Those who have studied the writings of the ancient alchemists have always been much mystified by what is said concerning the philosopher's stone and the process of transmuting the base metals into gold. These claims have naturally given rise to a great deal of vague speculation. From time to time, students have asked for a direct statement from the writer concerning this subject of paramount importance, and as we are standing upon the threshold of a new age where this precious jewel with all its power will be evolved and possessed by a considerable number of people, we feel that it is important to divest the subject of all the mystery that surrounds it and speak in plain terms concerning the matter. Then all who really wish to take the trouble involved, for it involves arduous labor, nothing worth having being ever gained without cost, may know how to make for themselves this great gem.
We are taught that in the beginning God created Heaven and Earth--the whole universe in fact, and we understand that this great creative force expresses itself either as will or imagination. By imagination the Great Architect of the Universe must first have visualized everything as it now is, or as it was first created, and then by His will the physical atoms were marshaled into this matrix of thought, thus gradually bringing the universe into manifestation as designed by its creator. Nor is this process complete, but will continue until the whole has become perfect as originally designed.
The divine Hierarchies who have carried out the plan of the great Creator also use the same dual creative force when fashioning the crystal in the mineral, the leaf of the plant, or the shape of the animal. Their powerful imagination pictures in the archetypal region of the earth that which they desire to create, and their concentrated will moulds the coarser matter into this matrix until it assumes a definite physical form as desired.
Man, the spirit, has a like creative power, and has through the ages, under the guidance of the Gods, learned to build bodies of increasing value as instruments for his expression. But his pilgrimage through matter was undertaken for the purpose of making him an independent creative intelligence, and to attain that end it was necessary that he should at the proper time, be emancipated from the guardianship of the Gods, so that he might learn to create, not only for himself, but also to aid and to teach others in the great School of Life.
During the course of his evolution, Man has become more and more enlightened concerning the mystery of Life; but nevertheless, it is only a few hundred years ago when life and liberty were endangered by the expression of opinions in advance of the commonly accepted views. It was for this reason that the alchemists who had studied more deeply that the majority, were forced to embody their teachings in highly allegorical and symbolical language. Their teaching concerning the spiritual evolution of man, and their use of the terms salt, sulphur, mercury, and azoth, so mystifying to the masses, were nevertheless rooted in cosmic truths, highly illuminating to the Initiate. The students of the Rosicrucian teachings who have learned how the world came into being and the process of gradual creation should have no difficulty in properly understanding every part of the alchemist's language.
We know in the first place, that there was a time when Man-in-the-making was a hermaphrodite, male-female, and able to create from himself, and we remember also that at that time he was like the plant in other respects. His consciousness was like that which we possess in dreamless sleep and which is possessed by the plant. The vital energy which he absorbed into his body was used solely for the purpose of growing, until the time of propagation came, when a new budding body was cast off to grow also. There was no incentive to action, but if there had been, Man would have had no mind or will to direct it.
For the emancipation of humanity from this negative condition, one-half of the creative force was turned upward under the direction of the angels for the purpose of building a larynx and a brain, that man might learn to create by thought as do the divine Hierarchies, and express the creative thought in words. Thus man ceased to be physically hermaphrodite and became uni-sexual. He can no longer create from himself physically as do the hermaphrodite plants, nor psychically as do the Elohim, the male-female Hierarchs, in whose image he was originally made, and thus he occupies at the present time, an unenviable intermediate position between the plant and the God.
At the time when one half of the human sex force was diverted for the purpose of building a brain, men were helpless and lacking in knowledge of how to overcome conditions. They did not even have the consciousness to know that there was a difficulty, and had no outside help been given the race must have died out. Therefore the Angels from the Moon, who were the guardians of mankind, herded the sexes together in great temples at times when the interplantetary lines of force were propitious to propagation and thus they perpetuated the race. It was also proposed that when the brain had been completed, the Lords of Mercury, Elder Brothers of our present humanity who excelled in intelligence, should teach us how to use the mind and make it truly creative so that we would no longer be dependent upon the separate sexual process of generation now in vogue. Thus by the work of these two great Hierarchies, we were raised from unconsciousness to the first stage of creative intelligence, from plant to God.
We have also learned that this plan was frustrated by the Lucifer Spirits, stragglers from the humanity of the Moon Period, who lived upon the planet Mars. They needed a physical field of action, but were unable to create one for themselves, hence for selfish reasons they taught humanity how by cooperation of the sexes a new body may be created at any time; and in order to give an incentive they instilled into mankind the animalistic passionate nature which we now possess.
Thus to the ancient alchemists, the Angels from the Moon which rules the saline tides of the sea were designated by the term "salt." They had found that a certain amount of salt in the blood is necessary to the mental processes, also that excess salt in the blood produces insanity, as best proven by the experiences of shipwrecked sailors who become lunatics when they drink water containing the lunar element salt. Thus also they established a connection between the Moon and mind.
The fiery Lucifer Spirits who have taken such a baneful part in man's evolution became associated with the fiery element "sulphur." The alchemists said that man is rendered unconscious and dies by continuous inhalation of this element; so man, the spirit, was rendered unconscious of and dead to the spiritual realms by the teachings which were instilled into him by the Lucifer Spirits.
The metal Mercury, they contended, is the most elusive of all metals. It will penetrate and evaporate through most substances with which it is brought in contact; and therefore they likened it to the Lords of Mercury who are past masters in penetrating the secrets of nature by the mind. Mercury is also capable of freeing the spirit from its physical prison house.
By the process of generation carried on at a propitious time under the guidance of the Angels, man was treading the path from plant to God, following the highway of evolution as originally planned.
From this path he strayed into the byways of degeneration, led by the Lucifer Spirits, and is therefore now as it were in a slough from which he cannot extricate himself save with the help of others further advanced than he.
When this becomes apparent to him and he starts to search for light, he stands at the pathway of regeneration guarded by the Lords of Mercury who with their wisdom will guide him toward the desired goal. The method as outlined by the ancient alchemists we shall discuss when we have summed up in a few words the points made. These must be firmly fixed in mind to appreciate the full value of what follows.
The creative force used by God to bring a solar system into manifestation, and the force used by the divine Hierarchies to form the physical vehicle of the lower kingdoms over which they rule as group spirits, expresses itself in a dual manner as will and imagination, and is the same as the united creative force of the male and the female which results in the creation of a human body. At one time man was bi-sexual, male-female, and therefore each was able to propagate his species without assistance from anyone else. But one-half of the creative force has been temporarily diverted upwards to build a brain and larynx in order to enable him sometime to create by his own mind, to form thoughts and speak the word of power that shall make his thoughts flesh. Three great creative Hierarchies were particularly concerned in bringing about this change: the Angels from the Moon, the Mercurians, and the Lucifer Spirits from Mars. The Alchemists connected the Angels from the Moon, which rules the saline tides, with the element salt, the Lucifer Spirits from Mars with the element sulphur, and the Mercurians with the metal mercury. They used this symbolic presentation partly because of the religious intolerance which made it unsafe to promulgate any other teaching than that sanctioned by the orthodox church of that day, and partly because humanity as a whole was not yet ready to accept the truths which were embodied in their philosophy. They also spoke of a fourth element, azoth, a name composed of the first and last letters of our classical languages and intended to convey the same idea as "alpha and omega"--that of all-inclusiveness. This referred to what we now know as the spiritual ray of Neptune, which is the octave of Mercury and which is the sublimated essence of spiritual power.
The alchemists knew that the moral and physical nature of man had become gross and coarse on account of the passions inculcated by the Lucifer Spirits, and that, therefore, a process of distillation and refinement was necessary to eliminate these characteristics and elevate man to the sublime heights where the splendor of the spirit is no longer obscured by the coarse coating which now hides it from view. They therefore regarded the body as a laboratory and spoke of the spiritual processes in chemical terms. They noted that these processes have their inception and their particular field of activity in the spinal cord that forms the link between the two creative organs, the brain, which is the field of operation for the intellectual Mercurians, and the genitals, which are the vantage ground of the sensuous and passionate Lucifer Spirits.
This tripartite spinal cord was to the alchemists the crucible of consciousness; they knew that in the sympathetic section of the cord which governs the functions that have to do particularly with the upkeep and welfare of the body, the Lunar Angels were specially active and this segment was therefore designated as the element salt. The segment governing the motor nerves which expend the dynamic energy stored in the body by our food they saw clearly to be under the dominance of the Martial Lucifer Spirits, and they, therefore, named that segment sulphur. The remaining segment, which marks and registers the sensations carried by the nerves, was named mercury, because it was said to be under the dominance of spiritual beings from Mercury. The spinal canal, contrary to the ideas of anatomists, is not filled with fluid, but with a gas that is like steam in that it may be condensed when exposed to the outside atmosphere, but may also be super- heated by the vibratory activity of the spirit to such an extent that it becomes a brilliant and luminous fire, the fire of purification and regeneration. This is the field of action of the great spiritual Hierarchy from Neptune and is designated azoth by the alchemists. This spiritual fire is not alike in every man nor is it as luminous in one as in another. The state thereof depends upon the spiritual advancement of the person in question.
When the aspirant to the higher life had been instructed in these mysteries of symbolism and the time had come to speak to him plainly, the following teachings were communicated to him, not necessarily in these words nor in this manner. But at any rate he was given to understand and it was made clear to him that--"anatomically man belongs to the animals, and that below that kingdom in the scale of evolution are the plants. They are pure and innocent, their propagative practices are untainted by passion, and their whole creative force is turned upwards toward the light, where it manifests as the flower, a thing of joy and beauty for all to behold. Yet the plants are unable to do otherwise, for they have no intelligence, no consciousness of the outside world and no free-will in action. They can only create in the physical world, however.
"Above man in the scale of evolution are the gods, creators upon the spiritual and physical planes. They also are pure as the plants, for their whole creative force is also turned upwards and is expended in whatever manner their intelligence directs; and knowing good and evil, they always do good by choice.
"Between the gods and the plant kingdom stands man, a being endowed with intelligence, creative power and free-will to use it for good or ill. At present, however, he is dominated by the passion instilled by the Lucifer Spirits and sends one-half of his creative force downward from the light to gratify his senses. In his innermost soul he realizes that this is wrong, and hence he hides his creative instinct in shame and is outraged when it is dragged into the light. This condition must be altered ere spiritual progress can be made, and, therefore, you must carefully consider the similarity between the chaste plant and the pure spiritual gods who both turn their whole creative power upwards towards the light. In the course of evolution you have risen above the plant, which has creative power only in the physical world, and have become like the gods possessing creative power, on both the mental and the physical planes of being, besides intelligence and free-will to direct it. This was accomplished by the diversion of one-half of your sex-force upwards for building a brain and larynx, organs which are still fed and nourished by this uplifting half of the sex-force. But while the gods direct their whole creative force to altruistic purposes by the power of mind, you still squander one-half of your divine heritage upon desire and sense-gratification. If, therefore, you would become as they, you must learn to turn your whole creative energy upward to be used under the direction of your intelligence entirely. Thus only can you become as the gods and create from yourself by the power of your mind and the Great Word whereby you may speak the creative fiat. Remember that physically you were once hermaphrodite like the plant and able to create from yourself. Look into the future now through the perspective of the past and realize that your present uni-sexual condition is only a temporary phase of evolution and that in the future your whole creative force must be turned upwards so that you shall become a hermaphrodite spiritually, and thus able to objectify your ideas and speak The Living Word which shall endue them with life and make them vibrant with vital energy. This dual creative force thus expressed through the brain and larynx is the 'elixir-vitae' which springs from The Living Stone of the spiritually hermaphrodite philosopher. The alchemical process of kindling and elevating it is accomplished in the spinal cord where the salt, sulphur, mercury and azoth are found. It is raised to incandescence by high and noble thought, by meditation upon spiritual subjects, and by altruism expressed in the daily life. The second half of the creative energy thus drawn upward through the spinal canal is a spinal spirit-fire, the serpent of wisdom. Gradually it is raised higher and higher and when it reaches the pituitary body and the pineal gland in the brain, it sets them to vibrating, opening up the spiritual worlds and enabling man to commune with the gods. Then this fire radiates in all directions and permeates the whole body and its auric atmosphere, and man has become a living stone, whose lustre surpasses that of the diamond or the ruby. He is then The Philosopher's Stone."
There are many other symbols and similes taken from the world of chemistry and applied to the processes of spiritual growth which eventually makes men living stones in the temple of God. But enough has been said in the foregoing to show what was meant by the ancient alchemists by such terms and the reason why they clothed their teachings in symbolical language. The way of initiation is, however, and has always bee open to anyone who really an truly seeks for enlightenment and is willing to pay the price in the coin of self-denial and self-sacrifice. Therefore, seek the temple door and you shall find it; knock and it shall be opened unto you. If you seek prayerfully, if you knock persistently and if you labor manfully you will in time reach the goal and you will become The Philosopher's Stone.
In order to avoid misunderstanding, it should be said that this lesson was only given to the aspirant to discipleship to show him the reason why it is necessary for him to live a pure and chaste life. It does not apply to the masses who have no spiritual aspirations and are as yet unable to restrain their passions. The Rosicrucians do not even advocate an entirely celibate life for their pupils; indeed they regard it as a religious duty for the enlightened mystic, man or woman, to wed a kindred spirit if such can be found, and thus furnish incoming souls a particularly advantageous opportunity for rebirth. When such a devoted couple perform the generative act in a spirit of aspiration to serve a waiting ego, when the prenatal conditions are pure mentally, morally and physically, when the early childhood days of the ego thus born are spent in a home atmosphere of high and noble thought, both parents and children are making wonderful progress. And as great souls cannot be born to ignoble parents any more than water can sink below its level, it would, indeed, be very wrong for aspirants to discipleship to live an entirely celibate life for the sake of self- advancement when conditions permit them to wed; furthermore, the expenditure of the creative force at the few times in a life when it is legitimately required for propagation would not seriously interfere with the spiritual development undertaken to become The Philosopher's Stone, and the soul- growth gained by assuming the duties of parenthood would far outweigh any possible loss.
What the Rosicrucians teach then is that marriage between people who will limit their use of the creative function to the purpose of propagation is eminently good, noble and productive of great soul-growth, but that unmarried aspirant should live an absolutely celibate life if they wish to attain the highest.
In an earlier chapter we noted that the transition of the Adept from the dominion of death to the realm of immortality was foreshadowed in the daring leap of Hiram Abiff, the Grand Master-Workman of Solomon's Temple, into the seething sea of molten metal and his passage through the nine arch-like strata of the earth which form the path of Initiation. We also remember that at the end of that journey Hiram Abiff, the son of Cain, received from his ancestor a new hammer and a new word for use in the New Age. According to the Gospels we also find that Jesus, the son of Seth, immediately after his descent from Golgotha entered the subterranean strata where he remained for some time in communion with the spirits who dwell there. Thus the various strata of the earth from the circumference to the center form the path of Initiation, both for the sons of Seth and the sons of Cain, and that is the reason why little or nothing is said of the inner construction of the earth in the multitude of books dealing with subjects of occultism. Those who are simply psychics do not know, and those who do know are not saying much. There is a chapter on the subject in the Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception which gives about all that one dares to tell, and to that the reader is referred for further information than here given.
The path of Initiation is guarded in various ways. While we walk the earth in our physical bodies, we are drawn toward the center of the earth by the force of gravitation; but our bodies being solid, that is to say, of the same density as the material whereof our globe is composed, we are thus prevented from sinking through the earth by displacement as we would sink in water, or by interpenetration as we would pass through ether. When death comes and we shed this so-called mortal coil, we find ourselves in vehicles that are finer than the elements of the earth. A person clothed in these finer vehicles could easily penetrate through the various strata of our globe to the center if there were no other obstacles. Having shed the dense body, he is no longer subject to gravitation, but to levitation, and on that account he usually finds it sufficiently difficult to stay upon the surface of the earth. Only during the first part of his post-mortem experience when he is still loaded down with the coarsest ether and desire stuff is this possible for him. The more he has gathered of that denser substance by indulgence of his lower nature and cultivation of the habit of drunkenness, covetousness, hatred, malice, immoral emotions, and disreputable vices, the easier it is for him to stay around low saloons, gambling houses, red-light districts, and kindred places. But the man of high ideals and lofty aspirations, who would be the one likely to seek the path of Initiation, feels the impelling force of levitation drawing him outward into the purer strata of the air where the First Heaven is located, and is thus effectually prevented from trespassing upon the path of Initiation. Stories are told of Initiates having overcome the law of gravitation in order to rise in the air at certain times for a definite purpose while still in the dense body. Initiates are also taught how to suspend the law of levitation when they are in their soul bodies, and how to pass through the nine strata of the earth. It is said that Jesus was the son of a carpenter, but the Greek word is tekton, and means builder; arche is the Greek name of primordial matter. It is also said that Jesus was a carpenter (tekton) himself. It is true, he was a tekton, builder or Mason, a Son of God, the Grand archetekton. At the age of thirty-three, when he had taken the three-times-three (9) degrees of Mystic Masonry, he descended to the center of the earth. So does every other tekton, Mason or Phree Messen, (Child of Light,) as the Egyptian called such, descend through the nine arch-like strata of the earth. We shall find at the time of the first advent of Christ both Hiram Abiff, the son of Cain, and Solomon, the son of Seth, reborn to take from Him the next great Initiation into the Christian Mysteries.
In the last chapter we saw while considering "The Philosopher's Stone" that the spinal cord is the principal laboratory for the alchemist, and that the spinal spirit fire, generated by turning the creative force upward through the spinal canal, passing it between the pituitary body and the pineal gland in the brain, gives to man a third eye as it were wherewith to see in the spiritual worlds. When this serpentine spirit fire has been sufficiently evolved, he may read by its light the wisdom of the ages. Therefore Christ exhorted His Disciples to be wise as serpents. The Egyptian word naja, which means serpent, is used at least once in the Hebrew Bible in the 58th Psalm. In ancient Egypt the Pharaohs were Kings and Priests, holding a double office, and they therefore wore a double crown with a uraeus or serpent head so placed that when wearing this crown the uraeus seemed to protrude from the Emperor's forehead between the eyebrows. The serpentine Uraeus was therefore an apt symbol of the wisdom of the wearer.
It will be remembered that according to the Bible story the Lucifer Spirit appeared to Eve as a serpent, a son of Wisdom. Cain according to the Masonic legend, was born from this union with Eve. It is also stated that the Lucifer spirit then left Eve, who thus became a widow, and Cain was thus the son of the Lucifer Spirit, the serpent of Wisdom, and Eve, the widow. Every Initiate to this day has the serpent symbol on his brow and is known to his fellows by that token as a Son of the Widow and the Lucifer Spirit. Therefore we shall trace Hiram Abiff to his next embodiment by that mark, and as evidence given by a party against his own interest is particularly valuable according to law, we call special attention to the following points gained from the Catholic Latin Testament:
In 1st Samuel 19, King James Version, Naioth is spoken of as a place where a school of prophets and seers dwelt, Samuel among others. Naioth is the feminine plural of naja, a serpent, which we have already mentioned as being an Egyptian word used in the Bible. In the Latin version the same place is spoken of as Naim, and Eusebius says it was located near Endor, famous as the abode of the witch, through whose instrumentality Saul spoke with Samuel after the latter had passed on. But it is not to be supposed that Naioth and Naim are places, or that they were used interchangeably. They describe two widely different classes of spiritually gifted people, which the ancient Egyptians had marked by placing the uraeus upon the brows of one and at the navels of the other. The latter were mediumistic persons, receiving impressions from spirit controls through the solar plexus. They were properly designated Naioth by the Hebrews who used the feminine suffix to indicate their negative qualities. But the voluntary clairvoyant and the Initiate, represented by the Egyptians as having the serpentine uraeus in the forehead, were called naim by the Hebrews who used the male suffix to designate the positive spiritual faculty which they possess. And the Latin Catholic version of the New Testament (Luke, chapter vii, verses 11 to 15,) speaks of the person raised by Christ as the widow's son of Nain.
As the serpent is not fully unfolded until the ninth arch of the Lesser Mysteries has been passed and the candidates become aspirants to the Greater Mysteries, and further because the Lodge of Phree Messen (Children of Light) of Ancient Egypt are now transferred to the various branches of the Anglo-Saxon race, where the sound nain means "nine," the original word has been corrupted to mislead all not entitled to the knowledge.
But all things change on this terrestrial sphere, and this applies also to the methods of Initiation and the requirements thereof. Hiram Abiff failed in his great effort to make the molten sea at the time when he was building Solomon's Temple, because he, the son of the fiery Lucifer Spirits, did not know how to blend the element fire with the water poured into his mold by the sons of Seth, the creatures of the water God, Jehovah. At that time he was given a new hammer and a new word. The Hammer was in the form of a cross. The Word was written upon a disc, before he was finally slain by his adversaries. And so he slept until as Lazarus, the Widow's Son of Nain, he was raised by the strong grip of the lion's paw, the Lion of Judah. Then the disc was found, also the new cruciform Hammer, and upon the disc the mystic symbol, the rose. In these two symbols lie hidden the great secret of life, the blending of water and fire, as symbolized by the earthborn fluidic sap ascending through the stem and calyx of the flower to the fire tinted petals, born in the purity of the Sun, but still guarded by the thorns of the martial Lucifer spirits.
Exoteric Masonry, which is only the husks of the Mystic Order formed by the Sons of Cain, has in modern times attracted the masculine element with its positively polarized physical vehicles, and educated them in industry and statecraft, thus controlling the material development of the world. The sons of Seth, constituting themselves the Priestcraft, have worked their spell over the positive vital bodies of the feminine element of dominate spiritual development. And whereas, the sons of Cain working through Freemasonry and kindred movements, have openly fought for the temporal power, the Priestcraft has fought as strenuously and perhaps more effectively by stealth to retain their hold upon the spiritual development of the feminine element.
To the casual onlooker it would seem as if there were no decided antagonism between these two movements at the present time; but though Freemasonry of today is but a shell of its true ancient mystic self, and though Catholicism has been terribly tarnished by the touch of time, in this one thing there is no difference, namely, that the war is as keen as ever. The efforts of the Church are not concentrated upon the masses, however, as much as upon those who are seeking to live the higher life so that they may gain admission to the Mystery Temple and learn how to make the Philosopher's Stone.
As mankind advances in evolution, the vital body becomes more permanently positively polarized, giving to both sexes a greater desire for spirituality, and though we change from the masculine to feminine in alternate embodiments, positive polarity of the vital body is becoming more pronounced regardless of sex. This accounts for the growing tendency towards Altruism which is even being brought out by the suffering entailed by the great war we are now fighting, (1918) for all agree that the nations are seeking to obtain a lasting peace where the swords may be made into plowshares, and the spears into pruning hooks. In the past, humanity has been claiming universal brotherhood as a great ideal, but we must come closer than that to being in full accord with the Christ. He said to His disciples "Ya are my friends." Among brothers and sisters, hate and enmity may exist, but friendship is the expression of love and cannot exist apart from that. Universal Friendship is therefore the magic word which will eventually level all distinctions, bring peace upon earth and good will among men. This is the great Ideal which points the shortest way to the New Heaven and the New Earth, where the sons of Cain and the sons of Seth will eventually be united.
The chart printed in Part V shows that there was an Age when humanity lived in peace and happiness under the guardianship of a ruler who held the double office of King and Priest, being both temporal and spiritual head of the double sexed human race. He is called Melchisedec in the Bible terminology, and it is said that he was King of Salem, Salem meaning Peace. Since then humanity has been divided into two sexes, male and female, and placed under the dual rulership of a King having dominion over their temporal affairs and aiming to advance them by industry and statecraft, and a Priest, head of the priestcraft, exercising a spiritual authority, in such a manner as they considered for the eternal good of their charges.
The statecraft employed by the sons of Cain holds up the male ideal, Hiram Abiff, the Master craftsman, the Son of Fire, while the sons of Seth as priestcraft uphold the female ideal in the Virgin Mary, the lady of the sea.
Thus fire and water, male and female, Church and State, are opposed to each other, with the inevitable result that a great war has been waged ever since the separation, that sin, sorrow and death are rampant, and that humanity is praying for the day of redemption, when the two streams shall be united in the Kingdom of Heaven where there is neither marrying nor giving in marriage, and where reigns Christ, the King of Peace, exercising the dual office of King and Priest after the order of Melchisedec, for the good of all.
But this new order can not come into existence in a day. It requires ages of preparation, not only of the land itself, but of the people who are to inhabit it. And in order to gain an idea of what that land is like, and how the people are constituted, it will be helpful to consider the evolutionary career of humanity which has brought us the land where we live to our present status; that will then give us the perspective to see what is in store for us in the future.
The Biblical and occult traditions agree with science that there was a time when darkness brooded over the deep of space, where the material for the coming earth planet was being gathered together and set in motion by the Divine Hierarchs; that this stage was followed by a period of luminosity, when the dark cloud of matter had become a fire mist; that this was followed by a period when the cold of space and the heat of the planet-in-the-making generated an atmosphere of steam close to the fiery core and mist further from the fiery center. When the mist had cooled sufficiently, it fell again as rain upon the fiery core, to be re-evaporated, and this continued in endless cycles, until by repeated boiling of the waters, an incrustation began to form around the fiery core. Upon the islands of crust in the ocean of fire we first learn of humanity dwelling in solid physical bodies, where of course very dissimilar to those we have today. During the next stage the crust of the earth became sufficiently strong to cover the whole inner core, and humanity lived then in the basins of the earth, in the land of mist, which was so dense that breathing was accomplished by means of gill clefts similar to those of the fishes and still seen in human embryo.
When the mists of Atlantis commenced to settle, some of our forbears had grown embryonic lungs and were forced to the highlands years before their compeers. Therefore they wandered in the wilderness while the promised land as we know it today was emerging from the lighter fogs, and at the same time their growing lungs were fitting them to live under the present atmospheric conditions. Two more races were born in the basins of the earth after the pioneers had left it. Then a succession of floods drove them all to the highlands. The last flood took place when the Sun by precession entered the watery sign Cancer about ten thousand years ago, as told Plato by the Egyptian Priests. Thus we see that there is no sudden change of constitution or environment for the whole human race when a new epoch is ushered in, but an overlapping of conditions which makes it possible for the majority by gradual adjustment to enter the new conditions, though the change may seem sudden to the individual when the preparatory work has been accomplished unconsciously. The metamorphosis of a frog from a denizen of the water to the airy element give an analogy of the past emergence of humanity from the continent of Atlantis to the Rainbow Age of Aryana. And the transformation of an earth worm to a butterfly soaring the skies is an apt illustration of the coming change from our present state and condition to those of the New Galilee where the Kingdom of Christ will be established; and what the change in the human constitution and environment is to be, may be seen by examining the past conditions as outlined in the Bible, which agrees with the occult traditions in the main points. This New Heaven and New Earth is now in the making. When the heavenly time marker, the Sun, came into Aries by precession, a new cycle commenced and the glad tidings were preached by Christ. He said by implication that the New Heaven and Earth were not ready then, when He told his disciples "whither I go, you cannot NOW follow, but you shall follow afterwards; I go to prepare a place for you and will come again and receive you." Later, John saw in a vision the New Jerusalem descending from Heaven, and Paul taught the Thessalonians by the Word of the Lord that those who are Christ's at His coming shall be caught up in the air to meet Him and be with Him for the Age. This is in line with the tendencies shown by past developments. The Lemurians lived very close to the fiery core of the earth. The Atlanteans inhabited the basins somewhat further away from the center. The Aryans were driven by the flood to the hilltops where they are now living. And analogously, the citizens of the coming Age will inhabit the air.
But we know that our dense body gravitates towards the center of the earth, therefore, a change must take place; also Paul tells us that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of Heaven. But he also points out that we have a soma psuchicon (mistranslated natural body,) a soul body, and this is made of ether, which is lighter than air and therefore capable of levitation. This is the Golden Wedding Garment, the Philosopher's Stone, or the Living Stone, spoken of in some of the ancient philosophies as the Diamond Soul, for it is luminous, lustrous, and sparkling--a priceless gem. It was also called the astral body by the Mediaeval Alchemists, because of the ability it conferred upon the one who has it to traverse the starry regions. But it is not to be confounded with the Desire Body which some of the modern pseudo-occultists mistakenly call the Astral Body. This vehicle, the Soul Body, will eventually be evolved by humanity as a whole, but during the change from the Aryan epoch to the ethereal conditions of the New Galilee, there will be pioneers who precede their brethren as the original Semites did in the change from Atlantis to Aryana. Christ mentioned this class in Matthew, 11th chapter, 12th verse, when He said: "The Kingdom of Heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force." That is not a correct translation. It ought to be "The Kingdom of the Heavens has been invaded" (the Greek is biaxetai,) "and invaders seize on her." Men and women already have learned through a holy, helpful life to lay aside the body of flesh and blood, either intermittently or permanently, and to walk the skies with winged feet, intent upon the business of their Lord, clad in the ethereal wedding garment of the new dispensation.
This change may have been accomplished through a life of simple helpfulness and prayer as practiced by devoted Christians, no matter with what church they are affiliated if they follow the path of the Sons of Seth. Others have attained by following the specific exercises given by the Rosicrucians. And thus the process of the unification of the two streams is already under way. But the war between the flesh and the spirit is still raging in the breast of most people as fiercely as it was in the days when Paul gave vent to his pent up feelings, and told us how the flesh was warring against the spirit within himself, and how he did the wrong things which he would not do, and omitted good deed which he aspired so ardently to perform. Nor will the struggle ever cease for the Mystic Mason until he has learned to build the Temple made without hands, which is not completed until he has come to the Eighteenth (1 plus 8) Degree, which is the Degree of the Rose Croix. This is the ultimate of the Thirty-third Degree, for three times three are nine, and one plus eight are nine. Nine being the highest degree in the Lesser Mysteries, he who has passed this degree of the genuine Mystic Order is then, and then only, the Widow's Son of Nine, or Nain, ready to be raised by the strong grip of the paw of the Lion of Judah, to the Kingdom of the Heavens, there to receive the "well done, thou good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord" for "Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the House of God, thence he shall no more go out." He is then immortal, loosed from the wheel of Birth and Death.
In conclusion, it may be well to sum up the points which have been made in these articles on Freemasonry and Catholicism, it being understood that the term "Catholicism" as here used does not refer to the Roman Catholic Church alone, "Catholic" being taken in the sense of universal, so that the term includes all movements inaugurated by the Sons of Seth, the Priestcraft.
The origin of the temporal and spiritual streams of evolution is as follows:
Jehovah created Eve, a human being.
The Lucifer Spirit Samael united with Eve and begat a semi-divine son, Cain. As he left Eve before the birth of the child, Cain was the Son of a Widow, and a Serpent of Wisdom.
Then Jehovah created Adam, a human being like Eve.
Adam and Eve united and begat a child, human like themselves, whose name was Abel. Jehovah, being the Lunar God, is associated with the water, hence there was enmity between Cain, the Son of fire, and Abel, the Son of Water. So Cain slew Abel and Abel was replaced by Seth.
In time and through generations, the Sons of Cain became the craftsmen of the world, skilled in the use of fire and metal. Their ideal was male, Hiram Abiff, the Master workman.
The Sons of Seth, on the other hand, became the churchmen, upholding the feminine ideal, the Virgin Mary, and ruling their people by the magic water placed at their temple doors.
Various attempts have been made to unite the two streams of humanity and emancipate them from their progenitors, Jehovah and the Lucifer Spirits.
With this end in view the symbolical temple was built according to the instruction of Solomon, the Son of Seth and the Molten Sea was cast by Hiram Abiff, the Son of Cain; but the main object was frustrated as we have seen, and the attempt at unification proved abortive.
Moses, the divinely appointed leader of the old dispensation, afterward reborn as Elijah, guided humanity through its ages of infancy, and was finally embodied as John the Baptist, the herald of the new dispensation, the Christian Era. At the same point in time the other actors in the World Drama were also brought to birth that they might serve their brothers.
At the casting of the Molten Sea Hiram Abiff had been given the baptism of fire by Cain, which freed him from the Lucifer Spirits; he was also given a new Hammer and a new Word. When the new Era dawned, he was born as Lazarus, the widow's son of Nain, and raised by the strong grip of the lion's paw to the rank of Immortals as Christian Rosenkreuz.
Solomon, the Son of Seth, was reborn as Jesus. The Baptism of Water administered by John as representative of Jehovah freed him also. He yielded his body at that moment to the descending Christ Spirit and ranged himself with the new leader.
Religion has been terribly tarnished in the course of time, its pristine purity has long since vanished under the regime of creed, and it is no longer Catholic, that is to say, universal. Sects and "isms" have branched out in one direction and another, but still Jesus from the invisible worlds enfolds in his love all the Sons of Seth who will call upon his name by faith, and he will eventually unite the scattered churches in the Kingdom of Christ.
Christian Rosenkreuz was given charge of the Sons of Cain who seek the light of knowledge at the sacred fires of the Mystic Shrine. As the creative energy implanted by their divine ancestor Samael caused Cain to work out their own salvation through the fire of tribulation, and fashion for themselves the Golden Wedding Garment, which is the "Open Sesame" to the Invisible World. And though the cleansing blood of Jesus is an absolute necessity to millions of weaker brothers, there can scarcely be any question when we assert that the more men and women who engage in Mystic Masonry to consciously build this Temple of the Soul, the sooner we shall see the Second Advent of Christ, and the stronger will be the race which He shall rule by the Law of Love.