The Constitution Of Man
Our chapter head, "the constitution of man," may surprise a reader who has
not previously studied the Mystery teachings, or he may imagine that we
intend to give an anatomical dissertation, but such is not our intention.
We have spoken of the earth upon which we live as being composed of
several invisible realms in addition to the world we perceive by means of
our senses. We have also spoken of man as being correlated to these
various divisions in nature, and a little thought upon the subject will
quickly convince us that in order to function upon the various planes of
existence described, it is necessary that a man should have a body
composed of their substance, or at least have specialized for his own use,
some of the material of each of these worlds.
We have said that finer matter, called desire stuff and mind stuff,
permeates our atmosphere and the solid earth, even as blood percolates
through all parts of our flesh. But that is not a sufficient explanation
to account for all facts of life. If that were all, then minerals, which
are interpenetrated by the world of thought and the world of desire, would
have thoughts and desires as well as man. This is not the case, so
something more than mere interpenetration must be requisite to acquire the
faculties of thought and feeling.
We know that in order to function in this world, to live as a physical
being among other like beings, we must have a physical body all our own,
built of the chemical constituents of this visible world. When we lose it
at death, it profits us nothing that the world is full of just the very
chemicals needed to build such a body. We cannot then specialize them, and
therefore we are invisible to all others. Similarly, if we did not possess
a special body made of ether, we should be unable to grow and to
propagate. That is the case with the mineral. Had we no separate
individual desire body, we should be unable to feel desires and emotions,
there would be no incentive to move from one place to another. We should
then be stationary as plants, and did we not possess a mind, we should be
incapable of thought, and act upon impulse and instinct as animals.
Some one may of course object to this last statement, and contend that
animals do think. So far as our domesticated animals are concerned that is
partially true, but it is not quite in the same way that we think and
reason. The difference may perhaps best be understood if we take an
illustration from the electrical field. When an electric current of high
voltage is passed through a coiled copper wire, and another wire is
placed in the center of the coils, that wire will become charged with
electricity of a lower voltage. So also the animal, when brought within
the sphere of human thoughts, evolves a mental activity of a lower order.
Paul, in his writings, also mentions the natural body and the spiritual
body while the man himself is a spirit inhabiting those vehicles. We will
briefly note the constitution of the various bodies of man invisible to
the physical sight but as objective to spiritual sight as the dense body
to ordinary vision.
Next: The Vital Body
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