Sections: General Index   Present Section: Index   Present Work: Index   Previous: V - Prophetic Conditions of the End    Next: Vll - Conclusion



(p. 55)





            THE prophecies under consideration not only foretell an end, they announce also a beginning. And as the character of this incoming era is specified no less clearly than that of the outgoing, they afford a double index whereby to recognise the period of their fulfilment.


            We are told also that while the new era would commence in the midst of a general disruption of society in all its departments, social, political, moral, and religious, such as is now plainly occurring, it would not at first be of a character to attract general observation, but on the contrary would be imperceptible to all but the few specially qualified to discern it. Thus it is said, “the kingdom of God cometh not with observation,” but quietly, and when least looked for of the generality, “as a thief in the night,” treading noiselessly in the darkness, while the household is wrapt in slumber. For only the “Magians,” or few highly-trained wise, on the one hand; and on the other, those who, being born spiritual and

(p. 56)

mystic, are by their natures seekers after God and God’s righteousness, and who accordingly “watch,” like shepherds, “the flocks” of their own pure hearts and high aspirations – only these know the precise time and place of the birth of a new and better era of humanity, catch the angelic strains of its annunciation, and behold, “beautiful upon the mountains” of their own spiritual elevation, “the feet of the messengers” thereof, in the advancing rays of the coming day.


            For an event such as this always “comes in humility.” It is at first insignificant, “as a grain of mustard seed,” or “a little leaven.” And it is born underground, at night, or “in a cave,” like the sun, which, at the turning-point which ushers in a new day or year, is directly beneath the earth – fitting symbol of the soul buried in Matter. And, driven from the presence of men, it finds refuge among the animals, to be cradled, as it were, in a manger. It comes, too, like Eve, the soul of the man, whose first appearance to complete him in his proper Divine image is always made when the Adam, his earthy and merely intellectual part, is lulled “in deep sleep.” And always is the world heedless of its imminent approach, as when Noah, the seer, gave his warning in vain, and prepared for himself his ark of refuge.


            Between the present crisis of the world, and the two

(p. 57)

instances last referred to, and especially the latter, there is a correspondence of the closest kind. The story of the creation is a parable of the attainment by man of his spiritual consciousness, – whether individually or collectively – and therein of his true majority and manhood, as the crowning point of a long course of evolution from the lowest upwards; a course during which, as he had attained no such consciousness before, he had undergone no declension or “fall.” Here the fixation of the soul and the advent of the intuition are symbolised as the creation, or manifestation, of the “Woman.”


            The parable of the Flood, on the other hand, points rather both to a fall and a recovery, for it describes at once the destruction of a “world,” or system of civilisation, become altogether materialistic, and its replacement by a restoration of faith, both processes being due to the operation of the intuition. And so exactly do the periods referred to correspond, that the account given of one applies equally to the other. In both cases the earth, to its loftiest places – that is, the most highly trained intellects of the time – is overspread by materialism, with all its foul resultants in thought, speech, and conduct. The flood comes, and, submerging these highest places, sweeps away the prevailing wickedness. For, the flood is not the wickedness

(p. 58)

itself, but that which destroys it, and bears the righteous few unharmed on its bosom.


            That which ever accomplishes this, and which alone can accomplish it, is a new and overwhelming influx of the soul and her intuition of God. The flood, then, is the Soul, Maria, the Sea, the spiritual substance of all things, and at once mother, daughter, and spouse of the universal animating Spirit. She is the all-pervading, mystic water which washes away sin; and is about to purify – nay, has already begun to purify – the world now, as she purified it then. And she still bears on her bosom the Ark, or human kingdom, with its four elements, body, mind, soul, and spirit, denoted by the three sons of Noah and their father, the Supreme Nous, whose family of seven Persons or Principles comprises at once the whole human and the whole Divine nature – the “wives,” standing for spiritual activities related to their respective consorts, or states. (1) And of these, as then, will “the whole earth be overspread” with the knowledge of the Divine truth, concerning the nature at once of God and man.


            And, here we may for a moment stop to observe, it is always through these Seven that the Supreme Nous or Mind, operates,

(p. 59)

whether to create, or to re-create, which is to redeem. It is they through whom – as in Genesis I, 26 – Deity declares its intention of making man in its own Divine image; that is, at once twofold, in being spiritually “male and female;” and sevenfold, in manifestation of the Seven Spirits of God, or Principles, which together comprise all perfection; – a design assuredly not fulfilled in the creation of man physical merely, or even intellectual and moral. It is the pinnacle of this perfection which is typified in the Bible as Mount Ararat, and is called by the Buddhists Arahat, the path to which is by their “eight-fold perfect way.” And it is reached only when the “mount of regeneration” has been ascended to the summit, or the “new birth of water and the spirit” has been experienced. And it is to the same Divine Seven – enumerated, as we have seen, under their representative planets, or angels, in the prophecy of Trithemius – that the seven prismatic rays of the rainbow correspond, the bow itself being another type of the soul, or feminine principle, the arc or arché, and a symbol at once of the sevenfold Divine nature, and of the perpetual presence of the Divine Spirit in the soul and substance of all things. And for yet another celestial token in the physical heavens, we have for Supreme the pole-star, and for the Elohim the car of seven stars which, revolving round it, point ever to it.


(p. 60)

            No doubt, too, that now, as then, after the ascension will come a declension; that as with the pair of Eden, after the rise will come a fall; and as also with the tenants of the ark, the world, unable to maintain in perpetuity such unwonted spiritual elevation, will some day come down the mount it is already ascending, and return to a lower level of thought and life. Yet hardly to one so low as that on which it at present stands. For, Humanity remembers; and the circle of life never returns exactly to itself, but, as a spiral, to a plane in advance of the commencement of the former round. For thus only is evolution possible. Wherefore evolution itself involves an Ego which persists and remembers, and this alike for the individual, the race, the planet, the system, and the universe. And now that the Gospel of Interpretation has come, bringing the truth which is to make us free, mankind can no more be terrified or cajoled into mistaking the form for the reality, and accepting the “stones” of unintelligible dogmas for the true “bread” of life. Now, the true bread of life is that doctrine which by reconciling the intellect with the intuition, alone finds entrance into the understanding.



            Is it said that the illumination has come too late; that the patient is past recovery; that the “mountain” of

(p. 61)

materiality which is overwhelming the world is beyond the power of any faith to remove? Nature has an encouraging word about this also. It is always in the darkness and cold of the night and of the winter, that the day and the year are re-born. True, this age is witnessing the darkest night, the severest winter-solstice, which the soul of man has ever known. But the dawn of a new and better time is not the less sure, though few have heart left to hope for it, and the mists and clouds may long hide the sun from view even after it is above the horizon. Thus is Nature herself a perpetual witness of the truth of that which we are declaring, and a glass to mirror the ways of God with man.


            Besides, have we not also in the very changes now occurring in the social system of our own land, a sure prophecy and pledge of precisely such a new manifestation of the soul as that which we have just described? Has not the secular position of woman with us been completely revolutionised by the laws lately passed, and this in the very first year after the fateful year 1881, and while the Parliamentary “Adam” slumbered, and knew not what he was doing? And the woman, as we have seen, is the type of the soul; so that her social advancement may well serve as a prognostic of the soul’s rehabilitation and restoration to her

(p. 62)

proper place, to be no longer the chattel and slave, but the partner and guide, of the man. And, as if expressly to reinforce the obvious inference from this coincidence, the very first place to accord full recognition to the claims of woman, has been the little isle called of Man, an event which was consummated by its legislature in 1881. Now, as has been shown, it is always by his recognition, appreciation, and exaltation of the “woman,” alike on the plane physical and the plane spiritual, that man attains manhood, and becomes truly Man, and the “Beast” in him is subdued.


            And, to turn to another plane, what more fitting or suggestive symbol of the new spiritual illumination to occur in 1881, than the Electric Light, of which that year witnessed the introduction?


            Does it not, indeed, appear as if there were about us Influences no less condescending than potent, – no less playful than wise, – who, while striving to accomplish our salvation in spite of ourselves, yet have consideration for our dulness, and devise startling coincidences to catch our attention?




(58:1) Concerning the manifoldness of the Scripture Symbology, see The Perfect Way, Lecture VII, Part 1.



Sections: General Index   Present Section: Index   Present Work: Index   Previous: V - Prophetic Conditions of the End    Next: Vll - Conclusion