Dear friend and student:
Read and study this lesson until you are sure that it is clear, as it is very important. Be faithful in your exercises and do not fail to memorize the little poem at the close of the Lesson.
Sincerely your friend,
In your last Lesson I told you a few things which were quite new to you probably, and I think I opened up a realm of thought to you which is fraught with very vast possibilities to say the least. You will remember that the picture was as follows: We saw first the initial creation of the universe from the vast nebula. Probably through explosion, or from some other cause a sun was formed, as they still are being formed in the heavens. Then we saw the earth and its planets as a "throw-off" from the sun. All this, of course, was millions and billions of years ago as far as our own individual earth is concerned. but this same process is still being repeated now in the formation of other planets similar to our own.
You will, of course, realize that this is an immense scheme. and must be governed by some marvelous CREATIVE LAW. We saw that no personality as such ever had anything to do with it, nor indeed can ever have anything to do with it. We saw that no "god" as such could ever be responsible for it, if one looks upon such "god" as an anthropomorphous being of any sort. We saw further that it was a SPIRITUAL LAW which is in operation in this staggering system of creation, and we saw further that the unseen or the spiritual realm is the REAL and the PERMANENT realm. from which all material things must first come.
The Bible paragrapher was quite correct when he stated:- "For the things which are seen are temporal. but the things which are not seen, (or unseen) are ETERNAL." And here in this course of study we are dealing with unseen things. Therefore they are ETERNAL things---they are spiritual things. Almost every scientist of note is quite fully agreed that behind the physical and material universe, there moves a great unseen force. More and more are men coming to realize that the material matters very little---but the spiritual matters very much. Certain it is that there can be no material thing at all, unless such material thing first had its inception and its conception in the unseen realm. It must have been created or its creation directed by the great unseen forces the scientists of to-day are talking about.
Then. you will remember, we saw ACTUAL EVIDENCE of such an unseen force in the famous "cosmic ray" made famous by Dr. Millikan. This "ray" opens up a vast realm. and it is my opinion that in the realm of this "ray" lies the answer to the riddle of the universe. At any rate, if it does nothing else, this "ray" absolutely proves the existence of some unseen force or other. and it is quite reasonable to suppose that as we discover more of these famous rays, we shall also know much more about their nature. Today, however, we know that they exist. There is no chance for argument there. And we know that their discovery is quite recent. We know something else also. We know that a field of immense magnitude has been opened up through the discovery of this "ray."
In the last analysis my friend, and when the last thing about the spiritual realm is known, we shall discover that everything that to-day is deemed "super natural" will be found to be quite beautifully "natural." You know, the Bible has a story in it that there were large walls built around the city of Jericho. We are told that at a certain signal---a blast of a trumpet---these walls fell down killing the enemy. The reason the walls fell down at the blast of the trumpet is because "god" in some supernatural manner or other, caused them to fall. It was looked upon as a "divine intervention" and the walls, we are told, fell miraculously through the miraculous blast of a miraculous trumpet.
But recent investigations and excavations in the ruins of Jericho have told us an entirely different story. These excavations show us that these walls had been carefully undermined, and propped up with heavy stakes. and at the signal of the trumpet, HUMAN HANDS KNOCKED THE PROPS FROM UNDER THE WALLS AND THEY FELL. This is the reasonable and proper explanation of it. And behind every true "super natural" story, no matter how wonderful it may be, there lies a perfectly NATURAL answer. For there is NOTHING supernatural in the universe. Many things, of course, seem to appear "supernatural" to us, but that is only because we do not understand the LAW involved. And, to us I suppose, they are supernatural.
Those of us who are experimenting and delving into the unseen or spiritual realm though, know that there is nothing of the "supernatural" connected with it at all. It's all on account of our own lack of understanding of that realm. And when "earth's last picture is painted," and when the full knowledge of spiritual or natural Law breaks on the earth, the glory of it and the beauty of it will be indescribable. It staggers the imaginations of some of us now, but then you see, that is quite reasonable for we see the import and the amazing glories of the day in which spiritual Law, or natural Law, which is the same thing, will be fully understood. Truly, the Lion shall lie down with the lamb. Truly a child shall lead them. Truly the "glory of the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea." Not, of course, the old murdering church god--"Yah-veh" who struck dead at one lick over 50,000 men women and children. No. Not that human made man-god at all.
But people will then realize how utterly foolish such conceptions of deity are and ever have been. And then, in that day, and in the place of the old pagan philosophies we have to-day, there will break on the world the knowledge of the existence of the CREATIVE LIFE SPIRIT as it actually exists. Then, will the LAW of GOD, or the Law of the Spirit realm. or in other words, the Law of the natural realm, be all-supreme. For--listen to me my friend--the solution to this whole problem, including life and death, LIES IN ABSOLUTELY NATURAL LAW, AND THERE ARE THOSE IN EXISTENCE WHO ARE DRAWING MIGHTY CLOSE TO THE SOLUTION. Some day soon---it will break, and the majesty and simplicity of it all will cause every knee to bow to the MASTER INTELLIGENCE--THE MASTER GOD-LAW responsible for it all. Then shall we know as we are known. Then will material things be the least of our troubles, for they will be quite secondary to the things of LIFE, and how our present pettifogging ideas will fade into nothingness when we realize the vast, the almost incredible majesty of the GOD-LAW. We have been told by those professing to be "agents of god" on the earth that "the finite cannot grasp the infinite." NO? Well the finite CAN grasp the Infinite. The finite IS grasping the Infinite. And it is grasping it simply because the finite IS A PART OF THE INFINITE. That's why. And no matter who you may be studying this Lesson, you may depend upon it that YOU have at your disposal NOW, every single bit of power that exists in the realm of the GOD-LAW, because YOU ARE A PART 0F THAT LAW. You see that don't you?
Never let anyone tell you that you have to die and "go to heaven" before you can ever know God. If you ever die and don't know this God-Law here, then the chances are many to one that you will never know it. But the culmination of it all lies in the fact of ETERNAL LIFE HERE AND NOW. Not in the future. Is this too revolutionary? Well it's not quite revolutionary enough. At any rate it is the way all scientific and psychological and spiritual research is pointing, and whether you believe it or not, the GOD-LAW will manifest itself that way, and will be the highest manifestation of it the world has ever known. And I shall not go on record as saying that this will not be in your day and mine. I do not know with certainty, but I DO KNOW that it will be.
This is the logical sequence of life. This marvelous existence was never meant to be cut short, and this marvelous body was never meant to be reduced to ashes by death. It's too beautiful a construction for that. It is too high a manifestation of the GOD-LAW for that. It should not be. Someone here will say, "Oh--yes--that's a nice theory all right--but to date everyone has died." No question about that. But that is no reason for premising that all shall always die. Certainly not. Twenty years ago there was no diphtheria serum either, and diphtheria meant DEATH. But it does not mean death to-day--it means LIFE. Twenty years ago it was not possible for me to sit in my study and hear the fire-engines racing down Broadway, New York, but I can do that to-day. Twenty years ago nothing was known much of the power of so-called "mind" over matter. but much of it is known to-day. Not many years since the "cosmic ray" was discovered--but it is known now.
So you will have to be a smarter man or woman than I think you are before you say definitely that it CANNOT BE. You have a perfect right to say that it has not been to date, and of course I shall agree with you. But you have NO RIGHT to say that it never can be, for if eternal life is not the one thing promised through every system of religion the world have ever seen, then I know nothing about these systems. It has always been promised. And beside---there is no other logical conclusion to which we can come other than that. There is no other answer to the problem of life. The religionists have told us of course, that the end of all things is to be eternal life, but they have added a proviso: they have told us that only those shall enjoy this eternal life who believe as THEY teach and obtain their "salvation" THEIR own peculiar way, and in accordance with their system of theology. But I differ from them. There is no evidence that this is a fact. It's pure guesswork. Never has there been the slightest scintilla of evidence on which to base such claims. And yet every system of "supernaturally revealed" religion the world has ever seen, and it has seen lots of them, has taught that theory. And they have taught it absolutely without authority of any kind or sort. Of course, they all have their "divine" books, and always these books contain a "divine" revelation from "god" to some prophet or other, but when you try to run down the evidence that the story might be true, you just simply cannot do it that's all. For there is no evidence outside of the internal evidence of these differing religious structures that their stories are true. And that sort of pseudo-evidence is not real evidence at all.
NO---"supernaturally-revealed religion" has had a long time in which to prove its theories, but they still remain unproven, and yet millions still follow them. Not so many millions in America for I doubt very much whether there can be found 500,000 intelligent believers in "supernatural religion," which believers have examined the foundation of their structure and are satisfied that the foundation is reasonably sound. I know it is NOT sound. I know that there never has existed any historical proof of the truth of any "supernaturally-revealed god" the world has ever seen. And it has seen lots of them. This applies to the Christian religion also. There are many people who think that the only man who ever appeared on earth who was called a combination "god" and man was Jesus Christ. This is not correct by any means. He was the LAST one. The church doesn't tell us about the rest of them. It would be just too bad if it did.
I think it might be interesting however, to tell you the names of a few of the "world's crucified Christs," and I know of no better book to quote than the wonderful volume written by Kersey Graves, copyrighted and published by the TRUTHSEEKER COMPANY, 49 Vesey St. New York City. I suggest that my students buy that book. It's one of the most learned things ever written. So I quote the names of these "crucified saviours" from this wonderful book:
"Sakia" the Hindoo "god" was crucified in 600 B.C.
"Thammuz" of Syria was crucified in 1160 B.C.
"Wittoba" was crucified in 552 B.C.
"Iao" was crucified in 622 B.C.
"Hesus" of the Celtic Druids was crucified in 834 B.C.
"Quexalcote" of Mexico was crucified in 587 B.C.
"Quirinus" of Rome was crucified in 506 B.C.
"Indra" of Thibet was crucified in 725 B.C.
"Alcestos" was crucified in 600 B.C.
"Atys" of Phrygia was crucified in 1170 B.C.
"Crite" of the Chaldeans was crucified in 1200 B.C.
"Bali" of Orissa was crucified in 725 B.C.
"Mithra" of Persia was crucified in 600 B.C.
All these other fellows were "supernaturally-born" combinations of "god" and a man, and they all, came to "save" the world. And they all got crucified too. These names and facts are very carefully concealed by those teaching "supernaturally-revealed" religion though, and I think it just as well that my students know the facts as they exist. It is interesting to note that history discloses the fact of the crucifixions of all of these supposed "world-saviours," BUT IT DOES NOT RECORD THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. That is mighty significant. Neither does it record his "supernatural birth," nor does it mention his life. It knows nothing of the crucifixion, nor the resurrection, nor the ascension, nor the falling stars, nor the dead people climbing out of their graves. History is silent on this whole Christ story, and it has never been explained to me by any theologian why that should be. To me it just simply means that these marvelous things DID NOT HAPPEN.
But let us get back again. I said to you that "supernatural" revelation had had lots of chance to prove its claims, and I say here that it has utterly failed to do so. The answer to the problem DOES NOT LIE IN THE SUPERNATURAL REALM AT ALL. It lies in the natural realm if ever it is to be found anywhere. And we are fast finding that out too. At this point I am going to go into one of the "supernaturally-revealed" stories, and show you how, although but allegory, the basic fundamental idea behind the story might very well be true, and may I ask you to please follow me very closely, for it ties in with the rest of these Lessons in a very remarkable manner. Also it corroborates very c}early the message of Life I am giving to you.
I am not quoting from this Bible story because I believe it to be true for I know that it is not true, as written. I know that the Master Intelligence which created this earth--yon nebulae--yon planets with their satellites, did NOT engage in a conversation with a talking snake. I KNOW that is not a fact. I know further that it is not a fact that this great LIFE SPIRIT made a mistake when he created man, first pronouncing the creation "GOOD" and then discovering his mistake, pronounced it very wicked, and drowning them all out in a terrible flood. I KNOW that did not happen. Spiritual or God-Law does not operate that way. However, the Bible says it does so either the Bible or I am wrong. I leave it to my students to be the judge.
We shall look into the story however, for it's worth while analyzing and it gives perhaps the spiritual cause for mans "fall" if he ever had a "fall." Personally I don't believe he did. I believe it has been one continuous and incessant climb from the lower to the higher. We know positively that man is a product of evolution, and we know that he has never retrogressed. This Bible story, however deals with the "changes in manifestation from the spiritual to the physical, so I want to look into it at some length. Later on in this series of Lessons, I shall give you the scientific understanding of it, and that will be far more interesting, and far more true. There is an element of truth in this Bible story however, and I particularly want my students to be familiar with this phase of it. It bears heavily on your intelligent understanding of the Spiritual GOD-LAW, and while it may seem a little out of place perhaps to study any part of the Bible here, yet later you will see the wisdom of my doing so. Here it is and remember we are now dealing with the creation and fall of man.
The creation of man is not so important, but the fall is very important. Once more we find opinions differing as to how man was actually created. The story as given us by Moses was that God made man from the dust of the ground.
That statement to the Scientist and trained Psychologist is probably literally correct. But not in the way it is interpreted by those who believe in the word for word interpretation of this story of the creation as Moses gave it to us. I shall not take time here to enter into a scientific discussion of this question, as it is far too deep for this sort of a work. Those who believe the Moses story verbatim will probably fail to see what I mean when I state that the story is scientifically correct.
But it is---so we shall let it go at that. We have seen so far that God is Spirit, and there is no record to date of anyone having seen God as such. Not even Jesus ever saw the Living God. Furthermore, the scriptures teach that "no man hath seen God at any time." Moses stated that God formed man out of the dust of the ground, but God being SPIRIT, we cannot believe that He, with physical hands, moulded and shaped the dust or earth into the shape of a physical man, and then, when the man was made in earth, breathed into his nose the "breath of life." From what we have learned so far of what God essentially is, that would have been a physical impossibility. And besides---we shall see a little later that God does not create things in that manner.
So it seems that we must look for another explanation of the creation of man, other than the one given us by Moses. As far as the creation of woman goes, I personally cannot accept that, either. Moses says that God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and, when fast asleep, took a rib from his side and made a woman. It would have been far more simple for God to have made both man and woman out of dust at the same time, than for Him to have performed such a delicate operation as removing a rib and then transforming the rib into a woman.
However, probably the whole story of creation as Moses wrote it was only according to the wisdom of his day, and we shall not spend any more time discussing it---especially when we have a subject of far greater importance to discuss in this Lesson.
We are told that after God had finished His creation of man and woman He planted a garden and placed both the man and the woman in it to care for it. Now please remember at this point that there was not another human soul on this earth but this couple. Then, we are told, God gave to this couple certain things to do, telling them just what they could do and just what they could NOT do. From here on I shall ask you to follow me very closely please. for to grasp the following truths fully gives one a grasp on this "so-called" fall of man that he has never had before.
Here they were, the man and the woman, fresh from the hand of the Living God, and both in each other's presence, NAKED AND NOT KNOWING IT. Now I ask you to try and conceive of what sort of a being a man and woman would be, to be both together and naked, AND NOT BE ABLE TO COMPREHEND THE FACT THAT THEY WERE NAKED. For it was not 'til later that they knew they were naked.
Spend a little time in thought here, and try to imagine a couple so constituted that the presence of each other in a naked condition had no effect upon them at all. In fact, THEY DID NOT KNOW THEMSELVES THAT THEY WERE NAKED. Now listen a moment, please, I want to ask you a question here. Suppose for a moment that you and I were of such mentality that we could be placed in the same position as this first created couple were, AND NO THOUGHT OF THE PHYSICAL EVER ENTER OUR MINDS.
We would be a pretty spiritually minded couple, would we not? The fact of the matter is, however, that the first created couple, as this mighty Life Spirit made them, HAD NO SENSE OF THE PHYSICAL AT ALL.
They could not even see the physical. For had they been able to see each other as fleshly bodies, they would have known that they were unclothed. BUT THEY KNEW IT NOT. I am of the opinion here that they were purely spiritual creations, having no such thing as a physical body at all---either that, or they possessed a physical body and were not conscious of it, which means the same thing. I am of the further opinion that this part of the creation of man is identical to the part of the creation of the universe UP TO THE TIME GOD CALLED IT INTO EXISTENCE BY WORD OF MOUTH. We have very plainly seen that the initial creation of the earth was a mental creation. I believe the story of the creation of man up to this point to be similar creation. It could not have been any other kind.
Now we shall see what happened to cause man to become a physical being, and what caused that event to take place. What a pity it is that the event ever took place---but it did---there is no denying that fact. The next step in the story of man's creation (for you must remember that he is not yet in the form in which we have him today) runs about as follows: This first created man and woman had been told by this mighty Life Spirit which had created them that there were certain things which they MUST NOT DO.
Whether it was a literal apple tree or a literal gooseberry bush does not enter into the discussion at all. It makes no difference whether it was such or whether it was not. The fact of prime importance here is the fact that GOD TOLD THIS MAN AND THIS WOMAN THAT IF THEY DID CERTAIN THINGS, INEVITABLE DEATH WOULD FOLLOW. That is the prime factor just here. (And in passing let me call the student's attention to the fact that instead of the opening of the eyes of the man and woman bringing LIFE to them---it brought DEATH. Now note carefully;- THIS DEATH IS WHAT WE CALL LIFE TODAY.)
And then we are told God left them alone. We are to presume here that both the man and the woman BELIEVED GOD when He informed them that they would die if they did a certain thing---disobeyed Him.
At this point there comes into the picture a sinister figure--- and a figure that is responsible for the entire suffering of the human race to date. Moses says a serpent entered the garden. It makes no difference whether it was a snake or a porcupine that actually entered this garden where those two created beings of God were. The whole picture is entirely illustrative.
This snake, or whatever it might have been, speaking physically, went to the man and the woman, and asked them if it were a fact that God had told them that they would die if they did a certain thing. It makes no difference if that thing were the eating of an apple or anything else---remember that. The actual act is beside the point.
On being told that it was a fact that God had so informed this man and woman, this snake, or something it represents, said unto the couple, in effect: "DID GOD SAY THAT YOU WOULD DIE? WELL, THAT ISN'T SO. DON'T WORRY ABOUT THAT. YOU WON'T DIE." Now, beloved student, hear me well. HAD THAT MAN AND THAT WOMAN THEN AND THERE HAVE SAID TO THE SNAKE "OH, YES, WE WILL DIE---GOD SAID SO," I should not be here writing this to you, and neither would you be in your room reading it.
NEITHER WOULD THERE BE A SINGLE SOLITARY THING IN THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE CONTRARY TO THE GREAT, IMMUTABLE GOD---NOT EXCEPTING THE EARTH ITSELF---for this entire world as we have it today is, in itself, contrary to and opposed to the great spiritual God. Had there been no disobedience on the part of that first couple, there would be nothing PHYSICAL IN THE ENTIRE CREATION. Remember that.
Had this man and woman taken THAT stand---how different it all would have been; but they didn't, and right here is the ACTUAL DEED THAT BROUGHT UPON THIS EARTH ALL THE MISERY, POVERTY, SICKNESS AND DEATH IT HAS EVER SEEN. AND THE FACT OR DEED WHICH CAUSED IT ALL WAS THE FACT THAT THE MAN AND WOMAN BELIEVED THE SNAKE IN PREFERENCE TO BELIEVING GOD. Do you see that?
Not only did they choose to believe the serpent, or what it represents, but they deliberately SHOWED THEIR DISBELIEF IN THE SPOKEN WORDS OF GOD BY ACTUALLY DOING THE VERY THING THAT GOD HAD COMMANDED THEM NOT TO DO. In other words. they showed this mighty Spirit that had created them that they would rather OBEY SOMEONE ELSE THAN HIM.
Now listen to what happened---and listen well. THE MOMENT THEY DELIBERATELY CHOSE TO OBEY THE SNAKE RATHER THAN GOD, AND THE MOMENT THEY ACTUALLY DISOBEYED GOD, THEIR EYES WERE OPENED AND THEY KNEW THEY WERE NAKED. If their eyes at this point were opened, then it must follow that they had been "closed" up to this point. Now just what effect did the opening of their eyes have on them? Only one effect, and that terrible in its consequences.
IT GAVE THEM THE CONSCIOUSNESS OF PHYSICAL EXISTENCE WHICH UP TO THAT POINT THEY HAD NEVER KNOWN. So you see, prior to the disobedience of God, there was NO SUCH A THING AS PHYSICAL CONSCIOUSNESS. THAT came when man's eyes were opened. And I shall state, in passing here, that when the same eyes are closed that were opened in the garden, then, and only then, can man be what he was before the "fall." This, Jesus came to do, as we shall see later.
What happened from that time on is more or less history, and we shall not concern ourselves with it here. The purpose of this Lesson is to show you the mighty significance of the fact of the "fall" of man, so that you may intelligently understand it, and understand the things which are to be told you further along in your studies.
What a simple thing it seems to listen to this story of the "fall" of man--- and yet what vital truths are herein contained.
By this time you are beginning to grasp the truth as it has been presented to you, and as you slowly, but surely, grasp it, you will most assuredly see that this earth, and everything connected with it is the result of unbelief. You will also begin to grasp the truth that whatsoever we have on this earth is ONLY SECONDARY TO THINGS AS THEY REALLY ARE. The REAL things are the UNSEEN things. The things which are seen are temporal---but the things which are UNSEEN ----are eternal.
Another thing you can see is the fact that if the opening of the eyes of man to physical things closed his eyes to spiritual things, or. in other words, to THINGS AS THEY ARE, then, as long as we are physical, OUR EYES WILL STILL BE CLOSED TO THE REAL OR THE SPIRITUAL THINGS.
This, you will see, is the spiritual interpretation I put on the bible story of the creation and fall of man. It is a wonderful allegory. But truth is oft times veiled in myth and allegory, and you will do well to carry this picture in your mind, for it is in a way correct. It will help you later though, when I give you the true and the scientific explanation of the whole matter.
Now your exercises for the next two weeks are to be the very same as they have been. You are to keep constantly before you and in your thoughts, the thing you want to manifest in your life. As we progress, you will see the principle involved, and finally, the whole question will open up like a rose, and you will see the reason for what you are doing now. You are now releasing your DESIRES into the vast Cosmic---or God-Realm, and let me say to you that such desires, reaching the COSMIC-GOD, are ALWAYS REALIZED. Think over that for a moment. THEY ARE ALWAYS REALIZED. That is the Law or the Cosmic Realm. That is the Law or the great Life Spirit. That is the Law of God. THAT IS GOD.
The more earnestness you put into your thoughts and desires and affirmations, the faster will you progress towards your goal, and don't forget that while these exercises may seem simple, they are far from that, for they are spiritual or unseen exercises dealing with spiritual or unseen things, and remember. the spiritual realm is the realm from hence all physical manifestations come. I shall leave you here for two weeks. Be earnest. Be insistent. Be constant. DRIVE THE "THOUGHTS" INTO THE COSMIC OR GOD-RESERVOIR THAT WHAT YOU WANT TO BE IS ON ITS WAY TO YOU NOW. And it won't be long after the God-Law has begun to operate until you KNOW what is happening.
Cordially your friend.
SPECIAL FOR THIS LESSON
In addition to continuing the exercises as given in the previous lessons I want you to thoroughly memorize this little verse during the next two weeks.
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
It matters not how strait the gate
How charged with punishment the scroll,
I am the master of my Fate;
I am the Captain of my Soul.
W. E. Henley.
EXAMINATION QUESTIONS FOR LESSON NO. 8
These examination questions are for your benefit and you should know the answers to them all. If they are not clear to you, read your Lesson again and again until they are clear.
1. Scientists are now nearly all agreed that behind the physical and material universe there moves a great unseen Force. Have we any ACTUAL EVIDENCE of such an unseen force?
2. Where must the inception of every physical or material thing be sought?
3. Compare the Bible story of the Fall of Jericho with the facts as disclosed by recent investigations and excavations.
4. That something has never occurred to date is no ground for asserting that it never can occur?
5. In what connection was the above statement made?
6. Does history record the crucifixion of any alleged "world-saviours"? How many?
7. Does history record the crucifixion of Christ?
8. Does history record any of the marvelous occurrences relating to Christ that are related in the Bible?
9. Between what years are the crucifixions of 14 alleged "world-saviours" recorded by history?
10. The Bible story of the "Fall of Man" is susceptible of a spiritual interpretation. Can you give it?
11. If the "opening of the eyes" of man to physical things "closed his eyes" to spiritual things, what conclusion must be drawn with reference to our present condition?
12. Can you repeat any of the stanzas of Henley's poem entitled "INVICTUS"?