As we look off into the starry dome of the heavens, we may see a picture that is awe-inspiring, and the longer we gaze, the greater are the number of stars which present themselves to view. Among them there are two bright stars called by astronomers the lamps of the night. They are ever revolving about the North or Pole Star, the mariner's guide. These two stars are the foremost in a group called the Plow or Dipper, and are ever pointing the way to the Pole Star, which is almost staionary and for that reason most reliable as a friend to give direction to the saailor at sea. We admire the splendor of these bright stars, and our eyes at once begin to trace the figure of the Great Bear, of which they are a part.
Should we look through one of our telescopes at the stars which we admire, we should be lost in a system of stars and worlds--worlds which man has scarcely dreamed of, and which are many times greater in size than our tiny earth. As we develop larger instruments and the lens carries us further into the depths of space, the panorama becomes more wonderful. If a man-made instrument has the power to penetrate so much farther than his limited physical sight, imagine how much greater must be the picture of God's universe to the man who can travel through these great distances. To the adept there is no physical distance. The very thought will take him on spiritual wings to visit a planet or a world, and his penetration is limited only by his development. As he grows in spiritual consciousness, so will his power to penetrate through space increase and the pictures become more awe-inspiring.
Materially minded man is too prone to believe that what he sees with his eyes--the beauties of nature which surround him in the material world, the hills, the trees, the flowers, sunshine and the clouds--constitute all there is to his world. He cannot conceive of anything beyond what he can see, feel, or hear. Even the life which presents itself through the telescope he accepts as a part of his tiny universe. He fails to recognize the greatness of God's world; he cannot understand its bigness, for he is lacking in reverence for things beyond those which add to his comfort and his pleasure.
The astronomer with his wonderful instruments is unable to count all the worlds or ascertain definitely whether these worlds are inhabited. He believes that Mars is inhabited, but all attempts to communicate with this planet have failed. But what we are most interested in is God's great picture gallery. We have touched upon and admired the pictures of nature as man sees them with the naked eye and with the assistance of the telescope, but the most wonderful pictures are found through the use of vision more reliable than man with his instruments can ever expect to develop, a sight which is latent in him, but which he may again develop. This is the sight which he possessed in the earlier periods of his existence before his vision was clouded by the dense veils of matter. This spiritual sight is that which the ego possessed when as a virgin spirit it was differentiated within God.
Man has a knowledge of right living and facilities for studying the seven worlds and their methods of evolutionary development. If he grasps these truths, not theoretically but practically, and makes them a part of his life by living them, then he will slowly remove the veils which in his dip into matter he has drawn about himself. He will then gradually regain his spiritual state, which will enable him to see the pictures in God's great gallery that we call the Memory of Nature. This true picture gallery of God is found in the highest subdivision of the Region of Concrete Thought. To be able to view the great moving picutre screen of the world and the light upon it in this region it is necessary that man pass through several Initiations. His development will then permit him to view this moving panorama of creation; nature's pictures are ever moving. The modern moving picture reel is a wonderful imitation of what the highly developed man sees in the records of the universe.
Our beloved Elder Brothers have by this method of reading in the Memory of Nature been able to pass on to us the great truths which are contained in the "Cosmo-Conception." Max Heindel by making the necessary sacrifices and by living a life of purity and loving service was able to remove the veils which obscured his spiritual sight, and by the help of the Elder Brothers he was permitted to view these pictures and impart to his readers more knowledge in ten short years than many other advanced mystics or occultists have done in a lifetime.
Every formation of stone, every plant and animal, as well as man, is recorded in some part of that great moving picture. Every event of its past history from its very beginning is pictured there. Nothing is too small or insignificant to prevent its record being imprinted upon that screen.
Let us sit down, close our eyes, and imagine what the sensations would be like to have these pictures pass before us, showing the beginning of the earth, the force of the first great cause, the fiery mist, then the incrustation of the earth. Let us imagine what the pictures would be like, as they pass before our mind's eye, of the darkened Saturn Period and its hot mineral-like state.
Imagine the life of God in its work of development as it passed around the seven globes, each globe a little more developed than the preceding, and then the period of rest or chaos which must needs come between the time of manifestation of each globe or period and that of the next. As we reach the second period, called the Sun Period, imagine a blinding, illuminated, fiery nebula in its constantly changing, constantly improving state under the guidance of the Lords of Flame. In this period the Lords of Wisdom radiated from their own bodies the germ of the vital body of man, which was to interpenetrate his dense physical body that had been started in the Saturn Period. Can we imagine such a body, which was developed from a mineral-like state, becoming plantlike?
After the life wave of this period had accomplished its work by circling seven globes, it again enetered upon a period of rest or sleep. Note how wonderful it is that all life, from its highest expression down to its lowest, passes through its daytime and its nighttime.
We will now pass on with our moving panorama, and skim lightly over the pictures pertaining to the formation of the world during the third or Moon Period. Here we again find the mystical number seven. (See Diagram 8 on page 197 of the "Cosmo-Conception.") This will give us an idea of the great scheme of God, as the worlds are formed in cycles of seven; seven globes in each period, and seven periods.
The moon being of a watery nature, naturally water was the element added in the Moon Period to the Saturn heat and the Sun fire. We may form an idea of this period by taking a red-hot ball of iron and causing it to revolve at a rapid rate while pouring water on it. A warm mist will rise in the atmosphere. This describes somewhat the atmospheric conditions found in the Moon Period. The Lords of Wisdom co-operated with the Lords of Inidividuality, who now took charge of the evolving life wave. Man-in-the-making had reached the stage where embryonic sense organs and glands were developing. In the third revolution of the Moon Period the Lords of Individuality radiated from themselves the substance from which man, with the assistance of these great ones, built his desire body.
Previous to this the virgin spirits which started in the Saturn Period were conscious of the pictures in the Memory of Nature which were moving about them, but as veil after veil was added, the pictures faded. For instance, in the Sun Period the addition of the vital body to some extent began to obscure the spiritual light. It was like hanging a veil between man and the sun; the light was slightly dimmed. In the Moon Period the germ of the desire body was added, which gave a desire for action. The evolving body of the virgin spirit was given the power to move, but by the addition of the desire body another veil was added, and the light of the spirit was obscured to a still greater degree. It was now encased in a three-fold body.
This loss of the spiritual sight now caused the spirit to turn within for the light which it had lost. Then the before mentioned picture consciousness was turned inward, and individualization began. The Moon beings were strange, animal-like creatures. Max Heindel describes them as having a baggy body, very similar to the placenta in its development between the fourth and sixth weeks. They had the appearance of being suspended by strings in the atmosphere, just as the embryo hangs in the placenta by the umbilical cord.
The vegetation, as we may observe in our moving picture, was growing to an enormous size; the steam-laden atmosphere was conducive to rapid grwoth.
We emerged from the long sleep of a cosmic night after the Moon Period. As we stated in the preceding chapter, a cosmic night must come after each period. We will now skim lightly over the views of the fourth or Earth Period. Like the human spirit, which must find its growth and expression through successive lives in the physical body, so is the earth the body of a Great Spirit seeking its development through these successive periods.
We can only touch upon the principal scenes in this great picture gallery. Imagine how long a time a man may spend viewing pictures when he passes long rows of paintings in one of our art galleries. He must pass quickly, stopping to admire only the pictures which appeal to his artistic sense. Similarly must we unroll the film of God's great universe, and touch only on the things which interest us most.
In the fourth or Earth Period we find four elements. In the first or Saturn Period there was but fire; in the Sun Period we had fire and air; in the Moon Period we had three elements, for moisture was then added, giving us a warm, misty atmosphere. In this fourth picture we add the element of earth. This is the period of form, when the Lords of Form hold sway.
These world periods are divided into seven subperiods or revolutions, which according to the Rosicrucian teachings are named for the seven planets-- Saturn, Sun, Moon, Earth, Jupiter, Venus, and Vulcan--because the conditions on the globes of these periods were similar to the natures of these planets.
In viewing the pictures of the earliest revolution of the Earth Period we find the Saturnian conditions existing. But there was a difference between the Saturn Period and the Saturn revolution of the Earth Period, for the first had only the forces of Saturn in it, while in the latter there were present the Saturn, Sun, and Moon forces, and man was no longer a heat being as in the Saturn Period. Currents of air and water were added to the heat of the body, and man began to harden and become mineral-like. The globes at this time were still in a fiery condition, and the evolution of the human spirit was confined to the polar regions of the sun, of which the earth was still a part.
In the Polarian Epoch the body of man gradually assumed a form, and the sense of feeling was slowly developed, which was made possible through the organ now known as the pineal gland. This organ protruded through the top of the peculiar bag-shaped body. This bag-shaped body was not suspended by etheric strings as in the Moon Period. The string was missing, and we find in its place the organ mentioned above as the pineal gland, but this organ was at that time much larger than the tiny pea-shaped organ of today. Through this organ force currents were sent to the region where the heart is now found. In this epoch man's sense of feeling extended all over his body. He sensed heat and cold through the organ which protruded from the head.
In our next picture we will observe the life in what is termed the Hyperborean Epoch. Here we see the forces of light and air operating, and the bag-shaped body of man became filled with light. He then began to breathe, which started currents in the body that later developed into nerves. In this epoch man's dense body was permeated by the vital body, which caused the former to rapidly increase in size. Man was then plantlike. At the end of this epoch the earth was thrown off from the sun and began to revolve about the parent body.
At this period the panoramic view of this picture undergoes a decided change. We are no longer viewing it from the sun but from the earth, which was then becoming incrusted. As it was then separated from the sun, its great heat began to disappear. It cooled, and vegetation appeared upon its hot, steaming surface. We may now also observe Mars, which had previously been thrown off from the sun. The currents of air caused by the revolving of the earth cooled the minerals, and life on the earth began to make rapid changes.
By this time the picture shows the Lemurian Epoch. Venus, Mercury, and the other planets had been expelled from the sun, and we now see them revolving about it. Human beings by the separation of the earth from the sun had lost much of their inner illumination. From this trancelike state man then began to develop an inner picture consciousness. He also developed the consciousness of sound. At the end of the Hyperborean Epoch man possessed a two-fold vehicle, the physical and vital bodies. At this period of the earth's development the moon was cast off from the earth, and the currents which in the Moon revolution had started the nervous system now became the nerves, and were connected with the embryonic sense organs. Then a third vehicle, the desire body, was further developed.
In the Lemurian Epoch man became animal-like. There came to his assistance at this time great beings who were the humanity of the Sun Period, the Archangels, and the Lords of Mind, who were the humanity of the Saturn Period. They assisted the Lords of From with their work, and gave the germinal mind.
Heretofore we have said little about the stragglers who failed to keep up with the forward march of the pioneers. In every life wave we find the straggler. At the present time we find imperfection in the mineral; the weeds are imperfect plants; the mongrel is an imperfect animal. .... The anthropoids were left behind in the Saturn and Sun Periods .... In the different revolutions of the Earth Period this segregation has continued. At the end of each epoch the human race must pass an examination, which is well described in the 25th chapter of St. Matthew, where Christ gives a description of the last judgment as follows:
31.--"When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory:
32.--"And before Him shall be gathered all nations: and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
33.--"And He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.
34.--"Then shall the King say unto them on His right hand, Come ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world."
The sheep are the chosen ones who at the close of each eopch are carried forward into the next period. The goats are the stragglers, and may be likened to the boy who plays truant and stays away from school; when the final examinations come, he is left behind to stay in the same class a second term, while his comrades who were faithful in their attendance and work pass on to the higher grade.
These stragglers had to be left behind whenever the life wave emerged from a cosmic night. The most progressive who were in the advance line were taken forward into the next revolution, but the stragglers were left. They will, however, have opportunities to catch up with the pioneers sometime, somewhere.
Our pictures as we advance into the later epochs of the earth period become more interesting and the scenes more familiar. The vegetable kingdom appears more natural to us, although not developed to the stage in which we find it at this present day.
Again turning to the picture of the earth during the Lemurian Epoch, we find the atmosphere still hot and filled with a dense fog, with man and animal living in spots on the earth which had somewhat hardened and cooled. Both were of enormous size, and vegetation grew to great heights. Ferns were as large and massive as the trees are today.
Man had developed the sense of hearing and sight was just beginning to develop in two sensitive spots, which the sun, faintly shining through the clouds, was sensitizing and which later became the eyes.
We now come to the part of God's great picture reel which depicts the earth in the latter part of the Lemurian Epoch. Man was gradually taking an upright position. The spinal column was becoming hardened, and the blood was taking in the iron which was supplied by the Martian influence. The ego, which up to that time had worked upon its vehicles from without, was gradually drawing within, and man began to sense things outside of him. At this period he was wholly unconscious of his physical body. He was awake, however, in the desire world and could at that stage commune directly with the gods.
The sound of the sighing of the winds, the storms, the rushing of the waters, were to him the voices of his gods. He was by the sacrifice of part of his creative faculty then developing a larynx which permitted him to make sounds. He was learning the use of this organ by imitating the rustling of the leaves and the noise of the winds. The same creative faculty was also building a brain, although he had only the most crude faculty of observation. This Lemurian man had no eyes, but the two sensitive spots previously mentioned were developing, and as the light of the sun, which showed very dimly through the fog, became stronger, these sensitive spots eventually with the help of the sunlight developed into eyes.
At this period of man's involution a class of beings entered into the picture who were to take a very prominent part in the shaping of man's future, the Lucifer spirits, who were fallen angels, a class of stragglers from the Moon Period. These spirits were halfway between man and the angels in their evolution, and must find an avenue through which they could gain knowledge. Their evolution depended upon what they could gain through a lower life wave, and as they did not understand the building of a physical body, they could not function as low as man, who had a physical body. By helping man, however, to develop a brain these Lucifer spirits knew that they would create an avenue through which they could help him in his evolution and by so doing they would also gain much experience and growth for themselves.
It has ever been and is still a law in nature for all beings, no matter in what life wave we may seek, be they the great lords of creation, the archangels, or angels, Lucifer spirits, group spirits, or virgin spirits, that as they reach downward to help or guide the lower beings or life waves, assisting them in their development and growth, these lifters in turn gain experience and grow in proportion to the help given. We may follow this law down into the very lowest kingdoms--all classes are under it. The Lucifer spirits saw an opportunity to help humanity, and even though by so doing they cause man to fall into generation, which has caused much suffering, still they showed him the path through which both they and he could gain the greatest amount of experience. Experience is the path of knowledge, even though it must needs bring suffering. To man this fall into sin was truly the opening of greater vistas of worth. To him these seemingly evil Lucifer spirits were truly the light bearers.
While man was unconscious of the outer world, he could, however, communicate with these Lucifer spirits in the ethereal world. Through them he was taught the difference between good and evil. By them he was tempted and led into generation. While he was unconscious of the earth and his physical surroundings, he perceived the presence of his brothers spiritually, very much as man of today, who has but a slight development of the sixth sense, can feel and sense an invisible presence, and feels confident that at times some discarnate being is near him which he is unable to see with the physical eyes. Similarly was the Lemurian conscious of his brother. The conditions at that time were reversed from what they are now. Man could see and commune with his brother, as well as with the higher beings in the desire world, but in the physical world he was in a dream state, for his physical eyes had not yet been opened. On the other hand, man of today has his physical eyes opened and can see his brothers in the physical body, but his spiritual eyes are blinded--he has lost the faculty of seeing in the desire world.
We will now turn to the portion of our picture which covers the first and second parts of the Atlantean Epoch. We still find the atmosphere filled with a thick fog; it was possible to see but a few feet away. Man's figure, which was then upright, was massive; his upper body was very large, with enormous shoulders and long arms; his head was small in proportion to his body, the forehead sloping back from a much flattened nose; the jaw was massive and the neck heavy. This early Atlantean man had not yet acquired the use of his feet for walking as man does today, but he moved by leaping, similar to the progression of the kangaroo.
During the earlier parts of the Atlantean Period the earth was frequently visited by floods, which caused man and animal to leave the lowlands. Gradually, as the fog condensed, the lowlands became covered with water, driving all living things to seek safety by climbing to higher points. This migrating to the higher lands and the condensing of the fogs enabled man to see the sun shining through the clouds, and also further developed his eye. Then Adam beheld his mate, Eve.
At this stage in man's development he could see as well in the spiritual world as in the physical. This was necessary at this period, for he had but the germ of the mental body. He now had a three-fold body, a physical, a desire, and a vital body, but only the rudiments of a brain; therefore he must still be guided by the divine leaders with whom he could commune in the desire world. When the Atlantean looked at his brother, he at once recognized the soul, and its attributes. As the fog receded to the lowlands, it caused great floods. The more advanced of mankind, whom we read of symbolically in the Bible as Noah, leader of the Semites, and his family, had developed lungs with which to breathe the clear air above the fog-laden atmosphere, and they were the first to see the rainbow. Man was no longer a childlike member of God's family, for as he developed memory, he became ambitious, and self-hood began to make its appearance, which divided mankind into races.
As we reach the third period of Atlantis, we find mankind divided into nations, and kings were worshiped, not for their goodness and love but for their lordliness and for their occult power, which, however, some of them used in a most depraved and selfish manner. Temples were erected for the use of black magic, which the priests practiced on the people in order to keep them in subjection. Arrogance and brutality ruled, for the ego of man was yet weak, and the animal nature, the desire body, ruled the child mind of the people of that epoch. This caused the Atlanteans to develop the faculty of cunning, and led to great wickedness. The most brutal of all the seven Atlantean races were the Turanians, the fourth Atlantean race. Black magic was practiced by this race in a most revolting manner. The lower classes were oppressed most cruelly by those who were supposed to be the leaders. Vanity and outward display were the ruling fashion.
The next or fifth race, the original Semites were the first to make the effort to develop thought. Although very primitive, yet they made an effort to regulate their desires. These people were most zealous to keep the race pure by marriage only in the same family. This was for the purpose of keeping their spiritual contact with the invisible worlds. They were at that time still in conscious touch with spiritual leaders in the desire world. But as the mental faculties developed, the pineal gland (which we described in our previous chapters as being the organ of orientation that protruded from the baglike body of man in the Polarian Epoch, but which as the body developed and man began to walk upright receded into the head) through which man contacts the spiritual realms, drew deeper into the head as the gray matter thickened, thereby preventing contact with the spiritual leaders.
A similar condition may be noted at the present day: in the lower phases of evolution, for instance, in .... those that are still unenlightened, we find the spiritual faculties still developed to some extent, while in the case of the purely intellectual type, the mental giant of the Western world, we often find the spiritual scoffer who will not believe what he cannot prove on the material plane. Not alone was the spiritual sight sacrificed as the brain grew, dome-like, over the pineal gland, but the abuses of the generative faculty caused this tiny gland to atrophy and become much smaller.
We now pass on to the picture which is perhaps the most familiar to us, that of the fifth or Aryan Epoch. The man whom we have pictured up to this present period was expressing himself through a fourfold body, a physical, vital, desire, and partially developed mental body. But as man evolves and necessity calls for them, changes take place. Man is now forming the matrix for a new body, the soul body, that shining raiment in which he is to meet Christ in the air, the body in which he will again meet his spiritual teachers and commune with them direct. This body is now shaping in many who are working to purify their lives and who are beginning to sense the necessity of living not for self but for all. As the desire body is mastered and the physical body purified, and as the two higher ethers are developed, this new soul body shapes itself.
We have previously touched lightly upon the principal points on the path of evolution of the earth and man to the present period. We will now see how this connects with the story given to us in the Bible.
Genesis, 1st chapter, 2nd verse: "And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep." How well this describes the dark Saturn Period.
Genesis 1st chapter, 3rd verse: "And God said, Let there be light; and there was light." This together with the following five verses, refers to the Sun Period as described in the "Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception."
God gathered the waters together and made the sea, separating the land from the water, in the period of the world's formation which we speak of as the Moon Period.
Comparing these different days of creation with the Epochs, the formless, dark first day of creation corresponds to the Polarian Epoch. Man was yet mineral-like. When God commanded the light to shine and the vegetation to grow, the vegetable kingdom was formed, which occurred in the Hyperborean Epoch. God said, "Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life." This portion of the Bible story of creation refers to the fire-fog of the Lemurian Epoch, when man's body was beginning to harden. We have then the evening and the morning of the fifth day, when God let the earth bring forth creatures after their kind, cattle and creeping things. In the 26th verse, it is recorded that God said: "Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth." 27th verse: "God created man in his own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them." We have here the sixth day. These verses refer to the Atlantean Epoch.
After man became a reasoning being, having a mind with which to think, God gave him dominion over the lower kingdoms. After God had turned the lower kingdoms over to man, God rested; not as the literal religionists would have Him do, namely, sit down and refuse to work, with a man servant and a miad servant to serve Him. God was in the same position then as a mother is who has brought her boys and girls to the stage of puberty, watching over and caring for them until they are old enough to be repsonsible for their own acts. So did God turn man out of the child garden of play, the Garden of Eden, and made him responsible. God was then released from the task of directing all his activities. However, if He really ceased His work for but one instant, all the world would fall to pieces.
The seventh day of creation corresponds to the Aryan Epoch, the epoch in which we are living at the present time, and in which man has assumed the responsibility for his own future. God has placed this work upon man's shoulders, but the Creator is not resting. The formation of the world is still going on. Man has been given the work of caring for, work with, and perfecting the mineral, vegetable, and animal kingdoms. Naturally, as a amn works with these lower life waves, as he digs the metals and pumps the oil out of the earth, refining them and working them over he helps them in their evolution. His development of the various species in the vegetable kingdom is helping to perfect this life wave. Luther Burbank was a veritable god in this third life wave, the plant kingdom. He has developed soome of the lowliest species, raising their vibrations so that they have become truly trnasformed in size and beauty. Man has cultivated the tiny wild potato and now brought it to such a size and mellowness that it has become one of the principal staple foods. His work with the animal kingdom has also done wonders, even though he has sometimes been a cruel master who has used his power over this second life wave to cause great suffering. Still he has helped the animals to evolve. But has this cruel work been effective? Could this life wave not have been helped to a greater extent through more love? It has been demonstrated that the child will respond more quickly to love than to the rod. The gardener who loves his work is the most successful, so why should not the animal respond to love more quickly than to brutality?
Another wonderful picture reel which we must not fail to look upon, and which is a proof of the path of evolution that man has traveled, may be found in the life of the foetus. We find depicted in this tiny form the seven stages through which we have followed man in his development from the Saturn Period, through the various other periods and epochs. This foetal life also corresponds to the human life wave in its development during the seven days of creation as described in the first and second chapters of Genesis.
Let us follow the formation of the human embryo and see how the wonderful life within the womb compares with the outer evolution of man. The human ovem is one tiny cell, which when fertilized is converted into a compact ball which divides into many small cells. This may be termed the mineral or Saturn Period of its existence. This new life by the middle of the fourth week assumes a plantlike appearance. This stage is then followed by a tadpole phase, which later is superseded by a reptilian aspect. In one of the primitive stages of the embryo it is bag-shaped, similar to the form of man's body in the Moon Period. This bag-like form is suspended by the umbilical cord. In the Moon Period this cord was of an etheric nature. Max Heindel describes the moon beings on page 80 of "The Web of Destiny" as follows: "Fancy, now, in that far-off time the firmament as one immense placenta from which there depended billions of umbilical cords, eqach with its foetal appendage....These umbilical cords and foetal appendages were molded from the moist desire stuff by the emotions of the lunar angels."
During the fifth week the embryo begins to grow a tail, which becomes one-sixth as long as its body during this period. It then takes on a decidedly reptilian appearance, similar to that of the lizard, also having gill clefts. This foetal form is also surrounded by water. Between the seventh and eighth weeks the reptile has changed its form. The tail has atrophied and the head has taken on a pugdog-like appearance, with short arms and legs. The hands and feet are paws, with fingers and toes developing. From the tenth week the foetus begins to take on a human form. The nose begins to develop. The man-in- the-making at this period develops beyond the animal and becomes all human, reaching its perfection in the seventh month. Here we again find the perfection of God's work. At the end of the sixth cosmic day man was a self- conscious being. He was required to take up his own work in the seventh and free God from the exclusive care of him.
One more picture, which is of vital interest, is that of a tiny physical atom which is mentioned in Revelation, 20th chapter, 12th verse: "And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, whcih is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works." This book of life is a tiny seed atom within man's body, the only atom which is permanent. It is found in the apex of the left ventricle of the heart. We are told in the "Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception" that the blood is the direct vehicle of the spirit, and being the highest physical expression of the ego it is naturally in closest touch with the Memory of Nature. As the blood is forced through the heart, it engraves the pictures of the life of the man, hour afterm hour, upon this tiny atom, making a perfect record of his life. Not alone does this infinitesimal atom record the present life, but it has etched upon it the pictures of all the man's past lives.
From the time when the child draws its first breath, when the foramen ovale is closed and the blood is forced through the heart and lungs, the air taken into the lungs impresses the pictures of the surroundings upon this atom in the heart in a manner similar to that by which an impression is made upon the film of a camera. This impress remains all through life. The rupture of the connection between this permanent seed atom and the heart causes the latter to stop its beating, which ends in death. During the three and one-half days immediately following this rupture all the pictures which have been impressed upon this atom are etched through the vital body into the desire body. This, by the way, is a most critical time for the ego, and it is of the greatest value to it that the body be left undisturbed. When the ego's life in the desire world is finished, and the ego on its return to earth life brings this wonderful record with it. It is the physical seed atom which draws to itself the atoms which constitute the new physical body.
A word here about the Darwin theory of evolution and its correlation with the Roscicrucian doctrine is in order:
Darwin was the pioneer scientist in orginating and developing the materialistic theory of evolution, and in so doing he displayed great genius and insight. He blazed the trail which succeeding scientists have ever since been following to a greater or lesser degree.
Darwin's theory was primarily based on the origin of species through "natural selection" and their development through "survival of the fittest." Natural selection is spoken of by the Rosicrucians as Epigenesis, namely the power of the spirit to originate new causes. Darwin was entitled to much credit for the discovery of this principle in nature, although the occultist has been in possession of this knowledge for ages.
Natural selection or Epigenesis is responsible for the gradual improvement of the bodies in which man functions and also the improvement of the environment in which he lives. Darwin's theory of the "survival of the fittest" is merely a self-evident fact in all nature. Darwin left out of account, however, the spiritual origin and nature of man, which is of course the most serious defect in his theory. As stated in the preceding pages, amn is primarily a spark of God, a three-fold spirit making an evolutionary pilgrimage through matter for the purpose of obtaining added self- consciousness and new powers. A knowledge of this fact alone makes evolution rational and understandable.
The Rosicrucians state emphatically that man has never been an animal. He has neither descended from nor ascended from the animals. The idea that he has done so is an unfortunate circumstance in connection with Darwin's version of evolution. This is the bone of contention among the Fundamentalists at the present time. Science regards an animal merely as a mass of living matter. It does not know that the animal is ensouled by a virgin spirit as a lower stage of development than we. Man has never been a mere living mass of matter without a soul. He is and always has been a spirit. But there was a time in the prehistoric past when he inhabited animal-like bodies. At a certain stage in our history a small section of the Egos of our life wave began to straggle away from the main body and degenerate. These stragglers have become anthropoid apes. But we have never passed through the anthropoid stage. The apes are degenerate men. When the church people get this idea, the greater part of their objections to the teaching of evolution in the schools will without doubt disappear.
Darwin presented the material facts of evolution in such a way that they could be grasped and accepted in the materialistic age in which he lived. In so doing he served a great purpose. But it is necessary that his work be supplemented by a statement of the spiritual facts connected with evolution, and this occult science is doing.
How pathetic is the struggle of the anti-evolutionist to the occult scientist, who can see with the X-ray sight, who has positive proof of evolution, who can observe the picture reels of the microcosm as well as of the macrocosm, and who can follow the records of man through many lives! How absurd this struggle is to such a one, in which a few men who are limited in their vision are making an attempt to restrict the religious thought of free America, and who would dictate to the world what it shall and what it shall not believe! One great benefit, however, will be derived from the struggle over evolution: If the fundamentalists could but see the effect which their fight against evolution will have upon humanity, they would know that they are being used as instruments by the Great Ones who are guiding us behind the scenes, to bring about a national interest in evolution. People are now reading Darwin and comparing him with the book of Genesis who never thought of it before, and they are seizing upon any book which deals with the subject. The result will be that many will become converts to the very doctrines that the fundamentalists are attempting to ban by law. Thus we may see that the anti-evolution controversy which is creating such vast interest throughout the entire world, is truly a cloud that has a silver lining.