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The following Letter on the Trinity, the original MS. of which is in my possession, was written by Edward Maitland for publication in the A.J. [Agnostic Journal]. Whether it was published or not, I have not been able to ascertain. S.H.H.


11th October, 1891.


            I AM no stickler for the integrity of the text of the Bible as we have it; but I think I can show cause not merely for an arrest, but for a reversal of the judgment which ascribes forgery or chicanery, whether to its writers or its copiers, on the strength of the alleged interpolation in l John, v. 7, of the words: “there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” For the explanation that commends itself to me is that it is in reality a restoration made by some copyist who, either from having had access to some earlier MS. not now extant, or from his knowledge of the ancient mysteries to which the doctrine of the Trinity belonged, or by reason of his own perception of the necessary truth of that doctrine and consequent recognition of the passage as it stood as incomplete without it, accordingly made insertion of it, either in the text or in the margin, of his own MS., from which last, if made there, it was, by some subsequent copyist, transferred to the text, all in perfect good faith.

            But be this as it may, not only does its presence there make no addition to the doctrine of the Bible, but the tenet itself needs no adventitious support of authority to entitle it to acceptance. For, while it underlies and pervades the Bible from beginning to end, whether explicitly or implicitly, it is founded so

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indefeasibly in the very nature of Being, both unmanifest and manifest, original and derived, as to constitute a truth at once necessary and self-evident, for all who, being thinkers in any worthy sense of the term, have made the nature of Being the subject of their thought.

            For, as explained in The Bible’s Own Account of Itself, it is impossible to conceive of any entity which is not a duality and a trinity as well as a unity. Since, be it what it may, it must – to be at all – consist of the three elements, Force, Substance, and the resultant Expression or Phenomenon of these. And only by such evolution of their Trinity can the Force and Substance of any entity find recognition, since they cannot themselves become manifest. These, then, are the “three persons” in every being which together make one being. For while the Force in any entity is being, the Substance is being, and the Phenomenon is being: they are not three beings, but one being. And they all are co-equal and co-eternal, and none is before or after the other. And inasmuch as the two first, Force and Substance, are respectively of masculine and feminine potency, they are as He and She to each other, and are Father and Mother in respect of the being concerned; while their immediate resultant, product, expression or “Word” is the child or “Son.”

            It is true that this is not the ecclesiastical Trinity, but the two presentations differ only by reason of their referring to different stages of thought. By blending what are really inseparable, the “Father” and “Mother,” or Force and Substance, into one, and calling this the “Father,” the ecclesiastical presentation makes the Father-Mother the first person; their product, expression and manifestation, the “Son,” the second person; and takes into the Godhead as third person the divine Force and Substance which proceed, necessarily, through the Son, calling the person thus constituted and derived the “Holy Ghost,” or Spirit; this last implying Deity dynamic or active, as distinguished from Deity static, or passive. So that the three names, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, are simply terms which denote respectively, the first, Original Being at rest; the last, Original Being in operation;

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and the second and middle, Original Being in transition from the former to the latter state. Or, expressed in terms of logic, the first person is the Subject; the third person is the Object; and the second person is the Eject, which – generated of the Subject (the Father-Mother) – is the middle term between this and the Object, or third term, namely, the Holy Ghost, who is, at first potentially, then actually, the manifested universe. For of them all things consist, in them all things live and move and have their being; and “of His fullness have we all received,” Holy Ghost being the term whereby Scripture designates Original Force and Substance – Father and Mother – under manifestation, differentiation and individuation in Creation. And that the Original Force and Substance of Being are designated by terms implying Personality is because, in consisting of essential Consciousness, which is the condition of personality, and possessing Will and Intelligence, which are also conditions of personality, Deity is necessarily, in such sense, a Person. There is, also, necessarily, but one Original Being, and one law, will, or mind by which that Being works and operates, how many and various soever the planes of His manifestation. From which it follows that there is, between such planes, a correspondence in virtue of which whatever subsists on the one, subsists also, in some mode, on the others. And whereas the “heavenly,” or invisible, is the original, and therefore the highest, this constitutes the “Pattern in the Mount” from and after which all the others are derived and fashioned, and which, itself, though invisible, may be “clearly seen and understood by the things which are made,” as, says Paul, following and reinforcing the Kabala. And it is precisely because “there are three that bear record in heaven,” or the invisible and original, “and these three are one,” that “there are three that bear witness in earth,” or the visible and derived, “and these three agree in one.” And this law holds good, not in respect only of human and other animated beings, but for every entity whatsoever. For everything is a trinity in unity, in that it consists, in some mode, of Father, Mother, and Child, or Father-Mother,

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Child and Effect, according to the method of formulation adopted.

            The terms, “Spirit,” “Water,” and “Blood,” as used in the passage concerned, similarly denote the constituent principles of the Christ considered as the regenerated selfhood. They are respectively, his Energy or Life, which is his Father; his Substance or Soul, which is his Mother; and their joint product, offspring, expression, Word or Son, which is Himself. Not, be it noted, his physical and phenomenal, but his spiritual and substantial self, who is necessarily con-substantial with his Father-Mother, the esoteric Christ, or “Christ within,” the revelation and exposition of whom was the special function of Paul. It is the “heavenly man,” or “man from heaven,” by the generation of whom in the earthly man, to be his new and Divine Self, he is redeemed, perfected, sanctified, and finally glorified, the whole process being accomplished by means of that inward purification and at-one-ment which constitute the secret and method of Christ.

            The effect of the mistake made by the Churches in this regard has been to turn the profoundest of theosophies into the grossest of idolatries. The Christ proper is no unique, unthinkable personage of hybrid birth and disorderly generation. He is the fulfilment, not the subversion, of the divine-natural order, the realisation of the divine potentialities common to all men. For, every man’s Spirit becoming pure, becomes Holy Ghost. Every man’s Soul becoming pure, becomes Virgin Mary. And every man himself, by steadfastly following his highest ideal and seeking ever to be and to do the best he can discern, is in due time “re-born” – that is, reconstituted – of these parents, and becomes “Christ-Jesus,” a son at once of God and Man, and a personal demonstration of the truth that “there are three that bear record in heaven” of the microcosm, no less than of the macrocosm, and that “these three are one.” For the heaven now in question is the “kingdom within” of his own perfected nature, and he himself is the One, at once, “the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost,” and the Spirit, the Water and the Blood, for all these are mystical terms to denote

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the constituents of the regenerated selfhood, the “Son of Man,” who is by virtue of his nature always “in heaven,” even though he be also incarnate on earth.

            True, the process of such regeneration is a long one, but not in comparison with the greatness and duration of the destiny for which it is a prelude and preparation. And the Christian Theosophy, now happily recovered (1) from the oblivion to which for ages it has been condemned, accords to man – no less than does its fellow system of the East – ample space and opportunity for its accomplishment. For it endows him with an ego capable of persisting through all changes of form and state – thereby supplementing and complementing the doctrine of evolution, from unscientific making it scientific – and it assigns to him as many returns to the nursery and school of the body as may be necessary for his soul’s growth and education, till he attain his spiritual majority, and is fitted for higher destinies. And to this new individuality, thus divinely engendered, and perfected through experience, it accords perpetuity of being. For though he be in the condition of God, and is God, the individual is not merged and lost in the universal, but remains ever an individuation of the universal. For, while all become one as to Spirit, the One becomes many as to Souls, each of whom is a vehicle for God. And together they constitute that Church Invisible, which is the mystical body of Christ. For God, under individuation, is “Christ.”

            Such, according to that “divine science,” chief of the treasures of which Israel, fleeing, “spoiled the Egyptians,” that Gnosis whose key the doctors of the temple have in all ages taken away, neither using it themselves nor suffering others to use it, – such, to use the expression of Egypt’s great hierophant, Hermes Trismegistus, is “the most perfect glory of the soul.”

            Thus much in refutation of the charge of forgery and chicanery brought against the Bible on the score of the alleged interpolation. Yet hasty and unfounded as that charge is, it is not more so than the other charges which abound in the agnostic writings of the day, one

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and all of which come of following the lead of orthodoxists in rejecting the Bible’s own account of itself, and interpreting it from a standpoint other than that from which it claims to be written, and by rules other than those which itself prescribes. For judged from its own declared standpoint and by its own declared canons of interpretation, so far as the organon of understanding employed is adequate to the task, the Bible discloses itself indisputably as, first and foremost, if not exclusively, an exposition of Principles eternal and inherent in the nature of Being, and of their formulation, manifestation, and individuation as the object of existence and the function of evolution.





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The followings is an Extract from a Letter, entitled “The Church and the Bible,” written by Edward Maitland, and published in the A.J. [Agnostic Journal] of the 29th December, 1894, and the 5th January, 1895. S.H.H


            NO one can read the Bible with a particle of intelligence without perceiving that it is from beginning to end a denunciation both of the order to which the accepted orthodoxy is due, and of that orthodoxy itself. This is the order of the priests. For it represents that order as in perpetual conflict with the order which it exalts as the ministers of God and the recipients and interpreters of divine revelation – the order, namely, of the prophets. It ascribes the fall of the Church from its Edenic and pure state to the priesthood acting under infernal instigation, charging them with corrupting the faculty whereby man has the knowledge of divine things – namely, the intuition – which, as the feminine mode of the mind, it calls the “woman,” and with falsifying the truth by preferring the letter to the spirit, the form to the substance, the material symbol to the spiritual verity denoted by it – which practice it calls idolatry and the worship of false gods; and with setting up as the object of worship the blood-loving demon of the pit, and shedding in his honour innocent blood on the pure altars of the Lord. And it goes on to show that whenever the prophets arose to denounce the corruptions of the priests, and lead the people back to the pure and simple doctrine of the Church Unfallen, they were persecuted and slain by the priests, whose order was therefore denounced by the greatest of the prophets as the “Jerusalem that kills the prophets,” and who was himself slain by them. For there is no greater

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mistake than to suppose that the slayers of Jesus were the Jews. It is true they were Jews who gave him over to death, but it was not as Jews, but as priests, that they did so. The Jews, on the contrary, produced him and furnished him with his disciples and apostles, and would have taken him by Force to make him their king, so greatly captivated were they by his simple doctrine of redemption by love and purity. But the priests killed him, as they had killed the prophets, his brethren, before him, and have ever since been killing him in the person of his doctrine, as declared in the Bible they would do until the end of that “evil and adulterous,” because materialistic and idolatrous, “generation,” which had been in possession ever since the Fall, and would be in possession until the redemption to be effected by his second and spiritual advent.

            For, in calling itself Christian, sacerdotalism underwent no radical change. It but reconstituted its system around the name, on finding it a name to conjure with, preserving all its own worst and characteristic features. For it inherited its mysteries and Scriptures without the key to them, and to this day knows neither their source nor their signification. They, indeed, had come from above, and were divine; but the interpretation and application of them came from below, and were infernal. Hence, the Force of the utterance of Jesus to the order which had thus perverted them, and would pervert them to the end, “Ye are of your father, the devil,” and a “generation of vipers,” in token of their being of the brood of the serpent-tempter of Eden; and such was the nonsense, and worse than nonsense, that they made of doctrines which in their spiritual and intended sense were absolutely reasonable and inexpugnable, that they suppressed the understanding as the criterion of truth, and the moral conscience as the criterion of right, in favour of authority, and this their own, falsifying to this end the meaning of the term “mystery.” For while, in its proper sense, mystery means only that which, by reason of its belonging to a region of the consciousness transcending the sense-nature, requires for its apprehension the application of the mind to that superior region, in its

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sacerdotal sense mystery meant that which transcends and even contradicts reason altogether, and yet must be believed on pain of hell-fire. And it was mystery as thus defined that in the book of Revelation, which is a forecast made by Jesus himself of the Church’s future history, is denounced as “Mystery, Babylon the great, the Mother of harlots and abominations of the earth.” For, in such sense, mystery involves the suppression of the understanding, and the Bible throughout insists on the understanding, making this the means and condition of salvation; since only when man understands the nature of existence can he obtain the knowledge and power to overcome the limitations of matter, and realise the divine potentialities belonging to him in virtue of the divinity of the constituent principles of existence, its force, and its substance, which potentialities it was the object of Jesus to demonstrate to men, he having realised them in himself.

            It was in further defiance of the teaching of Christ that sacerdotalism suppressed the doctrine of regeneration in favour of substitution, and made salvation due to something done or suffered by someone from without, instead of to a change of interior condition. To which end it suppressed also its companion doctrine, without which regeneration is impossible – that of the multiplicity of earth-lives, now called reincarnation, which doctrine was universal in the pre-Christian Churches, and is implicit, and occasionally explicit, in the Bible. But regeneration makes every man his own priest, to work out his own salvation; and, therefore, it would not suit a sacerdotal order bent on making the world its own abject slaves; and substitution, by involving sacrifice, makes the priest necessary. Hence the orthodox doctrine of “vicarious-atonement.”

            Then, again, so far from being really Christian, the orthodoxy so-called is directly and palpably anti-Christian, according to the definition of that term given by John in his first Epistle. For in excluding, as it does, the feminine principle of Substance from its place in the Trinity of the Godhead, and making that Trinity masculine only, it “denies the Father and the Son” by denying the Mother, without whom is neither Fatherhood

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nor Sonship. Doing which it renders that eternal generation whereby are both creation and redemption, the latter of which is by regeneration, and deprives man of the Divine potentialities belonging to him in virtue of the divinity of the substance of existence. The Bible, on the contrary, attaches such importance to the doctrine of the divinity of the substance of existence that in its opening sentences it twice affirms the fact, declaring that “in the beginning, God,” the Unity, “created,” or put forth from himself, the Duality, “the heavens,” spirit and deep or force and substance, and their ultimate phenomenal resultant generated of them, “the earth,” or matter. “And the Spirit,” or Force, of God “moved upon the face of the waters,” or Substance, of God; “and God said” – that is, found expression – “and there was light,” or manifestation of God.

            The same process is represented as repeated in the individual when God finds manifestation in man. For the nativity of the Christ in man corresponds to that of the universe, the Spirit or Force of God being called “Holy Ghost,” and the Soul or Substance of God being called “Virgin Maria,” of whom are generated within man the spiritual and substantial selfhood called “Christ.” Wherefore, the true trinity of the Bible and Christianity, and of reason, consists of “the Spirit, the Water, and the Word,” as respectively, Father, Mother, and Child – Force, Substance, and Phenomenon, according to the plane of activity. And all things are made of the Divine Substance. For there is no other, seeing that God is the only reality. Nevertheless, so enamoured is the orthodoxy called Christian, and claiming to rest on the Bible, of the notion that the universe is made out of nothing, and has no inherent divinity, that it has gone out of its way to introduce into its marriage service the lying sentence, “O God, who didst create – or, as in the Anglican, hast made – all things out of nothing;” thus completely ignoring the Divine Substance, which the Bible makes the substance of all things, calling it the “Water,” or “Maria.”

            This persistent denial by sacerdotalism to man of

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his divine potentialities, and the terrible consequences to him of his ignorance of the fact, made the time of the end of a system so pernicious a subject of the most eager anticipation by the prophets. There was, as they knew, but one way in which that event could be accomplished, namely, through the revolt of the human mind against sacerdotal control, which would come of man’s recovery of his faculty of understanding in respect of divine things. But so mighty was the glamour of “the devil and his angels” – the corrupt priesthoods of religion and science – that it was not until after the lapse of long ages that such event could come about. The times and seasons of the human soul, like those of the vegetable world, are subject to various influences, and only when all the conditions are favourable do the budding and blossoming and fruiting take place. There is a world wherein the periods of such cycles are known, as the gardener knows those of his plants; and that world is the world celestial, whose denizens are men who, having accomplished their warfare with matter, and become wholly spiritual and substantial, have realised the divine potentialities which are the birthright of every man. And in such measure as men have done this while in the body and on earth, that world celestial is accessible by them, and its knowledges are at their service. They to whom those knowledges are imparted for the world’s benefit are prophets. And the faculty in virtue of which they are prophets is the mystic “woman” of Holy Writ, the intuition. And it is because intuition is itself the product of experience, being inborn experience, that which the soul knows of old and of former lives, that they are able to recognise the truth of the knowledges thus imparted to them. It may, moreover, even be that they already know so much that it needs but the illuminating ray of the spirit to lighten up the chambers of their souls to enable them to behold that which is there treasured up.

            Scripture makes no secret of the time of the end of the system it so bitterly denounces, or of the manner thereof. Said Jesus: “When ye shall see ... then is the end near.” And that it implied a restoration of

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faculty was further declared by him in the prophecy of the budding anew of the fig-tree. For the fig has been from time immemorial the mystic symbol of the inward understanding; and therefore it was the condemnation of the fallen Church for the loss of this faculty that was implied in the parable of the cursing of the barren fig-tree, and it was the end of that dark period in the Church which was implied in the prophecy of its budding anew. The precise period had already been intimated by Daniel, as also in other parts of the Bible. And there are yet other prophecies, products of the intervening ages, based on various cycles – some spiritual, some astronomical – pointing to the same epoch. And that epoch is our own; the moment being that wherein the fall had culminated to its lowest depth by the utter loss of the spiritual consciousness through the suppression by science of the “woman” Intuition, and the acquiescence therein by the Church. This was the moment waited for. The Sun of the Soul had declined to its lowest point, and its re-birth was imminent if man were not to perish utterly. And accordingly she has now been exalted, clothed with the sun, and carried to the throne of God; and her sons are making war with the dragon and getting the victory over him. God’s two witnesses in man – the intellect and the intuition combined in a pure spirit, the condition on which the Shiloh, his deliverer, comes to him – have risen from the dead, and ascended into the heaven of their proper supremacy. The angel flying in mid-heaven has proclaimed his eternal gospel to the world, restoring the perfect doctrine and rule of life of the Church Unfallen, making a perfect Eirenicon at once between the Churches and between religion and science, by restoring the understanding as the criterion of truth and basis of faith, to the utter deposition of authority, and therein of mystery, as sacerdotally defined. And superstition, religious and scientific, is already flying before its light, like Python, the mighty serpent of darkness, before the rays of Phoibos, to make its dwelling in the caverns and secret places of earth. For Materialism is utterly played out in both its strongholds – the sacerdotal

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and the scientific – by the restoration of the long-lost key of knowledge, and the consequent solution of all problems in favour of spirit as the source and substance of existence. And on all sides – from the cultured and percipient, cleric and lay, irrespective of Church, creed, and race, whom the glad tidings have reached – arises the cry of joy and thankfulness: “At last! At last! Our mysteries are solved for us, and we have a scientific statement of them, so potent of logic and so luminous of exposition, that not even that wicked one himself, the son of perdition and mystery of iniquity, who so long has sat in the temple of God, accepted of the priests as if he were God, can withstand it. The balance is restored, the loss of which caused the fall, and with it the divine Gnosis itself, the doctrine of the Church Unfallen. And man is once more whole, sound and sane, and able to perfect the system of his thought, as well, also, as himself. No longer, then, shall the promise of the establishment of God’s kingdom on earth as it is in heaven be a meaningless sound in men’s ears; but ‘mercy and truth’ – religion and science – are met together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.”

            Such is the era on which the world has now actually entered, through the fulfilment of the prophecies, in their every particular – time, place, manner, and conditions – which announced a New Gospel of Interpretation to take place at this epoch in supplement and complement of the former Gospel of Manifestation, to the recognition of the whole humanity of the man and of the, woman conjoined and equilibrated. For, as manifestation is of the man, so is interpretation of the woman, neither of whom is without the other in the perfect humanity, on any plane of man’s nature, physical, mental, moral, or spiritual. It is by the light of that interpretation that I have been enabled to make those corrections of the doctrine of the fallen Church which have appeared in these pages, and to demonstrate the utter fallacy of the Materialistic philosophy by convicting its adherents of working with a faculty mutilate and unsound, the “man” (intellect) without the “woman” (intuition) – a divorce as fatal to man’s

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mental system as would be a divorce between the modes centrifugal and centripetal of force to the solar system, or between the modes masculine and feminine of sex to the reproductive system.


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            Among the fallacies to be discarded is the fallacy which consists in believing that the Church, so vehemently denounced in its own sacred books for its manifold, grievous, and fatal perversions of the truth contained in those books, and so ignorant as to be unaware either of the source or of the meaning of its own dogmas, must understand its doctrines better than I understand them, whose high privilege it is to have been one of the two recipients of the New Gospel of Interpretation, which has been vouchsafed expressly to correct those perversions, and who not only have that gospel by heart, but who know absolutely by my own soul’s experience – as also did my colleague – the truth of every word of it. For the method of the revelation in question was the simple one of reincarnating two souls which, in virtue of their previous earth-lives, were possessed of all the requisite knowledges, and enabling them, under divine illumination, to recover the recollections of those knowledges, to the positive demonstration of the pre-existence and immortality of the soul, as proved by its power thus to recover its memories of the far past, and of the truth of the definition of intuition as “inborn experience, that which the soul knoweth of old and of former years,” and of illumination as “the light of Wisdom, whereby a man perceiveth heavenly secrets, which light is the spirit of God within the man shewing unto him the things of God.”


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(74:1) See note p. 56.








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