MEDITATIONS ON THE MYSTERIES
IN the intervals passed at home this winter and spring Mary wrote [in her
diary] a number of meditations of very profound character, on the mysteries,
Egyptian, Hebrew, Greek, and others, at a length which admits only of a few
brief examples here. They form a valuable confirmation of the declaration of
February 24 . – The Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle corresponds to the King’s Chamber of the Great Pyramid, and the Mercy-Seat to the Coffer. (1) Both the Holy of Holies and the King’s Chamber represent, then, the Final Dispensation and the reign of Christ; in other words, the kingdom of God. The Mercy-Seat and the Coffer represent the Christ-Nature, the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; and the word Mercy denotes that the basis and the most characteristic feature of that nature is Mercy to all creatures.
It is the Fourth Generation that shall enter into the King’s Chamber. Then shall be the making-known – the Gospel of Interpretation.
“Behold, I will make all things new.” The Fourth Generation is the “King’s
Daughter, all glorious within, whose raiment is of wrought gold.” Mary Magdalen, who came early to the Sepulchre, while it was yet
dark, and Esther, who stood in the Ante-Chamber waiting for the king, typify the
time immediately preceding the
golden sceptre which he held out to her. They were of the Ante-Chamber; they entered not into the kingdom; and they are types of the Woman who shall usher the world into the Ante-Chamber of the Pyramid; who shall come while it is yet dark and ere the sun be risen upon the earth.
The outer open court of the Tabernacle, containing the brazen Altar and Laver, corresponds to the descending passage of the Pyramid, and extends from Noah, the Covenant of the Flood, to Moses. The Covered House corresponds to the commencement of the Ascending Passage; it contains the seven-branched Candle-stick and the Table of Shew-Bread; this is the Second Generation. The Third Generation is the Christian. It extends from Jesus to the first dark and low passage symbolising Materialism. It is typified by the grand gallery which corresponds to the Sanctuary of the Tabernacle containing the Golden Altar. According to this, the Mosaic and Christian Dispensations make One Covered House, divided into two parts: the first the Holy Place, the second the Sanctuary. Then comes the Veil, corresponding to the Ante-Chamber, which Veil is fourfold, Blue, Purple, Scarlet, and White, corresponding to the entry to the Dark Passage Nº. 1; then to the entry to the Ante-Chamber; then to the entry to the Dark Passage Nº. 2; then to the entry to the King’s Chamber. The Veil and the Holy of Holies compose the Tent, and together make up the Neck and Head, the Fourth Generation ushered in by Esther and Mary Magdalen.
Shrovetide, February 26, 1884. – The Kabalistic and Hermetic secret regarding the Moon is one which throws a flood of light upon the Gnostic theory connected with Materialisation, and the hidden meaning of certain Hebrew and other Myths.
In the Kabala we find the tenth Sephirah dejected from
the triple enumeration which connects all the other nine one with another; and
we learn that this separation and isolation is on account of the peculiar
function and character assigned to the tenth Sephirah.
This Sephirah – Malkuth
by name – is in the Kabala denominated as the Wife of the Microprosopus, the Moon, the Spouse, the Church, the Virgin,
part is called Rachel, the Wife of Jacob.” The Greeks said of the Moon, that in her beneficent aspect she was Artemis or Phoebe, and in her malignant aspect, Hecate.
In the Greek mysteries of
All these parables become plain the moment we understand that Malkuth, or Luna, represents Karma. Of course, Karma has two faces, according to the character of the soul or postulant.
As the Earth in the process of individuation throws off its satellite or Moon, so Man in process of individuation throws off his Karma or Fate, and fixes it as his constant attendant and control, whether for good or for evil. Thus his Karma or Genius, personified, becomes his Initiator, and follows and precedes him through all changes. The good face, or face of Artemis, reflects to him the Divine Light of her brother, Phoibos; the dark or evil face is to him a portent of malignant influence; it is the face of Hecate the Avenger.
And so also says the Hebrew parable. Jacob is the human soul, whom his mother, Rebekah – the same as Demeter, Intelligence – sends into a
far country, remote from his father’s house – the lower world into which the
Soul descends – and there he falls in love with Rachel, the Moon in her good
aspect, and longs for this beautiful influence. But no sooner does he think to
embrace her than he rinds himself face to face with Leah, the evil Karma. And it
is told him that he must first expiate his time with her before he can be
rewarded with the blessing of Rachel. Thus the wife of the Soul has a twofold
aspect, and throughout the story the alternation of his relations to both
continues. Joseph, the Prince and Genius of the Spiritual
It is thus not difficult to see how a materialising tendency in occult mysteries would readily convert Malkuth into an evil influence. The more spiritual science is, the more it tends to dwell on the Good and on the Beautiful; and the more material science is, the more it lowers itself to association with evil and hideous influences. Hence wicked and irreligious men are often superstitious, and dread spectral monitions, fluidic apparitions, and ghostly terrors, simply because the Moon smites them by night. And their evil life brings upon their souls the avenging arm of Hecate Triformis, she who as a horse is swift, as a dog is sure, and as a lion implacable. These souls fear the Lunar power, and in their terrors of hellish influences may be discerned their secret and interior man’s foreknowledge of the evil Karma which they are building up against themselves in other lives to come.
Until the Soul falls into matter, she cannot, of course, have any
Karma. Karma is the appanage and result of Time and of Manifestation. The Blessed are free of Fate; therefore Malkuth, the tenth Sephirah, is otherwise called Actuality. For that is Actual which is done in Time and is subject to the three tenses. The world of Malkuth is the world of Form, or of Effects; the other Sephiroth inhere in the Formless worlds of pure Causes. Observe that Demeter, searching for her lost Daughter, seeks in vain for nine days and nights. She visits the nine Abodes of Heaven, and inquires of all the Gods in turn. The Soul, precipitated into Hades – Matter – has entered the world of Effects, and is no longer to be found in the world of pure Causes. She has come under the domain of Fate, of Actuality, of Leah; and it is therefore Hecate alone who is able to reveal her whereabouts to Demeter. Then, by the aid of Hermes, or, as Orpheus says, of Bacchus, Demeter recovers the lost one. Of course, Hermes and Bacchus, in this connection, represent the same idea – the Spirit, the Divine Particle, by which the Soul is finally redeemed from Matter; that is, the Christ, descending into the very jaws of Hades to rescue the “Souls in Prison” (St. Peter).
Hence the idea of certain occultists, who are not divine Seers, that evil Souls and decaying Egos actually go to the Moon; that is, to the physical Satellite. This notion is, of course, a corrupt and materialised form of the kabalistic doctrine just stated. Malkuth is not the physical Moon, but the archetypal idea of the Moon; and the relation of this Archetype to the Soul is the relation of cognates, whereas the relation of the physical Satellite to the Soul is an incongruous one, for it involves a relation of two things which are not cognates. The kabalistic doctrine, of course, compares like with like, and preserves the affinity of Similars. The teaching of the mere occultist is unscientific, and creates confusion of substance. “The woman shall not lie with the beast,” says the sacred book; that is, the spiritual can hold no legitimate and intimate relation to the physical. It is for this reason that the idea of the redemption of the Soul by means of physical blood-shedding is an impossible and a blasphemous idea, and that a physical incarnation of God is absurd in esoteric science. Such physiological processes can have no relation to the Soul; they represent the physical, and cannot be brought into effect as spiritual realities. The Soul is unaffected by them; they belong to Time, not to Being.
All kabalistic ideas are Primaries; they stand for Actualities, not of Time but of Mind; they are substantial ideas, and not their reflects translated into the objectiva of Matter. Whoso reads the Secondary and the Reflect where the Primary and the Original is intended, may indeed be an occultist, but he is not a mystic, – an epopt.
Malkuth to the servant of God is Rachel, the beautiful, the
loving, the gracious. The pure soul may be safe in her
keeping, for the Moon is favourable unto those who love God. Precious things
come forth from the Moon. Artemis is the Patroness of the chaste and virginal, –
that is, of the soul undefiled with the traffic of the flesh. In this kindly
aspect Malkuth is
our souls lights up their dark recesses and
revivifies our interior reminiscences. And this light of the kindly
The Triads of the Kabala are three. The first is Kether, Chokmah, and Binah – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (feminine). The second is Gedulah, Geburah, and Tiphareth. The third is Netzach, Hod, and Jesod. Now if the original Duality of the Kabala, Ain-Suph, the Father-Mother, be taken as the root of the Triads, we should have a primary Trinity of which the third term [Kether] would be the first of the second triad. The Christian doctrine has adopted the order just recapitulated. But there is a higher and more purely Kabalistic and Hermetic view, which is as follows: – The first Triad would thus be [Ain-Suph, Kether] Father, Mother, Son. In the second [Triad], the son [Kether] becomes the Father, and we have the order Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In this second Trinity, the last term [Binah], that is, the Spirit, is feminine, and this was the case with the Gnostics. The Hebrews always read from right to left, consequently the Kabala places Ain on the right side. The right-hand column, Jachin, is the masculine column – Wisdom, Love, Energy; the left-hand column, Boaz, is the feminine column – Understanding, Justice, Strength. The synthetic Sephiroth are Thought, Beauty, Motion (or Time), and Fate – the root of the Tree of Life. Note that thus [i.e. with Ain-Suph] we have twelve numbers in place of ten. And this represents the higher and complete Kabalistic reckoning.
Kether (Zeus), who in the first Trinity is the Son, is
called in the Kabala the I AM; The Personality. He is Adon, the Lord. But the manifestation which takes place by
Him is completed only in the evolution of Chokmah and
Binah, Son and Spirit, because, says the Kabala,
Volition, which is a product of personal self-consciousness, needed for its
evolution a dual concurrence. Chokmah represents the
Effulgence, potential in Adonai, but presenting itself only in its dual aspect
Light and Heat in the double procession of masculine and feminine principles.
Therefore Binah, the Holy Spirit, is called the House
of Wisdom, the Fire self-consuming, the Face of the Sun.
Chokmah, or the Son, is Wisdom itself, is Light, is
the Sun. The Spirit therefore proceeds through the Son, and is called the
Daughter by opposition with Suph, the Mother of the
first Trinity. Chokmah, the Son, is God as Creator,
“By whom He made the Worlds.” But Adonai (Kether)
could not make the Worlds by Wisdom unless Wisdom were
with Intelligence; for as male and female, are the Image of God, it must be the
Duality, and not the Unit, by whom Creation occurs. This Holy Spirit, therefore,
is in the Son and through Him, and both are in Adonai, the Lord. Adonai is the
First Effulgence, the Light shining in Darkness, hence
He is called
or bright Effulgence, the Radiance of Concentration. Kether is Thought, Chokmah is Wisdom, the outcome and essential attribute of Thought. Thus the Second Triad represents Thought, Wisdom, Intelligence. And of these the first term – Thought – is synthetic or containing; hence it is the transverse beam of the Triangle, Wisdom and Intelligence representing the analytic or composite principles. The Intellectual Trinity is the highest formulate; the primary Triad is abstract and purely essential – thus Being (Ain), Essence or Principle (Suph), Thought (Kether). Thus is conceived the Idea primary of the Subject – Absolute.
February 27  (Ash Wednesday). – The Kabalistic order and function of the Principles (Sephiroth) are formulated by the Zohar in the Adam-Kadmon. The Adam-Kadmon is the Pentacle, the five-rayed star. It is the eidolon of the prototypal Humanity. The right side of the Pentacle is Male; the left is Female – Jachin and Boaz. There is, then, in the centre of the Pentacle a Tree; which Tree is crossed-barred; one beam representing the Tree of Life, and the other beam the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The root of the Tree of Life is in Malkuth: its summit is in Ain-Suph. The transverse beam is the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, the centre-point of which is in Tiphareth (Aphrodite). This Tree is the Tree of Time and Order, and it divides the Pentacle into upper and lower. Malkuth (the Moon) is out of the Microprosopus altogether: hence she is isolated and is the ultimated opposite of the Ain-Suph. Reflects are upside down; hence Malkuth reflects the lower half of the Microprosopus as the upper, and the higher as the lower. Hence Leah (Hecate) is the upper half of the lunar sphere, and Rachel (Artemis) is the lower half thereof. Mundane order (which is lunar order) reverses the heavenly order. The Synthetic or Containing Principles among the Sephiroth, are indicated in successive logical order on the centre perpendicular of the Adam-Kadmon. They are from the Apex downward: Mind, the original personality (Kether); Heart, the original concept of Beauty (Tiphareth); Time, the synthesis of generation (Jesod); and Fate, the synthesis of Humanity and resultant of generation (Malkuth), proceeding from it. The last two are Chronos (Saturn), and Malkuth, the double-faced Artemis. In the Adam-Kadmon all the synthetic or containing principles are thus superposed on a single line, as Brain, Heart, Generative Organs, and their resultant or fruit – Actuality or Fate, dejected from the Microcosmos as Product. The Tree of Knowledge has its pivot in the Heart, or point of balance between Good and Evil, the point at which the Soul (Eva) emerges from Sense into the Gnosis. All below this line of knowledge is sensible and rudimentary. Aphrodite represents the boundary between the upper and the nether. The order of the Principles on the central perpendicular is alternately male and female, Mind, Heart, Generation, Product. The Principles on the right of the Pentacle are of Male function and correspond in character and dignity to the synthetic horizontal which resumes and categorises them. Thus, from the highest synthetic Principle, Mind, flows on the right side Wisdom, and on the left Intelligence. This is the highest or intellectual Triad. Its counterpart on the moral plane is the central Triad, whose synthesis is Heart (Beauty), whence proceed, on the right side,
Love, and on the left, Justice. But Love itself is but the extension of the highest Being (Ain), as Justice is the extension of the highest Essence (Suph). Love in perfect Justice may therefore be said to be God the Supreme. And thus it is to be observed that the Second or Moral Triad is a more direct procession from the highest and interior summit of Divinity than the primary or Intellectual Triad, because the direction of the Second Triad is identical with the Divine impulsion, but the direction of the Intellectual Triad crosses that of the Divine. The Third Triad has for its synthetic Principle, Generation or Time, spoken of in the Kabala as the “Leviathan of the Deep,” that is, the Devourer, or the Serpent. Its analytic and formulative Principles are, on the right side, Energy or Contest (Ares), and on the left side, Strength, Might, Endurance (Hera), sometimes Glory, the King’s daughter. Strength is but an extension of Intelligence, the female principle of the Intellectual Triad, and Energy is the extension of Wisdom. The affinity between the first and third Triad is, therefore, as complete as that between the second and unmanifest. Hence we learn that Goodness is the primary direction of Being, and that Intellect is the primary direction of dynamic or physical world. The Divine impulsion is that of Righteousness morally understood; the human impulsion is that of intellectual balance. The Woman Principle, or Heart (Maria, Aphrodite) is therefore more immediately Deific in intention than the Male Principle or Brain (Zeus, the Crown).
In the Dynamic or Third Triad, Netzach (Ares), is the basic principle of the struggle for life, of the Evolution-theory. But all the Principles, it must be borne in mind, are Archetypal Ideas; Malkuth alone – the product or seed of Generation – gives them a Double Actuality in Existence, for Fate is the Daughter of Time.
February 28 . – Religion, according to the Gnostics, must be founded, not on historical facts, but on ontological ideas: – the true meaning presented by Christianity under an historical veil. The motto of the Gnostics might be exactly given in the words of Fichte: “Men are saved, not by the historical, but by the metaphysical.” The meaning of the term Gnosis, as applied to a system of Philosophy, may be illustrated by the language of Plato towards the end of the fifth book of the Republic, in which he distinguishes between knowledge (γνŵσις) and opinion (δόξα) as being concerned respectively with the real (τò ŭν) and the apparent (τò Фαινόmενον). When to this distinction is added the further explanation that the objects of sense, the visible things of the world, belong to the class of phenomena and are objects of opinion, while the invisible essence of things, the One as distinguished from the Many, is the true reality, discerned not by Sense but by Intellect, we shall be justified in identifying Gnosis with that apprehension of things which penetrated beyond their sensible appearance to their essence and cause, and which differs in name only from that Wisdom (σοФία) which Aristotle tells us consists in a knowledge of First Causes or Principles.
Ain-Suph (τò ăπειρον, that which has no limits) is the highest of all possible abstractions, an incomprehensible unity, having no definite existence, but virtually comprehending within Itself all existence, all that is emanated from It and is contained in It, for as It is infinite, nothing can exist beyond It. At first there proceeded
forth (from Mind) a masculine or active potency designated Wisdom. This Sephirah sent forth an opposite, a feminine or passive potency, denominated Intelligence, and it is from the union of these two, who are called the Father and Mother, that the remaining Sephiroth proceeded (Ginsburg).
The Ophite Gnostics represented evil as emanating from Good as a transient phenomenon in the action of the mundane soul; and evil thus becomes a necessary moment in the rhythm of existence. The Fall is thus a stage in the process of man’s elevation to spiritual life. Hegel, in his Philosophie der Religion (Werke XI, p. 269), says: “The state of innocence in which there is for man no distinction between good and evil, is the state of the brute, the unconsciousness in which man knows nothing of good nor of evil, when that which he wills is not determined as the one or the other; for if he knows nothing of evil, he also knows nothing of good. (...) We find in the Bible a representation called in an abstract manner the Fall, a representation which in its great depth is not a mere accidental history, but the eternal necessary history of mankind represented in an external mythical manner.” Evil, according to Basilides, is no other than a phase in the world’s development. Valentinus, in explaining how Spiritual Being gives Existence to Matter, does not content himself, like Plato – whom in other respects he so closely follows – with assuming as the germ of the natural world an unformed matter existing from all eternity; this would be to assume two independent principles, the Deity and Matter existing in contrast to each other and therefore neither of them the One Absolute. Valentinus commences with one sole spiritual Being, and the material must in some way be evolved from It. He adopts an hypothesis which is virtually that of Pantheism; the material world has no real existence: it is but the shadow or reflection of the spiritual. “In proportion as consciousness becomes definite and limited, and therefore unable to comprehend the Absolute in its fullness, in the same proportion it becomes conscious of an inability, a limitation, a something hindering complete knowledge. As spiritual knowledge becomes fainter and less complete, this indefinite negation of knowledge becomes stronger and more intense, till at last the substance and the shadow change places, and the mere limits to the consciousness of the spiritual assumes a definite existence as the material. (...) All finite existence, first spiritual and then material, though seeming to have separate and substantial Being, is but a mode of the Absolute, becoming gradually more definite and concrete as it becomes more limited and further removed from the primitive Absolute. Real existence is the relation of subject to object, the objective existence becoming more unreal as the development increases definitely, and finally culminating in the grossness of an apparent matter, opposed to thought in nature as well as in relation. The relation of the Ego to objective existence is therefore a seeming relation of subject to object, and is unreal.”
(From Dean Mansel’s Gnostic Heresies.)
[Buddha said] “And whosoever, either now or after I am dead, shall be a lamp unto themselves and a refuge unto themselves, and shall betake themselves to no external refuge, but holding fast to the Truth as their lamp, and to the Truth as their refuge, shall look
not for refuge to anyone besides themselves, and shall betake themselves to no external refuge – even they among my disciples shall reach the very topmost height. But they must be anxious to learn.” (1)
March 20 . – There are Seven Planetary States – not
planets, as certain Theosophists so-called vainly imagine – through which the
Ego must pass. This truth is typified by the Seven Circuits of the river
succession of circles in the Evolution of the
These seven worlds compose the Lower Triangle of the sacred hexagram. When a man
begins the life of Thought, he goes all round the seven stations again, and ends
at the state of Christhood. Every man must attain this state
before he can enter the Heavens. The man who realises it actively is a Jesus. It is
necessary in one’s own heart to be willing and able to be a Jesus; but to carry
the will into actual deeds is to attain to the third and highest circle, ending
in transmutation. There are many subordinate rounds in the chain. You may number
them until seventy times seven if you will. Or if you find it clearer, instead
of arranging your seven planetary stations as a triangle, which, of course, is
only arbitrary, you may arrange them as a succession of islands with a stream –
July 19 . – To the question, “Have we been elementals?” we should reply, “We are elementals in our Jiv-atma or life-soul.” For the worlds represent Seven Principles; and these principles, all of them potential in the first or Etheric world, are evolved in order. So there was a time when we were only two, then three, then four, then five, then six, and we shall be seven (fold). All the seven are in the One, but they are displayed in order. Therefore we have in us actually, and the world has in it actually, the Jiv-atmic Forces. It would be equally a mistake to say, “We have been animals or plants.” For we are animals and plants now, in certain parts of our nature, as we are also mineral and gas in certain parts. But there was a time when we stopped at gas, when we stopped at mineral, or plant, or animal. The “We” that went through all these phases is the Selfhood, and in Nature the Mundane Soul. Two principles descend into Nature – Dionysos, or Spirit, and Persephone, or Soul. Persephone is Malkuth (or the daughter of Malkuth); Dionysos is Binah (Bi-mater). Now, as the three, Father, Word, and Holy Spirit, flow through the Upper Triangle, manifesting the Ensoph; so in the Lower Triangle, three flow through the worlds, – the Spirit, Dionysos, resuming the Trinity; Water, or Substance, the Soul – Malkuth; and the Bloods, or Elemental Powers, the Nephesh dwelling in the bloods, as distinguished from the Ruach and the Neshamah. Dionysos is Jekedah, the Spiritual Word, or Logos, of the Man, called also Chokmah (Wisdom), Nous. Persephone is Neshamah, the Soul; Ruach is Athena, but Athena under the aspect, not of the mere anima bruta, but of Intellect. Athena is represented as the guardian and patron of horses, and hence is called Hippia. Horses signify the Intellect. She is also a warlike Goddess, demolishing chimeras and vindicating Zeus (the Reason) in all disputes. She takes an active part in the war with the Titans, entombs Enceladus (in Etna), and slays Pallas, the winged giant; hence her name Pallas-Athena, by which this achievement is immortalised. Thus the Intellect is the antagonist of mere rudimentary forces. He who sides with the Titans is against Athena, i.e. is deprived of Intellect or Reason. As Hermes slays Argus, the astral power, so Athena slays Pallas; that is, the mind developing over-comes the blind instincts of the merely animal man. Athena, Poseidon, Hephaistos, and Demeter are said to be elemental Deities,
but they are not thereby classified with the
Titanic elementals. The Air, Water, Fire, and Earth personified by the Gods are
the archetypal and celestial elements, not the mundane. As Air is the breath of
Jiv-atmic forces, so Intellect is the breath of the
Soul. In the world at large she is the pure reason of things, controlling the
working of the Titans. She has in charge the heart of
Dionysos. So then Spirit, Mind, and Life-force flow through the worlds
together. Persephone is the mundane consciousness flowing from
Malkuth, the Tenth Source of the Ocean. She is not, therefore, the Sixth
Principle, for she contains this and all others, developing each principle in
turn according to its order. Persephone is the Collectivity
of the Principles, and therefore she is called the World-Soul, as including all
these. The Water that bears her along is that of Existence,
(172:1) For plans of the Tabernacle and of the Great Pyramid respectively, see The Perfect Way (Fourth Edition), pp. 246 and 334.