Τρίτη, 1 Μαρτίου 2011

How shall we know Christ at His Coming by Max Heindel 1914


 How shall we know Christ at His Coming by Max Heindel 1914

Shorthand Report of a lecture delivered before the Los Angeles Study Center Rx. F.,May 18th,1913

Some chapters :

To systematize our discourse, we will divide it into four parts,each devoted to consideration of a question which has a definite hearing upon our subject:

1. Who is  Christ?
2. Why did He come in the first place?
3. Why must He come Again?
4. How shall we know Him at His Appearing?
This will make it easier for those who have not studied the Western Wisdom Teaching to grasp the idea.

WHO IS CHRIST?

The first point which we must settle is the identity of Christ as taught in the Western Mystery School.According to the chart,"The Seven Days of Creation,'Man has gone through a period of involution comprising the Saturn, Sun and Moon Periods;also one-half of the Earth Period; in this pilgrimage through matter he has gathered the vehicles he today possesses.
During the Saturn Period, when we were mineral-like,some beings were human as we are today,but they were of a different wave of evolution.
They have since advanced, and have become the Lords of Mind.The highest initiate of that evolution of the lifewave that was then in the human stage is called in esotericism,the Father.The highest initiate of the Sun Period,when those beings which are now Arch Angels were human,is called the Son,otherwise the Christ.The present day Angels were human in the Moon Period, and the highest initiate whom we now call Jehovah is also called the Holy Spirit.
There we have the status of the three great beings most active as leaders of evolution.The humanity of the Sun Period could not descend any further into the sea of matter than the Desire World (see the chart),therefore their lowest vehicle was the desire body,and as it is a cosmic law that no being can create a vehicle which it has not learned to build during its evolution,any more than a carpenter can make shoes,it was impossible for the Christ Spirit to be born into a physical body;He could not form such a vehicle.Neither could He form the vital body,made of ether.
He also lacked the ability to function in the latter substance, because He had never learned it in His evolution.To supply the needed vehicles for Christ, Jesus, a man of our evolution  a man born of a father and a mother both high initiates, who made the creative act a sacrifice and performed the immaculate conception without passion,gave up his dense and vital bodies at the Baptism to the Sun Spirit Christ,Who then entered  the  material  world and became Mediator, having all the vehicles necessary to function between God and man.Christ-Jesus is therefore absolutely unique,and the Bible tells us that there is no other name whereby we must be saved,but by the name of Christ Jesus;that is the only authoritative Christian creed.Having explained the identity of Christ and Jesus as stated in the Western Wisdom Teaching,our next problem is :

WHY DID CHRIST COME HERE IN THE FIRST PLACE?

On Golgotha, the physical body of the Christ was destroyed amid certain phenomena recorded in the Bible,and the Christ Spirit drew into the earth.Up to that time the earth had been worked upon from without.As the group spirits guide animals from without,so the earth had been guided in its orbit, and mankind had been led on the path of  evolution entirely by Jehovah,but from that time the Christ became our indwelling Earth-Spirit.
He now guides our planet in its orbit,and is endeavoring to replace the regime of war inaugurated by Jehovah,on the one hand,and the Martial Lucifer Spirits,on the other,by a regime of altruism,a reign of Universal Friendship.We hear much about Universal Brotherhood; but it is not necessary to form societies to proclaim that we are brothers; everyone knows that,there is no need of calling attention to that fact.
Brothers and sisters are not always harmonious,however,they must be harmonious if they are to be friends, and therefore Christ instituted a much higher ideal when He called His disciples friends;"If ye love one another,if ye keep my commandments,then ye are my friends.''

WHY MUST HE COME AGAIN?

While we have the emphatic promise of Christ's return,there are many Christians who do not believe in the Second Advent,so it may be well to see if there is any reason compelling his return.
To elucidate this point,let us take an illuminative incident from "Faust." Though written by Goethe,this opera was not a figment of his fancy,the legend of Faust is older than history;it is one of the myths which express in
fanciful, pictorial terms the story of the soul's search after light.
These tales were given to infant humanity that they might subconsciously imbibe the ideals which in later epochs they are to live. And,as a matter of fact,we use the same methods of instruction when we give our children picture books to inculcate ideas they are too young to grasp intellectually.
Faust has studied "Books" all his life and gradually realizes that we know only what we live, that apart from
practical application in daily life, book learning is of no value. When the soul awakes to this fact, it stands at
the portal of true knowledge, looking towards the LIGHT.
 But the road forks,one path is smooth and easy,all along the way are guides,servile and smiling,ready to encourage the traveler and assist him in any way he desires,and at the end stands Lucifer, the Light bringer, ready to give worldly honors to them that worship at his shrine.The other path is rough, rugged and dangerous;sometimes it is very dark; many a weak and bleeding heart is upon it, and full often one may hear the cry of anguish:"How long, Oh Lord! How long?" But though the soul struggles seemingly alone,it hears always a voice within, still, small and soundless, yet unmistakably clear: "Come ye that are weak and heavy laden,and I will give you rest," and occasionally "The True Light," Christ, the goal of the souls search,is seen through a rift in the storm clouds which must be passed to reach the summit of the path,and from the beatific vision the seeking soul gathers new strength.
On the black path Lucifer panders to every appetite without restraint or reservation.While the soul drifts with the tide,all seems easy, and pleasure seems to wait at every turn, but when at length it has come to the end of the river of life, instead of soaring aloft to its  proper goal,it is drawn down by the base appetites which cling to it as the flesh of an unripe fruit clings to the kernel,and it experiences with thousandfold intensity the pain incidental to tearing itself away from the fetters welded by sin.
Thomas a Kempis remarks upon the desire of the majority to live a long life,and how few are concerned to live a good life.I might paraphrase him by exclaiming,"Oh! how many are desirous of attaining spiritual powers,but how few strive to cultivate spirituality.The story of Faust gives us an insight into what may happen when we exclaim with all the intensity of our whole being:

Oh ! are there spirits in the air,
Who oat  'twixt  heaven  and  earth  dominion wielding?
Come down from yonder golden atmosphere,
Take me to scenes new life and fuller yielding.
A magic mantle did I but possess,
To waft me thither as on viewless wings,
I' prize it more than any earthly dress,
Nor change it for the royal robe of kings.

By this impatience and desire to get something for nothing,to reap where he has not sown,he attracts to himself a spirit of an undesirable nature,for the inhabitants of the invisible worlds are in nowise different from people here.A philanthropist is not found on every bush in this world,neither do we meet angels on every hand the moment we step across the border,and the only safeguard is to strive to be worthy of consciously entering those realms.
When we have attained the requisite character we shall not have to wait.We need not here concern ourselves with what bargain was proposed to Faust by Lucifer, who had followed his prospective victim into the latters study, but when he turns toward the door and is about to leave he sees with dismay a five pointed star with two points turned towards the door,and one point facing him.This he asks Faust to remove, and upon being closely questioned and invited to leave by the window or chimney,he at last confesses :
For ghostly spirits 'tis a law,Where they came in they must withdraw.This is a most important point,for,as Lucifer entered the study of Faust by the door and is forced to leave by the same way,so, as Christ entered the earth by way of the  vital body of Jesus, must He leave by that same way upon His return from the redeemed earth to the sun, His heavenly Home;NO other vehicle i 'ill do.
But there is much more in that situation between Faust and Lucifer of interest in this connection.
The door is open,so why should the five pointed star bar the exit of Lucifer,specially as he-had passed over it on entering the study?
The five pointed star is the emblem of man with limbs apart and arms outstretched,one point is then at the to pre-presenting the head which is the natural gate of the spirit.There it enters  its  future body about eighteen
days after the conception,thence it leaves when the body sleeps,it reenters by that same gate in the morning,
and for the Invisible Helpers this is also the exit and entrance.Finally,when death comes the spirit withdraws by way of the head.
For that reason the five pointed star with one point up as represented in the emblem of the Rosicrucian Fellowship is the symbol of white Magic which works by natural means in harmony with the law of evolution.
The pupil of a Mystery School learns to draw the creative force upwards to the brain and transmute it to soul power by a life of chastity and self sacrifice.This soul power he uses to project himself into the higher spheres by way of the head.The black magician, incapable of self-sacrifice,obtains the needed power by perverted use of the life force of his victims, which projects him downwards,by way of the feet,the Silver Cord then protrudes through the lower organ, and he must re-enter the same way.
Therefore the five pointed star with two horns pointing up, and one down,is the symbol of black magic,and it was easy for Lucifer to enter the study of Faust as the two horns of the star were pointed towards the entrance, but when he wishes to leave and is confronted by the one point of the symbol,his black soul is repelled by the emblem of purity and love.We have, of course,no legal evidence that Christ entered the earth, and is there partially confined,as we are in our dense bodies,but there is plenty of mystic knowledge, and by the law of analogy it is also plainly indicated that Christ spends His year-days partly within and partly without the earth.
Cancer,ruled by the Moon is the sign of Conception.The Egyptians pictured it as a Beetle,and the Scarab was their symbol of the soul.When the Light of the World,the Sun,enters Cancer in June, the creative power of the last cycle,which gave life to the earth, has been spent,and in order to renew this life,which would otherwise wane,it must again descend.At the Fall equinox in Libra, the Scales tip,and the germinative force enters our earth, reaching the center at Christmas, when the Sun is at its lowest point of declination,the winter solstice.
Thence the germinative force, the Christ-ray,radiates to fructify matter anew and it reaches the pheriphery of the earth at the time the Sun crosses the celestial equator at the vernal equinox in Aries.Then the Savior,the lamb of God, dies to the world,but becomes alive to the higher spheres.Thus,as we are confined in our dense bodies from morning till night, through the activity of the day,so the Christ is confined in the earth from the Fall to the Vernal equinox,which is the time when physical activities are largely in abeyance, but spiritual efforts bring best results.And as we are released from our bodies at night, and enter the invisible worlds to recuperate from the,to the spirit,cramping conditions of physical existence,so also the Christ is temporarily released from the earth at the cross (ifixion) when we see the sun "passover"the celestial equator and soar into the high heavens.That, therefore is the time we feel spiritual impulse waning, and devote our energy to physical activity of tilling the soil and making two blades of grass grow where there grew but one.
According to the common view of the matter, Christ completed the Sacrifice on Golgotha,but as a matter of fact,that was only the beginning, He is still bound to the earth as we are to our "Bodies of Death.''
He suffers as we suffer, only with an intensity we cannot comprehend, He is still "groaning and travailing,
waiting for the manifestation of the Sons of God" which means ourselves.When a sufficient number have experienced the Birth of the Christ within,so that they can bear their Brothers burden and give their life as Christ is now giving His, then will the hour of Liberation strike,and Christ may permanently return to the Sun.But as He entered at the periphery when He came, so, under the law just explained, must He again return to the surface of the earth, and that in itself constitutes the Second Coming.
There is no warning in the Bible more empathic than that given by Christ against claimants to Christhood.He
declared that some would work signs and wonders which might deceive the very elect,and we cannot do better than bring His words to mind as we start consideration of our last question :

HOW SHALL WE KNOW CHRIST AT HIS APPEARING?

Christ said :"Take heed lest any man deceive you;for many shall come in my name,saying, I am Christ ; and shall deceive many.And if any man shall say to you, Lo,here is Christ; or,lo, He is there;believe him not.
For false Christs and false prophets shall rise,and shall show signs and wonders,to seduce,if it were possible,the very elect.then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory....He shall send His Angels and gather together His elect from the four winds....But of that day and hour knoweth no man,no,not the angels which are in heaven,neither the Son,but the Father." Mark 13.
From these passages we see how careful we must be not to be lured away by false deceivers,but there is plenty of light also to guide us aright, and certain signs are indicated whereby we may surely know Christ from imitators. 
The most conclusive sign of impostors is that no matter how clever their plea, they come clothed in a physical body.There are good reason why.

CHRIST WILL NOT COME IN A PHYSICAL BODY

No such vehicle can endure the tremendous vibrations of so great a spirit.You will remember from the scriptures that Christ frequently absented Himself from His disciples.On these occasions He was wont to take Jesus body to the Essenes who were men of our evolution,and expert esoteric physicians,skilled in the care of the body.They restored the tone, and thus held the body together for three years.From Golgotha the body was taken to the grave, and as the cohesive influence was withdrawn,the atoms simply scattered to the four winds,and when the tomb was opened,only the clothing was found.
To obtain another physical vehicle for the Second Coming,in the same manner as the first was provided would be difficult;but,could,of course, be accomplished.Under the law that a Spirit must leave where it enters however, only that one body of Jesus would avail,and as that has been destroyed it is impossible that Christ should appear in a physical vehicle.Therefore, as said,possession of such a body marks the pretender and impostor.But,supposing that this "Law," is only a figment of the writers fancy, and that the law of analogy quoted in support,is only coincidence, our contention is still supported by the Bible,regardless of all other evidence.Christ said: "if they shall say unto you.Behold,He is in the desert;go not forth;behold,He is in the secret chambers; believe it not."
Thus Christ is not to be found in any physical place.Paul also declares emphatically that "flesh and blood' cannot inherit the Kingdom, and if we are to  be "clothed with a house from heaven/' why should the leader of the new dispensation have a physical vehicle?
But the Bible does not leave the matter by telling us where not to look for Christ.He said emphatically: "The Son of Man shall come in the clouds"
When He finally left His disciples,"He was taken up,and a cloud received Him out of their sight.And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up ,two men stood by them in white apparal which also said: "He shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.(Acts I. 10-11.) 
Paul says: "The Lord Himself shall  descend from heaven...then we ... shall be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air." (I.  Thes. IV. 16-17).
John saw the first heaven and earth pass away the sea dried up,and a holy city descended from heaven,of which Christ was regent.These things are manifestly physical impossibilities.A body of flesh and blood cannot ascend into the air,and Paul emphatically asserts that "flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God." If we cannot enter in  that garment, how,in a Universe of Law,can Christ,the Leader,use a physical body?
If we can now find out what sort of a vehicle He used, we shall know how we may recognize Him, and also how we shall be constituted,for "we shall be like Him" according to John:"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it does not yet appear,what we shall be ; but we know that when He shall appear,we shall be like Him." (I.John,III.2.) Paul says: "Our Commonwealth (not "conversation," as translated,the Greek word is "politeuma" ; polity,or commonwealth, and is used by the apostle in reference to the "new heaven and earth").
Our Commonwealth is in heaven,whence also we are expecting a Savior,the Lord Jesus Christ,who shall change our vile body that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body.(Phil. III. 20-21).
The body Christ used after Golgotha was also capable of entering a room with closed doors,for He thus appeared to His disciples and allowed Thomas to touch Him.Can pseudo Christs in a physical body do that?
I believe not.That feat requires a vehicle more subtle than the physical, and no amount of sophistory can evade this argument that Christ will use a vehicle more subtle than the physical,for the Bible teaches that Christ used such a subtle body after the resurrection,that He ascended to Heaven therein,that He is to return in that same body, and that we shall be changed to a state where we are like Him in that respect.
The final question then arises:Does the Bible then teach us definitely what that vehicle is,and is there any
information whereby we may obtain full and definite knowledge concerning this new vehicle? For our answer we shall go to that inimitable 15th chapter of 1st Corinthians  where Paul teaches the doctrine of rebirth by means of the seed atoms as clearly as the Western Wisdom Teaching of today.
In the English version the 45th verse reads: "There is  a natural body and a spiritual body";but the New Testament was not written in English,and as the translators knew nothing of the inner teachings they had no idea how to translate the Greek word in that case,to them it seemed senseless,so they translated it as best they knew.I will leave you, however,to translate it for yourselves,though you may not be Greek scholars.
The word that is used there,and translated "natural body",is Soma Psuchicon.Soma is a Greed word that everybody agrees is body, there is no question about that  but Psuchicon psuche (psyche) the soul,a soul body;they had never heard of that, it probably seemed foolish to them.It is true that Paul states in 1st Thessalonians, 5 :23, that man's whole being is spirit,soul and body, but most likely they regarded soul and spirit as synonymous but there is a vast difference however,as explained in the "Rosicrucian Mysteries," so they translated the word,"natural body  Now, that is the vehicle Paul refers to as the one in which we shall meet Him, it is composed of ether and therefore capable of levitation and passing walls as all dense matter is permeated with ether.
Invisible Helpers use it today as Christ did.At the first blush it seems very strange nevertheless,when it is said that we shall meet the Lord "in the air/ that this earth is to be left behind, but it is not strange,either,when we consider that the path of evolution has ever been from within outward;that there was a time in the Lemurian Epoch when this earth was a fiery state,and when man lived on the crust that was forming close to the fiery core, in a body that was just beginning to encrust; that he lived,in the Atlantean Epoch,down in the dense mist which arose from the cooling earth as said in Genesis 2,in the basins of the earth,then he was called, as was said in the German folk story,"Nibelungen," Nibel meaning mist,and Ungen children Children of the Mist.
We have the Bible story of how they were guided by their teachers, how gradually this foggy atmosphere of the earth condensed when the planet cooled,and finally the waters came down from Heaven in that which is termed 'the flood.' We then know that man left the low lands,which are submerged by the condensed mist which is the sea, and entered upon a new era of development under the present conditions,that he then saw for the first time, when the sun shone upon the clouds, the rainbow,and that it was told him that so long as that sign remained the succession of changes which we know as the seasons would continue,and so long as we have this atmospheric condition,this era of alternations will naturally continue, slowly but surely, we are climbing towards the hilltops of the earth,we seek higher and higher levels.The higher the evolution of the races,the more they want to go into the air,and gradually they are leaving the lowlands behind.As it was in the days of Noah,the day will come when there will be a great cosmic change ; 
Christ refers to it in speaking of His coming, where he says:"As it was in the days of Noah,so shall it be in the days of the Son of man." People went about as they had always done,they married and they gave in marriage,they ate and drank and lived their worldly lives but suddenly the flood descended upon ancient Atlantis, and the vehicles they had could no longer be of service to them;they needed vehicles in which they could accommodate themselves to the new atmospheric conditions,just as the baby when it is born,must accommodate itself  to the instant change from a breathing under water to breathing in the air.Unless it can do that,it perishes, and it was the same in the case of the Atlanteans who were used to breathe in the watery mist atmosphere.
Those who were not physiologically adjustable drowned.Christ said that a similar condition will be found at His coming.Those who lived in Atlantis might not have noticed the physiological development which took place in some, and thus made them fit to change from breathing of water,to a breathing of air directly,into the lungs;similarly there is a change going on in humanity that is not observable by those who have not cultivated spiritual sight, but it is a fact,nevertheless,that an auric atmosphere is surrounding every human being.
We know that often we feel the presence of a person whom we do not see, who may be standing behind us, but we feel it because there is  this  atmosphere outside of our dense bodies,and that is gradually changing,gradually it is becoming more and more golden in the West.The further we go with the sun, the more this golden color increases  the color of the Christ and of the Christlike: the saints whom painters have depicted with a halo, gradually we are becoming more like Him, and this Soma Psuchicon or vital bodyis taking shape,is being made ready as our wedding garment.
An increasing number of people are becoming capable of functioning that vehicle,and more and more are thus getting ready for the day of Christ.This change is not wrought, by any physical process,but by service,by love,by what we know in the Western world as altruism, which is permeating society more and more.We are becoming more and more human,we are becoming more and more Christlike,though far from perfect, but though the day will not perhaps be in this century, or the next,or the next millenium, we nevertheless can see that spiritual change that is going on in mankind, and it depends upon us to hasten the day of Christ, for as He Himself has said,"That day knoweth no man."
No man can tell when a sufficient number shall have evolved that soul that Soma Psuchicon to such a condition that we shall be able to do the work which He is now doing for us.
We have come down into the sea of matter,and for our sake it has been necessary for the Christ to enter the earth to help us from within.For our sake He is now groaning and travailing there,waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God, and it depends upon us whether we will hasten or whether we will retard that day.Every act of ours has some effect in that respect every single one of us has our work to do in this world,and the sooner we learn to do it the better it is for us.
Not that we should go abroad to  seek the Christ He is not found there.He said Himself,"Go not out in the desert", do not seek in those places;the Christ is formed from within  that soul body that is gradually becoming capable of lifting itself above the hills,is struggling for recognition within each aspirant to the higher life;as Faust says:'Two souls,alas!are housed within my breast;And struggle there for undivided reign.One to the earth, with passionate desire,And closely clinging organs, still adheres;Above the mists the other does aspire,With sacred ardor,unto purer spheres."
Friends,in every one of us there is that struggle going on between the higher and the lower nature.Paul fought the battle,and every seeking soul must fight the battle,but do not think of going into the wide world to fight and to find.Sir Launf al went away from his home as a young man;he spent a whole life seeking the grail,and then when he came back to his own castle,he found the same beggar that he had scornfully left at his departure, and when he did the right thing,when the spirit of Service entered him, then the Christ manifested.The cup that he filled at the streamlet's brink,and gave the leper to eat and drink of that cup and that crust, the Savior, standing before him,said.

"This is my body and this is my blood."
'The holy supper is kept indeed In whatso we share with another's need."

It is not what we give, but what we share.Those who only give of abundance,of the things that they have no need of  the things that are really a burden to them the things that they do not miss at all they do not know what giving is.'The gift without the giver is bare" that is the point;unless we give ourselves our gifts are barren.
"Greater love hath no man than that he lay down his life for his friend." That is not a single act of laying down
the life for the friend, but it is the constant daily self-sacrifice."I was anhungered, and I was thirsty,and ye
visited me." That is the only requisite.May we earn it,friends.Neither need we seek far;it is right here.We all
know that little poem about letting our light shine just where we are.Everyone of us cannot be a star,everyone of  us cannot shine, everyone cannot be a leader, but everyone can do just the little bit,just light his own little bit of a candle, and let that dispel some of the darkness in his or her immediate environment.
That is all we have to do,and if we do just that much, then we shall find that that candle will be as a blazing star to guide us to the Christ at His coming,and then we shall be sure to know Him,for we shall find the response from within.It is said,we shall know Him because we shall be like Him, and seeing that He has no physical body in which to come, we must evolve that vehicle of the soul,that Soma Psuchicon,so that when He appears,we may meet Him,and be clothed  in that golden wedding garment.
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