Rosicrucian Articles A Description Of The Headquarters Of The Rosicrucian Fellowship
Work in the physical world requires physical means of accompl...
We Do Not Cast Horoscopes
Despite all we can say, many people write enclosing money for...
The Second Heaven
When both the good and evil of a life has been extracted, the...
The Mystery Of Light Color And Consciousness
"God is Light," says the Bible, and we are unable to conceive...
Our Lessons Are Sermons
They embody the highest moral and spiritual principles, toget...
The Desire World
When spiritual sight is developed so that it becomes possible...
Birth And Child Life
It must not be imagined, however, that when the little body o...
The Order Of Rosicrucians And The Rosicrucian Fellowship
The Vital Body
That body of ours which is composed of ether is called the "v...
Education Of Children
Respecting the birth of the various vehicles and the influenc...
After a longer or shorter time there comes in each life a poi...
The Desire Body
In addition to the visible body and the vital body we also ha...
This is the latest acquisition of the human spirit, and in mo...
The Cost Of The Course
There are no fixed fees; no esoteric instruction is ever put ...
The Region Of Concrete Thought
The Region of concrete Thought is neither shadowy nor illusor...
The Problem Of Life
Among all the vicissitudes of life, which vary in each indivi...
The First Heaven
In the first heaven, which is located in the higher regions o...
T He Course In Christian Mysticism
Christ taught the multitude in parables, but explained the my...
The Third Heaven
In the third heaven most people have very little consciousnes...
Our Message And Mission
A Sane Mind
A Soft Heart
A Sound Body
The Desire World
When spiritual sight is developed so that it becomes possible to behold
the Desire World, many wonders confront the newcomer, for conditions are
so widely different from what they are here, that a description must sound
quite as incredible as a fairy tale to anyone who has not himself seen
them. Many cannot even believe that such a world exists, and that other
people can see that which is invisible to them, yet some people are blind
to the beauties of this world which we see. A man who was born blind, may
say to us: I know that this world exists, I can hear, I can smell, I can
taste and above all I can feel but when you speak of light and of color,
they are nonexistent to me. You say that you see these things, I cannot
believe it for I cannot see myself. You say that light and color are all
about me, but none of the senses at my command reveal them to me and I do
not believe that the sense you call sight exists. I think you suffer
from hallucinations. We might sympathize very sincerely with the poor man
who is thus afflicted, but his scepticism, reasonings and objections and
sneers notwithstanding we would be obliged to maintain that we perceive
light and color.
The man whose spiritual sight has been awakened is in a similar position
with respect to those who do not perceive the Desire World of which he
speaks. If the blind man acquires the faculty of sight by an operation,
his eyes are opened and he will be compelled to assert the existence of
light and color which he formerly denied, and when spiritual sight is
acquired by anyone, he also perceives for himself the facts related by
others. Neither is it an argument against the existence of spiritual
realms that seers are at variance in their descriptions of conditions in
the invisible world. We need but to look into books on travel, and compare
stories brought home by explorers of China, India or Africa and we shall
find them differing widely and often contradictory, because each traveler
saw things from his own standpoint, under other conditions than those met
by his brother authors, and we maintain that the man who has read most
widely these varying tales concerning a certain Country and wrestled with
the contradictions of narrators, will have a more comprehensive idea of
the country or people of whom he has read, than the man who has only read
one story assented to by all the authors. Similarly, the varying stories
of visitors to the Desire World are of value, because giving a fuller
view, and more rounded, than if all had seen things from the same angle.
In this world matter and force are widely different. The chief
characteristic of matter here is inertia: the tendency to remain at rest
until acted upon by a force which sets it in motion. In the Desire World,
on the contrary, force and matter are almost indistinguishable one from
the other. We might almost describe desire-stuff as force-matter, for it
is in incessant motion, responsive to the slightest feeling of a vast
multitude of beings which populate this wonderful world in nature. We
often speak of the "teeming millions" of China and India, even of our vast
cities, London, New York, Paris or Chicago, we consider them overcrowded
in the extreme, yet even the densest population of any spot upon earth is
sparsely inhabited compared with the crowded conditions of the Desire
World. No inconvenience is felt by any of the denizens of that realm,
however, for, while in this world two things cannot occupy the same space
at the same time, it is different there. A number of people and things may
exist in the same place at the same time and be engaged in most diverse
activities, regardless of what others are doing, such is the wonderful
elasticity of desire stuff. As an illustration we may mention a case where
the writer while attending religious service, plainly perceived at the
altar certain beings interested in furthering that service and working to
achieve that end. At the same time there drifted through the room and the
altar, a table at which four persons were engaged in playing cards. They
were as oblivious to the existence of the beings engaged in furthering our
religious service, as though these did not exist.
The Desire World is the abode of those who have died, for some time
subsequent to that event, and we may mention in the above connection that
the so-called "dead" very often stay for a long while among their still
living friends. Unseen by their relatives they go about the familiar
rooms. At first they are often unaware of the condition mentioned: "that
two persons may be in the same place at the same time," and when they seat
themselves in a chair or at the table, a living relative may take the
supposedly vacant seat. The man we mistakenly call dead will at first
hurry out of his seat to escape being sat upon, but he soon learns that
being sat upon does not hurt him in his altered condition, and that he may
remain in his chair regardless of the fact that his living relative is
also sitting there.
In the lower regions of the Desire World the whole body of each being may
be seen, but in the highest regions only the head seems to remain.
Raphael, who like many other people in the middle ages was gifted with a
so-called second sight, pictured that condition for us in his Sistine
Madonna, now in the Dresden Art Gallery, where Madonna and the
Christ-child are represented as floating in a golden atmosphere and
surrounded by a host of genie-heads: conditions which the occult
investigator knows to be in harmony with actual facts.
Among the entities who are, so to speak, "native" to that realm of
nature, none are perhaps better known to the Christian world than the
Archangels. These exalted Beings were human at a time in the earth's
history when we were yet plant-like. Since then we have advanced two
steps: through the animal and to the human stage of development. The
present Archangels have also made two steps in progression; one, in which
they were similar to what the angels are now, and another step which made
them what we call Archangels.
Their densest body, though differing from ours in shape, and made of
desire stuff, is used by them as a vehicle of consciousness in the same
manner that we use our body. They are expert manipulators of forces in the
Desire World, and these forces, as we shall see, move all the world to
action. Therefore the Archangels work with humanity industrially and
politically as arbitrators of the destiny of peoples and nations. The
Angels may be said to be family-spirits whose mission is to unite a few
spirits as members of a family, and cement them with ties of blood and
love of kin, while the Archangels may be called race and national spirits,
as they unite whole nations by patriotism or love of home and country.
They are responsible for the rise and fall of nations, they give war or
peace, victory or defeat as it serves the best interests of the people
they rule. This we may see, for instance, from the book of Daniel, where
the Archangel Michael (not to be confounded with the Michael, who is
ambassador from the sun to the earth), is called the prince of the
children of Israel. Another Archangel tells Daniel, (in the tenth chapter)
that he intends to fight the prince of Persia by means of the Greeks.
There are varying grades of intelligence among human beings, some are
qualified to hold high and lofty positions entirely beyond the ability of
others. So it is also among higher beings, not all Archangels are fitted
to govern a nation and rule the destiny of a race, people or tribe, some
are not fitted to rule human beings at all, but as the animals also have a
desire nature these lower grades of Archangels govern the animals as
group-spirits and evolve to higher capacity thereby.
The work of the race spirits is readily observable in the people it
governs. The lower in the scale of evolution the people, the more they
show a certain racial likeness. That is due to the work of the race
spirit. One national spirit is responsible for the swarthy complexion
common to Italians, for instance, while another causes the Scandinavians
to be blond. In the more advanced types of humanity there is a wider
divergence from the common type, due to the individualized Ego, which thus
expresses in form and feature its own particular idiosyncrasies. Among the
lower types of humanity such as Mongolians, native African Negroes and
South Sea Islanders, the resemblance of individuals in each tribe makes it
almost impossible for civilized Westerners to distinguish between them.
Among animals, where the separate spirit is not individualized and
self-conscious, the resemblance is not only much more marked physically
but extends even to traits and characteristics. We may write the biography
of a man, for the experiences of each varies from that of others and his
acts are different, but we cannot write the biography of an animal for
members of each tribe all act alike under similar circumstances. If we
desire to know the facts about Edward VII, it would profit us nothing to
study the life of the Prince-Consort, his father, or of George V, his son,
as both would be entirely different from Edward. In order to find out what
manner of man he was, we must study his own individual life. If, on the
other hand, we wish to know the characteristics of beavers, we may observe
any individual of the tribe, and when we have studied its idiosyncrasies,
we shall know the traits of the whole tribe of beavers. What we call
"instinct," is in reality the dictates of group-spirits which govern
separate individuals of its tribe telepathically, as it were.
The ancient Egyptians knew of these animal group spirits and sketched many
of them, in a crude way, upon their temples and tombs. Such figures with a
human body and an animal head actually live in the desire world. They may
be spoken to, and will be found much more intelligent than the average
That statement brings up another peculiarity of conditions in the Desire
World in respect of language. Here in this World human speech is so
diversified that there are countries where people who live only a few
miles apart speak a dialect so different that they understand each other
with great difficulty, and each nation has its own language that varies
altogether from the speech of other peoples.
In the lower Regions of the Desire World, there is the same diversity of
tongues as on earth, and the so-called "dead" of one nation find it
impossible to converse with those who lived in another country. Hence
linguistic accomplishments are of great value to the "Invisible Helpers",
of whom we shall hear later, as their sphere of usefulness is enormously
extended by that ability.
Even apart from difference of language our mode of speech is exceedingly
productive of misunderstandings. The same words often convey most opposite
ideas to different minds. If we speak of a "body of water", one person may
think we mean a lake of small dimensions, the thoughts of another may be
directed to the great American Lakes and a third person's thoughts may be
turned towards the Atlantic or Pacific Oceans. If we speak of a "light",
one may think of a gas-light, another of an electric Arc-lamp, or if we
say "red", one person may think we mean a delicate shade of pink and
another gets the idea of crimson. The misunderstandings of what words mean
goes even farther, as illustrated in the following.
The writer once opened a reading room in a large city where he lectured,
and invited his audience to make use thereof. Among those who availed
themselves of the opportunity was a gentleman who had for many years been
a veritable "metaphysical tramp," roaming from lecture to lecture, hearing
the teachings of everybody and practicing nothing. Like the Athenians on
Mars' Hill, he was always looking for something "new," particularly in the
line of phenomena, and his mind was in that seething chaotic state which
is one of the most prominent symptoms of "mental indigestion."
Having attended a number of our lectures he knew from the program that:
"The lecturer does not give readings, or cast horoscopes for pay." But
seeing on the door of the newly opened reading room, the legend: "Free
Reading Room," his erratic mind at once jumped to the conclusion that
although we were opposed to telling fortunes for pay, we were now going to
give free readings of the future in the Free Reading Room. He was much
disappointed that we did not intend to tell fortunes, either gratis or for
a consideration, and we changed our sign to "Free Library" in order to
obviate a repetition of the error.
In the higher Regions of the Desire World the confusion of tongues gives
place to a universal mode of expression which absolutely prevents
misunderstandings of our meaning. There each of our thoughts takes a
definite form and color perceptible to all, and this thought-symbol emits
a certain tone, which is not a word, but it conveys our meaning to the one
we address no matter what language he spoke on earth.
To arrive at an understanding of how such a universal language becomes
possible and is at once comprehended by all, without preparation, we may
take as an illustration the manner in which a musician reads music. A
German or a Polish composer may write an opera. Each has his own peculiar
terminology and expresses it in his own language. When that opera is to be
played by an Italian band master, or by a Spanish or American musician, it
need not be translated, the notes and symbols upon the page are a
universally understood language of symbols which is intelligible to
musicians of no matter what nationality. Similarly with figures, the
German counts: ein, zwei, drei; the Frenchman says: un, deux, trois, and
in English we use the words: one, two, three, but the figures: 1, 2, 3,
though differently spoken, are intelligible to all and mean the same.
There is no possibility of misunderstanding in the cases of either music
or figures. Thus it is also with the universal language peculiar to the
higher Regions of the Desire World and the still more subtile realms in
nature, it is intelligible to all, an exact mode of expression.
Returning to our description of the entities commonly met with in the
lower Desire World, we may note that other systems of religion than the
Egyptian, already mentioned, have spoken of various classes of beings
native to these realms. The Zoroastrian Religion, for instance, mentions
Seven Ameshaspends and the Izzards as having dominion over certain days
in the month and certain months in the year. The Christian religion speaks
of Seven Spirits before the Throne, which are the same beings the Persians
called Ameshaspends. Each of them rules over two months in the year while
the seventh: Michael, the highest, is their leader, for he is ambassador
from the sun to the earth, the others are ambassadors from the planets.
The Catholic religion with its abundant occult information takes most
notice of these "star-angels" and knows considerable about their
influence upon the affairs of the earth.
The Ameshaspends, however, do not inhabit the lower Regions of the Desire
World but influence the Izzards. According to the old Persian legend these
beings are divisible into one group of twenty-eight classes, and another
group of three classes. Each of these classes has dominion over, or takes
the lead of all the other classes on one certain day of the month. They
regulate the weather conditions on that day and work with animal and man
in particular. At least the twenty-eight classes do that, the other group
of three classes has nothing to do with animals, because they have only
twenty-eight pair of spinal nerves, while human beings have thirty-one.
Thus animals are attuned to the lunar month of twenty-eight days, while
man is correlated to the solar month of thirty or thirty-one days. The
ancient Persians were astronomers but not physiologists, they had no means
of knowing the different nervous constitution of animal and man, but they
saw clairvoyantly these superphysical beings, they noted and recorded
their work with animal and men and our own anatomical investigations may
show us the reason for these divisions of the classes of Izzards recorded
in that ancient system of philosophy.
Still another class of beings should be mentioned: those who have entered
the Desire World through the gate of death and are now hidden from our
physical vision. These so-called "dead" are in fact much more alive than
any of us, who are tied to a dense body and subject to all its
limitations, who are forced to slowly drag this clog along with us at the
rate of a few miles an hour, who must expend such an enormous amount of
energy upon propelling that vehicle that we are easily and quickly tired,
even when in the best of health and who are often confined to a bed,
sometimes for years, by the indisposition of this heavy mortal coil. But
when that is once shed and the freed spirit can again function in its
spiritual body, sickness is an unknown condition and distance is
annihilated, or at least practically so, for though it was necessary for
the Savior to liken the freed spirit to the wind which blows where it
listeth, that simile gives but a poor description of what actually takes
place in soul flights. Time is nonexistent there, as we shall presently
explain, so the writer has never been able to time himself, but has on
several occasions timed others when he was in the physical body and they
speeding through space upon a certain errand. Distances such as from the
Pacific Coast to Europe, the delivery of a short message there and the
return to the body has been accomplished in slightly less than one minute.
Therefore our assertion, that those whom we call dead are in reality much
more alive than we, is well founded in facts.
We spoke of the dense body in which we now live, as a "clog" and a
"fetter." It must not be inferred, however, that we sympathize with the
attitude of certain people who, when they have learned with what ease
soul-flights are accomplished, go about bemoaning the fact that they are
now imprisoned. They are constantly thinking of, and longing for, the day
when they shall be able to leave this mortal coil behind and fly away in
their spiritual body. Such an attitude of mind is decidedly mistaken, the
great and wise beings who are invisible leaders of our evolution have not
placed us here to no purpose. Valuable lessons are to be learned in this
visible world wherein we dwell, that cannot be learned in any other realm
of nature, and the very conditions of density and inertia whereof such
people complain, are factors which make it possible to acquire the
knowledge this world is designed to give. This fact was so amply
illustrated in a recent experience of the writer:--A friend had been
studying occultism for a number of years but had not studied astrology.
Last year she became aroused to the importance of this branch of study as
a key to self knowledge and a means of understanding the natures of
others, also of developing the compassion for their errors, so necessary
in the cultivation of love of one's neighbor. Love of our neighbor the
Savior enjoined upon us as the Supreme Commandment which is the
fulfillment of all laws, and as Astrology teaches us to bear and
forbear, it helps as nothing else can in the development of the supreme
virtue. She therefore joined one of the classes started in Los Angeles by
the writer, but a sudden illness quickly ended in death and thus
terminated her study of the subject in the physical body, ere it was well
Upon one of many occasions when she visited the writer subsequent to her
release from the body, she deplored the fact that it seemed so difficult
to make headway in her study of astrology. The writer advised continued
attendance at the classes, and suggested that she could surely get someone
"on the other side" to help her study.
At this she exclaimed impatiently: "Oh yes! of course I attend the
classes, I have done so right along; I have also found a friend who helps
me here. But you cannot imagine how difficult it is to concentrate here
upon mathematical calculations and the judgment of a horoscope or in fact
upon any subject here, where every little thought-current takes you miles
away from your study. I used to think it difficult to concentrate when I
had a physical body, but it is not a circumstance to the obstacles which
face the student here."
The physical body was an anchor to her, and it is that to all of us. Being
dense, it is also to a great extent impervious to disturbing influences
from which the more subtle spiritual bodies do not shield us. It enables
us to bring our ideas to a logical conclusion with far less effort at
concentration than is necessary in that realm where all is in such
incessant and turbulent motion. Thus we are gradually developing the
faculty of holding our thoughts to a center by existence in this world,
and we should value our opportunities here, rather than deplore the
limitations which help in one direction more than they fetter in another.
In fact, we should never deplore any condition, each has its lesson. If we
try to learn what that lesson is and to assimilate the experience which
may be extracted therefrom, we are wiser than those who waste time in vain
We said there is no time in the Desire World, and the reader will readily
understand that such must be the case from the fact, already mentioned,
that nothing there is opaque.
In this world the rotation of the opaque earth upon its axis is
responsible for the alternating conditions of day and night. We call it
Day--when the spot where we live is turned towards the sun and its rays
illumine our environment, but when our home is turned away from the sun
and its rays obstructed by the opaque earth we term the resulting
darkness: Night. The passage of the earth in its orbit around the sun
produces the seasons and the year, which are our divisions of time. But in
the Desire World where all is light there is but one long day. The spirit
is not there fettered by a heavy physical body, so it does not need sleep
and existence is unbroken. Spiritual substances are not subject to
contraction and expansion such as arise here from heat and cold, hence
summer and winter are also non-existent. Thus there is nothing to
differentiate one moment from another in respect of the conditions of
light and darkness, summer and winter, which mark time for us. Therefore,
while the so-called "dead" may have a very accurate memory of time as
regards the life they lived here in the body, they are usually unable to
tell anything about the chronological relation of events which have
happened to them in the Desire World, and it is a very common thing to
find that they do not even know how many years have elapsed since they
passed out from this plane of existence. Only students of the Stellar
Science are able to calculate the passage of time after their demise.
When the occult investigator wishes to study an event in the past history
of man, he may most readily call up the picture from the memory of
nature, but if he desires to fix the time of the incident, he will be
obliged to count backwards by the motion of the heavenly bodies. For that
purpose he generally uses the measure provided by the sun's precession:
Each year the sun crosses the earth's equator about the twenty-first of
March. Then day and night are of even length, therefore this is called the
Vernal equinox. But on account of a certain wabbling motion of the earth's
axis, the sun does not cross over at the same place in the Zodiac, it
reaches the equator a little too early, it precedes, year by year it
moves backwards a little. At the time of the birth of Christ, for
instance, the Vernal Equinox was in about seven degrees of the Zodiacal
sign Aries. During the two thousand years which intervene between that
event and the present time, the sun has moved backwards about
twenty-seven degrees, so that it is now in about ten degrees of the sign
Pisces. It moves around the whole circle of the Zodiac in about 25,868
years. The occult investigator may therefore count back the number of
signs, or whole circles, which the sun has preceded between the present
day and the time of the event he is investigating. Thus he has by the use
of the heavenly time keepers a very approximately correct measure of time
even though he is in the Desire World and that is another reason for
studying the Stellar Science.
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