, Buddha, Jesus, Apollonius of Tyana, to Ammonius Saccas, no Teacher or Initiate has ever committed to writing for public use. Each and all of them have invariably recommended silence and secresy on certain facts and deeds, from Confucius, who refused to explain publicly and satisfactorily what he meant by his “Great Extreme,” or to give the key to the divination by “straws” down to Jesus, who charged his disciples to tell no man that he was Christ [ Matthew, xvi. 20.] (Chrestos), the “man of sorrows” and trials, before his supreme and last Initiation, or that he had produced a “miracle,” of resurrection. [ Mark, v. 43.] The Apostles had to preserve silence, so that the left hand should not know what the right hand did; in plainer words, that the dangerous proficients in the Left Hand Science - the terrible enemies of the Right Hand Adepts, especially before their supreme Initiation - should not profit by the publicity so as to harm both the healer and the patient. And if the above is maintained to be simply an assumption, then what may be the meaning of these awful words:
Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the Kingdom of God; but unto them that are without all these things are done in parables; that seeing they may see and not perceive; and hearing, they may hear and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted and their sins should be forgiven them.[ Mark, iv.11.]
Exoteric and Esoteric Teachings - (Page 45) Unless interpreted in the sense of the law of silence and Karma, the utter selfishness and uncharitable spirit of this remark are but too evident. These words are directly connected with the terrible dogma of predestination. Will the good and intelligent Christian cast such a slur of cruel selfishness on his Saviour? [ It is not evident that the words: “lest at any time they should be converted (or: “lest haply they should turn again” - as in the revised version) and their sins be forgiven them” - do not at all mean to imply that Jesus feared that through repentance any outsider, or “them that are without,” should escape damnation, as the literal dead-letter sense plainly shows - but quite a different thing? Namely, “lest any of the profane should by understanding his preaching, undisguised by parable, get hold of some of the secret teachings and mysteries of Initiation - and even of Occult powers? “Be converted” is, in other words, to obtain a knowledge belonging exclusively to the Initiated: “and their sins be forgiven them,” that is, their sins would fall upon the illegal revealer, on those who had helped the unworthy reap there where they have never laboured to sow, and had given them, thereby, the means of escaping on this earth their deserved Karma, which must thus re-act on the revealer, who, instead of good, did harm and failed.]
The work of propagating such truths in parables was left to the disciples of the high Initiates. It was their duty to follow the key-note of the Secret Teaching without revealing its mysteries. This is shown in the histories of all the great Adepts. Pythagoras divided his classes into hearers of exoteric and esoteric lectures. The Magians received their instructions and were initiated in the far hidden caves of Bactria. When Josephus declares that Abraham taught Mathematics he meant by it “Magic,” for in the Pythagorean code Mathematics mean Esoteric Science, or Gnosis.
Professor Wilder remarks:
The Essenes of Judea and Carmel made similar distinctions, dividing their adherents into neophytes, brethren and the perfect . . . . Ammonius obligated his disciples by oath not to divulge his higher doctrines, except to those who had been thoroughly instructed and exercised [prepared for initiation]. [ New Platonism and Alchemy, 1869. pp. 7. 9.]
One of the most powerful reasons for the necessity of strict secresy is given by Jesus Himself, if one may credit Matthew. For there the Master is made to say plainly:
Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine; lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you. [ vii. 6.]
Profoundly true and wise words. Many are those in our own age, and even among us, who have been forcibly reminded of them - often when too late. [ History is full of proofs of the same. Had not Anaxagoras enunciated the great truth taught in the Mysteries, viz., that the sun was surely larger than the Peloponnesus, he would not have been persecuted and nearly put to death by the fanatical mob. Had that other rabble which was raised against Pythagoras understood what the mysterious Sage of Crotona meant by giving out his remembrances of having been the “Son of Mercury” - God of the Secret Wisdom - he would not have been forced to fly for his life: nor would Socrates have been put to death, had he kept secret the revelations of his divine Daimon. He knew how little his century - save those initiated - would understand his meaning, had he given out all he knew of the moon. Thus he limited his statement to an allegory, which is now proven to have been more scientific than was hitherto believed. He maintained that the moon was inhabited and that the lunar beings lived in profound, vast and dark valleys, our satellite being airless and without any atmosphere outside such profound valleys; this, disregarding the revelation full of meaning for the few only, must be so of necessity. If there is any atmosphere on our bright Selene at all. The facts recorded is the secret annals of the Mysteries had to remain veiled under penalty of death.]
(Page 46) Even Maimonides recommends silence with regard to the true meaning of the Bible texts. This injunction destroys the usual affirmation that “Holy Writ” is the only book in the world whose divine oracles contain plain unvarnished truth. It may be so for the learned Kabalists; it is certainly quite the reverse with regard to Christians. For this is what the learned Hebrew Philosopher says:
Whoever shall find out the true sense of the Book of Genesis ought to take care not to divulge it. This is a maxim that all our sages repeat to us, and above all respecting the work of the six days. If a person should discover the true meaning of it by himself, or by the aid of another, then he ought to be silent, or if he speaks he ought to speak of it obscurely, in an enigmatical manner, as I do myself, leaving the rest to be guessed by those who can understand me.
The Symbology and Esoterism of the Old Testament being thus confessed by one of the greatest Jewish Philosophers, it is only natural to find Christian Fathers making the same confession with regard to the New Testament, and the Bible in general. Thus we find Clemens Alexandrinus and Origen admitting it as plainly as words can do it. Clemens, who had been initiated into the Eleusinian Mysteries says, that:
The doctrines there taught contained in them the end of all instructions as they were taken from Moses and the prophets,
a slight perversion of facts pardonable in the good Father. The words admit, after all, that the Mysteries of the Jews were identical with those of the Pagan Greeks, who took them from the Egyptians, who borrowed them, in their turn, from the Chaldaeans, who got them from the Aryans, the Atlanteans and so on - far beyond the days of that Race. The secret meaning of the Gospel is again openly confessed by Clemens when he says that the Mysteries of the Faith are not to be divulged to all.
But since this tradition is not published alone for him who perceives the magnificence of the word; it is requisite, therefore, to hide in a Mystery the wisdom spoken, which the Son of God taught. [ Stromateis, xii.]
Origen on “Genesis” - (Page 47) Not less explicit is Origen with regard to the Bible and its symbolical fables. He exclaims:
If we hold to the letter, and must understand what stands written in the law after the manner of the Jews and common people, then I should blush to confess aloud that it is God who has given these laws; then the laws of men appear more excellent and reasonable. [ See Homilies 7., quoted in the Source of Measures, p.307.]
And well he might have “blushed,” the sincere and honest Father of early Christianity in its days of relative purity. But the Christians of this highly literary and civilised age of ours do not blush at all; they swallow, on the contrary, the “light” before the formation of the sun, the Garden of Eden, Jonah’s whale and all, notwithstanding that the same Origen asks in a very natural fit of indignation:
What man of sense will agree with the statement that the first, second and third days in which the evening is named and the morning, were without sun, moon , and stars, and the first day without a heaven? What man is found such an idiot as to suppose that God planted trees in Paradise, in Eden, like a husbandman, etc? I believe that every man must hold these things for images, under which a hidden sense lies concealed. [ Origen: Huet., Origeniana,167: quoted from Dunlop’s Sid. p. 176.]
Yet millions of “such idiots” are found in our age of enlightenment and not only in the third century. When Paul’s unequivocal statement in Galatians, iv. 22-25, that the story of Abraham and his two sons is all “an allegory.” and that “Agar is Mount Sinai” is added to this, then little blame, indeed, can be attached to either Christian or Heathen who declines to accept the Bible in any other light than that of a very ingenious allegory.
Rabbi Simeon Ben-“Jochai,” the compiler of the Zohar, never imparted the most important points of his doctrine otherwise than orally, and to a very limited number of disciples. Therefore, without the final initiation into the Mercavah, the study of the Kabalah will be ever incomplete, and the Mercavah can be taught only “in darkness, in a deserted place, and after many and terrific trials.” Since the death of that great Jewish Initiate this hidden doctrine has remained, for the outside world, an inviolate secret.
Among the venerable sect of the Tanaim, or rather the Tananim, the wise men, there were those who taught the secrets practically and initiated some disciples into the grand and final Mystery. But the Mishna Hagiga, 2nd Section, say that the table of contents of the Mercaba “must only be delivered to wise old ones.” The Gemara is still more dogmatic. “The more important secrets of the Mysteries (Page 48)were not even revealed to all priests. Alone the initiates had them divulged.” And so we find the same great secresy prevalent in every ancient religion. [ Isis Unveiled, ii. 350.]
What says the Kabalah itself? Its great Rabbis actually threaten him who accepts their sayings verbatim. We read in the Zohar:
Woe to the man who sees in the Thorah, i.e., Law, only simple recitals and ordinary words! Because if in truth it only contained these, we would even today be able to compose a Thorah much more worthy of admiration. For if we find only the simple words, we would only have to address ourselves to the legislators of the earth.[ The materialistic “law-givers,” the critics and Sadducees who have tried to tear to shreds the doctrines and teachings of the great Asiatic Masters past and present - no scholars in the modern sense of the word - would do well to ponder over these words. No doubt that doctrines and secret teachings had they been invented and written in Oxford and Cambridge would be more brilliant outwardly. Would they equally answer to universal truths and facts, is the next question however.] to those in whom we most frequently meet with the most grandeur. It would be sufficient to imitate them, and make a Thorah after their words and example. But it is not so; each word of the Thorah contains an elevated meaning and a sublime mystery. . . . The recitals of the Thorah are the vestments of the Thorah. Woe to him who takes this garment for the Thorah itself . . . . The simple notice only of the garments or recitals of the Thorah, they know of no other thing, they see not that which is concealed under the vestment. The more instructed men do not pay attention to the vestment, but to the body which it envelops.[ iii. fol. 1526, quoted in Myer’s Qabbalah, p.102.]
Ammonius Saccas taught that the Secret Doctrine of the Wisdom-Religion was found complete in the Books of Thoth (Hermes), from which both Pythagoras and Plato derived their knowledge and much of their Philosophy; and these Books were declared by him to be “identical with the teachings of the Sages of the remote East.” Professor A. Wilder remarks:
As the name Thoth means a college or assembly, it is not altogether improbable that the books were so named as being the collected oracles and doctrines of the sacerdotal fraternity of Memphis. Rabbi Wise has suggested the same hypothesis in relation to the divine utterances recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures. [ New-Platonism and Alchemy.p.6 ]
This is very probable. Only the “divine utterances” have never been, so far, understood by the profane. Philo Judaeus, a non-initiate, attempted to give their secret meaning and - failed.
But Books of Thoth or Bible, Vedas or Kabalah, all enjoin the same secresy as to certain mysteries of nature symbolised in them. “Woe be to him who divulges unlawfully the words whispered into the ear of Manushi by the First Initiator.”
The “Dark Sayings” of the “Testaments.” (Page 49) Who that “Initiator” was is made plain in the Book of Enoch:
From them [the angels] I heard all things, and understood what I saw, that which will not take place in this generation [Race], but in a generation which is to succeed at a distant period [ the 6th and 7th Races] on account of the elect [the Initiates]. [ i. 2.]
Again, it is said with regard to the judgment of those who, when they have learned “every secret of the angels,” reveal them, that:
They have discovered secrets, and they are those who have been judged; but not thou, my son [Noah] . . . thou art pure and good and free from the reproach of discovering [revealing] secrets. [ IXIV.10.]
But there are those in our century, who, having “discovered secrets” unaided and owing to their own learning and acuteness only, and who being nevertheless, honest and straightforward men, undismayed by threats or warning since they have never pledged themselves to secresy, feel quite startled at such revelations. One of these is the learned author and discoverer of one “Key to the Hebrew-Egyptian Mystery.” As he says, there are “some strange features connected to the promulgation and condition” of the Bible.
Those who compiled this book were men as we are. They knew, saw, handled and realized, through the key measure, [ The key is shown to be “in the source of measures originating the British inch and the ancient cubit” as the author tries to prove.] the law of the living, ever active God.[ The word as a plural might have better solved the mystery. God is ever-present; if he were ever-active he could no longer be an infinite God - nor ever-present in his limitation.] They needed no faith that He was, that He worked, planned and accomplished, as a mighty mechanic and architect.[ The author is evidently a Mason of the way of thinking of General Pike. So long as the American and English Masons will reject the “Creative Principle” of the “Grand Orient” of France they will remain in the dark.] What was it, then, that reserved to them alone this knowledge, while first as men of God, and second as Apostles of Jesus the Christ, they doled out a blinding ritual service, and an empty teaching of faith and no substance as proof, properly coming through the exercise of just those senses which the Deity has given all men as the essential means of obtaining any right understanding? Mystery and parable, and dark saying, and cloaking of the true meanings are the burden of the Testaments, Old and New. Take it that the narratives of the Bible were purposed inventions to deceive the ignorant masses, even while enforcing a most perfect code of moral obligations: How is it possible to justify so great frauds, as part of the Divine economy, when to that economy, the attribute of simple and perfect truthfulness must, in the nature of things, be (Page 50) ascribed? What has, or what by possibility ought mystery to have, with the promulgation of the truths of God? [ Source of Measures, pp.308, 309 ]
Nothing whatever most certainly, if those mysteries had been given from the first. And so it was with regard to the first, semi-divine, pure and spiritual Races of Humanity. They had the “truths of God,” and lived up to them, and their ideals. They preserved them, so long as there was hardly any evil, and hence scarcely a possible abuse of that knowledge and those truths. But evolution and the gradual fall into materiality is also one of the “truths” and also one of the laws of “God.” And as mankind progressed, and became with every generation more of the earth, earthly, the individuality of each temporary Ego began to assert itself. It is personal selfishness that develops and urges man on to abuse of his knowledge and power. And selfishness is a human building, whose windows and doors are ever wide open for every kind of iniquity to enter into man’s soul. Few were the men during the early adolescence of mankind, and fewer still are they now, who feel disposed to put into practice Pope’s forcible declaration that he would tear out his own heart, if it had no better disposition than to love only himself, and laugh at all his neighbours. Hence the necessity of gradually taking away from man the divine knowledge and power, which became with every new human cycle more dangerous as a double-edged weapon, whose evil side was ever threatening one’s neighbour, and whose power for good was lavished freely only upon self. Those few “elect” whose inner natures had remained unaffected by their outward physical growth, thus became in time the sole guardians of the mysteries revealed, passing the knowledge to those most fit to receive it, and keeping it inaccessible to others. Reject this explanation from the Secret Teachings, and the very name of Religion will become synonymous with deception and fraud.
Yet the masses could not be allowed to remain without some sort of moral restraint. Man is ever craving for a “beyond” and cannot live without an idea of some kind, as a beacon and a consolation. At the same time, no average man, even in our age of universal education, could be entrusted with truths too metaphysical, too subtle for his mind to comprehend, without the danger of an imminent reaction setting in, and faith in Gods and Saints making room for an unscientific blank Atheism. No real philanthropist, hence no Occultist, would dream for a moment of a mankind without one title of Religion.
The Greatest Crime Ever Perpetrated - (Page 51) Even the modern day Religion in Europe, confined to Sundays, is better than none. But if, as Bunyan put it, “Religion is the best armour that a man can have,” it certainly is the “worst cloak” ; and it is that “cloak” and false pretence which the Occultists and the Theosophists fight against. The true ideal Deity, the one living God in Nature, can never suffer in man’s worship if that outward cloak woven by man’s fancy, and thrown upon the Deity by the crafty hand of the priest greedy of power and domination, is drawn aside. The hour has struck with the commencement of this century to dethrone the “highest God” of every nation in favour of One Universal Deity - The God of Immutable Law, not charity; the God of Just Retribution, not mercy, which is merely an incentive to evil-doing and to a repetition of it. The greatest crime that was ever perpetrated upon mankind was committed on that day when the first priest invented the first prayer with a selfish object in view. A God who may be propitiated by iniquitous prayers to “bless the arms” of the worshipper, and send defeat and death to thousands of his enemies - his brethren; a Deity that can be supposed not to turn a deaf ear to chants of laudation mixed with entreaties for a “fair propitious wind” for self, and as naturally disastrous to the selves of other navigators who come from an opposite direction - it is this idea of God that has fostered selfishness in man, and deprived him of his self-reliance. Prayer is an ennobling action when it is an intense feeling, an ardent desire rushing forth from our very heart, for the good of other people, and when entirely detached from any selfish personal object; the craving for a beyond is natural and holy in man, but on the condition of sharing that bliss with others. One can understand and well appreciate the words of the “heathen” Socrates, who declared in his profound though untaught wisdom, that:
Our prayers should be for blessings on all, in general, for the Gods know best what is good for us.
But official prayer - in favour of a public calamity, or for the benefit of one individual irrespective of losses to thousands - is the most ignoble of crimes, besides being an impertinent conceit and a superstition. This is the direct inheritance by spoliation from the Jehovites - the Jews of the Wilderness and of the Golden Calf.
It is “Jehovah,” as will be presently shown, that suggested the necessity of veiling and screening this substitute for the unpronounceable name, and that led to all this “mystery parables, dark sayings (Page 52) and cloaking.” Moses had, at any rate, initiated his seventy Elders into the hidden truths, and thus the writers of the Old Testament stand to a degree justified. Those of the New Testament have failed to do even so much, or so little. They have disfigured the grand central figure of Christ by their dogmas, and have led people ever since into millions of errors and the darkest crimes, in His holy name.
It is evident that with the exception of Paul and Clement of Alexandria who had been both initiated into the Mysteries, none of the Fathers knew much of the truth themselves. They were mostly uneducated, ignorant people; and if such as Augustine and Lactantius, or again the Venerable Bede and others, were so painfully ignorant until the name of Galileo [ In his Pneumatologie, in Vol. iv., pp. 105-112, the Marquis de Mirville claims the knowledge of the heliocentric system - earlier than Galileo - for Pope Urban VIII. The author goes further. He tries to show that famous Pope, not as the persecutor but as one persecuted by Galileo, and calumniated by the Florentine Astronomer into the bargain. If so, so much the worse for the Latin Church, since her Popes, knowing of it, still preserved silence upon this most important fact, either to screen Joshua or their own infallibility. One can understand well that the Bible having been so exalted over all the other systems, and its alleged monotheism depending upon the silence preserved, nothing remained of course but to keep quiet over its symbolism, thus allowing all its blunders to be fathered on its God.] of the most vital truths taught in the Pagan temples - of the rotundity of the earth, for example, leaving the heliocentric system out of question - how great must have been the ignorance of the rest! Learning the accusations of dealing with the Devil lavished on the Pagan Philosophers.
But truth must out. The Occultists, referred to as “the followers of the accursed Cain,” by such writers as De Mirville, are now in a position to reverse the tables. That which was hitherto known only to the ancient and modern Kabalists in Europe and Asia, is now published and shown as being mathematically true. The author of the Key to the Hebrew-Egyptian Mystery or the Source of Measures has now proved to general satisfaction, it is to be hoped, that the two great God-names, Jehovah and Elohim, stood, in one meaning of their numerical values, for a diameter and a circumference value, respectively; in other words, that they are numerical indices of geometrical relations; and finally that Jehovah is Cain and vice versa.
This view, says the author,
Helps also to take the horrid blemish off from the name of Cain, as a put-up-job to destroy his character; for even without these showings, by the very text, he [Cain] was Jehovah. So the theological schools had better be alive to making the amend honorable, if such a thing is possible, to the good name and fame of the God they worship
Asiatic Religions Proclaim Their Esoterism Openly - (Page 53) [ Op.cit., App. vii. p.296. The writer feels happy to find this fact now mathematically demonstrated. When it was stated in Isis Unveiled that Jehovah and Saturn were one and the same with Adam Kadmon, Cain, Adam and Eve, Able, Seth. etc., and that all were convertible symbols in the Secret Doctrine (see Vol ii. pp. 446, 448, 464 et seq.): that they answered, in short, to secret numerals and stood for more than one meaning in the Bible as in other doctrines - the author’s statements remained unnoticed. Isis had failed to appear under a scientific form, and by giving it too much, in fact, gave very little to satisfy the enquirer. But now, if mathematics and geometry, besides the evidence of the Bible and Kabalah are good for anything, the public must find itself satisfied. No fuller, more scientifically given proof can be found to show that Cain is the transformation of an Elohim (the Sephira Binah) into Jah-Veh (or God-Eve) androgyne, and that Seth is the Jehovah male, than in the combined discoveries of Seyffarth, Knight, etc., and finally in Mr.Ralston Skinner’s most erudite work. The further relations of these personifications of the first human races, in their gradual development, will be given later on in the text.]
This is not the first warning received by the “theological schools.” which, however, no doubt knew it from the beginning, as did Clemens of Alexandria and others. But if it be so they will profit still less by it, as the admission would involve more for them than the mere sacredness and dignity of the established faith.
But, it may also be asked, why is it that the Asiatic religions, which have nothing of this sort to conceal and which proclaim quite openly the Esoterism of their doctrines, follow the same course? It is simply this: While the present, and no doubt enforced silence of the Church on this subject relates merely to the external or theoretical form of the Bible - the unveiling of the secrets of which would have involved no practical harm, had they been explained from the first - it is an entirely different question with Eastern Esoterism and Symbology. The grand central figure of the Gospels would have remained as unaffected by the symbolism of the Old Testament being revealed, as would that of the Founder of Buddhism had the Brahmanical writings of the Puranas, that preceded his birth, all been shown to be allegorical. Jesus of Nazareth, moreover, would have gained more than he would have lost had he been presented as a simple mortal left to be judged on his own precepts and merits, instead of being fathered on Christendom as a God whose many utterances and acts are now so open to criticism. On the other hand the symbols and allegorical sayings that veil the grand truths of Nature in the Vedas, the Brahmanas, the Upanishads and especially in the Lamaist Chagpa Thogmed and other works, are quite of a different nature, and far more complicated in their secret meaning. While the Biblical glyphs have nearly all a triune foundation, those of the Eastern books are worked on the septenary principle. They are (Page 54) as closely related to the mysteries of Physics and Physiology, as to Psychism and the transcendental nature of cosmic elements and Theogony; unriddled they would prove more than injurious to the uninitiated; delivered into the hands of the present generations in their actual state of physical and intellectual development, in the absence of spirituality and even of practical morality, they would become absolutely disastrous.
Nevertheless the secret teachings of the sanctuaries have not remained without witness; they have been made immortal in various ways. They have burst upon the world in hundreds of volumes full of the quaint, head-breaking phraseology of the Alchemist; they have flashed like irrepressible cataracts of Occult mystic lore from the pens of poets and bards. Genius alone had certain privileges in those dark ages when no dreamer could offer the world even a fiction without suiting his heaven and his earth to biblical text. To genius alone it was permitted in those centuries of mental blindness, when the fear of the “Holy Office” threw a thick veil over every cosmic and psychic truth, to reveal unimpeded some of the grandest truths of Initiation. Whence did Ariosto, in his Orlando Furioso, obtain his conception of that valley of the Moon, where after our death we can find the ideas and images of all that exists on earth? How came Dante to imagine the many descriptions given in his Inferno - a new Johannine Apolcalypse, a true Occult Revelation in verse - his visit and communion with the Souls of the Seven Spheres? In poetry and satire every Occult truth has been welcomed - none has been recognised as serious. The Comte de Gabalis is better known and appreciated than Porphyry and Iamblichus. Plato’s mysterious Atlantis is proclaimed a fiction, while Noah’s Deluge is to this day on the brain of certain Archaeologists, who scoff at the archetypal world of Marcel Palingenius’ Zodiac, and would resent as a personal injury being asked to discuss the four worlds of Mercury Trismegistus - the Archetypal, the Spiritual, the Astral and the Elementary, with three others behind the opened scene. Evidently civilised society is still but half prepared for the revelation. Hence, the Initiates will never give out the whole secret, until the bulk of mankind has changed its actual nature and is better prepared for truth. Clemens Alexandrinus was positively right in saying, “It is requisite to hide in a mystery the wisdom spoken” - which the “Sons of God” teach.
That Wisdom, as will be seen, relates to all the primeval truths delivered to the first Races, the “Mind-born,” by the “Builders” of the Universe themselves.
The Wisdom-Religion - (Page 55) There was in every ancient country having claims to civilisation, an Esoteric Doctrine, a system which was designated WISDOM [ The writings extant in olden times often personified Wisdom as an emanation and associate of the Creator. Thus we have the Hindu Buddha, the Babylonian Nebo, the Thoth of Memphis, the Hermes of Greece: also the female divinities, Neitha, Metis, Athena, and the Gnostic potency Achamoth or Sophia. The Samaritan Pentateuch denominated the Book of Genesis, Akamouth, or Wisdom, and two remnants of old treatises, the Wisdom of Solomon and the Wisdom of Jesus, relate to the same matters. The Book of Mashalim - the Discourses of Proverbs of Solomon - thus personifies Wisdom as the auxiliary of the Creator. In the Secret Wisdom of the East that auxiliary is found collectively in the first emanations of Primeval Light, the Seven Dhyani-Chohans, who have been shown to be identical with the “Seven Spirits of the Presence” of the Roman Catholics.] and those who were devoted to its prosecution were first denominated sages, or wise men. . . Pythagoras termed this system ηγνωσις των δντων, the Gnosis or Knowledge of things that are. Under the noble designation of WISDOM, the ancient teachers, the sages of India, the magians of Persia and Babylon, the seers and prophets of Israel, the hierophants of Egypt and Arabia, and the philosophers of Greece and the West, included all knowledge which they considered as essentially divine; classifying a part as esoteric and the remainder as exterior. The Rabbis called the exterior and secular series the Mercavah, as being the body or vehicle which contained the higher knowledge. [ New Platonism and Alchemy, p.6.]
Later on, we shall speak of the law of silence imposed on eastern chelâs.
Some Reasons for Secresy
(Page 56) The fact that the Occult Sciences have been withheld from the world at large, and denied by the Initiates to Humanity, has often been made matter of complaint. It has been alleged that the Guardians of the Secret Lore were selfish in withholding the “treasures” of Archaic Wisdom; that it was positively criminal to keep back such knowledge - “if any” - from the men of Science, etc.
Yet there must have been some very good reasons for it, since from the very dawn of History such has been the policy of every Hierophant and “Master.” Pythagoras, the first Adept and real Scientist in pre-Christian Europe, is accused of having taught in public the immobility of the earth, and the rotary motion of the stars around it, while he was declaring to his privileged Adepts his belief in the motion of the Earth as a planet, and in the heliocentric system. The reasons for such secresy, however, are many and were never made a mystery of. The chief cause as given in Isis Unveiled. It may now be repeated.
From the very day when the first mystic, taught by the first Instructor of the “divine Dynasties” of the early races, was taught the means of communication between this world and the worlds of the invisible host, between the sphere of matter and that of pure spirit, he concluded that to abandon this mysterious science to the desecration, willing or unwilling, of the profane rabble - was to lose it. An abuse of it might lead mankind to speedy destruction; it was like surrounding a group of children with explosive substances, and furnishing them with matches. The first divine Instructor initiated but a select few, and these kept silence with the multitudes. They recognised their “God” and each Adept felt the great “SELF” within himself. The Atman, the Self, the mighty Lord and Protector, once that man knew him as the “I am,” the “Ego Sum,” the “Asmi,” showed his full power to him who could recognise the “still small voice.” From the days of the primitive man described by the first Vedic poet, down to our modern age, there has not been a philosopher worthy of that name, who did not carry in the silent sanctuary of his heart the grand and mysterious truth. If initiated, he learnt it as a sacred science; if otherwise then, like Socrates, repeating to himself as well as his fellow-men, the noble injunction, “O man, know thyself,” he succeeded in recognising his God within himself.
The Key of Practical Theurgy -
(Page 57) “Ye are Gods,” the king-psalmist tells us, and we find Jesus reminding the scribes that this expression was addressed to other mortal men , claiming for themselves the same privilege without any blasphemy. And as a faithful echo, Paul, while asserting that we are all “the temple of the living God,” cautiously remarked elsewhere that after all these things are only for the “wise,” and it is “unlawful” to speak of them.[ ii. 317, 318. Many verbal alterations from the original text of Isis Unveiled were made by H.P.B. in her quotations therefrom, and these are followed throughout.]
Some of the reasons for this secresy may be given.
The fundamental law and master-key of practical Theurgy, in its chief applications to the serious study of cosmic and sidereal, of psychic and spiritual, mysteries was, and still is, that which was called by the Greek Neoplatonist “Theophania.” In its generally-accepted meaning this is “communication between the Gods (or God) and those initiated mortals who are spiritually fit to enjoy such an intercourse.” Esoterically, however, it signifies more than this. For it is not only the presence of a God, but an actual - howbeit temporary - incarnation, the blending, so to say, of the personal Deity, the Higher Self, with man - its representative or agent on earth. As a general law, the Highest God, the Over-soul of the human being (Atma-Buddhi), only overshadows the individual during his life, for purposes of instruction and revelation; or as Roman Catholics - who erroneously call that Over-soul the “Guardian Angel” - would say, “It stands outside and watches.” But in the case of the theophanic mystery, it incarnates itself in the Theurgist for purposes of revelation. When the incarnation is temporary, during those mysterious trances or “ecstasy,” which Plotinus defined as
The liberation of the mind from its finite consciousness, becoming one and identified with the Infinite,
this sublime condition is very short. The human soul, being the offspring or emanation of its God, the “Father and the Son” become one, “the divine fountain flowing like a stream into its human bed.” [ Proclus claims to have experienced this sublime ecstasy six times during his mystic life: Porphyry asserts that Appollonius of Tyana was thus united four times to his deity - a statement which we believe to be a mistake, since Apollonius was a Nirmanakaya (divine incarnation - not Avatara) - and he (Porphyry) only once, when over sixty years of age. Theophany (or the actual appearance of a God to man), Theopathy (or “assimilation of divine nature”), and Theopneusty (inspiration, or rather the mysterious power to hear orally the teachings of a God) have never been rightly understood.] In exceptional cases, however, the mystery becomes complete; the (Page 58) Word is made Flesh in real fact, the individual becoming divine in the full sense of the term, since his personal God has made of him his permanent life-long tabernacle - “the temple of God,” as Paul says.
Now that which is meant here by the personal God of Man is, of course, not his seventh Principle alone, as per se and in essence that is merely a bean of the infinite Ocean of Light. In conjunction with our Divine Soul, the Buddhi, it cannot be called a Duad, as it otherwise might, since, though formed from Atma and Buddhi (the two higher Principles), the former is no entity but an emanation from the Absolute, and indivisible in reality from it. The personal God is not the Monad, but indeed the prototype of the latter, what for want of a better term we call the manifested Karanatma [ Karana Sharira is the “causal” body and is sometimes said to be the “personal God.” And so it is, in one sense.] (Causal Soul), one of the “seven” and chief reservoirs of the human Monads or Egos. The latter are gradually formed and strengthened during their incarnation-cycle by constant additions of individuality from the personalities in which incarnates that androgynous, half-spiritual, half-terrestrial principle, partaking of both heaven and earth, called by the Vedantins Jiva and Vijnanamaya Kosha, and by the Occultists the Manas (mind); that, in short, which uniting itself partially with the Monad, incarnates in each new birth. In perfect unity with its (seventh) Principle, the Spirit unalloyed, it is the divine Higher Self, as every student of Theosophy knows. After every new incarnation Buddhi-Manas culls, so to say the aroma of the flower called personality, the purely earthly residue of which its dregs - is left to fade out as a shadow. This is the most difficult - because so transcendentally metaphysical - portion of the doctrine.
As is repeated many a time in this and other works, it is not the Philosophers, Sages, and Adepts of antiquity who can ever be charged with idolatry. It is they in fact, who, recognising divine unity, were the only ones, owing to their initiation into the mysteries of Esotericism, to understand correctly the υπσνσια(hyponea), or under-meaning of the anthropomorphism of the so-called Angels, Gods, and Spiritual Beings of every kind. Each, worshipping the one Divine Essence that pervades the whole world of Nature, reverenced, but never worshipped or idolised, any of these “Gods,” whether high or low - not even his own personal Deity, of which he was a Ray, and to whom he appealed.[ This would be in one sense Self-worship.]
The Ladder of Being -
(Page 59) The holy Triad emanates from the One, and is the Tetraktys; the gods, daimons, and souls are an emanation of the Triad. Heroes and men repeat the hierarchy in themselves.
Thus said Metrodorus of Chios, the Pythagorean, the latter part of the sentence meaning that man has within himself the seven pale reflections of the seven divine Hierarchies; his Higher Self is, therefore, in itself but the refracted beam of the direct Ray. He who regards the latter as an Entity, in the usual sense of the term, is one of the “infidels and atheists,” spoken of by Epicurus, for he fastens on that God “the opinions of the multitude” - an anthropomorphism of the grossest kind. [“The Gods exist,” said Epicurus, “but they are not what the hoi polloi (the multitude) suppose them to be. He is not an infidel or atheist who denies the existence of Gods whom the multitude worship, but he is such who fastens on the Gods the opinions of the multitude.” ] The Adept and the Occultist know that “what are styled the Gods are only the first principles” (Aristotle). None the less they are intelligent, conscious, and living “Principles,” the Primary Seven Lights manifested from Light unmanifested - which to us is Darkness. They are the Seven - exoterically four - Kumaras or “Mind-Born Sons” of Brahma. And it is they again, the Dhyan Chohans, who are the prototypes in the aeonic eternity of lower Gods and hierarchies of divine Beings, at the lowest end of which ladder of being are we - men.
Thus perchance Polytheism, when philosophically understood, may be a degree higher than even the Monotheism of the Protestant, say, who limits and conditions the Deity in whom he persists in seeing the Infinite, but whose supposed actions make of that “Absolute and Infinite” the most absurd paradox in Philosophy. From this standpoint Roman Catholicism itself is immeasurably higher and more logical than Protestantism, though the Roman Church has been pleased to adopt the exotericism of the heathen “multitude” and to reject the Philosophy of pure Esotericism.
Thus every mortal has his immortal counterpart, or rather his Archetype, in heaven. This means that the former is indissolubly united to the latter, in each of his incarnations, and for the duration of the cycle of births; only it is by the spiritual and intellectual Principle in him, entirely distinct from the lower self, never through the earthly personality. Some of these are even liable to break the union altogether, in case of absence in the moral individual of binding, viz.,of spiritual ties. Truly, as Paracelsus puts it in his quaint, tortured (Page 60) phraseology, man with his three (compound) Spirits is suspended like a foetus by all three to the matrix of the Macrocosm; the thread which holds him united being the “Thread-Soul,” Sutratma, and Taijasa (the “Shining”) of the Vedantins. And it is through this spiritual and intellectual Principle in man, though Taijasa - the Shining, “because it has the luminous internal organ as its associate” - that man is thus united to his heavenly prototype, never through his lower inner self or Astral Body, for which there remains in most cases nothing but to fade out.
Occultism, or Theurgy, teaches the means of producing such union. But it is the actions of man - his personal merit alone - that can produce it on earth, or determine its duration. This lasts from a few seconds - a flash - to several hours, during which time the Theurgist or Theophanist is that overshadowing “God” himself; hence he becomes endowed for the time being with relative omniscience and omnipotence. With such perfect (divine) Adepts as Buddha [ Esoteric, as exoteric, Buddhism rejects the theory that Gautama was an incarnation or Avatara of Vishnu, but teaches the doctrine as herein explained. Every man has in him the materials, if not the conditions, for theophanic intercourse and Theopneusty, the inspiring “God” being, however, in every case, his own Higher Self, or divine prototype.] and others such a hypostatical state of avataric condition may last during the whole life; whereas in the case of full Initiates, who have not yet reached the perfect state of Jivanmukta, [ One entirely and absolutely purified, and having nothing in common with earth except his body.] Theopneusty, when in full sway, results for the high Adept in a full recollection of everything seen, heard, or sensed.
Taijasa has fruition of the supersensible.[ Mandukyopanishad, 4.]
For one less perfect it will end only in a partial, indistinct remembrance; while the beginner has to face in the first period of his psychic experiences a mere confusion, followed by a rapid and finally complete oblivion of the mysteries seen during this super-hypnotic condition. The degree of recollection, when one returns to his waking state and physical senses, depends on his spiritual and psychic purification, the greatest enemy of spiritual memory being man’s physical brain the organ of his sensuous nature.
The above states are described for a clearer comprehension of terms used in this work. There are so many and such various conditions and states that even a Seer is liable to confound one with the other.
Three Ways Open to the Adept - (Page 61) To repeat: the Greek, rarely-used word, “Theophania,” meant more with the Neoplatonists than it does with the modern maker of dictionaries. The compound word, Theophania” (from “theos,” “God,” and “phainomai,” “to appear),” does not simply mean “a manifestation of God to man by actual appearance” - an absurdity, by the way - but the actual presence of a God in man, a divine incarnation. When Simon the Magician claimed to be “God the Father,” what he wanted to convey was just that which has been explained, namely, that he was a divine incarnation of his own Father, whether we see in the latter an Angel, a God, or a Spirit; therefore he was called “that power of God which is called great,” [ Acts, viii, 10 (Revised Version).] or that power which causes the Divine Self to enshrine itself in its lower self - man.
This is one of the several mysteries of being and incarnation. Another is that when an Adept reaches during his lifetime that state of holiness and purity that makes him “equal to the Angels,” then at death his apparitional or astral body becomes as solid and tangible as was the late body, and is transformed into the real man. [ See the explanations given on the subject in “The Elixir of Life,” by G.M. (From a Chela’s Diary), Five Years of Theosophy.] The old physical body, falling off like the cast-off serpent’s skin, the body of the “new” man remains either visible or, at the option of the Adept, disappears from view, surrounded as it is by the Akashic shell that screens it. In the latter case there are three ways open to the Adept:
(1) He may remain in the earth’s sphere (Vayu or Kama-loka), in that ethereal locality concealed from human sight save during flashes of clairvoyance. In this case his astral body, owing to its great purity and spirituality, having lost the conditions required for Akashic light (the nether or terrestrial ether) to absorb its semi-material particles, the Adept will have to remain in the company of disintegrating shells - doing no good or useful work. This, of course, cannot be.
(2) He can by a supreme effort of will merge entirely into, and get united with, his Monad. By doing so, however, we would (a) deprive his Higher Self of posthumous Samadhi - a bliss which is not real Nirvana - the astral, however pure, being too earthly for such state; and (b) he would thereby open himself to Karmic law; the action being, in fact, the outcome of personal selfishness - of reaping the fruits produced by and for oneself - alone.
(3) The Adept has the option of renouncing conscious Nirvana and (Page 62) rest, to work on earth for the good of mankind. This he can do in a two-fold way: either, as above said, by consolidating his astral body into physical appearance, he can reassume the self-same personality; or he can avail himself of an entirely new physical body, whether that of a newly-born infant or - as Shânkarâcharya is reported to have done with the body of a dead Rajah - by entering a deserted sheath,” and living in it as long as he chooses. This is what is called “continuous existence.” The Section entitled “The Mystery about Buddha” will throw additional light on this theory, to the profane incomprehensible, or to the generality simply absurd. Such is the doctrine taught, everyone having the choice of either fathoming it still deeper, or of leaving it unnoticed.
The above is simply a small portion of what might have been given in Isis Unveiled, had the time come then, as it has now. One cannot study and profit by Occult Science, unless one gives himself up to it - heart, soul, and body. Some of its truths are too awful, too dangerous, for the average mind. None can toy and play with such terrible weapons with impunity. Therefore it is, as St.Paul has it, “unlawful” to speak of them. Let us accept the reminder and talk only of that which is “lawful.”
The quotation on p. 56 relates, moreover, only to psychic or spiritual Magic. The practical teachings of Occult Science are entirely different, and few are the strong minds fitted for them. As to ecstasy, and such like kinds of self-illumination, this may be obtained by oneself and without any teacher or initiation, for ecstasy is reached by an inward command and control of Self over the physical Ego; as to obtaining mastery over the forces of Nature, this requires a long training, or the capacity of one born a “natural Magician.” Meanwhile, those who possess neither of the requisite qualifications are strongly advised to limit themselves to purely spiritual development. But even this is difficult, as the first necessary qualification is an unshakable belief in one’s own powers and the Deity within oneself; otherwise a man would simply develop into an irresponsible medium. Throughout the whole mystic literature of the ancient world we detect the same idea of spiritual Esoterism, that the personal God exists within, nowhere outside, the worshipper. That personal Deity is no vain breath, or a fiction, but an immortal Entity, the Initiator of the Initiates, now that the heavenly or Celestial Initiators of primitive humanity - the Shishta of the preceding cycles - are no more among us. Like an undercurrent, rapid and clear, it runs without mixing its crystalline purity with the muddy troubled waters of dogmatism, an enforced anthropomorphic Deity and religious intolerance.
Man is God - (Page 63) We find this idea in the tortured and barbarous phraseology of the Codex Nazaraeus, and in the superb Neoplatonic language of the Fourth Gospel of the later Religion, in the oldest Veda and in the Avesta, in the Abhidharma, in Kapila’s Sankhya, and the Bhagavad Gitâ. We cannot attain Adeptship and Nirvana, Bliss and the “Kingdom of Heaven,” unless we link ourselves indissolubly with our Rex Lux, the Lord of Splendour and of Light, our immortal God within us. “Aham eva param Brahman” - “I am verily the Supreme Brahman” - has ever been the one living truth in the heart and mind of the Adepts, and it is this which helps the Mystic to become one. One must first of all recognize one’s own immortal Principle, and then only can one conquer, or take the Kingdom of Heaven by violence. Only this has to be achieved by the higher - not the middle, nor the third - man, the last one being of dust. Nor can the second man, the “Son” - on this plane, as his “Father” is the Son on a still higher plane - do anything without the assistance of the first, the “Father.” But to succeed one has to identify oneself with one’s divine Parent.
The first man is of the earth, earthy; the second [inner, our higher] man is the Lord from heaven. . . . Behold, I show you a mystery.[ I.Cor., xv. 47.50.]
Thus says Paul, mentioning but the dual and trinitarian man for the better comprehension of the non-initiated. But this is not all, for the Dephic injunction has to be fulfilled: man must know himself in order to become a perfect Adept. How few can acquire the knowledge, however, not merely in its inner mystical, but even in its literal sense, for there are two meanings in this command of the Oracle. This is the doctrine of Buddha and the Bodhisattvas pure and simple.
Such is also the mystical sense of what was said to Paul to the Corinthians about their being the “temple of God,” for this meant Esoterically:
Ye are the temple of [the, or your] God, and the Spirit of [a, or your] God dwelleth in you. [ I Cor., iii. 16. Has the reader ever meditated upon the suggestive words, often pronounced by Jesus and his Apostles? “Be ye therefore perfect as your Father. . . is perfect” (Matt., v. 48), says the Great Master. The words are, “as perfect as your Father which is in heaven,” being interpreted as meaning God. Now the utter absurdity of any man becoming as perfect as the infinite, all-perfect, omniscient and omnipresent Deity, is too apparent. If you accept it in such a sense, Jesus is made to utter the greatest fallacy. What was Esoterically meant is, “Your Father who is above the material and astral man, the highest Principle (save the Monad) within man, his own personal God, or the God of his own personality, of whom he is the ‘prison’ and the ‘temple.’ “ ”If thou wilt be perfect (i.e., an Adept and Initiate) go and sell that thou hast” (Matt., xix.21). Every man who desired to become a neophyte, a chela, then, as now, had to take the vow of poverty. The “Perfect,” was the name given to the Initiates of every denomination. Plato calls them by that term. The Essenes had their “Perfect.” and Paul plainly states that they, the Initiates, can only speak before other Adepts. “We speak wisdom among them [only] that are perfect” (I. Cor.ii.6).]
(Page 64) This carries precisely the same meaning as the “I am verily Brahman” of the Vedantin. Nor is the latter assertion more blasphemous than the Pauline - if there were any blasphemy in either, which is denied. Only the Vedantin, who never refers to his body as being himself, or even a part of himself, or aught else but an illusory form for others to see him in, constructs his assertion more openly and sincerely than was done by Paul.
The Delphic command “Know thyself” was perfectly comprehensible to every nation of old. So it is now, save to the Christians, since with the exception of the Mussulmans, it is part and parcel of every Eastern religion, including the Kabalistically instructed Jews. To understand its full meaning, however, necessitates, first of all, belief in Reincarnation and all its mysteries; not as laid down in the doctrine of the French Reincarnationists of the Allan Kardec school, but as they are expounded and taught by Esoteric Philosophy. Man must in short, know who he was, before he arrives at knowing what he is. And how many are there among Europeans who are capable of developing within themselves an absolute belief in their past and future reincarnations, in general, even as a law, let alone mystic knowledge of one’s immediately precedent life? Early education, tradition and training of thought, everything is opposing itself during their whole lives to such a belief. Cultured people have been brought up in that most pernicious idea that the wide difference found between the units of one and the same mankind, or even race, is the result of chance; that the gulf between man and man in their respective social positions, birth, intellect, physical and mental capacities - every one of which qualifications has a direct influence on every human life - that all this is simply due to blind hazard, only the most pious among them finding equivocal consolation in the idea that it is “the will of God.” They have never analysed, never stopped to think of the depth of the opprobrium that is thrown upon their God, once the grand and most equitable law of the manifold re-births of man upon this earth is foolishly rejected. Men and women anxious to be regarded as Christians, often truly and sincerely trying to lead a Christ-like life, have never paused to reflect over the words of their own Bible.
Jesus Taught Reincarnation - (Page 65) “Art thou Elias?” the Jewish priests and Levites asked the Baptist. [ John, i. 21.] Their Saviour taught His disciples this grand truth of the Esoteric Philosophy, but verily, if His Apostles comprehended it, no one else seems to have realised its true meaning. No; not even Nicodemus, who, to the assertion: “Except a man be born again [John,iii, “Born” from above, viz., from his Monad or divine EGO, the seventh Principle which remains till the end of the Kalpa, the nucleus of, and at the same time the overshadowing Principle, as the Karanatma (Causal Soul) of the personality in every rebirth. In this sense, the sentence “born anew” means “descends from above,” the last two words having no reference to heaven or space, neither of which can be limited or located, since one is a state and the other infinite, hence having no cardinal points. (See New Testament, Revised Version loc.cit.) ] he cannot see the Kingdom of God,” answers: “How can a man be born when he is old?” and is forthwith reproved by the remark: “Art thou a Master in Israel and knowest not these things? - as no one had a right to call himself a “Master” and Teacher, without having been initiated into the mysteries (a) of a spiritual re-birth through water, fire and spirit, and (b) of the re-birth from flesh. [ This can have no reference to Christian Baptism, since there was none in the days of Nicodemus and he could not therefore know anything of it, even though a “Master.”] Then again what can be a clearer expression as to the doctrine of manifold re-births than the answer given by Jesus to the Sadducees, “who deny that there is any resurrection,” i.e., any re-birth, since the dogma of the resurrection in the flesh is now regarded as an absurdity even by the intelligent clergy:
They who shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world [Nirvana] [ This word, translated in the New Testament “world” to suit the official interpretation, means rather an “age” (as shown in the Revised Version) or one of the periods during the Manvantara, a Kalpa, or Aeon. Esoterically the sentence would read: “He who shall reach, through a series of births and Karmic law, the state in which Humanity shall find itself after the Seventh Round and the Seventh Race, when comes Nirvana, Moksha, and when man becomes ‘equal unto the Angels’ of Dhyan Chohans, is a ‘son of the resurrection’ and ‘can die no more’: then there will be no marriage, as there will be no difference of sexes” - a result of our present materiality and animalism.] . . . . neither marry . . . Neither can they die any more,
which shows that they had already died, and more than once. And again:
Now that the dead are raised even Moses shewed . . . He calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, for he is not a God of the dead but of the living. [ Luke,xx. 27-38.]
The sentence “now that the dead are raised” evidently applied to the then actual re-births of the Jacobs and the Isaacs, and not to their (Page 66) future resurrection; for in such case they would have been still dead in the interim, and could not be referred to as “the living.”
But in the most suggestive of Christ’s parables and “dark sayings” is found in the explanation given by him to his Apostles about the blind man:
Master, who did sin, this man or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this [blind, physical] man sinned nor his parents; but that the works of [his] God should be made manifest in him. [ John, ix. 2. 3.]
Man is the “tabernacle,” the “building” only, of his God; and of course it is not the temple but its inmate - the vehicle of “God” [The conscious Ego, of Fifth Principle Manas, the vehicle of the divine Monad or “God”.] that had sinned in a previous incarnation, and had thus brought the Karma of cecity upon the new building. Thus Jesus spoke truly; but to this day his followers have refused to understand the words of wisdom spoken. The Saviour is shown by his followers as though he were paving, by his words and explanation, the way to a preconceived programme that had to lead to an intended miracle. Verily the Grand Martyr has remained thenceforward, and for eighteen centuries, the Victim crucified daily far more cruelly by his clerical disciples and lay followers than he ever could have been by his allegorical enemies. For such is the true sense of the words “that the works of God should be made manifest in him,” in the light of theological interpretation, and a very undignified one it is, if the Esoteric explanation is rejected.
Doubtless the above will be regarded as fresh blasphemy. Nevertheless there are a number of Christians whom we know - whose hearts go out as strongly to their ideal of Jesus, as their souls are repelled from the theological picture of the official Saviour - who will reflect over our explanation and find in it no offence, but perchance a relief.
The Dangers of Practical Magic
(Page 67) MAGIC is a dual power: nothing is easier than to turn it into Sorcery; an evil thought suffices for it. Therefore while theoretical Occultism is harmless, and may do good, practical Magic, or the fruits of the Tree of Life and Knowledge,[ Some Symbologists, relying on the correspondence of numbers and the symbols of certain things and personages, refer these “secrets” to the mystery of generation. But it is more than this. The glyph of the “Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil” has no doubt a phallic and sexual element in it, as has the “Woman and the Serpent”; but it has also a psychical and spiritual significance. Symbols are meant to yield more than one meaning.] or otherwise the “Science of Good and Evil,” is fraught with dangers and perils. For the study of theoretical Occultism there are, no doubt a number of works that may be read with profit, besides such books as the Finer Forces of Nature, etc., the Zohar, Sepher Jetzirah, The Book of Enoch, Franck’s Kabalah, and many Hermetic treatises. These are scarce in European languages, but works in Latin by the mediaeval Philosophers, generally known as Alchemists and Rosicrucians, are plentiful. But even the perusal of these may prove dangerous for the unguided student. If approached without the right key to them, and if the student is unfit, owing to mental incapacity, for Magic, and is thus unable to discern the Right from the Left Path, let him take our advice and leave this study alone; he will only bring on himself and on his family unexpected woes and sorrows, never suspecting whence they come, nor what are the powers awakened by his mind being bent on them. Works for advanced students are many, but these can be placed at the disposal of only sworn or “pledged” chelas (disciples), those who have pronounced the ever-binding oath, and who are, therefore, helped and protected. For all other purposes, well-intentioned as such works may (Page 68) be, they can only mislead the unwary and guide them imperceptibly to Black Magic or Sorcery - if to nothing worse.
The mystic characters, alphabets and numerals found in the divisions and sub-divisions of the Great Kabalah, are perhaps, the most dangerous portions in it, and especially the numerals. We say dangerous, because they are the most prompt to produce effects and results, and this with or without the experimenter’s will, even without his knowledge. Some students are apt to doubt this statement, simply because after manipulating these numerals they have failed to notice any dire physical manifestation or result. Such results would be found the least dangerous: it is the moral causes produced and the various events developed and brought to an unforeseen crisis, that would testify to the truth of what is now stated had the lay students only the power of discernment.
The point of departure of that special branch of the Occult teaching known as the “Science of Correspondences,” numerical or literal or alphabetical, has for its epigraph with the Jewish and Christian Kabalists, the two mis-interpreted verses which say that God ordered all things in number, measure and weight; [ Wisdom, xi.21. Douay version ]
He created her in the Holy Ghost, and saw her, and numbered her, and measured her. [ Ecclesiasticus, i. 9. Douay version.]
But the Eastern Occultists have another epigraph: “Absolute Unity, x, within number and plurality.” Both the Western and the Eastern students of the Hidden Wisdom hold to this axiomatic truth. Only the latter are perhaps more sincere in their confessions. Instead of putting a mask on their Science, they show her face openly, even if they do veil carefully her heart and soul before the inappreciative public and the profane, who are ever ready to abuse the most sacred truths for their own selfish ends. But Unity is the real basis of the Occult Sciences - physical and metaphysical. This is shown even by Eliphas Levi, the learned Western Kabalist, inclined as he is to be rather jesuitical. He says:
Absolute Unity is the supreme and final reason of things. Therefore, that reason can be neither one person, nor three persons; it is Reason, and preeminently Reason (raison par excellence).[ Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie, i, 361.]
Names are Symbols - (Page 69) The meaning of this Unity in Plurality in “God” or Nature, can be solved only by the means of transcendental methods, by numerals, as by the correspondences between soul and the Soul. Names, in the Kabalah, as in the Bible such as Jehovah, Adam Kadmon, Eve, Cain, Abel, Enoch, are all of them more intimately connected, by geometrical and astronomical relations, with Physiology (or Phallicism) than with Theology or Religion. Little as people are as yet prepared to admit it, this will be shown to be a fact. If all those names are symbols for things hidden, as well as for those manifested, in the Bible as in the Vedas, their respective mysteries differ greatly. Plato’s motto “God geometrises” was accepted by both Aryans and Jews; but while the former applied their Science of Correspondences to veil the most spiritual and sublime truths of Nature, the latter used their acumen to conceal only one - to them the most divine - of the mysteries of Evolution, namely, that of birth and generation, and then they deified the organs of the latter.
Apart from this, every cosmogony, from the earliest to the latest, is based upon interlinked with, and most closely related to numerals and geometric figures. Questioned by an Initiate, these figures and numbers will yield numerical values based on the integral values of the Circle - “the secret habitat of the ever-invisible Deity” as the Alchemists have it - as they will yield every other Occult particular connected with such mysteries, whether anthropographical, anthroplogical, cosmic, or psychical. “In reuniting Ideas to Numbers, we can operate upon Ideas in the same way as upon Numbers, and arrive at the Mathematics of Truth,” writes an Occultist, who shows his great wisdom in desiring to remain unknown.
Any Kabalist well acquainted with the Pythagorean system of numerals and geometry can demonstrate that the metaphysical views of Plato were based upon the strictest mathematical principles. “True mathematics,” says the Magicon, “is something with which all higher sciences are connected; common mathematics is but a deceitful phantasmagoria, whose much praised infallibility only arises from this - that materials, conditions and references are made to foundation.”
The cosmological theory of numerals which Pythagoras learned in India, and from the Egyptian Hierophants, is alone able to reconcile the two units, matter and spirit, and cause each to demonstrate the other mathematically. The sacred numbers of the universe in their esoteric combination can alone solve the great problem, and explain the theory of radiation and the cycle of the emanations. The lower orders, before they develop into higher ones, must emanate from the (Page 70) higher spiritual ones, and when arrived at the turning-point, be reabsorbed into the infinite.[ Isis Unveiled, i, 6, 7.]
It is upon these true Mathematics that the knowledge of the Kosmos and of all mysteries rests, and to one acquainted with them, it is the easiest thing possible to prove that both Vaidic and Biblical structures are based upon “God-in-Nature” and “Nature-in-God,” as the radical law. Therefore, this law - as everything else immutable and fixed in eternity - could find a correct expression only in those purest transcendental Mathematics referred to by Plato, especially in Geometry as transcendentally applied. Revealed to men - we fear not and will not retract the expression - in this geometrical and symbolical garb, Truth has grown and developed into additional symbology, invented by man for the wants and better comprehension of the masses of mankind that came too late in their cyclic development and evolution to have shared in the primitive knowledge, and would never have grasped it otherwise. If later on, the clergy - crafty and ambitious of power in every age - anthropomorphised and degraded abstract ideals, as well as the real and divine Beings who do exist in Nature, and are the Guardians and Protectors of our manvantaric world and period, the fault and guilt rests with those would-be leaders, not with the masses.
But the day has come when the gross conceptions of our forefathers during the Middle Ages can no longer satisfy the thoughtful religionist. The mediaeval Alchemist and Mystic are now transformed into the sceptical Chemist and Physicist; and most of them are found to have turned away from truth, on account of the purely anthropomorphic ideas, the gross Materialism, of the forms in which it is presented to them. Therefore, future generations have either to be gradually initiated into the truths underlying Exoteric Religions, including their own or to be left to break the feet of clay of the last of the gilded idols. No educated man or woman would turn away from any of the now called “superstitions,” which they believe to be based on nursery tales and ignorance, if they could only see the basis of fact that underlies every “superstition.” But let them once learn for a certainty that there is hardly a claim in the Occult Sciences that is not founded on philosophical and scientific facts in Nature, and they will pursue the study of those Sciences with the same, if not with greater, ardour than that they have expended in shunning them. This cannot be achieved at once, for to benefit mankind such truths have to be revealed gradually and with great caution, the public mind not being prepared for them.
The Three Mothers - (Page 71) However much the Agnostics of our age may find themselves in the mental attitude demanded by Modern Science, people are always apt to cling to their old hobbies so long as the remembrance of them lasts. They are like the Emperor Julian - called the Apostate, because he loved truth too well to accept aught else - who, though in his last Theophany he beheld his beloved Gods as pale, worn-out, and hardly discernible shadows, nevertheless clung to them. Let, then, the world cling to its Gods, to whatever plane or realm they may belong. The true Occultist would be guilty of high treason to mankind, were he to break forever the old deities before he could replace them with the whole and unadulterated truth - and this he cannot do as yet. Nevertheless, the reader may be allowed to learn at least the alphabet of that truth. He may be shown, at any rate, what the Gods and Goddesses of the Pagans, denounced as demons by the Church, are not, if he cannot learn the whole and final truth as to what they are. Let him assure himself that the Hermetic “Tres Matres,” and the “Three Mothers” of the Sepher Jetzirah are one and the same thing; that they are no Demon-Goddesses, but Light, Heat, and Electricity, and then, perchance, the learned classes will spurn them no longer. After this, the Rosicrucian Illuminati may find followers even in the Royal Academies, which will be more prepared, perhaps, than they are now, to admit the grand truths of archaic Natural Philosophy, especially when their learned members shall have assured themselves that, in the dialect of Hermes, the “Three Mothers” stand as symbols for the whole of the forces or agencies which have a place assigned to them in the modern system of the “correlation of forces.” [ “Synesius mentions books of stone which he found in the temple of Memphis, on one of which was engraved the following sentence: ‘One nature delights in another, one nature overcomes another, one nature overrules another, and the whole of them are one’.” “The inherent restlessness of matter is embodied in the saying of Hermes: ‘Action is he life of Phta’: and Orpheus calls nature χολυμηχανος ματηρ , ‘the mother that makes many things,’ or the ingenious, the contiving, the inventive mother.” - Isis Unveiled. i. 257.] Even the polytheism of the “superstitious” Brâhman and idolater shows its raison d’être, since the three Shaktis of the three great Gods, Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, are identical with the “Three Mothers” of the monotheistic Jew.
The whole of the ancient religious and mystical literature is symbolical. The Books of Hermes, the Zohar, the Ya-Yakav, the Egyptian Book of the Dead, (Page 72) the Vedas, the Upanishads, and the Bible, are as full of symbolism as are the Nabathean revelations of the Chaldaic Qu-tâmy; it is a loss of time to ask which is the earliest; all are simply different versions of the one primeval Record of prehistoric knowledge and revelation.
The first four chapters of Genesis contain the synopsis of all the rest of the Pentateuch, being only the various versions of the same thing in different allegorical and symbolical applications. Having discovered that the Pyramid of Cheops with all its measurements is to be found contained in its minutest details in the structure of Solomon’s Temple; and having ascertained that the biblical names Shem, Ham and Japhet are determinative
of pyramid measures, in connection with the 600-year period of Noah and the 500-year period of Shem, Ham and Japhet: . . . the term “Sons of Elohim” and “Daughters” of H-Adam, [are] for one thing astronomical terms,[ Source of Measures. p.x.]
the author of the very curious work already mentioned - a book very little known in Europe, we regret to say - seems to see nothing in his discovery beyond the presence of Mathematics and Metrology in the Bible. He also arrives at most unexpected and extraordinary conclusions, such as are very little warranted by the facts discovered. His impression seems to be that because the Jewish biblical names are all astronomical, therefore the Scriptures of all the other nations can be “only this and nothing more.” But this is a great mistake of the erudite and wonderfully acute author of The Source of Measures, if he really thinks so. The “Key to the Hebrew-Egyptian Mystery” unlocks but a certain portion of the hieratic writings of these two nations, and leaves those of other peoples untouched. His idea is that the Kabalah “is only that sublime Science upon which Masonry is based”, in fact he regards Masonry as the substance of the Kabalah, and the latter as the “rational basis of the Hebrew text of Holy Writ.” About this we will not argue with the author. But why should all those who may have found in the Kabalah something beyond “the sublime Science” upon which Masonry is alleged to have been built, be held up to public contempt?
In its exclusiveness and one-sidedness such a conclusion is pregnant with future misconceptions and is absolutely wrong. In its uncharitable criticism it throws a slur upon the “Divine Science” itself.
The Bible and Word - Juggling - (Page 73) The Kabalah is indeed “of the essence of Masonry,” but it is dependent on Metrology only in one of its aspects, the less Esoteric, as even Plato made no secret that the Deity was ever geometrising. For the uninitiated, however learned and endowed with genius they may be, the Kabalah, which treats only of “the garment of God,” or the veil and cloak of truth,
is built from the ground upward with a practical application to present uses. [ Masonic Review, July 1886 ]
Or in other words represents an exact Science only on the terrestrial plane. To the initiated, the Kabalistic Lord descends from the primeval Race, generated spiritually from the “Mind-born Seven.” Having reached the Earth the Divine Mathematics - a synonym for Magic in his day, as we are told by Josephus - veiled her face. Hence the most important secret yet yielded by her in our modern day is the identity of the old Roman measures and the present British measures of the Hebrew-Egyptian cubit and the Masonic inch. [ See Source of Measures, pp. 47 - 50, et pass.]
The discovery is most wonderful, and has led to further and minor unveilings of various riddles in reference to Symbology and biblical names. It is thoroughly understood and proven, as shown by Nachanides, that in the days of Moses the initial sentence in Genesis was made to read B’rash ithbara Elohim, or “In the head-source [ or Mûlaprakriti - the Rootless Root] developed [or evolved] the Gods [Elohim], the heavens and the earth;” whereas it is now, owing to the Massora and theological cunning, transformed into B’rashith bara Elohim, or, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” - which word juggling alone has led to materialistic anthropomorphism and dualism.] How many more similar instances may not be found in the Bible, the last and latest of the Occult works of antiquity? There is no longer any doubt in the mind of the Occultist, that, notwithstanding its form and outward meaning, the Bible - as explained by the Zohar or Midrash, the Yetsirah (Book of Creation) and the Commentary on the Ten Sephiroth (by Azariel Ben Manachem of the X11th century) - is part and parcel of the Secret Doctrine of the Aryans, which explains in the same manner the Vedas and all other allegorical books. The Zohar, in teaching that the Impersonal One Cause manifests in the Universe through Its Emanations, the Sephiroth - that Universe being in its (Page 74) totality simply the veil woven from the Deity’s own substance - is undeniably the copy and faithful echo of the earliest Vedas. Taken by itself, without the additional help of the Vaidic and of Brahmanical literature in general , the Bible will never yield the universal secrets of Occult Nature. The cubits, inches, and measures of this physical plane will never solve the problems of the world on the spiritual plane - for Spirit can neither be weighed nor measured. The working out of these problems is reserved for the “mystics and the dreamers” who alone are capable of accomplishing it.
Moses was an initiated priest, versed in all the mysteries and the Occult knowledge of the Egyptian temples - hence thoroughly acquainted with primitive Wisdom. It is in the latter that the symbolical and astronomical meaning of that “Mystery of Mysteries,” the Great Pyramid, has to be sought. And having been so familiar with the geometrical secrets that lay concealed for long aeons in her strong bosom - the measurements and proportions of the Kosmos, our little Earth included - what wonder that he should have made use of his knowledge? The Esoterism of Egypt was that of the whole world at one time. During the long ages of the Third Race it had been the heirloom, in common, of the whole of mankind, received from their Instructors, the “Sons of Light,” the primeval Seven. There was a time also when the Wisdom-Religion was not symbolical for it became Esoteric only gradually, the change being necessitated by misuse and by the Sorcery of the Atlanteans. For it was the “misuse” only, and not the use, of the divine gift that led the men of the Fourth Race to Black Magic and Sorcery, and finally to become “forgetful of Wisdom”; while those of the Fifth Race, the inheritors of the Rishis of the Treta Yuga, used their powers to atrophise such gifts in mankind in general, and then, as the “Elect Root,” dispersed. Those who escaped the “Great Flood” preserved only its memory, and a belief founded on the knowledge of their direct fathers of one remove, that such a Science existed, and was now jealously guarded by the “Elect Root” exalted by Enoch. But there must again come a time when man shall once more become what he was during the second Yuga (age), when his probationary cycle shall be over and he shall gradually become what he was - semi-corporeal and pure. Does not Plato, the Initiate, tell us in the Phaedrus all that man once was, and that which he may yet again become:
Before man’s spirit sank into sensuality and became embodied through the loss of his wings, he lived among the Gods in the airy spiritual world where everything is true and pure. [ See Cary's translation, pp.322, 323.]
Moses and the Jews - (Page 75 ) Elsewhere he speaks of the time when men did not perpetuate themselves, but lived as pure spirits.
Let those men of Science who feel inclined to laugh at this, themselves unravel the mystery of the origin of the first man.
Unwilling that his chosen people - chosen by him - should remain as grossly idolatrous as the profane masses that surrounded them, Moses utilised his knowledge of cosmogonical mysteries of the Pyramid, to build upon it the Genesiacal Cosmogony in symbols and glyphs. This was more accessible to the minds of the hoi polloi than the abstruse truths taught to the educated in the sanctuaries. He invented nothing but the outward garb, added not one iota; but in this he merely followed the example of older nations and Initiates. If he clothed the grand truths revealed to him by his Hierophant under the most ingenious imagery, he did it to meet the requirements of the Israelites; that stiff-necked race would accept no God unless He were as anthropomorphic as those of the Olympus; and he himself failed to foresee the times when highly educated statesmen would be defending the husks of the fruit of wisdom that grew and developed in him on Mount Sinai, when communing with his own personal God - his divine Self. Moses understood the great danger of delivering such truths to the selfish, for he understood the fable of Prometheus and remembered the past. Hence, he veiled them from the profanation of public gaze and gave them out allegorically. And this is why his biographer says of him, that when he descended from Sinai,
Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone . . . And he put a veil upon his face.[ Exodus. xxxiv. 29, 33.]
And so he “put a veil” upon the face of his Pentateuch; and to such an extent that, using orthodox chronology, only 3376 years after the event people begin to acquire a conviction that it is “a veil indeed.” It is not the face of God or even of a Johovah shining through; not even the face of Moses, but verily the faces of the later Rabbis.
No wonder if Clemens wrote in the Stromateis that:
Similar, then, to the Hebrew enigmas in respect to concealment are those of the Egyptians also. [ Op, cit., V, vii.]
Old Wine in New Bottles
(Page 76) IT is more than likely, that the Protestants in the days of the Reformation knew nothing of the true origin of Christianity, or, to be more explicit and correct, of Latin Ecclesiasticism. Nor is it probable that the Greek Church knew much of it, the separation between the two having occurred at a time when, in the struggle for political power the Latin Church was securing, at any cost, the alliance of the highly educated, the ambitious and influential Pagans, while these were willing to assume the outward appearance of the new worship, provided they were themselves kept in power. There is no need to remind the reader here of the details of that struggle, well-known to every educated man. It is certain that the highly cultivated Gnostics and their leaders - such men as Saturnilus, an uncompromising ascetic, as Marcion, Valentinus, Basilides, Menander and Cerinthus - were not stigmatised by the (now) Latin Church because they were heretics, nor because their tenets and practices were indeed “ob turpitudinem portentosam nimium et horribilem,” “monstrous, revolting abominations,” as Baronius says of those of Carpocrates ; but simply because they knew too much of fact and truth. Kenneth R.H. Mackenzie correctly remarks;
They were stigmatised by the later Roman Church because they came into conflict with the purer Church of Christianity - the possession of which was usurped by the Bishops of Rome, but which original continues in its docility towards the founder, in the Primitive Orthodox Greek Church. [ The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia under “Gnosticism.”]
Unwilling to accept the responsibility of gratuitous assumptions, the writer deems it best to prove this inference by more than one personal and defiant admission of an ardent Roman Catholic writer, evidently entrusted with the delicate task by the Vatican.
Copies That Ante-Dated Originals - (Page 77) The Marquis de Mirville makes desperate efforts to explain to the Catholic interest certain remarkable discoveries in Archaeology and Palaeography, though the Church is cleverly made to remain outside of the quarrel and defence. This is undeniably shown by his ponderous volumes addressed to the Academy of France between 1803 and 1865. Seizing the pretext of drawing the attention of the materialistic “Immortals” to the “epidemic of Spiritualism,” the invasion of Europe and America by a numberless host of Satanic forces, he directs his efforts towards proving the same, by giving the full Genealogies and the Theogony of the Christian and Pagan deities, and by drawing parallels between the two. All such wonderful likenesses and identities are only “seeming and superficial,” he assures the reader. Christian symbols, and even characters, Christ, the Virgin, Angels and Saints, tells them, were all personated centuries beforehand by the fiends of hell, in order to discredit eternal truth by their ungodly copies. By their knowledge of futurity the devils anticipated events, having discovered the secrets of the Angels.” Heathen Deities, all the Sun-Gods, named Sotors - Saviours - born of immaculate mothers and dying a violent death, were only Ferouers [ In the Ferouers and Devs of Jacobi (Letters F. and D.) the word “ferouer” is explained in the following manner: The Ferouer is a part of the creature (whether man or animal) of which it is the type and which it survives. It is the Nous of the Greeks, therefore divine and immortal, and thus can hardly be the Devil or the satanic copy De Mirville would represent it (See Memoires de l’Academie des Inscriptions, Vol. XXXV11, P. 623, and chap. xxxix. p. 749). Foucher contradicts him entirely. The Ferouer was never the “principle of sensations,” but always referred to the most divine and pure portion of Man’s Ego - the spiritual principle. Anquetil says the Ferouer is the purest portion of man’s soul. The Persian Dev is the antithesis of the Ferouer, for the Dev has been transformed by Zoroaster into the Genius of Evil (whence the Christian Devil), but even the Dev is only finite: for having become possessed of the soul of man by usurpation, it will have to leave it at the great day of Retribution. The Dev obsesses the soul of the defunct for three days, during which the soul wanders about the spot at which it was forcibly separated from its body, the Ferouer ascends to the region of eternal Light. It was an unfortunate idea that made the noble Marquis de Mirville imagine the Ferouer to be a “satanic copy” of a divine original. By calling all the Gods of the Pagans - Apollo, Osiris, Brahma, Ormazd, Bel, etc., the “Ferouers of Christ and of the chief Angels,” he merely exhibits the God and the Angels he would honour as inferior to the Pagan Gods, as man is inferior to his Soul and Spirit: since the Ferouer is the immortal part of the mortal being of which it is the type and which it survives. Perchance the poor author is unconsciously prophetic: and Apollo, Brahma, Ormazd, Osiris, etc., are destined to survive and replace - as eternal cosmic verities - the evanescent fictions about the God, Christ and Angels of the Latin Church! ] - as they were called by the Zoroastrians - the demon-ante-dated copies (copies anticipées) of the Messiah to come,
The danger of recognition of such facsimiles had indeed lately become dangerously great. It had lingered threateningly in the air, hanging like a sword of Damocles over the Church, since the days of Voltaire, Dupuis and other writers on similar lines. The discoveries (Page 78) of the Egyptologists, the finding of Assyrian and Babylonian pre-Mosaic relics bearing the legend of Moses [ See George Smith's Babylon and other works] and especially the many rationalistic works published in England, such as Supernatural Religion, made recognition unavoidable. Hence the appearance of Protestant and Roman Catholic writers deputed to explain the inexplicable; to reconcile the face of Divine Revelation with the mystery that the divine personages, rites, dogmas and symbols of Christianity were so often identical with those of the several great heathen religions. The former - the Protestant defenders - tried to explain it, on the ground of “prophetic, precursory ideas”; the Latinists, such as De Mirville, by inventing a double set of Angels and Gods, the one divine and true, the other - the earlier - “copies ante-dating the originals” and due to a clever plagiarism by the Evil One. The Protestant stratagem is an old one, that of the Roman Catholics is so old that it has been forgotten, and is as good as new. Dr. Lundy’s Monumental Christianity and A Miracle in Stone belong to the first attempts. De. Mirville’s Pneumatologie to the second. In India and China, every such effort on the part of the Scotch and other missionaries ends in laughter, and does no harm; the plan devised by the Jesuits is more serious. De Mirville’s volumes are thus very important, as they proceed from a source which has undeniably the greatest learning of the age at its service, and this coupled with all the craft and casuistry that the sons of Loyola can furnish. The Marquis de Mirville was evidently helped by the acutest minds in the service of Rome.
He begins by not only admitting the justice of every imputation and charge made against the Latin Church as to the originality of her dogmas, but by taking a seeming delight in anticipating such charges; for he points to every dogma of Christianity as having existed in Pagan rituals in Antiquity. The whole Pantheon of Heathen Deities is passed in review by him, and each is shown to have had some point of resemblance with the Trinitarian personages and Mary. There is hardly a mystery, a dogma, or a rite in the Latin Church that is not shown by the author as having been “parodied by the Curvati” - the “Curved,” the Devils. All this being admitted and explained, the Symbologists ought to be silenced. And so they would be, if there were no materialistic critics to reject such omnipotency of the Devil in this world. For, if Rome admits the likenesses, she also claims the right of judgment between the true and the false Avatâra, the real and the unreal God, between the original and the copy - though the copy precedes the original by millenniums.
Which Were the Thieves? - (Page 79) Our author proceeds to argue that whenever the missionaries try to convert an idolater, they are invariably answered:
We had our Crucified before yours. What do you come to show us? [ This is as fanciful as it is arbitrary. Where is the Hindu or Buddhist who would speak of his “Crucified’?] Again, what should we gain by denying the mysterious side of this copy, under the plea that according to Weber all the present Puranas are remade from older ones, since here we have in the same order of personages a positive precedence which no one would ever think of contesting. [Op. cit., iv.237]
And the author instances Buddha, Krishna, Apollo, etc. Having admitted all this he escapes the difficulty in this wise:
The Church Fathers, however, who recognised their own property under all such sheep’s clothing . . . knowing by means of the Gospel . . . all the ruses of the pretended spirits of light; the Fathers, we say, meditating upon the decisive words, “all that ever came before me are robbers” (John, x. 8), did not hesitate in recognising the Occult agency at work, the general and superhuman direction given beforehand to falsehood, the universal attribute and environment of all these false Gods of the nations; “omnes dii gentium daemonia (elilim).” (Psalm xcv.)[ Loc cit., 250.]
With such a policy everything is made easy. There is not one glaring resemblance, not one fully proven identity, that could not thus be made away with. The above-quoted cruel, selfish, self-glorifying words, placed by John in the mouth of Him who was meekness and charity personified, could never have been pronounced by Jesus. The Occultists reject the imputation indignantly, and are prepared to defend the man as against the God, by showing whence come the words, plagiarised by the author of the Fourth Gospel. They are taken bodily from the “Prophecies” in the Book of Enoch. The evidence on this head of the learned biblical scholar, Archbishop Laurence, and of the author of the Evolution of Christianity, who edited the translation, may be brought forward to prove the fact. On the last page of the Introduction to the Book of Enoch is found the following passage:
The parable of the sheep rescued by the good Shepherd from hireling guardians and ferocious wolves, is obviously borrowed by the fourth Evangelist from (Page 80) Enoch, Ixxxix, in which the author depicts the shepherds as killing and destroying the sheep before the advent of the Lord, and this discloses the true meaning of that hitherto mysterious passage in the Johannine parable - “All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers” - language in which we now detect an obvious reference to the allegorical shepherds of Enoch.
“Obvious” truly, and something else besides. For, if Jesus pronounced the words in the sense attributed to him, then he must have read the Book of Enoch - a purely Kabalistic, Occult work, and he therefore recognised the worth and value of a treatise now declared apocryphal by his Churches. Moreover, he could not have been ignorant that these words belonged to the oldest ritual of Inititation.
[“Q”: Who knocks at the door?
A.: The good cowherd.
Q.: Who preceded thee?
A.: The three robbers.
Q.: Who follows thee?
A.: The three murderers,” etc., etc.”
Now this is the conversation that took place between the priest-initiators and the candidates for initiation during the mysteries enacted in the oldest sanctuaries of the Himalayan fastnesses. The ceremony is still performed to this day in one of the most ancient temples in a secluded spot of Nepaul. It originated with the Mysteries of the first Krishna, passed to the First Tirthankara and ended with Buddha, and is called the Kurukshetra rite, being enacted as a memorial of the great battle and death of the divine Adept. It is not Masonry, but an initiation into the Occult teachings of that Hero-Occultism, pure and simple.]
And if he had not read it, and the sentence belongs to John, or whoever wrote the Fourth Gospel, then what reliance can be placed on the authenticity of other sayings and parables attributed to the Christian Saviour?
Thus, De Mirville’s illustration is an unfortunate one. Every other proof brought by the Church to show the infernal character of the ante-and-anti-Christian copyists may be easily disposed of. This is perhaps unfortunate, but it is a fact, nevertheless - Magna est veritas et prevalebit.
The above is the answer to the Occultists to the two parties who charge them incessantly, the one with “Superstition.” and the other with “Sorcery.” To those of our Brothers who are Christians, and twit us with the secresy imposed upon the Eastern Chelas, adding invariably that their own “Book of God’ is “an open volume” for all “to read, understand, and be saved.” we would reply by asking them to study what we have just said in this Section, and then to refute it - if they can. There are very few in our days who are still prepared to assure their readers that the Bible had
God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth without any mixture of error for its matter.
Character of the Bible - (Page 81) Could Locke be asked the question now, he would perhaps be unwilling to repeat again that the Bible is
all pure, all sincere, nothing too much, nothing wanting.
The Bible, if it is not to be shown to be the very reverse of all this, sadly needs an interpreter acquainted with the doctrines of the East, as they are to be found in its secret volumes; nor is it safe now, after Archbishop Laurence's translation of the Book of Enoch, to cite Cowper and assure us that the Bible
. . .gives a light to every age,
It gives, but borrows none.
for it does borrow, and that very considerably; especially in the opinion of those who, ignorant of its symbolical meaning and of the university of the truths underlying and concealed in it, are able to judge only from its dead letter appearance. It is a grand volume, a master-piece composed of clever, ingenious fables containing great verities; but it reveals the latter only to those who, like the Initiates, have a key to its inner meaning; a tale sublime in its morality and didactics truly - still a tale and an allegory; a repertory of invented personages in its older Jewish portions, and of dark sayings and parables in its later additions, and thus quite misleading to anyone ignorant of its Esotericism. Moreover it is Astrolatry and Sabaean worship, pure and simple, that is to be found in the Pentateuch when it is read exoterically, and Archaic Science and Astronomy to a most wonderful degree, when interpreted - Esoterically.
The Book of Enoch The Origin and the Foundation of Christianity
(Page 82) WHILE making a good deal of the Mercavah, the Jews, or rather their synagogues, rejected the Book of Enoch, either because it was not included from the first in the Hebrew Canon, or else, as Tertullian thought, it was disavowed
by the Jews like all other Scripture which speaks of Christ [Book of Enoch, Archbishop Laurence’s translation. Introduction, p.v.]
of these reasons was the real one. The Synedrion would have nothing to do with
it, simply because it was more of a magic than a purely kabalistic work. The
present day Theologians of both Latin and Protestant Churches class it among
apocryphal productions. Nevertheless the New Testament, especially in
the Acts and Epistles, teems with ideas and doctrines, now accepted
and established as dogmas by the infallible Roman and other Churches, and even
with the whole sentences taken bodily from Enoch, or the “pseudo-Enoch,”
who wrote under that name in Aramaic or Syro-Chaldaic, as asserted by Bishop
Laurence, the translator of the Ethiopian text.
The plagiarisms are so glaring that the author of The Evolution of Christianity, who edited Bishop Laurence’s translation, was compelled to make some suggestive remarks in his Introduction. On internal evidence [ The Book of Enoch was unknown to Europe for a thousand years, when Bruce found in Abyssinia some copies of it in Ethiopic; it was translated by Archbishop Laurence in 1821, from the text in the Bodleian Library, Oxford.] this book is found to have been written before the Christian period (whether two or twenty centuries does not matter). As correctly argued by the Editor, it is
either the inspired forecast of a great Hebrew prophet, predicting with miraculous accuracy the future teaching of Jesus of Nazareth, or the Semitic romance from which the latter borrowed His conceptions of the triumphant return of the Son of man, to occupy a judicial throne in the midst of rejoicing saints and trembling sinners, expectant of everlasting happiness or eternal fire; and whether these celestial visions be accepted as human or Divine, they have exercised so vast an influence on the destinies of mankind for nearly two thousand years that candid and impartial seekers after religious truth can no longer delay enquiry into the relationship of the Book of Enoch with the revelation, or the evolution, of Christianity. [Op. cit., p.xx.]
The Book of Enoch and Christianity -
(Page 83) The Book of Enoch
also records the supernatural control of the elements, through the action of individual angels presiding over the winds, the sea, hail, frost, dew, the lightening’s flash and reverberating thunder. The names of the principal fallen angels are also given, among whom we recognise some of the invisible powers named in the incantations [magical] inscribed on the terracotta cups of Hebrew-Chaldee conjurations. [ Loc. cit.]
We also find on these cups the word “Halleluiah,” showing that
a word with which ancient Syro-Chaldeans conjured has become, through the vicissitudes of language, the Shibboleth of modern Revivalists.[ Op. cit., p. xiv., note.]
The Editor proceeds after this to give fifty-seven verses from various parts of the Gospels and Acts, with parallel passages from the Book of Enoch, and says:
The attention of theologians has been concentrated on the passage in the Epistle of Jude, because the author specifically names the prophet; but the cumulative coincidence of language and ideas in Enoch and the authors of the New Testament Scripture, as disclosed in the parallel passages which we have collated, clearly indicates that the work of the Semitic Milton was the inexhaustible source from which Evangelists and Apostles, or the men who wrote in their names, borrowed their conceptions of the resurrection, judgement, immortality, perdition, and of the universal reign of righteousness, under the eternal dominion of the Son of man. This evangelical plagiarism culminates in the Revelation of John, which adapts the visions of Enoch to Christianity, with modifications in which we miss the sublime simplicity of the great master of apocalyptic prediction, who prophesied in the name of the antediluvian patriarch. [Op. cit., p.xxxv.]
In fairness to truth, the hypothesis ought at least to have been suggested, that the Book of Enoch in its present form is simply a transcript - with numerous pre-Christian and post-Christian additions and interpolations - from far older texts. Modern research went so far as to point out that Enoch is made, in Chapter Ixxi, to divide the day and night into eighteen parts, and to represent the longest day in the year as consisting of twelve out of these eighteen parts, while a day of sixteen (Page 84) hours in length could not have occurred in Palestine. The translator, Archbishop Laurence, remarks thus:
The region in which the author lived must have been situated not lower than forty-one degrees north latitude, where the longest day is fifteen hours and a half, nor higher perhaps than forty-nine degrees, where the longest day is precisely sixteen hours. This will bring the country where he wrote as high up at least as the northern districts of the Caspian and Euxine Seas . . . the author of the Book of Enoch was perhaps a member of one of the tribes which Shalmaneser carried away, and placed “in Halah and in Habor by the river Goshen, and in the cities of the Medes.” [ Op. cit., p.xiii.]
Further on, it is confessed that:
It cannot be said that internal evidence attests the superiority of the Old Testament to the Book of Enoch . . . The Book of Enoch teaches the pre-existence of the Son of man, the Elect One, the Messiah, who “from the beginning existed in secret, [ The Seventh Principle, the First Emanation.] and whose name was invoked in the presence of the Lord of Spirits, before the sun and the signs were created.” The author also refers to the “other Power who was upon Earth over the water on that day” - an apparent reference to the language of Genesis i. 2.[ Op cit., p.xxxvii, and xI.] [We maintain that it applies as well to the Hindu Nârâyana - the “mover on the waters.”] We have thus the Lord of Spirits, the Elect One, and a third Power, seemingly foreshadowing the Trinity [as much as the Trimûrti] of futurity; but although Enoch’s ideal Messiah doubtless exercised an important influence on primitive conceptions of the Divinity of the Son of man, we fail to identify his obscure reference to another “Power” with the Trinitarianism of the Alexandrine school; more especially as “angels of power” abound in the visions of Enoch. [ Op cit., pp,x1, and 1i.]
An Occultist would hardly fail to identify the said “Power.” The Editor concludes his remarkable reflections by adding:
Thus far we learn that the Book of Enoch was published before the Christian Era by some great Unknown of Semitic [?] race, who, believing himself to be inspired in a post-prophetic age, borrowed the name of an antediluvian patriarch [ Who stands for the “Solar” or Manvantaric Year.] to authenticate his own enthusiastic forecast of the Messianic kingdom. And as the contents of his marvellous book enter freely into the composition of the New Testament, it follows that if the author was not an inspired prophet, who predicted the teachings of Christianity, he was a visionary enthusiast whose illusions were accepted by Evangelists and Apostles as revelation - alternative conclusions which involve the Divine or human origin of Christianity. [ Op Cit., pp.xli, xlii.]
Enoch Records The Races - (Page 85) The outcome of all of which is, in the words of the same Editor:
The discovery that the language and ideas of alleged revelation are found in a pre-existent work, accepted by Evangelists and Apostles as inspired, but classed by modern theologians among apocryphal productions. [ Op. cit., p.xlviii.]
The accounts also for the unwillingness of the reverend librarians of the Bodleian Library to publish the Ethopian text of the Book of Enoch.
Chapter xcii. records a series of prophecies extending from Enoch’s own time to about one thousand years beyond the present generation, [ Op. cit., p.xxiii.]
is faulty. The prophecies extend to the end of our present Race, not merely to a “thousand years” hence. Very true that:
In the system of [Christian] chronology adopted, a day stands [occasionally] for a hundred, and a week for seven hundred years. [Loc. cit.]
But this is an arbitrary and fanciful system adopted by Christians to make Biblical chronology fit with facts or theories, and does not represent the original thought. The “days” stand for the undetermined periods of the Side-Races, and the “weeks” for the Sub-Races, the Root-Races being referred to by an expression that is not even found in the English translation. Moreover the sentence at the bottom of page 150:
Subsequently, in the fourth week . . . the visions of the holy and the righteous shall be seen, the order of generation after generation shall take place, [ xcii.9.]
is quite wrong. It stands in the original: “the order of generation after generation has taken place on the earth,” etc.; that is, after the first human race procreated in the truly human way had sprung up in the Third Root-Races: a change which entirely alters the meaning. Then all that is given in the translation - as very likely also in the Ethiopic text, since the copies have been sorely tampered with - as about things which were to happen in the future, is, we are informed, in the past tense of the original Chaldean MSS., and is not prophecy, but a narrative of what had already come to pass. When Enoch begins - “to speak from a book” [ Op. cit., xcii.4.] he is reading the account (Page 86) given by a great Seer, and the prophecies are not his own, but are from the Seer. Enoch or Enoichion means “internal eye” or Seer. Thus every Prophet and Adept may be called “Enoichion,” without becoming a pseudo-Enoch. But here, the Seer who compiled the present Book of Enoch is distinctly shown as reading out from a book:
I have been born the seventh in the first week [the seventh branch, or Side-Race, of the first Sub-Race, after physical generation had begun, namely, in the third Root-Race] . . . But after me, in the second week [second Sub-Race] great wickedness shall arise [arose, rather] and in that week the end of the first shall take place, in which mankind shall be safe. But when the first is completed iniquity shall grow up. [Op.cit.,xcii, 4-7 ]
As translated it has no sense. As it stands in the Esoteric text, it simply means, that the First Root-Race shall come to an end during the second Sub-Race of the Third Root-Race, in the period of which time mankind will be safe; all this having no reference whatever to the biblical Deluge. Verse 10th speaks of the sixth week [sixth Sub-Race of the Third Root Race] when
All those who are in it shall be darkened, the hearts of all of them shall be forgetful of wisdom [ the divine knowledge will be dying out] and in it shall a man ascend.
And during its completion [of the “sixth week,” or the sixth Sub-Race ] he shall burn the house of dominion [the half of the globe or the then inhabited continent] with fire, and all the race of the elect root shall be dispersed. [ Op. cit., xcii,xx.]
The Book of Enoch Symbolical - (Page 87) The above applies to the Elect Initiates, and not at all to the Jews, the supposed chosen people, or to the Babylonian captivity, as interpreted by the Christian theologians. Considering that we find Enoch, or his perpetuator, mentioning the execution of the “degree upon sinners” in several different weeks, [ Op.cit., xcii, 7, 11, 13, 15.] saying that “every work of the ungodly shall disappear from the whole earth” during this fourth time (the Fourth Race), it surely can hardly apply to the one solitary Deluge of the Bible, still less to the Captivity.
It follows, therefore, that as the Book of Enoch covers the five Races of the Manvantara, with a few allusions to the last two, it does not contain “Biblical prophecies,” but simply facts taken out of the Secret Books of the East. The Editor, moreover, confesses that:
The preceding six verses, viz., 13th, 15th, 16th, 17th, and 18th, are taken from between the 14th and 15th verses of the nineteenth chapter, where they are to be found in the MSS. [ Op. cit., note, p.152 ]
Thus the Book of Enoch is entirely symbolical. It relates to the history of the human Races and of their early relation to Theogony, the symbols being interblended with astronomical and cosmic mysteries.
(Page 88) One chapter is missing, however, in the Noachian records (from both the Paris and the Bodleian MSS.), namely, Chapter 1viii, in Sect X; this could not be remodelled, and therefore it had to disappear, disfigured fragments alone having been left out of it. The dream about the cows, the black, red and white heifers, relates to the first Races, their division and disappearance. Chapter 1xxxviii, in which one of the four Angels “went to the white cows and taught them a mystery,” after which, the mystery being born “became a man,” refers to (a) the first group evolved of primitive Aryans, (b) to the “mystery of the Hermaphrodite” so called, having reference to the birth of the first human Races as they are now. The well-known rite in India, one that has survived in that patriarchal country to this day, known as the passage, or rebirth through the cow - a ceremony to which those of lower castes who are desirous of becoming Brahmans have to submit - has originated in this mystery. Let any Eastern Occultist read with careful attention the above-named chapter in the Book of Enoch, and he will find that the “Lord of the Sheep,” in whom Christians and European Mystics see Christ, is the Hierophant Victim whose name in Sanskrit we dare not give. Again, that while the Western Churchmen see Egyptians and Israelites in the “sheep and wolves,” all these animals relate in truth to the trials of the Neophyte and the mysteries of initiation, whether in India or Egypt, and to that most terrible penalty incurred by the “wolves” - those who reveal indiscriminately that which is only for the knowledge of the Elect and the “Perfect.”
The Christians who, thanks to later interpolations, [Those interpolations and alternations are found in almost every case where figures are given - especially whenever the numbers eleven and twelve come in - as these are all made (by the Christians) to relate to the numbers of Apostles, and Tribes, and Patriarchs. The translator of the Ethiopic text - Archbishop Laurence - attributes them generally to “mistakes of the transcriber” whenever the two texts, the Paris and the Bodleian MSS., differ. We fear it is no mistake, in most cases.] have made out in that chapter a triple prophecy relating to the Deluge, Moses and Jesus, are mistaken, as in reality it bears directly on the punishment and loss of Atlantis and the penalty of indiscretion. (The “Lord of the sheep” is Karma and the “Head of the Hierophants” also, the Supreme Initiator on earth.) He says to Enoch who implores him to save the leaders of the sheep from being devoured by the beasts of prey:
I will cause a recital to be made before me . . . how many they have delivered up to destruction, and . . . what they will do; whether they will act as I have commanded them or not.
Occultists Do Not Reject the Bible -
(Page 89) Of this, however, they shall be ignorant; neither shalt thou make any explanation to them, neither shalt thou reprove them; but there shall be an account of all the destruction done by them in their respective seasons. [Op. cit., 1xxxviii. 99, 100.]
. . . He looked in silence, rejoicing they were devoured, swallowed up, and carried off, and leaving them in the power of every beast for food. . [ Loc.cit.,94. This passage, as will be presently shown, has led to a very curious discovery.]
Those who labour under the impression that the Occultists of any nation reject the Bible, in its original text and meaning, are wrong. As well reject the Books of Thoth, the Chaldaean Kabalah or the Book of Dzyan itself. Occultists only reject the one-sided interpretations and the human element in the Bible, which is an Occult, and therefore a sacred, volume as much as the others. And terrible indeed is the punishment of all those who transgress the permitted limits of secret revelations. From Prometheus to Jesus, and from Him to the highest Adept as to the lowest disciple, every revealer of mysteries has had to become a Chrestos, a “man of sorrow” and a martyr. “Beware,” said one of the greatest Masters, “of revealing the Mystery to those without” - to the profane, the Sadducee and the unbeliever. All the great Hierophants in history are shown ending their lives by violent deaths - Buddha, [ In the profane history of Gautama Buddha he dies at the good old age of eighty, and passes off from life to death peacefully with all the serenity of a great saint, as Barthelemy St. Hilaire has it. Not so in the Esoteric and true interpretation which reveals the real sense of the profane and allegorical statement that makes Gautama, the Buddha, die very unpoetically from the effects of too much pork, prepared for him by Tsonda. How one who preached that the killing of animals was the greatest sin, and who was a perfect vegetarian, could die from eating pork, is a question that is never asked by our Orientalists, some of whom made [as now do many charitable missionaries in Ceylon] great fun at the alleged occurrence. The simple truth is that the said rice and pork are purely allegorical. Rice stands for “forbidden fruit,” like Eve's "apple", and means Occult knowledge with the Chinese and Tibetans; and “pork “ for Brahmanical teachings - Vishnu having assumed in his first Avatâra the form of a boar, in order to raise the earth on the surface of the waters of space. It is not, therefore, from “pork” that Buddha died, but for having divulged some of the Brahmanical mysteries, after which, seeing the bad effects brought on some unworthy people by the revelation, he preferred, instead of availing himself of Nirvana, to leave his earthly form, remaining still in the sphere of the living, in order to help humanity to progress. Hence his constant reincarnations in the hierarchy of the Dalai and Teshu Lamas, among other bounties. Such is the Esoteric explanation. The life of Gautama will be more fully discussed later on.] Pythagoras, Zoroaster, most of the great Gnostics, the founders of their respective schools; and in our own more modern epoch a number of Fire-Philosophers of Rosicrucians and Adepts. All of these are shown - whether plainly or under the veil of allegory - as paying the penalty for the revelations they had made. This may seem to the profane reader only coincidence.
Wait until sin pass away, for their [the sinners] names shall be blotted out of the holy books [the astral records], their seed shall be destroyed and their spirits slain.[ Op. cit., cv.21.]
Hermetic and Kabalistic Doctrines
(Page 91) THE cosmogony of Hermes is as veiled as the Mosaic system, only it is upon its face far more in harmony with the doctrines of the Secret Sciences and even of Modern Science. Says the thrice great Trismegistus, “the hand that shaped the world out of formless pre-existent matter is no hand”; to which Genesis is made to reply, “The world was created out of nothing,” although the Kabbalah denies such a meaning in its opening sentences. The Kabalists have never, any more than have the Indian Aryans, admitted such an absurdity. With them, Fire, or Heat, and Motion [ The eternal and incessant “inbreathing and outbreathing of Parabrahman” or Nature, the Universe of Space, whether during Manvantara or Pralaya.] were chiefly instrumental in the formation of the world out of pre-existing Matter. The Parabrahman and Mûlaprakriti of the Vedântins are the prototypes of the En Suph and Shekinah of the Kabalists. Aditi is the original of Sephira, and the Prajâpatis are the elder brothers of the Sephiroth. The nebular theory of Modern Science, with all its mysteries, is solved in the cosmogony of the Archaic Doctrine; and the paradoxical though very scientific enunciation, that “ cooling causes contraction and contraction causes heat; therefore cooling causes heat,” is shown as the chief agency in the formation of the worlds, and especially of our sun and solar system.
All this is contained within the small compass of Sepher Jetsirah in its thirty-two wonderful Ways of Wisdom, signed “Jah Jehovah Sabaoth,” for whomsoever has the key to its hidden meaning. As to the dogmatic or theological interpretation of the first verses in Genesis it is pertinently answered in the same book, where speaking of the (Page 92) Three Mothers, Air, Water and Fire, the writer describes them as a balance with
The good in one scale, the evil in the other, and the oscillating tongue of the Balance between them. [Op. cit., iii, x.]
One of the secret names of the One Eternal and Ever-Present Deity, was in every country the same, and it has preserved to this day a phonetic likeness in the various languages. The Aum of the Hindus, the sacred syllable, had become the ‘Aιψν with the Greeks, and the Aevum with the Romans - the Pan or All. The “thirtieth way” is called in the Sepher Jetzirah the “gathering understanding,” because
Thereby gather the celestial adepts judgments of the stars and celestial signs, and their observations of the orbits are the perfection of science. [Op. cit.,30.]
The thirty-second and last is called therein the “serving understanding,” and it is so-called because it is
A disposer of all those that are serving in the work of the Seven Planets, according to their Hosts.[ Op. cit.,32.]
The “work” was Initiation, during which all the mysteries connected with the “Seven Planets” were divulged, and also the mystery of the “Sun-Initiate” with his seven radiances or beams cut off - the glory and triumph of the anointed, the Christos; a mystery that makes plain the rather puzzling expression of Clemens:
For we shall find that very many of the dogmas that are held by such sects [of Barbarian and Hellenic Philosophy] as have not become utterly senseless, and are not cut out from the order of nature [“by cutting off Christ,” [ Those who are aware of the term Christos was applied by the Gnostics to the Higher Ego (the ancient Pagan Greek Initiates doing the same), will readily understand the allusion. Christos was said to be cut off from the lower Ego, Chrestos, after the final and supreme Initiation, when the two became blended in one; Chrestos being conquered and resurrected in the glorified Christos - Franck, Die Kabbala, 75: Dunlap, Sod, Vol.11.] or rather Chrestos] . . . Correspond in their origin and with the truth as a whole. [ Stromateis,1. xiii.]
In Isis Unveiled, [ Op.cit.,II.viii.] the reader will find fuller information than can be given here on the Zohar and its author, the great Kabalist, Simeon Ben Jochai. It is said there that on account of his being known to be in possession of the secret knowledge and of the Mercaba, which insured the reception of the “Word,” his very life was endangered, and he had to fly to the wilderness, where he lived in a cave for twelve years surrounded by faithful disciples, and finally died there amid signs and wonders. [ Many are the marvels recorded as having taken place at his death, or we should rather say his translation; for he did not die as others do, but having suddenly disappeared, while a dazzling light filled the cavern with glory, his body was again seen upon its subsidence. When this heavenly light gave place to the habitual semi-darkness of the gloomy cave - then only, says Ginsburg, “the disciples of Israel perceived that the lamp of Israel was extinguished.” His biographers tell us that there were voices heard from Heaven during the preparation for his funeral, and at his interment, when the coffin was lowered into the deep cave prepared for it, a flame broke forth and a voice mighty and majestic pronounced these words: 'This is he who caused the earth to quake, and the kingdoms to shake!' ]
The Kabalah and The Book of Enoch - (Page 93) His teachings on the origin of the Secret Doctrine, or, as he also calls it, the Secret Wisdom, are the same as those found in the East, with the exception that in place of the Chief of a Host of Planetary Spirits he puts “God,” saying that this Wisdom was first taught by God himself to a certain number of Elect Angels; whereas in the Eastern Doctrine the saying is different, as will be seen.
Some synthetic and Kabalistic studies on the sacred Book of Enoch and the Taro (Rota) are before us. We quote from the MS. copy of a Western Occultist, who is prefaced by these words:
There is but one Law, one Principle, one Agent, one Truth and one Word. That which is above is analogically as that which is below. All that which is, is the result of quantities and of equilibriums.
The axiom of Eliphas Levi and this triple epigraph show the identity of thought between the East and the West with regard to the Secret Science which, as the same MS, tells us, is:
The key of things concealed, the key of the sanctuary. This is the Sacred Word which gives to the Adept the supreme reason of Occultism and its Mysteries. It is the Quintessence of Philosophies and of Dogmas; it is the Alpha and Omega; it is the Light, Life and Wisdom Universal.
The Taro of the sacred Book of Enoch, or Rota, is prefaced, moreover, with this explanation:
The antiquity of this book is lost in the night of time. It is of Indian origin, and goes back to an epoch long before Moses . . . It is written upon detached leaves, which at the first were of fine gold and precious metals . . . It is symbolical, and its combinations adapt themselves to all the wonders of the Spirit. Altered by its passage across the Ages, it is nevertheless preserved - thanks to the ignorance of the curious - in its types and its most important primitive figures.
This is the Rota of Enoch, now called Taro of Enoch, to which de Mirville alludes, as we saw, as the means used for “evil Magic.” the (Page 94) “metallic plates [or leaves] escaped from destruction during the Deluge” and which are attributed by him to Cain. They have escaped the Deluge for the simple reason that this Flood was not “Universal.” And it is said to be “of Indian origin,” because its origin is with the Indian Aryans of the first Sub-Race of the Fifth Root-Race, before the final destruction of the last stronghold of Atlantis. But, if it originated with the forefathers of the primitive Hindus, it was not in India that it was first used. Its origin is still more ancient and must be traced beyond and into the Himaleh, [ Pockocke, may be, was not altogether wrong in deriving the German Heaven, Himmel, from Himalaya; nor can it be denied that it is the Hindu Kailasa (Heaven) that is the father of the Greek Heaven (Koilon), and of the Latin Coelum.] the Snowy Range. It was born in that mysterious locality which no one is able to locate, and which is the despair of both Geographers and Christian Theologians - the regions in which the Brahman places his Kailasa, the Mount Sumeru, and the Pârvatî Pamîr, transformed by the Greeks into Paropamisus.
Round this locality, which still exists, the traditions of the Garden of Eden were built. From these regions the Greeks obtained their Parnassus [ See Pockocke's India in Greece, and his derivation of Mount Parnassus from Parnasa, the leaf and branch huts of the Hindu ascetics, half shrine and half habitation. “Part of the Par-o-Pamisus (the hill of Bamian), is called Parnassus. “These mountains are called Devanica, because they are so full of Devas of Gods, called “Gods of the Earth:” Bhu Devas. They lived, according to the Puranas, in bowers or huts, called Parnasas, because they were made of leaves; (Parnas),” p.302.] and thence proceeded most of the biblical personages, some of them in their day men, some demigods and heroes, some - though very few - myths, the astronomical double of the former. Abram was one of them - a Chaldaean Brâhman, [ Rawlinson is justly very confident of an Aryan and Vedic influence on the early mythology and history of Babylon and Chaldea.] says the legend, transformed later, after he had repudiated his Gods and left his Ur (pur, “town”?) in Chaldaea, into A-brahms [ This is a Secret Doctrine affirmation, and may or may not be accepted. Only Abrahm, Isaac and Judah resemble terribly the Hindu Brahmâ, Ikshvâku and Yadu.] (or A-braham ”no-brâhman” who emigrated. Abram becoming the “father of many nations” is thus explained. The student of Occultism has to bear in mind that every God and hero in ancient Pantheons (that of the Bible included), has three biographies in the narrative, so to say, running parallel with each other and each connected with one of the aspects of the hero - historical, astronomical and perfectly mythical, the last serving to connect the other two together and smooth away the asperities and discordancies in the narrative, and gathering into one or more symbols the verities of the first two. Localities are made to correspond with astronomical and even with psychic events.
Numbers and Measures - (Page 95) History was thus made captive by ancient Mystery, to become later on the great Sphynx of the nineteenth century. Only, instead of devouring her too dull querists who will unriddle her whether she acknowledges it or not, she is desecrated and mangled by the modern Oedipus, before he forces her into the sea of speculations in which the Sphynx is drowned and perishes. This has now become self-evident, not only through the Secret Teachings, parsimoniously as they may be given, but by earnest and learned Symbologists and even Geometricians. The Key to the Hebrew Egyptian Mystery, in which a learned Mason of Cincinnati, Mr. Ralston Skinner, unveils the riddle of a God, with such ungodly ways about him as the Biblical Jah-ve, is followed by the establishment of a learned society under the presidentship of a gentleman from Ohio and four vice-presidents, one of whom is Piazzi Smith, the well-known Astronomer and Egyptologist. The Director of the Royal Observatory in Scotland and author of The Great Pyramid, Pharaonic by name, Humanitarian by fact, its Marvels, Mysteries, and its Teachings, is seeking to prove the same problem as the American author and Mason; namely, that the English system of measurement is the same as that used by the ancient Egyptians in the construction of their Pyramid, or in Mr. Skinner's own words that the Pharaonic “source of measures” originated the “British inch and the ancient cubit.” It “originated” much more than this, as will be fully demonstrated before the end of the next century. Not only is everything in Western religion related to measures, geometrical figures, and time-calculations, the principal period-durations being founded on most of the historical personages,[ It is said in The Gnostics and their Remains, by C.W. King (p.13) with regard to the names of Brahma and Abram: “This figure of the man, Seir Anpin, consists of 243 numbers, being the numerical value of the letters in the name ‘Abram’ signifying the different orders in the celestial Hierarchies. In fact the names Abram and Brahma are equivalent in numerical value.” Thus to one acquainted with Esoteric Symbolism, it does not seem at all strange to find in the Loka-pâlas (the four cardinal and intermediate points of the compass personified by eight Hindu Gods) Indra’s elephant, names Abhra - (matanga) and his wife Abhramu. Abhra is in a way a Wisdom Deity, since it is this elephant’s head that replaced that of Ganesha (Ganapati) the God of Wisdom, cut off by Shiva. Now Abhra means “cloud,” and it is also the name of the city where Abram is supposed to have resided - when read backwards - “Arba (Kirjath) the city of four . . . Abram is Abra with an appended m final, and Abra read backward is Arba” (Key to the Hebrew Egyptian Mystery). The author might have added that Abra meaning in Sanskrit “in, or of, the clouds,” the cosmo-astronomical symbol of Abram becomes still plainer. All of these ought to be read in their originals , in Sanskrit.] but the latter are also connected with heaven and earth truly, only with the Indo-Aryan heaven and earth, not with those of Palestine.
The prototypes of nearly all the biblical personages are to be sought (Page 96) for in the early Pantheon of India. It is the “Mind-born” Sons of Brahma, or rather of the Dhyâni-Pitara (the “Father -Gods”), the “Sons of Light,” who have given birth to the “Sons of Earth” - the Patriachs. For if the Rig Veda and its three sister Vedas have been “milked out from fire, air and sun,” or Agni, Indra, and Surya, as Manu-Smriti tells us, the Old Testament was most undeniably “milked out” of the most ingenious brains of Hebrew Kabalists, partly in Egypt and partly in Babylonia - “ the seat of Sanskrit literature and Brahman learning from her origin.” as Colonel Vans Kennedy truly declared. One of such copies was Abram or Abraham, into whose bosom every orthodox Jew hopes to be gathered after death, that bosom being localised as “heaven in the clouds” or Abhra.[ Before these theories and speculations - we are willing to admit they are such - are rejected, the following few points ought to be explained. (1) Why after leaving Egypt, was the patriarch’s name changed by Jehovah from Abram to Abraham. (2) Why Sarai becomes on the same principle Sarah (Gen., xvii.). (3) Whence the strange coincidence of names? (4) Why should Alexander Polyhistor say that Abraham was born at Kamarina or Uria, a city of soothsayers, and invented Asrronomy? (5) “The Abrahamic recollections go back at least three millenniums beyond the grandfather of Jacob, “says Bunsen (Egypt’s Place in History. v.35.) ]
From Abraham to Enoch’s Taro there seems to be a considerable distance, yet the two are closely related by more than one link, Gaffarel has shown that the four symbolical animals on the twenty-first key of the Taro, at the third septenary, are the Teraphim of the Jews invented and worshipped by Abram’s father Terah, and used in the oracles of the Urim and Thummim. Moreover, astronomically Abraham is the sun-measure and a portion of the sun, while Enoch is the solar year, as much as are Hermes or Thot; and Thot, numerically, “was the equivalent of Moses, or Hermes,” “the lord of the lower realms, also esteemed as a teacher of wisdom,” the same Mason-mathematician tells us; and the Taro being, according to one of the latest bulls of the Pope, “an invention of Hell,” the same “as Masonry and Occultism,” the relation is evident. The Taro contains indeed the mystery of all such transmutations of personages into sidereal bodies and vice versa. The “wheel of Enoch” is an archaic invention, the most ancient of all, for it is found in China. Eliphas Levi says there was not a nation but had it, its real meaning being preserved in the greatest secrecy. It was a universal heirloom.
The Doctrine Belongs to All
(Page 97) The doctrine itself being the result of whole millenniums of thought, is therefore the joint property of Adepts of every nation under the sun. Nevertheless, the Zohar teaches practical Occultism more than any other work on that subject; not as it is translated and commented upon by its various critics though, but with the secret signs on its margins. These signs contain the hidden instructions, apart from the metaphysical interpretations and apparent absurdities so fully credited by Josephus, who was never initiated and gave out the dead letter as he had received it. [ Isis Unveiled, ii. 350.]
(Page 98) THE transcendental methods of the Kabalah must not be mentioned in a public work; but its various systems of arithmetical and geometrical ways of unriddling certain symbols may be described. The Zohar methods of calculation, with their three sections, the Gematria, Notaricon and Temura, also the Albath and Algath, are extremely difficult to practice. We refer those who would learn more to Cornelius Agrippa’s works [ See Isis Unveiled, ii. 218-300. Gematria is formed by a metathesis from the Greek word γραμματειαNotaricon may be compared to stenography; Temura is permutation - a way of dividing the alphabet and shifting letters.] But none of those systems can ever be understood unless a Kabalist becomes a real Master in his Science. The Symbolism of Pythagoras requires still more arduous labour. His symbols are very numerous, and to comprehend even the general gist of his abstruse doctrines from his Symbology would necessitate years of study. His chief figures are the square (the Tetraktys), the equilateral triangle, the point within a circle, the cube, the triple triangle, and finally the forty-seventh proposition of Euclid’s Elements, of which proposition Pythagoras was the inventor. But with the exception, none of the foregoing symbols originated with him, as some believe. Millenniums before his day, they were well known in India, whence the Samian Sage brought them, not as a speculation, but as a demonstrated Science, says Porphyry, quoting from the Pythagorean Moderatus.
The numerals of Pythagoras were hieroglyphical symbols by means whereof he explains all ideas concerning the nature of things. [ De Vita Pythag.]
Numbers and Magic - (Page 99) The fundamental geometrical figure of the Kabalah, as given in the Book of Numbers, [ We are not aware that a copy of this ancient work is embraced in the catalogue of any European library; but it is one of the “Books of Hermes,” and it is referred to and quotations are made from it in the works of a number of ancient and mediaeval philosophical authors. Among these authorities are Arnoldo di Villanova’s Rosarium Philosoph., Francesco Arnuphi’s Opus de Lapide, Hermes Trismegistus’ Tractatus de Transmutatione Metallorum and Tabula Smaragdina, and above all the treatise of Raymond Lully, Ab Angelis Opus Divinum de Quinta Essentia.] that figure which tradition and the Esoteric Doctrines tell us was given by the Deity Itself to Moses on Mount Sinai, [Exodus,xxv.40.] contains the key to the universal problem in its grandiose, because simple, combinations. This figure contains in itself all the others.
The Symbolism of numbers and their mathematical interrelations is also one of the branches of Magic, especially of mental Magic, divination and correct perception in clairvoyance. Systems differ, but the root idea is everywhere the same. As shown in the Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, by Kenneth R.H. Mackenzie:
One system adopts unity, another trinity, a third quinquinity; again we have sexagons, heptagons, novems, and so on, until the mind is lost in the survey of the materials alone of a science of numbers. [Sub voce “Numbers.”]
The Devanâgarî characters in which Sanscrit is generally written, have all that the Hermetic, Chaldaean and Hebrew alphabets have, and in addition the Occult significance of the “eternal sound,” and the meaning given to every letter in its relation to spiritual as well as terrestrial things. As there are only twenty-two letters in the Hebrew alphabet and ten fundamental numbers, while in the Devanâgarî there are thirty-five consonants and sixteen vowels, making altogether fifty-one simple letters, with numberless combinations in addition, the margin for speculation and knowledge is in proportion considerably wider. Every letter has is equivalent in other languages, and its equivalent in a figure or figures of the calculation table. It has also numerous other significations, which depend upon the special idiosyncrasies and characteristics of the person, object, or subject to be studied. As the Hindus claim to have received the Devanagari characters from Sarasvati, the inventress of Sanskrit, the “language of the Devas” or Gods (in their exoteric pantheon), so most of the ancient nations claimed the same privilege for the origin of their letters and tongue. The Kabalah (Page 100) calls the Hebrew alphabet the “letters of the Angels,” which were communicated to the Patriarchs, just as the Devanagari was to the Rishis by the Devas. The Chaldaeans found their letters traced in the sky by the “yet unsettled stars and comets,” says the Book of Numbers; while the Phoenicians had a sacred alphabet formed by the twistings of the sacred serpents. The Natar Khari (hieratic alphabet) and secret (sacerdotal) speech of the Egyptians is closely related to the oldest “Secret Doctrine Speech.” It is a Devanâgarî with mystical combinations and additions, into which the Senzar largely enters.
The power and potency of numbers and characters are well known to many Western Occultists as being compounded from all these systems, but are still unknown to Hindu students, if not to their Occultists. In their turn European Kabalists are generally ignorant of the alphabetical secrets of Indian Esoterism. At the same time the general reader in the West knows nothing of either; least of all how deep are the traces left by the Esoteric numeral systems of the world in the Christian Churches.
Nevertheless this system of numerals solves the problem of cosmogony for whomsoever studies it, while the system of geometrical figures represents the numbers objectively.
To realise the full comprehension of the Deific and the Abstruse enjoyed by the Ancients, one has to study the origin of the figurative representations of their primitive Philosophers. The Books of Hermes are the oldest repositories of numerical Symbology in Western Occultism. In them we find that the number ten [ See Johannes Meursius, Denarius Pythagoricus.] is the Mother of the Soul, Life and Light being therein united. For as the sacred anagram Teruph shows in the Book of Keys (Numbers), the number 1 (one) is born from spirit, and the number 10 (ten) from Matter: “the unity has made the ten, the ten, the unity”; and this is only the Pantheistic axiom, in other words “God in Nature and Nature in God.”
The kabalistic Gematria is arithmetical, not geometrical. It is one of the methods for extracting the hidden meaning from letters, words, and sentences. It consists in applying to the letters of a word the sense they bear in numbers, in outward shape as well as in their individual sense. As illustrated by Ragon:
The figure I signified the living man (a body erect), man being the only living being enjoying this faculty. A head being added to it, the glyph (or letter) P was obtained, meaning paternity, creative potency; the R signifying the walking man (with his foot forward) going, iens, iturus [ Ragon, Maconnerie Occulte, p.426. note.]
Gods and Numbers -
(Page 101) The characters were also made supplementary to speech, every letter being at once a figure representing a sound for the ear, and idea to the mind; as, for instance the letter F, which is a cutting sound like that of air rushing quickly through space; fury, fusee, fugue, all words expressive of, and depicting what they signify. [ Ibid., p.432, note.]
But the above pertains to another system, that of the primitive and philosophical formation of the letters and their outward glyphic form - not to Gematria. The Temura is another kabalistic method, by which any word could be made to yield its mystery out of its anagram. So in Sepher Jetzirah we read “One - the spirit of the Alahim of Lives.” In the oldest kabalistic diagrams the Sephiroth (the seven and the three) are represented as wheels or circles, and Adam Kadmon, the primitive Man, as an upright pillar. “Wheels and seraphim and the holy creatures” (Chioth) says Rabbi Akiba. In still another system of the symbolical Kabalah called Albath - which arranges the letters of the alphabet by pairs in three rows - all the couples in the first row bear the numerical value ten; and in the system of Simeon Ben Shetah (an Alexandrian Neoplatonist under the first Ptolemy) the uppermost couple - the most sacred of all - is preceded by the Pythagorean cypher: one and a nought - 10.
All beings, from the first divine emanation, or “God manifested,” down to the lowest atomic existence, “have their particular number which distinguishes each of them and becomes the source of their attributes and qualities as of their destiny.” Chance, as taught by Cornelius Agrippa, is in reality only an unknown progression; and time but a succession of numbers. Hence, futurity being a compound of chance and time, these are made to serve Occult calculations in order to find the result of an event, or the future of one’s destiny. Said Pythagoras:
There is a mysterious connection between the Gods and numbers, on which the science of arithmancy is based. The soul is a world that is self-moving; the soul contains in itself, and is, the quaternary, the tetraktys [the perfect cube].
There are lucky and unlucky, or beneficent and maleficent numbers. Thus while the ternary - the first of the odd numbers (the one being the perfect and standing by itself in Occultism) - is the divine figure or the triangle; the duad was disgraced by the Pythagoreans from the (Page 102) first. It represented Matter, the passive and evil principle - the number of Maya, illusion.
While the number one symbolized harmony, order or the good principle (the one God expressed in Latin by Solus, from which the word Sol, the Sun, the symbol of the Deity), number two expressed a contrary idea. The science of good and evil began with it. All that is double, false, opposed to the only reality, was depicted by the binary. It also expressed the contrasts in Nature which are always double: night and day, light and darkness, cold and heat, dampness and dryness, health and sickness, error and truth, male and female, etc. . . . The Romans dedicated to Pluto the second month of the year, and the second day of that month to expiations in honour of the Manes. Hence the same rite established by the Latin Church, and faithfully copied. Pope John XIX, instituted in 1003 the Festival of the Dead, which had to be celebrated on the 2nd of November, the second month of autumn. [ Extracted from Ragon, Maconnerie Occulte. p.427, note.]
On the other hand the triangle, a purely geometrical figure, had great honour shewn it by every nation, and for this reason:
In geometry a straight line cannot represent an absolutely perfect figure, any more than two straight lines. Three straight lines, on the other hand, produce by their junction a triangle, or the first absolutely perfect figure. Therefore, it symbolized from the first and to this day the Eternal - the first perfection. The word for deity in Latin, as in French, begins with D, in Greek the delta or triangle Δ, whose three sides symbolize the trinity, or the three kingdoms, or, again, divine nature. In the middle is the Hebrew Yod, the initial of Jehovah [see Eliphas Levi’s Dogme et Rituel, i. 154], the animating spirit or fire, the generating principle represented by the letter G, the initial of “God” in the northern languages, whose philosophical significance is generation. [ Summarised from Ragon, ibid., p.428, note.]
stated correctly by the famous Mason Ragon, the Hindu Trimurti is personified
in the world of ideas by Creation, Preservation and Destruction, or Brahma,
Vishnu and Shiva; in the world of matter by Earth, Water and Fire, or the Sun,
and symbolised by the Lotus, a flower that lives by earth, water, and the sun.
[ Ragon mentions the curious fact that the first four numbers in German
are named after the elements.
“Ein, or one, means the air, the element which, ever in motion, penetrates matter throughout, and whose continual ebb and tide is the universal vehicle of life. “
Zwei, two, is derived from the old German Zweig, signifying germ, fecundity; it stands for earth the fecund mother of all. “
Drei, three is the trienos of the Greeks, standing for water, whence the Sea-gods, Tritons: and trident, the emblem of Neptune - the water, or sea, in general being called Amphitrite (surrounding water). “
Vier, four, a number meaning in Belgiam fire . . . It is in the quaternary that the first solid figure is found, the universal symbol of immortality, the Pyramid, ‘whose first syllable means fire.’ Lysis and Timaeus of Loeris claimed that there was not a thing one could name that had not the quaternary for its root. . . The ingenious and mystical idea which led to the veneration of the ternary and the triangle was applied to number four and its figure: it was said to express a living being, I, the vehicle of the triangle 4, vehicle of God, or man carrying in him the divine principle.”
Finally, “the Ancients represented the world by the number five. Diodorus explains it by saying that the number represents earth, fire, water, air and ether or spiritus. Hence, the origin of Pente (five) and of Pan (the God) meaning in Greek all.” (Compare Ragon. op. cit., pp. 428-430.) It is left with the Hindu Occultists to explain the relation this Sanskrit word Pancha (five) has to the elements, the Greek Pente having for its root the Sanskrit term.] The Lotus, sacred to Isis had the same significance in Egypt, whereas in the Christian symbol, the Lotus, not being found in either Judaea or Europe, was replaced by the water-lily.
The Universal Language - (Page 103) In every Greek and Latin Church, in all the pictures of the Annunciation, the Archangel Gabriel is depicted with this trinitarian symbol in his hand standing before Mary, while above the chief altar or under the dome, the Eye of the Eternal is painted within a triangle, made to replace the Hebrew Yod or God.
Truly, says Ragon, there was a time when numbers and alphabetical characters meant something more than they do now - the images of a mere insignificant sound.
Their mission was nobler then. Each of them represented by its form a complete sense, which, besides the meaning of the word, had a double [ The system of the so-called Senzar characters is still more wonderful and difficult, since each letter is made to yield several meanings, a sign placed at the commencement showing the true meaning.] interpretation adapted to a dual doctrine. Thus when the sages desired to write something to be understood only by the savants, they confabulated a story, a dream, or some other fictitious subject with personal names of men and localities, that revealed by their lettered characters the true meaning of the author by that narrative. Such were all their religious creations. [ Ragon, Op, cit., p.431, note.]
Every appellation and term had its raison d'être. The name of a plant or mineral denoted its nature to the Initiate at the first glance. The essence of everything was easily perceived by him once that it was figured by such characters. The Chinese characters have preserved much of this graphic and pictorial character to this day, though the secret of the full system is lost. Nevertheless, even now, there are those among that nation who can write a long narrative, a volume, on one page; and the symbols that are explained historically, allegorically and astronomically, have survived until now.
Moreover, there exists a universal language among the Initiates, which an Adept, and even a disciple, of any nation may understand by reading it in his own language. We Europeans, on the contrary, possess only one graphic sign common to all, & (and); there is a language richer in metaphysical terms than any on earth, whose every (Page 104) word is expressed by like common signs. The Litera Pythagorae, so called, the Greek Y (the English capital Y) if traced alone in a message, was as explicit as a whole page filled with sentences, for it stood as a symbol for a number of things - for white and black Magic, for instance. [ The Y exoterically signifies only the two paths of virtue of vice, and stands also for the numeral 150 and with a dash over the letter Y for 150.000.] Suppose one man enquired of another: To what School of Magic does so and so belong? And the answer came back with the letter traced with the right branch thicker than the left, then it meant “to right hand or divine Magic;” but if the letter was traced in the usual way, with the left branch thicker than the right, then it meant the reverse, the right or left branch being the whole biography of a man. In Asia, especially in the Devanâgarî characters, every letter had several secret meanings.
Interpretations of the hidden sense of such apocalyptic writings are found in the keys given in the Kabalah, and they are among its more secret lore. St. Hieronymus assures us that they were known to the School of the Prophets and taught therein, which is very likely. Molitor, the learned Hebraist, in his work on tradition says that:
The two and twenty letters of the Hebrew alphabet were regarded as an emanation, or the visible expression of the divine forces inherent in the ineffable name.
These letters find their equivalent in, and are replaced by numbers, in the same way as in the other systems. For instance, the twelfth and the sixth letter of the alphabet yield eighteen in a name; the other letter of that name added being always exchanged for that figure which corresponds to the alphabetical letter; then all those figures are subjected to an algebraical process which transforms them again into letters; after which the latter yield to the enquirer “the most hidden secrets of divine Permanency (eternity in its immutability) in the Futurity.”
The Hexagon with the Central Point, or The Seventh Key
That before the Name of Jesus every other Name must bend, why should not the Tetragrammaton have the same power? [ Tradition, chap, on “Numbers.”]
This is good sense and logic. For if Pythagoras viewed the hexagon formed of two crossed triangles as the symbol of creation, and the Egyptians, as that of the union of fire and water (or of generation), the Essenes saw in it the seal of Solomon, the Jews the Shield of David, the Hindus the sign of Vishnu (to this day); and if even in Russia and Poland the double triangle is regarded as a powerful talisman - then so widespread a use argues that there is something in it. It stands to reason, indeed, that such an ancient and universally revered symbol should not be merely laid aside to be laughed at by those who know nothing of its virtues or real Occult significance. To begin with, even the known sign is merely a substitute for the one used by the Initiates. In a Tântrika work in the British Museum, a terrible curse is called down upon the head of him who shall ever divulge to the profane the real Occult hexagon known as the “Sign of Vishnu,” “Solomon’s Seal,” etc.
The great power of the hexagon - with its central mystic sign the T, or the Svastika, a septenary - is well explained in the seventh key of Things Concealed, for it says
(Page 106) The seventh key is the hieroglyph of the sacred septenary, of royalty, of the priesthood [the Initiate], of triumph and true result by struggle. It is magic power in all its force, the true “Holy Kingdom.” In the Hermetic Philosophy it is the quintessence resulting from the union of the two forces of the great Magic Agent [Akâsha, Astral Light.] . . . It is equally Jakin and Boaz bound by the will of the Adept and overcome by his omnipotence.
The force of this key is absolute in Magic. All religions have consecrated this sign in their rites.
We can only glance hurriedly at present at the long series of antediluvian works in their postdiluvian and fragmentary, often disfigured, form. Although all of these are the inheritance from the Fourth Race - now lying buried in the unfathomed depths of the ocean - still they are not to be rejected. As we have shown, there was but one Science at the dawn of mankind, and it was entirely divine. If humanity on reaching its adult period has abused it - especially the last Sub-Races of the Fourth Root-Race - it has been the fault and sin of the practitioners who desecrated the divine knowledge, not of those who remained true to its pristine dogmas. It is not because the modern Roman Catholic Church, faithful to her traditional intolerance, is now pleased to see in the Occultist, and even in the innocent Spiritualist and Masons, the descendants of “the Kischuph, the Hamite, the Kasdim, the Cephene, the Ophite and the Khartumim” - all these being “the followers of Satan,” that they are such indeed. The State or National Religion of every country has ever and at all times very easily disposed of rival schools by professing to believe they were dangerous heresies - the old Roman Catholic State Religion as much as the modern one.
The anathema, however, has not made the public any the wiser in the Mysteries of the Occult Sciences. In some respects the world is all the better for such ignorance. The secrets of nature generally cut both ways, and in the hands of the undeserving they are more than likely to become murderous. Who in our modern day knows anything of the real significance of, and the powers contained in, certain characters and signs - talismans - whether for beneficent or evil purposes? Fragments of the Runes and the writing of the Kischuph, found scattered in old mediaeval libraries; copies from the Ephesian and Milesian letters or characters; the thrice famous Book of Thoth, and the terrible treatises (still preserved) of Targes, the Chaldaean, and his disciple Tarchon, the Etruscan - who flourished long before the Trojan War - are so many names and appellations void of sense (though met with in classical literature) for the educated modern scholar. Who, in the nineteenth century, believes in the art, described in such treatises as those of Targes, of evoking and directing thunderbolts?
Occult Weapons -
107) Yet the same is described in the Brâhmanical literature,
and Targes copied his “thunderbolts” from the Astra, [ This
is a kind of magical bow and arrow calculated to destroy in one moment whole
armies; it is mentioned in the Ramayana, the Puranas and elsewhere.]
those terrible engines of destruction known to the Mahabharatan Aryans. A
whole arsenal of dynamite bombs would pale before this art - if it ever becomes
understood by the Westerns. It is from an old fragment that was translated
to him, that the late Lord Bulwer Lytton got his idea of Vril. It is a lucky
thing, indeed, that, in the face of the virtues and philanthropy that grace
our age of iniquitous wars, of anarchists and dynamiters, the secrets contained
in the books discovered in Numa’s tomb should have been burnt. But the
science of Circe and Medea is not lost. One can discover it in the apparent
gibberish of the Tantrika Sutras, the Kuku-ma of the Bhutani and the
Sikhim Dugpas and “Red-caps” of Tibet, and even in the sorcery
of the Nilgiri Mula Kurumbas. Very luckily few outside the high practioners
of the Left Path and of the Adepts of the Right - in whose hands the weird
secrets of the real meaning are safe - understand the “black”
evocations. Otherwise the Western as much as the Eastern Dugpas might make
short work of their enemies. The name of the latter is legion, for the direct
descendants of the antediluvian sorcerers hate all those who are not with
them, arguing that, therefore, they are against them.
People are very apt to use terms which they do not understand, and to pass judgments on prima facie evidence. The difference between White and Black Magic is very difficult to realise fully, as both have to be judged by their motive, upon which their ultimate though not their immediate effects depend, even though these may not come for years. Between the “right and the left hand [Magic] there is but a cobweb thread,” says an Eastern proverb. Let us abide by its wisdom and wait till we have learned more.
The Duty of the True Occultist Toward Religions
(Page 109) HAVING disposed of pre-Christian Initiates and their Mysteries - though more has to be said about the latter - a few words must be given to the earliest post-Christian Adepts, irrespective of their personal belief and doctrines, or their subsequent places in History, whether sacred or profane. Our task is to analyse this adeptship with its abnormal thaumaturgical, or, as now called, psychological powers; to give each of such Adepts his due, by considering, firstly, what are the historical records about them that have reached us at this late day and secondly, to examine the laws of probability with regard to the said powers.
And at the outset the writer must be allowed a few words in justification of what has to be said. It would be most unfair to see in these pages, any defiance to, or disrespect for, the Christian religion - least of all, a desire to wound anyone’s feelings. The Theosophist believes in neither Divine nor Satanic miracles. At such a distance of time he can only obtain prima facie evidence and judge of it by the results claimed. There is neither Saint nor Sorcerer, Prophet nor Soothsayer for him; only Adepts, or proficients in the production of feats of a phenomenal character, to be judged by their words and deeds. The only distinction he is now able to trace depends on the results achieved - on the evidence whether they were beneficent or maleficent in their character as affecting those for or against whom the powers of the Adept were used. With the division so arbitrarily made between proficients in “miraculous” doings of this or that Religion by their respective followers and advocates, the Occultist cannot and must not be concerned. The Christian whose Religion commands (Page 110) him to regard Peter and Paul as Saints, and divinely inspired and glorified Apostles, and to view Simon and Apollonius as Wizards and Necromancers, helped by, and serving the ends of, supposed Evil Powers - is quite justified in thus doing if he be a sincere orthodox Christian. But so also is the Occultist justified, if he would serve truth and only truth, in rejecting such a one-sided view. The student of Occultism must belong to no special creed or sect, yet he is bound to show outward respect to every creed and faith, if he would become an Adept of the Good Law. He must not be bound by the prejudged and sectarian opinions of anyone, and he has to form his own opinions and to come to his own conclusions in accordance with the rules of evidence furnished to him by the Science to which he is devoted. Thus, if the Occultist is, by way of illustration, a Buddhist, then, while regarding Gautama Buddha as the grandest of all the Adepts that lived, and the incarnation of unselfish love, boundless charity, and moral goodness, he will regard in the same light Jesus - proclaiming Him another such incarnation of every divine virtue. He will reverence the memory of the great Martyr, even while refusing to recognise in Him the incarnation on earth of the One Supreme Deity, and the “Very God of Gods” in Heaven. He will cherish the ideal man for his personal virtues, not for the claims made on his behalf by fanatical dreamers of the early ages, or by a shrewd calculating Church and Theology. He will even believe in most of the “assorted miracles,” only explaining them in accordance with the rules of his own Science and by his psychic discernment. Refusing them the term “miracle” - in the theological sense of an event “contrary to the established laws of nature’ - he will nevertheless view them as a deviation from the laws known (so far) to Science, quite another thing. Moreover the Occultist will, on the prima facie evidence of the Gospels - whether proven or not - class most of such works as beneficent, divine Magic, though he will be justified in regarding such events as casting out devils into a herd of swine [ Matthew, viii. 30-34.] as allegorical, and as pernicious to true faith in their dead-letter sense. This is the view a genuine, impartial Occultist would take. And in this respect even the fanatical Mussulmans who regard Jesus of Nazareth as a great Prophet, and show respect to Him, are giving a wholesome lesson in charity to Christians, who teach and accept that “religious tolerance is impious and absurd,” [ Dogmatic Theology, iii. 345.] and who will never refer to the prophet of Islam by any other term but that of a “false prophet.”
Christian and Non-Christian Adepts - (Page 111) It is on the principles of Occultism, then, that Peter and Simon, Paul and Apollonius, will now be examined.
These four Adepts are chosen to appear in these pages with good reason. They are the first in post-Christian Adeptship - as recorded in profane and sacred writings - to strike the key-note of “miracles,” that is of psychic and physical phenomena. It is only theological bigotry and intolerance that could so maliciously and arbitrarily separate the two harmonious parts into two distinct manifestations of Divine and Satanic Magic, into “godly” and “ungodly” works.
Post-Christian Adepts and Their Doctrines
(Page 112) WHAT does the world at large know of Peter and Simon, for example? Profane history has no record of these two, while that which the so-called sacred literature tells us of them is scattered about, contained in a few sentences in the Acts. As to the Apocrypha, their very name forbids critics to trust to them for information. The Occultists, however claim that, one-sided and prejudiced as they may be, the apocryphal Gospels contain far more historically true events and facts than does the New Testament, the Acts included. The former are crude tradition, the latter [the official Gospels] are an elaborately made up legend. The sacredness of the New Testament is a question of private belief and of blind faith, and while one is bound to respect the private opinion of one’s neighbour, no one is forced to share it.
Who was Simon Magus, and what is known of him? One learns in the Acts simply that on account of his remarkable magical Arts he was called “the Great Power of God.” Philip is said to have baptised this Samaritan; and subsequently he is accused of having offered money to Peter and John to teach him the power of working true “miracles,” false ones, it is asserted, being of the Devil [ viii. 9, 10.] This is all, if we omit the words of abuse freely used against him for working “miracles” of the latter kind. Origen mentions him as having visited Rome during the reign of Nero, [ Adv. Celsum.] and Mosheim places him along the open enemies of Christianity; [ Eccles. Hist., i. 140.] but Occult tradition accuses him of nothing worse than refusing to recognise “Simeon” as Vicegerent of God, whether that “Simeon” was Peter or anyone else being still left an open question with the critics.
Unfair Criticism - (Page 113) That which Irenaeus [Contra Haereses, 1. xxiii. 1-4.] and Epiphanius [ Comtra Haereses, ii, 1-6.] say of Simon Magus - namely, that he represented himself as the incarnated trinity; that in Samaria he was the Father, in Judaea the Son, and had given himself out to the Gentiles as the Holy Spirit - is simply backbiting. Times and events change; human nature remains the same and unaltered under every sky and in every age. The charge is the result and product of the traditional and now classical odium theologicum. No Occultists - all of whom have experienced personally, more or less, the effects of theological rancour - will ever believe such things merely on the word of an Irenaeus, if, indeed, he ever wrote the words himself. Further on it is narrated of Simon that he took about with him a woman whom he introduced as Helen of Troy, who had passed through a hundred reincarnations, and who, still earlier, in the beginning of aeons, was Sophia, Divine Wisdom, an emanation of his own (Simon’s) Eternal Mind, when he (Simon) was the “Father”; and finally that by her he had “begotten the Archangels and Angels, by whom this world was created,” etc.
Now we all know to what a degree of transformation and luxuriant growth any bare statement can be subjected and forced, after passing through only half a dozen hands. Moreover, all these claims may be explained and even shown to be true at bottom, Simon Magus was a Kabalist and a Mystic, who, like so many other reformers, endeavoured to found a new Religion based on the fundamental teachings of the Secret Doctrine, yet without divulging more than necessary of its mysteries. Why then should not Simon, a Mystic, deeply imbued with the fact of serial incarnations (we may leave out the number “one hundred,” as a very probable exaggeration of his disciples), speak of any one whom he knew psychically as an incarnation of some heroine of that name, and in the way he did - if he ever did so? Do we not find in our own century some ladies and gentlemen, not charlatans but intellectual persons highly honoured in society, whose inner conviction assures them that they were - one Queen Cleopatra, another one Alexander the Great, a third Joan of Arc, and who or what not? This is a matter of inner conviction, and is based on more or less familiarity with Occultism and belief in the modern theory of reincarnation. The latter differs from the one genuine doctrine of old, as will be shown, but there is no rule without its exception.
(Page 114) As to the Magus being “one with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost,” this again is quite reasonable, if we admit that a Mystic and Seer has a right to use allegorical language; and in this case, moreover, it is quite justified by the doctrine of Universal Unity taught in Esoteric Philosophy. Every Occultist will say the same, on (to him) scientific and logical grounds, in full accordance with the doctrine he professes. Not a Vedantin but says the same thing daily: he is, of course Brahman, and he is Parabrahman, once that he rejects the individuality of his personal spirit, and recognizes the Divine Ray which dwells in his Higher Self as only a reflection of the Universal Spirit. This is the echo in all times and ages of the primitive doctrine of Emanations. The first Emanation from the Unknown is the “Father,[ Op cit., ii.337.] the second the “Son,” and all and everything proceeds from the One, or that Divine Spirit which is “unknowable. Hence, the assertion that by her (Sophia, or Minerva, the Divine Wisdom) he (Simon), when yet in the bosom of the Father, himself the Father (or the first collective Emanation), begot the Archangels - the “Son” - who were the creators of this world.
The Roman Catholics themselves, driven to the wall by the irrefutable arguments of their opponents - the learned Philologists and Symbologists who pick to shreds Church dogmas and their authorities, and point out the plurality of the Elohim in the Bible - admit today that the first “creation” of God, the Tsaba, or Archangels, must have participated in the creation of the universe. Might not we suppose:
Although “God alone created the heaven and the earth” . . .that however unconnected they [the angels] may have been with the primordial ex nihilo creation, they may have received a mission to achieve, to continue, and to sustain it?[ Op cit., ii.337.]
exclaims De Mirville, in answer to Renan, Lacour, Maury and the tutti quanti of the French Institute. With certain alterations it is precisely this which is claimed by the Secret Doctrine. In truth there is not a single doctrine preached by the many Reformers of the first and the subsequent centuries of our era, that did not base its initial teachings on this universal cosmogony. Consult Mosheim and see what he has to say of the many “heresies” he describes. Cerinthus, the Jew,
Taught that the Creator of this world . . . the Sovereign God of the Jewish people, was a Being . . . who derived his birth from the Supreme God;
that this Being, moreover ,
Fell by degrees from his native virtue and primitive dignity.
The Two Eternal Principles - (Page 115) Basildes, Carpocrates and Valentinus, the Egyptian Gnostics of the second century, held the same ideas with a few variations. Basilides preached seven Aeons (Hosts or Archangels), who issued from the substance of the Supreme. Two of them, Power and Wisdom, begot the heavenly hierarchy of the first class and dignity; this emanated a second; the latter a third, and so on; each subsequent evolution being of a nature less exalted than the precedent, and each creating for itself a Heaven as a dwelling, the nature of each of these respective Heavens decreasing in splendour and purity as it approached nearer to the earth. Thus the number of these Dwellings amounted to 365; and over all presided the Supreme Unknown called Abraxas, a name which in the Greek method of numeration yields the number 365, which in its mystic and numerical meaning contains the number 355, or the man value [ Ten is the perfect number of the Supreme God among the “manifested” deities, for number "I"is the symbol of the Universal Unit, or male principle in Nature, and a number "0" the feminine symbol Chaos, the Deep, the two forming thus the symbol of Androgyne nature as well as the full value of the solar year, which was also the value of Jehovah and Enoch. Ten, with Pythagoras, was the symbol of the Universe; also of Enos, the Son of Seth, or the “Son of Man” who stands as the symbol of the solar year of 365 days, and whose years are therefore given as 365 also. In the Egyptian Symbology Abraxas was the Sun, the “Lord of the Heavens.” The Circle is the symbol of the one Unmanifesting Principle, the plane of whose figure is infinitude eternally, and this is crossed by a diameter only during Manvantaras.] This was a Gnostic Mystery based upon that of primitive Evolution, which ended with “man.”
Saturnilus of Antioch promulgated the same doctrine slightly modified. He taught two eternal principles, Good and Evil, which are simply Spirit and Matter. The seven Angels who preside over the seven Planets are the Builders of our Universe - a purely Eastern doctrine, as Saturnilus was an Asiatic Gnostic. These Angels are the natural Guardians of the seven Regions of our Planetary System, one of the most powerful among these seven creating Angels of the third order being “Saturn,” the presiding genius of the Planet, and the God of the Hebrew people: namely, Jehovah, who was venerated among the Jews, and to whom they dedicated the seventh day or Sabbath, Saturday - “Saturn’s day” among the Scandinavians and also among the Hindus.
Marcion, who also held the doctrine of the two opposed principles of Good and Evil, asserted that there was a third Deity between the two - one of a “mixed nature” - the God of the Jews, the Creator (with his Host) of the lower, or our, World. Though ever at war with the Evil (Page 116) Principle, this intermediate Being was nevertheless also opposed to the Good Principle, whose place and title he coveted.
Thus Simon was only the son of his time, a religious Reformer like so many others, and an Adept among the Kabalists. The Church, to which a belief in his actual existence and great powers is a necessity - in order the better to set off the “miracle” performed by Peter and his triumph over Simon - extols unstintingly his wonderful magic feats. On the other hand, Scepticism, represented by scholars and learned critics, tries to make away with him altogether. Thus, after denying the very existence of Simon, they have finally thought fit to merge his individuality entirely in that of Paul. The anonymous author of Supernatural Religion assiduously endeavoured to prove that by Simon Magus we must understand the Apostle Paul, whose Epistles were secretly as well as openly calumniated and opposed by Peter, and charged with containing “dysnoetic learning.” Indeed this seems more than probable when we think of the two Apostles and contrast their characters.
The Apostle of the Gentiles was brave, outspoken, sincere, and very learned; the Apostle of Circumcision, cowardly, cautious, insincere, and very ignorant. That Paul had been, partially at least, if not completely, initiated into the theurgic mysteries, admits of little doubt. His language, the phraseology so peculiar to the Greek philosophers, certain expressions used only by the Initiates, are so many sure earmarks to that supposition. Our suspicion has been strengthened by an able article entitled “Paul and Plato,” by Dr. A. Wilder, in which the author puts forward one remarkable and, for us, very precious observation. In the Epistles to the Corinthians, he shows Paul abounding with “expressions suggested by the initiations of Sabazius and Eleusis, and the lectures of the (Greek) philosophers. He (Paul) designates himself as idiotes - a person unskilful in the Word, but not in the gnosis or philosophical learning. ‘We speak wisdom among the perfect or initiated,’ he writes, even the hidden wisdom, ‘not the wisdom of this world, nor of the Archons of this world, but divine wisdom in a mystery, secret - which none of the Archons of this world knew.’”[ I. Cor.,ii. 6-8.]
What else can the Apostle mean by those unequivocal words, but that he himself, as belonging to the Mystae (Initiated), spoke of things shown and explained only in the Mysteries? The “divine wisdom in a mystery which none of the Archons of this world knew,” has evidently some direct reference to the Basileus of the Eleusinian Initiation who did know. The Basileus belonged to the staff of the great Hierophant, and was an Archon of Athens, and as such was one of the chief Mystae, belonging to the interior Mysteries, to which a very select and small number obtained an entrance.[ Compare Taylor’s Eleusinian and Bacchic Mysteries.] The magistrates supervising the Eleusinia were called Archons. [ Isis Unveiled., ii. 89.]
We will deal, however, first with Simon the Magician.
Simon and His Biographer Hippolytus
(Page 117) AS shown in our earlier volumes, Simon was a pupil of the Tanaim of Samaria, and the reputation he left behind him, together with the title of “the Great Power of God,” testify in favour of the ability and learning of his Masters. But the Tanaim were Kabalists of the same secret school as John of the Apocalypse, whose careful aim it was to conceal as much as possible the real meaning of the names in the Mosiac Books. Still the calumnies so jealously disseminated against Simon Magus by the unknown authors and compilers of the Acts and other writings, could not cripple the truth to such an extent as to conceal the fact that no Christian could rival him in thaumaturgic deeds. The story told about his falling during an aerial flight, breaking both his legs and then committing suicide, is ridiculous. Posterity has heard but one side of the story. Were the disciples of Simon to have a chance, we might perhaps find that it was Peter who broke his legs. But as against this hypothesis we know that this Apostle was too prudent ever to venture himself in Rome. On the confession of several ecclesiastical writers, no Apostle ever performed such “supernatural wonders,” but of course pious people will say this only the more proves that it was the Devil who worked through Simon. He was accused of blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, only because he introduced as the “Holy Spiritus” the Men's (Intelligence) or “the Mother of all.” But we find the same expression used in the Book of Enoch, in which, in contradistinction to the “Son of Man,” he speaks of the “Son of the Woman.” In the Codex of the Nazarenes, and in the Zohar, as well as in the Books of Hermes, the same expression is used; and even in the apocryphal Evangelium of the Hebrews we read that Jesus admitted the female sex of the Holy Ghost by using the expression “My Mother, the Holy Pneuma.”
(Page 118) After long ages of denial, however, the actual existence of Simon Magus has been finally demonstrated, whether he was Saul, Paul or Simon. A manuscript speaking of him under the last name has been discovered in Greece and has put a stop to any further speculation.
In his Histoire des Trois Premiers Siecles de L’Eglise, [ Op. cit., ii. 395.] M. de Pressensé gives his opinion on this additional relic of early Christianity. Owing to the numerous myths with which the history of Simon abounds - he says - many Theologians (among Protestants, he ought to have added) have concluded that it was no better than a clever tissue of legends. But he adds:
It contains positive facts, it seems, now warranted by the unanimous testimony of the Fathers of the Church and the narrative of Hippolytus recently discovered. [ Quoted by De Mirville. Op cit., vi. 41 and 42.]
This MS. is very far from being complimentary to the alleged founder of Western Gnosticism. While recognizing great powers in Simon, it brands him as a priest of Satan - which is quite enough to show that it was written by a Christian. It also shows that, like another servant, “of the Evil One” - as Manes is called by the Church - Simon was a baptised Christian; but that both, being too well versed in the mysteries of true primitive Christianity, were persecuted for it. The secret of such persecution was then, as it is now, quite transparent to those who study the question impartially. Seeking to preserve his independence, Simon could not submit to the leadership or authority of any of the Apostles, least of all to that of either Peter or John, the fanatical author of the Apocalypse. Hence charges of heresy followed by “anathema maranatha.” The persecutions by the Church were never directed against Magic, when it was orthodox; for the new Theurgy, established and regulated by the Fathers, now known to Christendom as “grace” and “miracles,” was, and is still, when it does happen, only Magic - whether conscious or unconscious. Such phenomena as have passed to posterity under the name of “divine miracles” were produced though powers acquired by great purity of life and ecstacy. Prayer and contemplation added to asceticism are the best means of discipline in order to become a Theurgist, where there is no regular initiation. For intense prayer for the accomplishment of some object is only intense will and desire, resulting in unconscious Magic. In our own day George Muller of Bristol has proved it. But “divine miracles” are produced by the same causes that generate effects of Sorcery.
Balances - (Page
119) The whole difference rests on the good or evil effects aimed
at, and on the actor who produces them. The thunders of the Church were directed
only against those who dissented from the formulae and attributed to themselves
the production of certain marvellous effects, instead of fathering them on a
personal God; and thus while those Adepts in Magic Arts who acted under her
direct instructions and auspices were proclaimed to posterity and history as
saints and friends of God, all others were hooted out of the Church and sentenced
to eternal calumny and curses from their day to this. Dogma and authority have
ever been the curse of humanity, the great extinguishers of light and truth.
[ Mr. St.George Lane-Fox has admirably expressed the idea in his eloquent
appeal to the many rival schools and societies in India. “I feel sure,”
he said, “ that the prime motive, however dimly perceived, by which you,
as the promoters of these movements, were actuated, was a revolt against the
tyrannical and almost universal establishment throughout all existing social
and so-called religious institutions of a usurped authority in some external
form supplanting and obscuring the only real and ultimate authority, the indwelling
spirit of truth revealed to each individual soul, true conscience in fact, that
supreme source of all human wisdom and power which elevates man above the level
of the brute.” (To the Members of the Aryan Samâj, the Theosophical
Society, Brahmo and Hindu Samaj and other Religious and Progressive Societies
It was perhaps the recognition of a germ of that which, later on, in the then nascent Church, grew into the virus of insatiate power and ambition, culminating finally in the dogma of infallibility, that forced Simon, and so many others, to break away from her at her very birth. Sects and dissensions began with the first century. While Paul rebukes Peter to his face, John slanders under the veil of vision the Nicolaitans, and makes Jesus declare that he hates them. [ Revelation, ii.6.] Therefore we pay little attention to the accusations against Simon in the MS. found in Greece.
It is entitled Philosophumena. Its author, regarded as Saint Hippolytus by the Greek Church, is referred to as an “unknown heretic” by the Papists, only because he speaks in it “very slanderously” of Pope Callistus, also a Saint. Nevertheless, Greeks and Latins agree in declaring the Philosophumena to be an extraordinary and very erudite work. Its antiquity and genuineness have been vouched for by the best authorities of Tubingen.
Whoever the author may have been, he expresses himself about Simon in this wise:
Simon, a man well versed in magic arts, deceived many persons partly by the (Page 120) art of Thrasymedes,[ This “art” is not common jugglery, as some define it now: it’s a kind of psychological jugglery, if jugglery at all, where fascination and glamour are used as means of producing illusions. It is hypnotism on a large scale.] and partly with the help of demons.[ The author asserts in this his Christian persuasion.] . . . He determined to pass himself off as a god. . . Aided by his wicked arts, he turned to profit not only the teachings of Moses, but those of the poets . . . His disciples use to this day his charms. Thanks to incantations, to philtres, to their attractive caresses [ Magnetic passes, evidently, followed by a trance and sleep.] and what they call “sleeps,” they send demons to influence all those whom they would fascinate. With this object they employ what they call “familiar demons.” [ “Elementals” used by the highest Adept to do mechanical, not intellectual work, as a physicist uses gases and other compounds.]
Further on the MS. reads:
The Magus (Simon) made those who wished to enquire of the demon, write what their question was on a leaf of parchment; this, folded in four, was thrown into a burning brazier, in order that the smoke should reveal the contents of the writing to the Spirit (demon) (Philos., IV. IV.) Incense was thrown by handfuls on the blazing coals, the Magus adding, on pieces of papyrus, the Hebrew names of the Spirits he was addressing, and the flame devoured all. Very soon the divine Spirit seemed to overwhelm the Magician, who uttered unintelligible invocations, and plunged in such a state he answered every question - phantasmal apparitions being often raised over the flaming brazier (ibid., iii.); at other times fire descended from heaven upon objects previously pointed out by the Magician (ibid.); or again the deity evoked, crossing the room, would trace fiery orbs in its flight. (ibid., ix.). [ Quoted from De Mirville. op.cit.,vi.43.]
So far the above statements agree with those of Anastasius the Sinaïte:
People saw Simon causing statues to walk; precipitating himself into the flames without being burnt; metamorphosing his body into that of various animals [lycanthropy]; raising at banquets phantoms and spectres; causing the furniture in the rooms to move about, by invisible spirits. He gave out that he was escorted by a number of shades to whom he gave the name of “souls of the dead.” Finally, he used to fly in the air . . . (Anast., Patrol, Grecque, vol. lxxxix., col. 523, quaest. xx.).[ Ibid.,vi.45.]
Suetonius says in his Nero,
In those days an Icarus fell at his first ascent near Nero’s box and covered it with his blood. [ Ibid., p.46.]
This sentence, referring evidently to some unfortunate acrobat who missed his footing and tumbled, is brought forward as a proof that it was Simon who fell.[ Amédée Fleury. Rapports de St.Paul avec Sénèque. ii. 100. The whole of this is summarised from De Mirville.]
Stones as “Evidences.” - (Page 121) But the latter’s name is surely too famous, if one must credit the Church Fathers, for the historian to have mentioned him simply as “an Icarus.” The writer is quite aware that there exists in Rome a locality names Simonium, near the Church of SS. Cosmas and Daimanus (Via Sacra), and the ruins of the ancient temple of Romulus, where the broken pieces of a stone, on which it is alleged the two knees of the Apostle Peter were impressed in thanksgiving after his supposed victory over Simon, are shown to this day. But what does this exhibition amount to? For the broken fragments of one stone, the Buddhists of Ceylon show a whole rock on Adam’s Peak with another imprint upon it. A crag stands upon its platform, a terrace of which supports a huge boulder, and on the boulder rests for nearly three thousand years the sacred footprint of a foot five feet long. Why not credit the legend of the latter, if we have to accept that of St.Peter? “Prince of Apostles,” or “Prince of Reformers,” or even the “First-born of Satan,” as Simon is called, all are entitled to legends and fictions. One may be allowed to discriminate, however.
That Simon could fly, i.e., raise himself in the air for a few minutes, is no impossibility. Modern mediums have performed the same feat supported by a force that Spiritualists persist in calling “spirits.” But if Simon did so, it was with the help of a self-acquired blind power that heeds little the prayers and commands of rival Adepts, let alone Saints. The fact is that logic is against the supposed fall of Simon at the prayer of Peter. For had he been defeated publicly by the Apostle, his disciples would have abandoned him after such an evident sign of inferiority, and would have become orthodox Christians. But we find even the author of Philosophumena, just such a Christian, showing otherwise. Simon had lost so little credit with his pupils and the masses, that he went on daily preaching in the Roman Campania after his supposed fall from the clouds “far above the Capitolium,” in which fall he broke his legs only! Such a lucky fall is in itself sufficiently miraculous, one would say.
St. Paul the Real Founder of Present Christianity
(Page 122) We may repeat with the author of Phallicism:
We are all for construction - even for Christian, although of course philosophical construction. We have nothing to do with reality, in man’s limited, mechanical, scientific sense, or with realism. We have undertaken to show that mysticism is the very life and soul of religion; [ But we can never agree with the author “that rites and ritual and formal worship and prayers are of absolute necessity of things,” for the external can develop and grow and receive worship only at the expense of, and to the detriment of, the internal, the only real and true.] . . . that the Bible is only misread and misrepresented when rejected as advancing supposed fabulous and contradictory things; that Moses did not make mistakes, but spoke to the “children of men” in the only way in which children in their nonage can be addressed; that the world is indeed, a very different place from that which it is assumed to be; that what is derided as superstition is the only true and the only scientific knowledge, and moreover that modern knowledge and modern science are to a great extent not only superstition, but superstition of a very destructive and deadly kind.[ H. Jennings, op. cit., pp.37.38.]
All this is perfectly true and correct. But it is also true that the New Testament, the Acts and the Epistles - however much the historical figure of Jesus may be true - all are symbolical and allegorical sayings, and that “it was not Jesus but Paul who was the real founder of Christianity;” [ See Isis Unveiled, ii.574.] but it was not the official Church Christianity, at any rate. “The disciples were called Christians first in Antioch,” the Acts of the Apostles tell us, [ xi. 26.] and they were not so called before, nor for a long time after, but simply Nazarenes.
This view is found in more than one writer of the present and the past centuries. But, hitherto, it has always been laid aside as an unproven hypothesis, a blasphemous assumption; though, as the author of Paul, the Founder of Christianity [ Art, by Dr. A. Wilder, in Evolution.] truly says:
Abrogation of Law by Initiates -
(Page 123) Such men as Irenaeus, Epiphanius and Eusebius have transmitted to posterity a reputation for such untruth and dishonest practices that the heart sickens at the story of the crimes of that period.
The more so, since the whole Christian scheme rests upon their sayings. But we find now another corroboration, and this time on the perfect reading of biblical glyphs. In The Source of Measures we find the following:
It must be borne in mind that our present Christianity is Pauline, not Jesus. Jesus, in his life, was a Jew, conforming to the law; even more, He says: “The scribes and pharisees sit in Moses’ seat; whatsoever therefore they command you to do, that observe and do.” And again: “I did not come to destroy but to fulfil the law,” Therefore, he was under the law to the day of his death, and could not, while in life, abrogate one jot or title of it. He was circumcised and commanded circumcision. But Paul said of circumcision that it availed nothing, and he (Paul) abrogated the law. Saul and Paul - that is, Saul, under the law, and Paul, freed from the obligations of the law - were in one man, but parallelisms in the flesh, of Jesus the man under the law as observing it, who thus died in Chrestos and arose, freed from its obligations, in the spirit world as Christos, or the triumphant Christ. It was the Christ who was freed, but Christ was the Spirit. Saul in the flesh was the function of, and parallel of Chrestos. Paul in the flesh was the function and parallel of Jesus become Christ in the spirit, as an early reality to answer to and act for the apotheosis; and so armed with all authority in the flesh to abrogate human law. [ Op. cit.,p.262.]
The real reason why Paul is shown as “abrogating the law” can be found only in India, where to this day the most ancient customs and privileges are preserved in all their purity, notwithstanding the abuse levelled at the same. There is only one class of persons who can disregard the law of Brâhmanical institutions, caste included, with impunity, and that is the perfect “Svâmis,” the Yogis - who have reached, or are supposed to have reached, the first step towards the Jivanmukta state - or the full Initiates. And Paul was undeniably an Initiate. We will quote a passage or two from Iris Unveiled, for we can say now nothing better than what was said then:
Take Paul, read the little of original that is left of him in the writings attributed to this brave, honest, sincere man, and see whether anyone can find a word therein to show that Paul meant by the word Christ anything more than the abstract ideal of the personal divinity indwelling in man. For Paul, Christ is not a person, but (Page 124) an embodied idea. “ If any man is in Christ he is a new creation,” he is reborn, as after initiation, for the Lord is spirit - the spirit of man. Paul was the only one of the apostles who had understood the secret ideas underlying the teachings of Jesus, although he had never met him.
But Paul himself was not infallible or perfect.
Bent upon inaugurating a new and broad reform, one embracing the whole of humanity, he sincerely set his own doctrines far above the wisdom of the ages, above the ancient Mysteries and final revelation to the Epoptae.
Another proof that Paul belonged to the circle of the “Initiates” lies in the following fact. The apostle had his head shorn at Cenchreae, where Lucius (Apuleius) was initiated, because “he had a vow.” The Nazars - or set apart - as we see in the Jewish Scriptures, had to cut their hair, which they wore long, and which “no razor touched” at any other time, and sacrifice it on the altar of initiation. And the Nazars were a class of Chaldaean Theurgists or Initiates.
It is shown in Isis Unveiled that Jesus belonged to this class.
Paul declares that: “According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise master-builder, I have laid the foundation.” ( 1. Corinth., iii. 10.)
The expression, master-builder, used only once in the whole Bible, and by Paul, may be considered as a whole revelation. In the Mysteries, the third part of the sacred rites was called Epoteia, or revelation, reception into the secrets. In substance it means the highest stage of clairvoyance - the diviner; . . . but the real significance of the word is “overseeing,” from “σπτομαι-“ I see myself.” In Sanskrit the root âp had the same meaning originally, though now it is understood as meaning “to obtain.” [ In its most extensive meaning, the Sanskrit word has the same literal sense as the Greek term: both imply “revelation,” by no human agent, but through the “receiving of the sacred drink.” In India the initiated receive the “Soma,” sacred drink, which helped to liberate his soul from the body: and in the Eleusinian Mysteries it was the sacred drink offered at the Epopteia. The Grecian Mysteries are wholly derived from the Brahmanical Vaidic rites, and the latter from the Ante-Vaidic religious Mysteries - primitive Wisdom Philosophy.]
The word epopteia is compound from ‘επι’ “upon,” and “σπτομαι-“ ”to look,” or an overseer, an inspector - also used for a master-builder. The title of master-mason, in Freemasonry, is derived from this, in the sense used in the Mysteries. Therefore, when Paul entitles himself a “master-builder,” he is using a word pre-eminently kabalistic, theurgic, and masonic, and one which no other apostle uses. He thus declares himself an adept, having the right to initiate others.
If we search in this direction, with those sure guides, the Grecian Mysteries and the Kabalah, before us, it will be easy to find the secret reason why Paul was so persecuted and hated by Peter, John, and James. The author of the Revelation was a Jewish Kabalist, pur sang, with all the hatred inherited by him from his forefathers toward the Pagan Mysteries. [ It is needless to state that the Gospel according to John was not written by John, but by a Platonist or a Gnostic belonging to the Neoplatonic school.] His jealousy during the life of Jesus extended even to Peter; and it is but after the death of their common master that we see the two apostles - the former of whom wore the Mitre and the Petaloon of the Jewish Rabbis - preach so zealously the rite of circumcision.
Paul Changed to Simon - (Page 125) In the eyes of Peter, Paul, who had humiliated him, and whom he felt so much his superior in “Greek learning” and philosophy, must have naturally appeared as a magician, a man polluted with the “Gnosis,” with the “wisdom” of the Greek Mysteries - hence, perhaps, “Simon the Magician” as a comparison, not a nickname. [ Ibid.,loc. cit. The fact that Peter persecuted the “Apostle of the Gentiles” under that name, does not necessarily imply that there was no Simon Magus individually distinct from Paul. It may have become a generic name of abuse. Theodoret and Chrysostom, the earliest and most prolific commentators on the Gnosticism of those days, seem actually to make of Simon a rival of Paul and to state that between them passed frequent messages. The former, as a diligent propagandist of what Paul terms the “antithesis of the Gnosis” (I Epistle to Timothy), must have been a sore thorn in the side of the apostle. There are sufficient proofs of the actual existence of Simon Magus.]
Peter a Jewish Kabalist, Not an Initiate
In the Oriental countries the designation Peter (in Phoenician and Chaldaic an interpreter), appears to have been the title of this personage. [ Taylor’s Eleusinian and Bacchic Mysteries, Wilder’s ed., p. x.]
So far, and as the “interpreters” of Neo-Christianism, the Popes have most undeniably the right to call themselves successors to the title of Peter, but hardly the successors to, least of all the interpreters of, the doctrines of Jesus, the Christ; for there is the Oriental Church, older and far purer than the Roman hierarchy, which, having ever faithfully held to the primitive teachings of the Apostles, is known historically to have refused to follow the Latin seceders from the original Apostolic Church, though, curiously enough, she is still referred to by her Roman sister as the “Schismatic” Church. It is useless to repeat the reasons for the statements above made, as they may all be found in Isis Unveiled, [ ii.91-94.] where the words, Peter, Patar, and Pitar, are explained, and the origin of the “Seat of Pitah” is shown. The reader will find upon referring to the above pages that an inscription was found on the coffin of Queen Mentuhept of the Eleventh Dynasty (2250 B.C. according to Bunsen), which in its turn was shown to have been transcribed from the Seventeenth Chapter of the Book of the Dead, dating certainly not later than 4500 B.C. or 496 years before the World’s Creation, in the Genesiacal chronology.
The Seat of Peter - (Page 127) Nevertheless, Baron Bunsen shows the group of the hieroglyphics given (Peter-ref-su, the “Mystery Word”) and the sacred formulary mixed up with a whole series of glosses and various interpretations on a monument 4,000 years old.
This is identical with saying that the record (the true interpretation) was at that time no longer intelligible . . . We beg our readers to understand that a sacred text, a hymn, containing the words of a departed spirit, existed in such a state, about 4.000 years ago, as to be all but unintelligible to royal scribes. [ Bunsen, Egypt’s Place in History. v.90.]
“Unintelligible” to the non-initiated - this is certain; and it is so proved by the confused and contradictory glosses. Yet there can be no doubt that it was - for it still is - a mystery word. The Baron further explains:
It appears to me that our PTR is literally the old Aramaic and Hebrew “Patar,” which occurs in the history of Joseph as the specific word for interpreting, whence also Pitrum is the term for interpretation of a text, a dream.
This word, PTR, was partially interpreted owing to another word similarly written in another group of hieroglyphics, on a stele, the glyph used for it being an opened eye, interpreted by De Rougé [ Stele, p.44.] as “to appear,” and by Bunsen as “illuminator,” which is more correct. However, it may be, the word Patar, or Peter, would locate both master and disciple in the circle of initiation, and connect them with the Secret Doctrine; while in the “Seat of Peter” we can hardly help seeing a connection with Petroma, the double set of stone tablets used by the Hierophant at the Supreme Initiation during the final Mystery, as already stated, also with the Pitha-sthâna (seat, or the place of a seat), a term used in the Mysteries of the Tantriks in India, in which the limbs of the Satî are scattered and then united again, as those of Osiris by Isis. [ See Dowson’s Hindu Classical Dict., sub voc., “Pitha-sthânam.”] Pitha is a Sanskrit word, and is also used to designate the seat of the initiating Lama.
Whether all the above terms are due simply to “coincidences” or otherwise is left to the decision of our learned Symbologists and Philologists. We state facts - and nothing more. Many other writers, far (Page 128) more learned and entitled to be heard than the author has ever claimed to be, have sufficiently demonstrated that Peter never had anything to do with the foundation of the Latin Church; that his supposed name Petra, or Kiffa, also the whole story of his Apostleship at Rome, are simply a play on the term, which meant in every country, in one or another form, the Hierophant or interpreter of the Mysteries; and that finally, far from dying a martyr at Rome, where he had probably never been, he died at a good old age at Babylon. In Sepher Tolaoth Jeshu, a Hebrew manuscript of great antiquity - evidently an original and very precious document, if one may judge from the care the Jews took to hide it from the Christians - Simon (Peter) is referred to as “a faithful servant of God,” who passed his life in austerities and meditation, a Kabalist and a Nazarene who lived at Babylon “at the top of a tower, composed hymns, preached charity,” and died there.
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