SECRET DOCTRINE -VOLUME -3-
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|77||Apollonius of Tyana||17||129|
|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|
Appollonius of Tyana
(Page 129) IT is said in Isis Unveiled that the greatest teachers of divinity agree that nearly all ancient books were written symbolically and in a language intelligible only to the Initiated. The biographical sketch of Apollonius of Tyana affords an example. As every Kabalist knows, it embraces the whole of the Hermetic Philosophy, being a counterpart in many respects of the traditions left us of King Solomon. It reads like a fairy story, but, as in the case of the latter, sometimes facts and historical events are presented to the world under the colours of fiction. The journey to India represents in its every stage, though of course allegorically, the trials of a Neophyte, giving at the same time a geographical and topographical idea of a certain country as it is even now, if one knows where to look for it. The long discourses of Apollonius with the Brâhmans, their sage advice, and the dialogues with the Corinthian Menippus would, if interpreted, give the Esoteric Catechism. His visit to the empire of the wise men, his interview with their king Hiarchas, the oracle of Amphiaraus, explain symbolically many of the secret dogmas of Hermes - in the generic sense of the name - and of Occultism. Wonderful is this to relate, and were not the statement supported by numerous calculations already made, and the secret already half revealed, the writer would never have dared to say it. The travels of the great Magus are correctly, though allegorically described - that is to say, all that is related to Damis had actually taken place - but the narrative is based upon the Zodiacal signs. As transliterated by Damis under the guidance of Appollonius and translated by Philostratus, it is a marvel indeed. At the conclusion of what may now be related of the wonderful Adept of Tyana our meaning will become clearer. Suffice it to say for the present that the dialogues spoken of would disclose, if correctly understood, some of the most important secrets of Nature. Eliphas Levi points out the great (Page 130) resemblance which exists between King Hiarchus and the fabulous Hiram, from whom Solomon procured the cedars of Lebanon and the gold of Ophir. But he keeps silent as to another resemblance of which, as a learned Kabalist, he could not be ignorant. Moreover, according to his invariable custom, he mystifies the reader more than he teaches him, divulging nothing and leading him off the right track.
Like most of the historical heroes of hoary antiquity, whose lives and works strongly differ from those of commonplace humanity, Apollonius is to this day a riddle, which has, so far, found no Oedipus. His existence is surrounded with such a veil of mystery that he is often mistaken for a myth. But according to every law of logic and reason, it is quite clear that Apollonius should never be regarded in such a light. If the Tyanean Theurgist may be put down as a fabulous character, then history has no right to her Caesars and Alexanders. It is quite true that this Sage, who stands unrivalled in his thaumaturgical powers to this day - on evidence historically attested - came into the arena of public life no one seems to know whence, and disappeared from it, no one seems to know whither. But the reasons for this are evident. Every means was used - especially during the fourth and fifth centuries of our era - to sweep from people’s minds the remembrance of this great and holy man. The circulation of his biographies, which were many and enthusiastic, was prevented by the Christians, and for a very good reason, as we shall see. The diary of Damis survived most miraculously, and remained alone to tell the tale. But it must not be forgotten that Justin Martyr often speaks of Apollonius, and the character and truthfulness of this good man are unimpeachable, the more in that he had good reason to feel bewildered. Nor can it be denied that there is hardly a Church Father of the first six centuries that left Apollonius unnoticed. Only, according to invariable Christian customs of charity, their pens were dipped as usual in the blackest ink of odium theologicum, intolerance and one-sidedness. St. Jerome (Hieronymus) gives at length the story of St. John’s alleged contest with the Sage of Tyana - a competition of “miracles” - in which, of course, the truthful saint [ See Preface to St. Matthew’s Gospel. Baronius , i.752, quoted in De Mirville, VI, 63. Jerome is the Father who having found the authentic and original Evangel (the Hebrew text), by Matthew the Apostle-publican, in the library of Caesarea, “written by the hand of Matthew” (Hieronymus: De Viris, Illus. Chap. III) - as he himself admits - set it down as heretical, and substituted for it his own Greek text. And it is also he who perverted the text in the Book of Job to enforce belief in the resurrection in flesh (see Isis Unveiled. Vol. II, pp. 181 and 182, et seq.) quoting in support the most learned authorities.] describes in glowing colours the defeat of Apollonius, and seeks corroboration in St. John’s Apocrypha proclaimed doubtful even by the Church. [ De Mirville gives the following thrilling account of the “contest.” “John, pressed, as St. Jerome tells us, by all the churches of Asia to proclaim more solemnly [in the face of the miracles of Apollonius] the divinity of Jesus Christ, after a long prayer with his disciples on the Mount of Patmos and being in ecstasy by the divine Spirit, made heard amid thunder and lightning his famous In Principio erat Verbum. When that sublime extasis, that caused him to be named the ‘Son of Thunder,’ had passed, Apollonius was compelled to retire and to disappear. Such was his defeat, less bloody but as hard as that of Simon, the Magician. (“The Magician Theurgist.” VI 63.) For our part we have never heard of extasis producing thunder and lightning and we are at a loss to understand the meaning.]
The Mysterious Teacher (Page 131) Therefore it is that nobody can say where or when Apollonius was born, and everyone is equally ignorant of the date at which, and of the place where he died. Some think he was eighty or ninety years old at the time of his death, others that he was one hundred or even one hundred and seventeen. But, whether he ended his days at Ephesus in the year 96 A.D., as some say, or whether the event took place at Lindus in the temple of Pallas-Athene, or whether again he disappeared from the temple of Dictynna, or whether, as others maintain, he did not die at all, but when a hundred years old renewed his life by Magic,and went on working for the benefit of humanity, no one can tell. The Secret Doctrine alone have noted his birth and subsequent career. But then - “Who hath believed in that report?”
All that history knows is that Apollonius was the enthusiastic founder of a new school of contemplation. Perhaps less metaphorical and more practical than Jesus, he nevertheless inculcated the same quintessence of spirituality, the same high moral truths. He is accused of having confined them to the higher classes of society instead of doing what Buddha and Jesus did, instead of preaching them to the poor and the afflicted. Of his reasons for acting in such an exclusive way it is impossible to judge at so late a date. But Karmic law seems to be mixed up with it. Born, as we are told, among the aristocracy, it is very likely that he desired to finish the work undone in this particular direction by his predecessor, and sought to offer “peace on earth and good will” to all men, and not alone to the outcast and the criminal. Therefore he associated with the kings and mighty ones of the age. Nevertheless, the three “miracle-workers” exhibited striking similarity of purpose. Like Jesus and like Buddha, Apollonius was the uncompromising enemy of all outward show of piety, all display of useless religious ceremonies, bigotry and hypocrisy. That his “miracles” were more wonderful, more varied, and far better attested in (Page 132) History than any others, it is also true. Materialism denies; but evidence, and the affirmations of even the Church herself, however much he is branded by her, show this to be the fact. [ This is the old, old story. Who of us, Theosophists, but knows by bitter personal experiences what clerical hatred, malice and persecution can do in this direction; to what an extent of falsehood, calumny and cruelty these feelings can go, even in our modern day, and what exemplars of Christ like charity His alleged and self-constituted servants have shown themselves to be! ]
The calumnies set afloat against Apollonius were as numerous as they were false. So late as eighteen centuries after his death he was defamed by Bishop Douglas in his work against miracles. In this the Right Reverend bishop crushed himself against historical facts. For it is not in the miracles, but in the identity of ideas and doctrines preached that we have to look for a similarity between Buddha, Jesus and Apollonius. If we study the question with a dispassionate mind, we shall soon perceive that the ethics of Gautama, Plato, Apollonius, Jesus, Ammonius Sakkas, and his disciples, were all based on the same mystic philosophy - that all worshipped one divine ideal, whether they considered it as the “Father” of humanity, who lives in man, as man lives in Him, or as the Incomprehensible Creative Principle. All led God-like lives. Ammonius, speaking of his philosophy, taught that their school dated from the days of Hermes, who brought this wisdom from India. It was the same mystical contemplation throughout as that of the Yogin: the communion of the Brahman with his own luminous Self - the “Atman.” [ Isis Unveiled, ii. 342.]
The groundwork of the Eclectic School is thus shown to be identical with the doctrines of the Yogis - the Hindu Mystics; it is proved that it has a common origin, from the same source as the earlier Buddhism of Gautama and of his Arhats.
The Ineffable Name in the search for which so many Kabalists - unacquainted with any Oriental or even European Adepts - vainly consume their knowledge and lives, dwells latent in the heart of every man. This mirific name which, according to the most ancient oracles, “rushes into the infinite worlds,αφοιτητω οτροφαλιγαι ,” can be obtained in a twofold way: by regular initiation, and through the “small voice” which Elijah heard in the cave of Horeb, the mount of God. And “when Elijah heard it he wrapped his face in his mantle and stood in the entering of the cave. And behold there came the voice.”
When Apollonius of Tyana desired to hear the “small voice,” he used to wrap himself up entirely in a mantle of fine wool, on which he placed both his feet, after having performed certain magnetic passes, and pronounced not the “name” but an invocation well known to every adept. Then he drew the mantle over his head and face, and his translucid or astral spirit was free. On ordinary occasions he no more wore wool than the priests of the temples. The possession of the secret combination of the “name” gave the Hierophant supreme power over every being, human or otherwise, inferior to himself in soul-strength. [ Loc. cit., ii, 343, 344.]
Apollonius Cannot Be Destroyed (Page 133) To whatever school he belonged, this fact is certain, that Apollonius of Tyana left an imperishable name behind him. Hundreds of works were written upon this wonderful man; historians have seriously discussed him; pretentious fools, unable to come to any conclusion about the Sage, have tried to deny his very existence. As to the Church, although she execrates his memory, she has ever tried to present him in the light of a historical character. Her policy now seems to be to direct the impression left by him into another channel - a well known and a very old stratagem. The Jesuits, for instance, while admitting his “miracles,” have set going a double current of thought, and they have succeeded, as they succeed in all they undertake. Apollonius is represented by one party as an obedient “medium of Satan,” surrounding his theurgical powers by a most wonderful and dazzling light; while the other party professes to regard the whole matter as a clever romance, written with a predetermined object in view.
In his voluminous Memoirs of Satan, the Marquis de Mirville, in the course of his pleading for the recognition of the enemy of God as the producer of spiritual phenomena, devotes a whole chapter to this great Adept. The following translation of passages in his book unveils the whole plot. The reader is asked to bear in mind that the Marquis wrote every one of his works under the auspices and authorisation of the Holy See of Rome.
It would be to leave the first century incomplete and to offer an insult to the memory of St. John, to pass over in silence the name of one who had the honour of being his special antagonist, as Simon was that of St. Peter, Elymas that of Paul, etc. In the first years of the Christian era, . . . there appeared at Tyana in Cappadocia one of those men of whom the Pythagorean School was so very lavish. As great a traveller as was his master, initiated in all the secret doctrines of India, Egypt and Chaldaea, endowed, therefore, with all the theurgic powers of the ancient Magi, he bewildered, each in its turn, all the countries which he visited, and which all - we are obliged to admit - seem to have blessed his memory. We could not doubt this fact without repudiating real historical records. The details of his life are transmitted to us by a historian of the fourth century (Philostratus), himself the translator of a diary that recorded day by day the life of the philosopher, written by Damis, his disciple and intimate friend. [ Pneumatologie, vi. 62.]
De Mirville admits the possibility of some exaggerations in both recorder and translator; but he “does not believe they hold a very wide space in the narrative.” Therefore, he regrets to find the Abbe (Page 134) Freppel “in his eloquent Essays, [ Les Apologistes Chrétiens au Second Siècle. p.106.] calling the diary of Damis a romance.” Why?
The anguis in herba has shown its head. It is the perfect, the wonderful similitude of the life of Apollonius with that of the Saviour that places the Church between Scylla and Charybdis. To deny the life and the “miracles” of the former, would amount to denying the trustworthiness of the same Apostles and patristic writers on whose evidence is built the life of Jesus himself. To father the Adept’s beneficent deeds, his raisings of the dead, acts of charity, healing powers, etc., on the “ old enemy” would be rather dangerous at this time. Hence the stratagem to confuse the ideas of
[Because] the orator bases his opinion on the prefect similitude, calculated as he imagines, of that legend with the life of the Saviour. But in studying the subject more profoundly, he [Abbe Freppel] can convince himself that neither Apollonius nor Damis, nor again Philostratus ever claimed a greater honour than a likeness to St. John. This programme was in itself sufficiently fascinating, and the travesty as sufficiently scandalous; for owing to magic arts Apollonius had succeeded in counterbalancing, in appearance, several of the miracles at Ephesus [produced by St. John], etc. [ Pneumatologie, vi. 62.]
those who rely upon authorities and criticisms. The Church is far more clear-sighted than any of our great historians. The Church knows that to deny the existence of that Adept would lead her to denying the Emperor Vespasian and his Historians, the Emperors Alexander Severus and Aurelianus and their Historians, and finally to deny Jesus and every evidence about Him, thus preparing the way to her flock for finally denying herself. It becomes interesting to learn what she says in this emergency, through her chosen speaker, De Mirville. It is as follows:
What is there so new and so impossible in the narrative of Damis concerning their voyages to the countries of the Chaldees and the Gymnosophists? - he asks. Try to recall, before denying, what were in those days those countries of marvels par excellence, as also the testimony of such men as Pythagoras, Empedocles and Democritus, who ought to be allowed to have known what they were writing about. With what have we finally to reproach Apollonius? Is it for having made, as the Oracles did, a series of prophecies and predictions wonderfully verified? No: because, better studied now, we know what they are. [ Many are they who do not know: hence, they do not believe in them.] The Oracles have now become to us, what they were to every one during the past century, from Van Dale to Fontenelle.
De Mirville on Apollonius (Page 135) Is it for having been endowed with second sight, and having had visions at a distance? [ Just so. Apollonius, during a lecture he was delivering at Ephesus before an audience of many thousands, perceived the murder of the Emperor Domitian in Rome and notified it at the very moment it was taking place, to the whole town: and Swedenborg, in the same manner, saw from Gothenburg the great fire at Stockholm and told it to his friends, no telegraph being in use in those days.] No; for such phenomena are at the present day endemical in half Europe. Is it for having boasted of his knowledge of every existing language under the sun, without having ever learned one of them? But who can be ignorant of the fact that this is the best criterion [ No criterion at all. The Hindu Saddhus and Adepts acquire the gift by the holiness of their lives. The Yoga-Vidya teaches it, and no “spirits” are required.] of the presence and assistance of a spirit of whatever nature it may be? Or is it for having believed in transmigration (reincarnation)? It is still believed in (by millions) in our day. No one has any idea of the number of the men of Science who long for the re-establishment of the Druidical Religion and of the Mysteries of Pythagoras. Or is it for having exorcised the demons and the plague? The Egyptians, the Etruscans and all the Roman Pontiffs had done so long before. [ As to the Pontiffs, the matter is rather doubtful.] For having conversed with the dead? We do the same today, or believe we do so - which is all the same. For having believed in the Empuses? Where is the Demonologist that does not know that the Empuse is the “south demon” referred to in David’s Psalms, and dreaded then as it is feared even now in all Northern Europe? [ But this alone is no reason why people should believe in this class of spirits. There are better authorities for such belief.] For having made himself invisible at will? It is one of the achievements of mesmerism. For having appeared after his (supposed) death to the Emperor Aurelian above the city walls of Tyana, and for having compelled him thereby to raise the siege of that town? Such was the mission of every hero beyond the tomb, and the reason of the worship vowed to the Manes. [ De Mirville’s aim is to show that all such apparitions of the Manes or disembodied Spirits are the work of the Devil. “Satan’s simulacra.”] For having descended into the famous den of Trophonius, and taken from it an old book preserved for years after by the Emperor Adrian in his Antium library? The trustworthy and sober Pausanias had descended into the same den before Apollonius, and came back no less a believer. For having disappeared at his death? Yes, like Romulus, like Votan, like Lycurgus, like Pythagoras, (Page 136) [ He might have added: like the great Shankaracharya, Tsong-Kha-Pa, and so many other real Adepts - even his own Master, Jesus: for this is indeed a criterion of true Adeptship, though “to disappear” one need not fly up in the clouds.] always under the most mysterious circumstances, ever attended by apparitions, revelations, etc. Let us stop here and repeat once more: had the life of Apollonius been simple romance, he would never have attained such a celebrity during his lifetime or created such a numerous sect, one so enthusiastic after his death.
And, so to add to this, had all this been a romance, never would a Caracalla have raised a haroon to his memory, [ See Dion Cassius. XXVII XVIII, 2 ] or Alexander Severus have placed his bust between those of two Demi-Gods and of the true God, [Lampridlius, Adrian, xxxix. 2.] or an Empress have corresponded with him. Hardly rested from the hardships of the siege at Jerusalem, Titus would not have hastened to write to Apollonius a letter, asking to meet him at Argos and adding that his father and himself (Titus) owed all to him, the great Apollonius, and that, therefore, his first thought was for their benefactor. Nor would the Emperor Aurelian have built a temple and a shrine to that great Sage, to thank him for his apparition and communication at Tyana. That posthumous conversation, as all knew, saved the city, inasmuch as Aurelian had in consequence raised the siege. Furthermore, had it been a romance, History would not have had Vopiscus, [ The passage runs as follows: “Aurelian had determined to destroy Tyana, and the town owed its salvation only to a miracle of Apollonius; this man so famous and wise, this great friend of the Gods, appeared suddenly before the Emperor, as he was returning to his tent, in his own figure and form, and said to him in the Pannonian language: ‘Aurelian, if thou wouldst conquer, abandon these evil designs against my fellow-citizens: if thou wouldst command, abstain from shedding innocent blood; and if thou wouldst live, abstain from injustice.’ Aurelian, familiar with the face of Apollonius, whose portraits he had seen in many temples, struck with wonder, immediately vowed to him (Apollonius) statue, portrait and temple, and returned completely to ideas of mercy.” And then Vopiscus adds: “If I have believed more and more in the virtues of the majestic Apollonius, it is because, after gathering my information from the most serious men, I have found all these facts corroborated in the Books of the Ulpian Library.” (See Flavius Vopiscus, Aurelianus). Vopiscus wrote in 250 and consequently preceded Philostratus by a century.] one of the most trustworthy Pagan Historians, to certify to it. Finally, Apollonius would not have been the object of the admiration of such a noble character as Epictetus, and even of several of the Fathers of the Church; Jerome for instance, in his better moments, writing thus of Apollonius:
This travelling philosopher found something to learn wherever he went; and profiting everywhere thus improved with every day. [ Ep. ad Paulinum.]
Apollonius No Fiction (Page 137) As to his prodigies, without wishing to fathom them, Jerome most undeniably admits them as such; which he would assuredly never have done, had he not been compelled to do so by facts. To end the subject, had Apollonius been a simple hero of a romance, dramatised in the fourth century, the Ephesians would not, in their enthusiastic gratitude, have raised to him a golden statue for all the benefits he had conferred upon them. [ The above is mostly summarised from De Mirville. loc cit., pp. 66-69 ]
Facts Underlying Adept Biographies
(Page 138) THE tree is known by its fruits; the nature of the Adept by his words and deeds. These words of charity and mercy, the noble advice put into the mouth of Apollonius (or of his sidereal phantom), as given by Vopiscus, show the Occultists who Apollonius was. Why then call him the “Medium of Satan” seventeen centuries later? There must be a reason, and a very potent reason, to justify and explain the secret of such a strong animus of the Church against one of the noblest men of his age. There is a reason for it, and we give it in the words of the author of the Key to the Hebrew-Egyptian Mystery in the Source of Measures, and of Professor Seyffarth. The latter analyses and explains the salient dates in the life of Jesus, and thus throws light on the conclusions of the former. We quote both, blending the two.
According to solar months (of thirty days, one of the calendars in use among the Hebrews) all remarkable events of the Old Testament happened on the days of the equinoxes and the solstices; for instance, the foundations and dedications of the temples and alters [and consecration of the tabernacle]. On the same cardinal days, the most remarkable events of the New Testament happened; for instance, the annunciation, the birth, the resurrection of Christ, and the birth of John the Baptist. And thus we learn that all remarkable epochs of the New Testament were typically sanctified a long time before by the Old Testament, beginning at the day succeeding the end of the Creation, which was the day of the vernal equinox. During the crucifixion, on the 14th day of Nisan, Dionysius Areopagita saw, in Ethopia, an eclipse of the sun, and he said, “Now the Lord (Jehovah) is suffering something.” Then Christ arose from the dead on the 22d March, 17 Nisan, Sunday, the day of the vernal equinox (Seyf., quoting Philo de Septen) - that is, on Easter, or on the day when the sun gives new life to the earth. The words of John the Baptist “He must increase, but I must decrease,” serve to prove, as is affirmed by the fathers of the church, that John was born on the longest day of the year, and Christ, who was six months younger, on the shortest, 22d June and 22d December, the solstices.
Jesus and Apollonius-
(Page 139) This only goes to show that, as to another phase, John and Jesus were but epitomisers of the history of the same sun, under differences of aspect or condition; and one condition following another, of necessity, the statement, Luke, ix. 7, was not only not an empty one, but it was true, that which “was said of some, that (in Jesus) John was risen from the dead.” (And this consideration serves to explain why it has been that the Life of Apollonius of Tyana, by Philostratus, has been so persistently kept back from translation and from popular reading. Those who have studied it in the original have been forced to the comment that either the Life of Apollonius has been taken from the New Testament, or that the New Testament narratives have been taken from the Life of Apollonius, because of the manifest sameness of the means of construction of the narratives. The explanation is simple enough, when it is considered that the names of Jesus Hebrew שי,and Apollonius, or Apollo, are alike names of the sun in the heavens; and necessarily the history of the one, as to his travels through the signs, with the personifications of his sufferings, triumphs and miracles, could be but the history of the other, where there was a widespread, common method of describing those travels by personification.) It seems also that, for long afterward, all this was known to rest upon an astronomical basis; for the secular church, so to speak, was founded by Constantine, and the objective condition of the worship established was that part of his decree, in which it was affirmed that the venerable day of the sun should be the day set apart for the worship of Jesus Christ, as Sun-day. There is something weird and startling in some other facts about this matter. The prophet Daniel (true prophet,as says Graetz). [ A “true prophet” because an Initiate, one perfectly versed in Occult astronomy.] by use of the pyramid numbers, or astrological numbers, foretold the cutting off of the Meshiac, as it happened (which would go to show the accuracy of his astronomical knowledge, if there was an eclipse of the sun at that time). . . . Now, however, the temple was destroyed in the year 71, in the month Virgo, and 71 is the Dove number, as shown, or 71X5 = 355, and with the fish, a Jehovah number.
“Is it possible,” queries, further on the author, thus answering the intimate thought of every Christian and Occultist who reads and studies his work:
Is it possible that the events of humanity do run co-ordinately with these number forms? If so, while Jesus Christ, as an astronomical figure, was true to all that has been advanced, and more, possibly. He may, as a man, have filled up, under the numbers, answers in the sea of life to predestined type. The personality of Jesus does not appear to have been destroyed, because, as a condition, he was answering to astronomical forms and relations. The Arabian says, “Your destiny is written in the stars.” [ Key to Hebrew-Egyptian Mystery. p. 259 et seq. Astronomy and physiology are the bodies, astrology and psychology their informing souls: the former being studied by the eye of sensual perception, the latter by the inner or “soul-eye”: and both are exact sciences.]
Nor is the “personality” of Apollonius “destroyed,” for the same (Page 140) reason. The case of Jesus covers the ground for the same possibility in the cases of all Adepts and Avataras - such as Buddha, Shankaracharya, Krishna, etc. - all of these as great and as historical for their respective followers and in their countries, as Jesus of Nazareth is now for Christians and in this land.
But there is something more in the old literature of the early centuries. Iamblichus wrote a biography of the great Pythagoras.
The latter so closely resembles the life of Jesus that it may be taken for a travesty. Diogenes Laërtius and Plutarch relate the history of Plato according to a similar style. [ New Platonism and Alchemy. p.12.]
Why then wonder at the doubts that assail every scholar who studies all these lives? The Church herself knew all these doubts in her early stages; and though only one of her Popes has been known publicly and openly as a Pagan, how many more were there who were too ambitious to reveal the truth?
This “mystery,” for mystery indeed it is to those who, not being Initiates, fail to find the key of the perfect similitude between the lives of Pythagoras, Buddha, Apollonius, etc, - is only a natural result for those who know that all these great characters were Initiates of the same school. For them there is neither “travesty” nor “copy” of one from the other; for them they are all “originals,” only painted to represent one and the same subject: the mystic, and at the same time the public, life of the Initiates sent into the world to save portions of humanity, if they could not save the whole bulk. Hence, the same programme for all. The assumed “immaculate origin” for each, referring to their “mystic birth” during the Mystery of Initiation, and accepted literally by the multitudes, encouraged in this by the better informed but ambitious clergy. Thus, the mother of each one of them was declared a virgin, conceiving her son directly by the Holy Spirit of God; and the Sons, in consequence, were the “Sons of God,” though in truth, none of them was any more entitled to such recognition than were the rest of his brother Initiates, for they were all - so far as their mystic lives were concerned - only “the epitomisers of the history of the same Sun,” which epitome is another mystery within the Mystery. The biographies of the external personalities bearing the names of such heroes have nothing to do with, and are quite independent of the private lives of the heroes, being only the mystic records of their public and, parallel therewith, of their inner lives, in their characters as Neophytes and Initiates.
Biographies of Initiates- (Page 141) Hence, the manifest sameness of the means of construction of their respective biographies. From the beginning of Humanity the Cross, or Man, with his arms stretched out horizontally, typifying his kosmic origin, was connected with his psychic nature and with the struggles which lead to Initiation. But, if it is once shown that (a) every true Adept had, and still has, to pass through the seven and the twelve trials of Initiation, symbolised by the twelve labours of Hercules; (b) that the day of his real birth is regarded as that day when he is born into the world spiritually, his very age being counted from the hour of his second birth, which makes of him a “twice-born,” a Dvija or Initiate, on which day he is indeed born of a God and from an immaculate Mother; and (c) that the trials of all these personages are made to correspond with the Esoteric significance of initiatory rites - all of which corresponded to the twelve zodiacal signs - then every one will see the meaning of the travels of all those heroes through the signs of the Sun in Heaven; and that they are in each individual case a personification of the “sufferings, triumphs and miracles” of an Adept, before and after his Initiation. When to the world at large all this is explained, then also the mystery of all those lives, so closely resembling each other that the history of one seems to be the history of the other, and vice versa, will, like everything else, become plain.
Take an instance. The legends - for they are all legends for exoteric purposes, whatever may be the denials in one case - of the lives of Krishna, Hercules, Pythagoras, Buddha, Jesus, Apollonius, Chaitanya. On the worldly plane, their biographies, if written by one outside the circle, would differ greatly from what we read of them in the narratives that are preserved of their mystic lives. Nevertheless, however much masked and hidden from the profane gaze, the chief features of such lives will all be found there in common. Each of those characters is represented as a divinely begotten Soter (Saviour), a title bestowed on deities, great kings and heroes; everyone of them, whether at their birth or afterwards, is searched for, and threatened with death (yet never killed) by an opposing power (the world of Matter and Illusion), whether it be called a king Kansa, king Herod, or king Mara (the Evil Power). They are all tempted, persecuted and finally said to have been murdered at the end of the rite of Initiation, i.e. in their physical personalities, of which they are supposed to have been rid for ever after spiritual “resurrection” or “birth.” And having thus come (Page 142) to an end by this supposed violent death, they all descend to the Nether World, the Pit or Hell - the Kingdom of Temptation, Lust and Matter, therefore of Darkness, whence returning, having overcome the “Chrest-condition,” they are glorified and become “Gods.”
is not in the course of their everyday life, then, that the great similarity
is to be sought, but in their inner state and in the most important events of
their career as religious teachers. All this is connected with, and built upon,
an astronomical basis, which serves, at the same time, as a foundation for the
representation of the degrees and trials of Initiation: descent into the Kingdom
of Darkness and Matter, for the last time, to emerge therefrom as “Suns
of Righteousness,” is the most important of these and, therefore, is found
in the history of all the Soters - from Orpheus and Hercules, down to Krishna
Heracles, who has gone from the chambers of earth,
Leaving the nether home of Pluto. [ Heracles 807 ]
At Thee the Stygian lakes trembled; Thee the janitor of Orcus
Feared . . . Thee not even Typhon frightened . . .
Hail, true son of Jove, glory added to the Gods. [ Aeneid, viii., 274, ff.]
Orpheus seeks, in the kingdom of Pluto, Eurydice, his lost Soul; Krishna goes down into the infernal regions and rescues therefrom his six brothers, he being the seventh Principle; a transparent allegory of his becoming a “perfect Initiate,” the whole of the six Principles merging into the seventh. Jesus is made to descend into the kingdom of Satan to save the soul of Adam, or the symbol of material physical humanity.
Have any of our learned Orientalists ever thought of searching for the origin of this allegory, for the parent “Seed” of that “Tree of Life” which bears such verdant boughs since it was first planted on earth by the hand of its “Builders”? We fear not. Yet it is found, as is now shown, even in the exoteric, distorted interpretations of the Vedas - of the Rig Veda, the oldest, the most trustworthy of all the four - this root and seed of all future Initiate-Saviours being called in it the Visvakarmâ, the “Father” Principle, “beyond the comprehension of mortals;” in the second stage Sûrya, the “Son,” who offers Himself as a sacrifice to Himself; in the third, the Initiate, who sacrifices His physical to His Spiritual Self.
Similarity of Legends- (Page 143) It is in Visvakarmâ, the “omnificent” who becomes (mystically) Vikkartana, the “sun shorn of his beams,” who suffers for his too ardent nature, and then becomes glorified (by purification), that the keynote of the Initiation into the greatest Mystery of Nature was struck. Hence the secret of the wonderful “similarity.”
All this is allegorical and mystical, and yet perfectly comprehensible and plain to any student of Eastern Occultism, even superficially acquainted with the Mysteries of Initiation. In our objective Universe of Matter and false appearances the Sun is the most fitting emblem of the life-giving, beneficent Deity. In the subjective, boundless World of Spirit and Reality the bright luminary has another and a mystical significance, which cannot be fully given to the public. The so-called “idolatrous” Parsis and Hindus are certainly nearer the truth in their religious reverence for the Sun, than the cold, ever-analysing, and as ever-mistaken, public is prepared to believe, at present. The Theosophists, who will be alone able to take in the meaning, may be told that the Sun is the external manifestation of the Seventh Principle of our Planetary System, while the Moon is its Fourth Principle, shining in the borrowed robes of her master, saturated with and reflecting every passionate impulse and evil desire of her grossly material body, Earth. The whole cycle of Adeptship and Initiation and all its mysteries are connected with, and subservient to, these two and the Seven Planets. Spiritual clairvoyance is derived from the Sun; all psychic states, diseases, and even lunacy, proceed from the Moon.
According even to the data of History - her conclusions being remarkably erroneous while her premises are mostly correct - there is an extraordinary agreement between the “legends” of every Founder of a Religion (and also between the rites and dogmas of all) and the names and course of constellations headed by the Sun. It does not follow, however, because of this, that both Founders and their Religions should be, the one myths, and the other superstitions. They are, one and all, the different versions of the same natural primeval Mystery, on which the Wisdom-Religion was based, and the development of its Adepts subsequently framed
And now once more we have to beg the reader not to lend an ear to the charge - against Theosophy in general and the writer in particular - of disrespect toward one of the greatest and noblest characters in the History of Adeptship - Jesus of Nazareth - nor even of hatred to the Church. The expression of truth and fact can hardly be regarded, (Page 144) with any approximation to justice, as blasphemy or hatred. The whole question hangs upon the solution of that one point: Was Jesus as “Son of God” and “Saviour” of Mankind, unique in the World’s annals? Was His case - among so many similar claims - the only exceptional and unprecedented one; His birth the sole supernaturally immaculate; and were others as maintained by the Church, but blasphemous Satanic copies and plagiarisms by anticipation? Or was He only the “son of his deeds,” a pre-eminently holy man, and a reformer, one of many, who paid with His life for the presumption of endeavouring, in the face of ignorance and despotic power, to enlighten mankind and make its burden lighter by His Ethics and Philosophy? The first necessitates a blind, all-resisting faith; the latter is suggested to every one by reason and logic. Moreover, had the Church always believed as she does now - or rather, as she pretends she does, in order to be thus justified in directing her anathema against those who disagree with her - or has she passed through the same throes of doubt, nay, of secret denial and belief, suppressed only by the force of ambition and love of power?
The question must be answered in the affirmative as to the second alternative. It is an irrefutable conclusion, and a natural inference based on facts known from historical records. Leaving for the present untouched the lives of many Popes and Saints that loudly belied their claims to infallibility and holiness, let the reader turn to Ecclesiastical History, the records of the growth and progress of the Christian Church (not of Christianity), and he will find the answer on those pages. Says a writer:
The Church has known too well the suggestions of freethought created by enquiry, as also all those doubts that provoke her anger today; and the “sacred truths” she would promulgate have been in turn admitted and repudiated, transformed and altered, amplified and curtailed, by the dignitaries of the Church hierarchy, even as regards the most fundamental dogmas.
Where is that God or Hero whose origin, biography, and genealogy were more hazy, or more difficult to define and finally agree upon than those of Jesus? How was the now irrevocable dogma with regard to His true nature settled at last? By His mother, according to the Evangelists, He was a man - a simple mortal man; by His Father He is God! But how? Is He then man or God, or is He both at the same time? asks the perplexed writer. Truly the propositions offered on this point of the doctrine have caused floods of ink and blood to be shed, in turn, on poor Humanity, and still the doubts are not at rest. In this as in everything else , the wise Church Councils have contradicted themselves and changed their minds a number of times.
Nature of Christ- (Page 145) Let us recapitulate and throw a glance at the texts offered for our inspection. This is History.
The Bishop Paul of Samosata denied the divinity of Christ at the first Council of Antioch; at the very origin and birth of theological Christianity, He was called “Son of God” merely on account of His holiness and good deeds. His blood was corruptible in the Sacrament of the Eucharist.
At the Council of Nicaea, held A.D. 325, Arius came out with his premisses, which nearly broke asunder the Catholic Union.
Seventeen bishops defended the doctrines of Arius, who was exiled for them. Nevertheless, thirty years after, A.D. 355, at the Council of Milan, three hundred bishops signed a letter of adherence to the Arian views, notwithstanding that ten years earlier, A.D. 345, at a new Council of Antioch, the Eusebians had proclaimed that Jesus Christ was the Son of God and One with His Father.
At the Council of Sirmium, A.D. 357, the “Son” had become no longer consubstantial. The Anomaeans, who denied that consubstantiality, and the Arians were triumphant. A year later, at the second Council of Ancyra, it was decreed that the “Son was not consubstantial but only similar to the Father in his substance.” Pope Liberius ratified the decision. During several centuries the Council fought and quarrelled, supporting the most contradictory and opposite views, the fruit of their laborious travail being the Holy Trinity, which, Minerva-like, issued forth from the theological brain, armed with all the thunders of the Church. The new mystery was ushered into the world amid some terrible strifes, in which murder and other crimes had a high hand. At the Council of Saragossa, A.D. 380, it was proclaimed that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are one and the same Person, Christ’s human nature being merely an “illusion” - an echo of the Avatâric Hindu doctrine. “Once upon this slippery path the Fathers had to slide down ad absurdum - which they did not fail of doing.” How deny human nature in him who was born of a woman? The only wise remark made during one of the Councils of Constantinople came from Eutyches, who was bold enough to say: “May God preserve me from reasoning on the nature of my God” - for which he was excommunicated by Pope Flavius.
At the Council of Ephesus, A.D. 449, Eutyches had his revenge. As Eusibius, the veracious Bishop of Caesarea, was forcing him into the (Page 146) admission of two distinct natures in Jesus Christ, the Council rebelled against him and it was proposed that Eusebius should be burned alive. The bishops arose like one man, and with fists clenched, foaming with rage, demanded that Eusebius should be torn into halves, and be dealt by as he would deal with Jesus, whose nature he divided. Eutyches was re-established in his power and office, Eusebius and Flavius deposed. Then the two parties attacked each other most violently and fought. St. Flavius was so ill-treated by Bishop Diodorus, who assaulted and kicked him, that he died a few days from the injuries inflicted.
Every incongruity was courted in these Councils, and the result is the present living paradoxes called Church dogmas. For instance, at the first Council of Ancyra, A.D. 314, it was asked, “In baptising a woman with child, is the unborn baby also baptised by the fact?” The Council answered in the negative; because as was alleged, “the person thus receiving baptism must be a consenting party, which is impossible to the child in the mother’s womb.” Thus then unconsciousness is a canonical obstacle to baptism, and thus no child baptised nowadays is baptised at all in fact. And then what becomes of the tens of thousands of starving heathen babies baptised by the missionaries during famines, and otherwise surreptitiously “saved” by the too zealous Padres? Follow one after another the debates and decisions of the numberless Councils, and behold on what a jumble of contradictions the present infallible and Apostolic Church is built!
And now we can see how greatly paradoxical, when taken literally, is the assertion in Genesis: “God created man in his own image.” Besides the glaring fact that it is not the Adam of dust (of Chapter ii.) who is thus made in the divine image, but the Divine Androgyne (of Chapter i.), or Adam Kadmon, one can see for oneself that God - the God of the Christians at any rate - was created by man in his own image, amid the kicks, blows and murders of the early Councils.
A curious fact, one that throws a flood of light on the claim that Jesus was an Initiate and a martyred Adept, is given in the work, (already so often referred to) which may be called “a mathematical revelation” - The Source of Measures.
Attention is called to the part of the 46th verse of the 27th Chapter of Matthew, as follows: “Eli, Eli, Lama Sabachthani? - that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Of course, our versions are taken from the original Greek manuscripts (the reason why we have no original Hebrew manuscripts concerning these occurrences being because the enigmas in Hebrew would betray themselves on comparison with the sources of their derivation, the Old Testament).
A Serious Mistranslation
(Page 147) The Greek manuscripts, without exception, give these words as -
Hλι Hλι λαμα .σαβαχθανι
They are Hebrew words, rendered into the Greek, and in Hebrew are as follows:
The scripture of these words says, “that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” as their proper translation. Here then are the words beyond all dispute; and beyond all question, such is the interpretation given of them by Scripture. Now the words will not bear this interpretation, and it is a false rendering. The true meaning is just the opposite of the one given, and is -
My God, My God, how thou dost glorify me!
But even more, for while lama is why, or how, as a verbal it connected the idea of to dazzle, or adverbially, it could run “how dazzlingly,” and so on. To the unwary reader this interpretation is enforced, and made to answer, as it were, to the fulfilment of a prophetic utterance, by a marginal reference to the first verse of the twenty-second Psalm, which reads:
“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
The Hebrew of this verse for these words is -
as to which the reference is correct, and the interpretation sound and good, but with an utterly different word. The words are -
Eli, Eli, lamah azabvtha-ni?
No wit of man, however scholarly, can save this passage from falseness of rendering on its face; and as so, it becomes a most terrible blow upon the proper first-face sacredness of the recital. [ App., vii., p.301.]
For ten years or more, sat the revisers (?) of the Bible, a most imposing and solemn array of the learned of the land, the greatest Hebrew and Greek scholars of England, purporting to correct the mistakes and blunders, the sins of omission and of commission of their less learned predecessors, the translators of the Bible. Are we going to be told that none of them saw the glaring difference between the Hebrew words in Psalm xxii., Azabbvtha-ni , and sabachthani in Matthew; that they were not aware of the deliberate falsification?
For “falsification” it was. And if we are asked the reason why the early Church Fathers resorted to it, the answer is plain: Because the Sacramental words belonged in their true rendering to Pagan temple rites. (Page 148) They were pronounced after the terrible trials of Initiation, and were still fresh in the memory of some of the “Fathers” when the Gospel of Matthew was edited into the Greek language. Because, finally, many of the Hierophants of the Mysteries, and many more of the Initiates were still living in those days, and the sentence rendered in its true words would class Jesus directly with the simple Initiates. The words “My God, my Sun, thou hast poured thy radiance upon me?” were the final words that concluded the thanksgiving prayer of the Initiate, “the Son and the glorified Elect of the Sun.” In Egypt we find to this day carvings and paintings that represent the rite. The candidate is between two divine sponsors; one “Osiris-Sun” with the head of a hawk, representing life, the other Mercury - the ibis-headed, psychopompic genius, who guides the Souls after death to their new abode, Hades - standing for the death of the physical body, figuratively. Both are shown pouring the “stream of life,” the water of purification, on the head of the Initiate, the two streams of which, interlacing, form a cross. The better to conceal the truth, this basso-relievo has also been explained as a “Pagan presentment of a Christian truth.” The Chevalier des Mousseaux calls this Mercury:
The assessor of Osiris-Sol, as St. Michael is the assessor, Ferouer, of the Word.
The monogram of Chrestos and the Labarum, the standard of Constantine - who, by the by, died a Pagan and was never baptised - is a symbol derived from the above rite and also denotes “life and death.” Long before the sign of the Cross was adopted as a Christian symbol, it was employed as a secret sign of recognition among Neophytes and Adepts. Says Eliphas Levi:
The sign of the cross adopted by the Christians does not belong exclusively to them. It is kabalistic, and represents the oppositions and quaternary equilibrium of the elements. We see by the occult verse of the Pater, to which we have called attention in another work, that there were originally two ways of making it, or, at least, two very different formulas to express its meaning; one reserved for priests and initiates; the other given to neophyte and the profane. [Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie, ii, 88.]
One can understand now why the Gospel of Matthew, the Evangel of the Ebionites, has been for ever excluded in its Hebrew form from the world’s curious grace.
Jerome found the authentic and original Evangel written in Hebrew, by Matthew the Publican, at the library collected at Caesarea by the martyr Pamphilius, “I received permission from the Nazaraeans, who at Beroea of Syria used this (gospel to translate it, “ he writes toward the end of the fourth century. [ (Hieronymus, Des Viris Illust., III) “It is remarkable that, while all Church Fathers say that Matthew wrote in Hebrew, the whole of them use the Greek text as the genuine apostolic writing, without mentioning what relation the Hebrew Matthew has to our Greek one! It had many peculiar additions which are wanting in our (Greek ) Evangel” (Olshausen, Nachweis der Echtheit der Sammtlichen Schriften des Neuen Test., p.32; Dunlap, Sod, the Son of Man, p. 44.) ]
Secret Doctrine of Jesus
(Page 149) “In the Evangel which the Nazarenes and Ebionites use,” said Jerome, “which recently I translated from Hebrew into Greek, and which is called by most persons the genuine gospel of Matthew,” etc. [Comment to Matthew (XII, 13) Book 11. Jerome adds that it was written in the Chaldaic language, but with Hebrew letters.]
That the apostles had received a “secret doctrine” from Jesus, who confessed it in an unguarded moment. Writing to the Bishops Chromatius and Heliodorus, he complains that “a difficult work is enjoined, since this (translation) has been commanded me by your Felicities, which St Matthew himself, the Apostle and Evangelist, did not wish to be openly written. For if this had not been secret he (Matthew) would have added to the Evangel that what he gave forth was his ; but he made up this book sealed up in the Hebrew characters, which he put forth even in such way that the book, written in Hebrew letters and by the hand of himself, might be possessed by the men most religious ; who also, in the course of time, received it from those who preceded them. But this very book they never gave to any one to be transcribed, and its text they related some one way and another.” [ “St. Jerome.” v.445: Dunlap, Sod, the Son of Man, p. 46.] And he adds further on the same page: “And it happened that this book, having been published by a disciple of Manichaeus, named Seleucus, who also wrote falsely The Acts of the Apostles, exhibited matter not for edification, but for destruction; and that this (book) was approved in a synod which the ears of the Church properly refused to listen to.” [This accounts also for the rejection of the works of Justin Martyr, who used only this “Gospel according to the Hebrews,” as also did most probably Tatian, his disciple. At what a later period the divinity of Christ was fully established we can judge by the mere fact that even in the fourth century Eusebius did not denounce this book as spurious, but only classed it with such as the Apocalypse of John: and Credner ( Zur Gesch. des Kan, p. 129) shows Nicephorus inserting it, together with the Revelation, in his Stichometry, among the Antilegomena. The Ebionites, the genuine primitive Christians, rejecting the rest of the Apostolic writings, make use only of this Gospel (Adv Hev., i. 26) and the Ebionites, as Epiphanius declares, firmly believed, with the Nazarenes, that Jesus was but a man, “of the seed of a man.”]
Jerome admits, himself, that the book which he authenticates as being written “by the hand of Matthew,” was nevertheless a book which, notwithstanding that he translated it twice, was nearly unintelligible to him, for it was arcane. Nevertheless, Jerome coolly sets down every commentary upon it but his own as heretical. More than that, Jerome knew that this Gospel was the only original one, yet he becomes more zealous than ever in his persecution of the “Heretics.” Why? Because to accept it was equivalent to reading the death sentence of the established Church. The Gospel according to the Hebrews was well known to have been the (Page 150) only one accepted for four centuries by the Jewish Christians, the Nazarenes and the Ebionites. And neither of the latter accepted the divinity of Christ. [ Isis Unveiled. II, 182-3.]
The Ebionites were the first, the earliest Christians, whose representative was the Gnostic author of the Clementine Homilies, and as the author of Supernatural Religion shows, 8 [Op. cit., II, 5] Ebionitic Gnosticism had once been the purest form of Christianity. They were the pupils and followers of the early Nazarenes - the kabalistic Gnostics. They believed in the Aeons, as the Cerinthians did, and that “the world was put together by Angels” (Dhyan Chohans), as Epiphanius complains (Contra Ebionitas) : “Ebion had the opinion of the Nazarenes, the form of Cerinthians.” “They decided that Christ was of the seed of a man,” he laments. [ See also Isis Unveiled, ii. 180, to end of chapter.] Thus again:
The badge of Dan-Scorpio is death-life, in the symbol .as crossbones and skull , . . or life-death . . . the standard of Constantine, the Roman Emperor. Abel has been shown to be Jesus, and Cain-Vulcain, or Mars, pierced him. Constantine was the Roman Emperor, whose warlike god was Mars, and a Roman soldier pierced Jesus on the cross . . . .
But the piercing of Abel was the consummation of his marriage with Cain, and this was proper under the form of Mars Generator; hence the double glyph, one of Mars-Generator [Osiris-Sun] and Mars-Destroyer [Mercury the God of Death in the Egyptian basso-relievo] in one; significant, again, of the primal idea of the living cosmos, or of birth and death, as necessary to the continuation of the stream of life. [ Source of Measure, p.299. This “stream of life” being emblematised in the Philloc basso-relievo just mentioned, by the water poured in the shape of a Cross on the initiated candidate by Osiris - Life and the Sun - and Mercury - Death. It was the finale of the rite of Initiation after the seven and the twelve tortures in the Crypts of Egypt were passed through successfully.]
To quote once more from Isis Unveiled:
A Latin cross of a perfect Christian shape was found hewn upon the granite slabs of the Adytum of the Serapeum; and the monks did not fail to claim that the cross had been hallowed by the Pagans in a “spirit of prophecy.” At least, Sozomen, with an air of triumph, records the fact. [ Another untrustworthy, untruthful and ignorant writer, an ecclesiastical historian of the fifth century. His alleged history of the strife between the Pagans, Neoplatonists, and the Christians of Alexandria and Constantinople, which extends from the year 324 to 439, dedicated by him to Theodosius, the younger, is full of deliberate falsifications.] But archaeology and symbolism, those tireless and implacable enemies of clerical false pretences, have found in the hieroglyphics of the legend running round the design at least a partial interpretation of its meaning.
According to King and other numismatists and archaeologists, the cross was placed there as the symbol of eternal life.
The Cross and Crucifix
(Page 151) Such a Tau, or Egyptian cross, was used in the Bacchic and Eleusinian Mysteries. Symbol of the dual generative power, it was laid upon the breast of the Initiate, after his “new birth” was accomplished, and the Mystae had returned from their baptism in the sea. It was a mystic sign that his spiritual birth had regenerated and united his astral soul with his divine spirit, and that he was ready to ascend in spirit to the blessed abodes of light and glory - the Eleusinia. The Tau was a magic talisman at the same time as a religious emblem. It was adopted by the Christians through the Gnostics and Kabalists, who used it largely, as their numerous gems testify. These in turn had the Tau (or handled cross) from the Egyptians, and the Latin Cross from the Buddhist missionaries, who brought it from India (where it can be found even now) two or three centuries B.C. The Assyrians, Egyptians, ancient Americans, Hindus and Romans had it in various, but very slight modifications of shape. Till very late in the middle ages, it was considered a potent spell against epilepsy and demoniacal possession, and the “signet of the living God” brought down in St. John’s vision by the angel ascending from the east to “seal the servants of our God in the foreheads,” was but the same mystic Tau - the Egyptian Cross. In the painted glass of St. Denis (France) this angel is represented as stamping this sign on the forehead of the elect; the legend reads, SIGNUM TAY. In King’s Gnostics, the author reminds us that “this mark is commonly borne by St. Anthony, an Egyptian recluse.” [ Gems of the Orthodox Christians. Vol. 1., p.135.] What the real meaning of the Tau was, is explained to us by the Christian St. John, the Egyptian Hermes, and the Hindu Brahmans. It is but too evident that, with the Apostle at least, it meant the “Ineffable Name,” as he calls this “signet of the living God” a few chapters further on [ Revelation, XIV, 1 ] “Father’s name written in their foreheads.”
The Brahmâtmâ the chief of the Hindu Initiates, had on his headgear two keys, symbol of the revealed mystery of life and death, placed cross-like; and in some Buddhist pagodas of Tartary and Mongolia, the entrance of a chamber within the temple, generally containing the staircase which leads to the inner dagoba. [ A Dagoba is a small temple of globular form, in which are preserved the relics of Gautama.] and the porticos of some Prachidas [ Prachidas are buildings of all sizes and forms, like our mausoleums, and are sacred to votive offerings to the dead.] are ornamented with a cross formed of two fishes, as found on some of the zodiacs of the Buddhists. We should not wonder at all at learning that the sacred device in the tombs in the catacombs at Rome, the “Vesica Piscis,” was derived from the said Buddhist zodiacal sign. How general must have been that geometrical figure in the world-symbols, may be inferred from the fact that there is a Masonic tradition that Solomon’s temple was built on three foundations, forming the “triple Tau” or three crosses.
In its mystical sense, the Egyptian cross owes its origin, as an emblem, to the realisation by the earliest philosophy of an androgynous dualism of every manifestation in nature, which proceeds from the abstract ideal of a likewise androgynous deity, while the Christian emblem is simply due to chance. Had the Mosaic law (Page 152) prevailed, Jesus should have been lapidated. [ The Talmudistic records claim that, after having been hanged, he was lapidated and buried under the water at the junction of two streams. Mishna Sanhedrin, Vol. V1., p.4: Talmud, of Babylon, same article, 43a, 67a. ] The crucifix was an instrument of torture, and utterly common among Romans as it was unknown among Semitic nations. It was called the “Tree of Infamy.” It is but later that it was adopted as a Christian symbol; but during the first two decades the apostles looked upon it with horror.[ Coptic Legends of the Crucifixion. MSS. XI ]. It is certainly not the Christian Cross that John had in mind when speaking of the “signet of the living God,” but the mystic Tau - the Tetragrammaton, or mighty name, which, on the most ancient Kabalistic talismans, was represented by the four Hebrew letters composing the Holy Word.
The famous Lady Ellenborough, known among the Arabs of Damascus, and in the desert, after her last marriage, as Hanoum Medjouye, had a talisman in her possession, presented to her by a Druse from Mount Lebanon. It was recognised by a certain sign on its left corner as belonging to that class of gems which is known in Palestine as a “Messianic” amulet, of the second or third century B.C. It is a green stone of a pentagonal form; at the bottom is engraved a fish, higher, Solomon’s Seal; [ We are at a loss to understand why King, in his Gnostic Gems, represents Solomon’s Seal as a five-pointed star, whereas it is six-pointed, and is the signet of Vishnu in India.] and still higher, the four Chaldaic letters - Jod, He, Vau, He, IAHO, which form the name of the Deity. These are arranged in quite an unusual way, running from below upward, in reversed order, and forming the Egyptian Tau. Around these there is a legend which, as the gem is not our property, we are not at liberty to give. The Tau, in its mystical sense, as well as the Crux ansata, is the Tree of Life.
It is well known that the earliest Christian emblems - before it was ever attempted to represent the bodily appearance of Jesus - were the Lamb, the Good Shepherd, and The Fish. The origin of the latter emblem, which has so puzzled the archaeologists, thus becomes comprehensible. The whole secret lies in the easily ascertained fact that, while in the Kabalah the King Messiah is called “Interpreter,” or Revealer of the Mystery, and shown to be the fifth emanation, in the Talmud - for reasons we will now explain - the Messiah is very often designated as “DAG,” or the Fish. This is an inheritance from the Chaldees, and relates - as the very name indicates - to the Babylonian Dagon, the man-fish, who was the instructor and interpreter of the people, to whom he appeared. Abarbanel explains the name, by stating that the sign of his (Messiah’s) coming is the conjuction of Saturn and Jupiter in the sign Pisces. [ King (Gnostics) gives the figure of a Christian symbol, very common during the middle ages of three fishes, interlaced into a triangle, and having the FIVE letters (a most sacred Pythagorean number) ΙΧΘΥΧ engraved on it. The number five relates to the same kabalistic computation.] Therefore, as the Christians were intent upon identifying their Christos with the Messiah of the Old Testament, they adopted it so readily as to forget that its true origin might be traced still further back than the Babylonian Dagon. How eagerly and closely the ideal of Jesus was united, by the early Christians, with every imaginable kabalistic and pagan tenet, may be inferred from the language of Clemens, of Alexandria, addressed to his co-religionists.
The Story of Jesus
(Page 153) When they were debating upon the choice of the most appropriate symbol to remind them of Jesus, Clemens advised them in the following words. Let the engraving upon the gem of your ring be either a dove or a ship running before the wind (the Argha), or a fish.” Was the good father, when writing this sentence, labouring under the recollection of Joshua, son of Nun (called Jesus in the Greek and Slavonian versions); or had he forgotten the real interpretation of these pagan symbols? [ Op. cit.,II 253-256. ]
And now, with the help of all these passages scattered hither and thither in Isis and other works of this kind, the reader will see and judge for himself which of the two explanations - the Christian or that of the Occultist - is the nearer to truth. If Jesus were not an Initiate, why should all these allegorical incidents of his life be given? Why should such extreme trouble be taken, so much time wasted trying to make the above: (a) answer and dovetail with purposely picked out sentences in the Old Testament, to show them as prophecies; and (b) to preserve in them the initiatory symbols, the emblems so pregnant with Occult meaning and all of these belonging to Pagan mystic Philosophy? The author of the Source of Measures gives out that mystical intent; but only once now and again, in its one-sided, numerical and kabalistic meaning, without paying any attention to, or having concern with, the primeval and more spiritual origin, and he deals with it only so far as it related to the Old Testament. He attributes the purposed change in the sentence “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani” to the principle already mentioned of the crossed bones and skull in the Labarum.
As an emblem of death, being placed over the door of life and signifying birth, or of the intercontainment of two opposite principles in one, just as, mystically, the Saviour was held to be man-woman. [ Op. cit., 301. All this connects Jesus with great Initiates and solar heroes: all this is purely Pagan, under a newly-evolved variation, the Christian scheme.].
The author's idea is to show the mystic blending by the Gospel writers of Jehovah, Cain, Abel, etc., with Jesus (in accordance with Jewish kabalistic numeration); the better he succeeds, the more clearly he shows that it was a forced blending, and that we have not a record of the real events of the life of Jesus, narrated by eyewitnesses or the Apostles. The narrative is all based on the signs of the Zodiac:
Each a double sign or male-female [ in ancient astrological Magic] - viz.: it was Taurus-Eve, and Scorpio was Mars-Lupa, or Mars with the female wolf [ in relation to Romulus]. (Page 154) So, as these signs were opposites of each other, yet met in the centre, they were connected; and so in fact it was, and in a double sense, the conception of the year was in Taurus, as the conception of Eve by Mars, her opposite, in Scorpio. The birth would be at the winter solstice, or Christmas. On the contrary, by conception in Scorpio - viz., of Lupa by Taurus - birth would be in Leo. Scorpio was Chrestos in humiliation, while Leo was Christos in triumph. While Taurus-Eve fulfilled astronomical functions, Mars-Lupa fulfilled spiritual ones by type. [ Op. cit.,296.]
The author bases all this on Egyptian correlations and meanings of Gods and Goddesses, but ignores the Aryan, which are far earlier.
Mooth or Mouth, was the Egyptian cognomen of Venus, (Eve, mother of all living) [as Vach, mother of all living, a permutation of Aditi, as Eve was one of Sephira] or the moon. Plutarch (Isis, 374) hands it down that Isis was sometimes called Muth, which word means mother . . . (Issa, חשא woman). (Isis, p.372). Isis, he says is that part of Nature, which, as feminine, contains in herself, as (nutrix) nurse, all things to be born. . . “Certainly the moon, “ speaking astronomically, “chiefly exercises this function in Taurus, Venus being the house (in opposition to Mars, generator, in Scorpio), because the sign is luna, hypsoma. Since. . . Isis Metheur differs from Isis Muth and that in the vocable Muth the notion of bringing forth may be concealed and since fructification must take place, Sol being joined with Luna in Libra, it is not improbable that Muth first indeed signifies Venus in Libra; hence Luna in Libra. (Beiträge zur Kenntniss, pars 11, S. 9, under Muth.) [ Pp. 294. 295.]
Then Fuerst, under Bohu, is quoted to show
The double play upon the word Muth by help of which the real intent is produced in the occult way . . . sin, death, and woman are one in the glyph, and correlatively connected with intercourse and death. [ P.295.]
All this is applied by the author only to the exoteric and Jewish euhemerised symbols, whereas they were meant, first of all, to conceal cosmogonical mysteries, and then, those of anthropological evolution with reference to the Seven Races, already evoluted and to come, and especially as regards the last branch races of the third Root-Race. However, the word void [primeval Chaos] is shown to be taken for Eve-Venus-Naamah, agreeably with Fuerst’s definition; for as he says:
In this primitive signification [ of void] was (bohu) taken in the Biblical cosmogony, and used in establishing the dogma [Jes(us) m’aven, Jes-us from nothing] respecting creation. (Which shows the writers of the New Testament considerably skilled in the Kabalah and Occult Sciences, and corroborates still more our assertion.) Hence Aquila translates ουδεν vulg. vacua (hence vacca, cow) [hence also the horns of Isis - Nature, Earth, and the Moon - taken from Vàch, the Hindu “Mother of all that lives,” identified with Viràj and called in Atharvaveda the daughter of Kàma, the first desires: “That daughter of thine, O kàma, is called the cow, she whom Sages name Vach-Viraj,” who was milked by Brihaspati, the Rishi, which is another mystery] Onkelos and Samarit
The Primitive Woman- (Page 155) The Phoenician cosmogony has connected Bohu βαανBaav into a personified expression denoting the primitive substance, and as a deity, the mother of races of the Gods [ which is Aditi and Vach]. The Aramean name βαφσς, Buto, for the mother of the gods, which passed over to the Gnostics, Babylonians and Egyptians, is identical then with Môt (., our Muth) properly, ( βωθoriiginated in Phoenician from an interchange of b with m. [ Pp. 295. 296 ]
Rather, one would say, go to the origin. The mystic euhemerisation of Wisdom and Intelligence, operating in the work of cosmic evolution, or Buddhi under the names of Brahma, Purusha, etc., as male power, and Aditi-Vàch, etc., as female, whence Sarasvati, Goddess of Wisdom, who became under the veils of Esoteric concealment, Butos, Bythos - Depth, the grossly material, personal female, called Eve, the “primitive woman” of Irenaeus, and the world springing out of Nothing.
The workings out of this glyph of 4th Genesis help to the comprehension of the division of one character into the forms of two persons; as Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Abram and Isaac, Jacob and Esau, and so on [all male and female] . . . Now, as linking together several great salient points in the Biblical structure: (1) as to the Old and New Testament; with also (2) as to the Roman Empire; (3) as to confirming the meaning and uses of symbols; and (4) as to confirming the entire explanation and reading of the glyphs; as (5) recognizing and laying down the base of the great pyramid as the foundation square of the Bible construction; (6) as well as the new Roman adoption under Constantine - the following given: [ Had we known the learned author before his book was printed, he might have been perchance prevailed upon to add a seventh link from which all others, far preceding those enumerated in point of time, and surpassing them in universally philosophical meaning, have been derived, aye, even to the great pyramid, whose foundation square was, in its turn, the great Aryan Mysteries.]
Cain has been shown to be . . . the 360 circle of the Zodiac, the perfect and exact standard, b a squared division; hence his name of Melchizadik . . . [The geometrical and numerical demonstrations here follow.] It has been repeatedly stated that the object of the Great Pyramid construction was to measure the heavens and the earth . . . (the objective spheres as evoluting from the subjective, purely spiritual Kosmos, we beg leave to add); therefore, its measuring containment would indicate all the substance of measure of the heaven and the earth, or agreeably to ancient recognition, Earth, Air, Water and Fire.[ We would say cosmic Matter, Spirit, Chaos, and Divine Light, for the Egyptians idea was identical in this with the Aryan. However, the author is right with regard to the Occult Symbology of the Jews. They were a remarkably matter of fact, unspiritual people at all times, yet even with them “Ruach” was Divine Spirit, not “air.”] (The base side of this pyramid was diameter to a circumference in feet of 2400. The characteristic of this is 24 feet, or 6 X 4 = 24, or this very Cain-Adam square.) Now, by the restoration of the encampment of the Israelites, as initiated by Moses, by the great scholar,( Page 156) Father Athanasius Kircher, the Jesuit priest, the above is precisely by Biblical record and traditionary sources, the method of laying off this encampment. The four interior squares were devoted to (1) Moses and Aaron; (2) Kohath; (3) Gershom; and (4) Merari - the last three being the head of the Levites. The attributes of these squares were the primal attributes of Adam-Mars and were concreted of the elements, Earth, Air, Fire, Water, or = Iam = Water, . Nour = Fire, = Rouach = Air, and = Iabeshah = Earth. The initial letters of these words are INRI. [The words translated as Iesus Nazarenus Rex Iudaeorum - “Jesus, King of the Jews.”] This square of INRI is the Adam square, which was extended from, as a foundation, into four others of 145 X 2 = 288, to the side of the large square of 288 X 4 = 115 -2, = the whole circumference. But this square is the display of also circular elements and 115-2 can denote this. Put INRI into a circle, or read it as the letters stand in the square, as to its value of 1521, and we have which reads 115-2 of this fact.
But as seen Cain denotes this as, or in, the 115 of his name: which 115 was the very complement to make up the 360 day year, to agree with the balances of the standard circle, which were Cain. The corner squares of the larger square are, A = Leo, and B = Dan Scorpio; and it is seen that Cain pierces Abel at the intersection of the equinoctial with the solstice cross lines, referred to from Dan-Scorpio on the celestial circle. But Dan-Scorpio borders on Libra, the scales, whose sign is (which sign is that of the ancient pillow on which the back of the head to the ears[ Mr Ralston Skinner shows that the symbol the crossed bones and skull, has the letter P Koph, the half of the head behind the ears.] rested, the pillow of Jacob), and is represented for one symbol as Also the badge of Dan-Scorpio is death-life, in the symbol Now the cross is the emblem of the origin of measures, in the Jehovah form of a straight line ONE of a denomination of 20612, the perfect circumference; hence Cain was this as Jehovah, for the text says that he was Jehovah. But the attachment of a man to this cross was that of 113: 355 to 6561: 5153 X 4 = 20612, as shown. Now, over the head of Jesus crucified was placed the inscription, of which the initial letters of the words have always been retained as symbolic, and handed down and used as a monogram of Jesus Chrestos - viz., INRI or Jesus Nazarenus Rex Judaeorum; but they are located on the Cross, or the cubed form of the circular origin of measures which measure the substance of Earth, Air, Fire and Water, or INRI = 1152, as shown. Here is the man on the cross, or 113; 355 combined with 6561: 5153 X 4 = 20612. These are the pyramid-base numbers as coming from 113: 355 as the Hebrew source; whence the Adam-square, which is the pyramid base, and the centre one to the larger square of the encampment. Bend INRI into a circle, and we have 1152, or the circumference of the latter. But Jesus dying ( or Abel married) made use of the very words needed to set forth all. He says, Eli, Eli, Lama Sabachthani . . . Read them by their power values, in circular form, as produced from the Adam form as shown, and we have .. = 113, = 113, or 113-311: = 345, or Moses in the Cain-Adam pyramid circle: = 710, equals Dove, or Jonah and 710 divided by 2 = 355, or 355 -553: and finally, as determinative of all or ni......... where = nun, fish = 565, and = 1 or 10; together 565 . = or the Christ value.
Kabalistic Reading of Gospels- (Page 157) [All of the above] throws light on the transfiguration scene on the mount. There were present there Peter and James and John with Jesus; or Iami, James, Water; , Peter, Earth , John, Spirit, Air, and , Jesus, Fire, Life - together INRI. But behold Eli and Moses met them there, or . and or Eli and Lamah, or 113 and 345. And this shows that the scene of transfiguration was connected with the one above set forth. [ Pp. 296 -302 . By these numbers, explains the author. “Eli is 113 (by placing the word in a circle): amah being 345, is by change of letters to suit the same value ( in a circle) or Moses, while Sabachth is John or the dove, or Holy Spirit, because (in a circle) it is 710 (or 355 X 2). The termination ni, as meni or 5651, becomes Jehovah.]
This kabalistical reading of the Gospel narratives - hitherto supposed to record the most important, the most mystically awful, yet most real events of the life of Jesus - must fall with terrible weight upon some Christians. Every honest trusting believer who has shed tears of reverential emotion over the events of the short period of the public life of Jesus of Nazareth, has to choose one of the two ways opening before him after reading the aforesaid: either his faith has to render him quite impervious to any light coming from human reasoning and evident fact; or he must confess that he has lost his Saviour. The One whom he had hitherto considered as the unique incarnation on this earth of the One Living God in heaven, fades into thin air, on the authority of the properly read and correctly interpreted Bible itself. Moreover, since on the authority of Jerome himself and his accepted and authentic confession, the book written by the hand of Matthew “exhibits matter not for edification but for destruction” (of Church and human Christianity, and only that) what truth can be expected from his famous Vulgate? Human mysteries, concocted by generations of Church Fathers bent upon evolving a religion of their own invention, are seen instead of a divine Revelation; and that this was so is corroborated by a prelate of the Latin Church. Saint Gregory Nazianzen wrote to his friend and confidant, St. Jerome:
Nothing can impose better on a people than verbiage; the less they understand the more they admire . . . Our fathers and doctors have often said, not what they thought, but that to which circumstances and necessity forced them.
(Page 158) Which then of the two - clergy, or the Occultists and Theosophists - are the more blasphemous and dangerous? Is it those who would impose upon the world’s acceptance a Saviour of their own fashioning, a God with human shortcomings, and who therefore is certainly not a perfect divine Being; or those others who say: Jesus of Nazareth was in Initiate, a holy, grand and noble character, but withal human, though truly “a Son of God”?
If Humanity is to accept a so-called supernatural Religion, how far more logical to the Occultist and the Psychologist seems the transparent allegory given of Jesus by the Gnostics. They, as Occultists, and with Initiates for their Chiefs, differed only in their renderings of the story and in their symbols, and not at all in substance. What say the Ophites, the Nazarenes, and other “heretics”? Sophia, “the Celestial Virgin,” is prevailed upon to send Christos, her emanation, to the help of perishing humanity, from whom Ilda-Baoth (the Jehovah of the Jews) and his six Sons of Matter (the lower terrestrial Angels) are shutting out the divine light. Therefore, Christos, the perfect, [ The Western personification of that power, which the Hindus call the Vija, the “one seed,” or Maha Vishnu - a power, not the God - or that mysterious Principle that contains in itself the Seed of Avatârism.]
Uniting himself with Sophia [divine wisdom] descended through the seven planetary regions, assuming in each an analogous form . . . [and] entered into the man Jesus at the moment of his baptism in the Jordan. From this time forth Jesus began to work miracles; before that he had been entirely ignorant of his own mission.
Ilda-Baoth, discovering that Christos was bringing to an end his kingdom of Matter, stirred up the Jews, his own people, against Him, and Jesus was put to death. When Jesus was on the Cross Christos and Sophia left His body, and returned to Their own sphere. The material body of Jesus was abandoned to the earth, but He Himself, the Inner Man, was clothed with a body made up of aether. [ Arise into Nervi from this decrepit body into which thou hast been sent. Ascend into thy former abode, O blessed Avatâr!”]
Thenceforth he consisted merely of soul and spirit . . . During his sojourn upon earth of eighteen months after he had risen, he received from Sophia that perfect knowledge, that true Gnosis, which he communicated to the small portion of the Apostles who were capable of receiving the same. [ The Gnostics and their Remains. King. pp.100, 101.]
The above is transparently Eastern and Hindu; it is the Esoteric Doctrine pure and simple, save for the names and the allegory. It is, more or less, the history of every Adept who obtains Initiation.
Universal Teachings- (Page 159) The Baptism in the Jordan is the Rite of Initiation, the final purification, whether in sacred pagoda, tank, river, or temple lake in Egypt or Mexico. The perfect Christos and Sophia - divine Wisdom and Intelligence - enter the Initiate at the moment of the mystic rite, by transference from Guru to Chela, and leave the physical body, at the moment of the death of the latter, to re-enter the Nirmânakâya, or the astral Ego of the Adept.
The spirit of Buddha [collectively] overshadows the Bodhisattvas of his Church says the Buddhist Ritual of Aryasangha.
Says the Gnostic teaching:
When he [ the spirit of Christos] shall have collected all the Spiritual, all the Light [ that exists in matter], out of Ildabaoth’s empire, Redemption is accomplished and the end of the world arrived. [ Loc. Cit.]
Say the Buddhists;
When Buddha [the Spirit of the Church] hears the hour strike, he will send Maitreya Buddha - after whom the old world will be destroyed.
That which is said of Basilides by King may be applied as truthfully to every innovator, so called, whether of a Buddhist or of a Christian Church. In the eyes of Clemens Alexandrinus, he says, the Gnostics taught very little that was blameable in their mystical transcendental views.
In his eyes the latter (Basilides), was not a heretic, that is an innovator upon the accepted doctrines of the Catholic Church, but only a theosophic speculator who sought to express old truths by new formulae. [ Op. cit.,p. 258.]
There was a Secret Doctrine preached by Jesus; and “secrecy” in those days meant Secrets, or Mysteries of Initiation, all of which have been either rejected or disfigured by the Church. In the Clementine Homilics we read:
And Peter said: “We remember that our Lord and Teacher, commanding us, said ‘Guard the mysteries for me and the sons of my house.’” Wherefore also he explained to His disciples privately the Mysteries of the Kingdom of the Heavens.[ Homilies XIX. XX,I ]
St. Cyprian of Antioch
(Page 160) THE Aeons (Stellar Spirits) - emanated from the Unknown of the Gnostics, and identical with the Dhyan Chohans of the Esoteric Doctrine - and their Pleroma, having been transformed into Archangels and the “Spirits of the Presence” by the Greek and Latin Churches, the prototypes have lost caste. The Pleroma[ The Pleroma constituted the synthesis or entirety of all the spiritual entities. St. Paul still used the name in his Epistles.] was now called the “Heavenly Host,” and therefore the old name had to become identified with Satan and his “Host.” Might is right in every age, and History is full of contrasts. Manes has been called the “Paraclete” [ The “Comforter,” second Messiah, intercessor. “A term applied to the Holy Ghost.” Manes was the disciple of Terebinthus, an Egyptian Philosopher, who, according to the Christian Socrates (1.i., cited by Tillemont, iv. 584). “while invoking one day the demons of the air, fell from the roof of his house and was killed.”] by his followers. He was an Occultist, but passed to posterity, owing to the kind exertions of the Church, as a Sorcerer, so a match had to be found for him by way of contrast. We recognise this match in St. Cyprianus of Antioch, a self-confessed if not a real “Black Magician,” it seems, whom the Church - as a reward for his contrition and humility - subsequently raised to the high rank of Saint and Bishop.
What history knows of him is not much, and it is mostly based on his own confession, the truthfulness of which is warranted, we are told, by St. Gregory, the Empress Eudoxia, Photius and the Holy Church. This curious document was ferreted out by the Marquis de Mirville, [Cy.Op. cit.,vi, 169-183.] in the Vatican, and by him translated into French for the first time, as he assures the reader. We beg his permission to retranslate a few pages, not for the sake of the penitent Sorcerer, but for that of some students of Occultism, who will thus have an opportunity of comparing the methods of ancient Magic (or as the Church calls it, Demonism) with those of modern Theurgy and Occultism.
Magic in Antioch- (Page 161) The scenes described took place at Antioch about the middle of the third century, 252 A.D., says the translator. This Confession was written by the penitent Sorcerer after his conversion; therefore, we are not surprised to find how much room he gives in his lamentations to reviling his Initiator “Satan,” or the “Serpent Dragon,” as he calls him. There are other and more modern instances of the same trait in human nature. Converted Hindus, Parsis and other “heathen” of India are apt to denounce their forefathers’ religions at every opportunity. Thus runs the Confession:
O all of you who reject the real mysteries of Christ, see my tears! . . .You who wallow in your demoniacal practices, learn by my sad example all the vanity of their [the demons’] baits . . . I am that Cyprianus, who, vowed to Apollo from his infancy, was early initiated into all the arts of the dragon. [“The great serpent placed to watch the temple,” comments de Mirville. “How often have we repeated that it was no symbol, no personification but really a serpent occupied by a god!” - he exclaims; and we answer that at Cairo in a Mussulman, not a heathen temple, we have seen, as thousands of other visitors have also seen, a huge serpent that lived there for centuries, we were told, and was held in great respect. Was it also “occupied by a God,” or possessed, in other words?] Even before the age of seven I had already been introduced into the temple of Mithra: three years later, my parents taking me to Athens to be received as citizen, I was permitted likewise to penetrate the mysteries of Ceres lamenting her daughter,[ The Mysteries of Demeter, or the "afflicted mother".] and I also became the guardian of the Dragon in the Temple of Pallas.
Ascending after that to the summit of Mount Olympus, the Seat of the Gods, as it is called, there too I was initiated into the sense, and the real meaning of their [the Gods’] speeches and their clamorous manifestations (strepituum). It is there that I was made to see in imagination (phantasia) [or mayâ] those trees and all those herbs that operate such prodigies with the help of demons; . . . and I saw their dances, their warfares, their snares, illusions and promiscuities. I heard their singing. [ By the satyrs.] I saw finally, for forty consecutive days, the phalanx of the Gods and Goddesses, sending from Olympus, as though they were Kings, spirits to represent them on earth and act in their name among all the nations. [ This looks rather suspicious and seems interpolated. De Mirville tries to have what he says of Satan and his Court sending their imps on earth to tempt humanity and masquerade at seances corroborated by the ex-sorcerer.]
At that time I lived entirely on fruit, eaten only after sunset, the virtues of which were explained to me by the seven priests of the sacrifices. [ This does not look like sinful food. It is the diet of Chelas to this day.]
When I was fifteen my parents desired that I should be made acquainted, not only with all the natural laws in connection with the generation and corruption of (Page 162) bodies on earth, in the air and in the seas, but also with all the other forces grafted [“Grafted” is the correct expression. “The seven Builders graft the divine and the beneficent forces on to the gross material nature of the vegetable and mineral kingdoms every Second Round - says the Catechism of Lanoos.] (insitas) on these by the Prince of the World in order to counteract their primal and divine constitution. [ Only the Prince of the World is not Satan, as the translator would make us believe, but the collective Host of the Planetary. This is a little theological backbiting.] At twenty I went to Memphis, where, penetrating into the Sanctuaries, I was taught to discern all that pertains to the communications of demons [Daimones or Spirits] with terrestrial matters, their aversion for certain places, they sympathy and attraction for others, their expulsion from certain planets, certain objects and laws, their persistence in preferring darkness and their resistance to light. [ Here the Elemental and Elementary Spirits are evidently meant.] There I learned the number of the fallen Princes, [ The reader has already learned the truth about them in the course of the present work.] that which takes place in human souls and the bodies they enter into communication with.
I learnt the analogy that exists between earthquakes and the rains, between the motion of the earth [ Pity the penitent Saint had not imparted his knowledge of the rotation of the earth and heliocentric system earlier to his Church. That might have saved more than one human life - that of Bruno for one.] and the motion of the seas; I saw the spirits of the Giants plunged in subterranean darkness and seemingly supporting the earth like a man carrying a burden on is shoulders. [ Chelas in their trials of initiation, also see in trances artificially generated for them, the vision of the Earth supported by an elephant on the top of a tortoise standing on nothing - and this, to teach them to discern the true from the false.].
When thirty I travelled to Chaldaea to study there the true power of the air, placed by some in the fire and by the more learned in light [Akâsha]. I was taught to see that the planets were in their variety as dissimilar as the plants on earth, and the stars were like armies ranged in battle order. I knew the Chaldaean division of Ether into 365 parts, [ Relating to the days of the year, also to 7X7 divisions of the earth’s sublunary sphere, divided into seven upper and seven lower spheres with their respective Planetary Hosts or “armies.”] and I perceived that everyone of the demons who divide it among themselves [ Daimon is not “demon,” as translated by De Mirville, but Spirit. ] was endowed with that material force that permitted him to execute the orders of the Prince and guide all the movements therein [in the Ether]. [ All this is to corroborate his dogmatic assertions that Pater Aether or Jupiter is Satan! and that pestilential diseases, cataclysms, and even thunderstorms that prove disastrous, come from the Satanic Host dwelling in Ether - a good warning to the men of Science! ] They [the Chaldees] explained to me how those Princes had become participants in the Council of Darkness, ever in opposition to the Council of Light.
I got acquainted with the Mediatores [surely not mediums as De Mirville explains! ] [ The translator replaces the word Mediators by mediums, excusing himself in a footnote by saying that Cyprian must have meant modern mediums!] and upon seeing the covenants they were mutually bound by, I was struck with wonder upon learning the nature of their oaths and observances.[ Cypriannus simply meant to hint at the rites and mysteries of Initiation, and the pledge of secrecy and oaths that bound the Initiates together. His translator, however, has made a Witches Sabbath of it instead.]
Sorcerer Become Saint
(Page 163) Believe me, I saw the Devil; believe me I have embraced him [“Twelve centuries later, in full renaissance and reform, the world saw Luther do the same [embrace the Devil he means? ] - according to his own confession and in the same conditions,” explains De Mirville in a footnote, showing thereby the brotherly love that binds Christians. Now Cyprianus meant by the Devil (if the word is really in the original text) his Initiator and Hierophant. No Saint - even a penitent Sorcerer - would be so silly as to speak of his (the Devil’s ) rising from his seat to see him to the door, were it otherwise.] [like the witches at the Sabbath (?)] when I was yet young, and he saluted me by the title of the new Jambres, declaring me worthy of my ministry (initiation). He promised me continual help during life and a principality after death. [ Every Adept has a “principality after his death.”] Having become in great honour (an Adept) under his tuition, he placed under my orders a phalanx of demons, and when I bid him goodbye, “Courage, good success, excellent Cyprian,” he exclaimed, rising up from his seat to see me to the door, plunging thereby those present into a profound admiration. [ Which shows that it was the Hierophant and his disciples. Cyprianus shows himself as grateful as most of the other converts (the modern included) to his Teachers and Instructors.
Having bidden farewell to his Chaldaean Initiator, the future Sorcerer and Saint went to Antioch. His tale of “iniquity” and subsequent repentance is long but we will make it short. He became “an accomplished Magician,” surrounded by a host of disciples and “candidates to the perilous and sacrilegious art.” He shows himself distributing love-philtres and dealing in deathly charms “to rid young wives of old husbands, and to ruin Christian virgins.” Unfortunately Cyprianus was not above love himself. He fell in love with the beautiful Justine, a converted maiden, after having vainly tried to make her share the passion one named Aglaides, a profligate, had for her. His “demons failed” he tells us, and he got disgusted with them. This disgust brings on a quarrel between him and his Hierophant, whom he insists on indentifying with the Demon; and the dispute is followed by a tournament between the latter and some Christian converts, in which the “Evil One” is, of course, worsted. The Sorcerer is finally baptised and gets rid of his enemy. Having laid at the feet of Anthimes, Bishop of Antioch, all his books on Magic, he became a Saint in company with the beautiful Justine, who had converted him; both suffered martyrdom under the Emperor Diocletian; and both are buried side by side in Rome, in the Basilica of St. John Lateran, near the Baptistery.
The Eastern Gupta Vidya & The Kabalah
(Page 164) WE now return to the consideration of the essential identity between the Eastern Gupta Vidya and the Kabalah as a system, while we must also show the dissimilarity in their philosophical interpretations since the Middle Ages.
It must be confessed that the views of the Kabalists - meaning by the word those students of Occultism who study the Jewish Kabalah and who know little, if anything, of any other Esoteric literature or of its teachings - are as varied in their synthetic conclusions upon the nature of the mysteries taught even in the Zohar alone, and are as wide of the true mark, as are the dicta upon it of exact Science itself. Like the mediaeval Rosicrucian and the Alchemist - like the Abbot Trithemius, John Reuchlin, Agrippa, Paracelsus, Robert Fludd, Philalethes, etc. - by whom they swear, the continental Occultists see in the Jewish Kabalah alone the universal well of wisdom; they find in it the secret lore of nearly all the mysteries of Nature - metaphysical and divine - some of them including herein, as did Reuchlin, those of the Christian Bible. For them the Zohar is an Esoteric Thesaurus of all the mysteries of the Christian Gospel; and the Sephyr Yetsirah is the light that shines in every darkness, and the container of the keys to open every secret in Nature. Whether many of our modern followers of the mediaeval Kabalists have an idea of the real meaning of the symbology of their chosen Masters is another question. Most of them have probably never given even a passing thought to the fact that the Esoteric language used by the Alchemists was their own, and that it was given out as a blind, necessitated by the dangers of the epoch they lived in, and not as the Mystery-language, used by the Pagan Initiates, which the Alchemists had retranslated and re-veiled once more.
A Mystery Within a Mystery- (Page 165) And now the situation stands thus: as the old Alchemists have not left a key to their writings, the latter have become a mystery within an older mystery. The Kabalah is interpreted and checked only by the light which mediaeval Mystics have thrown upon it, and they, in their forced Christology, had to put a theological dogmatic mask on every ancient teaching, the result being that each Mystic among our modern European and American Kabalists interprets the old symbols in his own way, and each refers his opponents to the Rosicrucian and the Alchemist of three and four hundred years ago. Mystic Christian dogma is the central maelstrom that engulfs every old Pagan symbol, and Christianity - Anti-Gnostic Christianity, the modern retort that has replaced the alembic of the Alchemists - has distilled out of all recognition the Kabalah, i.e., the Hebrew Zohar and other rabbinical mystic works. And now it has come to this: The student interested in the Secret Sciences has to believe that the whole cycle of the symbolical “Ancient of Days,” every hair of the mighty beard of Macroprosopos, refers only to the history of the earthly career of Jesus of Nazareth! And we are told that the Kabalah “was first taught to a select company of angels” by Jehovah himself - who, out of modesty, one must think, made himself only the third Sephiroth in it, and a female one into the bargain. So many Kabalists, so many explanations. Some believe - perchance with more reason than the rest - that the substance of the Kabalah is the basis upon which masonry is built, since modern Masonry is undeniable the dim and hazy reflection of primeval Occult Masonry, of the teaching of those divine Masons who established the Mysteries of the prehistoric and prediluvian Temples of Initiation, raised by truly superhuman Builders. Others declare that the tenets expounded in the Zohar relate merely to mysteries terrestrial and profane, having no more concern with metaphysical speculations - such as the soul, or the post-mortem life of man - than have the Mosaic books. Others, again - and these are the real, genuine Kabalists, who had their instructions from initiated Jewish Rabbis - affirm that if the two most learned Kabalists of the mediaeval period, John Reuchlin and Paracelsus, differed in their religious professions - the former being the Father of the Reformation and the latter a Roman Catholic, at least in appearance - the Zohar cannot contain much of Christian dogma or tenet, one way or the other. In other words, they maintain that the numerical language of the Kabalistic works teaches universal truths - and not any one Religion in particular. Those who make this (Page 166) statement are perfectly right in saying that the Mystery-language used in the Zohar and in other Kabalistic literature was once, in a time of unfathomable antiquity, the universal language of Humanity. But they become entirely wrong if to this fact they add the untenable theory that this language was invented by, or was the original property of, the Hebrews, from whom all the other nations borrowed it.
They are wrong, because, although the Zohar ( .) , The Book of Splendour of Rabbi Simeon Ben Iochai, did indeed originate with him - his son, Rabbi Eleazar, helped by his secretary, Rabbi Abba, compiling the Kabalistic teachings of his deceased father into a work called the Zohar - those teachings were not Rabbi Simeon’s, as the Gupta Vidya shows. They are as old as the Jewish nation itself. , and far older. In short, the writings which pass at present under the title of the Zohar of Rabbi Simeon are about as original as were the Egyptian synchronistic Tables after being handled by Eusebius, or as St. Paul’s Epistles after their revision and correction by the “Holy Church.” [ This is proved if we take but a single recorded instance. J. Picus de Mirandola, finding that there was more Christianity than Judaism in the Kabalah, and discovering in it the doctrines of the Trinity, the Incarnation, the Divinity of Jesus, etc., wound up his proofs of this with a challenge to the world at large from Rome. As Ginsburg shows: “In 1486, when only twenty-four years old, he [Pieus] published nine hundred [Kabalistic] theses, which were placarded in Rome, and undertook to defend them in the presence of all European scholars whom he invited to the Eternal City, promising to defray their travelling expenses.]
Let us throw a rapid retrospective glance at the history and the tribulations of that very same Zohar, as we know of them from trustworthy tradition and documents. We need not stop to discuss whether it was written in the first century B.C. , or in the first century A.D. Suffice it for us to know that there was at all times a Kabalistic literature among the Jews; that though historically it can be traced only from the time of the Captivity, yet from the Pentateuch down to the Talmud the documents of that literature were ever written in a kind of Mystery-language, were, in fact, a series of a symbolical records which the Jews had copied from the Egyptian and the Chaldaean Sanctuaries, only adapting them to their own national history - if history it can be called. Now that which we claim - and it is not denied even by the most prejudiced Kabalist, is that although Kabalistic lore had passed orally through long ages down to the latest Pre-Christian Tanaim, and although David and Solomon may have been great Adepts in it, as is claimed, yet no one dared to write it down till the days of Simeon Ben Iochai.
Authorship of the Zohar- (Page 167) In short, the lore found in Kabalistic literature was never recorded in writing before the first century of the modern era.
This brings the critic to the following reflection: While in India we find the Vedas and the Brahmanical literature written down and edited ages before the Christian era - the Orientalists themselves being obliged to concede a couple of millenniums of antiquity to the older manuscripts; while the most important allegories in Genesis are found recorded on Babylonian tiles centuries B.C.; while the Egyptian sarcophagi yearly yield proofs of the origin of the doctrines borrowed and copied by the Jews; yet the Monotheism of the Jews is exalted and thrown into the teeth of all the Pagan nations, and the so-called Christian Revelation is placed above all others, like the sun above a row of street gas lamps. Yet it is perfectly well known, having been ascertained beyond doubt or cavil, that no manuscript, whether Kabalistic, Talmudistic, or Christian, which has reached our present generation, is of earlier date than the first centuries of our era, whereas this can certainly never be said of the Egyptian papyri or the Chaldaean tiles, or even of some Eastern writings.
But let us limit our present research to the Kabalah, and chiefly to the Zohar - called also the Midrash. This book, whose teachings were edited for the first time between 70 and 110 A.D., is known to have been lost, and its contents to have been scattered throughout a number of minor manuscripts, until the thirteenth century. The idea that it was the composition of Moses de Leon of Valladolid, in Spain, who passed it off as a pseudograph of Simeon Ben Iochai, is ridiculous, and was well disposed of by Munk - though he does point to more than one modern interpolation in the Zohar. At the same time it is more than certain that the present Book of Zohar was written by Moses de Leon, and, owing to joint editorship, is more Christian in its colouring than is many a genuine Christian volume. Munk gives the reason why, saying that it appears evident that the author made use of ancient documents, and among these of certain Midraschim, or collections of traditions and Biblical expositions, which we do not now possess.
As a proof, also, that the knowledge of the Esoteric system taught in the Zohar came to the Jews very late indeed - at any rate, that they had so far forgotten it that the innovations and additions made by de Leon provoked no criticism, but were thankfully received - Munk quotes from Tholuck, a Jewish authority, the following information: Haya Gaon, who died in 1038, is to our knowledge the first author who developed (Page 168) (and perfected) the theory of the Sephiroth, and he gave them names which we find again among the Kabalistic names used by Dr. Jellinek. Moses Ben Schem-Tob de Leon, who held intimate intercourse with the Syrian and Chaldaean Christian learned scribes was enabled through the latter to acquire a knowledge of some of the Gnostic writings. [ This account is summarised from Isaac Myer’s Qabbalah, p.10 et seq.]
Again, the Sepher Jetzirah (Book of Creation) - though attributed to Abraham and though very archaic as to its contents - is first mentioned in the eleventh century by Jehuda Ho Levi (Chazari). And these two, the Zohar and Jetzirah, are the storehouse of all the subsequent Kabalistic works. Now let us see how far the Hebrew sacred canon itself is to be trusted.
The word “Kabalah” comes from the root “to receive,” and has a meaning identical with the Sanskrit “Smriti” (“received by tradition”) - a system of oral teaching, passing from one generation of priests to another, as was the case with the Brahmanical books before they were embodied in manuscript. The Kabalistic tenets came to the Jews from the Chaldaeans; and if Moses knew the primitive and universal language of the Initiates, as did every Egyptian priest, and was thus acquainted with the numerical system on which it was based, he may have - and we say he has - written Genesis and other “scrolls.” The five books that now pass current under his name, the Pentateuch, are not withal the original Mosaic Records. [ There is not in the decalogue one idea that is not the counterpart, or the paraphrase, of the dogmas and ethics among the Egyptians long before the time of Moses and Aaron. (The Mosaic Law a transcript from the Egyptian Sources: vide Geometry in Religion, 1890)] Nor were they written in the old Hebrew square letters, nor even in the Samaritan characters, for both alphabets belong to a date later than that of Moses, and Hebrew - as it is now known - did not exist in the days of the great lawgiver, either as a language or as an alphabet.
As no statements contained in the records of the Secret Doctrine of the East are regarded as of any value by the world in general, and since to be understood by and convince the reader one has to quote names familiar to him, and use arguments and proofs out of documents which are accessible to all, the following facts may perhaps demonstrate that our assertions are not merely based on the teachings of Occult Records.
Chaldaic and Hebrew ( Page 169) (1) The great Orientalist and scholar, Klaproth, denied positively the antiquity of the so-called Hebrew alphabet, on the ground that the square Hebrew characters in which the Biblical manuscripts are written, and which we use in printing, were probably derived from the Palmyrene writing, or some other Semitic alphabet, so that the Hebrew Bible is written merely in the Chaldaic phonographs of Hebrew words.
The late Dr. Kenealy pertinently remarked that the Jews and Christians rely on
A phonograph of a dead and almost unknown language, as abstruse as the cuneiform letters on the mountains of Assyria, [ Book of God. Kenealy, p.383. The reference to Klaproth is also from this page.]
(3) It is asserted that the Jews took their alphabet from the Babylonians during their captivity. But there are scholars who do not carry the now-known Hebrew square letters beyond the late period of the fourth century, A.D. [ See Asiat. Jour., N.S. vii., p.275, quoted by Kenealy.]
The Hebrew Bible is precisely as if Homer were printed, not in Greek, but in English letters; or as if Shakespeare’s works were phonographed in Burmese. [ Book of God, loc.cit.]
(4) Those who maintain that the ancient Hebrew is the same as the Syraic or Chaldaic have to see what is said in Jeremiah, wherein the Lord is made to threaten the house of Israel with bringing against it the mighty and ancient nation of the Chaldaeans:
A nation whose language thou knowest not, neither understandest what they say. [ Op.cit., v.15.]
This is quoted by Bishop Walton [ Prolegomena.iii, 13, quoted by Kenealy. p.385.] against the assumption of the identity of Chaldaic and Hebrew, and ought to settle the question.
(5) The real Hebrew of Moses was lost after the seventy years’ captivity, when the Israelites brought back Chaldaic with them and grafted it on their own language, the fusion resulting in a dialectical variety of Chaldaic, the Hebrew tincturing it very slightly and ceasing from that time to be a spoken language.[ See Book of God. p.385. Care should be taken, “ says Butler (quoted by Kenealy. p489), “ to distinguish between the Pentateuch in the Hebrew language but in the letters of the Samaritan alphabet, and the version of the Pentateuch in the Samaritan language. One of the most important differences between the Samaritan and the Hebrew text respects the duration of the period between the deluge and the birth of Abraham. The Samaritan text makes it longer by some centuries than the Hebrew text; and the Septuagint makes it longer by some centuries than the Samaritan.” It is observable that in the authentic translation of the Latin Vulgate, the Roman Church follows the computation expressed in the Hebrew text; and in her Martyrology follows that of the Seventy, both texts being inspired, as she claims.]
(Page 170) As to our statement that the present Old Testament does not contain the original Books of Moses, this is proven by the facts that:
The Samaritans repudiated the Jewish canonical books and their “Law
of Moses.” They will have neither the Psalms of David, nor the
Prophets, nor the Talmud and Mishna: nothing but the real Books
of Moses, and in quite a different edition. [ See Rev. Joseph Wolff’s
Journal. p. 200.] The Books of Moses and of Joshua are disfigured
out of recognition by the Talmudists, they say,
(2) The “black Jews” of Cochin, Southern India - who know nothing of the Babylonian Captivity or of the ten “lost tribes” (the latter a pure invention of the Rabbis), proving that these Jews must have come to India before the year 600 B.C. - have their Books of Moses which they will show to no one. And these Books of Laws differ greatly from the present scrolls. Nor are they written in the square Hebrew characters (semi-Chaldaic and semi-Palmyrean) but in the archaic letters, as we were assured by one of them - letters entirely unknown to all but themselves and a few Samaritans.
(3) The Karaim Jews of the Crimea - who call themselves the descendants of the true children of Israel, i.e. of the Sadducees - reject the Torah and the Pentateuch of the Synagogue, reject the Sabbath of the Jews (keeping Friday), will have neither the Books of the Prophets nor the Psalms - nothing but their own Books of Moses and what they call his one and real Law.
This makes it plain that the Kabalah of the Jews is but the distorted echo of the Secret Doctrine of the Chaldaeans, and that the real Kabalah is found only in the Chaldaean Book of Numbers now in the possession of some Persian Sufis. Every nation in antiquity had its traditions based on those of the Aryan Secret Doctrine; and each nation points to this day to a Sage of its own race who had received the primordial revelation from, and had recorded it under the orders of, a more or less divine Being. Thus it was with the Jews, as with all others. They had received their Occult Cosmogony and Laws from their Initiate, Moses, and they have now entirely mutilated them.
Adi is the generic name in our Doctrine of all the first men, i.e.., the first speaking races, in each of the seven zones - hence probably “Ad-am.”
The First Men (Page 171) And such first men, in every nation, are credited with having been taught the divine mysteries of creation. Thus, the Sabaeans (according to a tradition preserved in the Sufi works) say that when the “Third First Man” left the country adjacent to India for Babel, a tree [ A tree is symbolically a book - as “pillar” is another synonym of the same.] was given to him, then another and a third tree, whose leaves recorded the history of all the races; the “Third First Man” meant one who belonged to the Third Root-Race, and yet the Sabaeans call him Adam. The Arabs of Upper Egypt, and the Mohammedans generally have recorded a tradition that the Angel Azaz-el brings a message from the Wisdom-Word of God to Adam whenever he is reborn; this the Sufis explain by adding that this book is given to every Seli-Allah (“the chosen one of God”) for his wise men. The story narrated by the Kabalists - namely, that the book given to Adam before his Fall (a book full of mysteries and signs and events which either had been, were, or were to be) was taken away by the Angel Raziel after Adam's Fall, but again restored to him lest men might lose its wisdom and instruction; that this book was delivered by Adam to Seth, who passed it to Enoch, and the latter to Abraham, and so on in succession to the most wise of every generation - relates to all nations, and not to the Jews alone. For Berosus narrates in his turn that Xisuthrus compiled a book, writing it at the command of his deity, which book was buried in Zipara [ The wife of Moses, one of the seven daughters of a Midian priest, is called Zipora. It was Jethro, the priest of Midian, who initiated Moses, Zipora, one of the seven daughters, being simply one of the seven Occult powers that the Hierophant was and is supposed to pass to the initiated novice.] or Sippara, the City of the Sun, in Ba-bel-on-ya, and was dug up long afterwards and deposited in the temple of Belos; it is from this book that Berosus took his history of the antediluvian dynasties of Gods and Heroes. Aelian (in Nimrod) speaks of a Hawk (emblem of the Sun), who in the days of the beginnings brought to the Egyptians a book containing the wisdom of their religion. The Sam-Sam of the Sabaeans is also a Kabalah, as is the Arabic Zem-Zem (Well of Wisdom). [ See for these details the Book of God, pp. 244, 250 ]
We are told by a very learned Kabalist that Seyffarth assets that the old Egyptian tongue was only old Hebrew, or a Semitic dialect; and he proves this, our correspondent thinks, by sending him “some 500 words in common” in the two languages. This proves very little to our mind. It only shows that the two nations lived together for centuries, and that before adopting the Chaldaean for their phonetic (Page 172) tongue the Jews had adopted the old Coptic or Egyptian. The Israelitish Scriptures drew their hidden wisdom from the primeval Wisdom-Religion that was the source of other Scriptures, only it was sadly degraded by being applied to things and mysteries of this Earth, instead of to those in the higher and ever-present, though invisible, spheres. Their national history, if they can claim any autonomy before their return from the Babylonian captivity, cannot be carried back one day earlier than the time of Moses. The language of Abraham - if Zeruan (Saturn, the emblem of time - the “Sar,” “Saros,” a “cycle”) can be said to have any language - was not Hebrew, but Chaldaic, perhaps Arabic, and still more likely some old Indian dialect. This is shown by numerous proofs, some of which we give here; and unless, indeed, to please the tenacious and stubborn believers in Bible chronology, we cripple the years of our globe to the Procrustean bed of 7,000 years, it becomes self-evident that the Hebrew cannot be called an old language, merely because Adam is supposed to have used it in the Garden of Eden. Bunsen says in Egypt’s Place in Universal History that in the
Chaldean tribe immediately connected with Abraham, we find reminiscences of dates disfigured and misunderstood as genealogies of single men, or figures of epochs. The Abrahamic recollections go back at least three millennia beyond the grandfather of Jacob [ Op. cit. V. 85.]
The Bible of the Jews has ever been an Esoteric Book in its hidden meaning, but this meaning has not remained one and the same throughout since the days of Moses. It is useless, considering the limited space we can give to this subject, to attempt anything like the detailed history of the vicissitudes of the so-called Pentateuch, and besides, the history is too well known to need lengthy disquisitions. Whatever was, or was not, the Mosaic Book of Creation - from Genesis down to the Prophets - the Pentateuch of today is not the same. It is sufficient to read the criticisms of Erasmus, and even of Sir Isaac Newton, to see clearly that the Hebrew Scriptures had been tampered with and re -modelled, had been lost and rewritten, a dozen times before the days of Ezra. This Ezra himself may yet one day turn out to have been Azara; the Chaldaean priest of the Fire and Sun-God, a renegade who through his desire of becoming a ruler, and in order to create an Ethnarchy, restored that old lost Jewish Books in his own way.
Many Events Not Historical- (Page 173) It was an easy thing for one versed in the secret system of Esoteric numerals, or Symbology, to put together events from the stray books that had been preserved by various tribes, and make of them an apparently harmonious narrative of creation and of the evolution of the Judaean race. But in its hidden meaning, from Genesis to the last word of Deuteronomy, the Pentateuch is the symbolical narrative of the sexes, and is an apotheosos of Phallicism, under astronomical and physiological personations. [ As is fully shown in the Source of Measures and other works.] Its co-ordination, however, is only apparent; and the human hand appears at every moment, is found everywhere in the “Book of God.” Hence the Kings of Edom discuss in Genesis before any king had reigned in Israel; Moses records his own death, and Aaron dies twice and is buried in two different places, to say nothing of other trifles. For the Kabalist they are trifles, for he knows that all these events are not history, but are simply the cloak designed to envelope and hide various physiological peculiarities; but for the sincere Christian, who accepts all these “dark sayings” in good faith, it matters a good deal. Solomon may very well be regarded as a myth [ Surely even Masons would never claim the actual existence of Solomon? As Kenealy shows, he is not noticed by Herodotus, nor by Plato, nor by any writer of standing. It is most extraordinary, he says, “that the Jewish nation, over whom but a few years before the mighty Solomon had reigned in all his glory, with a magnificence scarcely equalled by the greatest monarchs, spending nearly eight thousand millions of gold on a temple, was overlooked by the historian Herodotus, writing of Egypt on the one hand, and of Babylon on the other - visiting both places, and of course passing almost necessarily within a few miles of the splendid capital of the national Jerusalem? How can this be accounted for? “ he asks (p.457). Nay, not only are there no proofs of the twelve tribes of Israel having ever existed, but Herodotus, the most accurate of historians, who was in Assyria when Ezra flourished, never mentions the Israelites at all: and Herodotus was born in 484 B.C. How is this?] by the Masons, as they lose nothing by it, for all their secrets are Kabalistic and allegorical - for those few, at any rate, who understand them. For the Christian, however, to give up Solomon, the son of David - from whom Jesus is made to descend - involves a real loss. But how even the Kabalists can claim great antiquity for the Hebrew texts of the old Biblical scrolls now possessed by the scholars is not made at all apparent. For it is certainly a fact of history, based on the confessions of the Jews themselves, and of Christians likewise, that:
The Scriptures having perished in the captivity of Nabuchodonozar, Esdras, the Levite, the priest, in the times of Artaxerxes, king of the Persians, having become inspired, in the exercise of prophecy restored again the whole of the ancient Scriptures. [ Clement, Stromateis. XXII.]
(Page 174) One must have a strong belief in “Esdras,” and especially in his good faith, to accept the now-existing copies as genuine Mosaic Books; for:
Assuming that the copies, or rather phonographs which had been made by Hilkiah and Esdras, and the various anonymous editors, were really true and genuine, they must have been wholly exterminated by Antiochus; and the versions of the Old Testament which now subsist must have been made by Judas, or by some unknown compilers, probably from the Greek of the Seventy, long after the appearance and death of Jesus. [ Book of God. p.408.]
The Bible, therefore, as it is now (the Hebrew texts, that is), depends for its accuracy on the genuineness of the Septuagint; this, we are again told, was written miraculously by the Seventy, in Greek, and the original copy having been lost since that time, our texts are retranslated back into Hebrew from that language. But in this vicious circle of proofs we once more have to rely upon the good faith of two Jews - Josephus and Philo Judaeus of Alexandria - these two Historians being the only witnesses that the Septuagint was written under the circumstances narrated. And yet it is just these circumstances that are very little calculated to inspire one with confidence. For what does Josephus tell us? He says that Ptolemy Philadelphus, desiring to read the Hebrew Law in Greek, wrote to Eleazar, the high-priest of the Jews, begging him to send him six men from each of the twelve tribes, who should make a translation for him. Then follows a truly miraculous story, vouchsafed by Aristeas, of these seventy-two men from the twelve tribes of Israel, who, shut up in an island, compiled their translation in exactly seventy-two days, etc.
All this is very edifying, and one might have had very little reason to doubt the story, had not the “ten lost tribes” been made to play their part in it. How could these tribes, lost between 700 and 900 B.C., each send six men some centuries later, to satisfy the whim of Ptolemy, and to disappear once more immediately afterwards from the horizon? A miracle, verily.
We are expected, nevertheless, to regard such documents as the Septuagint as containing direct divine revelation: Documents originally written in a tongue about which nobody now knows anything; written by authors that are practically mythical, and at dates as to which no one is able even to make a defensible surmise; documents of the original copies of which there does not now remain a shred.
The Real Hebrew Characters Lost - (Page 175) Yet people will persist in talking of the ancient Hebrew, as if there were any man left in the world who knows one word of it. So little, indeed was Hebrew known that both the Septuagint and the New Testament had to be written in a heathen language (the Greek), and no better reasons for it given than what Hutchinson says, namely, that the Holy Ghost chose to write the New Testament in Greek.
The Hebrew language is considered to be very old, and yet there exists no trace of it anywhere on the old monuments, not even in Chaldaea. Among the great number of inscriptions of various kinds found in the ruins of that country:
One in the Hebrew Chaldee letter and language has never been found; nor has a single authentic medal or gem in this newfangled character been ever discovered, which could carry it even to the days of Jesus. [ Book of God. p.453.]
The original Book of Daniel is written in a dialect which is a mixture of Hebrew and Aramaic; it is not even in Chaldaic, with the exception of a few verses interpolated later on. According to Sir. W. Jones and other Orientalists, the oldest discoverable languages of Persia are the Chaldaic and Sanskrit, and there is no trace of the “Hebrew” in these. It would be very surprising if there were, since the Hebrew known to the Philologists does not date earlier than 500 B.C., and its characters belong to a far later period still. Thus, while the real Hebrew characters, if not altogether lost are nevertheless so hopelessly transformed -
A mere inspection of the alphabet showing that it has been shaped and made regular, in doing which the characteristic marks of some of the letters have been retrenched in order to make them more square and uniform - [ Asiatic Journal, VII., p.275, quoted by Kenealy.]
That no one but an initiated Rabbi of Samaria or a “Jain” could read them, the new system of the masoretic points has made them a sphinx-riddle for all. Punctuation is now to be found everywhere in all the later manuscripts, and by means of it anything can be made of a text; a Hebrew scholar can put on the texts any interpretation he likes. Two instances given by Kenealy will suffice:
Genesis,x1ix. 21, we read:
Naphtali is a hind let loose; he giveth goodly words.
By only a slight alternation of the points Bochart changes this into:
Napthali is a spreading tree, shooting forth beautiful branches.
again, in Psalms (xxix.9), instead of:(Page
The voice of the Lord maketh the hind to calve, and discovereth the forests;
Bishop Lowth gives:
voice of the Lord striketh the oak, and discovereth the forests.
The same word in Hebrew signifies “God” and “nothing,” etc. [ Book of God. p.385.]
With regard to the claim made by some Kabalists that there was in antiquity one knowledge and one language, this claim is also our own, and it is very just. Only it must be added, to make the thing clear, that this knowledge and language have both been esoteric every since the submersion of the Atlanteans. The Tower of Babel myth relates to that enforced secrecy. Men falling into sin were regarded as no longer trustworthy for the reception of such knowledge, and, from being universal, it became limited to the few. Thus, the “one-lip” - or the Mystery-language - being gradually denied to subsequent generations, all the nations became severally restricted to their own national tongue; and forgetting the primeval Wisdom-language, they stated that the Lord - one of the chief Lords or Hierophants of the Mysteries of the Java Aleim - had confounded the languages of all the earth, so that the sinners could understand one another’s speech no longer. But Initiates remained in every land and nation, and the Israelites, like all others, had their learned Adepts. One of the keys to this Universal Knowledge is a pure geometrical and numerical system, the alphabet of every great nation having a numerical value for every letter, [ Speaking of the hidden meaning of the Sanskrit words, Mr. T. Subba Row, in his able article on “The Twelve Signs of the Zodiac.” gives some advice as to the way in which one should proceed to find out “the deep significance of ancient Sanskrit nomenclature in the old Aryan myths. 1. Find out the synonyms of the word used which have other meanings. 2. Find out the numerical value of the letters composing of the word according to the methods of the ancient Tântrik works [Tântrika Shastra - works on Incantation and Magic ]. 3. Examine the ancient myths or allegories if there are any, which have any special connection with the word in question. 4. Permute the different syllables composing the word and examine the new combinations that will thus be formed and their meanings.” etc. But he does not give the principal rule. And no doubt he is quite right. The Tântrika Shâstras are as old as Magic itself. Have they also borrowed their Esotericism from the Hebrews?] and, moreover, a system of permutation of syllables and synonyms which is carried to perfection in the Indian Occult methods, and which the Hebrew certainly has not. This one system, containing the elements of Geometry and Numeration, was used by the Jews for the purpose of concealing their Esoteric creed under the mask of a popular and national monotheistic Religion. The last who knew the system to perfection were the learned and “atheistical” Sadducees, the greatest enemies of the pretensions of the Pharisees and of their confused notions brought from Babylon.
Hebrew Esotericism Not Primitive- (Page 177) Yes, the Sadducees, the Illusionists, who maintained that the Soul, the Angels, and all similar Beings, were illusions because they were temporary - thus showing themselves at one with Eastern Esotericism. And since they rejected every book and Scripture, with the exception of the Law of Moses, it seems that the latter must have been very different from what it is now. [ Their founder, Sadoc, was the pupil, through Antigonus Saccho, of Simon the Just. They had their own secret Book of the Law ever since the foundation of their sect (about 400 B.C.) and this volume was unknown to the masses. At the same time of the Separation the Samaritans recognized only the Book of the Law of Moses and the Book of Joshua, and their Pentateuch is far older, and is different from the Septuagint. In 168 B.C. Jerusalem had its temple plundered, and its Sacred Books - namely, the Bible made up by Ezra and finished by Judas Maccabeus - were lost (see Burder’s Josephus, vol. ii. pp. 331-335): after which the Massorah completed the work of destruction (even of Ezra’s once-more adjusted Bible) begun by the change into square from horned letters. Therefore the later Pentateuch accepted by the Pharisees was rejected and laughed at by the Sadducees. They are generally called atheists; yet, since those learned men, who made no secret of their freethought, furnished from among their number the most eminent of the Jewish high-priests, this seems impossible. How could the Pharisees and the other two believing and pious sects allow notorious atheists to be selected for such posts? The answer is difficult to find for bigotry and for believers in a personal, anthropomorphic God but very easy for those who accept facts. The Sadducees were called atheists because they believed as the initiated Moses believed, thus differing very widely from the latter made-up Jewish legislator and hero of Mount Sinai.]
The whole of the foregoing is written with an eye to our Kabalists. Great scholars as some of them undoubtedly are, they are nevertheless wrong to hang the harps of their faith on the willows of Talmudic growth - on the Hebrew scrolls, whether in square or pointed characters, now in our public libraries, museums, or even in the collections of Paleographers. There do not remain half-a-dozen copies from the true Mosaic Hebrew scrolls in the whole world. And those who are in possession of these - as we indicated a few pages back - would not part with them, or even allow them to be examined, on any consideration whatever. How then can any Kabalist claim priority for Hebrew Esotericism, and say, as does one of our correspondents, that “the Hebrew has come down from a far remoter antiquity than any of them [whether Egyptian or even Sanskrit!], and that it was the source, or nearer to the old original source, than any of them”? [ The measurements of the Great Pyramid being those of the temple of Solomon, of the Ark of the Covenant, etc., according to Piazzi Smythe and the author of the Source of Measures, and the Pyramid of Gizeh being shown on astronomical calculations to have been built 4950 B.C., and Moses having written his books - for the sake of argument - not even half that time before our era, how can this be? Surely if any one borrowed from the other, it is not the Pharaohs from Moses. Even philology shows not only the Egyptian, but even the Mongolian, older than the Hebrew.]
As our correspondent says: “It becomes more convincing to me every day that in a far past time there was a mighty civilization with (Page 178) enormous learning, which had a common language over the earth, as to which its essence can be recovered from the fragments which now exist.”
Aye, there existed indeed a mighty civilization, and a still mightier secret learning and knowledge, the entire scope of which can never be discovered by Geometry and the Kabalah alone: for there are seven keys to the large entrance-door, and not one, nor even two, keys can ever open it sufficiently to allow more than glimpses of what lies within.
Every scholar must be aware that there are two distinct styles - two schools, so to speak - plainly traceable in the Hebrew Scriptures: the Elohistic and the Jehovistic. The portions belonging to these respectively are so blended together, so completely mixed up by later hands, that often all external characteristics are lost. Yet it is also known that the two schools were antagonistic; that the one taught esoteric, the other exoteric, or theological doctrines; that the one, the Elohists, were Seers (Roch), whereas the other, the Jehovists, were prophets (Nabhi) [ This alone shows how the Books of Moses were tampered with. In Samuel (ix.9), it is said: “He that is now a prophet [Nabhi] was beforetime called a Seer [Roch].” Now since before Samuel, the word “Roch” is met nowhere in the Pentateuch, but its place is always taken by that of “Nabhi,” this proves clearly that the Mosaic text has been replaced by that of the later Levites. (See for fuller details Jewish Antiquities, by the Rev. D. Jennings. D.D.) ] and that the latter - who later became Rabbis - were generally only nominally prophets by virtue of their official position, as the Pope is called the infallible and inspired vicegerent of God. That, again, the Elohists meant by “Elohim” “forces,” identifying their Deity, as in the Secret Doctrine, with Nature; while the Jehovists made of Jehovah a personal God externally, and used the term simply as a phallic symbol - a number of them secretly disbelieving even in metaphysical, abstract Nature, and synthesizing all on the terrestrial scale. Finally, the Elohists made of man the divine incarnate image of the Elohim, emanated first in all Creation; and the Jehovists show him as the last, the crowning glory of the animal creation, instead of his being the head of all the sensible beings on earth. ( This is reversed by some Kabalists, but the reversion is due to the designedly-produced confusion in the texts, especially in the first four chapters of Genesis.)
Take the Zohar and find in it the description relating to Ain-Suph, the Western or Semitic Parabrahman. What passages have come so nearly up to the Vedantic ideal as the following:
The creation [the evolved Universe] is the garment of that which has no name, the garment woven from the Deity’s own substance. [ Zohar. i.2a.]
The Concealed of all the Concealed- (Page 179) Between that which is Ain or “nothing,” and the Heavenly Man, there is an Impersonal First Cause, however, of which it is said:
Before It gave any shape to this world, before It produced any form, It was alone, without form or similitude to anything else. Who, can comprehend It, how It was before the creation, since It was formless? Hence it is forbidden to represent It by any form, similitude, or even by Its sacred name, by a single letter or a single point. [ Zohar, 42b.]
The sentence that follows, however, is an evident later interpolation; for it draws attention to a complete contradiction:
And to this the words (Deut. iv. 15), refer - “Ye saw no manner of similitude on the day the Lord spake unto you.”
But this reference to Chapter iv. of Deuteronomy, when in Chapter v, God is mentioned as speaking “face to face” with the people, is very clumsy.
Not one of the names given to Jehovah in the Bible has any reference whatever to either Ain-Suph or the Impersonal First-Cause (which is the Logos) of the Kabalah; but they all refer to the Emanations.
For although to reveal itself to us, the concealed of all the concealed sent forth the Ten Emanations [Sephiroth] called the Form of God, Form of the Heavenly Man, yet since even this luminous form was too dazzling for our vision, it had to assume another form, or had to put on another garment, which is the Universe. The Universe, therefore, or the visible world, is a farther expansion of the Divine Substance, and is called in the Kabalah “The Garment of God.” [Zohar, i.2a. See Dr. Ch. Ginsburg’s essay on The Cabbalah, its Doctrines, Developments and Literature.]
This is the doctrine of all the Hindu Puranas, especially that of the Vishnu Purâna. Vishnu pervades the Universe and is that Universe; Brahmâ enters the Mundane Egg, and issues from it as the Universe; Brahmâ even dies with it and there remains only Brahman , the impersonal, the eternal, the unborn, and the unqualifiable. The Ain-Suph of the Chaldeans and later of the Jews is assuredly a copy of the Vaidic Deity; while the “Heavenly Adam,” the Macrocosm which unites in itself the totality of beings and is the Esse of the visible Universe, finds his original in the Puranic Brahmâ. In Sod,“the Secret of the Law,” one recognizes the expressions used in the oldest fragments of the Gupta Vidyâ, the Secret Knowledge. And it is not venturing too much to say that even a Rabbi quite familiar with his own special Rabbinical Hebrew would only comprehend its secrets thoroughly if he added to (Page 180) his learning a serious knowledge of the Hindu philosophies. Let us turn to Stanza I. of the Book of Dzyan for an example.
The Zohar premises, as does the Secret Doctrine, a universal, eternal Essence, passive - because absolute - in all that men call attributes. The pregenetic or pre-cosmical Triad is a pure metaphysical abstraction. The notion of a triple hypostasis in one Unknown Divine Essence is as old as speech and thought. Hiranyagarbha, Hari, and Shankara - the Creator, the Preserver, and the Destroyer - are the three manifested attributes of it, appearing and disappearing with Kosmos; the visible Triangle, so to speak, on the plane of the ever-invisible Circle. This is the primeval root-thought of thinking Humanity; the Pythagorean Triangle emanation from the ever-concealed Monad, or the Central Point.
Plato speaks of it and Plotinus calls it an ancient doctrine, on which Cudworth remarks that:
Since Orpheus, Pythagoras, and Plato, who all of them asserted a Trinity of divine hypostases, unquestionably derived their doctrine from the Egyptians, it may be reasonably suspected that the Egyptians did the like before them. [ Cudworth, I. iii. quoted by Wilson. Vishnu Purana, i. 14, note.]
The Egyptians certainly derived their Trinity from the Indians. Wilson justly observes:
As, however, the Grecian accounts and those of the Egyptians are much more perplexed and unsatisfactory than those of the Hindus, it is most probable that we find amongst them the doctrine in its most original, as well as most methodical and significant form. [ Vishnu Purana. I, 14 ]
This, then, is the meaning:
“Darkness alone filled the Boundless All, for Father, Mother and Son were once more One.” [ Stanza i. 4. ]
Space was, and is ever, as it is between the Manvantara. The Universe in its pre-kosmic state was once more homogeneous and one - outside its aspects. This was a Kabalistic, and is now a Christian teaching.
is constantly shown in the Zohar, the Infinite Unity, or Ain-Suph, is
ever placed outside human thought and appreciation; and in Sepher Jetzirah
we see the Spirit of God - the Logos, not the Deity itself -
One is the Spirit of the Living God . . Who liveth forever. Voice, Spirit, [of the spirit], and Word: this is the Holy Spirit, [ Mishna, i. 9.]
Three-in-one and Four - (Page 181) - and the Quaternary. From this Cube emanates the whole Kosmos.
Says the Secret Doctrine:
“It is called to life. The mystic Cube in which rests the Creative Idea, the manifesting Mantra [or articulate speech - Vâch] and the holy Pûrusha [both radiations of prima material] exist in the Eternity in the Divine Substance in their latent state.
- during Pralaya.
And in the Sepher Jetzirah, when the Three-in-One are to be called into being - by the manifestation of Shekinah, the first effulgency or radiation in the manifesting Kosmos - the “Spirit of God,” or Number One, [ In its manifested state it becomes Ten, the Universe. In the Chaldaean Kabalah it is sexless. In the Jewish, Shekinah is female, and the early Christians and Gnostics regarded the Holy Ghost, as a female potency. In the Book of Numbers “Shekina” is made to drop the final “h” that makes it a female potency. Nârâyana, the Mover on the Waters, is also sexless: but it is our firm belief that Shekinah and Daiviprakriti, the “Light of the Logos,” are one and the same thing philosophically.] fructifies and awakens the dual Potency, Number Two, Air, and Number Three, Water; in these “are darkness and emptiness, slime and dung” - which is Chaos, the Tohu-Vah-Bohu. The Air and Water emanate Number Four, Ether or Fire, the Son. This is the Kabalistic Quaternary. This Fourth Number, which in the manifested Kosmos is the One, or the Creative God, is with the Hindus the “Ancient,” Sanat, the Prajâpati of the Vedas and the Brahmâ of the Brâhmans - the heavenly Androgyne, as he becomes the male only after separating himself into two bodies, Vâch and Virâj. With the Kabalists, he is at first the Jah-Havah, only later becoming Jehovah, like Virâj, his prototype; after separating himself as Adam-Kadmon into Adam and Eve in the formless, and into Cain-Abel in the semi-objective world, he became finally the Jah-Havah, or man and woman, in Enoch, the son of Seth.
For, the true meaning of the compound name of Jehovah - of which, unvoweled, you can make almost anything - is: men and women, or humanity composed of its two sexes. From the first chapter to the end of the fourth chapter of Genesis every name is a permutation of another name, and every personage is at the same time somebody else. A Kabalist traces Jehovah from the Adam of earth to Seth, the third son - or rather race - of Adam. [ The Elohim create the Adam of dust, and in him Jehovah-Binah separates himself into Eve, after which the male portion of God becomes the Serpent, tempts himself in Eve, then creates himself in her as Cain, passes into Seth, and scatters from Enoch, the Son of Man, or Humanity, as Jodheva.] Thus Seth is Jehovah male; and Enos, (Page 182)being a permutation of Cain and Abel, is Jehovah male and female, or our mankind. The Hindu Brahmâ-Virâj, Virâj-Manu, and Manu-Vaivasvata, with his daughter and wife, Vâch, present the greatest analogy with these personages - for anyone who will take the trouble of studying the subject in both the Bible and the Purânas. It is said of Brahma that he created himself as Manu, and that he was born of, and was identical with, his original self, while he constituted the female portion Shâta-rupa” (hundred-formed) In this Hindu Eve, “the mother of all living beings,” Brahmâ created Virâj, who is himself, but on a lower scale, as Cain is Jehovah on an inferior scale: both are the first males of the Third Race. The same idea is illustrated in the Hebrew name of God (חח) Read from right to left “Jod” (") is the father. “He” (ח) the mother, “Vau” (ך) the son, and “He” (ח), repeated at the end of the word, is generation, the act of birth, materiality. This is surely a sufficient reason why the God of the Jews and Christians should be personal, as much as the male Brahma, Vishnu, or Shiva of the orthodox, exoteric Hindu.
Thus the term of Jhvh alone - now accepted as the name of “One living [male] God” - will yield, if seriously studied, not only the whole mystery of Being (in the Biblical sense,) but also that of the Occult Theogony, from the highest divine Being, the third in order, down to man. As shown by the best Hebraists:
The verbal or Hâyâh, or E-y-e, means to be, to exist, while or Chayah or H-y-e, means to live, as motion of existence.[ The Source of Measures. p.5 ]
Hence Eve stands as the evolution and the never-ceasing “becoming” of Nature. Now if we take the almost untranslatable Sanskrit word Sat, which means the quintessence of absolute immutable Being, or Be-ness - as it has been rendered by an able Hindu Occultist - we shall find no equivalent for it in any language; but it may be regarded as most closely resembling “Ain,” or “En-Suph,” Boundless Being. Then the term Hâyâh, “to be,” as passive, changeless, yet manifested existence may perhaps be rendered by the Sanskrit Jivatma, universal life or soul, in its secondary or cosmic meaning; while “Châyâh,” “to live,” as “motion of existence,” is simply Prâna, the ever-changing life in its objective sense. It is at the head of this third category that the Occultist finds Jehovah - the Mother, Binah, and the Father, Arelim.
The Septenary Sephira- (Page 183) This is made plain in the Zohar, when the emanation and evolution of the Sephiroth are explained: First, Ain-Suph, then Shekinah, the Garment or Veil of Infinite Light, then Sephira or the Kadmon, and, thus making the fourth, the spiritual Substance sent forth from the Infinite Light. This Sephira is called the Crown, Kether, and has besides, six other names - in all seven. These names are: 1. Kether; 2. the Aged; 3. the Primordial Point; 4. the White Head; 5. the Long Face; 6. the Inscrutable Height; and 7. Ehejeh (“I am”.) [ This identifies Sephira, the third potency, with Jehovah the Lord, who says to Moses out of the burning bush: “(Here) I am.” (Exodus, iii.4). At this time the “Lord” has not yet become Jehovah. It was not the one male God who spoke, but the Elohim manifested, or the Sephiroth in their manifested collectivity of seven, contained in the triple Sephira.] This Septenary Sephira is said to contain in itself the nine Sephiroth. But before showing how she brought them forth, let us read an explanation about the Sephiroth in the Talmud, which gives it as an archaic tradition, or Kabalah.
There are three groups (or orders) of Sephiroth: 1. The Sephiroth called “divine attributes” (the Triad in the Holy Quaternary); 2. the sidereal (personal) Sephiroth; 3. the metaphysical Sephiroth, or a periphrasis of Jehovah, who are the first three Sephiroth (Kether, Chokmah and Binah), the rest of the seven being the personal “Seven Spirits of the Presence” (also of the planets, therefore). Speaking of these, the angels are meant, though not because they are seven, but because they represent the seven Sephiroth which contain in them the universality of the Angels.
This shows (a) that, when the first four Sephiroth are separated, as a Triad-Quaternary - Sephira being its synthesis - there remain only seven Sephiroth, as there are seven Rishis; these become ten when the Quaternary, or the first divine Cube, is scattered into units; and (b) that while Jehovah might have been viewed as the Deity, if he be included in the three divine groups or orders of the Sephiroth, the collective Elohim, or the quaternary indivisible Kether, once that he becomes a male God, he is not more than one of the Builders of the lower group - a Jewish Brahmâ. [ The Brahmans were wise in their generation when they gradually, for no other reason than this, abandoned Brahmâ, and paid less attention to him individually than to any other deity. As an abstract synthesis they worshipped him collectively and in every God, each of which represents him. As Brâhma, the male, he is far lower than Shiva, the Lingam, who personates universal generation, or Vishnu, the preserver - both Shiva and Vishnu being the regenerators of life after destruction. The Christians might do worse than follow their example, and worship God in Spirit, and not in the male Creator.] A demonstration is now attempted.
The first Sephira, containing the other nine, brought them forth in (Page 184) this order: (2) Hokmah (Chokmah, or Wisdom), a masculine active potency represented among the divine names as Jah; and, as a permutation or an evolution into lower forms in this instance - becoming the Auphanim (or the Wheels - cosmic rotation of matter) among the army, or the angelic hosts. From this Chokmah emanated a feminine passive potency called (3) Intelligence, Binah, whose divine name is Jehovah, and whose angelic name, among the Builders and Hosts, is Arelim. [ A plural word, signifying a collective host generically: literally, the “strong lion.”] It is from the union of these two potencies, male and female (or Chokmah and Binah) that emanated all the other Sephiroth, the seven orders of the Builders. Now if we call Jehovah by his divine name, then he becomes at best and forthwith “a female passive” potency in Chaos. And if we view him as a male God, he is no more than one of many, an Angel, Arelim. But straining the analysis to its highest point, and if his male name Jah, that of Wisdom, be allowed to him, still he is not the “Highest and the one Living God;” for he is contained with many others within Sephira, and Sephira herself is a third Potency in Occultism, though regarded as the first in the exoteric Kabalah - and is one, moreover, of lesser importance than the Vaidic Aditi, or the Primordial Water of Space, which becomes after many a permutation of the Astral Light of the Kabalist.
Thus the Kabalah, as we have it now, is shown to be of the greatest importance in explaining the allegories and “dark sayings” of the Bible. As an Esoteric work upon the mysteries of creation, however, it is almost worthless as it is now disfigured, unless checked by the Chaldaean Book of Numbers or by the tenets of the Easter Secret Science, or Esoteric Wisdom. The Western nations have neither the original Kabalah, nor yet the Mosaic Bible.
Finally, it is demonstrated by internal as well as by external evidence, on the testimony of the best European Hebraists, and the confessions of the learned Jewish Rabbis themselves, that “an ancient document forms the essential basis of the Bible, which received very considerable insertions and supplements;” and that “the Pentateuch arose out of the primitive or older document by means of a supplementary one.” Therefore in the absence of the Book of Numbers,, [ The writer possesses only a few extracts, some dozen pages in all, verbatim quotations from that priceless work, of which but two or three copies, perhaps, are still extant.] the Kabalists of the West are only entitled to come to definite conclusions, when they have at hand some data at least from that “ancient document” - (Page 185) data now found scattered throughout Egyptian papyri, Assyrian tiles, and the traditions preserved by the descendants of the disciples of the last Nazars. Instead of that, most of them accept as their authorities and infallible guides Fabre d’Olivet - who was a man of immense erudition and of speculative mind, but neither a Kabalist nor an Occultist, either Western or Eastern - and the Mason Ragon, the greatest of the “Widow’s sons,” who was even less of an Orientalist than d’Olivet, for Sanskrit learning was almost unknown in the days of both these eminent scholars.
(Page 186) How can any Kabalist, acquainted with the foregoing, deduce his conclusions with regard to the true Esoteric beliefs of the primitive Jews, from only that which he now finds in the Jewish scrolls? How can any scholar - even though one of the keys to the universal language be now positively discovered, the true key to the numerical reading of a pure geometrical system - give out anything as his final conclusion? Modern Kabalistic speculation is on a par now with modern “speculative Masonry;” for as the latter tries vainly to link itself with the ancient - or rather the archaic - Masonry;” of the Temples, failing to make the link because all its claims have been shown to be inaccurate from an archaeological standpoint, so fares it also with Kabalistic speculation. As no mystery of Nature worth running after can be revealed to humanity by settling whether Hiram Abif was a living Sidonian Builder, or a solar myth, so no fresh information will be added to Occult Lore by the details of the exoteric privileges conferred on the Collegia Fabrorum by Numa Pompilius. Rather must the symbols used in it be studies in the Aryan light, since all the Symbolism of the ancient Initiations came to the West with the light of the Eastern Sun. Nevertheless, we find the most learned Masons and Symboligists declaring that all these weird symbols and glyphs, that run back to a common origin of immense antiquity, were nothing more than a display of cunning natural phallicism, or emblems of primitive typology. How much nearer the truth is the author of The Source of Measures, who declares that the elements of human and numerical construction in the Bible do not shut out the spiritual elements in it, albeit so few now understand them. The words we quote are as suggestive as they are true:
How desperately blinding becomes a superstitious use, through ignorance, of such emblems when they are made to possess the power of bloodshed and torture, through orders of propaganda of any species of religious cultus.
The Hebrew Bible does not Exist
(Page 187) When one thinks of the horrors of a Moloch, or Baal, or Dagon worship; of the correlated blood deluges under the Cross baptized in gore by Constantine, at the initiative of he secular Church; . . . when one thinks of all this and then that the cause of all has been simply ignorance of the real radical reading of the Moloch, and Baal, and Dagon, and the Cross and the Tphillin, all running back to a common origin, and after all being nothing more than a display of pure and natural mathematics, . . . one is apt to feel like cursing ignorance, and to lose confidence in what are called intuitions of religion; one is apt to wish for a return of the day when all the world was of one lip and of one knowledge . . .. But while these elements [of the construction of the pyramid] are rational and scientific, . . . . let no man consider that with this discovery comes a cutting off of the spirituality [ Aye: but that spirituality can never be discovered, far less proved, unless we turn to the Aryan Scriptures and Symbology. For the Jews it was lost, save for the Sadducees, from the day that the “chosen people” reached the Promised Land, the national Karma preventing Moses from reaching it.] of the Bible intention, or of man’s relation to this spiritual foundation. Does one wish to build a house? No house was ever actually built with tangible material until first the architectural design of building had been accomplished, no matter whether the structure was palace or hovel. So with these elements and numbers. They are not of man, nor are they of his invention. They have been revealed to him to the extent of his ability to realize a system, which is the creative system of the eternal God. . . . But spiritually, to man the value of this matter is that he can actually in contemplation, bridge over all material construction of the cosmos, and pass into the very thought and mind of God, to the extent of recognizing this system of design for cosmic creation - yea, even before the words went forth: “ Let there be.” [ Op.cit., pp. 317-319 ]
But true as above words may be, when coming from one who has rediscovered, more completely than anyone else has done during the past centuries, one of the keys to the universal Mystery Language, it is impossible for an Eastern Occultist to agree with the conclusion of the able author of The Source of Measures. He “has set out to find the truth,” and yet he still believes that:
The best and most authentic vehicle of communication from [the creative] God to man . . . is to be found in the Hebrew Bible.
To this we must and shall demur, giving our reasons for it in a few words. The “Hebrew Bible” exists no more, as has been shown in the foregoing pages, and the garbled accounts, the falsified and pale copies we have of the real Mosaic Bible of the Initiates, warrant the making of no such sweeping assertion and claim. All that the scholar can fairly claim is that the Jewish Bible, as now extant - in its latest and final interpretation, and according to the newly-discovered key - may give (Page 188) a partial presentment of the truths it contained before it was mangled. But how can he tell what the Pentateuch contained before it has been recomposed by Esdras; then corrupted still more by the ambitious Rabbis in later times, and otherwise remodelled and interfered with? Leaving aside the opinion of the declared enemies of the Jewish Scripture, one may quote simply what their most devoted followers say.
Two of these are Horne and Prideaux. The avowels of the former will be sufficient to show how much now remains of the original Mosaic books, unless indeed we accept his sublimely blind faith in the inspiration and editorship of the Holy Ghost. He writes that when a Hebrew scribe found a writing of any author he was entitled, if he thought fit, being “conscious of the aid of the Holy Spirit,” to do exactly as he pleased with it - to cut it up, or copy it, or use as much of it as he deemed right, and so to incorporate it with his own manuscript. Dr. Kenealy aptly remarks of Horne, that it is almost impossible to get any admission from him.
That makes against his church, so remarkably guarded is he [Horne] in his phraseology and so wonderfully discreet in the use of words that his language, like a diplomatic letter, perpetually suggests to the mind ideas other than those which he really means; I defy any unlearned person to read his chapter on “Hebrew characters” and to derive any knowledge from it whatever on the subject on which he professes to treat. [ The Book of God. pp. 388, 389 ]
And yet this same Horne writes:
We are persuaded that the things to which reference is made proceeded from the original writers or compilers of the books [Old Testament]. Sometimes they took other writings, annals, genealogies, and such like, with which they incorporated additional matter, or which they put together with greater or less condensation. The Old Testament authors used the sources they employed (that is, the writing of other people) with freedom and independence. Conscious of the aid of the Divine Spirit, they adapted their own productions, or the productions of others, to the wants of the times. But in these respects they cannot be said to have corrupted the text of Scriptures. They made the text.
But of what did they make it? Why, of the writings of other persons, justly observes Kenealy:
And this is Horne’s notion of what the Old Testament is - a cento from the writings of unknown persons collected and put together by those who, he says, were divinely inspired. No infidel that I know of has ever made so damaging a charge as this against the authenticity of the Old Testament. [ See Horne’s Introduction (10th edition), vol. ii. p.33. as quoted by Dr. Kenealy. p.389. ]
Some Hebrews Were Initiates- ( Page 189) This is quite sufficient, we think, to show that no key to the universal language-system can ever open the mysteries of Creation in a work in which, whether through design or carelessness, nearly every sentence has been made to apply to the latest outcome of religious views - to Phallicism, and to nothing else. There are a sufficient number of stray bits in the Elohistic portions of the Bible to warrant the inference that the Hebrews who wrote it were Initiates; hence the mathematical coordinations and the perfect harmony between the measures of the Great Pyramid and the numerals of the Biblical glyphs. But surely if one borrowed from the other, it cannot be the architects of the Pyramid who borrowed from Solomon’s Temple, if only because the former exists to this day as a stupendous living monument of Esoteric records, while the famous temple has never existed outside of the far later Hebrew scrolls. [ The author says that Parker’s quadrature is “that identical measure which was used anciently as the perfect measure, by the Egyptians, in the construction of the Great Pyramid, which was built to monument it and its uses.” and that “from it the sacred cubit-value was derived, which was the cubit-value used in the construction of the Temple of Solomon, the Ark of Noah, and the Ark of the Covenant” (p.22). This is a grand discovery, no doubt, but it only shows that the Jews profited well by their captivity in Egypt, and that Moses was a great Initiate.] Hence there is a great distance between the admission that some Hebrew Bible must be the best standard, as being the highest representative of the archaic Esoteric System.
Nowhere does the Bible say, moreover, that the Hebrew is the language of God; of this boast, at any rate, the authors are not guilty. Perhaps because in the days when the Bible was last edited the claim would have been too preposterous - hence dangerous. The compilers of the Old Testament, as it exists in the Hebrew canon, knew well that the language of the Initiates in the days of Moses was identical with that of the Egyptian Hierophants; and that none of the dialects that had sprung from the old Syriac and the pure old Arabic of Yarab - the father and progenitor of the primitive Arabians, long before the time of Abraham, in whose days the ancient Arabic had already become vitiated - that none of those languages was the one sacerdotal universal tongue. Nevertheless all of them included a number of words which could be traced to common roots. And to do this is the business of modern Philology, though to this day, with all the respect due to the labours of the eminent Philologists of Oxford and Berlin, that Science seems to be hopelessly floundering in the Cimmerian darkness of mere hypothesis.
(Page 190) Ahrens, when speaking of the letters as arranged in the Hebrew sacred scrolls, and remaking that they were musical notes, had probably never studied Aryan Hindu music. In the Sanskrit language letters are continually arranged in the sacred Ollas so that they may become musical notes. For the whole Sanskrit alphabet and the Vedas, from the first word to the last, are musical notations reduced to writing; the two are inseparable.[ See Theosophist. 1879. art. “Hindu Music,” p.47.] As Homer distinguished between the “language of Gods” and the “language of men.” [ The Sanskrit letters are far more numerous than the poor twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. They are all musical, and they are read - or rather chanted - according to a system given in very old Tântrika works, and are called Devanâgari, the speech, or language, of the Gods. And since each letter answers to a numeral, the Sanskrit affords a far larger scope for expression, and it must necessarily be far more perfect than the Hebrew, which followed the same system but could apply it only in a very limited way. If either of these two languages were taught to humanity by the Gods, surely it would more likely be the Sanskrit, the perfect form of the most perfect language on earth, than the Hebrew, the roughest and the poorest. For once anyone believes in a language of divine origin, he can hardly believe at the same time that Angels or Gods or any divine Messengers have had to develop it from a rough monosyllable form into a perfect one, as we see in terrestrial linguistic evolution.] so did the Hindus. The Devanagari, the Sanskrit characters, are the “speech of the Gods,” and Sanskrit is the divine language.
It is argued in defence of the present version of the Mosaic Books that the mode of language adopted was an “accommodation” to the ignorance of the Jewish people. But the said “mode of language” drags down the “sacred text” of Esdras and his colleagues to the level of the most unspiritual and gross phallic religions. This plea confirms the suspicions entertained by some Christian Mystics and many philosophical critics, that;
(a) Divine Power as an Absolute Unity had never anything more to do with the Biblical Jehovah and the “Lord God” than with any other Sephiroth or number. The Ain-Suph of the Kabalah of Moses is as independent of any relation with the created Gods as is Parabrahman Itself.
(b) The teachings veiled in the Old Testament under allegorical expressions are all copied from the Magical Texts of Babylonia, by Esdras and others, while the earlier Mosaic Text had its source in Egypt.
A few instances known to almost all Symbologists of note, and especially to the French Egyptologists, may help to prove the statement. Furthermore, no ancient Hebrew Philosopher, Philo no more than the Sadducees, claimed, as do now the ignorant Christians, that the events in the Bible should be taken literally. Philo says most explicitly:
The verbal statements are fabulous [in the Book of Law]: it is in the allegory that we shall find the truth.
The Seven Creative Gods- (Page 191) Let us give a few instances, beginning with the latest narrative, the Hebrew, and thus if possible trace the allegories to their origin.
1. Whence the Creation in six days, the seventh day as day of rest, the seven Elohim, [ In the first chapter of Genesis the word “God” represents the Elohim - Gods in the plural, not one God. This is a cunning and dishonest translation. For the whole Kabalah explains sufficiently that the Alhim (Elohim) are seven: each, creates one of the seven things enumerated in the first chapter, and these answer allegorically to the seven creations. To make this clear, count the verses in which it is said “And God saw that it was good,” and you will find that this is said seven times - in verses 4, 10, 12, 18, 21, 25, and 31. And though the compilers cunningly represent the creation of man as occurring on the sixth day, yet, having made man “male and female in the image of God,” the Seven Elohim repeat the sacramental sentence. “It was good, “ for the seventh time, thus making of man the seventh creation, and showing the origin of this bit of cosmogony to be in the Hindu creations. The Elohim are, of course, the seven Egyptian Khnûmû, the “assistant-architects”: the seven Amshaspends of the Zoroastrians: the Seven Spirits subordinate to Ildabaoth of the Nazareans; the seven Prajâpati of the Hindus, etc.] and the division of space into heaven and earth, in the first chapter of Genesis?
The division of the vault above from the Abyss, or Chaos, below is one of the first acts of creation or rather of evolution, in every cosmogony. Hermes in Pymander speaks of a heaven seen in seven circles with seven Gods in them. We examine the Assyrian tiles and find the same on them - the seven creative Gods busy each in his own sphere. The cuneiform legends narrate how Bel prepared the seven mansions of the Gods; how heaven was separated from the earth. In the Brahmanical allegory everything is septenary, from the seven zones, or envelopes, of the Mundane Egg down to the seven continents, islands, seas, etc. The six days of the week and the seventh, the Sabbath, are based primarily on the seven creations of the Hindu Brahma, the seventh being that of man; and secondarily on the number of generation. It is pre-eminently and most conspicuously phallic. In the Babylonian system the seventh day, or period, was that in which man and the animals were created.
2. The Elohim make a woman out of Adam’s rib. [ Gen., ii.21, 22.] This process is found in the Magical Texts translated by G. Smith.
The seven Spirits bring forth the woman from the loins of the man,
explains Mr. Sayce in his Hibbert Lectures. [ Op.cit., p.395, note.]
(Page 192) The mystery of the woman who was made from the man is repeated in every national religion, and in Scriptures far antedating the Jewish. You find it in the Avestan fragments, in the Egyptian Book of the Dead, and finally in Brahmâ, the male, separating from himself, as a female self, Vâch, in whom he creates Virâj.
3. The two Adams of the first and second chapters in Genesis originated from garbled exoteric accounts coming from the Chaldaeans and the Egyptian Gnostics, revised later from the Persian traditions, most of which are old Aryan allegories. As Adam Kadmon is the seventh creation, [ The seventh esoterically, exoterically the sixth.] so the Adam of dust is the eighth; and in the Purânas one finds an eighth, the Anugraha creation, and the Egyptian Gnostics had it. Irenaeus, complaining of the heretics says of the Gnostics:
Sometimes they will have him [man] to have been made on the sixth day, and sometimes on the eighth. [ Contra Hereses. 1. xviii.2.]
The author of The Hebrew and Other Creations writes:
These two creations of man on the sixth day and on the eighth were those of the Adamic, or fleshly man, and of the spiritual man, who were known to Paul and the Gnostics as the first and second Adam, the man of earth and the man of Heaven. Irenaeus also says they insisted that Moses began with the Ogdoad of the Seven Powers and their mother, Sophia (the old Kefa of Egypt, who is the Living Word at Ombos). Op. cit, by Gerald Massey. p.19]
Sophia is also Aditi with her seven sons.
One might go on enumerating and tracing the Jewish “revelations” ad infinitum to their original sources, were it not that the task is superfluous, since so much is already done in that direction by others - and done thoroughly well, as in the case of Gerald Massey, who has sifted the subject to the very bottom. Hundreds of volumes, treatises, and pamphlets are being written yearly in defence of the “divine-inspiration” claim for the Bible; but symbolical and archaeological research is coming to the rescue of truth and fact - therefore of the Esoteric Doctrine - upsetting every argument based on faith and breaking it as an idol with feet of clay. A curious and learned book, The Approaching End of the Age, by H. Gratton Guinness, professes to solve the mysteries of the Bible chronology and to prove thereby God’s direct revelation to man. Among other things its author thinks that:
It is impossible to deny that a septiform chronology was divinely appointed in the elaborate ritual of Judaism.
Seven Keys to all Allegories- (Page 193) This statement is innocently accepted and firmly believed in by thousands and tens of thousands, only because they are ignorant of the Bibles of other nations. Two pages from a small pamphlet, a lecture by Mr. Gerald Massey, [Op cit., p.278 ] so upset the arguments and proofs of the enthusiastic Mr. Grattan Guinness, spread over 760 pages of small print, as to prevent them from ever raising their heads any more. Mr. Massey treats of the Fall, and says:
Here, as before, the genesis does not begin at the beginning. There was an earlier Fall than that of the Primal Pair. In this the number of those who failed and fell was seven. We meet with those seven in Egypt - eight with the mother - where they are called the “Children of Inertness,” who were cast out from Am-Smen, the Paradise of the Eight; also in a Babylonian legend of Creation, as the Seven Brethren, who were Seven Kings, like the Seven Kings in the Book of Revelation; and the Seven Non-Sentient Powers, who became the Seven Rebel Angels that made war in heaven. The Seven Kronidae, described as the Seven Watchers, who in the beginning were formed in the interior of heaven. The heaven, like a vault, they extended or hollowed out; that which was not visible they raised, and that which had no exit they opened; their work of creation being exactly identical with that of the Elohim in the Book of Genesis. These are the Seven elemental Powers of space, who were continued as Seven Timekeepers. It is said of them: “In watching was their office, but among the stars of heaven their watch they kept not,” and their failure was the Fall. In the Book of Enoch the same Seven Watchers in heaven are stars which transgressed the commandment of God before their time arrived, for they came not in their proper season, therefore was he offended with them, and bound them until the period of the consummation of their crimes, at the end of the secret, or great year of the World, i.e., the Period of Precession, when there was to be restoration and rebeginning. The Seven deposed constellations are seen by Enoch, looking like seven great blazing mountains overthrown - the seven mountains in Revelation, on which the Scarlet Lady sits.[ The Hebrew and other Creations; with a reply to Prof. A.H. Sayce, p.19.]
There are seven keys to this, as to every other allegory, whether in the Bible or in pagan religions. While Mr. Massey has hit upon the key in the mysteries of cosmogony, John Bentley in his Hindu Astronomy claims that the Fall of the Angels, or War in Heaven, as given by the Hindus, is but a figure of the calculations of time-periods, and goes on to show that among the Western nations the same war, with like results, took the form of the war of the Titans.
In short, he makes it astronomical. So does the author of The Source of Measures:
(Page 194) The celestial sphere with the earth, was divided into twelve compartments [astronomically], and these compartments were esteemed as sexed, the lords or husbands being respectively the planets presiding over them. This being the settled scheme, want of proper correction would bring it to pass, after a time, that error and confusion would ensue by the compartments coming under the lordship of the wrong planets. Instead of lawful wedlock, there would be illegal intercourse, as between the planets, “sons of Elohim.” and these compartments, “daughters of H-Adam,” or the earth-man: and in fact the fourth verse of sixth Genesis will bear this interpretation for the usual one, viz., “In the same days, or periods, there were untimely births in the earth; and also behind that, when the sons of Elohim came to the daughters of H-Adam, they begat to them the offspring of harlotry,” etc., astronomically indicating this confusion. [ Op. cit., p.243.]
Do any of these learned explanations explain anything except a possible ingenious allegory, and a personification of the celestial bodies, by the ancient Mythologists and Priests? Carried to their last word they would undeniably explain much, and would thus furnish one of the right seven keys, fitting a great many of the Biblical puzzles yet opening none naturally and entirely, instead of being scientific and cunning master-keys. But they prove one thing - that neither the septiform chronology nor the septiform theogony and evolution of all things is of divine origin in the Bible. For let us see the sources at which the Bible sipped its divine inspiration with regard to the sacred number seven. Says Mr. Massey in the same lecture:
The Book of Genesis tells us nothing about the nature of these Elohim, erroneously rendered “God,” who are creators of the Hebrew beginning, and who are themselves preextant and seated when the theatre opens and the curtain ascends. It says that in the beginning the Elohim created the heaven and the earth. In thousands of books the Elohim have been discussed, but . . . with no conclusive result . . . The Elohim are Seven in number, whether as nature-powers, gods of constellations, or planetary gods, . . . as the Pitris and Patriarchs, Manus and Fathers of earlier times. The Gnostics, however, and the Jewish Kabalah preserve an account of the Elohim of Genesis by which we are able to identify them with other forms of the seven primordial powers . . . Their names are Ildabaoth , Jehovah (or Jao), Sabaoth, Adonai, Eloeus, Orfus, and astanphaeus. Ildabaoth signifies the Lord God of the fathers, that is the fathers who preceded the Father; and thus the seven are identical with the seven Pitris or Fathers of India (Irenaeus, B.L., xxx., 5). Moreover, the Hebrew Elohim were preextant by name and nature as Phoenician divinities or powers. Sanchoniathon mentions them by name, and describes them as Auxiliaris of Kronos or Time. In this phase, then, the Elohim are timekeepers in heaven! In the Phoenician mythology the Elohim are the Seven sons of Sydik [Melchizedek], identical with the Seven Kabiri, who in Egypt are the Seven sons of Ptah, and the Seven Spirits of Ra in The Book of the Dead; . . . in America with the seven Hohgates, . . . in Assyria with the seven Lumazi . . .
Gerald Massey on the Seven Creators- (Page 195) They are always seven in number . . . who Kab - that is, turn round, together, whence the “Kab-iri.” . . . They are also the Ili or Gods, in Assyrian, who were seven in number! . . . They were first born of the Mother in Space, [ When they are the Anupâdakas (Parentless) of the Secret Doctrine. See Stanzas, i.9, Vol.i. 56.] and then the Seven Companions passed into the sphere of time as auxiliaries of Kronus, or Sons of the Male Parent. As Damascius says in his Primitive Principles, the Magi consider that space and time were the source of all; and from being powers of the air the gods were promoted to become timekeepers for men. Seven constellations were assigned to them .. . .As the seven turned round in the ark of the sphere they were designated the Seven Sailors’ Companions, Rishis, or Elohim. The first “Seven Stars” are not planetary. They are the leading stars of seven constellations which turned round with the Great Bear in describing the circle of the year. [ These originated with the Aryans, who placed therein their “bright-crested” (Chitra-Shikhandan) Seven Rishis. But all this is far more Occult than appears on the surface.] These the Assyrians called the seven Lumazi, or leaders of the flocks of stars, designated sheep. On the Hebrew line of descent or development, these Elohim are identified for us by the Kabalists and Gnostics, who retained the hidden wisdom or gnosis, the clue of which is absolutely essential to any proper understanding of mythology or theology. . . . There were two constellations with seven stars each. We call them the Two Bears. But the seven stars of the Lesser Bear were once considered to be the seven heads of the Polar Dragon, which we meet with - as the beast with seven heads - in the Akkadian Hymns and in Revelation. The mythical dragon originated in the crocodile, which is the dragon of Egypt. . . . Now in one particular cult, the Sut-Typhonian, the first god was Sevekh [the sevenfold], who wears the crocodile’s head, as well as the Serpent, and who is the Dragon or whose constellation was the Dragon. . . . In Egypt the Great Bear was the constellation of Typhon, or Kepha, the old genetrix, called the Mother of Revolutions; and the Dragon with seven heads was assigned to her son, Sevekh-Kronus, or Saturn, called the Dragon of Life. That is, the typical dragon or serpent with seven heads was female at first, and then the type was continued, as male in her son Sevekh, the Sevenfold Serpent, in Ea the Sevenfold, . . . . Iao Chnubis, and others. We find these two in The Book of Revelation. One is the Scarlet Lady, the mother of mystery, the great harlot, who sat on a scarlet-coloured beast with seven heads, which is the Red Dragon of the Pole. She held in her hand the unclean things of her fornication. That means the emblems of the male and female, imaged by the Egyptians at the Polar Centre, the very uterus of creation, as was indicated by the Thigh constellation, called the Khepsh of Typhon, the old Dragon, in the northern birthplace of Time in heaven. The two revolved about the pole of heaven, or the Tree, as it was called, which was figured at the centre of the starry motion. In The Book of Enoch these two constellations are identified as Leviathan and Behemoth-Bekhmut, or the Dragon and Hippopotamus=Great Bear, and they are the primal pair that were first created in the Garden of Eden. So that the Egyptian first (Page 196) mother, Kefa [or Kepha] whose name signifies “mystery,” was the original of the Hebrew Chavah, our Eve; and therefore Adam is one with Sevekh the sevenfold one, the solar dragon in whom the powers of light and darkness were combined, and the sevenfold nature was shown in the seven rays worn by the Gnostic Iao-Chnubis, god of the number seven, who is Sevekh by name and a form of the first father as head of the Seven. [ Op.cit., pp. 19-22 ]
All this gives the key to the astronomical prototype of the allegory in Genesis, but it furnishes no other key to the mystery involved in the sevenfold glyph. The able Egyptologist shows also that Adam himself according to Rabbinical and Gnostic tradition, was the chief of the Seven who fell from Heaven, and he connects these with the Patriarchs, thus agreeing with the Esoteric Teaching. For by mystic permutation and the mystery of primeval rebirths and adjustment, the Seven Rishis are in reality identical with the seven Prajâpatis, the fathers and creators of mankind, and also with the Kumâras, the first sons of Brahmâ, who refused to procreate and multiply. This apparent contradiction is explained by the sevenfold nature - make it fourfold on metaphysical principles and it will come to the same thing - of the celestial men, the Dhyan Chohans. This nature is made to divide and separate; and while the higher principles (Atma-Buddhi) of the “Creators of Men” are said to be the Spirits of the seven constellations, their middle and lower principles are connected with the earth and are shown.
Without desire or passion, inspired with holy wisdom, estranged from the Universe and undesirous of progeny, [Vishnu Purana, Wilson’s Translation, I, 101. The period of these Kumaras is Pre-Adamic. i.e. before the separation of the sexes, and before humanity had received the creative, or sacred, fire of Prometheus.]
Kaumâric (virgin and undefiled): therefore it is said they refuse to create.
For this they are cursed and sentenced to be born and reborn “Adams,”
as the Semites would say.
Meanwhile let me quote a few lines more from Mr. G. Massey’s lecture, the fruit of his long researches in Egyptology and other ancient lore, as it shows that the septenary division was at one time a universal doctrine:
Adam as the father among the Seven is identical with the Egyptians Atum, . . . whose other name of Adon is identical with the Hebrew Adonai. In this way the second Creation in Genesis reflects and continues the later creation in the mythos which explains it. The Fall of Adam to the lower world led to his being humanised on earth, by which process the celestial was turned into the mortal, and this, which belongs to the astronomical allegory, got literalised as the Fall of Man, or descent of the soul into matter, and the conversion of the angelic into an earthly being . . . .
The Father and Mother-
(Page 197) It is found in the [Babylonian] texts, when Ea, the first father, is said to “grant forgiveness to the conspiring gods,” for whose “redemption did he create mankind.” (Sayce; Hib. Lec.,p. 140) . . . The Elohim, then, are the Egyptian, Akkadian, Hebrew, and Phoenician form of the universal Seven Powers, who are Seven in Egypt, Seven in Akkad, Babylon, Persia, India, Britain, and Seven among the Gnostics and Kabalists. They were the Seven fathers who preceded the Father in Heaven, because they were earlier than the individualised fatherhood on earth . . .
When the Elohim said: “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” there were seven of them who represented the seven elements, powers, or souls that went to the making of the human being who came into existence before the Creator was represented anthropomorphically, or could have conferred the human likeness on the Adamic man. It was in the sevenfold image of the Elohim that was first created, with his seven elements, principles, or souls, [ The Secret Doctrine says that this was the second creation, nor the first, and that it took place during the Third Race, when men separated, i.e., began to be born as distinct men and women. See Vol. ii. of this work, Stanzas and Commentaries.] and therefore he could not have been formed in the image of the one God. The seven Gnostic Elohim tried to make a man in their own image, but could not for lack of virile power. [ This is a Western mangling of the Indian doctrine of the Kumaras.] Thus their creation in earth and heaven was a failure . . . because they themselves were lacking in the soul of the fatherhood! When the Gnostic Ildabaoth, [ He was regarded by several Gnostic sects as one with Jehovah. See Isis Unveiled, vol ii., p.184.] chief of the Seven, cried: “I am the father and God,” his mother Sophia [Achamoth] replied: “Do not tell lies, Ildabaoth, for the first man (Anthropos, son of Anthropos [ Or “man, son of man.” The Church found in this a prophecy and a confession of Christ, the “Son of Man!”] ) is above thee.” That is, man who had now been created in the image of the fatherhood was superior to the gods who were derived from the Mother-Parent alone! [ See Stanza ii., Secret Doctrine. ii.16.] For, as it had been first on earth, so was it afterwards in heaven [the Secret Doctrine reaches the reverse]; and thus the primary gods were held to be soulless like the earliest races of men . . . . The Gnostics taught that the Spirits of Wickedness, the inferior Seven, derived their origin from the great Mother alone, who produced without the fatherhood! It was in the image, then, of the sevenfold Elohim that the seven races were formed which we sometimes hear of as the Pre-Adamite races of men, because they were earlier than the fatherhood, which was individualised only in the second Hebrew Creation. [ See Stanza ii.,5, Secret Doctrine. ii.16 ]
This shows sufficiently how the echo of the Secret Doctrine - of the Third and Fourth Races of men, made complete by the incarnation in humanity of the Manasa Putra, Sons of Intelligence or Wisdom - reached every corner of the globe. The Jews, however, although they borrowed of the older nations the groundwork on which to build their (Page 198) revelation, never had more than three keys out of the seven in their mind, while composing their national allegories - the astronomical, or numerical (metrology) and above all the purely anthropological, or rather physiological key. This resulted in the most phallic religion of all, and has now passed, part and parcel, into Christian theology, as is proved by the lengthy quotations made from a lecture of an able Egyptologist, who can make naught of it save astronomical myths and phallicism, as is implied by his explanations of “fatherhood” in the allegories.
The “Zohar” on Creation and the Elohim
(Page 199) THE opening sentence in Genesis, as every Hebrew scholar knows, is:
Now there are two well-known ways of rendering this line, as any other Hebrew writing: one exoteric, as read by the orthodox Bible interpreters (Christian), and the other Kabalistic, the latter, moreover, being divided into the Rabbinical and the purely Kabalistic or Occult method. As in Sanskrit writing, the words are not separated in the Hebrew, but are made to run together - especially in the old systems. For instance, the above, divided, would read: “B’rashith bara Elohim eth hashamayim v’eth h’areths;” and it can be made to read thus: “B’rash ithbara Elohim ethhashamayim v’eth’arets,” thus changing the meaning entirely. The latter means, “In the beginning God made the heavens and the earth,” whereas the former, precluding the idea of any beginning, would simply read that “out of the ever-existing Essence [divine] [or out of the womb - also head - thereof] the dual [or androgyne] Force [Gods] shaped the double heaven;” the upper and the lower heaven being generally explained as heaven and earth. The latter word means Esoterically the “Vehicle,” as it gives the idea of an empty globe, within which the manifestation of the world takes place. Now, according to the rules of Occult symbolical reading as established in the old Sepher Jetzirah (in the Chaldaean Book of Numbers) [ The Sepher Jetzirah now known is but a portion of the original one incorporated in the Chaldean Book of Numbers. The fragment now in possession of the Western Kabalists is one greatly tampered with by the Rabbis of the Middle Ages, as its masoretic points show. The “Masorah” scheme is a modern blind, dating after our era and perfected in Tiberias. (See Isis Unveiled. vol. ii. pp. 430-431.) ] the initial fourteen letters (or “B’rasitb’ raalaim”) are in themselves quite sufficient to explain the theory of “creation” without any further explanation (Page 200) or qualification. Every letter of them is a sentence; and, placed side by side with the hieroglyphic or pictorial initial version of “creation” in the Book of Dzyan, the origin of the Phoenician and Jewish letters would soon be found out. A whole volume of explanations would give no more to the student of primitive Occult Symbology than this: the head of a bull within a circle, a straight horizontal line, a circle or sphere, then another one with three dots in it, a triangle, then the Svastika (or Jaina cross); after these come an equilateral triangle within a circle, seven small bulls’ heads standing in three rows, one over the other; a black round dot (an opening), and then seven lines, meaning Chaos or Water (feminine).
Anyone acquainted with the symbolical and numerical value of the Hebrew letters will see at a glance that this glyph and the letters of “B’rasitb’ raalaim” are identical in meaning. “Beth” is “abode” or “region;” “Resh,” a “circle” of “head;” “Aleph,” “bull” (the symbol of generative or creative power); [ In the oldest symbolism - that used in the Egyptian hieroglyphics - when the bull’s head only is found it means the Deity, the Perfect Circle, with the procreative power latent in it. When the whole bull is represented, a solar God, a personal deity is meant, for it is then the symbol of the acting generative power.] “Shin,” a “tooth” (300 exoterically - a trident or three in one in its Occult meaning); “Jodh,” the perfect unity or “one” ; [ It took three Root-Races to degrade the symbol of the One Abstract Unity manifested in Nature as a Ray emanating from infinity (the Circle) into a phallic symbol of generation, as it was even in the Kabalah. This degradation began with the Fourth Race, and had its raison d’etre in Polytheism, as the latter was invented to screen the One Universal Deity from profanation. The Christians may plead ignorance of its meaning as an excuse for its acceptance. But why sing never-ceasing laudations to the Mosaic Jews who repudiated all the other Gods, preserved the most phallic, and then most impudently proclaimed themselves Monotheists? Jesus ever steadily ignored Jehovah. He went against the Mosaic commandments. He recognized his Heavenly Father alone, and prohibited public worship.] “Tau,” the “root” or “foundation” (the same as the cross with the Egyptians and Aryans): again, “Beth,” “Resh,” and “Aleph.” Then “Aleph,” or seven bulls for the seven Alaim: an ox-goad, “Lamedh,” active procreation; “He,” the “opening” or “matrix:” “Yodh,” the organ of procreation; and “Mem,” “water” or “chaos,” the female Power near the male that precedes it.
The most satisfactory and scientific exoteric rendering of the opening sentence of Genesis - on which was hung in blind faith the whole Christian religion, synthesized by its fundamental dogmas - is undeniably the one given in the Appendix to The Source of Measures by Mr. Ralston Skinner. He gives, and we must admit in the ablest, clearest, and most scientific way, the numerical reading of this first sentence and chapter in Genesis.
Angels as Builders- (Page 201) By the means of number 31, or the word “El” (1 for Aleph” and 30 for “Lamedh”), and other numerical Bible symbols, compared with the measures used in the great pyramid of Egypt, he shows the perfect identity between its measurements - inches, cubits, and plan - and the numerical values of the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve, and the Patriarchs. In short, the author shows that the pyramid contains in itself architecturally the whole of Genesis, and discloses the astronomical, and even the physiological, secrets in its symbols and glyphs; yet he will not admit, it would seem, the psycho-cosmical and spiritual mysteries involved in these. Nor does the author apparently see that the root of all this has to be sought in the archaic legends and the Pantheon of India. [ Is it everything to have found out that the celestial circle of 360 degrees is determined by “the full word-form of Elohim,” and that this yields, when the word is placed in a circle, “3'1415, or the relation of circumference to a diameter of one.” This is only its astronomical or mathematical aspect. To know the full septenary significance of the “Primordial Circle,” the pyramid and the Kabalistic Bible must be read in the light of the figure on which the temples of India are built. The mathematical squaring of the circle is only the terrestrial résumé of the problem. The Jews were content with the six days of activity and the seventh of rest. The progenitors of mankind solved the greatest problem of the Universe with their seven Rays or Rishis.] Failing this, whither does his great and admirable labour lead him? Not further than to find out that Adam, the earth, and Moses of Jehovah “are the same” - or to the a-b-c of comparative Occult Symbology - and that the days in Genesis being “circles” “displayed by the Hebrews as squares,” the result of the sixth-day’s labour culminates in the fructifying principle. Thus the Bible is made to yield Phallicism, and that alone.
Nor - read in this light, and as its Hebrew texts are interpreted by Western scholars - can it ever yield anything higher or more sublime than such phallic elements, the root and the corner-stone of its dead-letter meaning. Anthropomorphism and Revelation dig the impassable chasm between the material world and the ultimate spiritual truths. That creation is not thus described in the Esoteric Doctrine is easily shown. The Roman Catholics give a reading far more approaching the true Esoteric meaning than that of the Protestant. For several of their saints and doctors admit that the formation of heaven and earth of the celestial bodies, etc., belongs to the work of the “Seven Angels of the Presence.” St. Denys calls the “Builders” “the coöperators of God,” and St. Augustine goes even farther, and credits the Angels with the possession of the divine thought, the prototype, as he says, of everything created.[ Genesis begins with the third stage of “creation,” skipping the preliminary two.] And, finally, St. Thomas Aquinas has a long (Page 202) dissertation upon this topic, calling God the primary, and the Angels the secondary, cause of all visible effects. In this, with some dogmatic differences of form, the “Angelic Doctor” approaches very nearly the Gnostic ideas. Basilides speaks of the lowest order of Angels as the Builders of our material world, and Saturnilus held, as did the Sabaeans, that the Seven Angels who preside over the planets are the real creators of the world; the Kabalist-monk, Trithemius, in his De Secundis Deis, taught the same.
The eternal Kosmos, the Macrocosm, is divided in the Secret Doctrine, like man, the Microcosm, into three Principles and four Vehicles, [ The three root-principles are, exoterically: Man, Soul, and Spirit (meaning by “man” the intelligent personality), and esoterically: Life, Soul, and Spirit: the four vehicles are Body, Astral double, Animal (or human) Soul, and Divine Soul (Sthula-Sharira, Linga-Sharira, Kâma-rûpa, and Buddhi, the vehicle of Atma or Spirit). Or, to make it still clearer: (1) the seventh Principle has for its vehicle the Sixth (Buddhi): (2) the vehicle of Manas is Kâma-rûpa; (3) that of Jiva or Prana (life) is the Linga-Sharira (the “double” of man: the Linga-Sharira proper can never leave the body till death; that which appears is an astral body, reflecting the physical body and serving as a vehicle for the human soul, or intelligence); and (4) the Body, the physical vehicle of all the above collectively. The Occultist recognizes the same order as existing for the cosmical totality, the psycho-cosmical Universe.] which in their collectivity are the seven Principles. In the Chaldaean of Jewish Kabalah, the Kosmos is divided into seven worlds: the Original, the Intelligible, the Celestial, the Elementary, the Lesser (Astral), the Infernal (Kâma-loka or Hades), and the Temporal (of man). In the Chaldaean system it is in the Intelligible World, the second, that appear the “Seven Angels of the Presence,” or the Sephiroth (the three higher ones being, in fact, one, and also the sum total of all). They are also the “Builders” of the Eastern Doctrine: and it is only in the third, the celestial world, that the seven planets and our solar system are built by the seven Planetary Angels, the planets becoming their visible bodies. Hence - as correctly stated - if the universe as a whole is formed out of the Eternal One Substance or Essence, it is not that everlasting Essence, the Absolute Deity, that builds it into shape; this is done by the first Rays, the Angels or Dhyân Chohans, that emanate from the One Element, which becoming periodically Light and Darkness, remains eternally, in its Root-Principle, the one unknown, yet existing Reality.
A learned Western Kabalist. Mr. S. L. MacGregor Mathers, whose reasoning and conclusions will be the more above suspicion since he is untrained in Eastern Philosophy and unacquainted with its Secret Teachings, writes on the first verse of Genesis in an unpublished essay:
Berashith Bara Elohim - “in the beginning the Elohim created!” Who are these Elohim of Genesis?
Who are the Elohim?
Attention must here be called to the confusion - if not worse - which reigns in the Western interpretations of the Kabalah. The eternal One is said to conform himself into two: the Great Father and Mother of Nature. To begin with, it is a horribly anthropomorphic conception to apply terms implying sexual distinction to the earliest and first differentiations of the One. And it is even more erroneous to identify these first differentiations - the Purusha and Prakriti of Indian Philosophy - with the Elohim, the creative powers here spoken of; and to ascribe to these (to our intellects) unimaginable abstractions, the formation and construction of this visible world, full of pain, sin, and sorrow. In truth, the “creation by the Elohim” spoken of here is but a much later “creation,” and the Elohim, far from being supreme, or even exalted powers in Nature, are only lower Angels. This was the teaching of the Gnostics, the most philosophical of all the early Christian Churches. They taught that the imperfections of the world were due to the imperfection of its Architects or Builders - the imperfect, and therefore inferior, Angels. The Hebrew Elohim correspond to the Prajâpati of the Hindus, and it is shown elsewhere from the Esoteric interpretation of the Purânas that the Prajâpati were the fashioners of man’s material and astral form only: that they could not give him intelligence or reason, and therefore in symbolical language they “failed to create man.” But, not to repeat what the reader can find elsewhere in this work, his attention needs only to be called to the fact that “creation” in this passage is not the Primary Creation, and that the Elohim are not “God,” nor even the higher Planetary Spirits, but the Architects of this visible physical planet and of man’s material body, or encasement.
(Page 203) Va-Vivra Elohim Ath Ha-Adam Be-Tzalmo, Be-Tzelem Elohim Bara Otho. Zakhar Vingebah Bara Otham - “And the Elohim created the Adam in Their own Image, in the Image of the Elohim created They them, Male and Female created They them!” Who are they, the Elohim? The ordinary English translation of the Bible renders the word Elohim by “God:” it translates a plural noun by a singular one. The only excuse brought forward for this is the somewhat lame one that the word is certainly plural, but is not to be used in a plural sense: that it is “a plural denoting excellence.” But this is only an assumption whose value may be justly gauged by Genesis i. 26, translated in the orthodox Biblical version thus: “And God [Elohim] said, ‘Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness.’” Here is a distinct admission of the fact that “Elohim” is not a “plural of excellence,” but a plural noun denoting more than one being. [ St. Denys, the Areopagite, the supposed contemporary of St. Paul, his co-disciple, and first Bishop of St. Denis, near Paris, teaches that the bulk of the “work of creation” was performed by the “Seven Spirits of the Presence” - God’s co-operators, owing to a participation of the divinity in them. (Hierarch., p.196) And St. Augustine also thinks that “things were rather created in the angelic minds than in Nature, that is to say, that the angels perceived and knew them (all things) in their thoughts before they could spring forth into actual existence.” (Vid De Genesis ad Litteram p.11.) (Summarized from De Mirville. Vol.II., pp. 337-338.) Thus the early Christian Fathers, even a non-initiate like St-Augustine, ascribed the creation of the visible world to Angels, or Secondary Powers, while St. Denys not only specifies these as the “Seven Spirits of the Presence,” but shows them owing their power to the informing divine energy - Fohat in the Secret Doctrine. But the egotistical darkness which caused the Western races to cling so desperately to the Geo-centric System, made them also neglect and despise all those fragments of the true Religion which would have deprived them and the little globe they took for the centre of the Universe of the signal honour of having been expressly “created” by the One, Secondless, Infinite God! ]
What, then, is the proper translation of “Elohim,” and to whom is it referable? “Elohim” is not only a plural, but a feminine plural! And yet the translators of the Bible have rendered it by a masculine singular! Elohim is the plural of the feminine noun El-h, for the final letter, -h, marks the gender. It, however, instead of forming the plural in -oth, takes the usual termination of the masculine plural, which is -im.
Although in the great majority of cases the nouns of both genders take the terminations appropriated to them respectively, there are yet many masculines which form the plural in -oth, as well as feminine which form it in -im while some nouns of each gender take alternately both. It must be observed, however, that the termination of the plural does not affect its gender, which remains the same as in the singular . . .
To find the real meaning of the symbolism involved in this word Elohim we must go to that key of Jewish Esoteric Doctrine, the little-known and less-understood Kabalah. There we shall find that this word represents two united masculine and feminine Potencies, co-equal and co-eternal, conjoined in everlasting union for the maintenance of the Universe - the great Father and Mother of Nature, into whom the Eternal One conforms himself before the Universe can subsist. For the teaching of the Kabalah is that before the Deity conformed himself thus - i.e., as (Page 204) male and female - the Worlds of the Universe could not subsist; or in the words of Genesis, that “the earth was formless and void.” Thus, then, is the conformation of the Elohim, the end of the Formless and the Void and the Darkness, for only after conformation can the Ruach Elohim - the “Spirit of the Elohim” - vibrate upon the countenance of the Waters. But this is a very small part of the information which the Initiate can derive from the Kabalah concerning this word Elohim.
A fundamental doctrine of the Kabalah is that the gradual development of the Deity from negative to positive Existence is symbolized by the gradual development of the Ten Numbers of the denary scale of numeration, from the Zero, through the Unity, into the plurality. This is the doctrine of the Sephiroth, or Emanations.
For the inward and concealed Negative Form concentrates a centre which is the primal Unity. But the Unity is one and indivisible: it can neither be increased by multiplication nor decreased by division, for 1x1=1, and no more; and 1 divided by1 = 1, and no less. And it is this changelessness of the Unity or Monad, which makes it a fitting type of the One and Changeless Deity. It answers thus to the Christian idea of God the Father, for as the Unity is the parent of the other numbers, so is the Deity the Father of All.
Monad, Duad, and Triad- (Page 205) The philosophical Eastern mind would never fall into the error which the connotation of these words implies. With them the “One and Changeless” - Parabrahman - the Absolute All and One, cannot be conceived as standing in any relation to things finite and conditioned, and hence they would never use such terms as these, which in their very essence imply such a relation. Do they, then, absolutely sever man from God? On the contrary. They feel a closer union than the Western mind has done in calling God the “Father of All,” for they know that in his immortal essence man is himself the Changeless, Secondless One.
But we have just said that the Unity is one and changeless by either multiplication or division; how then is two, the Duad, formed? By reflection. For, unlike Zero, the Unity is partly definable - that is, in its positive aspect; and the definition creates an Eikon or Eidolon of itself which, together with itself, forms a Duad; and thus the number two is to a certain extent analogous to the Christian idea of the Son as the Second Person. And as the Monad vibrates, and recoils into the Darkness of the Primary Thought, so is the Duad left as its vice-gerent and representative, and thus co-equal and co-eternal with the Duad in the bosom of the Unity, yet, as it were, proceeding therefrom in the numerical conception of its sequence.
This explanation would seem to imply that Mr. Mathers is aware that this “creation” is not the truly divine or primary one, since the Monad - the first manifestation on our plane of objectivity - “recoils into the Darkness of the Primal Thought,” i.e., into the subjectivity of the first divine Creation.
And this, again, also partly answers to the Christian idea of the Holy Ghost, and of the whole three forming a Trinity in unity. This also explains the fact in geometry of the three right lines being the smallest number which will make a plane rectilineal figure, while two can never enclose a space, being powerless and without effect till completed by the number Three. These three first numbers of the decimal scale the Qabalists call by the names of Kether, the Crown, Chokmah, Wisdom, and Binah, Understanding; and they furthermore associate with them these divine names: with the Unity, Eheich, “I exist;” with the Duad, Yah; and with the Triad, Elohim; they especially also call the Duad, Abba - the Father and the Triad, Aima - the Mother, whose eternal conjunction is symbolized in the word Elohim.
But what especially strikes the student of the Kabalah is the malicious persistency (Page 206) with which the translators of the Bible have jealously crowded out of sight and suppressed every reference to the feminine form of the Deity. They have, as we have just seen, translated the feminine plural “Elohim,” by the masculine singular, “God.” But they have done more than this: they have carefully hidden the fact that the word Ruach - the “Spirit” - is feminine, and that consequently the Holy Ghost of the New Testament is a feminine Potency. How many Christians are cognizant of the fact that in the account of the Incarnation in Luke (i.35) two divine Potencies are mentioned?
“The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the Power of the Highest shall overshadow thee.” The Holy Ghost (the feminine Potency) descends, and the Power of the Highest (the masculine Potency) is united therewith. “Therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” - of the Elohim namely, seeing that these two Potencies descend.
the Sepher Yetzirah, or Book of Formation, we read:
“One is She the Ruach Elohim Chum - (Spirit of the Living Elohim). . . . Voice, Spirit, and Word; and this is She, the Spirit of the Holy One.” Here again we see the intimate connection which exists between the Holy Spirit and the Elohim. Furthermore, farther on in this same Book of Formation - which is be it remembered, one of the oldest of the Kabalistical Books, and whose authorship is ascribed to Abraham the Patriarch - we shall find the idea of a Feminine Trinity in the first place, from whom a masculine Trinity proceeds; or as it is said in the text: “Three Mothers whence proceed three Fathers.” And yet this double Triad forms, as it were, but one complete Trinity. Again it is worthy of note that the Second and Third Sephiroth (Wisdom and Understanding) are both distinguished by feminine names, Chokmah and Binah, notwithstanding that to the former more particularly the masculine idea, and to the latter the feminine, are attributed, under the titles of Abba and Aima (or Father and Mother). This Aima (the Great Mother) is magnificently symbolized in the twelfth chapter of the Apocalypse, which is undoubtedly one of the most Kabalistical books in the Bible. In fact, without the Kabalistical keys its meaning is utterly unintelligible.
Now, in the Hebrew, as in the Greek, alphabet, there are no distinct numeral characters, and consequently each letter has a certain numerical value attached to it. From this circumstance results the important fact that every Hebrew word constitutes a number, and every number a word. This is referred to in the Revelations (xiii. 18) in mentioning the “number of the beast”! In the Kabalah words of equal numerical values are supposed to have a certain explanatory connection with each other. This forms the science of Gematria, which is the first division of the Literal Kabalah. Furthermore, each letter of the Hebrew alphabet had for the Initiates of the Kabalah a certain hieroglyphical value and meaning which, rightly applied, gave to each word the value of a mystical sentence; and this again was variable according to the relative positions of the letters with regard to each other. From these various Kabalistical points of view let us now examine this word Elohim.
First then we can divide the word into the two words, which signify “The Feminine Divinity of the Waters;” compare with the Greek Aphrodite, “sprung from the foam of the sea.”
The Creative Gods
(Page 207) Again it is divisive into the “Mighty One, Star of the Sea,” or “the Mighty One breathing forth the Spirit upon the Waters.” Also by combination of the letters we get “the Silent Power of Iah.” And again, “My God, the Former of the Universe,” for Mah is a secret Kabalistical name applied to the idea of Formation. Also we obtain “Who is my God.” Furthermore “the Mother in Iah.”
The total number is 1+30+5+10+40=86 “Violent heat,” or “the Power of Fire.” If we add together the three middle letters we obtain 45, and the first the last letter yield 41, making thus “the Mother of Formation.” Lastly, we shall find the two divine names “El” and “Yah,” together with the letter m, which signifies “Water,” for Mem, the name of this letter, means “water.”
we divide it into its component letters and take them as hieroglyphical signs
we shall have:
The last few paragraphs of the above, in which the word “Elohim” is Kabalistically analysed, show conclusively enough that the Elohim are not one, nor two, nor even a trinity, but a Host - the army of the creative powers.
“Will perfected through Sacrifice progressing through successive Transformation by Inspiration.”
The Christian Church, in making of Jehovah - one of these very Elohim - the one Supreme God, has introduced hopeless confusion into the celestial hierarchy, in spite of the volumes written by Thomas Aquinas and his school on the subject. The only explanation to be found in all their treatises on the nature and essence of the numberless classes of celestial beings mentioned in the Bible - Archangels, Thrones, Seraphim, Cherubim, Messengers, etc. - is that “The angelic host is God’s militia.” They are “Gods the creatures,” while he is “God the Creator,” but of their true functions - of their actual place in the economy of Nature - not one word is said. They are
More brilliant than the flames, more rapid than the wind, and they live in love and harmony, mutually enlightening each other, feeding on bread and a mystic beverage - the communion wine and water? - surrounding as with a river of fire the throne of the Lamb, and veiling their faces with their wings. This throne of love and glory they leave only to carry to the stars, the earth, the kingdoms and all the sons of God, their brothers and pupils, in short, to all creatures like themselves the divine influence. . . . As to their number, it is that of the great army of Heaven (Sabaoth), more numerous than the stars . . . . Theology shows us these rational luminaries, each constituting a species, and containing in their natures such or another position of Nature covering immense space, though of a determined area; residing - incorporeal though they are - within circumscribed limits; . . . . more rapid than light or thunderbolt, disposing of all the elements of Nature, providing at will inexplicable mirages [illusions?], objective and subjective (Page 208) in turn, speaking to men a language at one time articulate, at another purely spiritual. [ De Mirville, ii. 295.]
We learn farther on in the same work that it is these Angels and their hosts who are referred to in the sentence of verse I, chapter ii. of Genesis: Igitur perfecti sunt coeli et terra et omnis ornatus eorum:” and that the Vulgate has peremptorily substituted for the Hebrew word “tsaba” (“host” that of “ornament;” Munck shows the mistake of substitution and the derivation of the compound title, “Tsabaoth-Elohim,” from “tsaba.” Moreover, Cornelius a Lapide, “the master of all Biblical commentators,” says de Mirville, shows us that such was the real meaning. Those Angels are stars.
All this, however, teaches us very little as to the true functions of this celestial army, and nothing at all as to its place in evolution and its relation to the earth we live on. For an answer to the question. “Who are the true Creators?” we must go to the Esoteric Doctrine, since there only can the key be found which will render intelligible the Theogonies of the various world-religions.
There we find that the real creator of the Kosmos, as of all visible Nature - if not of all the invisible hosts of Spirits not yet drawn into the “Cycle of Necessity,” or evolution - is “the Lord - the Gods,” or the “Working Host,” the “Army” collectively taken, the “One in many.”
One is infinite and unconditioned. It cannot create, for It can have to relation
to the finite and conditioned. If everything we see, from the glorious suns
and planets down to the blades of grass and the specks of dust, had been created
by the Absolute Perfection and were the direct work of even the First Energy
that proceeded from It, [ To the Occultists and Chela the difference
made between Energy and Emanation need not be explained. The Sanskrit
word “Sakti” is untranslatable. It may be Energy, but it is one
that proceeds through itself, not being due to the active or conscious will
of the one that produces it. The “First-Born,” or Logos, is not
an Emanation, but an Energy inherent in and co-eternal with Parabrahman, the
One. The Zohar speaks of emanations, but reserves the word for the seven
Sephiroth emanated from the first three - which form one triad - Kether, Chokmah,
and Binah. As for these three, it explains the difference by calling them “immanations,”
something inherent to and coeval with the subject postulated, or in other words,”
It is these “Auxiliaries,” the Auphanim, the half human Prajâpatis, the Angels, the Architects under the leadership of the “Angel of the Great Council,” with the rest of the Kosmos-Builders of other nations, that can alone explain the imperfection of the Universe. This imperfection is one of the arguments of the Secret Science in favour of the existence and activity of these “Powers.” And who know better than the few philosophers of our civilised lands how near the truth Philo was in ascribing the origin of evil to the admixture of inferior potencies in the arrangement of matter, and even in the formation of man - a task entrusted to the divine Logos.] then every such thing would have been perfect, eternal, and unconditioned like its author.
God the Host- (Page 209) The millions upon millions of imperfect works found in Nature testify loudly that they are the products of finite, conditioned beings - though the latter were and are Dhyân Chohans, Archangels, or whatever else they may be named. In short, these imperfect works are the unfinished production of evolution, under the guidance of the imperfect Gods. The Zohar gives us this assurance as well as the Secret Doctrine. It speaks of the auxiliaries of the “Ancient of Days,” the “Sacred Aged,” and calls them Auphanim, or the living Wheels of the celestial orbs, who participate in the work of the creation of the Universe.
Thus it is not the “Principle,” One and Unconditioned, nor even Its reflection, that creates, but only the “Seven Gods” who fashion the Universe out of the eternal Matter, vivified into objective life by the reflection into it of the One Reality.
The Creator is they - “God the Host” - called in the Secret Doctrine the Dhyan Chohans; with the Hindus the Prajâpatis; with the Western Kabalists the Sephiroth; and with the Buddhist the Devas - impersonal because blind forces. They are the Amshaspends with the Zoroastrians, and while with the Christian Mystic the “Creator” is the “Gods of the God,” with the dogmatic Churchman he is the “God of the Gods,” the “Lord of lords,” etc.
is only the God who is greater than all Gods in the eyes of Israel.
I know, that the lord [of Israel] is great and that our Lord is above all gods.[ Psalms cxxxv. 5.]
For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the Lord made the heavens. [Psalms xcvi.5.]
The Egyptian Neteroo, translated by Champollion “the other Gods,” are the Elohim of the Biblical writers, behind which stands concealed the One God, considered in the diversity of his powers. [ Rather as Ormazd or Ahura-Mazda, Vit-nam-Ahmi, and all the unmanifested Logoi. Jehovah is the manifested Virâj, corresponding to Binah, the third Sephira in the Kabalah, a female Power which would find its prototype rather in the Prajâpati, than in Brahma, the Creator.] This One is not Parabrahman, but the Unmanifested Logos, the Demiurgos, the real Creator or Fashioner, that follows him, standing for the Demiurgi collectively taken. Further on the great Egyptologist adds:
We see Egypt concealing and hiding, so to say, the God of Gods behind the agents she surrounds him with ; she gives the precedence to her great gods before the one (Page 210) and sole Deity, so that the attributes of that God become their property. Those great Gods proclaim themselves uncreate . . . . Neith is ‘that which is ,” as Jehovah; [ Neith is Aditi, evidently.] Thoth is self-created [ The Self-created Logos, Narâyana, Purushottama, and others.] without having been begotten, etc. Judaism annihilating these potencies before the grandeur of its God, they cease to be simply Powers, like Philo’s Archangels, like the Sephiroth of the Kabalah, like the Ogdoades of the Gnostics - they merge together and become transformed into God himself. [ Mère d'Apis. pp. 32-35. Quoted by De Mirville.]
Jehovah is thus, as the Kabalah teaches, at best but the “Heavenly Man,” Adam Kadmon, used by the self-created Spirit, the Logos, as a chariot, a vehicle in His descent towards manifestation in the phenomenal world.
Such are the teachings of the Archaic Wisdom, nor can they be repudiated even by the orthodox Christian, if he be sincere and open-minded in the study of his own Scripture. For if he reads St. Paul’s Epistles carefully he will find that the Secret Doctrine and the Kabalah are fully admitted by the “Apostle of the Gentiles.” The Gnosis which he appears to condemn is no less for him than for Plato “the supreme knowledge of the truth and of the One Being;” [ See Republic. I. vi.] for what St. Paul condemns is not the true, but only the false, Gnosis and its abuses: otherwise how could he use the language of a Platonist pur sang? The Ideas, types (Archai), of the Greek Philosopher; the Intelligences of Pythagoras; the Aeons or Emanations of the Pantheist; the Logos or Word, Chief of these intelligences; the Sophia or Wisdom; the Demiurgos, the Builder of the world under the direction of the Father, the Unmanifested Logos, from which He emanates; Ain-Suph, the Unknown of the Infinite; the angelic Periods; the Seven Spirits who are the representatives of the Seven of all the older cosmogonies - are all to be found in his writings, recognized by the Church as canonical and divinely inspired. Therein, too, may be recognized the Depths of Ahriman, Rector of this our World, the “God of this World;” the Pleroma of the Intelligences; the Archontes of the air; the Principalities, the Kabalistic Metatron; and they can easily be identified again in the Roman Catholic writers when read in the original Greek and Latin texts, English translations giving but a very poor idea of the real contents of these.
What the Occultists and Kabalists Have to Say
(Page 211) THE Zohar, an unfathomable store of hidden wisdom and mystery, is very often appealed to by Roman Catholic writers. A very learned Rabbi, now the Chevalier Drach, having been converted to Roman Catholicism, and being a great Hebraist, thought fit to step into the shoes of Picus de Mirando and John Reuchlin, and to assure his new co-religionists that the Zohar contained in it pretty nearly all the dogmas of Catholicism. It is not our province to show here how far he has succeeded or failed; only to bring one instance of his explanations and preface it with the following.
The Zohar, is already shown, is not a genuine production of the Hebrew mind. It is the repository and compendium of the oldest doctrine of the East transmitted orally at first, and then written down in independent treatises during the Captivity at Babylon, and finally brought together by Rabbi Simeon Ben Iochai, toward the beginning of the Christian era. As Mosaic cosmogony was born under a new form in Mesopotamian countries, so the Zohar was a vehicle in which were focussed rays from the light of Universal Wisdom. Whatever likenesses are found between it and the Christian teachings, the compilers of the Zohar never had Christ in their minds. Were it otherwise there would not be one single Jew of the Mosaic law left in the world by this time. Again, if one is to accept literally what the Zohar says, then any religion under the sun may find corroboration in its symbols and allegorical sayings; and this, simply because this work is the echo of the primitive truths, and every creed is founded on some of these; the Zohar being but a veil of the Secret Doctrine. This is so evident that we have only to point to the said ex-Rabbi, the Chevalier Drach, to prove the fact.
(Page 212) In Part III, fol. 87 (col. 346th) the Zohar treats of the Spirit guiding the Sun, its Rector, explaining that it is not the Sun itself that is meant thereby, but the Spirit “on, or under” the Sun. Drach is anxious to show that it was Christ who was meant by that “Sun,” or the Solar Spirit therein. In his comment upon that passage which refers to the Solar Spirit as “that stone which the builders rejected,” he asserts most positively that this
Sun-stone (pierre soleil) is identical with Christ, who was that stone,
and that therefore
The sun is undeniably (sans contredit) the second hypostasis of the Deity, [Harmonie entre l’Eglise et la Synagogue. t. 11., p.427 by the Chevalier Drach. See de Mirville.] or Christ.
If this be true, then the Vaidic or pre-Vaidic Aryans, Chaldaeans and Egyptians, like all Occultists past, present, and future, Jews included, have been Christians from all eternity. If this be not so, then modern Church Christianity is Paganism pure and simple exoterically, and transcendental and practical Magic or Occultism, Esoterically.
For this “stone” has a manifold significance, a dual existence, with gradations, a regular progression and retrogression. It is a “mystery” indeed.
The Occultists are quite ready to agree with St. Chrystostom, that the infidels - the profane, rather -
Being blinded by sun-light, thus lose sight of the true Sun in the contemplation of the false one.
But if that Saint, and along with him now the Hebraist Drach, chose to see in the Zohar and the Kabalistic Sun “ the second hypostasis,” this is no reason why all others should be blinded by them. The mystery of the Sun is the grandest perhaps, of all the innumerable mysteries of Occultism. A Gordian knot, truly, but one that cannot be severed with the double-edged sword of scholastic casuistry. It is a true deo dignus vindice nodus, and can be untied only by the Gods. The meaning of this is plain, and every Kabalist will understand it.
Contra solem ne loquaris was not said by Pythagoras with regard to the visible Sun. It was the “Sun of Initiation” that was meant, in its triple form - two of which are the “Day-Sun” and the “Night-Sun.”
If behind the physical luminary there were no mystery that people sensed instinctively, why should every nation, from the primitive peoples down to the Parsis of today, have turned towards the Sun during prayers?
The Mystery of the Sun- (Page 213) The Solar Trinity is not Mazdean, but is universal, and is as old as man . All the temples in Antiquity were invariably made to face the Sun, their portals to open to the East. See the old temples of Memphis and Baalbec, the Pyramids of the Old and of the New (?) Worlds, the Round Towers of Ireland, and the Serapeum of Egypt. The Initiates alone could give a philosophical explanation of this, and a reason for it - its mysticism notwithstanding - were only the world ready to receive it, which, alas! it is not. The last of the Solar Priests in Europe was the Imperial Initiate, Julian, now called the Apostate. [ Julian died for the same crime as Socrates. Both divulged a portion of the solar mystery, the heliocentric system being only a part of what was given during Initiation - one consciously, the other unconsciously, the Greek Sage never having been initiated. It was not the real solar system that was preserved in such secrecy, but the mysteries connected with the Sun’s constitution. Socrates was sentenced to death by earthly and worldly judges: Julian died a violent death because the hitherto protecting hand was withdrawn from him, and, no longer shielded by it, he was simply left to his destiny or Karma. For the student of Occultism there is a suggestive difference between the two kinds of death. Another memorable instance of the unconscious divulging of secrets pertain to mysteries is that of the poet, P. Ovidius Naso, who, like Socrates, had not been initiated. In his case, the Emperor Augustus, who was an Initiate, mercifully changed the penalty of death into banishment to Tomos on the Euxine. This sudden change from unbounded royal favour to banishment has been a fruitful scheme of speculation to classical scholars not initiated into the Mysteries. They have quoted Ovid’s own lines to show that it was some great and heinous immorality of the Emperor of which Ovid had become unwillingly cognizant. The inexorable law of the death penalty always following upon the revelation of any portion of the Mysteries to the profane, was unknown to them. Instead of seeing the amiable and merciful act of the Emperor in its true light, they have made it an occasion for traducing his moral character. The poet’s own words can be no evidence, because as he was not an Initiate, it could not be explained to him in what his offence consisted. There have been comparatively modern instances of poets unconsciously revealing in their verses so much of the hidden knowledge as to make even Initiates suppose them to be fellow-Initiates, and come to talk to them on the subject. This only shows that the sensitive poetic temperament is sometimes so far transported beyond the bounds of ordinary sense as to get glimpses into what has been impressed on the Astral Light. In the Light of Asia there are two passages that might make an Initiate of the first degree think that Mr. Edwin Arnold had been initiated himself in the Himalyan ashrams, but this is not so.] He tried to benefit the world by revealing at least a portion of the great mystery of the τρεπλασος and - he died. “There are three in one,” he said of the Sun - the central Sun [ A proof that Julian was acquainted with the heliocentric system.] being a precaution of Nature: the first is the universal cause of all, Sovereign Good and perfection; the Second Power is paramount Intelligence, having dominion over all reasonable beings, νοεροις;the third is the visible Sun. The pure energy of solar intelligence proceeds from the luminous seat occupied by our Sun in the centre of heaven, that pure energy being the Logos of our system; the “Mysterious Word Spirit produces all through the Sun, and never operates through any other medium,” says Hermes Trismegistus. For it is in the Sun, more than in any other heavenly body that the [unknown] Power placed the (Page 214) seat of its habitation. Only neither Hermes Trismegistus nor Julian an initiated Occultist, nor any other, meant by this Unknown Cause Jehovah, or Jupiter. They referred to the cause that produced all the manifested “great Gods” or Demiurgi (the Hebrew God included) of our system. Nor was our visible, material Sun meant, for the latter was only the manifested symbol. Philolaus the Pythagorean, explains and completes Trismegistus by saying:
The Sun is a mirror of fire, the splendour of whose flames by their reflection in that mirror [the Sun] is poured upon us, and that splendour we call image.
It is evident that Philolaus referred to the central spiritual Sun, whose beams and effulgence are only mirrored by our central Star, the Sun. This is as clear to the Occultists as it was to the Pythagoreans. As for the profane of pagan antiquity, it was, of course, the physical Sun that was the “highest God” for them, as it seems - if Chevalier Drach’s view be accepted - to have now virtually become for the modern Roman Catholics. If words mean anything, the statements made by the Chevalier Drach that “this sun is, undeniably, the second hypostasis of the Deity,” imply what we say; as “this Sun” refers to the Kabalistic Sun, and “hypostasis” means substance or subsistence of the Godhead or Trinity - distinctly personal. As the author, being an ex-Rabbi, thoroughly versed in Hebrew, and in the mysteries of the Zohar, ought to know the value of words; and as, moreover, in writing this, he was bent upon reconciling “the seeming contradictions,” as he puts it, between Judaism and Christianity - the fact becomes quite evident.
But all this pertains to questions and problems which will be solved naturally and in the course of the development of the doctrine. The Roman Catholic Church stands accused, not of worshipping under other names the Divine Beings worshipped by all nations in Antiquity, but of declaring idolatrous, not only the Pagans ancient and modern, but every Christian nation that has freed itself from the Roman yoke. The accusation brought against herself by more than one man of Science, of worshipping the stars like true Sabaeans of old, stands to this day uncontradicted, yet no star-worshipper has ever addressed his adoration to the material stars and planets, as will be shown before the last page of this work is written; none the less it is true that those Philosophers alone who studied Astrology and Magic knew that the last word of those sciences was to be sought in, and expected from, the Occult forces emanating from those constellations.
Modern Kabalists in Science and Occult Astronomy
(Page 215) THERE is a physical, an astral, and a super-astral Universe in the three chief divisions of the Kabalah; as there are terrestrial, super-terrestrial, and spiritual Beings. The “Seven Planetary Spirits” may be ridiculed by Scientists to their hearts’ content, yet the need of intelligent ruling and guiding Forces in so much felt to this day that scientific men and specialists, who will not hear of Occultism or of ancient systems, find themselves obliged to generate in their inner consciousness some kind of semi-mystical system. Metcalf’s “sun-force” theory, and that of Zaliwsky, a learned Pole, which made Electricity the Universal Force and placed its storehouse in the Sun, [ La Gravitation par l’Electricité, p.7. quoted by De Mirville, iv. 156 ] were revivals of the Kabalistic teachings. Zaliwsky tried to prove that Electricity, producing “the most powerful, attractive, calorific, and luminous effects,” was present in the physical constitution of the Sun and explained its peculiarities. This is very near the Occult teaching. It is only by admitting the gaseous nature of the Sun-reflector, and the powerful Magnetism and Electricity of the solar attraction and repulsion, that one can explain (a) the evident absence of any waste of power and luminosity in the Sun - inexplicable by the ordinary laws of combustion; and (b) the behaviour of the planets, so often contradicting every accepted rule of weight and gravity. And Zaliwsky makes this “solar electricity” “differ from anything known on earth.”
Father Secchi may be suspected of having sought to introduce
Forces of quite a new order and quite foreign to gravitation, which he had discovered in Space. [ De Mirville. iv.157.] (Page 216)
in order to reconcile Astronomy with theological Astronomy. But Nagy, a member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, was no clerical, and yet he develops a theory on the necessity of intelligent Forces whose complacency “would lent itself to all the whims of the comets.” He suspects that:
Notwithstanding all the actual researches on the rapidity of light - that dazzling product of an unknown force . . . . which we see too frequently to understand – that light is motionless in reality.
[ C. E. Love, the well-known railway builder and engineer in France, tired of blind forces, made all the (then) “imponderable agents” - now called “forces” - subordinates of Electricity, and declares the latter to be
an Intelligence - albeit molecular in nature and material. [ Essai sur l'Identité des Agents Producteurs du Son, de la Lumiere, etc., p.15, ibid .]
In the author’s opinion these Forces are atomistic agents, endowed with intelligence, spontaneous will, and motion, [ Ibid.,p.218.] and he thus, like the Kabalists, makes the cousal Forces substantial, while the Forces that act on this plane are only the effects of the former, as with him matter is eternal, and the Gods also; [ Summarised from Ibid., p.213. De Mirville, iv.158.] so is the Soul likewise, though it has inherent in itself a still higher Soul [Spirit], preëxistent, endowed with memory, and superior to Electric Force; the latter is subservient to the higher Souls, those superior Souls forcing it to act according to the eternal laws. The concept is rather hazy, but is evidently on the Occult lines. Moreover, the system proposed is entirely pantheistic, and is worked out in a purely scientific volume. Monotheists and Roman Catholics fall foul of it, of course; but one who believes in the Planetary Spirits and who endows Nature with living Intelligences, must always expect this.
In this connection, however, it is curious that after the moderns have so laughed at the ignorance of the ancients,
Who, knowing only of seven planets [yet having an ogdoad which did not include the earth!], invented therefore seven Spirits to fit in with the number,
Babinet should have vindicated the “superstition” unconsciously to himself. In the Revue des Deux Mondes this eminent French Astronomer writes:
The Place of Neptune -
(Page 217) The ogdoad of the Ancients included the earth [which is an error] i.e., eight or seven according to whether or not the earth was comprised in the number. [ May. 1855. Ibid., p.139.]
De Mirville assures his readers that:
M. Babinet was telling me but a few days ago that we had in reality only eight big planets, including the earth, and so many small ones between Mars and Jupiter . . . .Herschell offering to call all those beyond the seven primary planets asteroids! [ La Terre et notre Systieme solaire. De Mirville, iv. 139.]
There is a problem to be solved in this connection. How do Astronomers know that Neptune is a planet, or even that it is a body belonging to our system? Being found on the very confines of our Planetary World, so called, the latter was arbitrarily expanded to receive it; but what really mathematical and infallible proof have Astronomers that it is (a) a planet, and (b) one of our planets? None at all! It is as such an immeasurable distance from us,
the apparent diameter of the sun being to Neptune but one-fortieth of the sun’s apparent diameter to us,
and it is so dim and hazy when seen through the best telescope that it looks like an astronomical romance to call it one of our planets. Neptune’s heat and light are reduced to 1/900th part of the heat and light received by the earth. His motion and that of his satellites have always looked suspicious. They do not agree - in appearance at least - with those of the other planets. His system is retrograde, etc. But even the latter abnormal fact resulted only in the creation of new hypotheses by our Astronomers, who forthwith suggested a probable overturn of Neptune, his collision with another body, etc. Was Adams’ and Leverrier’s discovery so welcomed because Neptune was as necessary as was Ether to throw a new glory upon astronomical prevision, upon the certitude of modern scientific data and principally upon the power of mathematical analysis? It would so appear. A new planet that widens our planetary domain by more than four hundred million leagues is worthy of annexation. Yet, as in the case of terrestrial annexation, scientific authority may be proved “right” only because it has “might.” Neptune’s motion happens to be dimly perceived: Eureka! it is a planet! A mere motion, however, proves very little. It is now an ascertained fact in Astronomy that there are no absolutely fixed stars in Nature, [ If, as Sir W. Herschel thought, the so-called fixed stars have resulted from, and owe their origin to nebular combustion, they cannot be fixed any more than is our sun, which was believed to be motionless and is now found to rotate around its axis every twenty-five days. As the fixed star nearest to the sun, however, is eight-thousand times farther away from him than is Neptune the illusions furnished by the telescopes must be also eight-thousand times as great. We will therefore leave the question at rest, repeating only what A. Maury said in his work (La Terre et l’Homme, published in 1858): “It is utterly impossible, so far, to decide anything concerning Neptune’s constitution, analogy alone authorising us to ascribe to him a rotary motion like that of other planets.” (De Mirville, iv.140).] even though such stars should (Page 218) continue to exist in astronomical parlance, while they have passed from the scientific imagination. Occultism, however, has a strange theory of its own with regard to Neptune.
Occultism says that if several hypotheses resting on mere assumption - which have been accepted only because they have been taught by eminent men of learning - are taken away from the Science of Modern Astronomy, to which they serve as props, then even the presumably universal law of gravitation will be found to be contrary to the most ordinary truths of mechanics. And really one can hardly blame Christians - foremost of all the Roman Catholics - however scientific some of these may themselves be, for refusing to quarrel with their Church for the sake of scientific beliefs. Nor can we even blame them for accepting in the secresy of their hearts - as some of them do - the theological “Virtues” and “Archons” of Darkness, instead of all the blind forces offered them by Science.
Never can there be intervention of any sort in the marshalling and the regular precession of the celestial bodies! The law of gravitation is the law of laws; who ever witnessed a stone rising in the air against gravitation? The permanence of the universal law is shown in the behaviour of the sidereal worlds and globes eternally faithful to their primitive orbits; never wandering beyond their respective paths. Nor is there any intervention needed, as it could only be disastrous. Whether the first sidereal incipient rotation took place owing to an intercosmic chance, or to the spontaneous development of latent primordial forces; or again, whether that impulse was given once for all by God or Gods - it does not make the slightest difference. At this stage of cosmic evolution no intervention, superior or inferior, is admissible. Were any to take place, the universal clock-work would stop, and Kosmos would fall into pieces.
Such are stray sentences, pearls of wisdom, fallen from time to time from scientific lips, and now chosen at random to illustrate a query. We lift our diminished heads and look heavenward. Such seems to be the fact: worlds, suns, and stars, the shining myriads of the heavenly hosts, remind the Poet of an infinite, shoreless ocean, whereon move swiftly numberless squadrons of ships, millions upon millions of cruisers, large and small, crossing each other, whirling and gyrating in every direction; and Science teaches us, that though they be without rudder or compass or any beacon to guide them, they are nevertheless secure from collision - almost secure, at any rate, save in chance accidents - as the whole celestial machine is built upon and guided by an immutable, albeit blind, law, and by constant and accelerating force or forces.
Self-Generation Ex-Niholo?- (Page 219) “Built upon” by whom? “By self-evolution,” is the answer. Moreover, as dynamics teach that
A body in motion tends to continue in the same state of relative rest or motion unless acted upon by some external force,
this force has to be regarded as self-generated - even if not eternal, since this would amount to the recognition of perpetual motion - and so well self-calculated and self-adjusted as to last from the beginning to the end of Kosmos. But “self-generation” has still to generate from something, generation ex-nihilo being as contrary to reason as it is to Science. Thus we are placed once more between the horns of a dilemma: are we to believe in perpetual motion or in self-generation ex-nihilo? And if in neither, who or what is that something, which first produced that force or those forces?
There are such things in mechanics as superior levers, which give the impulse and act upon secondary or inferior levers. The former, however, need an impulse and occasional renovation, otherwise they would themselves very soon stop and fall back into their original status. What is the external force which puts and retains them in motion? Another dilemma!
As to the law of cosmical non-intervention, it could be justified only in one case, namely, if the celestial mechanism were perfect; but it is not. The so-called unalterable motions of celestial bodies alter and change incessantly; they are very often disturbed, and the wheels of even the sidereal locomotive itself occasionally jump off their invisible rails, as may be easily proved. Otherwise why should Laplace speak of the probable occurrence at some future time of an out-and-out reform in the arrangements of the planets; [ Exposition du vrai System du Monde. p. 282.] or Lagrange maintain the gradual narrowing of the orbits; or our modern Astronomers, again, declare that the fuel in the sun is slowly disappearing? If the laws and forces which govern the behaviour of the celestial bodies are immutable, such modifications and wearing-out of substance or fuel, of force and fluids, would be impossible; yet they are not denied. Therefore (Page 220) one has to suppose that such modifications will have to rely upon the laws of forces, which will have to self-regenerate themselves once more on such occasions, thus producing an astral antinomy, and a kind of physical palinomy, since, as Laplace says, one would then see fluids disobeying themselves and reacting in a way contrary to all their attributes and properties.
Newton felt very uncomfortable about the moon. Her behaviour in progressively narrowing the circumference of her orbit around the earth made him nervous, lest it should end one day in our satellite falling upon the earth. The world, he confessed, needed repairing, and that very often. [ See the passage quoted by Herschel in Natural Philosophy, p. 165. De Mirville. iv.165.] In this he was corroborated by Herschel. [ l,oc. cit.] He speaks of real and quite considerable deviations, besides those which are only apparent, but gets some consolation from his conviction that somebody or something will probably see to things.
We may be answered that the personal beliefs of some pious Astronomers, however great they may be as scientific characters, are no proofs of the actual existence and presence in space of intelligent supramundane Beings, of either Gods or Angels. It is the behaviour of the stars and planets themselves that has to be analysed and inferences must be drawn therefrom. Renan asserts that nothing that we know of the sidereal bodies warrants the idea of the presence of any Intelligence, whether internal or external to them.
Let us see, says Reynaud, if this is a fact, or only one more empty scientific assumption.
The orbits traversed by the planets are far from being immutable. They are, on the contrary, subject to perpetual mutation in position, as in form. Elongations, contractions, and orbital widenings, oscillations from right to left, slackening and quickening of speed . . .. And all this on a plane which seems to vacillate. [ Terre et Ciel. p.28. Ibid. ]
As is very pertinently observed by des Mousseux:
Here is a path having little of the mathematical and mechanical precision claimed for it; for we know of no clock which, having gone slow for several minutes should catch up the right time of itself and without the turn of a key.
So much for blind law and force. As for the physical impossibility - a miracle indeed in the sight of Science - of a stone raised in the air against the law of gravitation, this is what Babinet - the deadliest enemy and opponent of the phenomena of levitation - (cited by Arago) says:
Are There Angels in Stars?-
(Page 221) Everyone knows the theory of bolides [meteors] and aerolithes . . . . In Connecticut an immense aerolith was seen [a mass of eighteen hundred feet in diameter], bombarding a whole American zone and returning to the spot [in mid-air] from which it had started. [ Oeuvres d'Arago.vol.i., 219: quoted by De Mirville, iii. 462.]
Thus we find in both of the cases above cited - that of self-correcting planets and meteors of gigantic size flying back into the air - a “blind force” regulating and resisting the natural tendencies of “blind matter,” and even occasionally repairing its mistakes and correcting its failures. This is far more miraculous and even “extravagant,” one would say, than any “Angel-guided” Element.
Bold is he who laughs at the idea of Von Haller, who declares that:
The stars are perhaps an abode of glorious Spirits; as here Vice reigns, there is Virtue master. [“Die Sterne sind vielleicht ein Sitz Verklarter Geister;
Wie hier das Laster herrscht, ist dort die Tugend Meister. ]
Eastern and Western Occultism
(Page 222) IN The Theosophist for March, 1886, [ Op.cit.,p.411] in an answer to the “Solar Sphinx,” a member of the London Lodge of the Theosophical Society wrote as follows:
We hold and believe that the revival of Occult Knowledge now in progress will some day demonstrate that the Western system represents ranges of perceptions which the Eastern - at least as expounded in the pages of The Theosophist—has yet to attain.[ Whenever Occult doctrines were expounded in the pages of The Theosophist, care was taken each time to declare a subject incomplete when the whole could not be given in its fullness, and no writer has ever tried to mislead the reader. As to the Western “ranges of perception” concerning doctrines really Occult, the Eastern Occultists have been made acquainted with them for some time past. Thus they are enabled to assert with confidence that the West may be in possession of Hermetic philosophy as a speculative system of dialectics, the latter being used in the West admirably well, but it lacks entirely the knowledge of Occultism. The genuine Eastern Occultist keeps silent and unknown, never publishes what he knows, and rarely even speaks of it, as he knows too well the penalty of indiscretion.]
The writer is not the only person labouring under this erroneous impression. Greater Kabalists than he had said the same in the United States. This only proves that the knowledge possessed by Western Occultists of the true Philosophy, and the “ranges of perceptions” and thought of the Eastern doctrines, is very superficial. This assertion will be easily demonstrated by giving a few instances, instituting comparisons between the two interpretations of one and the same doctrine---the Hermetic Universal Doctrine. It is the more needed since, were we to neglect bringing forward such comparisons, our work would be left incomplete.
Primordial Matter- (Page 223) We may take the late Éliphas Lévi, rightly referred to by another Western Mystic, Mr. Kenneth Mackenzie, as “one of the greatest representatives of modern Occult Philosophy,” [ See The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia,art. “Sepher Jetzirah.”] as presumably the best and most learned expounder of the Chaldaean Kabalah, and compare his teaching with that of Eastern Occultists. In his unpublished manuscripts and letters, lent to us by a Theosophist, who was for fifteen years his pupil, we had hoped to find that which he was unwilling to publish. What we do find, however, disappoints us greatly. We will take these teachings, then, as containing the essence of Western or Kabalistic Occultism, analyzing and comparing them with the Eastern interpretation as we go on.
Éliphas Lévi teaches correctly, though in language rather too rhapsodically rhetorical to be sufficiently clear to the beginner, that
Eternal life is Motion equilibrated by the alternate manifestations of force.
But why does he not add that this perpetual motion is independent of the manifested Forces at work? He says:
Chaos is the Tohu-vah-bohu of perpetual motion and the sum total of primordial matter;
and he fails to add that Matter is “primordial” only at the beginning of every new reconstruction of the Universe: matter in abscondito, as it is called by the Alchemists, is eternal, indestructible, without beginning or end. It is regarded by Eastern Occultists as the eternal Root of all, the Mûlaprakriti of the Vedântin, and the Svabhâvat of the Buddhist; the Divine Essence, in short, or Substance; the radiations from This are periodically aggregated into graduated forms, from pure Spirit to gross Matter; the Root, or Space, is in its abstract presence the Deity Itself, the Ineffable and Unknown One Cause.
Ain-Suph with him also is the Boundless, the infinite and One Unity, secondless and causeless as Parabrahman. Ain-Suph is the indivisible point, and therefore, as “being everywhere and nowhere,” is the absolute All. It is also “Darkness” because it is absolute Light, and the Root of the seven fundamental Cosmic Principles. Yet Éliphas Lévi, by simply stating that “Darkness was upon the face of the Earth,” fails to show (a) that “Darkness” in this sense is Deity Itself, and he is (Page 224) therefore withholding the only philosophical solution of this problem for the human mind; and (b) he allows the unwary student to believe that by “Earth” our own little globe—an atom in the Universe—is meant. In short, this teaching does not embrace the Occult Cosmogony, but deals simply with Occult Geology and the formation of our cosmic speck. This is further shown by his making a resume of the Sephirothal Tree in this wise:
God is harmony, the astronomy of Powers and Unity outside of the World.
This seems to suggest (a) that he teaches the existence of an extra-cosmic God, thus limiting and conditioning both the Kosmos and the divine Infinity and Omnipresence which cannot be extraneous to or outside of one single atom; and (b) that by skipping the whole of the pre-cosmic period—the manifested Kosmos here being meant —the very root of Occult teaching he explains only the Kabalistic meaning of the dead-letter of the Bible and Genesis, leaving its spirit and essence untouched. Surely the “ranges of perception” of the Western mind will not be greatly enlarged by such a limited teaching.
Having said a few words on Tohu-vah-bohu—the meaning of which Wordsworth rendered graphically as “higgledy-piggledy”—and having explained that this term denoted Cosmos, he teaches that:
Above the dark abyss [ Chaos] were the Waters . . . . the earth [la terre!] was Tohu-vah-bohu, i.e., in confusion, and darkness covered the face of the Deep, and vehement Breath moved on the Waters when the Spirit exclaimed [?], “Let there be light,” and there was light. Thus the earth [our globe, of course] was in a state of cataclysm; thick vapours veiled the immensity of the sky, the earth was covered with waters and a violent wind was agitating this dark ocean, when at a given moment the equilibrium revealed itself and light reappeared; the letters that compose the Hebrew word “Bereshith” (the first word of Genesis) are “Beth,” the binary, the verb manifested by the act, a feminine letter; then “Resch,” the Verbum and Life, number 20, the disc multiplied by 2; and “Aleph,” the spiritual principle, the Unit, a masculine letter.
Place these letters in a triangle and you have the absolute Unity, that without being included into numbers creates the number, the first manifestation, which is 2, and these two united by harmony resulting from the analogy of contraries [opposites], make I, only. This is why God is called Elohim (plural).
All this is very ingenious, but is very puzzling, besides being incorrect. For owing to the first sentence, “Above the dark abyss were the Waters,” the French Kabalist leads the student away from the right track. This an Eastern Chela will see at a glance, and even one of the profane may see it. For if the Tohu-vah-bohu is “under” and the Waters are “above,” then these two are quite distinct from each other, and this is not the case.
The Great Deep -(Page 225) This statement is a very important one, inasmuch as it entirely changes the spirit and nature of Cosmogony, and brings it down to a level with exoteric Genesis—gerhaps it was so stated with an eye to this result. The Tohu-vah-bohu is the “Great Deep,” and is identical with “the Waters of Chaos,” or the primordial Darkness. By stating the fact otherwise it makes both “the Great Deep” and the “Waters”—which cannot be separated except in the phenomenal world --- limited as to space and conditioned as to their nature. Thus Éliphas in his desire to conceal the last word of Esoteric Philosophy, fails—whether intentionally or otherwise does not matter—to point out the fundamental principle of the one true Occult Philosophy, namely, the unity and absolute homogeneity of the One Eternal Divine Element, and he makes of the Deity a male God. Then he says:
Above the Waters was the powerful Breath of the Elohim [the creative Dhyan Chohans]. Above the Breath appeared the Light, and above the Light the Word . . . that created it.
Now the fact is quite the reverse of this: it is the Primeval Light that creates the Word or Logos, Who in His turn creates physical light. To prove and illustrate what he says he gives the following figure:
Now any Eastern Occultist upon seeing this would not hesitate to pronounce it a “left hand” magic figure. It is entirely reversed, and it represents the third stage of religious thought, that current in Dvapara Yuga, when the one principle is already separated into male and female, and humanity is approaching the fall into materiality (Page 226) which brings the Kali Yuga. A student of Eastern Occultism would draw it thus:
For the Secret Doctrine teaches us that the reconstruction of the Universe takes place in this wise: At the periods of new generation, perpetual Motion becomes Breath; from the Breath comes forth primordial Light, through whose radiance manifest the Eternal Thought concealed in darkness, and this becomes the Word (Mantra). [ In the exoteric sense, the Mantra (or that psychic faculty or power that conveys perception or thought) is the older portion of the Vedas, the second part of which is composed of the Brâhmanas. In Esoteric phraseology Mantra is the Word made flesh, or rendered objective, through divine magic.] It is That (the Mantra or Word) from which all This ( the Universe) sprang into being.
Further on Éliphas Lévi says:
This [ the concealed Deity ] radiated a ray into the Eternal Essence [ Waters of Space] and, fructifying thereby the primordial germ, the Essence expanded. [The secret meaning of the word “Brahmâ” is “expansion,” “increase,” or “growth.”] giving birth to the Heavenly Man from whose mind were born all forms.
The Kabalah states very nearly the same. To learn what it really teaches one has to reverse the order in which Éliphas Lévi gives it, replacing the word “above by that of "in" as there cannot surely be any "above" or "under"” in the Absolute. This is what he says:
Above the waters the powerful breath of the Elohim; above the Breath the Light; above Light the Word, or the Speech that created it. We see here the spheres of evolution: the soul [?] driven from the dark centre (Darkness) toward the luminous circumference. At the bottom of the lowest circle is the Tohu-vah-bohu, or the chaos which precedes all manifestation [ Naissances—generation ]; then the region of Water; then Breath; then Light; and, lastly, the Word.
The Chaos of Genesis - (Page 227) The construction of the above sentences shows that the learned Abbé had a decided tendency to anthropomorphize creation, even though the latter has to be shaped out of preëxisting material, as the Zohar shows plainly enough.
This is how the “great” Western Kabalist gets out of the difficulty: he keeps silent on the first stage of evolution and imagines a second Chaos. Thus he says:
The Tohu-vah-bohu is the Latin Limbus, or twilight of the morning and evening of life,[ Why not give at once its theological meaning, as we find it in Webster? With the Roman Catholics it means simply “purgatory,” the borderland between heaven and hell (Limbus patrum and Limbus infantum), the one for all men, whether good, bad or indifferent: the other for the souls of unbaptized children! With the ancients it meant simply that which in Esoteric Buddhism is called the Kâma Loka, between Devachan and Avitchi.] It is in perpetual motion, [ As Chaos, the eternal Element, not as the Kâma Loka surely?] it decomposes continually [ A proof that by this word Éliphas Lévi means the lowest region of the terrestrial Akasha.] and the work of putrefaction accelerates, because the world is advancing towards regeneration [ Evidently he is concerned only wiht our periodical world, or the terrestrial globe. ] .The Tohu-vah-bohu of the Hebrews is not exactly the confusion of things called Chaos by the Greeks, and which is found described in the commencement of the Metamorphosis of Ovid; it is something greater and more profound; it is the foundation of religion, it is the philosophical affirmation of the immateriality of God.
Rather an affirmation of the materiality of a personal God. If a man has to seek his Deity in the Hades of the ancients—for the Tohu-vah bohu, or the Limbus of the Greeks, is the Hall of Hades —then one can wonder no longer at the accusations brought forward by the Church against the “witches” and sorcerers versed in Western Kabalism, that they adored the goat Mendes, or the devil personified by certain spooks and Elementals. But in face of the task Éliphas Lévi had set before himself—that of reconciling Jewish Magic with Roman ecclesiasticism—he could say nothing else.
Then he explains the first sentence in Genesis:
Let us put on one side the vulgar translation of the sacred texts and see what is hidden in the first chapter of Genesis.
He then gives the Hebrew text quite correctly, but transliterates it:
Bereschith Bara Eloim uth aschamam ouatti aares ouares ayete Tohu-vah-bohu. . . . Ouimas Eloim rai avur ouiai aour.
And he then explains:
The first word, “Bereschith,” signifies “genesis,” a word equivalent to “nature.” (Page 228) “The act of generation or production,” we maintain; not “nature.” He then continues:
The phase, then, is incorrectly translated in the Bible. It is not “in the beginning,” for it should be at the stage of the generating force.[ In the “reawakening” of the Forces would be more correct.] which would thus exclude every idea of the ex-nihilo . . . .as nothing cannot produce something. The word “Eloim” or “Elohim” signifies the generating Powers, and such is the Occult sense of the first verse . . . . “Bereschith” (“nature” or “genesis’), “Bara” (“created’) “Eloim” (“the forces”) “Athat-ashamaim” (“heavens”) “ouath” and “oaris” (“the earth”); that is to say, “The generative potencies created indefinitely (eternally) [ An action which is incessant in eternity cannot be called “creation;” it is evolution, and the eternally or ever—becoming of the Greek Philosopher and the Hindu Vedantin: it is the Sat and the one Beingness of Parmenides, or the Being identical with Thought. Now how can the Potencies be said to “create movement, once it is seen movement never had any beginning, but existed in the Eternity? Why not say that the reawakened Potencies transferred motion from the eternal to the temporal plane of being? Surely this is not Creation.] those forces that are the equilibrated opposites that we call heaven and earth, meaning the space and the bodies, the volatile and the fixed, the movement and the weight.
Now this, if it be correct, is too vague to be understood by any one ignorant of the Kabalistic teaching. Not only are his explanations unsatisfactory and misleading—in his published works they are still worse—but his Hebrew transliteration is entirely wrong; it precludes the student, who would compare it for himself with the equivalent symbols and numerals of the words and letters of the Hebrew alphabet, from finding anything of that he might have found were the words correctly spelt in the French transliteration.
Compared even with exoteric Hindu Cosmogony, the philosophy which Éliphas Lévi gives out as Kabalistic is simply mystical Roman Catholicism adapted to the Christian Kabalah. His Histoire de la Magie shows it plainly, and reveals also his object, which he does not even care to conceal. For, while stating with his Church, that
The Christian religion has imposed silence on the lying oracles of the Gentiles and put an end to the prestige of the false gods, [ Histoire de la Magie. Int., p.1.]
he promises to prove in his work that the real Sanctum Regnum, the great Magic Art, is in that Star of Bethlehem which led the three Magi to adore the Savior of this World. He says:
We will prove that the study of the sacred Pentagram had to lead all the Magi to know the new name which should be raised above all names, and before which every being capable of worship has to bend his knees. [ Histoire de la Magic. Int., p.2.]
The Bible of Humanity - (Page 229) This shows that Lévi’s Kabalah is mystic Christianity, and not Occultism; for Occultism is universal and knows no difference between the “Saviours” (or great Avatâras) of the several old nations. Éliphas Lévi was not an exception in preaching Christianity under a disguise of Kabalism. He was undeniably “the greatest representative of modern Occult Philosophy,” as it is studied in Roman Catholic countries generally, where it is fitted to the preconceptions of Christian students. But he never taught the real universal Kabalah, and least of all did he teach Eastern Occultism. Let the student compare the Eastern and Western teaching, and see whether the philosophy of the Upanishads” has yet to attain the ranges of perception” of this Western system. Everyone has the right to defend the system he prefers, but in doing this, there is no need to throw slurs upon the system of one’s brother.
In view of the great resemblance between many of the fundamental “truths” of Christianity and the “myths” of Brâhmanism, there have been serious attempts made lately to prove that the Bhagavad Gita and most of the Brâhamanas and the Purânas are of a far later date than the Mosaic Books and even than the Gospels. But were it possible that an enforced success should be obtained in this direction, such argument cannot achieve its object, since the Rig Veda remains. Brought down to the most modern limits of the age assigned to it, its date cannot be made to overlap that of the Pentateuch, which is admittedly later.
The Orientalists know well that they cannot make away with the landmarks, followed by all subsequent religions, set up in that “Bible of Humanity” called the Rig Veda. It is there that at the very dawn of intellectual humanity were laid the foundation-stones of all the faiths and creeds, of every fane and church built from first to last; and they are still there. Universal “myths,” personifications of Powers divine and cosmic, primary and secondary, and historical personages of all the now-existing as well as of extinct religions are to be found in the seven chief Deities and their 330,000,000 correlations of the Rig Veda, and those Seven, with the odd millions, are the Rays of the one boundless Unity.
But to THIS can never be offered profane worship. It can only be the “object of the most abstract meditation, which Hindus practice in order to obtain absorption in it.” At the beginning of every “dawn” of “Creation,” eternal Light—which is darkness—assumes the aspect of so-called Chaos” chaos to the human intellect; the eternal Root to the superhuman or spiritual sense.
(Page 230) “Osiris is a black God.” These were the words pronounced at “low breath” at Initiation in Egypt, because Osiris Noumenon is darkness to the mortal. In this Chaos are formed the “Waters,” Mother Isis, Aditi, etc. They are the “Waters of Life,” in which primordial germs are created—or rather reawakened—by the primordial Light. It is Purushottama, or the Divine Spirit, which in its capacity of Nârâyna, the Mover on the Waters of Space, fructifies and infuses the Breath of life into that germ which becomes the “Golden Mundane Egg,” in which the male Brahmâ is created; [ The Vaishnavas, who regard Vishnu as the Supreme God and the fashioner of the Universe, claim that Brahmâ sprang from the navel of Vishnu, the “imperishable,” or rather from the lotus that grew from it. But the word “navel” here means the Central point, the mathematical symbol of infinitude, or Parabrahman, the One and the Secondless.] and from this the first Prajapâti, the Lord of Beings, emerges, and becomes the progenitor of mankind. And though it is not he, but the Absolute, that is said to contain the Universe in Itself, yet it is the duty of the male Brahmâ to manifest it in a visible form. Hence he has to be connected with the procreation of species, and assumes, like Jehovah and other male Gods in subsequent anthropomorphism, a phallic symbol. At best every such male God, the “Father” of all, becomes the “Archetypal Man.” Between him and the Infinite Deity stretches an abyss. In the theistic religions of personal Gods the latter are degraded from abstract Forces into physical potencies. The Water of Life—the “Deep” of Mother Nature—is viewed in its terrestrial aspect in anthropomorphic religions. Behold, how holy it has become by theological magic! It is held sacred and is deified now as of old in almost every religion. But if Christians use it as a means of spiritual purification in baptism and prayer; if Hindus pay reverence to their sacred streams, tanks and rivers; if Pârsi, Mahommedan and Christian alike believe in its efficacy, surely that element must have some great and Occult significance. In Occultism it stands for the Fifth Principle of Kosmos, in the lower septenary: for the whole visible Universe was built by Water, say the Kabalists who know the difference between the two waters —the “Waters of Life” and those of Salvation—so confused together in dogmatic religions. The “King-Preacher” says of himself:
I, the Preacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem, and I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven. [ Ecclesiastes. i. 12. 13.]
Speaking of the great work and glory of the Elohim [ It is probably needless to say here what everyone knows. The translation of the Protestant Bible is not a word for word rendering of the earlier Greek and Latin Bibles: the sense is very often disfigured, and “God” is put where “Jahve” and “Elohim” stand.]—unified into the “Lord God” in the English Bible, whose garment, he tells us, is light and heaven the curtain—he refers to the builder
Chaos is Theos or Kosmos -
(Page 231) Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters,[ Psalms. civ. 2.3.]
that is, the divine Host of the Sephiroth, who have constructed the Universe out of the Deep, the Waters of Chaos. Moses and Thales were right in saying that only earth and water can bring forth a living Soul, water being on this plane the principle of all things. Moses was an Initiate, Thales a Philosopher - i.e., a Scientist, for the words were synonymous in his day.
The secret meaning of this is that water and earth stand in the Mosaic Books for the prima materia and the creative (feminine) Principle on our plane. In Egypt Osiris was Fire, and Isis was the Earth or its synonym Water; the two opposing elements—just because of their opposite properties—being necessary to each other for a common object; that of procreation. The earth needs solar heat and rain to make her throw out her germs. But these procreative properties of Fire and Water, or Spirit and Matter, are symbols but of physical generation. While the Jewish Kabalists symbolized these elements only in their application to manifested things, and reverenced them as the emblems for the production of terrestrial life, the Eastern Philosophy noticed them only as an illusive emanation from their spiritual prototypes, and no unclean or unholy thought marred its Esoteric religious symbology.
Chaos, as shown elsewhere, is Theos, which becomes Kosmos: it is Space, the container of everything in the Universe. As Occult Teachings assert, it is called by the Chaldaeans, Egyptians, and every other nation Tohu-vah-bohu, or Chaos, Confusion, because Space is the great storehouse of Creation, whence proceed not forms alone, but also ideas, which could receive their expression only through the Logos, the Word, Verbum, or Sound.
The numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 are the successive emanations from Mother [Space] as she forms running downward her garment, spreading it upon the seven steps of Creation.[ To avoid misunderstanding of the word “creation” so often used by us, the remarks of the author of Through the Gates of Gold may be quoted owing to their clearness and simplicity. “The words ‘to create’ are often understood by the ordinary mind to convey the idea of evolving something out of nothing. This is clearly not its meaning. We are mentally obliged to provide our Creator with chaos from which to produce the worlds. The tiller of the soil, who is the typical producer of social life, must have his material: his earth, his sky, rain and sun, and the seeds to place within the earth. Out of nothing he can produce nothing. Out of a void nature cannot arise: there is that material beyond, behind, or within, from which she is shaped by our desire for a Universe.” (P.72) ] The roller returns upon itself, as one end joins the other (Page 232) in infinitude, and the numbers 4, 3, and 2 are displayed, as it is the only side of the veil that we can perceive, the first number being lost in its inaccessible solitude.
. . . .Father, which is Boundless Time, generates Mother, which is infinite Space, in Eternity; and Mother generates Father in Manvantaras, which are divisions of durations, that Day when that world becomes one ocean. Then the Mother becomes Nârâ [Waters —the Great Deep] for Nara [ the Supreme Spirit ] to rest—or move—upon, when, it is said, that 1, 2, 3, 4 descend and abide in the world of the unseen, while the 4, 3, 2, become the limits in the visible world to deal with the manifestations of Father [Time]. [ Commentary on Stanza ix. on Cycles.]
This relates to the Mahâyugas which in figures become 432, and with the addition of noughts, 4,320.000.
Now it is surpassingly strange, if it be a mere coincidence, that the numerical value of Tohu-vah-bohu, or “Chaos” in the Bible—which Chaos, of course, is the “Mother” Deep, or the Waters of Space—should yield the same figures. For this is what is found in a Kabalist manuscript:
It is said of the Heavens and the Earth in the second verse of Genesis that they were “Chaos and Confusion”—that is, they were “Tohu-vah-bohu;” “and darkness was upon the face of the deep.” i.e., “the perfect material out of which construction was to be made lacked organization.” The order of the digits of these words as they stand—i.e., [ Or, read from right to left, the letters and their corresponding numerals stand thus: “t,” 4: “h.” 5: “bh,” 2: “v,” 6: “v” 6: “h,” 5: “ ”v” or “w,” 6: which yields “thuvbhu,” 4566256, or “Tohu-vah-bohu.”] the letters rendered by their numerical value—is 6,526,654 and 2,386. By art speech these are key-working numbers loosely shuffled together, the germs and keys of construction, but to be recognized, one by one, as used and required. They follow symmetrically in the work as immediately fol
lowing the first sentence of grand enunciation: “In Rash developed itself Gods, the heavens and the earth.”
Multiply the numbers of the letters of “Tohu-vah-bohu” together continuously from right to left, placing the consecutive single products as we go, and we will have the following series of values, viz., (a) 30, 60, 360, 2,160, 10,800, 43,200, or as by the characterizing digits; 3, 6, 36, 216, 108, and 432; (b) 20, 120, 720 , 1,440, 7,200, or 2, 12, 72, 144, 72, 432, the series closing in 432, one of the most famous numbers of antiquity, and which, though obscured, crops out in the chronology up to the Flood. [ Mr. Ralston Skinner’s MSS.]
One Hundred and Eight - ( Page 233) This shows that the Hebrew usage of play upon the numbers must have come to the Jews from India. As we have seen, the final series yields, besides many another combination, the figures 108 and 1008—the number of the names of Vishnu, whence the 108 grains of the Yogi’s rosary—and close with 432, the truly “famous” number in Indian and Chaldaean antiquity, appearing in the cycle of 4,320,000 years in the former, and in the 432,000 years, the duration of the Chaldaean divine dynasties.
The Idols and the Teraphim
(Page 234) THE meaning of the “fairy-tale” told by the Chaldaean Qû-Tâmy is easily understood. His modus operandi with the “idol of the moon” was that of all the Semites , before Terah, Abraham’s father made images—the Teraphim, called after him—or the “chosen people” of Israel ceased divining by them. These teraphim were just as much “idols” as in any pagan image or statue. [ That the teraphim was a statue, and no small article either, is shown in Samuel xix., where Michal takes a teraphim (“image,” as it is translated) and puts it in bed to represent David, her husband, who ran away from Saul (see verse 13, et seq.) It was thus of the size and shape of a human figure—a statue or real idol.] The injunction “Thou shalt not bow to a graven image,” or teraphim, must have either come at a later date, or have been disregarded, since the bowing-down to and the divining by the teraphim seems to have been so orthodox and general that the “Lord” actually threatens the Israelites, through Hosea, to deprive them of their teraphim.
For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, . . . without a sacrifice, and without an image.
Matzebah, or statue, or pillar, is explained in the Bible to mean “without an ephod and without teraphim.” [ Op.cit., iii..4.]
Father Kircher supports very strongly the idea that the statue of the Egyptian Serapis was identical in every way with those of the seraphim, or teraphim, in the temple of Solomon. Says Louis de Dieu:
They were, perhaps, images of angels, or statues dedicated to the angels, the presence of one of these spirits being thus attracted into a teraphim and answering the inquirers [consultants]; and even in this hypothesis the word “teraphim” would become the equivalent of “seraphim” by changing the “t” into “s” in the manner of the Syrians. [ Louis de Dieu, Genesis, XXI. 19. See de Mirville, iii.257.]
Divining By Teraphim - (Page 235) What says the Septuagint? The teraphim are translated successively by ειδωλα—forms in someone’s likeness; eidolon, an “astral body;” γλυπτα —the sculptured; κενοταφια—sculptures in the sense of containing something hidden, or receptacles; φηλους.—manifestations;αληφειας. truths or realities;μσρφωματα. or φωτισμοις.—luminous, shining likenesses. The latter expression shows plainly what the teraphim were. The Vulgate translates the term by “annuntientes,” the “messengers who announce,” and it thus becomes certain that the teraphim were the oracles. They were the animated statues, the Gods who revealed themselves to the masses through the Initiated Priests and Adepts in the Egyptian, Chaldaean, Greek, and other temples.
As to the way of divining, or learning one’s fate, and of being instructed by the teraphim, [ “The teraphim of Abram’s father, Terah, the ‘maker of images,’ were the Kabeiri Gods, and we see them worshipped by Micah, by the Danites, and others. (Judges, xvii., xviii, etc) Teraphim were identical with seraphim, and these were serpent images, the origin of which is in the Sanskrit ‘Sarpa’ (the ‘serpent’) a symbol sacred to all the deities as a symbol of immortality. Kiyun, or the God Kivan, worshipped by the Hebrews in the wilderness, is Shiva, the Hindu Saturn. (The Zendic ‘h’ is ‘s’ in India; thus, ‘Hapta’ is ‘Sapta:’ ‘Hindu’ is ‘Sindhaya.’ (A. Wilder). “The “s” continually softens to “h” from Greece to Calcutta, from the Caucasus to Egypt,’ says Dunlap. Therefore the letters ‘k’ ‘h,’ and ‘s’ are interchangeable. The Greek story shows that Dardanus, the Arcadian, having received them as a dowry, carried them to Samothrace, and thence to Troy: and they were worshipped long before the days of glory of Tyre or Sidon, though the former had been built 2760 B.C. From where did Dardanus derive them?” Isis Unveiled. 1. 570.] it is explained quite plainly by Maimonides and Seldenus. The former says:
The worshippers of the teraphim claimed that the light of the principal stars [planets], penetrating into and filling the carved statue through and through, the angelic virtue [of the regents, or animating principle in the planets] conversed with them, teaching them many most useful arts and sciences. [ Maimon. More Nevochim, III. xxx.]
In his turn Seldenus explains the same, adding that the teraphim [ Those dedicated to the sun were made in gold, and those to the moon in silver.] were built and fashioned in accordance with the position of their respective planets, each of the teraphim being consecrated to a special “star-angel,” those that the Greeks called stoichae, as also according to figures located in the sky and called the “tutelary Gods”:
Those who traced out the στοιχεια. were called στοιχειωματικοι.[ or the diviners by the planets] and the στοιχεια.[ De Diis Syriis, Teraph, 11. Syat. p.31.]
Ammianus Marcellinus states that the ancient divinations were always (Page 236) accomplished with the help of the “spirits” of the elements (spiritus elementorum), or as they were called in Greek ηνενματα των οτοιχειων. Now the latter are not the “spirits” of the stars (planets), nor are they divine Beings; they are simply the creatures inhabiting their respective elements, called by the Kabalists elementary spirits, and by the Theosophists elementals. [ Those that the Kabalists call elementary spirits are sylphs, gnomes, undines and salamanders, nature-spirits, in short. The spirits of the angels formed a distinct class.] Father Kircher, the Jesuit, tells the reader:
Every god had such instruments of divination to speak through. Each had his speciality.
Serapis gave instruction on agriculture; Anubis taught sciences; Horus advised upon psychic and spiritual matters; Isis was consulted on the rising of the Nile, and so on. [ OEdipus. ii. 444 ].
This historical fact, furnished by one of the ablest and most erudite among the Jesuits, is unfortunate for the prestige of the “Lord God of Israel” with regard to his claims to priority and to his being the one living God. Jehovah, on the admission of the Old Testament itself, conversed with his elect in no other way, and this places him on a par with every other Pagan God, even of the inferior classes. In Judges, xvii., we read of Micah having an ephod and a teraphim fabricated, and consecrating them to Jehovah (see the Septuagint and the Vulgate); these objects were made by a founder from the two hundred shekels of silver given to him by his mother. True, King James’ “Holy Bible” explains this little bit of idolatry by saying:
In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
Yet the act must have been orthodox, since Micah, after hiring a priest, a diviner, for his ephod and teraphim, declares: “Now know I that the Lord will do me good.” And if Micah’s act—who
Had an house of Gods, and made an ephod and teraphim and consecrated one of his sons
to their service, as also to that of the “graven image” dedicated “unto the Lord” by his mother—now seems prejudicial, it was not so in those days of one religion and one lip. How can the Latin Church blame the act, since Kircher, one of her best writers, calls the teraphim “the holy instruments of primitive revelations;” since Genesis shows us Rebecca going “ to enquire of the Lord,” [ Op. cit., xxv.22 et seq.] and the Lord answering her (certainly through his teraphim), and delivering to her several prophecies?
Jehovah and Teraphim - (Page 237) And if this be not sufficient, there is Saul, who deplores the silence of the ephod, [ The ephod was a linen garment worn by the high priest, but as the thummim was attached to it the entire paraphernalia of divination was often comprised in that single word, ephod. See I Sam., xxviii. 6, and xxx. 7. 8.] and David who consults the thummim, and receives oral advice from the Lord as to the best way of killing his enemies.
The thumim and urim, however—the object in our days of so much conjecture and speculation —was not an invention of the Jews, nor had it originated with them, despite the minute instruction given about it by Jehovah to Moses. For the priest-hierophant of the Egyptian temples wore a breastplate of precious stones, in every way similar to that of the high priest of the Israelites.
The high-priests of Egypt wore suspended on their necks an image of saphire, called Truth, the manifestation of truth becoming evident in it.
Seldenus is not the only Christian writer who assimilates the Jewish to the Pagan teraphim, and expressed a conviction that the former had borrowed them from the Egyptians. Moreover, we are told by Döllinger, a preeminently Roman Catholic writer:
The teraphim were used and remained in many Jewish families to the days of Josiah. [Paganism and Judaism, iv. I 97].
As to the personal opinion of Döllinger, a papist, and of Seldenus, a Protestant—both of whom trace Jehovah in the teraphim of the Jews and “evil spirits” in those of the Pagans—it is the usual one-sided judgment of odium theologicum and sectarianism. Seldenus is right, however, in arguing that in the days of old, all such modes of communication had been primarily established for purposes of divine and angelic communications only. But
The holy Spirit [spirits, rather] spake [not] to the children of Israel [alone] by urim and thummim, while the tabernacle remained,
as Dr. A. Cruden would have people believe. Nor had the Jews alone need of a “tabernacle” for such a kind of theophanic, or divine communication; for no Bath-Kol (or “Daughter of the divine Voice”), called thummim, could be heard whether by Jew, Pagan, or Christian, were there not a fit tabernacle for it. The “tabernacle” was simply the archaic telephone of those days of Magic when Occult powers were acquired by Initiation, just as they are now. The nineteenth century (Page 238) has replaced with an electric telephone the “tabernacle” of specified metals, wood, and special arrangements, and has natural mediums instead of high priests and hierophants. Why should people wonder, then, that instead of reaching Planetary Spirits and Gods, believers should now communicate with no greater beings than elementals and animated shells - the demons of Porphyry? Who these were, he tells us candidly in his work On the Good and Bad Demons:
They whose ambition is to be taken for Gods, and whose leader demands to be recognized as the Supreme God.
Mmost decidedly—and it is not the Theosophists who will ever deny the fact—there are good as well as bad spirits, beneficent and malevolent “Gods” in all ages. The whole trouble was, and still is, to know which is which. And this, we maintain, the Christian Church knows no more than her profane flock. If anything proves this, it is, most decidedly, the numberless theological blunders made in this direction. It is idle to call the Gods of the heathen “devils,” and then to copy their symbols in such a servile manner, enforcing the distinction between the good and the bad with no weightier proof than that they are respectively Christian and Pagan. The planets—the elements of the Zodiac—have not figured only at Heliopolis as the twelve stones called the “mysteries of the elements” (elementorum arcana). On the authority of many an orthodox Christian writer they were found also in Solomon’s temple, and may be seen to this day in several old Italian churches, and even in Notre Dame of Paris.
One would really say that the warning in Clement’s Stromateis has been given in vain, though he is supposed to quote words pronounced by St. Peter. He says:
Do not adore God as the Jews do, who think they are the only ones to know Deity and fail to perceive that, instead of God, they are worshipping angels, the lunar months, and the moon. [Op cit.,I. vi. 5.]
Who after reading the above can fail to feel surprise that, notwithstanding such understanding of the Jewish mistake, the Christians are still worshipping the Jewish Jehovah, the Spirit who spoke through his teraphim! That this is so, and that Jehovah was simply the “tutelary genius,” or spirit, of the people of Israel - only one of the pneuma ton stoicheion (or “great spirits of the elements”), not even a high “Planetary”—is demonstrated on the authority of St. Paul and of Clemens Alexandrinus, if the words they use have any meaning.
Idol of the Moon - (Page 239) With the latter, the word στοιχεια signifies not only elements, but also
Generative cosmological principles, and notably the signs [or constellations] of the Zodiac, of the months, days, the sun and the moon. [Discourse to the Gentiles, p. I46.]
The expression is used by Aristotle in the same sense. He says, των αστρων στοιχεια.[De Gener., III. iv.] while Diogenes Laertius calls δωδεκα στοιχεια. the twelve signs of the Zodiac. [See Cosmos, by Ménage, I., vi., p 101.] Now having the positive evidence of Ammianus Marcellinus to the effect that
Ancient divination was always accompanied with the help of the spirits of the elements,
or the same πνεαματα των στοιχειων., and seeing in the Bible numerous passages that (a) the Israelites, including Saul and David, resorted to the same divination, and used the same means; and (b) that it was their “Lord”—namely, Jehovah—who answered them, what else can we believe Jehovah to be than a “spiritus elementorum”?
Hence one sees no great difference between the “idol of the moon”—the Chaldaean teraphim through which spoke Saturn—and the idol or urim and thummim, the organ of Jehovah. Occult rites, scientific at the beginning—and forming the most solemn and sacred of sciences—have fallen through the degeneration of mankind into Sorcery, now called “superstition.” As Diogenes explains in his History:
The Kaldhi, having made long observations on the planets and knowing better than anyone else the meaning of their motions and their influences, predict to people their futurity. They regard their doctrine of the five great orbs—which they call interpreters, and we, planets—as the most important. And though they allege that it is the sun that furnishes them with most of the predictions for great forthcoming events, yet they worship more particularly Saturn. Such predictions made to a number of kings, especially to Alexander, Antigonus, Seleucus, Nicanor, etc., . . . have been so marvellously realised that people were struck with admiration. [Op Cit., I .ii.]
It follows from the above that the declaration made by Qû-tâmy, the Chaldean Adept—to the effect that all that he means to impart in his work to the profane had been told by Saturn to the moon, by the latter to her idol, and by that idol, or teraphim, to himself, the scribe—no more implied idolatry than did the practice of the same method by King (Page 240) David. One fails to perceive in it, therefore, either an apocrypha or a “fairy-tale.” The above-named Chaldaean Initiate lived at a period far anterior to that ascribed to Moses, in whose day the Sacred Science of the sanctuary was still in a flourishing condition. It began to decline only when such scoffers as Lucian had been admitted, and the pearls of the Occult Science had been too often thrown to the hungry dogs of criticism and ignorance.
(Page 241) FEW of our students of Occultism have had the opportunity of examining Egyptian papyri—those living, or rather re-arisen witnesses that Magic, good and bad, was practised many thousands of years back into the night of time. The use of the papyrus prevailed up to the eighth century of our era, when it was given up, and its fabrication fell into disuse. The most curious of the exhumed documents were immediately purchased and taken away from the country. Yet there are a number of beautifully-preserved papyri at Bulak, Cairo, though the greater number have never been yet properly read. [ “The characters employed on those parchments,” writes De Mirville, “ are sometimes hieroglyphics, placed perpendicularly, a kind of lineary tachygraphy (abridged characters), where the image is often reduced to a single stroke; at other times placed in horizontal lines; then the hieratic or sacred writing, going from right to left as in all Semitic languages; lastly, the characters of the country, used for official documents, mostly contracts, etc., but which since the Ptolemies has been also adopted for the monuments.” [v.81. 80. A copy of the Harris papyrus, translated by Chabas-Papyrus Magique - may be studied at the British Museum.]
Others—those that have been carried away and may be found in the museums and public libraries of Europe—have fared no better. In the days of the Vicomte de Rougé, some twenty-five years ago, only a few of them “were two-thirds deciphered;” and among those some most interesting legends, inserted parenthetically and for purposes of explaining royal expenses, are in the Register of the Sacred Accounts.
This may be verified in the so-called “Harris” and Anastasi collections, and in some papyri recently exhumed; one of these gives an account of a whole series of magic feats performed before the Pharaohs Ramses II and III. A curious document, the first-mentioned, truly. It is a papyrus of the fifteenth century B.C., written during the reign of Ramses V., the last king of the eighteenth dynasty, and is the work of the scribe Thoutmes, who notes down some of the events with (Page 242) regard to defaulters occurring on the twelfth and thirteenth days of the month of Paophs. The document shows that in those days of “miracles” in Egypt the taxpayers were not found among the living alone, but every mummy was included. All and everything was taxed; and the Khou of the mummy, in default, was punished “by the priest-exorciser, who deprived it of the liberty of action.” Now what was the Khou? Simply the astral body, or the aerial simulacrum of the corpse or the mummy—that which in China is called the Hauen, and in India the Bhût.
Upon reading this papyrus today, an Orientalist is pretty sure to fling it aside in disgust, attributing the whole affair to the crass superstition of the ancients. Truly phenomenal and inexplicable must have been the dullness and credulity of that otherwise highly philosophical and civilized nation if it could carry on for so many consecutive ages, for thousands of years, such a system of mutual deception! A system whereby the people were deceived by the priests, the priests by their King-Hierophants, and the latter themselves were cheated by the ghosts, which were, in their turn, but “the fruits of hallucination.” The whole of antiquity, from Menes to Cleopatra, from Manu to Vikramaditya, from Orpheus down to the last Roman augur, were hysterical, we are told. This must have been so, if the whole were not a system of fraud. Life and death were guided by, and were under the sway of, sacred “conjuring.” For there is hardly a papyrus, though it be a simple document of purchase and sale, a deed belonging to daily transactions of the most ordinary kind, and that has not Magic, white or black, mixed up in it. It looks as though the sacred scribes of the Nile had purposely, and in a prophetic spirit of race-hatred, carried out the (to them) most unprofitable task of deceiving and puzzling the generations of a future white race of unbelievers yet unborn! Anyhow, the papyri are full of Magic, as are likewise the stelae. We learn, moreover, that the papyrus was not merely a smooth-surfaced parchment, a fabric made of
Ligneous matter from a shrub, the pellicles of which superposed one over the other formed a kind of writing paper;
but that the shrub itself, the implements and tools for fabricating the parchment etc., were all previously subjected to a process of magical preparation—according to the ordinance of the Gods, who had taught that art, as they had all others, to their Priest-Hierophants.
There are, however, some modern Orientalists who seem to have an inkling of the true nature of such things, and especially of the analogy and the relations that exist between the Magic of old and our modern-day phenomena.
Evidence of Papyri -
(Page 243) Chabas is one of these, for he indulges, in his translation of the “Harris” papyrus, in the following reflections:
Without having recourse to the imposing ceremonies of the wand of Hermes, or to the obscure formulae of an unfathomable mysticism, a mesmeriser in our own day will, by means of a few passes, disturb the organic faculties of a subject, inculcate the knowledge of a foreign language, transport him to a far-distant country, or into secret places, make him guess the thoughts of those absent, read in closed letters, etc. . . . The antre of the modern sybil is a modest-looking room, the tripod has made room for a small round table, a hat, a plate, a piece of furniture of the most vulgar kind; only the latter is even superior to the oracle of antiquity [how does M. Chabas know?], inasmuch as the latter only spoke, [ And what of the “Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin,” the words that “the fingers of a man’s hand,” whose body and arm remained invisible, wrote on the walls of Belshazzar’s palace? (Daniel. v.) What of the writings of Simon the Magician, and the magic characters on the walls and in the air of the crypts of Initiation, without mentioning the tables of stone on which the finger of God wrote the commandments? Between the writing of one God and other Gods the difference, if any, lies only in their respective natures; and if the tree is to be known by its fruits, then preference would have to be given always to the Pagan Gods. It is the immortal “To be or not to be.” Either all of them are - or at any rate, may be - true, or all are surely pious frauds and the result of credulity.] while the oracle of our day writes its answers. At the command of the medium the spirits of the dead descend to make the furniture creak, and the authors of bygone centuries deliver to us works written by them beyond the grave. Human credulity has no narrower limits today than it had at the dawn of historical times . . . . As teratology is an essential part of general physiology now, so the pretended Occult Sciences occupy in the annals of humanity a place which is not without its importance, and deserve for more than one reason the attention of the philosopher and the historian. [ Papyrus Magique. p.186.]
Selecting the two Champollions, Lenormand, Bunsen, Victomte de Rougé, and several other Egyptologists to serve as our witnesses, let us see what they say of Egyptian Magic and Sorcery. They may get out of the difficulty by accounting for each “superstitious belief” and practice by attributing them to a chronic psychological and physiological derangement, and to collective hysteria, if they like; still facts are there, staring us in the face, from the hundreds of these mysterious papyri, exhumed after a rest of four, five, and more thousands of years, with their magical containments and evidence of antediluvian Magic.
A small library, found in Thebes, has furnished fragments of every kind of ancient literature, many of which are dated, and several of which have thus been assigned to the accepted age of Moses. Books or manuscripts on ethics, history, religion and medicine, calendars and (Page 244) registers, poems and novels—everything—may be had in that precious collection; and old legends - traditions of long forgotten ages (please to remark this: legends recorded during the Mosaic period)—are already referred to therein as belonging to an immense antiquity, to the period of the dynasties of Gods and Giants. Their chief contents, however, are formulae of exorcisms against black Magic, and funeral rituals: true breviaries, or the vade mecum of every pilgrim-traveller in eternity. These funeral texts are generally written in hieratic characters. At the head of the papyrus is invariably placed a series of scenes, showing the defunct appearing before a host of Deities successively, who have to examine him. Then comes the judgement of the Soul, while the third act begins with the launching of that Soul into the divine light. Such papyri are often forty feet long. [ See Maspero’s Guide to the Bulah Museum, among others.]
The following is extracted from general descriptions. It will show how the moderns understand and interpret Egyptian (and other) Symbology.
The papyrus of the priest Nevo-loo (or Nevolen), at the Louvre, may be selected for one case. First of all there is the bark carrying the coffin, a black chest containing the defunct’s mummy. His mother, Ammenbem-Heb, and his sister, Hooissanoob, are near; at the head and feet of the corpse stand Nephtys and Isis clothed in red, and near them a priest of Osiris clad in his panther’s skin, his censer in his right hand, and four assistants carrying the mummy’s intestines. The coffin is received by the God Anubis (of the jackal’s head), from the hands of female weepers. Then the Soul rises from its mummy and the Khou (astral body) of the defunct. The former begins its worship of the four genii of the East, of the sacred birds, and of Ammon as a ram. Brought into the “Palace of Truth,” the defunct is before his judges. While the Soul, a scarabaeus, stands in the presence of Osiris, his astral Khou is at the door. Much laughter is provoked in the West by the invocations to various Deities, presiding over each of the limbs of the mummy, and of the living human body. Only judge: in the papyrus of the mummy Petamenoph “the anatomy becomes theographical,” “astrology is applied to physiology,” or rather “to the anatomy of the human body, the heart and the soul.” The defunct’s “hair belongs to the Nile, his eyes to Venus (Isis), his ears to Macedo, the guardian of the tropics; his nose to Anubis, his left temple to the Spirit dwelling in the sun . . . .What a series of intolerable absurdities and ignoble prayers . . . . to Osiris, imploring him to give the defunct in the other world, geese, eggs, pork, etc.” [ De Mirville (from whom much of the preceding is taken). v 8I, 85 ]
Symbols and Their Reading - (Page 245) It might have been prudent, perhaps, to have waited to ascertain whether all these terms of “geese, eggs, and pork” had not some other Occult meaning. The Indian Yogi who, in an exoteric work, is invited to drink a certain intoxicating liquor till he loses his senses, was also regarded as a drunkard representing his sect and class, until it was found that the Esoteric sense of that “spirit” was quite different; that it meant divine light, and stood for the ambrosia of Secret Wisdom.
The symbols of the dove and the lamb which abound now in Eastern and Western Christian Churches may also be exhumed long ages hence, and speculated upon as objects of present-day worship. And then some “Occidentalist,” in the forthcoming ages of high Asiatic civilization and learning, may write karmically upon the same as follows: “The ignorant and superstitious Gnostics and Agnostics of the sects of ‘Pope’ and ‘Calvin’ (the two monster Gods of the Dynamite-Christian period) adored a pigeon and a sheep!” There will be portable hand-fetishes in all and every age for the satisfaction and reverence of the rabble, and the Gods of one race will always be degraded into devils by the next one. The cycles revolve within the depths of Lethe, and Karma shall reach Europe as it has Asia and her religions.
This grand and dignified language [in the Book of the Dead], these pictures full of majesty, this orthodoxy of the whole evidently proving a very precise doctrine concerning the immortality of the soul and its personal survival,
as shown by De Rougé and Abbe Van Drival, have charmed some Orientalists. The psychostasy (or judgment of the Soul) is certainly a whole poem to him who can read it correctly and interpret the images therein. In that picture we see Osiris, the horned, with his sceptre hooked at the end —the original of the pastoral bishop’s crook or crosier—the Soul hovering above, encouraged by Tmei, daughter of the Sun of Righteousness and Goddess of Mercy and Justice; Horus and Anubis, weighing the deeds of the soul. One of these papyri shows the Soul found guilty of gluttony sentenced to be re-born on earth as a hog; forthwith comes the learned conclusion of an Orientalist, (Page 246) “This is an indisputable proof of belief in metempsychosis, of transmigration into animals,” etc.
Perchance the Occult law of Karma might explain the sentence otherwise. It may, for all our Orientalists know, refer to the physiological vice in store for the Soul when re-incarnated—a vice that will lead that personality into a thousand and one scrapes and mis-adventures.
Tortures to begin with, then metempsychosis during 3,000 years as a hawk, an angel a lotus-flower, a heron, a stork, a swallow, a serpent, and a crocodile: one sees that the consolation of such a progress was far from being satisfactory.
argues De Mirville, in his work on the Satanic character of the Gods of Egypt. [See De Mirville. v. 84, 85.] Again, a simple suggestion may throw on this a great light. Are the Orientalists quite sure they have read correctly the “metempsychosis during 3,000 years”? The Occult Doctrine teaches that Karma waits at the threshold of Devachan (the Amenti of the Egyptians) for 3,000 years; that then the eternal Ego is reincarnated de novo, to be punished in its new temporary personality for sins committed in the preceding birth, and the suffering for which in one shape or another, will atone for past misdeeds. And the hawk, the lotus-flower, the heron, serpent, or bird —every object in Nature, in short—had its symbolical and manifold meaning in ancient religious emblems. The man who all his life acted hypocritically and passed for a good man, but had been in sober reality watching like a bird of prey his chance to pounce upon his fellow creatures, and had deprived them of their property, will be sentenced by Karma to bear the punishment for hypocrisy and covetousness in a future life. What will it be? Since every human unit has ultimately to progress in its evolution, and since that “man” will be reborn at some future time as a good, sincere, well-meaning man, his sentence to be re-incarnated as a hawk may simply mean that he will be regarded metaphorically as such. That, notwithstanding his real, good, intrinsic qualities, he will, perhaps during a long life, be unjustly and falsely charged with and suspected of greed and hypocrisy and of secret exactions, all of which will make him suffer more than he can bear. The law of retribution can never err, and yet how many such innocent victims of false appearance and human malice do we not meet in this world of incessant illusion, of mistakes and deliberate wickedness. We see them every day, and they may be found within the personal experience of each of us.
Rebirth and Transmigration - (Page 247) What Orientalist can say with any degree of assurance that he has understood the religions of old? The metaphorical language of the priests has never been more than superficially revealed, and the hieroglyphics have been very poorly mastered to this day. [ One sees this difficulty arise even with a perfectly known language like Sanskrit, the meaning of which is far easier to comprehend than the hieratic writings of Egypt. Everyone knows how hopelessly the Sanskritists are often puzzled over the real meaning and how they fail in rendering the meaning correctly in their respective translations, in which one Orientalist contradicts the other.
What says Isis Unveiled on this question of Egyptian rebirth and transmigration, and does it clash with anything that we say now?
It will be observed that this philosophy of cycles, which was allegorized by the Egyptian Hierophants in the “cycle of necessity,” explains at the same time the allegory of the “Fall of Man,” According to the Arabian descriptions, each of the seven chambers of the pyramids—those grandest of all cosmic symbols—was known by the name of a planet. The peculiar architecture of the pyramids shows in itself the drift of the metaphysical thought of their builders. The apex is lost in the clear blue sky of the land of the Pharaohs, and typifies the primordial point lost in the unseen Universe from whence started the first race of the spiritual prototypes of man. Each mummy from the moment that it was embalmed lost its physical individuality in one sense: it symbolised the human race. Placed in such a way as was best calculated to aid the exit of the “Soul,” the latter had to pass through the seven planetary chambers before it made its exit through the symbolical apex. Each chamber typified, at the same time, one of the seven spheres [ of our Chain] and one of the seven higher types of physico-spiritual humanity alleged to be above our own. Every 3000 years the soul, representative of its race, had to return to its primal point of departure before it underwent another evolution into a more perfected spiritual and physical transformation. We must go deep indeed into the abstruse metaphysics of Oriental mysticism before we can realise fully the infinitude of the subjects that were embraced at one sweep by the majestic thought of its exponents. [Op. cit.,i. 297.]
This is all Magic when once the details are given; and it relates at the same time to the evolution of our seven Root-Races, each with the characteristics of its special guardian or “God,” and his Planet. The astral body of each Initiate, after death, had to reenact in its funeral mystery the drama of the birth and death of each Race—the past and the future—and pass through the seven “planetary chambers,” which as said above, typified also the seven spheres of our Chain.
The mystic doctrine of Eastern Occultism teaches that
“The Spiritual Ego [not the astral Khou] has to revisit, before it incarnates into a new body, the scenes it left at its last disincarnation. It (Page 248) has to see for itself and take cognizance of all the effects produced by the causes [the Nidânas] generated by its actions in a previous life; that, seeing, it should recognize the justice of the decree, and help the law of Retribution [Karma] instead of impeding it. [ Book II., Commentary.]
The translations by Vicomte de Rougé of several Egyptian papyri, imperfect as they may be, give us one advantage: they show undeniably the presence in them of white, divine Magic, as well as of Sorcery, and the practice of both throughout all the dynasties. The Book of the Dead, far older than Genesis [ Bunsen and Champollion so declare, and Dr. Carpenter says that the Book of the Dead, sculptured on the oldest monuments, with “the very phrases we find in the New Testament in connection with the Day of Judgment . . . was engraved probably 2,000 years before the time of Christ.” (See Isis Unveiled, i. 518.) ] or any other book of the Old Testament, shows it in every line. It is full of incessant prayers and exorcisms against the Black Art. Therein Osiris is the conquerer of the “aerial demons.” The worshipper implores his help against Matat, “from whose eye proceeds the invisible arrow.” This “invisible arrow” that proceeds from the eye of the Sorcerer (whether living or dead) and that “circulates throughout the world,” is the evil eye—cosmic in its origin, terrestrial in its effects on the microcosmical plane. It is not the Latin Christians whom it behoves to view this as a superstition. Their Church indulges in the same belief, and had even a prayer against the “arrow circulating in darkness.”
The most interesting of all those documents, however, is the “Harris” papyrus, called in France “le papyrus magique de Chabas,” as it was first translated by the latter. It is a manuscript written in hieratic characters, translated, commented upon, and published in 1860 by M. Chabas, but purchased at Thebes in 1855 by Mr. Harris. Its age is given at between twenty-eight and thirty centuries. We quote a few extracts from these translations:
Calendar of lucky and unlucky days . . . He who makes a bull work on the 20th of the month of Pharmuths will surely die; he who on the 24th day of the same month pronounces the name of Seth aloud will see trouble reigning in his house from that day; . . . . he who on the 5th day of Patchous leaves his house falls sick and dies.
Exclaims the translator, whose cultured instincts are revolted:
If one had not these words under our eyes, one could never believe in such servitude at the epoch of the Ramessides. [ De Mirville, v.88. Just such a calendar and horoscope interdictions exist in India in our day, as well as in China and all the Buddhist countries.]
The Egyptian Khous - (Page 249) We belong to the nineteenth century of the Christian era, and are therefore at the height of civilization, and under the benign sway and enlightening influence of the Christian Church, instead of being subject to Pagan Gods of old. Nevertheless we personally know dozens, and have heard of hundreds, of educated, highly-intellectual persons who would as soon think of committing suicide as of starting on any business on a Friday, of dining at a table where thirteen sit down, or of beginning a long journey on a Monday. Napoleon the Great became pale when he saw three candles lit on a table. Moreover, we may gladly concur with De Mirville in this, at any rate, that such “superstitions” are “the outcome of observation and experience.” If the former had never agreed with facts, the authority of the Calendar, he thinks, would not have lasted for a week. But to resume:
Genethliacal influences: The child born on the 5th day of Paophi will be killed by a bull; on the 27th by a serpent. Born on the 4th of the month of Athyr, he will succumb to blows.
This is a question of horoscopic predictions; judiciary astrology is firmly believed in in our own age, and has been proven to be scientifically possible by Kepler.
Of the Khous two kinds were distinguished: first, the justified Khous, i.e., those who had been absolved from sin by Osiris when they were brought before his tribunal; these lived a second life. Secondly, here were the guilty Khous, “the Khous dead a second time;” these were the damned. Second death did not annihilate them, but they were doomed to wander about and to torture people. Their existence had phases analogous to those of the living man, a bond so intimate between the dead and the living that one sees how the observation of religious funeral rites and exorcisms and prayers (or rather magic incantations) should have become necessary. [ See De Mirville. iii.65]. Says one prayer:
Do not permit that the venom should master his limbs [of the defunct ], . . .that he should be penetrated by any male dead, or any female dead; or that the shadow of any spirit should haunt him (or her).”
M. Chabas adds:
These Khous were beings of that kind to which human beings belong after their death; they were exorcised in the name of the god Chons . . . .The Manes then could enter the bodies of the living, haunt and obsess the formulae and talismans, and especially statues or divine figures were used against such formidable invasions. [ Ibid. p.168]. They were combatted by the help of the divine power, the god (Page 250) Chons being famed for such deliverances. The Khou, in obeying the order of the god, none the less preserved the precious faculty inherent in him of accommodating himself in any other body at will.
The most frequent formula of exorcism is as follows. It is very suggestive;
Men, gods, elect, dead spirits, amous, negroes, menti-u, do not look at this soul to show cruelty toward it.
This is addressed to all who were acquainted with Magic.
“Amulets and mystic names.” This chapter is called “very mysterious,” and contains invocations to Penhakahakaherher and Uranaokarsankrobite, and other such easy names. Says Chabas:
We have proofs that mystic names similar to these were in common use during the stay of the Israelites in Egypt.
And we may add that, whether got from the Egyptians or the Hebrews, these are sorcery names. The student can consult the works of Éliphas Lévi, such as his Grimoire des Sorciers. In these exorcisms Osiris is called Mamuram-Kahab, and is implored to prevent the twice-dead Khou from attacking the justified Khou and his next of kin, since the accursed (astral spook)
Can take any form he likes and penetrate at will into any locality or body.
In studying Egyptian papyri, one begins to find that the subjects of the Pharaohs were not very much inclined to the Spiritism or Spiritualism of their day. They dreaded the “blessed spirit” of the dead more than a Roman Catholic dreads the devil!
But how uncalled-for and unjust is the charge against the Gods of Egypt that they are these “devils,” and against the priests of exercising their magic powers with the help of “the fallen angels,” may be seen in more than one papyrus. For one often finds in them records of Sorcerers sentenced to the death penalty, as though they had been living under the protection of the holy Christian Inquisition. Here is one case during the reign of Ramses III, quoted by De Mirville from Chabas.
The first page begins with these words: “From the place where I am to the people of my country.” There is reason to suppose, as one will see, that the person who wrote this, in the first personal pronoun, is a magistrate making a report, and attesting it before men, after an accustomed formula, for here is the main part of this accusation: “This Hai, a bad man, was an overseer [or perhaps keeper] of sheep: he said: “Can I have a book that will give me great power?’ . . . . And a book was given him with the formulae of Ramses-Meri-Amen, the great God, his royal master; and he succeeded in getting a divine power enabling him to fascinate men.
Obsession in Egypt -
(Page 251) He also succeeded in building a place and in finding a very deep place, and produced men of Menh [ magical homunculi?] and . . . love-writings . . stealing them from the Khen [ the occult library of the palace] by the hand of the stonemason Atirma, . . . by forcing one of the supervisors to go aside, and acting magically on the others. Then he sought to read futurity by them and succeeded. All the horrors and abominations he had conceived in his heart, he did them really, he practised them all, and other great crimes as well, such as the horror [?] of all the Gods and Goddesses. Likewise let the prescriptions great [severe?] unto death be done unto him, such as the divine words order to be done to him.” The accusation does not stop there, it specifies the crimes. The first line speaks of a hand paralysed by means of the men of Menh, to whom it is simply said, “Let such an effect be produced,” and it is produced. Then come the great abominations, such as deserve death. . . . The judges who had examined him (the culprit) reported saying, “Let him die according to the order of Pharaoh, and according to what is written in the lines of the divine language.”
M. Chabas remarks:
Documents of this kind abound, but the task of analysing them all cannot be attempted with the limited means we possess. [ Maimonides in his Treatise on Idolatry says, speaking of Jewish teraphim: “They talked with men.” To this day Christian Sorcerers in Italy, and negro Voodoos at New Orleans fabricate small wax figures in the likeness of their victims, and transpierce them with needles, the wound, as on the teraphim or Menh, being repercussed on the living, often killing them. Mysterious deaths are still many, and not all are traced to the guilty hand.
Then there is an inscription taken in the temple of Khous, the God who had power over the elementaries, at Thebes. It was presented by M. Prisse d’Avenue to the Imperial—now National —Library of Paris, and was translated first by Mr. S. Birch. There is in it a whole romance of Magic. It dates from the day of Ramses XII. [The Ramses of Lepsius, who reigned some 1300 years before our era.] of the twentieth dynasty; it is from the rendering of Mr. de Rougé as quoted by De Mirville, that we now translate it.
This monument tells us that one of the Ramses of the twentieth dynasty, while collecting at Naharain the tributes paid to Egypt by the Asiatic nations, fell in love with a daughter of the chief of Bakhten, one of his tributaries, married her and, bringing her to Egypt with him, raised her to the dignity of Queen, under the royal name of Ranefrou. Soon afterwards the chief of Bakhten dispatched a messenger to Ramses, praying the assistance of Egyptian science for Bent-Rosh, a young sister of the queen, attacked with illness in all her limbs.
The messenger asked expressly that a “wise-man” (an Initiate - Reh-Het) should be sent. The king gave orders that all the hierogrammatists of the palace and the guardians of the secret books of the Khen should be sent for, and choosing from among them the royal scribe Thoth-em-Hebi, an intelligent man, well versed in writing, charged him to examine the sickness. (Page 252) Arrived at Bakhten, Thoth-em-Hebi found that Bent-Rosh was possessed by a Khou (Em-seh-‘eru ker h’ou), but declared himself too weak to engage in a struggle with him. [ One may judge how trustworthy are the translations of such Egyptian documents when the sentence is rendered in three different ways by three Egyptologists. Rougé says: “He found her in a state to fall under the power of spirits,” or, “with her limbs quite stiff.” (?) another version: and Chabas translates: “And the Scribe found the Khou too wicked.” Between her being in possession of an evil Khou and “with her limbs quite stiff.” there is a difference.]
Eleven years elapsed, and the young girl’s state did not improve. The chief of Bakhten again sent his messenger, and on his formal demand Khons-peiri-Seklerem-Zam, one of the divine forms of Chons - God the Son of the Theban Trinity - was dispatched to Bakhten. . . .
The God [incarnate] having saluted (besa) the patient, she felt immediately relieved, and the Khou who was in her manifested forthwith with his intention of obeying the orders of the God. “O great God, who forces: the phantom to vanish,” said the Khou, “I am thy slave and I will return whence I came!” [ De Mirville, v.247, 248 ].
Evidently Khons-peiri-Seklerem-Zam was a real Hierophant of the class named the “Sons of God,” since he is said to be one of the forms of the God Khons; which means either that he was considered as an incarnation of that God—an Avatâra—or that he was a full Initiate. The same text shows that the temple to which he belonged was one of those to which a School of Magic was attached. There was a Khen in it, or that portion of the temple which was inaccessible to all but the highest priest, the library or depository of sacred works, to the study and care of which special priests were appointed (those whom all the Pharaohs consulted in cases of great importance), and wherein they communicated with the Gods and obtained advice from them. Does not Lucian tell his readers in his description of the temple of Hierapolis, of “Gods who manifest their presence independently?” [ Some translators would have Lucian speak of the inhabitants of the city, but they fail to show that this view is maintainable.] And further on that he once travelled with a priest from Memphis, who told him he had passed twenty-three years in the subterranean crypts of his temple, receiving instructions on Magic from the Goddess Isis herself. Again we read that it was by Mercury himself that the great Sesostris (Ramses II.) was instructed in the Sacred Sciences. On which Jablonsky remarks that we have here the reason why Amun (Ammon)—whence he thinks our “Amen” is derived—was the real evocation to the light. [ De Mirville, v. 256,,257.]
In the Papyrus Anastasi, which teems with various formulae for the evocation of Gods, and with exorcisms against Khous and the elementary demons, the seventh paragraph shows plainly the difference made between the real Gods, the Planetary Angels, and those shells of mortals which are left behind in Kama-loka, as though to tempt mankind and to puzzle it the more hopelessly in its vain search after the truth, outside the Occult Sciences and the veil of Initiation.
Two Rituals of Magic - (Page 253) This seventh verse says with regard to such divine evocation or theomantic consultations:
One must invoke that divine and great name [ How can De Mirville see Satan in the Egyptian God of the great divine Name, when he himself admits that nothing was greater than the name of the oracle of Dodona, as it was that of the God of the Jews, IAO, or Jehovah? That oracle had been brought by the Pelasgians to Dodona more then fourteen centuries B.C. and left with the forefathers of the Hellenes, and its history is well-known and may be read in Herodotus. Jupiter, who loved the fair nymph of the ocean. Dodona, had ordered Pelasgus to carry his cult to Thessaly. The name of the God of that oracle at the temple of Dodona was Zeus Pelasgicos, the Zeuspater (God the Father), or as De Mirville explains: “It was the name par excellence, the name that the Jews held as the ineffable, the unpronounceable Name—in short, Jaoh-pater, i.e., ‘he who was, who is, and who will be,’ otherwise the Eternal.” And the author admits that Maury is right “in discovering in the name of the Vaidic Indra the Biblical Jehovah,” and does not even attempt to deny the etymological connection between the two names - “the great and the lost name with the sun and the thunder-bolts.” Strange confessions, and still stranger contradictions.] only in cases of absolute necessity, and when one feels absolutely pure and irreproachable.
Not so in the formula of black Magic. Reuvens, speaking of the two rituals of Magic of the Anastasi collection, remarks that they
Undeniably form the most instructive commentary upon the Egyptian Mysteries attributed to Jamblichus, and the best pendant to that classical work, for understanding the thaumaturgy of the philosophical sects, thaumaturgy based on ancient Egyptian religion. According to Jamblichus, thaumaturgy was exercised by the ministry of secondary genii. [ Reuvens” Letter to Letronne on the 75th number of the Papyri Anastasi.” See De Mirville, v.255.]
Reuvens closes with a remark which is very suggestive and is very important to the Occultists who defend the antiquity and genuineness of their documents, for he says:
All that he [ Jamblichus] gives out as theology we find as history in our papyri.
But then how deny the authenticity, the credibility, and, beyond all, the trustworthiness of those classical writers, who all wrote about Magic and its Mysteries in a most worshipful spirit of admiration and reverence? Listen to Pindarus, who exclaims:
Happy he who descends into the grave thus initiated, for he knows the end of his life and the kingdom [The Eleusinian Fields.] given by Jupiter. [ Fragments. ix. ]
(Page 254) Or to Cicero:
Initiation not only teaches us to feel happy in this life, but also to die with better hope. [ De Legibus. 11. iv.]
Plato, Pausanias, Strabo, Diodorus and dozens of others bring their evidence as to the great boon of Initiation; all the great as well as the partially-initiated Adepts, share the enthusiasm of Cicero.
Does not Plutarch, thinking of what he had learned in his initiation, console himself for the loss of his wife? Had he not obtained the certitude at the Mysteries of Bacchus that “the soul [ spirit] remains incorruptible, and that there is a hereafter”? . . . Aristophanes went even further: “All those who participated in the Myseries,” he says, “led an innocent, calm, and holy life; they died looking for the light of the Eleusinian Fields [Devachan], while the rest could never expect anything but eternal darkness [ ignorance? ].
. . .And when one thinks about the importance attached by the States to the principle and the correct celebration of the Mysteries, to the stipulations made in their treaties for the security of their celebration, one sees to what degree those Mysteries had so long occupied their first and their last thought.
It was the greatest among public as well as private preoccupations, and this is only natural, since according to Döllinger, “the Eleusinian Mysteries were viewed as the efflorescence of all the Greek religion, as the purest essence of all its conceptions. [ Judaism and Paganism. i. 184.]
Not only conspirators were refused admittance therein, but those who had not denounced them; traitors, perjurers, debauchees, [Frag of Styg., ap. Stob.] . . .so that Porphyry could say that: “Our soul has to be at the moment of death as it was during the Mysteries. i.e., exempt from any blemishes, passion, envy, hatred, or anger.” [ De Special. Legi.]
Magic was considered a Divine Science which led to a participation in the attributes of the Divinity itself. [ De Mirville. v. 278, 279.]
Herodotus, Thales, Parmenides, Empedocles, Orpheus, Pythagoras, all went, each in his day, in search of the wisdom of Egypt’s great Hierophants, in the hope of solving the problems of the universe.
The Mysteries were known to unveil the secret operations of Nature. [Isis Unveiled. i.25 ] The prodigies accomplished by the priests of theurgic magic are so well authenticated and the evidence—if human testimony is worth anything at all—is so overwhelming that, rather than confess that the pagan theurgists far outrivalled the Christians in miracles, Sir David Brewster conceded to the former the greatest proficiency in physics and everything that pertains to natural philosophy. Science finds herself in a very disagreeable dilemma . . . .
(Page 255) “Magic,” says Psellus, “formed the last part of the sacerdotal science. It investigated the nature, power, and quality of everything sublunary: of the elements and their parts, of animals, of various plants and their fruits, of stones and herbs. In short, it explored the essence and power of everything. From hence, therefore, it produced its effects. And it formed statues [magnetized] which procure health, and made all various figures and things [talismans], which could equally become the instruments of disease as well as of health. Often, too, celestial fire is made to appear through magic, and then statues laugh and lamps are spontaneously enkindled. [ Isis Unveiled. I. 282. 283. ]
This assertion of Psellus that Magic “made statues which procure health,” is now proven to the world to be no dream, no vain boast of a hallucinated Theurgist. As Reuvens says, it becomes “history.” For it is found in the Papyrus Magique of Harris and on the votive stele just mentioned. Both Chabas and De Rougé state that:
On the eighteenth line of this very mutilated monument is found the formula with regard to the acquiescence of the God (Chons) who made his consent known by a motion he imparted to his statue. [ De Mirville. v.248 ]
There was even a dispute over it between the two Orientalists. While M. de Rougé wanted to translate the word “Han” by “favour” or “grace,” M. Chabas insisted that “Han” meant a “movement” or “a sign” made by the statue.
Excesses of power, abuse of knowledge and personal ambition very often led selfish and unscrupulous Initiates to black Magic, just as the same causes led to precisely the same thing among Christian popes and cardinals; and it was black Magic that led finally to the abolition of the Mysteries, and not Christianity, as is often erroneously thought. Read Mommsen’s Roman History, vol. i., and you will find that it was the Pagans themselves who put an end to the desecration of the Divine Science. As early as 560 B.C. the Romans had discovered an Occult association, a school of black Magic of the most revolting kind; it celebrated mysteries brought from Etruria, and very soon the moral pestilence had spread all over Italy.
More than seven thousand Initiates were prosecuted, and most of them were sentenced to death . . .
Later on, Titus-Livius shows us another three thousand Initiates sentenced during a single year for the crime of poisoning. [ De Mirville. v. 281.]
(Page 256) And yet black Magic is derided and denied!
Paulthier may or may not be too enthusiastic in saying that India appears to him as
The grand and primitive hearth of human thought, that has ended by embracing the whole ancient world,
but he was right in his idea. That primitive thought led to Occult knowledge, which is our Fifth Race is reflected from the earliest days of the Egyptian Pharaohs down to our modern times. Hardly a hieratic papyrus is exhumed with the tightly swathed-up mummies of kings and high priests that does not contain some interesting information for the modern students of Occultism.
All that is, of course, derided Magic, the outcome of primitive knowledge and of revelation, though it was practised in such ungodly ways by the Atlantean Sorceres that it has since become necessary for the subsequent Race to draw a thick veil over the practices which were used to obtain so-called magical effects on the psychic and on the physical planes. In the letter no one in our century will believe the statements, with the exception of the Roman Catholics, and these will give the acts a satanic origin. Nevertheless, Magic is so mixed up with the history of the world, that if the latter is ever to be written it has to rely upon the discoveries of Archaeology, Egyptology, and hieratic writings and inscriptions; if it insists that they must be free from that “superstition of the ages” it will never see the light. One can well imagine the embarrassing position in which serious Egyptologists, Assyriologists, savants and academicians find themselves. Forced to translate and interpret the old papyri and the archaic inscriptions on stelae and Babylonian cylinders, they find themselves compelled from first to last to face the distasteful, and to them repulsive, subject of Magic, with its incantations and paraphernalia. Here they find sober and grave narratives from the pens of learned scribes, made up under the direct supervision of Chaldaean or Egyptian Hierophants, the most learned among the Philosophers of antiquity. These statements were written at the solemn hour of the death and burial of Pharaohs, High Priests, and other mighty ones of the land of Chemi; their purpose was the introduction of the newly-born, Osirified Soul before the awful tribunal of the “Great Judge” in the region of Amenti—there where a lie was said to outweigh the greatest crimes. Were the Scribes and Hierophants, Pharaohs, and King—Priests all fools or frauds to have either believed in, or tried to make others believe in, such “cock-and-bull stories” as are found in the most respectable papyri? Yet there is no help for it.
Romances - But True - (Page 257) Corroborated by Plato and Herodotus, by Manetho and Syncellus, as by all the greatest and most trustworthy authors and philosophers who wrote upon the subject, those papyri note down—as seriously as they note any history, or any fact well known and accepted as to need no commentary—whole royal dynasties of Manes, to wit, of shadows and phantoms (astral bodies), and such feats of magic skill and such Occult phenomena, that the most credulous Occultist of our own times would hesitate to believe them to be true.
The orientalists have found a plank of salvation, while yet publishing and delivering the papyri to the criticism of literary Sadducees: they generally call them “romances of the days of Pharaoh So-and-So.” The idea is ingenious, if not absolutely fair.
The Origin of the Mysteries
(Page 258) ALL that is explained in the preceding Sections and a hundredfold more was taught in the Mysteries from time immemorial. If the first appearance of those institutions is a matter of historical tradition with regard to some of the later nations, their origin must certainly be assigned to the time of the Fourth Root Race. The Mysteries were imparted to the elect of that Race when the average Atlantean had begun to fall too deeply into sin to be trusted with the secrets of Nature. Their establishment is attributed in the Secret Works to the King-Initiates of the divine dynasties, when the “Sons of God” had gradually allowed their country to become Kookarma-des (land of vice).
The antiquity of the Mysteries may be inferred from the history of the worship of Hercules in Egypt. This Hercules, according to what the priests told Herodotus, was not Grecian, for he says:
Of the Grecian Hercules I could not in no part of Egypt procure any knowledge: . . . the name was never borrowed by Egypt from Greece . . . . Hercules, . . . . as they [the priests] affirm is one of the twelve (great Gods,) who were reproduced from the earlier eight Gods 17,000 years before the year of Amasis.
Hercules is of Indian origin, and—his Biblical chronology put aside—Colonel Tod was quite right in his suggestion that he was Balarâma or Baladeva. Now one must read the Purânas with the Esoteric key in one’s hand in order to find out how on almost every page they corroborate the Secret Doctrine. The ancient classical writers so well understood this truth that they unanimously attributed to Asia the origin of Hercules.
A section of the Mahâbhârata is devoted to the history of the Hercûla, of which race was Vyasa. . . . Diodorus has the same legend with some variety.
An Instant in Heaven - (Page 259) He says: “Hercules was born amongst the Indians and, like the Greeks, they furnish him with a club and lion’s hide.” Both [Krishna and Baladeva] are (lords) of the race (cûla) of Heri (Heri-cul-es) of which the Greeks might have made the compound Hercules.[Tod’s Rajasthañ,i.28.]
The Occult Doctrine explains that Hercules was the last incarnation of one of the seven “Lords of the Flame,” as Krishna’s brother, Baladeva. That his incarnations occurred during the Third, Fourth, and Fifth Root-Races, and that his worship was brought into Egypt from Lanka and India by the later immigrants. That he was borrowed by the Greeks from the Egyptians is certain, the more so as the Greeks place his birth at Thebes, and only his twelve labours at Argos. Now we find in the Vishnu Purâna a complete corroboration of the statement made in the Secret Teachings, of which Purânic allegory the following is a short summary:
Raivata, a grandson of Sharyâti, Manu’s fourth son, finding no man worthy of his lovely daughter, repaired with her to Brahmâ’s region to consult the God in this emergency. Upon his arrival Hâ Hâ Hâhû, and other Gandharvas were singing before the throne, and Raivata, waiting till they had done, imagined that but one Muhûrta (instant) had passed, whereas long ages had elapsed. When they had finished Raivata prostrated himself and explained his perplexity. Then Brahmâ asked him whom he wished for a son-in-law, and upon hearing a few personages named, the Father of the World smiled and said: “Of those whom you have named the third and fourth generation [Root-Races] no longer survive, for many successions of ages [Chatur-Yuga, or the four Yuga cycles] have passed away while you were listening to our songsters. Now on earth the twenty-eighth great age of the present Manu is nearly finished and the Kali period is at hand. You must therefore bestow this virgin-gem upon some other husband. For you are now alone.”
Then the Râja Raivata is told to proceed to Kushasthaî, his ancient capital, which was now Dvârakâ, and where reigned in his stead a portion of the divine being (Vishnu) in the person of Baladeva, the brother of Krishna, regarded as the seventh incarnation of Vishnu whenever Krishna is taken as a full divinity.
“Being thus instructed by the Lotus-born [Brahmâ], Raivata returned with his daughter to earth, where he found the race of men dwindled in stature [see what is said in the Stanzas and Commentaries of the races of mankind gradually decreasing in stature]; . . . (Page 260) reduced in vigour, and enfeebled in intellect. Repairing to the city of Kushasthalî, he found it much altered,” “Krishna had reclaimed from the sea a portion of the country,” which means in plain language that the continents had all been changed meanwhile–-and “had renovated the city”–-or rather built a new one, Dvârakâ; for one reads in the Bhagavad Purâna [Op. cit., ix. iii. 28.] that Kushasthalî was founded and built by Raivata within the sea; and subsequent discoveries showed that it was the same, or on the same spot, as Dvârakâ. Therefore it was on an island before. The allegory in Vishnu Purâna shows King Raivata giving his daughter to “the wielder of the ploughshare”–or rather “the plough-bannered”–Baladeva, who “beholding the damsel of excessively lofty height, . . . .shortened her with the end of his ploughshare, and she became his wife.” [Vishnu Purâna. iv. i. Wilson’s translation, iii. 248-254.]
This is a plain allusion to the Third and Fourth Races–-to the Atlantean giants and the successive incarnations of the “Sons of the Flame” and other orders of Dhyân Chohans in the heroes and kings of mankind, down to the Kali Yuga, or Black Age, the beginning of which is within historical times. Another coincidence: Thebes is the city of a hundred gates, and Dvârakâ is so called from its many gateways or doors, from the word “Dvâra,” “gateway.” Both Hercules and Baladeva are of a passionate, hot temper, and both are renowned for the fairness of their white skins. There is not the slightest doubt that Hercules is Baladeva in Greek dress. Arrian notices the great similarity between the Theban and the Hindu Hercules, the latter being worshipped by the Suraseni who built Methorea, or Mathûrâ, Krishna’s birthplace. The same writer places Sandracottus (Chandragupta, the grandfather of King Asoka, of the clan of Morya) in the direct line of the descendants of Baladeva.
There were no Mysteries in the beginning, we are taught. Knowledge (Vidyâ) was common property, and it reigned universally throughout the Golden Age (Satya Yuga). As says the Commentary:
Men had not created evil yet in those days of bliss and purity, for they were of God-like more than of human nature.
But when mankind, rapidly increasing in numbers, increased also in variety of idiosyncrasies of body and mind, then incarnated Spirit showed its weakness. Natural exaggerations, and along with these superstitions, arose in the less cultured and healthy minds.
Growth of Popular Beliefs - (Page 261) Selfishness was born out of desires and passions hitherto unknown, and but too often knowledge and power were abused, until finally it became necessary to limit the number of those who knew. Thus arose Initiation.
Every separate nation now arranged for itself a religious system, according to its enlightenment and spiritual wants. Worship of mere form being discarded by the wise men, these confined true knowledge to the very few. The need of veiling truth to protect it from desecration becoming more apparent with every generation, a thin veil was used at first, which had to be gradually thickened according to the spread of personality and selfishness, and this led to the Mysteries. They came to be established in every country and among every people, while to avoid strife and misunderstanding exoteric beliefs were allowed to grow up in the minds of the profane masses. Inoffensive and innocent in their incipient stage—like a historical event arranged in the form of a fairy tale, adapted for and comprehensible to the child’s mind—in those distant ages such beliefs could be allowed to grow and make the popular faith without any danger to the more philosophical and abstruse truths taught in the sanctuaries. Logical and scientific observation of the phenomena in Nature, which alone leads man to the knowledge of eternal truths—provided he approaches the threshold of observation unbiassed by preconception and sees with his spiritual eye before he looks at things from their physical aspect—does not lie within the province of the masses. The marvels of the One Spirit of Truth, the ever-concealed and inaccessible Deity, can be unravelled and assimilated only through Its manifestations by the secondary “Gods,” Its acting powers. While the One and Universal Cause has to remain for ever in abscondito, Its manifold action may be traced through the effects in Nature. The latter alone being comprehensible and manifest to average mankind, the Powers causing those effects were allowed to grow in the imagination of the populace. Ages later in the Fifth, the Aryan, Race some unscrupulous priests began to take advantage of the too-easy beliefs of the people in every country, and finally raised those secondary Powers to the rank of God and Gods, thus succeeding in isolating them altogether from the One Universal Cause of all causes. [There were no Brâhmans as a hereditary caste in days of old. In those long-departed ages a man became a Brâhman through personal merit and Initiation. Gradually, however, despotism crept in, and the son of a Brâhman was created a Brâhman by right of protection first, then by that of heredity. The rights of blood replaced those of real merit, and thus arose the body of Brâhmans which was soon changed into a powerful caste.]
(Page 262) Henceforward the knowledge of the primeval truths remained entirely in the hands of the Initiates.
The Mysteries had their weak points and their defects, as every institution welded with the human element must necessarily have. Yet Voltaire has characterised their benefits in a few words:
In the chaos of popular superstitions there existed an institution which has ever prevented man from falling into absolute brutality: it was that of the Mysteries.
Verily, as Ragon puts it of Masonry;
Its temple has Time for duration, the Universe for space . . . .”Let us divide that we may rule,” have said the crafty; “Let us unite to resist,” have said the first Masons.[Des Initiations Anciennes et Modernes. “The mysteries,” says Ragon, “were the gift of India.” In this he is mistaken, for the Âryan race had brought the mysteries of Initiation from Atlantis. Nevertheless he is right in saying that the mysteries preceded all civilisations, and that by polishing the mind and morals of the peoples they served as a base for all the laws—civil, political, and religious.]
Or rather, the Initiates whom the Masons have never ceased to claim as their primitive and direct Masters. The first and fundamental principle of moral strength and power is association and solidarity of thought and purpose. “The Sons of Will and Yoga” united in the beginning to resist the terrible and ever-growing iniquities of the left-hand Adepts, the Atlanteans. This led to the foundation of still more Secret Schools, temples of learning, and of Mysteries inaccessible to all except after the most terrible trials and probations.
Anything that might be said of the earliest Adepts and their divine Masters would be regarded as fiction. It is necessary, therefore, if we would know something of the primitive Initiates to judge of the tree by its fruits; to examine the bearing and the work of their successors in the Fifth Race as reflected in the works of the classic writers and the great philosophers. How were Initiation and the Initiates regarded during some 2,000 years by the Greek and Roman writers? Cicero informs his readers in very clear terms. He says:
An Initiate must practise all the virtues in his power: justice, fidelity, liberality, modesty, temperance; these virtues cause men to forget the talents that he may lack. [ De Off.,i.e. 33.]
When the Egyptian priests said: “All for the people, nothing through the people,” they were right: in an ignorant nation truth must be revealed only to trustworthy persons . . . .We have seen in our days, “all through the people, nothing for the people,” a false and dangerous system. The real axiom ought to be: “All for the people and with the people.” [ Des Initiations, p22.]
A True Priesthood - (Page 263) But in order to achieve this reform the masses have to pass through a dual transformation: (a) to become divorced from every element of exoteric superstition and priestcraft, and (b) to become educated men, free from every danger of being enslaved whether by a man or an idea.
This, in view of the preceding may seem paradoxical. The Initiates were “priests,” we may be told—at any rate, all the Hindu, Egyptian, Chaldaean, Greek, Phoenician, and other Hierophants and Adepts were priests in the temples, and it was they who invented their respective exoteric creeds. To this the answer is possible: “The cowl does not make the friar.” If one may believe tradition and the unanimous opinion of ancient writers, added to the examples we have in the “priests” of India, the most conservative nation in the world, it becomes quite certain that the Egyptian priests were no more priests in the sense we give to the word than are the temple Brâhmans. They could never be regarded as such if we take as our standard the European clergy. Laurens observes very correctly that:
The priests of Egypt were not, strictly speaking, ministers of religion. The word “priest,” which translation has been badly interpreted, had an acceptation very different from the one that is applied to it among us. In the language of antiquity, and especially in the sense of the initiation of the priests of ancient Egypt, the word “priest” is synonymous with that of “philosopher.” . . . . The institution of the Egyptian priests seems to have been really a confederation of sages gathered to study the art of ruling men, to centre the domain of truth, modulate its propagation, and arrest its too dangerous dispersion.[ Essais Historiques sur la Franc-Maçonnerie, pp. 142. 143.]
The Egyptian Priests, like the Brâhmans of old, held the reins of the governing powers, a system that descended to them by direct inheritance from the Initiates of the great Atlantis. The pure cult of Nature in the earliest patriarchal days—the word “patriarch” applying in its first original sense to the Progenitors of the human race, [The word “patriarch” is composed of the Greek word “Patria” (“family.” “tribe,” or “nation”) and “Archos” (a “chief”, the paternal principle. The Jewish Patriarchs who were pastors, passed their name to the Christian Patriarchs, yet they were no priests, but were simply the heads of their tribes, like the Indian Rishis.] the Fathers, Chiefs, and Instructors of primitive men—became the heirloom of those (Page 264) alone who could discern the noumenon beneath the phenomenon. Later, the Initiates transmitted their knowledge to the human kings, as their divine Masters had passed it to their forefathers. It was their prerogative and duty to reveal the secrets of Nature that were useful to mankind—the hidden virtues of plants, the art of healing the sick, and of bringing about brotherly love and mutual help among mankind. No Initiate was one if he could not heal—aye, recall to life from apparent death (coma) those who, too long neglected, would have indeed died during their lethargy. [There is no need to observe here that the resurrection of a really dead body is an impossibility in Nature. ] Those who showed such powers were forthwith set above the crowds, and were regarded as Kings and Initiates . Gautama Buddha was a King-Initiate, a healer, and recalled to life those who were in the hands of death. Jesus and Apollonius were healers, and were both addressed as Kings by their followers. Had they failed to raise those who were to all intents and purposes the dead, none of their names would have passed down to posterity; for this was the first and crucial test, the certain sign that the Adept had upon Him the invisible hand of a primordial divine Master, or was an incarnation of one of the “Gods.”
The later royal privilege descended to our Fifth Race kings through the kings of Egypt. The latter were all initiated into the mysteries of medicine, and they healed the sick, even when, owing to the terrible trials and labours of final Initiation, they were unable to become full Hierophants. They were healers by privilege and by tradition, and were assisted in the healing art by the Hierophants of the temples, when they themselves were ignorant of Occult curative Science. So also in far later historical times we find Pyrrhus curing the sick by simply touching them with his foot; Vespasian and Hadrian needed only to pronounce a few words taught to them by their Hierophants, in order to restore sight to the blind and health to the cripple. From that time onward history has recorded cases of the same privilege conferred on the emperors and kings of almost every nation. [The kings of Hungary claimed that they could cure the jaundice; the Dukes of Burgandy were credited with preserving people from the plague; the kings of Spain delivered those possessed by the devil. The prerogative of curing the king’s evil was given to the kings of France, in reward for the virtues of good King Robert. Francis the First, during a short stay at Marseilles for his son’s wedding, touched and cured of that disease upwards of 500 persons. The kings of England had the same privilege.]
The Egyptian Priests - (Page 265) That which is known of the Priests of Egypt and of the ancient Brâmans, corroborated as it is by all the ancient classics and historical writers, gives us the right to believe in that which is only traditional in the opinion of sceptics. Whence the wonderful knowledge of the Egyptian Priests in every department of Science, unless they had it from a still more ancient source? The famous “Four,” the seats of learning in old Egypt, are more historically certain than the beginnings of modern England. It was in the great Theban sanctuary that Pythagoras upon his arrival from India studied the Science of Occult numbers. It was in Memphis that Orpheus popularized his too-abstruse Indian metaphysics for the use of Magna Grecia; and thence Thales, and ages later Democritus, obtained all they knew. It is to Saïs that all the honour must be given of the wonderful legislation and the art of ruling people, imparted by its Priests to Lycurgus and Solon, who will both remain objects of admiration for generations to come. And had Plato and Eudoxus never gone to worship at the shrine of Heliopolis, most probably the one would have never astonished future generations with his ethics, nor the other with his wonderful knowledge of mathematics.[ See Laurens’ Essais Historiques for further information as to the world-wide, universal knowledge of the Egyptian Priests.]
The great modern writer on the Mysteries of Egyptian Initiation—one, however, who knew nothing of those in India—the late Ragon, has not exaggerated in maintaining that:
All the notions possessed by Hindustan, Persia, Syria, Arabia, Chaldaea, Sydonia, and the priests of Babylonia, [on the secrets of Nature], was known to the Egyptian priests. It is thus Indian philosophy, without mysteries, which, having penetrated into Chaldaea and ancient Persia, gave rise to the doctrine of Egyptian Mysteries.[Des Initiations. p.24.]
The Mysteries preceded the hieroglyphics. [The word comes from the Greek ‘hieros’ (“sacred”) and “glupho” (“I grave”). The Egyptian characters were sacred to the Gods, as the Indian Devanâgarî is the language of the Gods.] They gave birth to the latter, as permanent records were needed to preserve and commemorate their secrets. It is primitive Philosophy [The same author had (as Occultists have) a very reasonable objection to the modern etymology of the word “philosophy,” which is interpreted “love of wisdom,” and is nothing of the kind. The philosophers were scientists, and philosophy was a real science—not simply verbiage, as it is in our day. The term is composed of two Greek words whose meaning is intended to convey its secret sense, and ought to be interpreted as “wisdom of love.” Now it is in the last word, “love,” that lies hidden the esoteric significance: for “love” does not stand here as a noun, nor does it mean “affection” or “fondness.” but is the term used for Eros, that primordial principle in divine creation, synonymous with χσφοζ, the abstract desire in Nature for procreation, resulting in an everlasting series of phenomena. It means “divine love,” that universal element of divine omnipresence spread throughout Nature and which is at once the chief cause and effect. The “wisdom of love” (or “philosophia,’) meant attraction to and love of everything hidden beneath objective phenomena and the knowledge thereof. Philosophy meant the highest Adeptship—love of and assimilation with Deity. In his modesty Pythagoras even refused to be called a Philosopher (or one who knows every hidden thing in things visible: cause and effect, or absolute truth), and called himself simply a Sage, an aspirant to philosophy, or to Wisdom of Love—love in its exoteric meaning being as degraded by men then as it is now by its purely terrestrial application.] that has served as the (Page 266) foundation-stone for modern philosophy; only the progeny, while perpetuating the features of the external body, has lost on its way the Soul and Spirit of its parent.
Initiation, though it contained neither rules and principles, nor any special teaching of Science—as now understood—was nevertheless Science, and the Science of sciences. And though devoid of dogma, of physical discipline, and of exclusive ritual, it was yet the one true Religion—that of eternal truth. Outwardly it was a school, a college, wherein were taught sciences, arts, ethics, legislation, philanthropy, the cult of the true and real nature of cosmic phenomena; secretly, during the mysteries, practical proofs of the latter were given. Those who could learn on all things—i.e., those who could look the great Isis in her unveiled face and bear the awful majesty of the Goddess—became Initiates. But the children of the Fifth Race had fallen too deeply into matter always to do so with impunity. Those who failed disappeared from the world, without leaving a trace behind. Which of the highest kings would have dared to claim any individual, however high his social standing, from the stern priests, once that the victim had crossed the threshold of their sacred Adytum?
The noble precepts taught by the Initiates of the early races passed to India, Egypt, and Greece, to China and Chaldaea, and thus spread all over the world. All that is good, noble, and grand in human nature, every divine faculty and aspiration, were cultured by the Priest-Philosophers who sought to develop them in their Initiates. Their code of ethics, based on altruism, has become universal. It is found in Confucius, the “atheist,” who taught that “he who loves not his brother has no virtue in him,” and in the Old Testament precept, “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” [Lev., xix. 18.] The greater Initiates became like unto Gods, and Socrates, in Plato’s Phaedo, is represented as saying:
The Initiates are sure to come into the company of the Gods.
Revealing and Reveiling - (Page 267) In the same work the great Athenian Sage is made to say:
It is quite apparent that those who have established the Mysteries, or the secret assemblies of the Initiates, were no mean persons, but powerful genii, who from the first ages had endeavoured to make us understand under those enigmas that he who will reach the invisible regions unpurified will be hurled into the abyss [the Eighth Sphere of the Occult Doctrine; that is, he will lose his personality for ever], while he who will attain them purged of the maculations of this world, and accomplished in virtues, will be received in the abode of the Gods.
Said Clemens Alexandrinus, referring to the Mysteries:
Here ends all teaching. One sees Nature and all things.
A Christian Father of the Church speaks then as did the Pagan Pretextatus, the pro-consul of Achaia (fourth century A.D.), “a man of eminent virtues,” who remarked that to deprive the Greeks of “the sacred Mysteries which bind in one the whole of mankind,” was to render their very lives worthless to them. Would the Mysteries have ever obtained the highest praise from the noblest men of antiquity had they not been of more than human origin? Read all that is said of this unparalleled institution, as much by those who had never been initiated, as by the Initiates themselves. Consult Plato, Euripides, Socrates, Aristophanes, Pindar, Plutarch, Isocrates, Diodorus, Cicero, Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius, not to name dozens of other famous Sages and writers. That which the Gods and Angels had revealed exoteric religions, beginning with that moses, reveiled and hid for ages from the sight of the world. Joseph, the son of Jacob, was an Initiate, otherwise he would not have married Aseneth, the daughter of Petephre (“Potiphar”—“he who belongs to Phre,” the Sun-God), priest of Heliopolis and governor of On. [“On,” the “Sun,” the Egyptian name of Heliopolis (the “City of the Sun”)]. Every truth revealed by Jesus, and which even the Jews and early Christians understood, was reviled by the Church that pretends to serve Him. Read what Seneca says, as quoted by Dr. Kenealy:
“"The world being melted and having reëntered the bosom of Jupiter [or Parabrahman], this God continues for some time totally concentred in himself and remains concealed, as it were, wholly immersed in the contemplation of his own ideas. Afterwards we see a new world spring from him . . . .An innocent race of men is formed.” And again, speaking of mundane dissolution as involving the destruction or death of all, he [Seneca] teaches us that when the laws of Nature shall be buried in ruin and the last day of the world shall come, the Southern Pole shall crush, as it falls, all the regions of Africa; and the North Pole shall overwhelm all the countries beneath its axis. The affrighted sun shall be deprived of its light: (Page 268) the palace of heaven, falling to decay, shall produce at once both life and death, and some kind of dissolution shall equally seize upon all the deities, who thus shall return to their original chaos. [Book of God, p. 160.]
One might fancy oneself reading the Purânic account by Paràshara of the great Pralaya. It is nearly the same thing, idea for idea. Has Christianity nothing of the kind? Let the reader open any English Bible and read chapter iii of the Second Epistle of Peter, and he will find there the same ideas.
There shall come in the last days scoffers, . . . . saying, Where is the promise of his coming? For since the fathers fell asleep all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished. But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are . . . .reserved unto fire, . . . .in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat. . . Nevertheless we . . . .look for new heavens and a new earth.
If the interpreters chose to see in this a reference to a creation, a deluge, and a promised coming of Christ, when they will live in a New Jerusalem in heaven, that is no fault of Peter. What he meant was the destruction of the Fifth Race and the appearance of a new continent for the Sixth Race.
The Druids understood the meaning of the Sun in Taurus, therefore when all the fires were extinguished on the 1st of November their sacred and inextinguishable fire remained alone to illumine the horizon like those of the Magi and the modern Zoroastrian. And like the early Fifth Race and the later Chaldaeans and Greeks, and again like the Christians (who do it to this day without suspecting the real meaning), they greeted the “Morning-Star,” the beautiful Venus-Lucifer. [Mr Kenealy quotes, in his Book of God, Vallancey, who says: “I had not been a week landed in Ireland from Gibraltar, where I had studied Hebrew and Chaldaic under Jews of various countries, when I heard a peasant girl say to a boor standing by her ‘Feach an Maddin Nag’(Behold the morning star) pointing to the planet Venus, the Maddena Nag of the Chaldeans.”] Strabo speaks of an island near Britannia where Ceres and Persephone were worshipped with the same rites as in Samothrace, and this was the sacred Ierna, where a perpetual fire was lit. The Druids believed in the rebirth of man, not, as Lucian explains,
That the same Spirit shall animate a new body, not here, but in a different world,
but in a series of reïncarnations in this same world; for as Diodorus says, they declared that the souls of men after a determinate period would pass into other bodies. [There was a time when the whole world, the totality of mankind, had one religion, as they were of “one lip.” “All the religions of the earth were at first one, and emanated from one centre.” says Faber.]
Atlanteans Degenerating - (Page 269) These tenets came to the Fifth Race Aryans from their ancestors of the Fourth Race, the Atlanteans. They piously preserved the teachings, while their parent Root-Race, becoming with every generation more arrogant, owing to the acquisition of superhuman powers, were gradually approaching their end.
The Trial of the Sun Initiate
(Page 270) WE will begin with the ancient Mysteries—those received from the Atlanteans by the primitive Äryans—whose mental and intellectual state Professor Max Müller has described with such a masterly hand, yet left so incomplete withal.
He says: We have in it [ in the Rig Veda] a period of the intellectual life of man to which there is no parallel in any other part of the world. In the hymns of the Veda we see man left to himself to solve the riddle of this world. . . .He invokes the gods around him, he praises, he worships them. But still with all these gods . . . .beneath him, and above him, the early poet seems ill at rest within himself. There, too, in his own breast, he has discovered a power that is never mute when he prays, never absent when he fears and trembles. It seems to inspire his prayers and yet to listen to them; it seems to live in him, and yet to support him and all around him. The only name he can find for this mysterious power is “Brahman;” for brahman meant originally force, will, wish, and the propulsive power of creation. But this impersonal brahman too, as soon as it is named, grows into something strange and divine. It ends by being one of many gods, one of the great triad, worshipped to the present day. And still the thought within him has no real name; that power which is nothing but itself, which supports the gods, the heavens, and every living being, floats before his mind, conceived but not expressed. At last he calls it Ãtman,” for âtman, originally breath or spirit, comes to mean Self and Self alone, whether divine or human; Self, whether creating of suffering; Self, whether One or All; but always Self, independent and free. “Who has seen the first-born?” says the poet, “when he who has no bones (i.e., form) bore him that had bones? Where was the life, the blood, the Self of the world? Who went to ask this from any one who knew it?” (Rig Veda, I, 164,4.) This idea of a divine Self once expressed, everything else must acknowledge its supremacy; Self is the Lord of all things; it is the King of all things; as all the spokes of a wheel are contained in the nave and circumference, all things are contained in this Self; all selves are contained in this Self.” (Brihadâranyaka, IV. v. 15). [Chips from a German Workshop, i. 69. 70. ]
Vishvakarma and Vikarttana - (Page 271) This Self, the highest, the one, and the universal, was symbolised on the plane of mortals by the Sun, its life-giving effulgence being in its turn the emblem of the Soul—killing the terrestrial passions which have ever been an impediment to the re-union of the Unit Self (the Spirit) with the All-Self. Hence the allegorical mystery, only the broad features of which may be given here. It was enacted by the “Sons of the Fire-Mist” and of “Light.” The second Sun (the “second hypostasis” of Rabbi Drach) appeared as put on his trial, Vishvakarma, the Hierophant, cutting off seven of his beams, and replacing them with a crown of brambles, when the “Sun” became Vikarttana, shorn of his beams or rays. After that, the Sun,—enacted by a neophyte ready to be initiated—was made to descend into Pâtâla, the nether regions, on a trial of Tantalus. Coming out of it triumphant, he emerged from this region of lust and iniquity, to re-become Karmasâkshin, witness of the Karma of men, [Sûrya, the Sun, is one of the nine divinities that witness all human actions.] and arose once more triumphant in all the glory of his regeneration, as the Graha-Râjah, King of the Constellations, and was addressed as Gabhastiman, “re-possessed of his rays.”
The “fable” in the popular Pantheon of India, founded upon, and born out of the poetical mysticism of the Rig-Veda—the sayings of which were mostly all dramatised during the religious Mysteries—grew in the course of its exoteric evolution into the following allegory. It may be found now in several of the Purânas and in other Scriptures. In the Rig-Veda and its Hymns, Vishvakarma, a Mystery-God, is the Logos, the Demiurgos, one of the greatest Gods, and spoken of in two of the hymns as the highest. He is the Omnificent (Vishvakarma) called the “Great Architect of the Universe,” the
All seeing God, . . . .the father, the generator, the disposer, who gives the gods their names, and is beyond the comprehension of mortals,
as is every Mystery-God. Esoterically, He is the personification of the creative manifested Power; and mystically He is the seventh principle in man, in its collectivity. For He is the son of Bhuvana, the self-created, luminous Essence, and of the virtuous, chaste and lovely Yoga-Siddhâ, the virgin Goddess, whose name speaks for itself, since it personified Yoga-power, the “chaste mother” that creates the Adepts. In the Rig-Vaidic Hymns, Vishvakarma performs the “great sacrifice” i.e., sacrifices himself for the world; or, as the Nirukta is made to say, translated by the Orientalists:
(Page 272) Vishvakarma first of all offers up all the world in a sacrifice, and then ends by sacrificing himself
In the mystical representations of his character, Vishvakarma is often called Vittoba, and is pictured as the “Victim,” the “Man-God,” or the Avatàra crucified in space.
the true Mysteries, the real Initiations, nothing of course can be said in public:
they can be known only to those who are able to experience them. But a few hints
can be given of the great ceremonial Mysteries of Antiquity, which stood to
the public as the real Mysteries, and into which candidates were initiated with
much ceremony and display of Occult Arts. Behind these, in silence and darkness,
were the true Mysteries, as they have always existed and continue to exist.
In Egypt, as in Chaldaea and later in Greece, the Mysteries were celebrated
at stated times, and the first day was a public holiday, on which, with much
pomp, the candidates were escorted to the Great Pyramid and passed thereinto
out of sight. The second day was devoted to ceremonies of purification, at the
close of which the candidate was presented with a white robe; on the third day]
[There is a gap in H.P.B’s MS., and the paragraph in brackets supplies
what was missing.—A.B.] he was tried and examined as to his proficiency
in Occult learning. On the fourth day, after another ceremony symbolical of
purification, he was sent alone to pass through various trials, finally becoming
entranced in a subterranean crypt, in utter darkness, for two days and two nights.
In Egypt, the entranced neophyte was placed in an empty sarcophagus in the Pyramid,
where the initiatory rites took place. In India and Central Asia, he was bound
on a lathe, and when his body had become like that of one dead (entranced),
he was carried into the crypt. Then the Hierophant kept watch over him “guiding
the apparitional soul (astral body) from this world of Samsàra (or delusion)
to the nether kingdoms, from which, if successful, he had the right of
releasing seven suffering souls” (Elementaries). Clothed with his
Anandamayakosha, the body of bliss—the Srotâpanna remained there
where we have no right to follow him, and upon returning—received the
Word, with or without the “heart’s blood” of the Hierophant.
[ In Isis Unveiled, Vol.II., pp. 41, 42, a portion of this rite
is referred to. Speaking of the dogma of Atonement, it is traced to ancient
“heathendom” again. We say: “This cornerstone of a church
which had believed herself built on a firm rock for long centuries, is now excavated
by science and proved to come from the Gnostics. Professor Draper shows it as
hardly known in the days of Tertullian, and as having originated among the Gnostic
heretics’ (see Conflict Between Religion and Science, p.224) .
. . .But there are sufficient proofs to show that it originated among
them no more than did their anointed Christos and Sophia. The former they modelled
on the original of the King Messiah, the male principle of wisdom, and the latter
on the third Sephiroth, from the Chaldaean Kabalah, and even from the
Hindu Brahmâ and Sarasvati, and the Pagan Dionysius and Demeter. And here
we are on firm ground, if it were only because it is now proved that the New
Testament never appeared in its complete form, such as we find it now, till
300 years after the period of the apostles, and the Zohar and other Kabalistic
books are found to belong to the first century before our era, if not to be
far older still.
Gnostics entertained many of the Essenean ideas; and the Essenes had their greater
and minor Mysteries at least two centuries before our era. They were the Isarim
or Initiates, the descendants of the Egyptian Hierophants, in whose
country they had been settled for several centuries before they were converted
to Buddhistic monasticism by the missionaries of King Asoka, and amalgamated
later with the earliest Christians; and they existed, probably, before the old
Egyptian temples were desecrated and ruined in the incessant invasions of Persians,
Greeks and other conquering hordes. The hierophants had their atonement enacted
in the Mystery of Initiation ages before the Gnostics, or even the Essenes,
had appeared. It was known among hierophants as the Baptism of Blood, and was
considered not as an atonement for the ‘fall of man’ in Eden, but
simply as an expiation for the past, present, and future sins of ignorant, but
nevertheless polluted mankind. The hierophant had the option of either offering
his pure and sinless life as a sacrifice for his race to the gods whom he hoped
to rejoin, or an animal victim. The former depended entirely on their own will.
At the last moment of the solemn ‘new birth,’ the Initiator passed
‘the word’ to the initiated, and immediately after the latter had
a weapon placed in his right hand, and was ordered to strike. This is
the true origin of the Christian dogma of atonement.”
As Ballanche says, quoted by Ragon: “Destruction is the great God of the World, justifying therefore the philosophical conception of the Hindu Shiva. According to this immutable and sacred law, the Initiate was compelled to kill the Initiator: otherwise initiation remained incomplete . . . . It is death that generates life.” Orthodoxie maçonnique, p. 104. All that, however, was emblematic and exoteric. Weapon and killing must be understood in their allegorical sense.]
The Transmission of Light - (Page 273) Only in truth the Hierophant was never killed—neither in India nor elsewhere, the murder being simply feigned—unless the Initiator had chosen the Initiate for his successor and had decided to pass to him the last and supreme WORD, after which he had to die—only one man in a nation having the right to know that word. Many are those grand Initiates who have thus passed out of the world’s sight, disappearing.
As mysteriously from the sight of men as Moses from the top of Mount Pisgah (Nebo, oracular Wisdom), after he had laid his hands upon Joshua, who thus became “full of the spirit of wisdom;” i.e., initiated.
But he died, he was not killed. For killing, if really done, would belong to black, not to divine Magic. It is the transmission of light, rather than a transfer of life, of life spiritual and divine, and it is the shedding of Wisdom, not of blood. But the initiated inventors of theological Christianity took the allegorical language à la lettre ; and instituted a dogma, the crude, misunderstood expression of which horrifies and repels the spiritual “heathen.”
All these Hierophants and Initiates were types of the Sun and of the Creative Principle (spiritual potency) as were Vishvakarma and Vikarttana, (Page 274) from the origin of the Mysteries. Ragon, the famous Mason, gives curious details and explanations with regard to the Sun rites. He shows that the biblical Hiram, the great hero of Masonry (the “widow’s son”) a type taken from Osiris, is the Sun-God, the inventor of arts, and the “architect,” the name Hiram, meaning the elevated,” a title belonging to the Sun. Every Occultist knows how closely related to Osiris and the Pyramids are the narratives in Kings concerning Solomon, his Temple and its construction; he knows also that the whole of the Masonic rite of Initiation is based upon the Biblical allegory of the construction of that Temple, Masons conveniently forgetting, or perhaps ignoring, the fact that the latter narrative is modelled upon Egyptian and still earlier symbolisms. Ragon explains it by showing that the three companions of Hiram, the “three murderers,” typify the three last months of the year; and that Hiram stands for the Sun—from its summer solstice downwards, when it begins decreasing—the whole rite being an astronomical allegory.
During the summer solstice, the Sun provokes songs of gratitude from all that breathes; hence Hiram, who represents it, can give to whomsoever has the right to it, the sacred Word, that is to say life. When the Sun descends to the inferior signs all Nature becomes mute, and Hiram can no longer give the sacred Word to the companions, who represent the three inert months of the year. The first companion strikes Hiram feebly with a rule twenty-four inches long, symbol of the twenty-four hours which make up each diurnal revolution; it is the first distribution of time, which afer the exaltation of the mighty star, feebly assails his existence, giving him the first blow. The second companion strikes him with an iron square, symbol of the last season, figured by the intersections of two right lines, which would divide into four equal parts the Zodiacal circle, whose centre symbolises Hiram’s heart, where it touches the point of the four squares representing the four seasons; second distribution of time, which at that period strikes a heavier blow at the solar existence. The third companion strikes him mortally on his forehead with a heavy blow of his mallet, whose cylindrical form symbolises the year, the ring or circle: third distribution of time, the accomplishment of which deals the last blow to the existence of the expiring Sun. From this interpretation it has been inferred that Hiram, a founder of metals, the hero of the new legend with the title of architect, is Osiris (the Sun) of modern initiation; that Isis, his widow, is the Lodge, the emblem of the Earth (loka in Sanskrit, the world) and that Horus, son of Osiris (or of light) and the widow’s son, is the free Mason, that is to say, the Initiate who inhabits the terrestrial lodge (the child of the Widow, and of Light.) [Orthodoxie maçonnique. pp. 102-104]
And here again, our friend the Jesuits have to be mentioned, for the above rite is of their making. To give one instance of their success in throwing dust into the eyes of ordinary individuals to prevent their seeing the truths of Occultism, we will point out what they did in what is now called Freemasonry.
Masonry and the Jesuits - (Page 275) This Brotherhood does possess a considerable portion of the symbolism, formulae, and ritual of Occultism, handed down from time immemorial from the primeval Initiations. To render this Brotherhood a mere harmless negation, the Jesuits sent some of their most able emissaries into the Order, who first made the simple brethren believe that the true secret was lost with Hiram Abiff; and then induced them to put this belief into their formularies. They then invented specious but spurious higher degrees, pretending to give further light upon this lost secret, to lead the candidate on and amuse him with forms borrowed from the real thing but containing no substance, and all artfully contrived to lead the aspiring Neophyte to nowhere. And yet men of good sense and abilities, in other respects, will meet at intervals, and with solemn face, zeal and earnestness, go through the mockery of revealing “substituted secrets” instead of the real thing.
If the reader turns to a very remarkable and very useful work called The Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia, Art, “Rosicrucianism,” he will find its author, a high and learned Mason, showing what the Jesuits have done to destroy Masonry. Speaking of the period when the existence of this mysterious Brotherhood (of which many pretend to know “something” if not a good deal, and know in fact nothing) was first made known, he says:
There was a dread among the great masses of society in byegone days of the unseen—a dread, as recent events and phenomena show very clearly, not yet overcome in its entirety. Hence students of Nature and mind were forced into an obscurity not altogether unwelcome. . . .The Kabalistic reveries of a Johann Reuchlin led to the fiery action of a Luther, and the patient labours of Trittenheim produced the modern system of diplomatic cipher writing. . . . .It is very worthy of remark, that one particular century, and that in which the Rosicrucians first showed themselves, is distinguished in history as the era in which most of these efforts at throwing off the trammels of the past [Popery and Ecclesiasticism] occurred. Hence the opposition of the losing party, and their virulence against anything mysterious or unknown. They freely organised pseudo-Rosicrucian and Masonic societies in return; and these societies were instructed to irregularly entrap the weaker brethren of the True and Invisible Order, and then triumphantly betray anything they may be so inconsiderate as to communicate to the superiors of these transitory and unmeaning associations. Every wile was adopted to the authorities, fighting in self-defence against the progress of truth, to engage, by persuasion, interest or terror, such as might be cajoled into receiving the Pope as Master—when (Page 276) gained, as many converts to that faith know, but dare not own, they are treated with neglect, and left to battle of life as best they may, not even being admitted to the knowledge of such miserable aporrheta as the Romish faith considers itself entitled to withhold.
But if Masonry has been spoiled, none is able to crush the real invisible Rosicrucian and the Eastern Initiate. The symbolism of Vishvakarma and Sûrya Vikarttana has survived, where Hiram Abiff was indeed murdered, and we will now return to it. It is not simply an astronomical, but is the most solemn rite, an inheritance from the Archaic Mysteries that has crossed the ages and is used to this day. It typifies a whole drama of the Cycle of Life, of progressive incarnations, and of psychic as well as of physiological secrets, of which neither the Church nor Science knows anything, though it is this rite that has led the former to the greatest of its Christian Mysteries.
The Mystery “Sun of Initiation”
(Page 277) THE antiquity of the Secret Doctrine may be better realised when it is shown at what point of history its Mysteries had already been desecrated, by being made subservient to the personal ambition of despot-ruler and crafty priest. These profoundly philosophical and scientifically composed religious dramas, in which were enacted the grandest truths of the Occult or Spiritual Universe and the hidden lore of learning, and become subject to persecution long before the days when Plato and even Pythagoras flourished. Withal, primal revelations given to Mankind have not died with the Mysteries; they are still preserved as heirlooms for future and more spiritual generations.
It has been already stated in Isis Unveiled, [Op. cit.,i. 15.] that so far back in the days of Aristotle, the great Mysteries had already lost their primitive grandeur and solemnity. Their rites had fallen into desuetude, and they had to a great degree degenerated into mere priestly speculations and had become religious shams. It is useless to state when they first appeared in Europe and Greece, since recognised history may almost be said to begin with Aristotle, everything before him appearing to be in an inextricable chronological confusion. Suffice it to say, that in Egypt the Mysteries had been known since the days of Menes, and that the Greeks received them only when Orpheus introduced them from India. In an article “Was writing known before Pânini?” [Five Years of Theosophy, p.258. A curious question to start and to deny, when it is well-known even to the Orientalists that, to take but one case, there is Yaska, who was a predecessor of Pânini, and his work still exists; there are seventeen writers of Nirukta (glossary) known to have prescribed Yaska.] it is stated that the Pândus had acquired universal dominion and had taught the “sacrificial” Mysteries to other races as far back as 3,300 B.C. Indeed, when Orpheus, the son of Apollo or Helios, received from his father the phorminx—the seven-stringed lyre, symbolical of the sevenfold mystery (Page 278) of Initiation—these Mysteries were already hoary with age in Central. Asia and India. According to Herodotus it was Orpheus who brought them from India, and Orpheus is far anterior to Homer and Hesiod. Thus even in the days of Aristotle few were the true Adepts left in Europe and even in Egypt. The heirs of those who had been dispersed by the conquering swords of various invaders of old Egypt had been dispersed in their turn. As 8,000 or 9,000 years earlier the stream of knowledge had been slowly running down from the tablelands of Central Asia into India and towards Europe and Northern Africa, so about 500 years B.C. it had begun to flow backward to its old home and birthplace. During the two thousand subsequent years the knowledge of the existence of great Adepts nearly died out in Europe. Nevertheless, in some secret places the Mysteries were still enacted in all their primitive purity. The “Sun of Righteousness” still blazed high on the midnight sky; and, while darkness was upon the face of the profane world, there was the eternal light in the Adyta on the nights of Initiation. The true Mysteries were never made public. Eleusinia and Agrae for the multitudes; the God Ευβουλη, “of the good counsel,” the great Orphic Deity for the neophyte.
This mystery God—mistaken by our Symbologists for the Sun—who was He? Everyone who has any idea of the ancient Egyptian exoteric faith is quite aware that for the multitudes Osiris was the Sun in Heaven, “the heavenly King,” Ro-Imphab; that by the Greeks the Sun was called the “Eye of Jupiter,” as for the modern orthodox Pârsi he is “the eye of Ormuzd:” that the Sun, moreover, was addressed as the “All-seeing God”( πολυοφθαλμος ) as the “God Saviour,” and the “saving God” (Αιτιον της σωτηριας). Read the papyrus of Papheronmes at Berlin, and the stela as rendered by Mariette Bey; [La Mére d’Apis, p. 47.] and see what they say:
Glory to thee, O Sun, divine child! . . . . thy rays carry life to the pure and to those ready. . . .The Gods [the “Sons of God”] who approach thee tremble with delight and awe. . . . Thou art the first born, the Son of God, the Word. [One just initiated is called the “first-born,” and in India he becomes dwija, “twice-born,” only after his final and supreme Initiation. Every Adept is a “Son of God” and a “Son of Light” after receiving the “Word,” when he becomes the “Word” himself, after receiving the seven divine attributes or the “lyre of Apollo.”]
The Church has now seized upon these terms and sees presentments of the coming Christ in these expressions in the initiatory rites and prophetic utterances of the Pagan Oracles.
The Sun as God - (Page 279) They are nothing of the kind, for they were applied to every worthy Initiate. If the expressions that were used in hieratic writings and glyphs thousands of years before our era are now found in the laudatory hymns and prayers of Christian Churches, it is simply because they have been unblushingly appropriated by the Latin Christians, in the full hope of never being detected by posterity. Everything that could be done had been done to destroy the original Pagan manuscripts and the Church felt secure. Christianity has undeniably had her great Seers and Prophets, like every other religion; but their claims are not strengthened by denying their predecessors.
Listen to Plato:
Know then, Glaucus, that when I speak of the production of good, it is the Sun I mean. The Son has a perfect analogy with his Father.
Iamblichus calls the Sun “the image of divine intelligence or Wisdom.” Eusebius, repeating the words of Philo, calls the rising Sun (ανατολη ) the chief Angel, the most ancient, adding that the Archangel who is polyonymous (of many names) is the Verbum of Christ. The word Sol (Sun) being derived from solus, the One, or the “He alone.” and its Greek name Helios meaning the “Most High,” the emblem becomes comprehensible. Nevertheless, the Ancients made a difference between the Sun and its prototype.
Socrates saluted the rising Sun as does a true Pârsî or Zoroastrian in our own day; and Homer and Euripides, as Plato did after them several times, mention the Jupiter-Logos, the “Word” or the Sun. Nevertheless, the Christians maintain that since the oracle consulted on the God Iao answered: “It is the Sun,” therefore
The Jehovah of the Jews was well known to the Pagans and Greeks;[See De Mirville, iv.15]
and “Iao is our Jehovah.” The first part of the proposition has nothing, it seems to do with the second part, and least of all can the conclusion be regarded as correct. But if the Christians are so anxious to prove the identity, Occultists have nothing against it. Only, in such case, Jehovah is also Bacchus. It is very strange that the people of civilised Christendom should until now hold on so desperately to the skirts of the idolatrous Jews—Sabaeans and Sun worshippers as they were, [ II. Kings, xxiii, 4-13.] like the rabble of Chaldaea—and that they should fail to see that the later Jehovah is but a Jewish development of the Ja-va, or the (Page 280) Iao, of the Phoenicians; that this name, in short, was the secret name of a Mystery-God, one of the many Kabiri. “Highest God” as He was for one little nation, he never was so regarded by the Initiates who conducted the Mysteries; for them he was but a Planetary Spirit attached to the visible Sun; and the visible Sun is only the central Star, not the central spiritual Sun.
And the Angel of the Lord said unto him [Manoah] “Why askest thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret.” [Judges, xiii, 18. Samson, Manoah’s son, was an Initiate of that “Mystery” Lord, Ja-va: he was consecrated before his birth to become a “Nazarite” (a chela), an Adept. His sin with Delilah, and the cropping of his long hair that “no razor was to touch” shows how well he kept his sacred vow. The allegory of Samson proves the Esotericism of the Bible, as also the character of the “Mystery Gods” of the Jews. True, Môvers gives a definition of the Phoenician idea of the ideal sunlight as a spiritual influence issuing from the highest God, Iao, “the light conceivable only by intellect—the physical and spiritual Principle of all things: out of which the soul emanates.” It was the male Essence or Wisdom, while the primitive matter or Chaos was the female. Thus the first two principles, co-eternal and infinite, were already with the primitive Phoenicians, spirit and matter. But this is the echo of Jewish thought, not the opinion of Pagan Philosophers.]
However this may be, the identity of the Jehovah of Mount Sinai with the God Bacchus is hardly disputable, and he is surely—as already shown in Isis Unveiled—Dionysos. [See Isis Unveiled. ii. 526] Wherever Bacchus was worshipped there was a tradition of Nyssa, [Beth-San or Scythopolis in Palestine had that designation: so had a spot on Mount Parnassus. But Diodorus declares that Nyssa was between Phoenicia and Egypt: Euripides states that Dionysos came to Greece from India: and Diodorus adds his testimony: “Osiris was brought up in Nyssa, in Arabia the Happy: he was the son of Zeus, and was named from his father (nominative Zeus, genitive Dios) and the place Dio-Nysos”—the Zeus or Jove of Nyssa. This identity of name or title is very significant. In Greece Dionysos was second only to Zeus, and Pindar says: “So Father Zeus governs all things, and Bacchus he governs also.”] and a cave where he was reared. Outside Greece, Bacchus was the all-powerful “Zagreus, the highest of Gods,” in whose service was Orpheus, the founder of the Mysteries. Now, unless it be conceded that Moses was an initiated Priest, an Adept, whose actions are all narrated allegorically, then it must be admitted that he personally, together with his hosts of Israelites, worshipped Bacchus.
And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovah Nissi [or, Iao-nisi, or again Dionisi]. [Ex., xvii. 15.]
To strengthen the statement we have further to remember that the place where Osiris, the Egyptian Zagreus or Bacchus, was born, was Mount Sinai, which is called by the Egyptians Mount Nissa. The brazen serpent was a nis, , and the month of the Jewish Passover is Nisan.
The Objects of the Mysteries
(Page 281) THE earliest Mysteries recorded in history are those of Samothrace. After the distribution of pure Fire, a new life began. This was the new birth of the Initiate, after which, like the Brâhmans of old in India, he became a dwija—a “twice born,”
Initiated into that which may be rightly called the most blessed of all Mysteries . . . being ourselves pure,[Phaedrus, Cary’s translation, p.326.]
says Plato. Diodorus Siculus, Herodotus and Sanchoniathon the Phoenician—the oldest of Historians—say that these Mysteries originated in the night of time, thousands of years probably before the historical period. Iamblichus informs us that Pythagoras
Was initiated in all the Mysteries of Byblus and Tyre, in the sacred operations of the Syrians, and in the Mysteries of the Phœnicians. [Life of Pythagoras, p.297. “Since Pythagoras, “he adds,” “also spent two and twenty years in the adyta of the temples in Egypt, associated with the Magians in Babylon, and was instructed by them in their venerable knowledge, it is not at all wonderful that he was skilled in Magic or Theurgy, and was therefore able to perform things which surpass merely human power, and which appear to be perfectly incredible to the vulgar.” (p.298).]
As was said in Isis Unveiled:
When men like Pythagoras, Plato and Iamblichus, renowned for their severe morality, took part in the mysteries and spoke of them with veneration, it ill behoves our modern critics to judge them [and their Initiates] upon their merely external aspect.
Yet this is what has been done until now, especially by the Christian Fathers. Clement Alexandrinus stigmatises the Mysteries as “indecent and diabolical” though his words, showing that the Eleusinian Mysteries were identical with, and even, as he would allege, borrowed from, those of the Jews, are quoted elsewhere in this work. The Mysteries were composed of two parts, of which the Lesser were performed at Agrae, (Page 282) and the Greater at Eleusis, and Clement had been himself initiated. But the Katharsis, or trials of purification, have ever been misunderstood. Iamblichus explains the worst; and his explanation ought to be perfectly satisfactory, at any rate for every unprejudiced mind.
Exhibitions of this kind in the Mysteries were designed to free us from licentious passions, by gratifying the sight, and at the same time vanquishing all evil thought, through the awful sanctity with which these rites were accompanied.
Dr. Warburton remarks:
The wisest and best men in the Pagan world are unanimous in this, that the Mysteries were instituted pure, and proposed the noblest ends by the worthiest means.
Although persons of both sexes and all classes were allowed to take part in the Mysteries, and a participation in them was even obligatory, very few indeed attained the higher and final Initiation in these celebrated rites. The gradation of the Mysteries is given us by Proclus in the fourth book of his Theology of Plato.
The perfective rite, precedes in order the initiation Telete, Muesis, and the initiation , Epopteia, or the final apocalypse [revelation].
Theon of Smyrna, in Mathematica, also divides the mystic rites into five parts:
The first of which is the previous purification; for neither are the Mysteries communicated to all who are willing to receive them; but there are certain persons who are prevented by the voice of the crier. . . . . . since it is necessary that such as are not expelled from the mysteries should first be refined by certain purifications; but after purification the reception of the sacred rites succeeds. The third part is denominated epopteia or reception. And the fourth, which is the end and design of the revelation, is (the investiture) the binding of the head and fixing of the crowns [This expression must not be understood simply literally: for, as in the initiation of certain Brotherhoods, it has a secret meaning that we have just explained; it was hinted at by Pythagoras, when he describes his feelings after the Initiation, and says that he was crowned by the Gods in whose presence he had drunk “the waters of life”—in the Hindu Mysteries there was the fount of life, and soma, the sacred drink.]. . . whether after this he [the initiated person] becomes a torchbearer, or an hierophant of the Mysteries, or sustains some other part of the sacerdotal office. But the fifth, which is produced from all these, is friendship and interior communion with God. And this was the last and most awful of all the Mysteries. [Eleusinian and Bacchic Mysteries, T.Taylor, p.46, 47.]
The chief objects of the Mysteries, represented as diabolical by the Christian Fathers and ridiculed by modern writers, were instituted with the highest and most moral purpose in view.
Mysteries and Theophany (Page 283) There is no need to repeat here that which has been already described in Isis Unveiled [ii. III, 113] that whether through temple Initiation or the private study of Theurgy, every student obtained the proof of the immortality of his Spirit, and the survival of his Soul. What the last epopteia was is alluded to by Plato in Phaedrus:
Being initiated in those Mysteries which it is lawful to call the most blessed of all mysteries. . . . we were freed from the molestations of evils, which otherwise await us in a future period of time. Likewise in consequence of this divine initiation, we become spectators of entire, simple, immovable, and blessed visions, resident in a pure light. [Eleusinian and Bacchic Mysteries, p.63.]
This veiled confession shows that the Initiates enjoyed Theophany—saw visions of Gods and of real immortal spirits. As Taylor correctly infers:
The most sublime part of the epopteia or final revealing, consisted in beholding the Gods [the high Planetary Spirits] themselves, invested with a resplendent light. [Op.cit, p.65]
The statement of Proclus upon the subject is unequivocal:
In all the Initiations and Mysteries, the Gods exhibit many forms of themselves, and appear in a variety of shapes; and sometimes indeed a formless light of themselves if held forth to the view; sometimes this light is according to a human form and sometimes it proceeds into a different shape. [Quoted by Taylor. p.66.]
Again we have
Whatever is on earth is the resemblance and shadow of something that is in the sphere, while that resplendent thing [the prototype of the Soul-Spirit] remaineth in unchangeable condition, it is well also with its shadow. When that resplendent one removeth far from its shadow life removeth [from the latter] to a distance. Again that light is the shadow of something more resplendent than itself. [Verses 35-38]
Thus speaks the Desatir, in the Book of Shet (the prophet Zirtusht), thereby showing the identity of its Esoteric doctrines with those of the Greek Philosophers.
The second statement of Plato confirms the view that the Mysteries of the Ancients were identical with the Initiations practised even now among the Buddhist and the Hindu Adepts. The higher (Page 284) visions, the most truthful, were produced through a regular discipline of gradual Initiations, and the development of psychical powers. In Europe and Egypt the Mystæ were brought into close union with those whom Proclus calls “mystical natures,” resplendent Gods,” because, as Plato says:
[We] were ourselves pure and immaculate, being liberated from this surrounding vestment, which we denominate body, and to which we are now bound like an oyster to its shell.[Phaedrus, 64, quoted by Taylor, p.64.]
As to the East,
The doctrine of planetary and terrestrial Pitris was revealed entirely in ancient India, as well as now, only at the last moment of initiation, and to the adepts of superior degrees. [Isis Unveiled, ii, 114.]
The word Pitris may now be explained and something else added. In India the chela of the third degree of Inititation has two Gurus: One, the living Adept; the other the disembodied and glorified Mahâtmâ, Who remains the adviser or instructor or even the high Adepts. Few are the accepted chelas who even see their living Master, their Guru, till the day and hour of their final and for ever binding vow. It is this that was meant in Isis Unveiled, when it was stated that few of the fakirs (the word chela being unknown to Europe and America in those days) however
Pure, and honest, and self-devoted, have yet ever seen the astral form of a purely human pitar (an ancestor or father), otherwise than at the solemn moment of their first and last initiation. It is in the presence of his instructor, the Guru, and just before the vatou-fakir [the just initiated chela] is despatched into the world of the living, with his seven-knotted bamboo wand for all protection, that he is suddenly placed face to face with the unknown PRESENCE [of his Pitar or Father, the glorified invisible Master, or disembodied Mahâtmâ]. He sees it, and falls prostrate at the feet of the evanescent form, but is not entrusted with the great secret of its evocation, for it is the supreme mystery of the holy syllable.
The Initiate, says Éliphas Lévi, knows; therefore, “he dares all and keeps silent.” Says the great French Kabalist:
You may see him often sad, never discouraged or desperate; often poor, never humbled or wretched; often persecuted, never cowed down or vanquished. For he remembers the widowhood and the murder of Orpheus, the exile and solitary death of Moses, the martyrdom of the prophets, the tortures of Apollonius, the Cross of the Savior. He knows in what forlorn state died Agrippa, whose memory is slandered to this day; he knows the trials that broke down the great Paracelsus, and all that Raymond Lully had to suffer before he arrived at a bloody death.
The Mysteries and Masonry - (Page 285) He remembers Swedenborg having to feign insanity, and losing even his reason before his knowledge was forgiven to him; St. Martin, who had to hide himself all life; Cagliostro, who died forsaken in the cells of the inquisition; [This is false, and the Abbé Constant (Éliphas Lévy) knew it was so. Why did he promulgate the untruth?] Cazotte, who perished on the guillotine. Successor of so many victims, he dares, nevertheless, but understands the more the necessity to keep silent. [Dogme de la Haute Magie, i. 219. 220.]
Masonry—not the political institution known as the Scotch Lodge, but real Masonry, some rites of which are still preserved in the Grand Orient of France, and that Elias Ashmole, a celebrated English Occult Philospher of the XVIIth century, tried in vain to remodel, after the manner of the Indian and Egyptian Mysteries—Masonry rests, according to Ragon, the great authority upon the subject, upon three fundamental degrees: the triple duty of a Mason is to study whence he comes, what he is, and whither he goes; the study that is, of God, of himself, and of the future transformation. [Orthodoxie Maconnique, p.99.] Masonic Initiation was modelled on that in the lesser mysteries. The third degree was one used in both Egypt and India from time immemorial, and the remembrance of it lingers to this day in every Lodge, under the name of the death and resurrection of Hiram Abiff, the “Widow’s Son.” In Egypt the latter was called “Osiris;” in India “Loka-chakshu” (Eye of the World), and “Dinakara” (day-maker) or the Sun—and the rite itself was everywhere named the “gate of death.” The coffin, or sarcophagus, of Osiris, killed by Typhon, was brought in and placed in the middle of the Hall of the Dead, with the Initiates all around it and the candidate near by. The latter was asked whether he had participated in the murder, and notwithstanding his denial, and after sundry and very hard trials, the Initiator feigned to strike him on the head with a hatchet; he was thrown down, swathed in bandages like a mummy, and wept over. Then came lightening and thunder, the supposed corpse was surrounded with fire, and was finally raised.
Ragon speaks of a rumour that charged the Emperor Commodus—when he was at one time enacting the part of the Initiator—with having played this part in the initiatory drama so seriously that he actually killed the postulant when dealing him the blow with the hatchet. This shows that the lesser Mysteries had not quite died out in the second century A.D.
(Page 286) The Mysteries were carried into South and Central America, Northern Mexico and Peru by the Atlanteans in those days when
A pedestrian from the North [of what was once upon a time also India] might have reached—hardly wetting his feet—the Alaskan Peninsula, through Manchooria, across the future Gulf of Tartary, the Kurile and Aleutian Islands; while another traveller, furnished with a canoe and starting from the South, could have walked over from Siam, crossed the Polynesian Islands and trudged into any part of the continent of South America.[Five Years of Theosophy. p.214.]
They continued to exist down to the day of the Spanish invaders. These destroyed the Mexican and Peruvian records, but were prevented from laying their desecrating hands upon the many Pyramids—the lodges of an ancient Initiation—whose ruins are scattered over Puente Nacional, Cholula, and Teotihuacan. The ruins of Palenque of Ococimgo in Chiapas, and others in Central America are known to all. If the pyramids and temples of Guiengola and Mitla ever betray their secrets, the present Doctrine will then be shown to have been a forerunner of the grandest truths in Nature. Meanwhile they have all a claim to be called Mitla, “the place of sadness” and “the abode of the (desecrated) dead.”
Traces of the Mysteries
(Page 287) SAYS the Royal Masonic Cyclopædia, art, “Sun:”
In all times, the Sun has necessarily played an important part as a symbol, and especially in Freemasonry. The W.M. represents the rising sun, the J.W. the sun at the meridian, and the S.W. the setting sun. In the Druidical rites, the Arch-Druid represents the sun, and was aided by two other officers, one representing the Moon in the West, and the other the Sun at the South in its meridian. It is quite unnecessary to enter into any lengthened discussion on this symbol.
It is the more “unnecessary” since J.M. Ragon has discussed it very fully, as one may find at the end of Section XXIX., where part of his explanations have been quoted. Freemasonry derived her rights from the East, as we have said. And if it be true to say of the modern Rosicrucians that “they are invested with a knowledge of chaos, not perhaps a very desirable acquisition,” the remark is still more true when applied to all the other branches of Masonry, since the knowledge of their members about the full signification of their symbol is nil. Dozens of hypotheses are resorted to, one more unlikely than the other, as to the “Round Towers” of Ireland; one fact is enough to show the ignorance of the Masons, namely, that, according to the Royal Masonic Encylopædia, the idea that they were connected with Masonic Initiation, may be at once dismissed as unworthy of notice. The “Towers,” which are found throughout the East in Asia were connected with the Mystery-Initiations, namely, with the Vishvakarma and the Vikarttana rites. The candidates for Initiation were placed in them for three days and three nights, whenever there was no temple with a subterranean crypt close at hand. These round towers were built for no other purposes. Discredited as are all such monuments of Pagan origin by the Christian clergy, who thus “soil their own nest,” they are still the living and indestructible relics of the Wisdom of old. (Page 288) Nothing exists in this objective and illusive world of ours that cannot be made to serve two purposes—a good and a bad one. Thus in later ages, the Initiates of the Left Path and the anthropomorphists took in hand most of those venerable ruins, then silent and deserted by their first wise inmates, and turned them indeed into phallic monuments. But this was a deliberate, wilful, and vicious misinterpretation of their real meaning, a deflection from their first use. The Sun—though ever, even for the multitudes, μονος ουρανου φεος, “the only and one King and God in heaven, and the Ευβουλη, “the God of Good Counsel” of Orpheus—had in every exoteric popular religion a dual aspect which was anthropomorphised by the profane. Thus the Sun was Osiris-Typhon, Ormuzd-Ahriman, Bel-Jupiter and Baal, the life-giving and the death-giving luminary. And thus one and the same monolith, pillar, pyramid, tower or temple, originally built to glorify the first principle or aspect, might become in time an idol-fane, or worse, a phallic emblem in its crude and brutal form. The Lingam of the Hindus has a spiritual and highly philosophical meaning, while the missionaries see in it but an “indecent emblem;” it has just the meaning which is to be found in all those baalim, chammanim, and the bamoth with the pillars of unhewn stone of the Bible, set up for the glorification of the male Jehovah. But this does not alter the fact that the pureia of the Greeks, the nur-hags of Sardinia, the teocalli of Mexico etc., were all in the beginning of the same character as the “Round Towers” of Ireland. They were sacred places of Initiation.
In 1877, the writer, quoting the authority and opinions of some most eminent scholars, ventured to assert that there was a great difference between the terms Chrestos and Christos, a difference having a profound and Esoteric meaning. Also that while Christos means “to live” and “to be born into a new life,” Chrestos, in “Initiation” phraseology, signified the death of the inner, lower, or personal nature in man; thus is given the key to the Bràhmanical title, the twice-born; and finally,
There were Chrestians long before the era of Christianity, and the Essenes belonged to them. [In I Peter. ii. 3, Jesus is called “the Lord Chrestos.”]
For this epithets sufficiently opprobrious to characterise the writer could hardly be found. And yet then as well as now, the author never attempted a statement of such a serious nature without showing as many learned authorities for it as could be mustered.
Christos and Chrestos - (Page 289) Thus on the next page it was said:
Lepsius shows that the word Nofre means Chrestos, “good,” and that one of the titles of Osiris, “Onnofre,” must be translated “the goodness of God made manifest.” “The worship of Christ was not universal at this early date,” explains Mackenzie, “by which I mean that Christolatry had not been introduced; but the worship of Chrestos—the Good Principle—had preceded it by many centuries, and even survived the general adoption of Christianity, as shown on monuments still in existence . . . .Again we have an inscription which is pre-Christian on an epitaphial tablet, (Spon. Misc. Erud., Ant., x xviii. 2) . .., and de Rossi (Roma Sotteranea, tome i., tav. xxi.) gives us another example from the catacombs—“ Ælia Chreste, in Pace.” [Isis Unveiled. ii. 323.]
the writer is able to add to all those testimonies the corroboration of an erudite
author, who proves whatever he undertakes to show on the authority of geometrical
demonstration. There is a most curious passage with remarks and explanations
in the Source of Measures, whose author has probably never heard of the
“Mystery-God” Visvakarma of the early Âryans. Treating on
the difference between the terms Chrest and Christ, he ends by saying that:
There were two Messiahs: one who went down into the pit for the salvation of this world; this was the Sun shorn of his golden rays, and crowned with blackened ones (symbolising this loss), as the thorns: the other was the triumphant Messiah mounting up to the summit of the arch of heaven, and personified as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. In both instances he had the cross; once in humiliation and once holding it in his control as the law of creation, He being Jehovah.
And then the author proceeds to give “the fact” that “there were two Messiahs,” etc., as quoted above. And this—leaving the divine and mystic character and claim for Jesus entirely independent of this event of His mortal life—shows Him beyond any doubt, as an Initiate of the Egyptian Mysteries, where the same rite of Death and of spiritual Resurrection for the neophyte, or the suffering Chrestos on his trial and new birth by Regeneration, was enacted—for this was a universally adopted rite.
The “pit” into which the Eastern Initiate was made to descend was, as shown before, Pâtâla, one of the seven regions of the nether world, over which rules Vâsuki, the great “snake God.” This pit, Pâtâla, has (Page 290) in the Eastern Symbolism precisely the same manifold meaning as is found by Mr. Ralston Skinner in the Hebrew word shiac in its application to the case in hand. For it was the synonym of Scorpio—Pâtâla’s depths being “impregnated with the brightness of the new Sun”—represented by the “newly born” into the glory; and Pâtâla was and is in a sense, “a pit, a grave, the place of death, and the door of Hades or Sheol” —as, the partially exoteric Initiations in India, the candidate had to pass through the matrix of the heifer before proceeding to Pâtâla. In its non-mystic sense it is the Antipodes—America being referred to in India as Pâtâla. But in its symbolism it meant all that, and much more. The fact alone that Vâsuki, the ruling Deity of Pâtâla, is represented in the Hindu Pantheon as the great Nâga (Serpent) —who was used by the Gods and Asuras as a rope round the mountain Mandara, at the churning of the ocean for Amrita, the water of immortality—connects him directly with Initiation
For he is Shesha Nâga also, serving as a couch for Vishnu, and upholding the seven worlds; and he is also Ananta, “the endless,” and the symbol of eternity—hence the “God of Secret Wisdom,” degraded by the Church to the rôle of the tempting Serpent, of Satan. That what is now said is correct may be verified by the evidence of even the exoteric rendering of the attributes of various Gods and Sages both in the Hindu and the Buddhist Pantheons. Two instances will suffice to show how little our best and most erudite Orientalists are capable of dealing correctly and fairly with the symbolism of Eastern nations, while remaining ignorant of the corresponding points to be found only in Occultism and the Secret Doctrine.
(1) The learned Orientalist and Tibetan traveller, Professor Emil Schlagintweit, mentions in one of his works on Tibet, a national legend to the effect that
Nâgârjuna [a “mythological” personage “without any real existence,” the learned German scholar thinks] received the book Paramârtha, or according to others, the book Avatamsaka, from the Nâgas, fabulous creatures of the nature of serpents, who occupy a place among the beings superior to man, and are regarded as protectors of the law of Buddha. To these spiritual beings Shâkyamuni is said to have taught a more philosophical religious system than to men, who were not sufficiently advanced to understand it at the time of his appearance. [Buddhism in Tibet, p.31.]
The Symbolism of Narada - (Page 291) Nor are men sufficiently advanced for it now; for “the more philosophical religious system” is the Secret Doctrine, the Occult Eastern Philosophy, which is the corner-stone of all sciences rejected by the unwise builders even at this day, and more today perhaps than ever before, in the great conceit of our age. The allegory means simply that Nâgârjuna having been initiated by the “Serpents”—the Adepts, “the wise ones”—and driven out from India by the Brâhmans, who dreaded to have their Mysteries and sacerdotal Science divulged (the real cause of their hatred of Buddhism), went away to China and Tibet, where he initiated many into the truths of the hidden Mysteries taught by Gautama Buddha.
(2) The hidden symbolism of Nârada—the great Rishi and the author of some of the Rig-Vaidic hymns, who incarnated again later on during Krishna’s time—has never been understood. Yet, in connection with the Occult Sciences, Nârada, the son of Brahmâ, is one of the most prominent characters; he is directly connected in his first incarnation with the “Builders”—hence with the seven “Rectors” of the Christian Church, who “helped God in the work of creation.” This grand personification is hardly noticed by our Orientalists, who refer only to that which he is alleged to have said of Pâtâla, namely, “that it is a place of sexual and sensual gratifications.” This is thought to be amusing, and the reflection is suggested that Nârada, no doubt, “found the place delightful.” Yet this sentence simply shows him to have been an Initiate, connected directly with the Mysteries, and walking, as all the other neophytes, before and after him, had to walk, in “the pit among the thorns” in the “sacrificial Chrest condition,” as the suffering victim made to descend thereinto—a mystery, truly!
Nârada is one of the seven Rishis, the “mind-born sons” of Brahmâ. The fact of his having been during his incarnation a high Initiate—he, like Orpheus, being the founder of the Mysteries—is corroborated, and made evident by his history. The Mahâbhârata states that Nârada, having frustrated the scheme formed for peopling the universe, in order to remain true to his vow of chastity, was cursed by Daksha, and sentenced to be born once more. Again, when born during Krishna’s time, he is accused of calling his father Brahmâ “a false teacher,” because the latter advised him to get married, and he refused to do so. This shows him to have been an Initiate, going against the orthodox worship and religion. It is curious to find this Rishi and leader among the “Builders” and the “Heavenly Host” as (Page 292) the prototype of the Christian “leader” of the same “Host”—the Archangel Mikael. Both are the male “Virgins,” and both are the only ones among their respective “Hosts” who refuse to create. Nârada is said to have dissuaded the Hari-ashvas, the five thousand sons of Daksha, begotten by him for the purpose of peopling the Earth, from producing offspring. Since then the Hari-ashvas have “dispersed themselves through the regions, and have never returned.” The Initiates are, perhaps, the incarnations of these Hari-ashvas?
It was on the seventh day, the third of his ultimate trial, that the neophyte arose, a regenerated man, who, having passed through his second spiritual birth, returned to earth a glorified and triumphant conqueror of Death, a Hierophant.
An Eastern neophyte in his Chrest condition may be seen in a certain engraving in Moor’s Hindu Pantheon, whose author mistook another form of the crucified Sun or Vishnu, Vittoba, for Krishna, and calls it “Krishna crucified in space.” The engraving is also given in Dr. Lundy’s Monumental Christianity, in which work the reverend author has collected as many proofs as his ponderous volume could hold of “Christian symbols before Christianity,” as he expresses it. Thus he shows us Krishna and Apollo as good shepherds, Krishna holding the cruciform Conch and the Chakra, and Krishna “crucified in Space,” as he calls it. Of this figure it may be truly said, as the author says of it himself:
This representation I believe to be anterior to Christianity . . . . It looks like a Christian crucifix in many respects . . . . The drawing, the attitude, the nail marks in hands and feet, indicate a Christian origin, while the Parthian coronet of seven points, the absence of the wood, and of the usual inscription, and the rays of glory above, would seem to point to some other than a Christian origin. Can it be the victim-man, or the priest and victim both in one, of the Hindu Mythology, who offered himself a sacrifice before the worlds were?
It is surely so.
Can it be Plato’s Second God who impressed himself on the universe in the form of the cross? Or is it his divine man, who would be scourged, tormented, fettered, have his eyes burnt out; and lastly . . .would be crucified?
It is all that and much more; archaic religious Philosophy was universal, and its Mysteries are as old as man. It is the eternal symbol of the personified Sun—astronomically purified—in its mystic meaning regenerated, and symbolised by all the Initiates in memory of a sinless Humanity when all were “Sons of God.”
Egyptian Initiation - (Page 293) Now, mankind has become the “Son of Evil” truly. Does all this take anything away from the dignity of Christ as an ideal, or of Jesus as a divine man? Not at all. On the contrary, made to stand alone, glorified above all other “Sons of God,” He can only forment evil feelings in all those many millioned nations who do not believe in the Christian system, provoking their hatred and leading to iniquitous wars and strifes. If, on the other hand, we place Him among a long series of “Sons of God” and Sons of divine Light, every man may then be left to choose for himself, among those many ideals, which he will choose as a God to call to his help, and worship on earth as in Heaven.
Many among those called “Saviours” were “good shepherds,” as was Krishna for one, and all of them are said to have “crushed the serpent’s head”—in other words to have conquered their sensual nature and to have mastered divine and Occult Wisdom. Apollo killed Python, a fact which exonerates him from the charge of being himself the great dragon, Satan: Krishna slew the snake Kalinâga, the Black Serpent; and the Scandinavian Thor bruised the head of the symbolical reptile with his crucifixion mace.
In Egypt every city of importance was separated from its burial-place by a sacred lake. The same ceremony of judgement, as is described in The Book of the Dead—“that precious and mysterious book” (Bunsen)—as taking place in the world of Spirit, took place on earth during the burial of the mummy. Forty-two judges or assessors assembled on the shore and judged the departed “Soul” according to its actions when in the body. After that the priests returned within the sacred precincts and instructed the neophytes upon the probable fate of the Soul, and the solemn drama that was then taking place in the invisible realm whither the Soul had fled. The immortality of the Spirit was strongly inculcated on the neophytes by the Al-om-jalt—the name of the highest Egyptian Hierophant. In the Crata Nepoa—the priestly Mysteries in Egypt—the following are described as four out of the seven degrees of Initiation.
After a preliminary trial at Thebes, where the neophyte had to pass through many probations, called the “Twelve Tortures,” he was commanded, in order that he might come out triumphant, to govern his passions and never lose for a moment the idea of his inner God or seventh Principle. Then, as a symbol of the wanderings of the unpurified Soul, he had to ascend several ladders and wander in darkness in a cave with many doors, all of which were locked. Having (Page 294) overcome all, he received the degree of Pastophoris, after which he became, in the second and third degrees, the Neocoris and Melancphoris. Brought into a vast subterranean chamber, thickly furnished with mummies lying in state, he was placed in presence of the coffin which contained the mutilated body of Osiris. This was the hall called the “Gates of Death,” whence the verse in Job:
Have the gates of Death been opened to thee,
Hast thou seen the doors of the shadow of death?
Thus asks the “Lord,” the Hierophant, the Al-om-jah, the Initiator of Job, alluding to this third degree of Initiation. For the Book of Job is the poem of Initiation par excellence.
When the neophyte had conquered the terrors of this trial, he was conducted to the “Hall of Spirits,” to be judged by them. Among the rules in which he was instructed, he was commanded:
Never to either desire or seek revenge; to be always ready to help a brother in danger, even unto the risk of his own life; to bury every dead body; to honour his parents above all; to respect old age, and protect those weaker than himself; and finally, to ever bear in mind the hour of death, and that of resurrection in a new and imperishable body.
Purity and chastity were highly recommended, and adultery was threatened with death. Thus the Egyptian neophyte was made a Kristophoros. In this degree the mystery-name of IAO was communicated to him.
Let the reader compare the above sublime precepts with the precepts of Buddha, and the noble commandments in the “Rule of Life” for the ascetics of India, and he will understand the unity of the Secret Doctrine everywhere.
It is impossible to deny the presence of a sexual element in many religious symbols, but this fact is not in the least open to censure, once it becomes generally known that—in the religious traditions of every country—man was not born in the first “human” race from father and mother. From the bright “mind-born Sons of Brahmâ,” the Rishis, and from Adam Kadmon with his Emanations, the Sephiroth, down to the “parentless,” the Anupâdaka, or the Dhyâni Buddhas, from whom sprang the Bodhisattvas and Manushi-Buddhas, the earthly Initiates—men—the first race of men was with every nation held as being born without father or mother. Man, the “Manushi Buddha,” the Manu, the “Enosh,” son of Seth, or the “Son of Man” as he is called—is born in the present way only as the consequence, the unavoidable fatality, of the law of natural evolution.
The Self-Sacrificing Victim - (Page 295) Mankind—having reached the last limit, and that turning point where its spiritual nature had to make room for mere physical organization—had to “fall into matter” and generation. But man’s evolution and involution are cyclic. He will end as he began. Of course to our grossly material minds even the sublime symbolism of Kosmos conceived in the matrix of Space after the divine Unit had entered into and fructified it with Its holy fiat, will no doubt suggest materiality. Not so with primitive mankind. The initiatory rite in the Mysteries of the self-sacrificing Victim that dies a spiritual death to save the world from destruction—really from depopulation—was established during the Fourth Race, to commemorate an event, which, physiologically, has now become the Mystery of Mysteries among the world-problems. In the Jewish script it is Cain and the female Abel who are the sacrificed and sacrificing couple—both immolating themselves (as permutations of Adam and Eve, or the dual Jehovah) and shedding their blood “of separation and union,” for the sake of and to save mankind by inaugurating a new physiological race. Later still, when the neophyte, as already mentioned, in order to be re-born once more into his lost spiritual state, had to pass through the entrails (the womb) of a virgin heifer [The Aryans replaced the living cow by one made of gold, silver or any other metal, and the rite is preserved to this day, when one desires to become a Brâhman, a twice-born, in India.] killed at the moment of the rite, it involved again a mystery and one as great, for it referred to the process of birth, or rather the first entrance of man on to this earth, through Vâch—“the melodious cow who milks forth sustenance and water”—and who is the female Logos. It had also reference to the same self-sacrifice of the “divine Hermaphrodite”—of the third Root-Race—the transformation of Humanity into truly physical men, after the loss of spiritual potency. When, the fruit of evil having been tested along with the fruit of good, there was as a result the gradual atrophy of spirituality and a strengthening of the materiality in man, then he was doomed to be born thenceforth through the present process. This is the Mystery of the Hermaphrodite, which the Ancients kept so secret and veiled. It was neither the absence of moral feeling, nor the presence of gross sensuality in them that made them imagine their Deities under a dual aspect; but rather their knowledge of the mysteries and processes of primitive Nature. The Science of Physiology was better known to them than it is to us now. It is in this (Page 296) that lies buried the key to the Symbolism of old, the true focus of national thought, and the strange dual-sexed images of nearly every God and Goddess in both pagan and monotheistic Pantheons.
Says Sir William Drummond in Œdipus Judaïcus:
The truths of science were the arcana of the priests because these truths were the foundations of religion.
But why should the missionaries so cruelly twit the Vaishnavas and Krishna worshippers for the supposed grossly indecent meaning of their symbols, since it is made clear beyond the slightest doubt, and by the most unprejudiced writers, that Chrestos in the pit—whether the pit to be taken as meaning the grave or hell—had likewise a sexual element in it, from the very origin of the symbol.
This fact is no longer denied today. The “Brothers of the Rosy Cross of the Middle Ages were as good Christians as any to be found in Europe, nevertheless, all their rites were based on symbols whose meaning was pre-eminently phallic and sexual. Their biographer, Hargrave Jennings, the best modern authority on Rosicrucianism, speaking of this mystic Brotherhood, describes how
The tortures and the sacrifice of Calvary, the Passion of the Cross, were, in their [the Rose-Croix’s] glorious blessed magic and triumph, the protest and appeal.
Protest—by whom? The answer is, the protest of the crucified Rose, the greatest and the most unveiled of all sexual symbols—the Yoni and Lingam, the “victim” and the “murderer,” the female and male principles in Nature. Open the last work of that author, Phallicism, and see in what glowing terms he describes the sexual symbolism in that which is most sacred to the Christian:
The flowing blood streamed from the crown, or the piercing circlet of the thorns of Hell. The Rose is feminine. Its lustrous carmine petals are guarded with thorns. The Rose is the most beautiful of flowers. The Rose is the Queen of God’s Garden (Mary, the Virgin). It is not the Rose alone which is the magical idea, or truth. But it is the “crucified rose,” or the “martyred rose” (by the grand mystic apocalyptic figure) which is the talisman, the standard, the object of adoration of all the “Sons of Wisdom” or the true Rosicrucians. [Op. cit.,p. 141.]
Not of all the “Sons of Wisdom,” by any means, not even of the true Rosicrucian. For the latter would never put in such sickening relievo, in such a purely sensual and terrestrial, not to say animal light, the grandest, the noblest of Nature’s symbols.
Orpheus - (Page 297) To the Rosicrucian, the “Rose” was the symbol of Nature, of the ever prolific and virgin Earth, or Isis, the mother and nourisher of man, considered as feminine and represented as a virgin woman by the Egyptian Initiates. Like every other personification of Nature and the Earth she is the sister and wife of Osiris, as the two characters answer to the personified symbol of the Earth, both she and the Sun being the progeny of the same mysterious Father, because the Earth is fecundated by the Sun—according to the earliest Mysticism—by divine insufflation. It was the pure ideal of mystic Nature that was personified in the “World Virgins,” the “Celestial Maidens,” and later on by the human Virgin, Mary, the Mother of the Saviour, the Salvator Mundi now chosen by the Christian World. And it was the character of the Jewish maiden that was adopted by Theology to archaic Symbolism, [ In Ragon’s Orthodoxie Maconnique p.105, note, we find the following statement—borrowed from Albumazar the Arabian, probably: “The Virgin of the Magi and Chaldæans. The Chaldæan sphere [globe] showed in its heavens a newly-born babe, called Christ and Jesus; it was placed in the arms of the Celestial Virgin. It was to this Virgin that Eratosthenes, the Alexandrian Librarian, born 276 years before our era, gave the name of Isis, mother of Horus.” This is only what Kircher gives (in Ædipus Ægypticus, iii. 5), quoting Albumazar: “In the first decan of the Virgin rises a maid, called Aderenosa, that is pure, immaculate virgin . . .sitting upon an embroidered throne nursing a boy . . . a boy, named Jesus . . . which signifies Issa, whom they also call Christ in Greek.” (See Isis Unveiled, ii. 491)] and not the Pagan symbol that was modelled for the new occasion.
We know through Herodotus that the Mysteries were brought from India by Orpheus—a hero far anterior to both Homer and Hesiod. Very little is really known of him, and till very lately Orphic literature, and even the Argonauts, were attributed to Onamacritus, a contemporary of Pisistratus, Solon and Pythagoras—who was credited with their compilation in the present form toward the close of the sixth century B.C., or 800 years after the time of Orpheus. But we are told that in the days of Pausanias there was a sacerdotal family, who, like the Brâhmans with the Vedas, had committed to memory all the Orphic Hymns, and that they were usually thus transmitted from one generation to another. By placing Orpheus so far back as 1200 B.C., official Science—so careful in her chronology to choose in each case as late a period as possible—admits that the Mysteries, or in other words Occultism dramatised, belong to a still earlier epoch than the Chaldæans and Egyptians.
The downfall of the Mysteries in Europe may now be mentioned.
The Last of the Mysteries in Europe
(Page 298) AS was predicted by the great Hermes in his dialogue with Æsculapius, the time had indeed come when impious foreigners accused Egypt of adoring monsters, and naught but the letters engraved in stone upon her monuments survived—enigmas unintelligible to posterity. Her sacred Scribes and Hierophants became wanderers upon the face of the earth. Those who remained in Egypt found themselves obliged for fear of a profanation of the sacred Mysteries to seek refuge in deserts and mountains, to form and establish secret societies and brotherhoods—such as the Essenes; those who had crossed the oceans to India and even to the (now-called) New World, bound themselves by solemn oaths to keep silent, and to preserve secret their Sacred Knowledge and Science; thus these were buried deeper than ever out of human sight. In Central Asia and on the northern borderlands of India, the triumphant sword of Aristotle’s pupil swept away from his path of conquest every vestige of a once pure Religion: and its Adepts receded further and further from that path into the most hidden spots of the globe. The cycle of* * * *being at its close, the first hour for the disappearance of the Mysteries struck on the clock of the Races, with the Macedonian conqueror. The first strokes of its last hour sounded in the year 47 B.C.. Alesia [Now called St. Reine (Cote d’Or) on the two streams, the Ose and the Oserain. Its fall is a historical fact in Keltic Gaulish History.] the famous city in Gaul, the Thebes of the Kelts, so renowned for its ancient rites of Initiation and Mysteries, was, as J. M. Ragon well describes it:
The ancient metropolis and the tomb of Initiation, of the religion of the Druids and of the freedom of Gaul. [Orthodoxie Maconnique, p. 22.]
Alesia and Bibractis - (Page 299) It was during the first century before our era, that the last and supreme hour of the great Mysteries had struck. History shows the populations of Central Gaul revolting against the Roman yoke. The country was subject to Cæsar, and the revolt was crushed; the result was the slaughter of the garrison at Alesia (or Alisa), and of all its inhabitants, including the Druids, the college-priests and the neophytes; after this the whole city was plundered and razed to the ground.
Bibractis, a city as large and as famous, not far from Alesia, perished a few years later. J. M. Ragon describes her end as follows:
Bibractis, the mother of sciences, the soul of the early nations [in Europe], a town equally famous for its sacred college of Druids, its civilisation, its schools, in which 40,000 students were taught philosophy, literature, grammar, jurisprudence, medicine, astrology, occult sciences, architecture, etc. Rival of Thebes, of Memphis, of Athens and of Rome, it possessed an amphitheatre, surrounded with colossal statues, and accommodating 100,000 spectators, gladiators, a capital, temples of Janus, Pluto, Prosperpine, Jupiter, Apollo, Minerva, Cybele, Venus and Anubis; and in the midst of these sumptuous edifices the Naumachy, with its vast basin, an incredible construction, a gigantic work wherein floated boats and galleys devoted to naval games; then a Champ de Mars, an aqueduct, fountains, public baths; finally fortifications and walls, the construction of which dated from the heroic ages.[Op. cit., p.22.]
Such was the last city in Gaul wherein died for Europe the secrets of the Initiations of the Great Mysteries, the Mysteries of Nature, and of her forgotten Occult truths. The rolls and manuscripts of the famous Alexandrian Library were burned and destroyed by the same Cæsar, [ The Christian mob in 389 of our era completed the work of destruction upon what remained: most of the priceless works were saved for students of Occultism, but lost to the world.] but while History deprecates the action of the Arab general, Amrus, who gave the final touch to this act of vandalism perpetrated by the great conqueror, it has not a word to say to the latter for his destruction of nearly the same amount of precious rolls in Alesia , nor to the destroyer of Bibractis. While Sacrovir—chief of the Gauls, who revolted against Roman despotism under Tiberius, and was defeated by Silius in the year 21 of our era—was burning himself alive with his fellow conspirators on a funeral pyre before the gates of the city, as Ragon tells us, the latter was sacked and plundered, and all her treasures of literature on the Occult Sciences perished by fire. The once majestic city, Bibractis, has now become Autun, Ragon explains.
(Page 300 ) A few monuments of glorious antiquity are still there, such as the temples of Janus and Cybele.
Ragon goes on:
Arles, founded two thousand years before Christ, was sacked in 270. This metropolis of Gaul, restored 40 years later by Constantine, has preserved to this day a few remains of its ancient splendour; amphitheatre, capitol, an obelisk, a block of granite 17 metres high, a triumphal arch, catacombs, etc. Thus ended Kelto Gaulic civilisation. Cæsar, as a barbarian worthy of Rome, had already accomplished the destruction of the ancient Mysteries by the sack of the temples and their initiatory colleges, and by the massacre of the Initiates and the Druids. Remained Rome; but she never had but the lesser Mysteries, shadows of the Secret Sciences. The Great Initiation was extinct. [Op. cit., p.23. J.M. Ragon, a Belgian by birth, and a Mason, knew more about Occultism than any other non-initiated writer. For fifty years he studied the ancient mysteries wherever he could find accounts of them. In 1805, he founded at Paris the Brotherhood of Les Trinosophes, in which Lodge he delivered for years lectures on Ancient and Modern Initiations (in 1818 and again in 1841), which were published, and now are lost. Then he became the writer in chief of Hermes, a masonic paper. His best works were La Maconnerie Occulte and the Fastes Initiatiques. After his death, in 1866, a number of his MSS, remained in the possession of the Grand Orient of France. A high Mason told the writer that Ragon had corresponded for years with two Orientalists in Syria and Egypt, one of whom is a Kopt gentleman.]
A few further extracts may be given from his Occult Masonry, as they bear directly upon our subject. However learned and erudite, some of the chronological mistakes of that author are very great. He says:
After deified man (Hermes) came the King-Priest [the Hierophant] Menes was the first legislator and the founder of Thebes of the hundred palaces. He filled that city with magnificent splendour; it is from his day that the sacerdotal epoch of Egypt dates. The priests reigned, for it is they who made the laws. It is said that there have been three hundred and twenty-nine [Hierophants] since his time—all of whom have remained unknown.
After that, genuine Adepts having become scarce, the author shows the Priests choosing false ones from the midst of slaves, whom they exhibited, having crowned and deified them, for the adoration of the ignorant masses.
Tired of reigning in such a servile way, the kings rebelled and freed themselves. Then came Sesostris, the founder of Memphis (1613, they say before our era). To the sacerdotal election to the throne succeeded that of the warriors. . . . Cheops who reigned from 1178 to 1122 built the great Pyramid which bears his name. He is accused of having persecuted theocracy and closed the temples.
This is utterly incorrect, though Ragon repeats “History.” The Pyramid called by the name of Cheops is the Great Pyramid, the building of which even Baron Bunsen assigned to 5,000 B.C. He says in Egypt’s Place in Universal History:
The Learning of Egypt -
(Page 301) The Origins of Egypt go back to the ninth millennium before Christ.[Op. cit., iv. 462.]
And as the Mysteries were performed and the Initiations took place in that Pyramid—for indeed it was built for that purpose—it looks strange and an utter contradiction with known facts in the history of the Mysteries to suppose that Cheops, if the builder of that Pyramid ever turned against the initiated Priests and their temples. Moreover, as far as the Secret Doctrine teaches, it was not Cheops who built the Pyramid of that name, whatever else he might have done.
Yet, it is quite true that
Owing to an Ethiopian invasion and the federated government of twelve chiefs, royalty fell into the hands of Amasis, a man of low birth.
This was in 570 B.C., and it was Amasis who destroyed priestly power. And
Thus perished that ancient theocracy which showed its crowned priests for so many centuries to Egypt and the whole world.
Egypt had gathered the students of all countries around her Priests and Hierophants before Alexandria was founded. Ennemoser asks:
How comes it that so little has become known of the Mysteries and of their particular contents, through so many ages, and amongst so many different times and people? The answer is that it is again owing to the universally strict silence of the initiated. Another cause may be found in the destruction and total loss of all the written memorials of the secret knowledge of the remotest antiquity.
Numa's books, described by Livy, consisting of natural philosophy, were found in his tomb; but they were not allowed to be made known, lest they should reveal the most secret mysteries of the state religion. . . .The senate and the tribunes of the people determined . . . that the books themselves should be burned, which was done. [History of Magic, ii, II.]
Cassain mentions a treatise, well-known in the fourth and fifth centuries, which was accredited to Ham, the son of Noah, who in his turn was reputed to have received it from Jared, the fourth generation from Seth, the son of Adam.
Alchemy also was first taught in Egypt by her learned Priests, though the first appearance of this system is as old as man. Many writers have declared that Adam was the first Adept; but that was a blind and a pun upon the name, which is “red earth” in one of its meanings. The correct information—under its allegorical veil—is found in the sixth chapter of Genesis, which speaks of the “Sons of God” who took wives of the daughters of men, after which they communicated to (Page 302) these wives many a mystery and secret of the phenomenal world. The cradle of Alchemy, says Olaus Borrichius, is to be sought in the most distant times. Democritus of Abdera was an Alchemist, and a Hermetic Philosopher. Clement of Alexandria wrote considerably upon the Science, and Moses and Solomon are called proficients in it. We are told by W. Godwin;
The first authentic record on this subject is an edict of Diocletian about 300 years A.D. ordering a diligent search to be made in Egypt for all the ancient books which treated of the art of making gold and silver, that they might, without distinction, be consigned to the flames.
The Alchemy of the Chaldæans and the old Chinamen is not even the parent of that Alchemy which revived among the Arabians many centuries later. There is a spiritual Alchemy and a physical transmutation. The knowledge of both was imparted at the Initiations.
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This document is a
publication of the
Canadian Theosophical Association (a regional association of the Theosophical Society in Adyar)
89 Promenade Riverside,
St-Lambert, QC J4R 1A3
To reach the President - Pierre Laflamme dial 450-672-8577
or Toll Free - from all of Canada 866-277-0074
or you can telephone the national secretary at 905-455-7325