Certain old initiations were often described as a search for the ancestors; and between the seeker and his ancestors were the waters of the womb out of which he had been born.
Initiation awakened the ancestral memory (latent in all people) by teaching the neophyte to extend his ordinary memory beyond the moment of his own birth; and there came to him dim pictures of earthly history – even the visions of the great geological catastrophes or the deluge.
But in this spiritual consciousness all this was experienced not merely as ‘history’ but as the search for the birth of the soul out of the Divine; and so led to a realisation of immortality. Such experiences have been recorded in legendary form and in many ancient mythologies.
Eleanor C. Merry, The Flaming Door