Mar 202011
 

I had always been fascinated by ancient Egypt, and in these realms of fancy there is no extra charge for anything, it amused me to think that in a past incarnation I had been an Egyptian.

That left rather a long gap between now and then, during which I slept with the worms, a boring occupation, so I decided that I had also been an alchemist who, needless to say, discovered the Philosopher’s Stone.

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I also read about Moses being trained in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and Daniel in the wisdom of the Babylonians. We hear a lot about Daniel in the lion’s den, but we hear nothing at all about Daniel in his official capacity as Belteshazzar, head magician to the king of Babylon and satrap of Chaldea.

Another thing that interested me was that curious business of the battle of the kings in the valley, four against five – Amraphel, king of Shinar; Arioch, king of Ellasar; Chedlorlaomer, king of Elam, and Tidal, king of nations. I knew nothing whatever about them, but their names were magnificent and sang in my head.

Then there was the even odder incident of Melchisedek, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who went out to meet Abraham, bearing bread and wine after the fight was over and the kings were all sunk in the slime-pits. Who was this priest of a forgotten worship whom Abraham honoured?

I admit candidly that there is a great deal about the Old Testament worthies that I do not find admirable, but I found these fascinating. So I added a Chaldean incarnation in the days of Abraham to my collection.

Then my efforts met with a setback. I saw a lecture on reincarnation advertised at the local lodge of the Theosophical Society, so I went to hear it, and it sounded good to me. But i the question-time at the end a lady got up and said that she was the reincarnation of Hypatia, and the chairman got up and said she couldn’t be, as that was Mrs Besant; then the lady started to argue, and they played a tune on the piano to drown her voice, and I went home with my tail between my legs.

I was a bit shy of reincarnation fantasies for some time after that, and took up my old interest of communing with the Moon..

Dion Fortune, The Sea Priestess

Aug 072010
 

The spiritual revelation recorded in the seventh chapter of the Book of Daniel affords us what we need for our task. In that chapter, the karma of evil is boldly outlined. The delineation begins with the picture of “the four winds of heaven [that] strove upon the great sea” (Daniel 7:2).

This figure shows us the cosmic scene of the conflict between good and evil. Space – with its four cardinal points of north, south, east, west – is neither one of the three abstract categories of Kantian philosophy, nor is it merely the distance that must be covered to reach some particular point; it is an ocean of forces at rest, set in motion by four active forces. These four active forces are the spiritual influences within the elemental world – the “winds” that cover the elemental world.

The currents caused by the four “winds” in the elemental world give rise to the four elements, which are impregnated by the four realms of elemental beings (salamanders, sylphs, undines and gnomes). These four groups of elemental beings are simply the lowest expression of the “four winds”. Their origin is rooted in the eternal Trinity, from which issue the cosmic impulses called ‘north’, ‘south’, ‘east’ and ‘west’. The Father being works through the cosmic impulses of north and south’ the Son and the Holy Spirit are active in the impulses of east and west.

When these impulses work together, cosmic good results; when the “four winds” work against one another, the result is cosmic evil. This is why the description of Daniel’s night vision begins with this image: “The four winds of the heaven strove.” These winds striving against one another are the four currents of cosmic evil. They are not controlled from Heaven, but from the depths of the ‘sea’; their origin must be sought in the “four….beasts” that appear out of the depth of the sea:”And  four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse from one another” (Daniel 7:3).

Christ and Sophia, Valentin Tomberg