Question: The Western Wisdom Teachings state that the white blood corpuscles are not the policemen of the system. What then is their origin and mission? (Vol.II, #50)
Answer: To make this clear to most people it is first necessary to say that besides the dense body which is visible to all of us, there are finer vehicles which interpenetrate this organism and which are the springs to its activities. One is the vital (etheric) body, composed of ether and concerned in building the dense body by the food which we take into the system. It controls all the vital functions, such as respiration, digestion, assimilation, etc., and works through the sympathetic nervous system. Another, still finer vehicle, is called the desire body. This is the vehicle of our emotions, feelings, and desires which expends the energies stored in the dense body by the vital processes through control of the cerebro-spinal or voluntary nervous system. In its activities this desire body is constantly destroying and breaking down tissue built up by the vital body and it is the war between these two vehicles which causes what we call consciousness in the physical world. The etheric forces in the vital body act in such a manner that they convert as much of the food as possible into blood, and this is the highest expression of the vital body.
In the lower animals, from the birds on downward, which are entirely under the guidance of an invisible guardian called the Group Spirit, the blood is nucleated, but in the higher mammals which are upon the threshold of individualization, and particularly in man, who has become an individual, indwelling Spirit, there are no nuclei in the blood corpuscles. Even in the fetus, which is formed under the sole guidance of the mother during the first three weeks, and therefore has nucleated blood corpuscles in that period, they cease to be formed as soon as the Ego which is to live in the body enters. This happens about twenty-one days after conception, and by the time of the quickening the indwelling Ego in the fetus has destroyed all the nucleated corpuscles. From henceforth none are formed, for the Ego must be master of its vehicle. That is not the case where there is a nucleus or center in the blood corpuscles which affords a foothold for another Spirit. It is easily demonstrated that the life is in the blood, for while we may sometimes with impunity amputate an arm or limb, we cannot deplete the body of blood without also killing it.
Thus the blood is the particular vehicle of the Ego, and as in the past aeons of development we have crystallized matter in order to form our dense body, so also it is destined that now we must etherealize our vehicles in order that we may lift ourselves and the world out of the realm of materiality and into the spiritual. Naturally, therefore, the Ego aims first to make the blood gaseous, and to the spiritual sight, this red unnucleated blood is not a fluid, but a gas. It is no argument against this assertion that the moment we prick our skin the blood comes out as a liquid. The moment we open up the try- cock of a steam boiler the gas also condenses into a liquid, but if we make a model steam engine of glass and look at the way steam works there we shall see only the piston move backward and forward, driven by an invisible agent, live steam. Similarly as the live steam direct from the boiler is invisible and gaseous, so also the live blood in the human body is a gas, and the higher the state of development of any given Ego, the more ethereal it is able to make the blood.
When, by the vital processes, food has reached this highest alchemical state, the process of condensation begins and the blood-gas is formed into tissue in the various organs to replace what has been wasted or destroyed by the activities of the body. The spleen is the gateway of the vital body. There the solar force which abounds in the surrounding atmosphere enters in a constant stream, to aid us in the vital processes, and there also the war between the desire body and the vital body is waged most fiercely.
Thoughts of worry, fear, and anger interfere with the processes of evaporation in the spleen. A speck of plasm is the result, and this is at once seized upon by a thought elemental which forms a nucleus and embodies itself therein. Then it commences to live a life of destruction, coalescing with other waste products and decaying elements whenever formed, making the body a charnel house instead of the temple of an indwelling living Spirit. We may therefore say that every white corpuscle which has been taken by an outside entity is to the Ego a lost opportunity. The more of these lost opportunities there are in the body, the less is the body under control of the Ego. Therefore, we find them present in larger numbers in diseased people than in those possessing health. It may also may be said that the person of a jovial good nature or one who is devoutedly religious and has an absolute faith and trust in divine providence and love, will register many less lost opportunities, or white blood corpuscles, than those who are always worrying and fretting.
Question: Since evolutionary progress demands changes in man's food from time to time, will you kindly indicate some characteristics of the food of the future? (Vol. II, #52)
Answer: At the present time food taken internally is broken down and decomposed by heat inside the body. Thus the chemical ether permeating each particle of food combines with the chemical ether of our vital body. The food magnetized by the Sun working in the plant is thereby assimilated, and remains with us until this magnetism is exhausted. The more directly food comes to us from the soil, the more solar magnetism it contains. Consequently, it "stays with us" the longest when eaten uncooked. When food has gone through the process of cooking, a part of the ether it contained is lost, as a number of the finer particles are dissolved by heat and ascend in the kitchen as odor from whatever food it comes. Consequently the cells of cooked food remain a shorter time as a part of our body than in the case of uncooked food, and food which has already been assimilated by the animal has very little chemical ether of its own (except milk which is obtained by a vital process and has a greater quantity of ether than any other food). Hence with regard to the flesh of animals it may be said that most of the chemical ether in the fodder has gone into the vital body of the animal before it was killed, and at its death the vital body leaves the carcass. Therefore flesh putrefies very much quicker than vegetables and "stays with us" only a short time after we eat it.
Death and disease are largely due to the fact that we subsist on food composed of cells robbed of their individual chemical ether obtained during plant assimilation. This is different and not to be confused with the planetary chemical ether which permeates mineral, plant, animal, and man. But the flesh food deprived by death of the individual vital body which ensouled the animal during life is really reduced to its chemical mineral form and as such is of small value in vital processes. In fact, it is a detriment thereto and ought to be eliminated from the system as quickly as possible. But being mineral, these particles of flesh are dead and difficult to move. Therefore, they accumulate gradually. Even a part of the plant food which is ash and mineral stays in our system, so there is a gradual process of clogging which we describe as growth. This is because we rob the plant or other food of its chemical ether. Were we like the plants and capable of impregnating the mineral with ether we would really be able to assimilate it and grow to giant statures, but as it is, the dead material accumulates more and more until finally growth s stopped, because our powers of assimilation become less and less efficient.
In the future we shall not digest our food inside the body, but extract the chemical ether and inhale it through the nose where it comes in contact with the pituitary body. This is the general organ of assimilation and promoter of growth. Then our body will become more and more ethereal, the life processes will not be hindered by clogging waste and consequently disease will gradually disappear and life be lengthened. It is significant in this connection that often cooks feel no inclination to eat because the pungent odor of cooking satisfies them to a great extent.
Science is gradually learning the truths previously by occult science and their attention is being more and more directed to the ductless glands which will give them the solution of many mysteries. However, they do not seem to be aware as yet that there is a physical connection between the pituitary body, the principal organ of assimilation, and therefore of growth, and the adrenals, which eliminate the waste and assimilate the proteins. These are also physically connected both with the spleen and the thymus and thyroid glands. It is significant in this connection from the astrological point of view, that the pituitary body is ruled by Uranus, which is the higher octave of Venus, the ruler of the solar plexus where the seed atom of the vital body is located. Thus Venus keeps the gate of the vital fluid coming direct from the Sun through the spleen, and Uranus is warder of the gate where enters the physical food. It is the blending of these two streams which produces the latent power stored up in our vital body until converted to dynamic energy by the martial desire nature.
This article was adapted from "The Rosicrucian Philosophy in Questions and Answers, Vol. II," by Max Heindel.