Source: "Teachings of an Initiate" by Max Heindel
This volume of the writings of Max Heindel, the Western Mystic, is the
concluding number embodying the messages he sent out through monthly lessons
to his students. These lessons, reprinted since this great soul was called
to a greater work in the higher worlds on January 6th, 1919, may be found in
the following books in addition to the present volume: "Freemasonry and Ca-
tholicism"; "The Web of Destiny"; "The Mystical Interpretation of
Christmas"; "The Mysteries of the Great Operas"; "The Gleanings of a
Mystic"; and "Letters to Students." These writings comprise the later in-
vestigations of this seer.
The helpful messages and the spiritual encouragement that the readers
have received from the inspired words in the earlier volumes we know have
been far-reaching in their effects. We also feel that in years to come en-
lightened and advanced students and seekers along mystical and occult lines
will realize more and more the true value of the works of Max Heindel. His
words reach the very depths of the heart of the reader. Many who have read
his first work, "The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception," have been thrilled by
their contact with it.
Max Heindel, who was the authorized messenger of the true Rosicrucian
Brotherhood, lived the teachings which he taught. Only one who has suffered
as he suffered during his lifetime is able to touch the heart strings of hu-
manity. Only he who has felt the labor pains of spiritual birth which has
admitted him to the realms of the soul can write with the power to thrill
his readers. As the result of such a spiritual birth the writings which Max
Heindel has bequeathed to humanity will live and bear fruit. May the read-
ers of this book feel the heart throbs of this great lover of humanity, who
sacrificed his very physical existence in his desire to impart to man the
wonderful truths which he had garnered through his contact with the Elder
Brothers of the Rosicrucian Order.
--August Foss Heindel
THE DAYS OF NOAH AND OF CHRIST:
When Nicodemus came to Christ and was told about the necessity of re-
birth, he asked, "How can these things be?" And we also with out inquiring
minds are often anxious for more light upon the various teachings concerning
our future. It helps us if we can feel that these teachings fit into
physical facts as we know them. Then we seem to have firmer ground for our
faith in other things which we have not yet proved.
It has been the writer's work to investigate spiritual facts and corre-
late them with the physical in such a manner as would appeal to the reason
and thus pave the way for belief. In this way it has been his privilege to
give light to seeking souls on many of the mysteries of life. Recently a
new discovery was made which, though it seemed as remote from connection
with the coming of Christ as east is from west, throws considerable light on
that event, especially on the manner of our meeting with the Lord "in the
twinkling of an eye" as the Bible has it. Our students well know how dis-
tasteful it is to the writer to relate personal experiences, but sometimes,
as in the present case, it seems necessary, and we shall crave indulgence
for using the personal pronoun while relating to the incident.
One night some time ago while in transit to a place in a far country
where I had a mission to perform, I heard a cry. Though the human voice can
be heard only in air, there are overtones which are heard in the spiritual
realms at distances exceeding those traversed by wireless messages. The cry
was close by, however, and I was on the scene in an instant, but not soon
enough to give the needed help. I found a man sliding down a slanting em-
bankment, bare of vegetation, perhaps a dozen feet in width, and as it
proved on subsequent examination, almost smooth, and without a fissure which
would have afforded a hold for his fingers. To have saved him would have
involved materialization of both arms and shoulders, but there was no time.
In a moment he had slid over the overhanging precipice and was falling to
the floor of the canyon below, probably several thousand feet, though I am
not certain, being a poor judge of distance.
Prompted by a natural spirit of fellow feeling I followed and on the way
observed the phenomenon which is the basis of this article, namely, that
when the body had attained a considerable velocity, the ethers composing the
vital body commenced to ooze out, and when the body crashed into the rocks
below, a mangled mass, there was very little of any ether left in it.
Gradually, however, the ethers drifted together, took form, and hovered with
the finer vehicles above the mangled corpse; but the man was in a stupor un-
able to sense or realize the fact of his altered condition.
As soon as I saw that he was beyond present help I went on; but on think-
ing the matter over it dawned on me that something unusual had happened and
that it was my duty to find out if the ethers left that way in every one who
feel, and if so, why. Under old-time conditions this would have been dif-
ficult, but the advent of the flying machine claims many victims, especially
in these unfortunate war times. It was therefore easy to ascertain the fact
that when a falling body has attained a certain velocity, the higher ethers
leave the dense body, and the falling man becomes insensible. As the body
reaches the ground, it is mangled, but the poor man may regain consciousness
when the ether has reorganized itself. He will then begin to suffer from
the physical consequences of the fall. If the fall continues after the
higher ethers have left, the increased velocity dislodges the lower ethers,
and the Silver Cord is all that remains attached to the body. This is rup-
tured at the moment of impact with the ground, and the seed atom passes on
to the breaking point, where it is held in the usual way.
From these facts we came to the conclusion that it is the normal air
pressure which holds the vital body within the dense. When we move with an
abnormal velocity, the pressure is removed from some parts of the body and a
partial vacuum formed, with the further result that the ethers leave the
body and flow into this vacuum. The two higher ethers, which are most
loosely bound, are the first to disappear and leave the man senseless after
they have produced the panorama of life in a flash. Then if the fall con-
tinues to increase the air pressure in front of the body and the vacuum be-
hind, the more closely bound lower ethers are also forced out, and the body
is dead before it reaches the ground.
It was found by examining a number of people in normal health that each
of the prismatic atoms composing the lower ethers radiated from itself the
lines of force which set spinning the physical atoms in which it is in-
serted, enduing the hole body with life. The united trend of all these
units of force is toward the periphery of the body, where they constitute
what has been called the "Odic Fluid," also designated by other names. When
the air pressure from without is lowered by residence in a high altitude, a
tendency to nervousness becomes manifest because the etheric force from
within ruses outward unchecked; and were the man not able to shut off the
outflow of solar energy in part by an effort of will to overcome the dif-
ficulty, no one could live in such places.
We had heard of "shell shock" and we were aware that numbers of people
who had not even the slightest wound were found dead on the battle field.
In fact, we had seen and spoken with people who had passed out in this
manner but were at a loss to know why death has resulted. They all dis-
claimed fear and were unanimously in their assertion that they had suddenly
become unconscious and a moment later they had found themselves in that they
had not a single scratch on their bodies. Our preconceived idea that it
must have been a momentary fear at a particularly close call which though
unrealized, had caused their demise, prevented a full investigation; but the
ascertained results of the consequences of a fall led us to believe that
something similar might take place in this connection, and this surmise
proved to be correct.
When a large projectile passes through the air, it creates a vacuum be-
hind it by the enormous velocity wherewith it moves, and if a person is
within this vacuum zone while the shell is passing, he suffers in a measure
determined by his own nature and his proximity to the center of suction.
His position is in fact a reverse replica of the man who falls; for he
stands still while a moving body removes the air pressure and allows the
ethers to escape. If the amount of ether dislocated is comparatively slight
and is composed only of the third and fourth ethers which govern sense per-
ception and memory, he will probably suffer only a temporary loss of memory
and inability to sense things or move. This disability will disappear when
the extracted ethers are again fitted inside the dense body--a much more
difficult achievement than where the physical body succumbs and the reorga-
nization takes place without reference to that vehicle.
Had the people thus hurt learned now to perform the exercises which
separate the higher and lower ethers, they might have found themselves out-
side the body in full consciousness and perhaps ready for their first soul
flight if they had had the courage to undertake it. However that may be, it
is safe to say that on their return to the dense body they would have expe-
rienced very little if any inconvenience, and in case the vacuum had been
strong enough to extract all four ethers and cause death, there would prob-
ably have been no unconsciousness such as overtakes the ordinary person; for
it was discovered that the people who said that they felt unconscious for a
moment only were wrong. It required a time varying from one to several days
in the cases we investigated before the vital body was reorganized and con-
Let us now see what bearing these newly discovered facts have on the com-
ing of Christ and our meeting with Him. While we lived in ancient Atlantis
in the basins of the earth, pressure of the moisture-laden mist was very
heavy. This hardened the dense body, and as a further result the vibrations
of the interpenetrating finer vehicles were considerably slowed down. This
was especially true of the vital body, which is made of ether, a grade of
matter belonging to the physical world and subject to some of the physical
laws. The solar life did not penetrate the dense mist in the same abundance
as is present in the clear atmosphere of today. Add to this the fact that
the vital bodies of that day were almost entirely composed of the two lower
ethers, which further assimilation and reproduction, and we shall understand
that progress was very slow. Man lad mainly a vegetative existence, and his
main exertions were devoted to the purpose of obtaining food and reproducing
Had such a man been removed to our atmosphere conditions the, lack of ex-
terior pressure would have resulted in an outflowing of the vital body which
means death. Gradually the physical body grew less dense and the amount of
the two higher ethers increased, so that man become fitted to live in a
clear atmosphere under a decreased pressure such as we have enjoyed since
the historical event known as the "Flood" when the mist condensed. Since
that time we have also been able to specialize more of the solar life force.
The larger proportion of the two higher ethers now found in our vital bodies
enables us to express the higher human attributes appropriate to the devel-
opment of this age.
The vibrations of the vital body under the present atmospheric conditions
have enabled the spirit to build that which we call civilization, consisting
of industrial and artistic achievements and of moral and spiritual stan-
dards, the industrial and moral excellence being as closely connect and in-
terdependent as the artistic achievement is dependent on a spiritual concep-
tion. Industry is designed to develop the moral side of man's nature, art
to unfold the spiritual. Thus we are now being prepared for the next step
in our unfoldment.
Let it now be remembered that the qualifications necessary for our eman-
cipation from the conditions prevailing in Atlantis were party physiologi-
cal; we had to evolve lungs to breathe the pure air in which we are now im-
mersed and which allows the vital body to vibrate at a more rapid rate than
did the heavy moisture of Atlantis. With this in mind we shall readily see
that future advancement lies in freeing the vital body entirely from the
trammels of the dense body and letting it vibrate in pure air.
This is what happened in the lofty altitude exoterically known as the
"Mount of Transfiguration." Advanced men of various ages, Moses, Elijah,
and Jesus (or rather the body of Jesus ensouled by Christ) appeared in the
luminous garment of the liberated soul body, which all will wear in the New
Galilee, the Kingdom of Christ. "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the king-
dom,: for it would interfere with the spiritual progress of the day; so when
Christ appears we must be prepared with a soul body and thus be ready to
part from out dense body to be "caught up and meet Him in the air."
The results of the investigation which form the basis of the present ar-
ticle may give us an insight into the method of transition when compared
with the information given in the Bible. It is said that the Lord will
appear with a mighty sound like the voice of an Archangel. We read of thun-
ders and the blasts of trumpets in connection with the event. A sound is an
atmospheric disturbance, and since the passage of a projectile made by man
can lift the vital bodies of soldiers out of their dense bodies, it needs to
argument to prove that the shout of a superhuman voice could accomplish
similar results more efficiently--"in the twinkling of an eye."
"When shall these things be?" asked the disciples. They were told that
as it was in the days of Noah (when the Aryan Epoch was about to be ushered
in), so should it be in the Day of Christ. They ate and drank, they married
and were given in marriage. But some who perhaps seemed not so different
from the rest, had evolved the all-important lungs so that when the atmo-
sphere cleared they were able to breathe pure air, while others who had only
the gill clefts perished. In the Day of Christ when His voice sounds the
Call, there will be some who will find themselves with a properly organized
soul body, able to ascent above the discarded dense bodies, while others
will be like the soldiers who meet death from "shell shock" on the battle
May we prepare for that day by following in His steps.
THE SIGN OF THE MASTER:
There are at the present time many who, judging from the signs of the
times, believe Christ to be at the door and are watching him in joyful an-
ticipation. Though, in the opinion of the writer, the "things which must
first come to pass" have not taken place in many important particulars, we
must not forget that He gave warning that "as it was in the days of Noah, so
shall be in the day of the Son of Man." Then they ate, drank, and made
merry; they married and were given in marriage up to the very moment when
the flood descended and engulfed them. Only a small remnant was saved.
Therefore we who pray for His coming will do well to watch also lest our
prayers be answered before we are ready, for He said, "The day of the Lord
will come as a thief in the night."
But there is also another danger, a very great danger which He pointed
out, namely, "There shall be false Christs;" and "they shall deceive even
the very elect, if that were possible." So we are warned that if people
say, "Christ is here in the city or there in the desert," we are not to go,
or we shall certainly be deceived.
But on the other hand, if we do not investigate, how shall we know? May
we not run the risk of rejecting Christ by refusing to hear all claimants
and judging each according to merits? When we examine the injunctions of
the Bible upon this point, they seem bewildering and altogether subversive
of the end they are supposed to help us attain, and the great question,: How
shall we know Christ at His coming?" is still rife. We have issued a pam-
phlet on this subject but feel sure additional light will be welcome to all.
Christ said that some of the false Christs would work signs and wonders.
He always refused to prove His divinity in that sordid manner when asked to
do so by the scribes and Pharisees, because He knew that phenomena only ex-
cited the sense of wonder and whetted the appetite for more. Those who wit-
ness such manifestations are sometimes sincere in their efforts to convince
others but they are generally met with an attitude of mind which says in ef-
fect: "You say you have seem him do so and so and therefore you believe.
Very well! I also am willing to be convinced. Let him show me."
But even supposing a Master were willing to prove his identity, who among
the multitude is qualified to judge the validity of the proof? No one! Who
knows the sign of the Master when he sees it? The sign of the Master is not
a phenomenon which may be repudiated or explained away by the sophists, nei-
ther is it something the Master may show or hide as he pleases, nor can he
take it up and lay it aside at will. He is forced to carry it with him al-
ways as we carry out arms and limbs. It would be just as impossible to hide
the sign of the Master from those qualified to see, know and judge it as it
would be for us to hide our members, from anyone who has physical sight. On
the other hand, as the sign of the Master is spiritual, it must be spiritu-
ally perceived, and it is therefore is impossible to show the sign of the
Master to those who lack spiritual sight as it is to show a physical figure
to the physically blind.
Therefore we read: "A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a
sign, and there shall no sign be given unto it." A little further on in the
same chapter (Matt. 16) we find the Christ asking His disciples, "Whom do
men say that I, the Son of Man, am?" The answer developed that though the
Jews saw in Him a superior person, Moses, Elias, or one of the prophets,
they were incapable of recognizing His true character. They could not see
the sign of the Master, or they would have needed no other testimony.
Christ then turned to His disciples and asked them, "But whom say ye that
I am?" And from Peter came the answer weighted with conviction, quick and
to the point, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God." He had seen
the sign of the Master, and he knew whereof he spoke, independent of
phenomena and exterior circumstances, as emphasized by Christ when He said,
"Blessed art thou, Simon, Son of Jonah, for flesh and blood hath not re-
vealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven." In other words, the
perception of this GREAT TRUTH depended upon an interior qualification.
What this qualification was, and is, we learn from the next words of
Christ: "And I say also unto thee that thou art Peter (PETROS, A ROCK,) and
upon this rock (PETRA) I will build my church."
Christ said concerning the multitude of materialistic Jews: "A wicked
and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign, and there shall no sign be
given unto it but the sign of the prophet Jonah"; and much speculation has
been the consequence among equally materialistic Christians in latter times.
Some have contended that an ordinary whale did swallow the prophet and later
cast him ashore. Churches have divided on this as on many other foolish is-
sues. But when we consult the occult records we find an interpretation
which satisfies the heart without doing violence to the mind.
This great allegory, like so many other myths, is pictured upon the film
of the firmament, for it was first enacted in heaven before it was staged on
the earth, and we still see in the starry sky "Jonah, the Dove," and "Cetus,
the Whale". But we will not concern ourselves so much with the celestial
phase as with its terrestrial application.
"Jonah" means dove, a well recognized symbol of the Holy Spirit. During
the three "days" comprising the Saturn, Sun, and Moon revolutions of the
Earth Period, and the "nights" between, the Holy Spirit with all the Cre-
ative Hierarchies worked in the Great Deep perfecting THE INWARD parts of
the earth and men, removing the dead weight of the moon. Then the earth
emerged from its watery stage of development in the middle Atlantean Epoch,
and so did "Jonah, the Spirit Dove," accomplish the salvation of the greater
part of mankind.
Neither the earth nor its inhabitants were capable of maintaining their
equilibrium in space, and the Cosmic Christ therefore commenced to work with
and on us, finally at the baptism descending AS A DOVE (not in the form of a
dove but AS a dove) upon the man Jesus. And as Jonah, the dove of the Holy
Spirit, was three Days and three Nights in the Great Fish (the earth sub-
merged in water), so at the end of our involutionary pilgrimage must the
other dove, the Christ, enter THE HEART of the earth for the coming three
revolutionary Days and Nights to give us the needed impulse on our evolu-
tionary journey. He must help us to etherealize the earth in preparation
for the Jupiter Period.
Thus Jesus become at his baptism, "a Son of the Dove," and was recognized
by another, "Simon Bar-Jonah," (Simon, son of the dove). At that recogni-
tion, by the sign of the dove, the Master calls the other "a rock," a foun-
dation Stone, and promises him the "Keys to Heaven." These are not idle
words nor haphazard promises. These are phases of soul development involved
which each must undergo if he has not passed them.
What then is the "sign of Jonah" which the Christ bore about with Him,
visible to all who could see, other than the "house from heaven" wherewith
Paul longed to be clothed; the glorious treasure house wherein all the noble
deeds of many lives glitter and glisten as precious pearls? Everybody has a
little "house from heaven." Jesus, holy and pure beyond the rest, probably
was a splendid sight, but think how indescribably effulgent must have been
the vehicle of splendor in which the Christ descended; then we shall have
some conception of the "blindness" of those who asked for "a sing." Even
among His other disciples He found the same spiritual cataract. "Show us
the Father," said Philip, oblivious to the mystic Trinity in Unity which
ought to have been obvious to him. Simon, however, was quick to perceive,
because he himself had by spiritual alchemy made this spiritual petros or
"stone" of the philosopher which entitled him to the "Keys of the Kingdom";
an Initiation making usable the latent powers of the candidate evolved by
We find that these "stones" for the "temple made without hands" undergo
an evolution or process of preparation. There is first the "petros," the
diamond in the rough, so to speak, found in nature. When read with the
heart, such passages as 1st Cor., 10:4, "And did all drink the same
spiritual drink; for they drank of that spiritual Rock (Petros) that fol-
lowed them: and that Rock was Christ," are illuminating in this connection.
Gradually, very gradually, we have become impregnated with the WATER OF LIFE
which sprang from the Great Rock. We have also become polished as "lithoi
zontes" (LIVING STONES), destined to be grouped with that GREAT STONE which
the Builder rejected; and when we have wrought well to the end, we shall fi-
nally receive in the Kingdom the diadem, the most precious of all, the
"psiphon leuken," (the white stone) with its New Name.
There are three steps in the evolution of "THE STONE OF THE SAGE":
PETROS, the hard rough rock; LITHON, the stone polished by service and ready
to be written on; and PSIPHON LEUKEN, the soft white stone that draws to it-
self all who are weak and heavy laden. Much is hidden in the nature and
composition of the stone at each step which cannot be written; it must be
read between the lines.
If we hope to build the Living Temple with Christ in the Kingdom, we
would do well to prepare ourselves that we may fit in, and then we shall
know the Master and the Sign of the Master.
WHAT IS SPIRITUAL WORK?:
In this connection we will give some extracts from the wonderful poem by
Longfellow which is called "The Legend Beautiful."
"In his chamber all alone,
Kneeling on the floor of stone
Prayed the Monk in deep contrition
For his sins of indecision,
Prayed for greater self-denial
In temptation and in trial;
It was noonday by the dial,
And the Monk was all alone.
"Suddenly, as if it lightened,
An unwonted splendor brightened
All within him and without him
In that narrow cell of stone;
And he saw the Blessed Vision
Of our Lord, with Light Elysian
Like a vesture wrapped about him,
Like a garment round him thrown."
This was not the suffering Savior, however, but the Christ feeding the
hungry and healing the sick.
"In an attitude imploring,
Hands upon his bosom crossed,
Wondering, worshiping, adoring,
Knelt the Monk in rapture lost.
* * * * * *
"Then amid his exaltation,
Loud the convent bell appalling,
From its belfry calling, calling,
Rang through court and corridor
With persistent iteration
He had never heard before."
This was his call to the duty of feeding the poor as Christ had done, for
he was the almoner of the Brotherhood.
"Deep distress and hesitation
Mingled with his adoration;
Should be go, or should he stay?
Should he leave the poor to wait
Hungry at the convent gate,
Till the Vision passed away?
Should be slight his radiant guest,
Slight his visitant celestial,
For a crowd or ragged, bestial
Beggars at the convent gate?
Would the Vision there remain?
Would the Vision come again?
Then a voice within his breast
Whispered, audible and clear
As if to the outward ear:
'Do they duty; that is best;
Leave unto they Lord the rest!'
Straightaway to his feet he started,
And with longing look intent
On the Blessed Vision bent,
Slowly from his cell departed,
Slowly on his errand went.
"At the gate the poor were waiting,
Looking through the iron grating,
With that terror in the eye
That is only seen in those
Who amid their wants and woes
Hear the sound of doors that close,
And of feet that pass them by;
Grown familiar with disfavor,
Grown familiar with the savor
Of the broad by which men die!
But today, they knew not why,
Like the gate of Paradise
Seemed the convent gate to rise,
Like a sacrament divine
Seemed to them the bread and wine.
In his heart the Monk was praying,
Thinking of the homeless poor,
What they suffer and endure;
What we see not, what we see;
And the inward voice was saying:
'Whatsoever thing thou doest
To the least of mine and lowest,
That doest unto me!'
"Unto me! but had the Vision
Come to him in beggar's clothing,
Come to mendicant imploring,
Would he then have knelt adoring,
Or have listened with derision,
And have turned away with loathing?
"Thus his conscience put the question,
Full of troublesome suggestion,
As at length, with hurried pace,
Towards his cell he turned his face,
And beheld the convent bright
With supernatural light,
Like a luminous cloud expanding
Over floor and wall and ceiling.
"But he passed with awe-struck feeling
At the threshold of this door,
For the Vision still was standing
As he left it there before,
When the convent bell appalling,
From its belfry calling, calling,
Summoned him to feed the poor.
Through the long hour intervening
It had waited his return,
And he felt his bosom burn,
Comprehending all the meaning,
When the Blessed Vision said,
`Hadst thou stayed, I must have fled!"
Let me tell you a story:
Ages and ages ago--so long ago in fact that it was almost as far away as
yesterday--darkness enveloped the earth, and men were groping for the light.
Some there were who had found it and who undertook to show men the reflec-
tion thereof, and they were eagerly sought. Among them there was one who
had been to the city of light for a little while and had absorbed some of
its brilliancy. Straightway men and women from all over the land of dark-
ness sought him. They journeyed thousands of miles because they had heard
of this light; and when he heard that a company was traveling towards his
house, he set to work and prepared to give them the very best he had. He
planted poles all around his house and put lights upon them so that his
visitors might not hurt themselves in the darkness. He and his household
ministered to their wants, and he taught them as best he knew.
But soon sine if his visitors murmured. They had thought to find him
seated upon a pedestal radiant with celestial light. In fancy they had seen
themselves worshiping at his shrine; but instead of the spiritual light they
had expected they had caught him in the very act of stringing electric
lights to illuminate the place. He did not even wear a turban or a robe,
because, THE ORDER TO WHICH HE BELONGED HAD AS ONE ITS FUNDAMENTAL RULES
THAT IS MEMBERS MUST WEAR THE DRESS OF THE COUNTRY IN WHICH THEY LIVED.
So the visitors came to the conclusion that they had been tricked and
swindled and that he had no light. They they took up stones and stoned him
and his household; they would have killed him had it not been that they
feared the law, which in that land required an eye for an eye and a tooth
for a tooth. Then they went away again into the land of the darkness, and
whenever they saw a soul headed towards the light, they help up their hands
in horror and said, "Do not go there; that is not a true light, it is as a
jack-o-lantern and it will lead you astray. We know there is absolutely no
spirituality there." Many believed them, and thus came to pass in that
case, as so many times before, the saying that was written in one of their
old books: "This is the condemnation, that light has come into the world
but men love darkness rather than light."
As it was in that far-away yesterday, so also it is today. Men are run-
ning hither and thither seeking for light. Often like Sir Launfal they
travel to the ends of the earth, wasting their whole lives seeking for the
thing that they call Spirituality," but melting disappointment after disap-
pointment. But just as Sir Launfal, having spent his whole life in vain
search away from his home, finally found in the HOLY GRAIL right at his own
castle gate, so every honest seeker after spirituality will, shall, and must
find it in his own heart. The only danger is that like the company of seek-
ers mentioned, he may miss it because he does not recognize it. NO ONE CAN
RECOGNIZE TRUE SPIRITUALITY IN OTHERS UNTIL HE HAD IN A MEASURE EVOLVED IT
IN HIS OWN SELF.
It may therefore be well to try to settle definitely, "WHAT IS SPIRITU-
ALITY?" to give a guide whereby we may find this great Christ attribute. In
order to do this we must leave our preconceived ideas behind, or we shall
certainly fail. The idea most commonly held is that spirituality manifests
through prayer and meditation; but if we look at our Savior's life, we shall
find that it was not an idle one. He was not a recluse, He did not go away
and hide Himself from the world. He went among people, He ministered to
their daily wants; He fed them when that was necessary; He healed them when-
ever He had the opportunity, and He also taught them. Thus He was in the
very truest sense of the word A SERVANT OF HUMANITY.
The monk in "THE LEGEND BEAUTIFUL" saw Him thus when he was engaged in
prayer, rapt in spiritual ecstasy. But just then the convent bell struck
the hour of twelve, and IT WAS HIS DUTY TO GO AND IMITATE THE CHRIST, feed-
ing the poor who had gathered around the convent gate. Great indeed was the
temptation to stay, to bathe in the heavenly vibrations,; but there came the
voice, "DO THY DUTY, THAT IS BEST; LEAVE UNTO THY LORD THE REST" How could
he have adored the Savior whom he saw feeding the poor and healing the sick
while at the same time leaving the hungry poor to stand outside the convent
gate waiting for him to perform his duties? It would have been positively
wicked for him to have stayed there; and so the Vision said to him upon his
return: "HAST THOU STAYED, I MUST HAVE FLED."
Such self-indulgence would have been absolutely subversive of the purpose
he had in view. If he had not been faithful in little things pertaining to
earthly duties, how could it be expected that he would be faithful in the
greater spiritual work? Naturally, unless ABLE TO STAND THE TEST, he could
not be given greater powers.
There are many people who seek spiritual powers, wandering from one
so-called occult center to another; who enter monasteries and like places of
seclusion, hoping by running away from the world's clamor and glamour to
cultivate their spiritual nature. They bask in the sunshine of prayer and
meditation from morning till night while the world is moaning in agony.
Then they wonder why they do not progress; why they do not get further upon
the path of aspiration. Truly prayer and meditation are necessary, abso-
lutely essential to soul growth. But we are doomed to failure if we depend
for soul growth upon prayers which are only words. TO OBTAIN RESULTS WE
MUST LIVE IN SUCH A MANNER THAT OUR WHOLE LIFE BECOMES PRAYER, AN ASPIRA-
TION. As Emerson said:
"Although your knees were never bent,
To heaven your hourly prayers are sent,
And be they formed for good or ill,
Are registered and answered still."
It is not the words we speak in moments of prayer that count, but IT IS
THE LIFE THAT LEADS UP TO THE PRAYER.
What is the use of praying for peace on earth on Sunday when we are mak-
ing bullets during the whole week? How can we pray God to forgive us our
trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us when we carry hate in
THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY TO SHOW OUR FAITH, AND THAT IS BY OUR WORKS; It
does not matter in what department of life we have been placed, whether we
are high or low, rich or poor, it is immaterial whether we are engaged in
stringing electric lights to save our fellows a physical fall, or whether it
is our privilege to stand upon a platform to give out the spiritual light
and point out to others the way of the soul. It is absolutely unessential
whether our hands are grimy with the lowest labor, perhaps digging a sewer
to maintain the health of our community, or whether they are soft and white
as required when nursing the sick.
The determining factor which decides whether any class of work is
spiritual or material is our attitude in the matter. The man who strings
the electric lights may be far more spiritual than the one who stands upon
the platform; for alas, there are many who go to that sacred duty with the
desire to tickle the ears of their congregation by fine oratory rather than
to give heart-felt love and sympathy. It is must more noble work to clean
out the clogged sewer, as did THE DESPISED BROTHER in Kennedy's "Servant in
the House," than it is to live falsely in the dignity of a teacher's office,
implying a spirituality that is not actually there. EVERYONE WHO TRIES TO
CULTIVATE THIS RARE QUALITY OF SPIRITUALITY MUST ALWAYS BEGIN BY DOING EV-
ERYTHING TO THE GLORY OF THE LORD; FOR WHEN WE DO ALL THINGS AS UNTO THE
LORD, IT DOES NOT MATTER WHAT KIND OF WORK WE DO. DIGGING A SEWER, INVENT-
ING A LABOR SAVING DEVICE, PREACHING A SERMON, OR ANYTHING ELSE IS SPIRITUAL
WORK WHEN IT IS DONE IN LOVE TO GOD AND MAN.
Continued with file RC1092.TXT"
End of File