CONCERNING GOD (1)
BUT why should we be at the pains to seek further than the phenomenal? Why this incessant craving to prove ourselves immortal, and to argue a God into the universe?
The answer is manifold, because the appeal is to nature, to reason, and to principle. First, evolution, as revealed by the facts of physical science, is inexplicable on the material hypothesis; as equally also are the facts of occult science and experience. Secondly, it has been proved that mind in man anticipates the demonstration of natural laws, and argues by mathematical and logical induction that what is ought to be, while yet the actual fact is undiscovered. It is thus evident that mind, greater than and yet identical with man’s intelligence, has preceded phenomenon. Thirdly, the primary principle in the sane mind, justice, demands satisfaction, and insists that rectitude of intelligence infers also rectitude of spirit. And if this be conceded, all the rest follows. What, then, must we conceive – positing this indefeasible principle of justice as the central sun of our philosophical system? Equity on all planes, and a perfect correspondence and balance between physical and spiritual; between the world of causes and the world of effects. Justice is represented
by the dual balance, of which one scale is spirit and the other matter; one male and the other female; without which dual principle the system of the balance itself would be impossible. The balance is unity; the scales are the duad.
What, then, is God? Spirit; essential substance. Is God, then, impersonal? Impersonal if the word persona be taken in its radical meaning, but personal in the highest and truest sense of that word if the conception be of essential consciousness. For God has no limitations. God is a pure and naked fire burning in infinity, whereof a flame subsists in all creatures. The Kosmos is a tree having innumerable branches, each connected with and springing out of various boughs, and these again originating in one stem, and nourished by one root. And God is as a fire burning in this tree, and yet consuming it not. God is “I AM.” Such is the nature of infinite and essential being. And such is God in the beginning before the worlds.
What, then, is the purpose of evolution and separation into many forms? Life is the elaboration of soul through the varied transformations of matter.
Spirit is essential and perfect in itself, having neither end nor beginning. Spirit is abstract. Soul is secondary and perfected, being begotten of spirit. Soul is concrete. And the whole object of creation or manifestation is the evolution of souls. Spirit is the primary Adam; soul is Eve, the woman, taken out of the side of the man. Spirit is the first principle; soul is the derivative.
Now, the essential principle of personality or consciousness – the higher personality – is spirit. And this personality is God. Wherefore the higher and interior personality of every monad is God. But this primary principle, being naked essence, could not be separated off into individuals unless contained and limited by a secondary principle. This principle, being derived and not essential, must be evolved. Spirit, therefore, is projected into matter in order that soul may be begotten thereby.
Soul is begotten in matter by means of polarisation, And spirit, of which all matter consists, returns to its essential nature in soul. Soul is the medium by which spirit is individuated, and in which it becomes concrete. So that by means of creation, God the One becomes God the Many. And the object set before the saint is so to live as to render the soul luminous and consolidate with the spirit, that thereby the spirit may be perpetually one with the soul, and thus eternise its individuality.
For personality is of and in the spirit; but individuality appertains
to the soul. But for creation there would be one vast diffused and unindividuated consciousness, contained in one vast diffused substance. Of this substance all things consist by means of this force or spirit; and the soul grows up out of matter by means of evolution; – that is, by the inherent force acting on the manifest substance. And thus the soul is born in the womb of matter, and within her is conceived the personal element which, divided from God, is yet God and man. For God is not multiplied neither diminished; but God is separated into many. The matter is the wax, the soul is the wick, and God is the flame which illumines. If they ask thee the reason of creation, thou shalt answer, – The evolution and elaboration of the soul.
Anna is the rolling year, the Time, of which is born Maria the soul, the mother of God. (1) God is the first of the ten categories of Aristotle (2) as the number one is the root of all numbers. Thou canst not begin the tables with the duad, because the unity is the primal idea. Therefore this unity is positive and essential in necessity.
To God everything is good; it is only to men that evil appears positive. As it is written, “I am the Lord, and there is none else; I form the light and create darkness; I make peace and create evil; I the Lord do all these things.” For that which differentiates evil from good is the plane of the action, and the medium in which the thought is conceived. If thou love from the plane of the spirit through the medium of the soul, thou lovest as Christ loveth. But if thou love from the plane of the astral man, through the medium of the body, thou hast lust. And, again, if spirit desire aught, it desires that which is like itself, spiritual, and its treasure is in heaven: this is aspiration. But if the plane of desire be the astral, the medium of desire is material, and the material desireth matter, that is, riches upon earth. This is avarice. And again, the passion of the spirit is a fierce upward burning towards spirit; a force bursting forth and leaping into life; a vehement taking of heaven by heavenly violence. This is zeal. But the passion of the astral is a fierce burning downward through the body; a force translating itself in material action; a furious and blind collision of matter with matter. This eventuates in murder. See, then, that according to the plane
and the medium, so is an act good or evil. There is nothing truly evil in its essential idea; for, primarily, all is good, because the primary is spirit.
(In answer to questions.) Any desire or act of the body that does not profit the mind, that is sensuality.
It is necessary that certain interior mysteries belonging to the Celestial be kept secret, because if they should be given to the people the mysteries would all speedily become materialised, and so lost. But if they be confided to a few Wise, and transmitted only to the Initiate, they will be preserved in their true meaning. And again, if these wise men betray their secret, the uninitiated would lay violent hands on them, and so they and the secret would perish together. But when the majority are wise, then may the mysteries be told openly. (1)
(103:1) See Part I, No. III, “Concerning the Immaculate Conception,” and No. XLVIII (i), “Concerning the Christian Mysteries.”
(103:2) Σόφία, original substance or simple being; the Ensoph of the Kabala. E.M.
(104:1) The fact that the mysteries have been disclosed anew, expressly in order that they may be made generally known, is by no means to be interpreted as an indication that in the view of their guardians the time has come when the “majority are wise.” But this only; – (1) That the concealment of the mysteries has already led to their materialisation and loss at the hands of the priesthoods, and only by their publication can they be restored; and (2) that the majority are sufficiently wise, at least in the land of the present promulgation, to refrain from murderous persecution either for the sake of opinion or in the interests of an Order. E.M.