ATLANTIS is the subject of a short but important article appearing in the Annual Report of the Board of Regents of The Smithsonian Institution for the year ending June 30th, 1915.
The description of the Atlantean civilization given by Plato in the Critias may be summarized as follows. The descendants of Atlas continued as rulers of Atlantis, and with wise government and industry elevated the country to a position of surpassing dignity. Plato then describes the white, black, and red stones which they quarried from beneath their continent and used in the construction of public buildings and docks. That part of Atlantis facing the sea was described as lofty and precipitous, but about the central city was a plain sheltered by mountains renowned for their size, number, and beauty. By ascending successively through the fiery sphere of Hades, the spheres of water, Earth, and air, and the heavens of the moon, the plane of Mercury is reached. Plato concludes his description by declaring that it was this great empire which attacked the Hellenic states. From a careful consideration of Plato's description of Atlantis it is evident that the story should not be regarded as wholly historical but rather as both allegorical and historical.
With the trident scepter of Poseidon these kings held sway over the inhabitants of the seven small and three great islands comprising Atlantis.
Either the initiated Plato used the Atlantis allegory to achieve two widely different ends or else the accounts preserved by the Egyptian priests were tampered with to perpetuate the secret doctrine. The same author sustains his views by noting that the deities of the Greek pantheon were nor looked upon as creators of the universe but rather as regents set over it by its more ancient original fabricators. Was the religious, philosophic, and scientific knowledge possessed by the priestcrafts of antiquity secured from Atlantis, whose submergence obliterated every vestige of its part in the drama of world progress? Popol Vuh.) The title of "winged" or "plumed" snake was applied to Quetzalcoatl, or Kukulcan, the Central American initiate. The mythologies of many nations contain accounts of gods who "came out of the sea." Certain shamans among the American Indians tell of holy men dressed in birds' feathers and wampum who rose out of the blue waters and instructed them in the arts and crafts. May it not have been that these demigods of a fabulous age who, Esdras-like, came out of the sea were Atlantean priests?
Popol Vuh, or the sacred book of the Guatemaleans, which also tells of his escaping in a large boat, like the Hindu Noah--Vaiswasvata.
From the Atlanteans the world has received not only the heritage of arts and crafts, philosophies and sciences, ethics and religions, but also the heritage of hate, strife, and perversion. The myth of Tammuz and Ishtar is one of the earliest examples of the dying-god allegory, probably antedating 4000 B. With outspread wings, Ishtar, the daughter of Sin (the Moon), sweeps downward to the gates of death. As Ishtar represents the spirit of fertility, her loss prevents the ripening of the crops and the maturing of all life upon the earth. The myth of Ishtar symbolizes the descent of the human spirit through the seven worlds, or spheres of the sacred planets, until finally, deprived of its spiritual adornments, it incarnates in the physical body--Hades--where the mistress of that body heaps every form of sorrow and misery upon the imprisoned consciousness. Another Mystery ritual among the Babylonians and Assyrians was that of Merodach and the Dragon. The Mysteries of Adonis, or Adoni, were celebrated annually in many parts of Egypt, Phœnicia, and Biblos. The effigy of a wild boar is said to have been set over one of the gates of Jerusalem in honor of Adonis, and his rites celebrated in the grotto of the Nativity at Bethlehem. Adonis was originally an androgynous deity who represented the solar power which in the winter was destroyed by the evil principle of cold--the boar. In the Mysteries of Adonis the neophyte passed through the symbolic death of the god and, "raised" by the priests, entered into the blessed state of redemption made possible by the sufferings of Adonis.
The great Pan was celebrated as the author and director of the sacred dances which he is supposed to have instituted to symbolize the circumambulations of the heavenly bodies. In Phrygia there existed a remarkable school of religious philosophy which centered around the life and untimely fate of another Savior-God known as Atys, or Attis, by many considered synonymous with Adonis. The Mysteries of Atys included a sacramental meal during which the neophyte ate out of a drum and drank from a cymbal. The rites of Sabazius were very similar to those of Bacchus and it is generally believed that the two deities are identical. The Cabiric Mysteries of Samothrace were renowned among the ancients, being next to the Eleusinian in public esteem. While a vast number of deities are associated with the Samothracian Mysteries, the ritualistic drama centers around four brothers. Herodotus relates that when Cambyses entered the temple of the Cabiri he was unable to restrain his mirth at seeing before him the figure of a man standing upright and, facing the man, the figure of a woman standing on her head. From a consideration of all these ancient and secret rituals it becomes evident that the mystery of the dying god was universal among the illumined and venerated colleges of the sacred teaching.
PHILIP, King of Macedon, ambitious to obtain the teacher who would be most capable of imparting the higher branches of learning to his fourteen-year-old son, Alexander, and wishing the prince to have for his mentor the most famous and learned of the great philosophers, decided to communicate with Aristotle.
The basic principles of the Ancient Wisdom were imparted to Alexander the Great by Aristotle, and at the philosopher's feet the Macedonian youth came to realize the transcendency of Greek learning as it was personified in Plato's immortal disciple. Aristotle in his leisure hours edited and annotated the Iliad of Horner and presented the finished volume to Alexander. While on his Asiatic campaign, Alexander learned that Aristotle had published one of his most prized discourses, an occurrence which deeply grieved the young king. A few short years and Alexander the Great went the way of all flesh, and with his body crumbled the structure of empire erected upon his personality.
Thus it is demonstrated that to capture a man it is not sufficient to enslave his body--it is necessary to enlist his reason; that to free a man it is not enough to strike the shackles from his limbs--his mind must be liberated from bondage to his own ignorance. That the philosophic culture of ancient Greece, Egypt, and India excelled that of the modern, world must be admitted by all, even by the most confirmed of modernists. Jean Duvet of Langres (who was born in 1485 and presumably died sometime after 1561, the year in which his illustrations to the Apocalypse were printed in book form) was the oldest and greatest of French Renaissance engravers.
Ignorant of the cause of life, ignorant of the purpose of life, ignorant of what lies beyond the mystery of death, yet possessing within himself the answer to it all, man is willing to sacrifice the beautiful, the true, and the good within and without upon the blood-stained altar of worldly ambition. In this commercial age science is concerned solely with the classification of physical knowledge and investigation of the temporal and illusionary parts of Nature.
In the ranks of the so-called learned there is rising up a new order of thinkers, which may best be termed the School of the Worldly Wise Men.
What do the lofty concepts of the world's illumined saviors and sages have in common with these stunted, distorted products of the "realism" of this century? The great philosophic institutions of the past must rise again, for these alone can tend the veil which divides the world of causes from that of effects. Briefly stated, the true purpose of ancient philosophy was to discover a method whereby development of the rational nature could be accelerated instead of awaiting the slower processes of Nature, This supreme source of power, this attainment of knowledge, this unfolding of the god within, is concealed under the epigrammatic statement of the philosophic life. Man's physical, emotional, and mental natures provide environments of reciprocal benefit or detriment to each other. In a civilization primarily concerned with the accomplishment of the extremes of temporal activity, the philosopher represents an equilibrating intellect capable of estimating and guiding the cultural growth.
The one hope of the world is philosophy, for all the sorrows of modern life result from the lack of a proper philosophic code.
War--the irrefutable evidence of irrationality--still smolders in the hearts of men; it cannot die until human selfishness is overcome. This symbolic figure, representing the way to everlasting life, is described by Khunrath in substance as follows: "This is the Portal of the amphitheatre of the only true and eternal Wisdom--a narrow one, indeed, but sufficiently august, and consecrated to Jehovah.
Two fundamental forms of ignorance were recognized by the Platonists: simple ignorance and complex ignorance. In the last analysis, the Ultimate Cause alone can be denominated wise; in simpler words, only God is good.
Thus all creatures are relatively ignorant yet relatively wise; comparatively nothing yet comparatively all. In addition to the simple ignorance which is the most potent factor in mental growth there exists another, which is of a far more dangerous and subtle type. The twentieth century makes a fetish of civilization and is overwhelmed by its own fabrications; its gods are of its own fashioning. From age to age men ceaselessly toil to build cities that they may rule over them with pomp and power--as though a fillet of gold or ten million vassals could elevate man above the dignity of his own thoughts and make the glitter of his scepter visible to the distant stars. If the Infinite had not desired man to become wise, He would not have bestowed upon him the faculty of knowing. Philosophy would lead all men into the broad, calm vistas of truth, for the world of philosophy is a land of peace where those finer qualities pent up within each human soul are given opportunity for expression.
Following the path pointed out by the wise, the seeker after truth ultimately attains to the summit of wisdom's mount, and gazing down, beholds the panorama of life spread out before him.
While man's physical body resides with him and mingles with the heedless throng, it is difficult to conceive of man as actually inhabiting a world of his own-a world which he has discovered by lifting himself into communion with the profundities of his own internal nature. When once the rational consciousness of man rolls away the stone and comes forth from its sepulcher, it dies no more; for to this second or philosophic birth there is no dissolution. Man is not the insignificant creature that he appears to be; his physical body is not the true measure of his real self. From the world of physical pursuits the initiates of old called their disciples into the life of the mind and the spirit. NO treatise which deals with symbolism would be complete without a section devoted to the consideration of cryptograms. The arcana of the ancient Mysteries were never revealed to the profane except through the media of symbols. The temples of the ancient Mysteries evolved their own sacred languages, known only to their initiates and never spoken save in the sanctuary. Secret alphabets were not entirely satisfactory, however, for although they rendered unintelligible the true nature of the writings, their very presence disclosed the fact of concealed information--which the priests also sought to conceal.
During the Middle Ages scores of writers--members of secret political or religious organizations--published books containing ciphers. Many churchmen, it is interesting to note, used cryptograms, fearing excommunication or a worse fate should their scientific researches be suspected. One year after the publication of the first Great "Shakespearian" Folio, a remarkable volume on cryptogram, and ciphers was published. Had Roger Bacon failed to conceal this discovery under a complicated cipher, he would have been persecuted as a heretic and would probably have met the fate of other early liberal thinkers. A careful inspection of the first four "Shakespeare" folios discloses the use throughout the volumes of several styles of type differing in minute but distinguishable details. The biliteral cipher was not confined to the writings of Bacon and "Shakespeare," however, but appears in many books published during Lord Bacon's lifetime and for nearly a century after his b death. The Baconian biliteral cipher is difficult to use today, owing to the present exact standardization of type and the fact that so few books are now hand set. At this point the inquirer might reasonably expect the letters to make intelligible words; but he will very likely be disappointed, for, as in the case above, the letters thus extracted are themselves a cryptogram, doubly involved to discourage those who might have a casual acquaintance with the biliteral system. After the document to be deciphered has been reduced to its "a" and "b" equivalents, it is then broken up into five-letter groups and the message read with the aid of the above table. This Plate is reproduced from Bacon's De Augmentis Scientiarum, and shows the two alphabets as designed by him for the purpose of his cipher. Of course, by moving the inner disc of the wheel cipher, many different combinations in addition to the one given above can be made of the letters, but this is the only one which will produce sense, and the cryptogrammatist must keep on experimenting until he discovers a logical and intelligible message. There are several other forms of the literal cipher in which letters are substituted for each other by a prearranged sequence. By substituting the letters of the lower alphabet for their equivalents in the upper one, a meaningless conglomeration results, the hidden message being decoded by reversing the process. Essays, third edition, where an initial B is formed by two arches and an F by a broken arch.
Fables are outstanding examples of acroamatic cryptography in which are concealed the deepest and most sublime truths of ancient mystical philosophy. The acroamatic cipher is the most subtle of all, for the parable or allegory is susceptible of several interpretations. Beginning with the word VISITA and reading clockwise, the seven initial letters of the seven words inscribed in the outer circle read: VITRIOL. The first circle portrays the divine antecedents of justice, the second the universal scope of justice, and the third the results of human application of justice.
In the third or inner circle is man, a tenfold creature, consisting of nine parts--three of spirit, three of intellect, and three of soul--enclosed within one constitution. The most simple numerical cipher is that in which the letters of the alphabet are exchanged for numbers in ordinary sequence. Authors sometimes based their cryptograms upon the numerical value of their own names; for example, Sir Francis Bacon repeatedly used the cryptic number 33--the numerical equivalent of his name. There are also numerical ciphers from which the cryptic message may be extracted by counting every tenth word, every twentieth word, or every fiftieth word. To render more difficult the decoding of arbitrary ciphers, however, the characters are seldom broken up into words, and, further, the table of recurrence is partly nullified by assigning two or more different characters to each letter, thereby making it impossible to estimate accurately the frequency of recurrence.
In addition to the foregoing classifications there are a number of miscellaneous systems of secret writing, some employing mechanical devices, others colors. Curious alphabets were invented by the early and mediæval philosophers to conceal their doctrines and tenets from the profane. IN his well-known work, The Rosicrucians, Their Rites and Mysteries, Hargrave Jennings reproduces five Qabbalistic charts which he declares to be genuine Rosicrucian drawings. The five plates reproduced in Hargrave Jennings' book are part of a series of fifteen diagrams which appear in The Magical, Qabbalistical, and Theosophical Writings of Georgius von Welling, on the Subject of Salt, Sulphur, and Mercury. Von Welling does not give a complete exposition of the fifteen charts; to have done so would have been contrary to the principles of Qabbalistic philosophy.
Figure 1 is a Ptolemaic chart showing the true relationship existing between the primordial elements. The space between B and C marks the orbits or planes of the seven Spiritual Intelligences called the Divine Planets (not the visible planets).
Figure 2 is the Qabbalistic symbol of elemental water; Figure 9 represents the spiritual invisible water. Figures 12, 13, 14 demonstrate the sphere as a symbol of motion to be emblematic of fire, water, and air; and the cube as a symbol of weight to be emblematic of earth. Of Figure 15, the symbol of salt, von Welling writes, in substance: The cube has six sides, corresponding to the six days of creation, with the point of rest (the seventh day) in the center of the cube. Figure 16 is another symbol of salt, while Figure 17 (the dot) is the sign of spirit, gold, the sun, or the germ of life.
Figure 22 is a symbol of water; Figure 23 is the complete universal character of light and darkness.
Figure 26 is the character of the air, showing that air is born out of the Eternal Light and the ethereal water. Figure 34 is the character of the greater and lesser worlds; as the dot is surrounded by its circumference, this world is surrounded by Schamayim. The four globes within the second ring depict the second, third, fourth, and fifth days of creation.
Figure 54 is similar to Figure 53, but represents the universe at the time God manifested Himself through the character of Jupiter, the Spirit Sachasiel.
A represents the Father Principle, F the divine outflow, G the point of influx into the twelve orders of spirits (probably Sagittarius). Figure 1 is the triune divine sulphur, the All-Perfect out of the All-Perfect, the Soul of creatures.
Figure 9 is a synthesis of the Old and New Testaments and represents the interblending planes of being. Figure 10 shows the New Jerusalem in form of a cube, with the names of the twelve tribes of Israel written on the twelve lines of the cube. Figure 18 describes the division according to Genesis of the waters above the heavens (D) from the waters below (A, B, and C).
Figure 1 is Ain Soph, the Incomprehensible Abyss of Divine Majesty, an endless welling up, limitless in time and space. REPRESENTATIVE of the attitude of Christendom toward Islam, till recent years at least, is Alexander Ross's postscript to the Anglicized version, published in 1649, of Sieur Du Ryer's French translation of the Koran. The accusation of blasphemy is emphasized against Mohammed because he affirmed that God, being unmarried, was incapable of having a Son!
In other words, the God of Islam has but to desire and the object of that desire at once comes into being, whereas the God of Alexander Ross must proceed in accord with the laws of human generation!
While the Prophet was still but a toddling babe, the Angel Gabriel with seventy wings came to him, and cutting open the child, withdrew the heart.
In his youth Mohammed traveled with the Meccan caravans, on one occasion acted as armor-bearer for his uncle, and spent a considerable time among the Bedouins, from whom he learned many of the religious and philosophic traditions of ancient Arabia. With the passing years Mohammed attained marked success in business and when about twenty-six years old married one of his employers, a wealthy widow nearly fifteen years his senior. Mohammed would have lived and died an honored and respected Meccan had he not unhesitatingly sacrificed both his wealth and social position in the service of the God whose voice he heard while meditating in the cavern on Mount Hira in the month of Ramadan. In the seventeenth sura of the Koran it is written that upon a certain night Mohammed was transported from the temple at Mecca to that of Jerusalem, but no details are given of the strange journey. Possibly as a result of his lonely periods of meditation, Mohammed seemingly was subject to ecstatic swoons.
If the writings attributed to Mohammed be considered as merely the hallucinations of an epileptic--and for that reason discounted--his Christian detractors should beware lest with the doctrines of the Prophet they also undermine the very teachings which they themselves affirm, for many of the disciples, apostles, and saints of the early church are known to have been subject to nervous disorders.
Among the first to accept the faith of Islam was Abu Bekr, who became Mohammed's closest and most faithful friend, in fact his alter ego.
Dating from the Hegira the power of the Prophet steadily grew until in the eighth year Mohammed entered Mecca after practically a bloodless victory and established it as the spiritual center of his faith. In the tenth year after the Hegira, Mohammed led the valedictory pilgrimage and for the last time rode at the head of the faithful along the sacred way leading to Mecca and the Black Stone. When these words were uttered the multitude fell down in adoration and even Mohammed's camel knelt.
Mohammed suffered greatly with his head and side and also from fever, but on June 8th seemed convalescent. Confused by the apparently hopeless task of reconciling the life of the Prophet with the absurd statements long accepted as authentic, Washington Irving weighs him in the scales of fairness. A'isha, questioned after the death of the Prophet concerning his habits, replied that he mended his own clothes, cobbled his own shoes, and helped her in the household duties. The most frequent, and apparently the most damaging, accusation brought against Mohammed is that of polygamy.
The Caaba, or cube-shaped building in the midst of the great court of the mosque at Mecca, is the most holy spot in the Islamic world. Little is known of the history of the Caaba prior to its rededication as a Mohammedan mosque, other than that the building was a pagan temple. According to tradition, 2,000 years before the creation of the world the Caaba was first constructed in heaven, where a model of it still remains. The side of the Caaba are the supposed graves of Hagar and Ishmael, and near the door (which is about seven feet above the ground) is the stone upon which Abraham stood while rebuilding the Caaba.
Here the attainment of heaven is clearly set forth as a problem whose only solution is that of individual merit.
The Prophet did not advise either woman to rely upon the virtues of her husband nor in any manner did he indicate woman's salvation to be dependent upon the human frailty of her spouse.
Everything to the contrary notwithstanding, Mohammed is not responsible for the contradictions and inconsistencies in the Koran, for the volume was not compiled and did not assume its present form until over twenty years after his death. To the discerning few it is evident that Mohammed had a knowledge of that secret doctrine which must needs constitute the core of every great philosophical, religious, or ethical institution. The arcana of Islam may yet be demonstrated to have been directly founded upon the ancient pagan Mysteries performed at the Caaba centuries before the birth of the Prophet; in fact it is generally admitted that many of the ceremonials now embodied in the Islamic Mysteries are survivals of pagan Arabia.
In the present text containing the prophecy of Jesus concerning a comforter to come after Him, it is further claimed that the word comforter should be translated illustrious and that it had a direct reference to Mohammed; also that the tongues of flame that descended upon the apostles on the day of Pentecost in no way could be interpreted as signifying the promised comforter.
To ignore the heritage of culture received from Islam would be an unpardonable oversight, for when the crescent triumphed over the cross in Southern Europe it was the harbinger of a civilization which had no equal in its day. Termier presents geologic, geographic, and zoologic data in substantiation of the Atlantis theory. In the first ages the gods divided the earth among themselves, proportioning it according to their respective dignities. They circumscribed each of the land zones with a wall, the outer wall being covered with brass, the middle with tin, and the inner, which encompassed the citadel, with orichalch. There were numerous temples to various deities, places of exercise for men and for beasts, public baths, and a great race course for horses. The plain yielded two crops each year,, in the winter being watered by rains and in the summer by immense irrigation canals, which were also used for transportation. Each of the kings of Atlantis had complete control over his own kingdom, but their mutual relationships were governed by a code engraved by the first ten kings on a column' of orichalch standing in the temple of Poseidon. Above Mercury are the planes of Venus, the sun, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, the latter containing the symbols of the Zodiacal constellations.
This did not occur, however, until their power and glory had lured the Atlantean kings from the pathway of wisdom and virtue. Origen, Porphyry, Proclus, Iamblichus, and Syrianus realized that the story concealed a profound philosophical mystery, but they disagreed as to the actual interpretation.
Philosophically, the ten islands symbolize the triune powers of the Superior Deity and the seven regents who bow before His eternal throne. This does not mean to imply that Atlantis is purely mythological, but it overcomes the most serious obstacle to acceptance of the Atlantis theory, namely, the fantastic accounts of its origin, size, appearance, and date of destruction--9600 B.C.
The Garden of Eden from which humanity was driven by a flaming sword is perhaps an allusion to the earthly paradise supposedly located west of the Pillars of Hercules and destroyed by volcanic cataclysms. Atlantean sun worship has been perpetuated in the ritualism and ceremonialism of both Christianity and pagandom. The center of the Atlantean Wisdom-Religion was presumably a great pyramidal temple standing on the brow of a plateau rising in the midst of the City of the Golden Gates. Among the legends of the Chaldeans is that of Oannes, a partly amphibious creature who came out of the sea and taught the savage peoples along the shore to read and write, till the soil, cultivate herbs for healing, study the stars, establish rational forms of government, and become conversant with the sacred Mysteries.
All that primitive man remembered of the Atlanteans was the glory of their golden ornaments, the transcendency of their wisdom, and the sanctity of their symbols--the cross and the serpent. The Atlanteans instigated the first war; and it has been said that all subsequent wars were fought in a fruitless effort to justify the first one and right the wrong which it caused. The gods, realizing that the loss of Ishtar is disorganizing all Nature, send a messenger to the underworld and demand her release. The waters of life--the secret doctrine--cure the diseases of ignorance; and the spirit, ascending again to its divine source, regains its God-given adornments as it passes upward through the rings of the planets. Merodach, the creator of the inferior universe, slays a horrible monster and out of her body forms the universe.
The name Adonis, or Adoni, means "Lord" and was a designation applied to the sun and later borrowed by the Jews as the exoteric name of their God.
14, it is written that women were weeping for Tammuz (Adonis) at the north gate of the Lord's House in Jerusalem. Adonis as the "gored" (or "god") man is one of the keys to Sir Francis Bacon's use of the "wild boar" in his cryptic symbolism.
After three days (months) in the tomb, Adonis rose triumphant on the 25th day of March, amidst the acclamation of his priests and followers, "He is risen!" Adonis was born out of a myrrh tree.
Pan was a composite creature, the upper part--with the exception of his horns--being human, and the lower part in the form of a goat. In support of this viewpoint they describe the "gardens of Adonis, " which were small baskets of earth in which seeds were planted and nurtured for a period of eight days. After being baptized by the blood of a bull, the new initiate was fed entirely on milk to symbolize that he was still a philosophical infant, having but recently been born out of the sphere of materiality. Herodotus declares that the Samothracians received their doctrines, especially those concerning Mercury, from the Pelasgians.
The first three--Aschieros, Achiochersus, and Achiochersa--attack and murder the fourth--Cashmala (or Cadmillus). The temple of the Cabiri at Samothrace contained a number of curious divinities, many of them misshapen creatures representing the elemental powers of Nature, possibly the Bacchic Titans. Had Cambyses been acquainted with the principles of divine astronomy, he would have realized that he was then in the presence of the key to universal equilibrium. The most important example of this peculiar conception is found in the Odinic rituals where Odin hangs himself for nine nights from the branches of the World Tree and upon the same occasion also pierces his own side with the sacred spear.
This mystery has been perpetuated in Christianity in the crucifixion and death of the God-man-Jesus the Christ. Elevated by his illumined teacher to the threshold of the philosophic sphere, he beheld the world of the sages--the world that fate and the limitations of his own soul decreed he should not conquer. This book the young conqueror so highly prized that he carried it with him on all his campaigns.
One year later Aristotle also passed into that greater world concerning whose mysteries he had so often discoursed with his disciples in the Lyceum. Physical conquest must ever fail, for, generating hatred and dissension, it spurs the mind to the avenging of an outraged body; but all men are bound whether willingly or unwillingly to obey that intellect in which they recognize qualities and virtues superior to their own. The golden era of Greek æsthetics, intellectualism, and ethics has never since been equaled. Materiality bestows death in that it benumbs or clouds those faculties of the human soul which should be responsive to the enlivening impulses of creative thought and ennobling virtue.
Little is known concerning Duvet beyond the fact that he was the goldsmith to the King of France. From the lofty heights of his Selfhood he slowly sinks into the gloomy depths of ephemerality.
The world of philosophy--that beautiful garden of thought wherein the sages dwell in the bond of fraternity--fades from view. Its so-called practical discoveries bind man but more tightly with the bonds of physical limitation, Religion, too, has become materialistic: the beauty and dignity of faith is measured by huge piles of masonry, by tracts of real estate, or by the balance sheet. After arriving at the astounding conclusion that they are the intellectual salt of the earth, these gentlemen of letters have appointed themselves the final judges of all knowledge, both human and divine.
All over the world men and women ground down by the soulless cultural systems of today are crying out for the return of the banished age of beauty and enlightenment--for something practical in the highest sense of the word.
Only the Mysteries--those sacred Colleges of Wisdom--can reveal to struggling humanity that greater and more glorious universe which is the true home of the spiritual being called man. This was the key to the Great Work, the mystery of the Philosopher's Stone, for it meant that alchemical transmutation had been accomplished. Since the physical nature is the immediate environment of the mental, only that mind is capable of rational thinking which is enthroned in a harmonious and highly refined material constitution.
The establishment of the philosophic rhythm in the nature of an individual ordinarily requires from fifteen to twenty years. Those who sense even in part the dignity of life cannot but realize the shallowness apparent in the activities of this age. To this portal ascent is made by a mystic, indisputably prologetic, flight of steps, set before it as shown in the picture. Simple ignorance is merely lack of knowledge and is common to all creatures existing posterior to the First Cause, which alone has perfection of knowledge.
This second form, called twofold or complex ignorance, may be briefly defined as ignorance of ignorance. As this tiny planet rolls along its orbit in space, it carries with it some two billion human beings who live and die oblivious to that immeasurable existence lying beyond the lump on which they dwell. It shows him that he is a brother to the suns which dot the firmament; it lifts him from a taxpayer on a whirling atom to a citizen of Cosmos. If He had not intended man to become virtuous, He would not have sown within the human heart the seeds of virtue.
Here men are taught the wonders of the blades of grass; each stick and stone is endowed with speech and tells the secret of its being.
The cities of the plains are but tiny specks and the horizon on every hand is obscured by the gray haze of the Unknown.
By this should not be inferred physical immortality, but rather that the philosopher has learned that his physical body is no more his true Self than the physical earth is his true world. The invisible nature of man is as vast as his comprehension and as measureless as his thoughts.
Throughout the ages, the Mysteries have stood at the threshold of Reality--that hypothetical spot between noumenon and phenomenon, the Substance and the shadow. They scoff at goodness while they ponder with befuddled minds the phantasmagoria of materiality. The use of ciphers has long been recognized as indispensable in military and diplomatic circles, but the modern world has overlooked the important rôle played by cryptography in literature and philosophy. Symbolism fulfilled the dual office of concealing the sacred truths from the uninitiated and revealing them to those qualified to understand the symbols.
The illumined priests considered it sacrilege to discuss the sacred truths of the higher worlds or the divine verities of eternal Nature in the same tongue as that used by the vulgar for wrangling and dissension.
Through patience or persecution, the keys to these alphabets were eventually acquired and the contents of the documents revealed to the unworthy. The result was the appearance of cryptic systems of writing designed to conceal the presence of both the message and the cryptogram. Secret writing became a fad; every European court had its own diplomatic cipher, and the intelligentsia vied with one another in devising curious and complicated cryptograms.
Only recently an intricate cipher of Roger Bacon's has been unraveled, revealing the fact that this early scientist was well versed in the cellular theory.
In spite of the rapid progress made by science in the last two hundred and fifty years, it still remains ignorant concerning many of the original discoveries made by mediæval investigators. The cipher may run through an entire book and be placed therein at the time of printing without the knowledge of the original author, for it does not necessitate the changing of either words or punctuation. Compare each letter with the two types of letters in the biliteral alphabet table reproduced from Lord Bacon's De Augmentis Scientiarum.
The smaller, or inner, alphabet moves around so that any one of its letters may be brought opposite any me of he letters on the larger, or outer, alphabet.
There is also a form of the literal cipher in which the actual cryptogram is written in the body of the document, but unimportant words are inserted between important ones according to a prearranged order. Pictorial cryptograms are sometimes accompanied by the key necessary for their decipherment. The capital letters of the seven words in the outer circle read clockwise, form the word SVLPHVR.
This is a very simple alchemical enigma, but is a reminder that those studying works on Hermeticism, Rosicrucianism, alchemy, and Freemasonry should always be on the lookout for concealed meanings hidden either in Parables and allegories or in cryptic arrangements of numbers, letters, and words.
Hence, the first circle deals with divine principles, the second circle with mundane affairs, and the third circle with man.
The upper and light section is called the Supreme Region and is the abode of the gods, the good spirits, and the heroes. By inserting a non-significant, or uncounted, number after each of the significant numbers the cipher is still more effectively concealed, thus: 23-16-5-9-18. Therefore in a book using this method, line 138, page 138, or paragraph 138 may contain the concealed message. In this little volume, which was largely derived from the more voluminous treatises of Trithemius and Selenus, the author sets forth a method whereby musicians can converse with each other by substituting musical notes for the letters of the alphabet.
By merely counting the number of times each character appears in the message, the law of recurrence discloses the English letter for which the arbitrary character stands. Therefore, the greater the number of arbitrary characters used to represent any single letter of the alphabet, the more difficult it is to decipher an arbitrary cryptogram. A few make use of sundry miscellaneous objects to represent words and even complete thoughts. Some of these alphabets are still used to a limited extent in the higher degrees of Freemasonry. He gives no information concerning their origin nor does he attempt an elucidation of their symbolism.


The secret knowledge of the Rosicrucians concerning Lucifer is nowhere so plainly set forth as in these plates, which virtually reveal his true identity, a carefully guarded secret about which little has been written. The deeper significance of the symbols is revealed only by profound study and contemplation. Its secret significance is as follows: The outer ring enclosed by the lines A and B is the region of Schamayim, a Qabbalistic name for the Supreme Deity, signifying the expanse of the heavens, or a spiritual fiery water.
According to the Mysteries, the souls of men enter the lower worlds through ring B, the fixed stars. Figure 3 is the Qabbalistic symbol of elemental air; Figure 7 represents the spiritual and invisible air. The sphere rests upon a point, the cube upon a surface; the sphere is therefore used to symbolize spirit, and the cube, matter. The upright triangle represents Schamayim; the inverted triangle the dark earth which imprisons the infernal subterranean fire.
Man (the Little World) is included in this symbol because his inner nature is potential gold (Aphar Min Haadamah), which gold is his eternal indestructible spiritual body. It signifies that silver (like gold) is a perfect metal, except that the red part of its nature is turned inward. Figure 48 is the character of sal ammoniac, which element derives its name from the Temple of Jupiter Ammon in an Egyptian desert, where it was found. Von Welling gives no reason for the change in the order of influx into the twelve orders of spirits, for the third world, for the adding of another circle and the interlaced triangles in the upper world, or for the letters Y and Z. While air is close to the light and filled with beautiful spirits, it is also the habitation of Beelzebub, the Evil Spirit of the air, with his legion of elemental demons.
The threefold Divine One is symbolized by three interlaced circles designated alchemically salt, sulphur, and mercury. The motion of the rays toward b, d, and c was the first divine manifestation and is symbolized by the equilateral triangle, b, d, c.
The o on top of the radius of the circle is the dot of Eternity--the Beginning of Beginnings. Figure 3 is the character of the Universal Mercury (Divine Life) in its triune aspect of mercury, sulphur, and salt. The four A's are the Abyss, B is the first revelation of God out of the Abyss, and from this revelation C, D, E, F, and G were created.
At the left is a small triangle containing the words The Secrets of Elohim, and at the right is another inscribed The Secrets of Nature. An interesting diagram is shown on either side of the central figure, each consisting of a triangle with circles radiating from its points. This Gabriel cleansed of the black drop of original sin which is in every human heart because of the perfidy of Adam and then returned the organ to its proper place in the Prophet's body.
While traveling with his uncle, Abu Taleb, Mohammed contacted the Nestorian Christians, having encamped on a certain night near one of their monasteries. The widow, Khadijah by name, was apparently somewhat mercenary, for, finding her young business manager most efficient, she resolved to retain him in that capacity for life!
Year after year Mohammed climbed the rocky and desolate slopes of Mount Hira (since called Jebel Nur, "the Mountain of light") and here in his loneliness cried out to God to reveal anew the pure religion of Adam, that spiritual doctrine lost to mankind through the dissensions of religious factions.
On the occasions when the various suras of the Koran were dictated he is said to have fallen unconscious, and, regardless of the chill of the surrounding air, to have been covered with beads of perspiration. Abu Bekr, a man of brilliant attainments, contributed materially to the success of the Prophet's enterprise, and in accord with the express wish of the Prophet became the leader of the faithful after Mohammed's death. Planting his standard to the north of Mecca, he rode into the city, and after circling seven times the sacred Caaba, ordered the 360 images within its precincts to be hewn down. As the premonition of death was strong upon him, he desired this pilgrimage to be the perfect model for all the thousands that would follow. He joined his followers in prayer and, seating himself in the courtyard, delivered a lecture to the faithful in a clear and powerful voice. No evidence exists to support the charges of extreme cruelty and licentiousness laid at his door. How far removed from Western concepts of Mohammed's sanguinary character is A’isha's simple admission that he loved most of all to sew! Those who sincerely believe the harem to be irreconcilable with spirituality should with consistency move for the expurgation of the Psalms of David and the Proverbs of Solomon from the list of inspired writings, for the harem of Islam's Prophet was insignificant compared with that maintained by Israel's wisest king and the reputed favorite of the Most High! Toward it the followers of the Prophet must face five times a day at the appointed hours of prayer. At the time the Prophet captured Mecca, the Caaba and surrounding court contained 360 idols, which were destroyed by Mohammed before he actually gained access to the shrine itself.
Various coverings have always been thrown over the cube-shaped structure; the present drape, which is replaced annually, is a black brocade embroidered in a gold. In its present state the Koran is, for the major part, a jumble of hearsay through which occasionally shines forth an example of true inspiration. When asked, however, for definite proof that the original Gospels contained these so-called expurgated references to Mohammed, the Moslems make a counter-demand for production of the original documents upon which Christianity is founded.
Figuratively draining the entire bed of the Atlantic Ocean, he considers the inequalities of its basin and cites locations on a line from the Azores to Iceland where dredging has brought lava to the surface from a depth of 3,000 meters. Each became the peculiar deity of his own allotment and established therein temples to himself, ordained a priestcraft, and instituted a system of sacrifice. Precious metals were mined, wild animals domesticated, and perfumes distilled from its fragrant flowers.
The citadel, on the central island, contained the pal aces, temples, and other public buildings. At various vantage points on the zones were fortifications, and to the great harbor came vessels from every maritime nation. The plain was divided into sections, and in time of war each section supplied its quota of fighting men and chariots. At alternate intervals of five and six years a pilgrimage was made to this temple that equal honor might be conferred upon both the odd and the even numbers. Above the arch of the heavens (Saturn) is the dwelling Place of the different powers controlling the universe. At daybreak they wrote their sentences upon a golden tablet: and deposited them with their robes as memorials.
If Atlantis be considered as the archetypal sphere, then its immersion signifies the descent of rational, organized consciousness into the illusionary, impermanent realm of irrational, mortal ignorance. In the midst of the central island of Atlantis was a lofty mountain which cast a shadow five thousand stadia in extent and whose summit touched the sphere of æther. From here the Initiate-Priests of the Sacred Feather went forth, carrying the keys of Universal Wisdom to the uttermost parts of the earth. Among the Mayas, Quetzalcoatl, the Savior-God (whom some Christian scholars believe to have been St. That they came in ships was soon forgotten, for untutored minds considered even boats as supernatural.
Before Atlantis sank, its spiritually illumined Initiates, who realized that their land was doomed because it had departed from the Path of Light, withdrew from the ill-fated continent.
Over the bolts on the door of the house of Irkalla is scattered dust, and the keepers of the house are covered with feathers like birds.
Smyrna, mother of Adonis, was turned into a tree by the gods and after a time the bark burst open and the infant Savior issued forth.
Myrrh, the symbol of death because of its connection with the process of embalming, was one of the gifts brought by the three Magi to the manger of Jesus. Pan is the prototype of natural energy and, while undoubtedly a phallic deity, should nor be confused with Priapus. When those plants prematurely died for lack of sufficient earth, they were considered emblematic of the murdered Adonis and were usually cast into the sea with images of the god. The Sabazian Mysteries were performed at night, and the ritual included the drawing of a live snake across the breast of the candidate. Little is known concerning the Cabiric rituals, for they were enshrouded in the profoundest secrecy.
Dionysidorus, however, identifies Aschieros with Demeter, Achiochersus with Pluto, Achiochersa with Persephone, and Cashmala with Hermes. Children were initiated into the Cabirian cult with the same dignity as adults, and criminals who reached the sanctuary were safe from pursuit. As the result of this great sacrifice, Odin, while suspended over the depths of Nifl-heim, discovered by meditation the runes or alphabets by which later the records of his people were preserved.
The secret import of this world tragedy and the Universal Martyr must be rediscovered if Christianity is to reach the heights attained by the pagans in the days of their philosophic supremacy.
At the time of his triumph over Darius, discovering among the spoils a magnificent, gem-studded casket of unguents, he dumped its contents upon the ground, declaring that at last he had found a case worthy of Aristotle's edition of the Iliad! In what shall I excel others if the more profound knowledge I gained from you be communicated to all? But, as Aristotle excelled Alexander in life, so he excelled him in death; for though his body moldered in an obscure tomb, the great philosopher continued to live in his intellectual achievements.
The true philosopher belongs to the most noble order of men: the nation or race which is blessed by possession of illumined thinkers is fortunate indeed, and its name shall be remembered for their sake. How inferior to these standards of remote days are the laws by which men live in the twentieth century!
His engravings for the Book of Revelation, executed after he had passed his seventieth year, were his masterpiece. He falls to the level of the beast, and in brutish fashion mumbles the problems arising from his all too insufficient knowledge of the Divine Plan. In its place rises an empire of stone, steel, smoke, and hate-a world in which millions of creatures potentially human scurry to and fro in the desperate effort to exist and at the same time maintain the vast institution which they have erected and which, like some mighty, juggernaut, is rumbling inevitably towards an unknown end.
Philosophy which connects heaven and earth like a mighty ladder, up the rungs of which the illumined of all ages have climbed into the living presence of Reality--even philosophy has become a prosaic and heterogeneous mass of conflicting notions. This group affirms that all mystics must have been epileptic and most of the saints neurotic!
A few are beginning to realize that so-called civilization in its present form is at the vanishing point; that coldness, heartlessness, commercialism, and material efficiency are impractical, and only that which offers opportunity for the expression of love and ideality is truly worth while. Modern philosophy has failed in that it has come to regard thinking as simply an intellectual process. Thus ancient philosophy was primarily the living of a life; secondarily, an intellectual method. Hence right action, right feeling, and right thinking are prerequisites of right knowing, and the attainment of philosophic power is possible only to such as have harmonized their thinking with their living. During that entire period the disciples of old were constantly subjected to the most severe discipline.
Well has it been said that no individual can succeed until he has developed his philosophy of life. It consists of seven theosophic, or, rather, philosophic steps of the Doctrine of the Faithful Sons. Out of the ruins of the civilization which died when its idealism died, some primitive people yet in the womb of destiny must build a new world.
Simple ignorance is an ever-active agent, urging the soul onward to the acquisition of knowledge. Through the eternities of existence man is gradually increasing in both wisdom and understanding; his ever-expanding consciousness is including more of the external within the area of itself.
Worshiping the sun, moon, and stars, and offering sacrifices to the winds, the primitive savage sought with crude fetishes to propitiate his unknown gods. Ptolemy has been ridiculed for conceiving the earth to be the center of the universe, yet modern civilization is seemingly founded upon the hypothesis that the planet earth is the most permanent and important of all the heavenly spheres, and that the gods from their starry thrones are fascinated by the monumental and epochal events taking place upon this spherical ant-hill in Chaos.
Measured by the infinities of time and space, what are the captains of industry or the lords of finance? It teaches him that while physically bound to earth (of which his blood and bones are part), there is nevertheless within him a spiritual power, a diviner Self, through which he is one with the symphony of the Whole. If He had predestined man to be limited to his narrow physical life, He would not have equipped him with perceptions and sensibilities capable of grasping, in part at least, the immensity of the outer universe. All life, bathed in the radiance of understanding, becomes a wonderful and beautiful reality. Then the soul realizes that wisdom lies in breadth of vision; that it increases in comparison to the vista. In the realization that he and his body are dissimilar--that though the form must perish the life will not fail--he achieves conscious immortality. The fingers of his mind reach out and grasp the stars; his spirit mingles with the throbbing life of Cosmos itself.
The gates of the Mysteries stand ever ajar and those who will may pass through into the spacious domicile of spirit. The false civilization built by man has turned, and like the monster of Frankenstein, is destroying its creator. If the art of deciphering cryptograms could be made popular, it would result in the discovery of much hitherto unsuspected wisdom possessed by both ancient and mediæval philosophers. Having thus devised a method of transmitting their secrets to posterity, the illuminati encouraged the circulation of certain documents specially prepared through incorporating into them ciphers containing the deepest secrets of mysticism and philosophy. The literature of the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth centuries is permeated with ciphers, few of which have ever been decoded. The only record of these important findings is that contained in the cryptograms of the volumes which they published. The biliteral cipher requires the use of two styles of type, one an ordinary face and the other specially cut.
These ciphers may have been added to the original plays, which are much longer in the folios than in the original quartos, full scenes having been added in some instances. It is possible that this cipher was inserted for political purposes into many documents and volumes published during the seventeenth century. In order to demonstrate the working of this cipher, the message concealed within the words "Wisdom and understanding are more to be desired than riches" will now be deciphered. A comparison of the "d" in "wisdom" with the "d" in "and" discloses a large loop at the top of the first, while the second shows practically no loop at all. In some, cases the inner alphabet is written backwards, but in the present example, both alphabets read the same way. The biliteral system did not in every instance make use of two alphabets in which the differences were as perceptible as in the example here given, but the two alphabets were always used; sometimes variations are so minute that it requires a powerful magnifying glass to distinguish the difference between the "a" and "b" types of letters.
The literal cipher also includes what are called acrostic signatures--that is, words written down the column by the use of the first letter of each line and also more complicated acrostics in which the important letters are scattered through entire paragraphs or chapters. Any picture or drawing with other than its obvious meaning may be considered a pictorial cryptogram. A figure may point toward the starting point of the cipher or carry in its hand some implement disclosing the system of measurement used. The religious and philosophical writings of all nations abound with acroamatic cryptograms, that is, parables and allegories. They are satisfied with the moral interpretation of the parable and forget that each parable and allegory is capable of seven interpretations, of which the seventh--the highest--is complete and all-inclusive, whereas the other six (and lesser) interpretations are fragmentary, revealing but part of the mystery. On the at the top of the picture sits Themis, the presiding spirit of law, and at her feet three other queens--Juno, Minerva, and Venus--their robes ornamented with geometric figures. The third circle is further divided into three parts called ages: the Golden Age of spiritual truth in the upper right section, the Iron Age of spiritual darkness in the lower right section and the Bronze Age--a composite of the two occupying the entire left half of the inner circle and itself divided into three parts. Many cryptograms have been produced in which numbers in various sequences are substituted for letters, words, or even complete thoughts. In addition to this simple numerical cipher there are scores of others so complicated that no one without the key can hope to solve them. Imperfect pagination, though generally attributed to carelessness, often conceals important secrets. The first important word may be found by counting 100, the second by counting 90, the third by counting 80, and so on until the count of 10 is reached.
Two persons understanding the code could converse with each other by merely playing certain notes upon a piano or other instrument.
The system of exchanging letters of the alphabet for hieroglyphic figures is too easily decoded to be popular. Further help is also rendered by the fact that if the cryptogram be split up into words there are only three single letters which may form words: A, I, O. The secret alphabets of the ancients are comparatively easy to decode, the only requisites being a table of frequency, a knowledge of the language in which the cryptogram was originally written, a moderate amount of patience, and a little ingenuity.
But as these more elaborate devices were seldom employed by the ancients or by the mediæval philosophers and alchemists, they have no direct bearing upon religion and philosophy. Probably the most famous is the angelic writing, termed in the above plate "The Writing called Malachim." Its figures are supposedly derived from the constellations. Schamayim is "The Ocean of Spirit, " within which all created and uncreated things exist and by the life of which they are animated. All creation reflects the glory of Schamayim, the energy that filters into the spheres of the elements through the windows of the stars and planets. Figure 4 is the Qabbalistic sign of the elemental earth; Figure 8 represents the spiritual and invisible earth. Figure 14 demonstrates that atmosphere rushing in behind a falling object increases its velocity and apparently adds to its weight. The alchemists declared that salt was the first created substance produced by the fire (Schamayim) which flowed out of God. It is the inversion of Figure 26, indicating that its origin is from the lower fire and not the higher. The eternal world within the inner circle became manifest in the water (salt), the light (mercury), and the fire (sulphur) of the archetypal world, represented by the three circles (f, e, g) within the triangle of complete equality (h, i, k), which is in turn surrounded by the circle of the high throne. The whole diameter is the outflow of God, manifesting first in the heaven of heavens--the Schamayim, in which region human understanding cannot function. On the horizontal arms of the cross are the words The Tree of Life and The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The diagram on the left is called The Secrets of the Upper World, and the one on right The Secrets of the Underworld.
Figure 10 shows the dot, or point of rest, surrounded by a triangle enclosing a circle containing the names of the twelve tribes of Israel.
Here the young Prophet-to-be secured much of his information concerning the origin and doctrines of the Christian faith.
Khadijah was a woman of exceptional mentality and to her integrity and devotion must be ascribed the early success of the Islamic cause. Khadijah, solicitous over her husband's ascetic practices which were impairing his physical health, sometimes accompanied him in his weary vigil, and with womanly intuition sensed the travail of his soul. Mohammed was awakened in the night by the Angel Gabriel, who, after removing the Prophet's heart, washed the cavity with Zamzam water, and filled the heart itself with faith and science. When these did not come, however, such a despair filled his soul that he attempted self-destruction, only to be stopped in the very act of casting himself over a cliff by the sudden reappearance of Gabriel, who again assured the Prophet that the revelations needed by his people would be given to him as necessity arose. Often these attacks came without warning; at other times he would sit wrapped in a blanket to prevent a chill from the copious perspiration, and while apparently unconscious would dictate the various passages which a small circle of trusted friends would either commit to memory or reduce to writing. A’isha, the daughter of Abu Bekr, later became the wife of Mohammed, thus still further cementing the bond of fraternity between the two men. He then entered the Caaba itself, cleansed it of its idolatrous associations, and rededicated the structure to Allah, the monotheistic God of Islam. As Mohammed took the first mouthful of the poisoned food, the evil design was revealed to him either by the taste of the meat or, as the faithful believe, by divine intercession. Apparently he overtaxed his strength, for it was necessary to assist him into the house of A’isha, which opened into the court of the mosque. On the other hand, the more closely the life of Mohammed is scrutinized by dispassionate investigators, the more apparent become the finer qualities of his nature. He also accepted the invitations of slaves and sat at meals with servants, declaring himself to be a servant. The popular conception that Mohammed taught that woman had no soul and could attain heaven only through marriage is not substantiated by the words and attitude of the Prophet during his lifetime. Like the devotees of nearly all other faiths, the Mussulman originally faced the East while in prayer, but by a later decree he was ordered to turn his face toward Mecca. The "Ancient House," as the Caaba is called, is an irregular cube measuring about 38 feet in length, 35 feet in height, and 30 feet in width. From what is known of the man Mohammed, it is reasonable to suppose that these nobler and finer portions represent the actual doctrines of the Prophet; the remainder are obvious interpolations, some arising from misunderstanding and others direct forgeries calculated to satisfy the temporal ambitions of conquering Islam. Until such writings are discovered, the point under dispute must remain a source of controversy.
Six hundred years before Christ the phœnix of wisdom (Pythagoras?) spread its wings and died upon the altar of humanity, consumed by the sacrificial fire. The volcanic nature of the islands now existing in the Atlantic Ocean corroborates Plato's statement that the Atlantean continent was destroyed by volcanic cataclysms.
While enjoying the abundance natural to their semitropic location, the Atlanteans employed themselves also in the erection of palaces, temples, and docks. In its center, surrounded by a wall of gold, was a sanctuary dedicated to Cleito and Poseidon.
The supreme council of the gods is composed of twelve deities--six male and six female--which correspond to the positive and negative signs of the zodiac. The chief laws of the Atlantean kings were that they should not take up arms against each other and that they should come to the assistance of any of their number who was attacked.
Zeus, perceiving the wickedness of the Atlanteans, gathered the gods into his holy habitation and addressed them. The ten kings of Atlantis are the tetractys, or numbers, which are born as five pairs of opposites.
Both the sinking of Atlantis and the Biblical story of the "fall of man" signify spiritual involution--a prerequisite to conscious evolution. This is the axle mountain of the world, sacred among many races and symbolic of the human head, which rises out of the four elements of the body. The divine (Atlantean) progenitors of the Mayas and Quichés of Central America coexisted within the green and azure radiance of Gucumatz, the "plumed" serpent.
Thomas), issued from the waters and, after instructing the people in the essentials of civilization, rode out to sea on a magic raft of serpents to escape the wrath of the fierce god of the Fiery Mirror, Tezcatlipoca. Wherever the Atlanteans proselyted they erected pyramids and temples patterned after the great sanctuary in the City of the Golden Gates.
Carrying with them the sacred and secret doctrine, these Atlanteans established themselves in Egypt, where they became its first "divine" rulers. Being the esoteric god of the sun, Tammuz did not occupy a position among the first deities venerated by the Babylonians, who for lack of deeper knowledge looked upon him as a god of agriculture or a vegetation spirit. Ishtar demands that the keepers open the gates, declaring that if they do not she will shatter the doorposts and strike the hinges and raise up dead devourers of the living.
Thus cured of the infirmities inflicted on her, she retraces her way upward through the seven gates, at each of which she is reinvested with the article of apparel which the guardians had removed. According to one account, he was liberated by a wild boar which split the wood of the maternal tree with its tusks.
The pipes of Pan signify the natural harmony of the spheres, and the god himself is a symbol of Saturn because this planet is enthroned in Capricorn, whose emblem is a goat. In one he was gored to death like Adonis; in the other he emasculated himself under a pine tree and there died. Some regard the Cabiri as seven in number and refer to them as "the Seven Spirits of fire before the throne of Saturn." Others believe the Cabiri to be the seven sacred wanderers, later called the planets.
The Samothracian rites were particularly concerned with navigation, the Dioscuri--Castor and Pollux, or the gods of navigation--being among those propitiated by members of that cult. Thus the allegory of the Self murdered by the not-self is perpetuated through the religious mysticism of all peoples. Because of this remarkable experience, Odin is sometimes shown seated on a gallows tree and he became the patron deity of all who died by the noose.
The myth of the dying god is the key to both universal and individual redemption and regeneration, and those who do not comprehend the true nature of this supreme allegory are not privileged to consider themselves either wise or truly religious.
Pranaitis, Roman Catholic Priest; Master of Theology and Professor of the Hebrew Language at the Imperial Ecclesiastical Academy of the Roman Catholic Church in Old St.
The young prince's affection for his instructor became as great as that which he felt for his father.
For my part I had rather surpass the majority of mankind in the sublimer branches of learning, than in extent of power and dominion. Age after age paid him grateful tribute, generation after generation pondered over his theorems until by the sheer transcendency of his rational faculties Aristotle--"the master of those who know," as Dante has called him--became the actual conqueror of the very world which Alexander had sought to subdue with the sword. In the famous Pythagorean school at Crotona, philosophy was regarded as indispensable to the life of man. Today man, a sublime creature with infinite capacity for self-improvement, in an effort to be true to false standards, turns from his birthright of understanding--without realizing the consequences--and plunges into the maelstrom of material illusion. Here in the lurid turmoil of a great industrial, political, commercial inferno, men writhe in self-inflicted agony and, reaching out into the swirling mists, strive to clutch and hold the grotesque phantoms of success and power. In this physical empire, which man erects in the vain belief that he can outshine the kingdom of the celestials, everything is changed to stone, Fascinated by the glitter of gain, man gazes at the Medusa-like face of greed and stands petrified. The wise have therefore declared that none can attain to the highest in the science of knowing until first he has attained to the highest in the science of living.
Every activity of life was gradually disengaged from other interests and focalized upon the reasoning part. Neither can a race or nation attain true greatness until it has formulated an adequate philosophy and has dedicated its existence to a policy consistent with that philosophy.
After ascending the steps, the path is along the way of God the Father, either directly by inspiration or by various mediate means. Foreseeing the needs of that day, the philosophers of the ages have desired that into the structure of this new world shall be incorporated the truest and finest of all that has gone before. From this virginal state of unawareness grows the desire to become aware with its resultant improvement in the mental condition. Considering wisdom as synonymous with mental completeness, it is evident that such a state can exist only in the Whole, for that which is less than the Whole cannot possess the fullness of the All. Even in man's present state of imperfection it is dawning upon his realization that he can never be truly happy until he is perfect, and that of all the faculties contributing to his self-perfection none is equal in importance to the rational intellect. If one of these plutocrats should rise until he ruled the earth itself, what would he be but a petty despot seated on a grain of Cosmic dust? Ignorance of ignorance, then, is that self-satisfied state of unawareness in which man, knowing nothing outside the limited area of his physical senses, bumptiously declares there is nothing more to know! From the four corners of creation swells a mighty anthem of rejoicing, for here in the light of philosophy is revealed the purpose of existence; the wisdom and goodness permeating the Whole become evident to even man's imperfect intellect. Then as man's thoughts lift him heavenward, streets are lost in cities, cities in nations, nations in continents, continents in the earth, the earth in space, and space in an infinite eternity, until at last but two things remain: the Self and the goodness of God. He who has attained to the state of understanding thereby has so increased his capacity to know that he gradually incorporates within himself the various elements of the universe.
The world of philosophy lies neither to the right nor to the left, neither above nor below. The great mystical institutions of antiquity which invited man to enter into his divine inheritance have crumbled, and institutions of human scheming now stand where once the ancient houses of learning rose a mystery of fluted columns and polished marble.
It would prove that many apparently verbose and rambling authors were wordy for the sake of concealing words. With reverence the wise pierce the veil and with clearer vision contemplate the reality; but the ignorant, unable to distinguish between the false and the true, behold a universe of symbols. Secret alphabets also were invented, and whenever the secrets of the wise were committed to writing, characters meaningless to the uninformed were employed.
Thus mediæval philosophers disseminated their theories throughout Europe without evoking suspicion, since volumes containing these cryptograms could be subjected to the closest scrutiny without revealing the presence of the hidden message.
Many of the magnificent scientific and philosophic intellects of this period dared not publish their findings, because of the religious intolerance of their day. The differences between the two fonts are in many case so minute that it requires a powerful magnifying glass to detect them.
It is well known that ciphers were used for the same reason as early as the Council of Nicæa. Contrast the "i" in "wisdom" with the "i" in "understanding." In the former, the lines are curved and in the latter angular. There are probably a score of different systems used in the "Shakespeare" folio alone, some so intricate that they may forever baffle all attempts at their decipherment. The two accompanying alchemical cryptograms illustrate another form of the literal cipher involving the first letter of each word.
Instances of pictorial cipher are frequently found in Egyptian symbolism and early religious art.
There are also frequent instances in which the cryptographer purposely distorted or improperly clothed some figure in his drawing by placing the hat on backwards, the sword on the wrong side, or the shield on the wrong arm, or by employing some similar artifice. The acroamatic is unique in that the document containing it may be translated or reprinted without affecting the cryptogram. The creation myths of the world are acroamatic cryptograms, and the deities of the various pantheons are only cryptic characters which, if properly understood, become the constituents of a divine alphabet. The capitals of the six words in the inner circle, when properly arranged, also read ESTSOL. The axis of law connects the throne, of divine justice above with the throne of human judgment at the bottom of the picture. Between these two extremes is the larger section in which are blended the powers and impulses of both the superior and the inferior regions. The lowest division of the Bronze Age depicts ignorant man controlled by force, the central the partly awakened man controlled by jurisprudence, and the upper the spiritually illuminated man controlled by love. The reading of numerical ciphers usually depends upon the possession of specially arranged tables of correspondences.
The mispaginations found in the 1623 folio of "Shakespeare" and the consistent recurrence of similar errors in various volumes printed about the same period have occasioned considerable thought among scholars and cryptogrammatists.
Musical cryptograms can be involved to an inconceivable point; by certain systems it is possible to take an already existing musical theme and conceal in it a cryptogram without actually changing the composition in any way. Albert: Pike describes an arbitrary cipher based upon the various parts of the Knights Templars' cross, each angle representing a letter.
Thus any single character set off from the rest of the text must be one of these three letters. Its most familiar form is the Morse code for use in telegraphic and wireless communication. The mystics of the Middle Ages, borrowing the terminology of the various arts and sciences, evolved a system of cryptography which concealed the secrets of the human soul under terms generally applied to chemistry, biology, astronomy, botany, and physiology.
Advanced students of occult philosophy will come upon many valuable documents in which these figures are used.
These fifteen charts constitute a remarkable and invaluable addition to the few other known admittedly authentic Qabbalistic and Rosicrucian diagrams. Figure 5 is the Qabbalistic sign of the elemental fire; Figure 6 represents the spiritual and invisible fire. The essential nature of each element is occultly signified by the peculiar symbol and character assigned to it.
Figure 24 represents the six days of creation and proves that the elements are an outflow of the Divine Fire which, breaking up, becomes the substances of the tangible universe, as signified in Figure 25.
Its upper part signifies that water does not lack the Divine element, but as a universal mirror reflects the heavenly influences.
This chart is a diagrammatic exposition of the three layers of the macrocosmic and microcosmic auric eggs, showing the forces active within them.
The small circles at the points of the star symbolize the seven great Spirits before the throne, mentioned in the Book of Revelation, in the midst of which walks the Alpha and Omega--the Son of God. According to von Welling, when Lucifer wanted to control power, the influx of the divine light instantly ceased.


From below the circles of darkness reach upward, each divine principle being opposed by an infernal opposite.
Figures 11, 12, 13, 14, and 15 possibly are cipher symbols of the angels of the plagues, the name of the Antichrist, the signature of the beast of Babylon, and the name of the woman riding on the beast of blasphemy. Figure 5 shows the exact degree or angle of the planets' places as well as the individual fixed stars in the zodiac.
The plate explains the interblending of the spiritual and infernal powers in the creation of the universe. It represents completion of the process of regeneration and the consummation of the Great Work. At last one night in his fortieth year as he lay upon the floor of the cavern, enveloped in his cloak, a great light burst upon him. A strange creature, called Alborak, or the lightning bolt, was brought for the conveyance of the Prophet. On one occasion in later life when Abu Bekr referred to the gray hairs in his beard, Mohammed, lifting the end of his beard and looking at it, declared its whiteness to be due to the physical agony attendant upon his periods of inspiration.
Quietly, but industriously, Mohammed promulgated his doctrines among a small circle of powerful friends. He had already swallowed a small portion of the food, however, and for the remainder of his life he suffered almost constantly from the effects of the poison.
Here upon a tough pallet laid on the bare floor the prophet of Islam spent his last two hours on earth. At the time of the Deluge the sacred house was destroyed, but afterward was rebuilt by Abraham and his son Ishmael. In Nazareth the bird was again reborn from its own ashes, only to die upon the tree which had its roots in Adam's skull. They bridged the zones of sea and later dug a deep canal to connect the outer ocean with the central island, where stood the palaces And temple of Poseidon, which excelled all other structures in magnificence. Here the first ten princes of the island were born and here each year their descendants brought offerings. The six gods are Jupiter, Vulcan, Apollo, Mars, Neptune, and Mercury; the six goddesses are Juno, Ceres, Vesta, Minerva, Venus, and Diana. In matters of war and great moment the final decision was in the hands of the direct descendants of the family of Atlas.
This sacred mountain, upon whose summit stood the temple of the gods, gave rise to the stories of Olympus, Meru, and Asgard.
The six sky-born sages came into manifestation as centers of light bound together or synthesized by the seventh--and chief--of their order, the "feathered" snake.
Nearly all the great cosmologic myths forming the foundation of the various sacred books of the world are based upon the Atlantean Mystery rituals. The guardians of the gates beg her to be patient while they go to the queen of Hades from whom they secure permission to admit Ishtar, but only in the same manner as all others came to this dreary house. Adonis was born at midnight of the 24th of December, and through his unhappy death a Mystery rite was established that wrought the salvation of his people.
The Egyptians were initiated into the Mysteries of Pan, who was regarded as a phase of Jupiter, the Demiurgus. His body was taken to a cave by the Great Mother (Cybele), where it remained through the ages without decaying.
The Jews borrowed the name Sabaoth from these Mysteries and adopted it as one of the appellations of their supreme God. The Argonautic expedition, listening to the advice of Orpheus, stopped at the island of Samothrace for the purpose of having its members initiated into the Cabiric rites. The philosophic death and the philosophic resurrection are the Lesser and the Greater Mysteries respectively. Esoterically, the Hanged Man is the human spirit which is suspended from heaven by a single thread. Farewell." The receipt of this amazing letter caused no ripple in the placid life of Aristotle, who replied that although the discourse had been communicated to the multitudes, none who had not heard him deliver the lecture (who lacked spiritual comprehension) could understand its true import. He who did not comprehend the dignity of the reasoning power could not properly be said to live. The precious span of his earthly years he devotes to the pathetically futile effort to establish himself as an enduring power in a realm of unenduring things. Like other branches of human thought, it has been made materialistic--"practical"--and its activities so directionalized that they may also contribute their part to the erection of this modern world of stone and steel. In the ancient world there was another and most vital factor which entered into the production of rational intellects and which is entirely beyond the comprehension of modern thinkers: namely, initiation into the philosophic Mysteries. During the World War, when so-called civilization hurled one half of itself against the other in a frenzy of hate, men ruthlessly destroyed something more precious even than human life: they obliterated those records of human thought by which life can be intelligently directionalized.
It is a divine law that the sum of previous accomplishment shall be the foundation of each new order of things. The human intellect is ever surrounded by forms of existence beyond the estimation of its partly developed faculties.
No part of creation is complete; hence each part is imperfect to the extent that it falls short of entirety. Through the labyrinth of diversity only the illumined mind can, and must, lead the soul into the perfect light of unity. He who knows no life save the physical is merely ignorant; but he who declares physical life to be all-important and elevates it to the position of supreme reality--such a one is ignorant of his own ignorance. Here the yearning heart of humanity finds that companionship which draws forth from the innermost recesses of the soul that great store of good which lies there like precious metal in some deep hidden vein. Swinging open the doors of this antechamber, the illumined pass into the greater and more perfect existence. The unknown is merely that which is yet to be included within the consciousness of the seeker.
Like a subtle essence permeating all space and all substance, it is everywhere; it penetrates the innermost and the outermost parts of all being. The white-robed sages who gave to the world its ideals of culture and beauty have gathered their robes about them and departed from the sight of men. It may well be said of Nature--the Great Mother--that she is ever tracing strange characters upon the surface of things, but only to her eldest and wisest sons as a reward for their faith and devotion does she reveal the cryptic alphabet which is the key to the import of these tracings.
In order to preserve the fruitage of their intellectual labors for mankind, these pioneers of progress concealed their discoveries in ciphers, trusting that future generations, more kindly than their own, would discover and appreciate their learning. Originally, the cipher messages were concealed only in the italicized words, sentences, or paragraphs, because the italic letters, being more ornate than the Roman letters, offered greater opportunity for concealing the slight but necessary variations. Every cryptogram based upon the arrangement or combination of the letters of the alphabet is called a literal cipher.
Parables and allegories have been used since remote antiquity to present moral truths in an attractive and understandable manner.
The initiated few comprehend the true nature of this alphabet, but the uninitiated many worship the letters of it as gods. Upon the latter throne is seated a queen with a scepter in her hand, before whom stands the winged goddess Nemesis--the angel of judgment. Both the second and third circles revolve upon the axis of law, but the divine source, of law--Heavenly Justice--is concealed by clouds.
The numerical cryptograms of the Old Testament are so complicated that only a few scholars versed in rabbinical lore have ever sought to unravel their mysteries. In Baconian cryptograms, all page numbers ending in 89 seem to have a special significance. The pennants upon the notes may conceal the cipher, or the actual sounds of the notes may be exchanged for syllables of similar sound. The many curious alphabets that have been devised are rendered worthless, however, by the table of recurrence. This form of cipher may be complicated somewhat by embodying dots and dashes into a document in which periods and colons are dots, while commas and semicolons are dashes. Ciphers of this nature can only be decoded by individuals versed in the deep philosophic principles upon which these mediæval mystics based their theories of life. Lucifer's world (which later became the solar system), with all its legions of spirits (who in their essence were Schamayim) reflecting his ideas and inverting the divine light, was turned into darkness. The elemental inhabitants of the planes differ in goodness according to their proximity to the center of wickedness (A B). In air are suspended also the seed germs by which water is impregnated and made capable of bringing forth forms of organic and inorganic life. The small circle on the left containing a triangle and cross is named The Tree of Life, and that on the right The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Overcome with a sense of perfect peace and understanding in the blessedness of the celestial presence, he lost consciousness. Alborak is described as white animal of the shape and size of a mule, with the head of a woman and the tail of a peacock. When the enthusiasm of his followers finally forced his hand and he publicly announced his mission, he was already the leader of a strong and well-organized faction. Under his protection Mecca increased in power and glory, becoming the focal point of a great annual pilgrimage, which even to this day winds across the desert in the months of pilgrimage and numbers over threescore thousand in its train. When she saw that her aged husband was suffering intense pain, A’isha--then but a girl of twenty--lifting the gray head of the man she had known from infancy and who must have seemed more like a father than a husband, supported him in her arms until the end. In the southeast corner of the wall at a convenient distance above the ground (about five feet) is embedded the sacred and mysterious black stone or aerolite of Abraham. The maiden was very beautiful, and after the sudden death of her parents she was wooed by Poseidon, who begat by her five pairs of male children. A network of bridges and canals was created by the Atlanteans to unite the various parts of their kingdom. Poseidon's own temple, its exterior entirely covered with silver and its pinnacles with gold, also stood within the citadel.
Jupiter rides his eagle as the symbol of his sovereignty over the world, and Juno is seated upon a peacock, the proper symbol of her haughtiness and glory. No king had the power of life and death over his kinsmen without the assent of a majority of the ten. The City of the Golden Gates--the capital of Atlantis--is the one now preserved among numerous religions as the City of the Gods or the Holy City. The mounds in Normandy and Britain, as well as those of the American Indians, are remnants of a similar culture. Like many other Savior-Gods, he is referred to as a "shepherd" or "the lord of the shepherd seat." Tammuz occupies the remarkable position of son and husband of Ishtar, the Babylonian and Assyrian Mother-goddess. Ishtar thereupon descends through the seven gates which lead downward into the depths of the underworld.
In the Jewish month of Tammuz (another name for this deity) he was gored to death by a wild boar sent by the god Ars (Mars). Pan represented the impregnating power of the sun and was the chief of a horde rustic deities, and satyrs. Cybele, the Great Mother, signifies the vivifying powers of the universe, and Atys that aspect of the spiritual intellect which is suspended between the divine and animal spheres.
During the time the Sabazian Mysteries were celebrated in Rome, the cult gained many votaries and later influenced the symbolism of Christianity.
Wisdom, not death, is the reward for this voluntary sacrifice during which the human soul, suspended above the world of illusion, and meditating upon its unreality, is rewarded by the achievement of self-realization.
Therefore, when through innate perverseness a member either voluntarily withdrew or was forcibly ejected from the philosophic fraternity, a headstone was set up for him in the community graveyard; for he who had forsaken intellectual and ethical pursuits to reenter the material sphere with its illusions of sense and false ambition was regarded as one dead to the sphere of Reality.
Paul was subject to fits; Paracelsus was an infamous quack, the Comte di Cagliostro a mountebank, and the Comte de St.-Germain the outstanding crook of history!
Only through the realization of infinite goodness and infinite accomplishment can the peace of the inner Self be assured. The mythological and historical Redeemers of every age were all personifications of that power. Consequently, a great philosopher is one whose threefold life--physical, mental, and spiritual--is wholly devoted to and completely permeated by his rationality.
Just as an intense physical existence emphasizes the importance of physical things, or just as the monastic metaphysical asceticism establishes the desirability of the ecstatic state, so complete philosophic absorption ushers the consciousness of the thinker into the most elevated and noble of all spheres--the pure philosophic, or rational, world. A man who had demonstrated his peculiar mental and spiritual fitness was accepted into the body of the learned and to him was revealed that priceless heritage of arcane lore preserved from generation to generation. Truly did Mohammed declare the ink of philosophers to be more precious than the blood of martyrs.
Where incompleteness is, it also follows that ignorance must be coexistent; for every part, while capable of knowing its own Self, cannot become aware of the Self in the other parts. Philosophy assists man to develop the sense of appreciation; for as it reveals the glory and the sufficiency of knowledge, it also unfolds those latent powers and faculties whereby man is enabled to master the secrets of the seven spheres. In every man and woman these two spheres are connected by a gate which leads from the not-self and its concerns to the Self and its realizations. Nevertheless, this little earth is bathed as of old in the sunlight of its Providential Generator. If those interested in Freemasonic research would give serious consideration to this subject, they might find in books and manuscripts of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries the information necessary to bridge the gap in Masonic history that now exists between the Mysteries of the ancient world and the Craft Masonry of the last three centuries. Some--such as the famous angelic writing--are still retained in the higher degrees of Masonry.
Sometimes the letters vary a trifle in size; at other times in thickness or in their ornamental flourishes. The "o" in "more" differs only from the "o" in "wisdom" in that it a tiny line continues from the top over towards the "r." The "a" in "than" is thinner and more angular than the "a" in "are," while the "r" in "riches" differs from that in "desired" in that the final upright stroke terminates in a ball instead of a sharp point. In addition to the simple pictorial cipher, there is a more technical form in which words or letters are concealed by the number of stones in a wall, by the spread of birds' wings in flight, by ripples on the surface of water, or by the length and order of lines used in shading. The acroamatic cryptogram is a pictorial cipher drawn in words and its symbolism must be so interpreted. All of the symbols and figures ornamenting the plate are devoted to a detailed amplification of the principles here outlined. There are also codes used by the business world which can be solved only by the use of a private code book. Much information relating to the invisible nature of man is concealed under what seem to be chemical experiments or scientific speculations. E to F marks the lower region, called "The Gathering of the Waters and the Production of the Virgin Earth, " or "Ares.
They are the four rivers spoken of in Genesis, having their source in the one river, Figure W, which represents the elements superimposed on one another.
These bodies are the twelve fundamental pillars of the true invisible church, and when these twelve bodies are multiplied by their six sides the magical number 72 results.
Figure 30 is the character of fire in all its attributes, and Figure M (the same inverted), water in all its powers. From the lowest of these flames proceeds the first divine outflow, shown by two parallel lines descending through the throne of Saturn (the Spirit Orifelis, through whom God manifested Himself). Lucifer's Schamayim thereupon became a contracted disc, a tangible substance; and Chaos came into existence. The earth's surface (c) divides the subterranean elementals from those of the outer water, air, and fire (d, c, and X).
The grotesque figures seen in crystal caves and frost pictures upon windows are caused by these aerial impressions. In the center of the diagram is the Trinity, joined with the superior and inferior planes by lines of activity.
Figure 15 is an unsatisfactory attempt to show the comparative sizes of the suns and planets and their distances from each other. It probably indicates the positions of the sun, moon, and planets at the moment of their genesis. When he came to himself again the Angel Gabriel stood before him, exhibiting a silken shawl with mysterious characters traced upon it. According to some versions, Mohammed merely rode Alborak to Jerusalem, where, dismounting upon Mount Moriah, he caught hold of the lower rung of a golden ladder lowered from heaven and, accompanied by Gabriel, ascended through the seven spheres separating he earth from the inner surface of the empyrean.
Fearing Mohammed's growing prestige, the people of Mecca, waiving the time-honored tradition that blood could not be spilt within the holy city, decided to exterminate Islam by assassinating the Prophet. 11, when his final illness came upon him, Mohammed insisted that the subtle effects of the poison were the indirect cause of his approaching end. He never permitted his family to use for personal ends any of the alms or tithe money given by his people.
When first given to that patriarch by the Angel Gabriel this stone was of such strong whiteness as to be visible from every part of the earth, but late, it became black because of the sins of man.
It is probable that the site of the Caaba was originally occupied by a prehistoric stone altar or ring of uncut monoliths similar to those of Stonehenge.
The great courtyard around the building contains a number of holy objects, and is bounded by a colonnade which originally consisted of 360 pillars. Louis Germain, who admitted the existence of an Atlantic continent connected with the Iberian Peninsula and with Mauritania and prolonged toward the south so as to include some regions of desert climate. Poseidon apportioned his continent among these ten, and Atlas, the eldest, he made overlord of the other nine. The interior of the temple was of ivory, gold, silver, and orichalch, even to the pillars and floor. Here is the archetype of the New Jerusalem, with its streets paved with gold and its twelve gates shining with precious stones.
In the midst of the Atlantean program of world colonization and conversion, the cataclysms which sank Atlantis began. Ishtar--to whom the planer Venus was sacred--was the most widely venerated deity of the Babylonian and Assyrian pantheon. At the first gate the great crown is removed from her head, at the second gate the earrings from her ears, at the third gate the necklace from her neck, at the fourth gate the ornaments from her breast, at the fifth gate the girdle from her waist, at the sixth gate the bracelets from her hands and feet, and at the seventh gate the covering cloak of her body. Atys imparted his immortality to the tree beneath which he died, and Cybele took the tree with her when she removed the body.
The Mother of the gods, loving Atys, gave him a starry hat, signifying celestial powers, but Atys (mankind), falling in love with a nymph (symbolic of the lower animal propensities), forfeited his divinity and lost his creative powers. In the rituals of the Cabiri is to be traced a form of pine-tree worship, for this tree, sacred to Atys, was first trimmed into the form of a cross and then cut down in honor of the murdered god whose body was discovered at its foot. The life represented by the thraldom of the senses the Pythagoreans conceived to be spiritual death, while they regarded death to the sense-world as spiritual life. In spite of man's geocentricism, there is something in the human mind that is reaching out to philosophy--not to this or that philosophic code, but simply to philosophy in the broadest and fullest sense.
He who has a little more rationality than his neighbor is a little better than his neighbor. This heritage of philosophic truth is the matchless treasure of all ages, and each disciple admitted into these brotherhoods of the wise made, in turn, his individual contribution to this store of classified knowledge. Priceless documents, invaluable records of achievement, knowledge founded on ages of patient observation and experimentation by the elect of the earth--all were destroyed with scarcely a qualm of regret. That which is superficial may he allowed to perish; that which is fundamental and essential must remain, regardless of cost. Thus wisdom eventually results from the effort to cope rationally with the problem of the unknown. Philosophically considered, growth from the standpoint of human evolution is a process proceeding from heterogeneity to homogeneity.
It begins with understanding, its duration is forever, and upon the plane of eternity it is consummated.
To those, however, who grasp the import and dignity of Being, these are but phantom shapes, illusions of the senses-arbitrary limits imposed by man's ignorance upon the duration of Deity.
In the mystic this gate is the heart, and through spiritualization of his emotions he contacts that more elevated plane which, once felt and known, becomes the sum of the worth-while. Later, Lord Bacon is believed to have had two Roman alphabets specially prepared in which the differences were so trivial that it is almost impossible for experts to distinguish them. These minor differences disclose the presence of the two alphabets employed in writing the sentence. Such cryptograms are not obvious, and must be decoded with the aid of an arbitrary measuring scale, the length of the lines determining the letter or word concealed.
Because they furnish an economical and efficient method of transmitting confidential information, the use of such codes is far more prevalent than the average person has any suspicion. Every student of symbolism and philosophy, therefore, should be reasonably well acquainted with the underlying principles of cryptography; in addition to serving him well in his researches, this art furnishes a fascinating method of developing the acuteness of the mental faculties. The wise have said that nothing is perfect until it has been dissolved, separated, and again united so that it becomes a body composed of twelve bodies, like the cube. The globe to the right contains the word Light, and the one to the left, Jehovah Elohim in the upper part and Darkness in the lower part.
Passing through the boundary of the celestial universe and the 22 spheres of the lower system, the lines end at point B, the throne of Lucifer, in whom the divine outpouring is concentrated and reflected. The elementals of the upper strata (the upper half of c, and all of d, e, and X) represent an ascending scale of virtue, while those of the lower strata (the lower half of c, and all of f, g, and A B) represent a descending scale of depravity. While the air elementals are great and wise, they are treacherous and confused because amenable to both good and evil impressions. Figure 6 is the Microcosm, with the planets and signs of the zodiac corresponding to the different parts of its form. At the gate of each sphere stood me of the Patriarchs, whom Mohammed saluted as he entered the various planes. All the different groups combined in this undertaking so that the guilt for the crime might thereby be more evenly distributed. It is related that during his last sickness he rose one night and visited a burial ground on the outskirts of Medina, evidently believing that he, too, would soon be numbered with the dead. This black stone, oval in shape and about seven inches in diameter, was broken in the seventh century and is now held together by a silver mounting. Like the temple at Jerusalem, the Caaba has undergone many vicissitudes, and the present structure does not antedate the seventeenth century of the Christian Era. Opening into the courtyard are nineteen gates, the sacred and significant number of the Metonic Cycle and also the number of stones in the inner ring of Stonehenge. Again the phœnix suffered, this time from the poison of Kheibar, and from its charred ashes rose to spread its wings across the face of Mongolia, where in the twelfth century Genghis Khan established the rule of wisdom. Poseidon further called the country Atlantis and the surrounding sea the Atlantic in honor of Atlas.
The temple contained a colossal statue of Poseidon standing in a chariot drawn by six winged horses, about him a hundred Nereids riding on dolphins. The Initiate-Priests of the Sacred Feather who promised to come back to their missionary settlements never returned; and after the lapse of centuries tradition preserved only a fantastic account of gods who came from a place where the sea now is. Ishtar remonstrates as each successive article of apparel is taken from her, bur the guardian tells her that this is the experience of all who enter the somber domain of death.
Atys remained three days in the tomb, rose upon a date corresponding with Easter morn, and by this resurrection overcame death for all who were initiated into his Mysteries. It is thus evident that Atys represents the human consciousness and that his Mysteries are concerned with the reattainment of the starry hat. He who functions on a higher plane of rationality than the rest of the world is termed the greatest thinker. What was knowledge, what was truth, beauty, love, idealism, philosophy, or religion when compared to man's desire to control an infinitesimal spot in the fields of Cosmos for an inestimably minute fragment of time?
In time, therefore, the isolated consciousness of the individual fragments is reunited to become the complete consciousness of the Whole. Today man worships his own accomplishments, and either relegates the immensities of time and space to the background of his consciousness or disregards them entirely. The philosopher lives and thrills with the realization of this duration, for to him this infinite period has been designed by the All-Wise Cause as the time of all accomplishment. In the philosopher, reason is the gate between the outer and the inner worlds, the illumined mind bridging the chasm between the corporeal and the incorporeal. Men continue to laugh and cry, to love and hate; Some still dream of a nobler world, a fuller life, a more perfect realization.
Only philosophy can teach man to be born well, to live well, to die well, and in perfect measure be born again. The shape and proportion of a building, the height of a tower, the number of bars in a window, the folds of a man's garments--even the proportions or attitude of the human body--were used to conceal definite figures or characters which could be exchanged for letters or words by a person acquainted with the code.
An examination of them might reveal musical cryptograms, for it is quite certain that Lord Bacon was well acquainted with the manner of their construction.
Discrimination and observation are indispensable to the seeker after knowledge, and no study is equal to cryptography as a means of stimulating these powers. F to G marks the circle of the subterranean air, which is more dense and coarse than that in the outer space, C to D.
From him the divine light irradiates in succession to d (Capricorn), e (Gemini), f (Libra), g (Taurus), h (Pisces), i (Aquarius), k (Cancer), l (Virgo), m (Aries), n (Leo), o (Scorpio), p (Sagittarius), thence back to d. The mighty elemental beings who inhabit the watery light fire of the region X cannot be deceived by the spirits of darkness. Figure 3 is true oil of vitriol, composed of a circle with two diameters and two reversed half-circles hanging below. The words at the left are The Tree of Life; those at the right, The Tree of the Knowledge of good and Evil.
Then Gabriel spoke in a clear and wonderful voice, declaring Mohammed to be the Prophet of the living God. Discovering the danger in time, Mohammed left his friend Ali in his bed and fled with Abu Bekr from the city, and after adroitly eluding the Meccans, joined the main body of his followers that had preceded him to Yathrib (afterwards called Medina). At this time he told an attendant that the choice had been offered him of continuing his physical life or going to his Lord, and that he had chosen to meet his Maker.
His time he divided into three parts, namely: the first he gave to God, the second to his family, and the third to himself.
Seven great minarets tower above the Caaba, and one of the sacred ceremonials in connection with the building includes seven circumambulations about the central Caaba in an apparent effort to portray the motion of the celestial bodies. Circling the mighty desert of Gobi, the phœnix again gave up its form, which now lies buried in a glass sarcophagus under a pyramid bearing upon it the ineffable figures of the Mysteries. Before the birth of his ten sons, Poseidon divided the continent and the coastwise sea into concentric zones of land and water, which were as perfect as though turned upon a lathe. The story of her descent into the underworld in search presumably for the sacred elixir which alone could restore Tammuz to life is the key to the ritual of her Mysteries.
Enraged upon beholding Ishtar, the Mistress of Hades inflicts upon her all manner of disease and imprisons her in the underworld. Merely to satisfy some whim or urge of ambition man would uproot the universe, though well he knows that in a few short years he must depart, leaving all that he has seized to posterity as an old cause for fresh contention. Philosophers are nor born nor do they die; for once having achieved the realization of immortality, they are immortal. Thus godhood is born within the one who sees, and from the concerns of men he rises to the concerns of gods. In both the heart and mind of man the gates which lead from mortality to immortality are still ajar. Into this band of the elect--those who have chosen the life of knowledge, of virtue, and of utility--the philosophers of the ages invite YOU. In this denser atmosphere the stellar influences and celestial impulses are crystallized into corporeal spirits, thus forming the multitude of forms which exist without knowledge of their own fiery source. From it all things proceed and to it all must return again, to become one with the fiery water of divine understanding. Figure 21 represents darkness, for it is the loosening of the subterrene destructive principle. The zodiacal circles represent twelve orders of great and beneficent Spirits, and the smaller circles within the ring of fixed stars mark the orbits of the sacred planets. They love the creatures of the waters, for the watery element (d) proceeded from the fiery water (X). Then comes the circle of the visible constellations and fixed stars; within this is the solar system with the sun as the center (l).
Another order of the Patriarchs and prophets is given which places Jesus at the gate of the seventh heaven, and upon reaching this Point Mohammed is said to have requested Jesus to intercede for him before the throne of God. Upon this incident-called the Hegira or "flight"--is based the Islamic chronological system. 930, the famous black stone was captured by the Carmathians, in whose possession it remained over twenty years and it is a moot question whether the stone finally returned by them in exchange far a princely ransom was actually the original block or a substitute. After the lapse of six hundred years from the death of Genghis Khan, did Napoleon Bonaparte--who believed himself to be the man of destiny--contact in his wanderings this strange legend of the continual periodic rebirth of wisdom? Two zones of land and three of water surrounded the central island, which Poseidon caused to be irrigated with two springs of water--one warm and the other cold. Tammuz, whose annual festival took place just before the summer solstice, died in midsummer in the ancient month which bore his name, and was mourned with elaborate ceremonies.
Thus comparative rational development is the true gauge of the individual's evolutionary status. Having once communed with Self, they realize that within there is an immortal foundation that will not pass away. G is the region of the central fire of the element earth, a coarse fire in contradistinction to the divine fiery Schamayim. These six pyramids, each consisting of four triangles, signify the elements, and produce the magical number 24, which refers to the Elders before the Throne. They are perfect, as can be seen from their symbol, for no more perfect form can be produced out of the dot than the circle. Mortal man cannot endure the society of these fiery spirits, but gains wisdom from them through the creatures of the waters in which they continually mirror themselves. Did he feel the spreading wings of the phœnix within himself and did he believe the hope of the world had taken flesh in him? The manner of his death is unknown, but some of the accusations made against Ishtar by Izdubar (Nimrod) would indicate that she, indirectly at least, had contributed to his demise. Upon this living, vibrant base--Self--they erect a civilization which will endure after the sun, the moon, and the stars have ceased to be.
The sphere of the starry heavens likewise has its opposite in the sphere of the subterranean air; and the sphere of the upper air (or subtle vaporous water) has its opposite in the sphere E to F. Figure 59 represents this solar system, with W and X as the locality of the Garden of Eden.
The resurrection of Tammuz was the occasion of great rejoicing, at which time he was hailed as a "redeemer" of his people. The focal point, D to E, between the three higher and the three lower spheres, is called "The Reservoir." It receives impressions from both the superior and the inferior regions and is common to both. This would explain why he was moved to believe himself predestined to establish the kingdom of Christ on earth and is, perhaps, the clue to his little-understood friendliness toward the Moslem.
The soul of man has not been deprived of its wings; they are merely folded under its garment of flesh. Philosophy is ever that magic power which, sundering the vessel of clay, releases the soul from its bondage to habit and perversion. The 64,800 is the number of the fallen angels, and the last one year signifies the liberation of Lucifer and return to his original estate.
This changes the respective positions of all the other planets except Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, which retain their respective circles. Still as of old, the soul released can spread its wings and soar to the very source of itself.



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