Theosophical University Press Online Edition
"Christian and Catholic sons may accuse their fathers of the crime of heresy . . . although they may know that their parents will be burnt with fire and put to death for it. . . . And not only may they refuse them food, if they attempt to turn them from the Catholic faith, BUT THEY MAY ALSO JUSTLY KILL THEM." — Jesuit Precept (F. STEPHEN FAGUNDEZ, in Proecepta Decalogi. Lugduni, 1640).
"Most Wise. — What hour is it?
"Respect. K. S. Warden. — It is the first hour of the day, the time when the veil of the temple was rent asunder, when darkness and consternation were spread over the earth — when the light was darkened — when the implements of Masonry were broken — when the flaming star disappeared — when the cubic stone was broken — when the 'WORD' was lost." — Magna est Veritas et Praevalebit.
THE greatest of the kabalistic works of the Hebrews -- Sohar — was compiled by Rabbi Simeon Ben-Iochai. According to some critics, this was done years before the Christian era; according to others only after the destruction of the temple. However, it was completed only by the son of Simeon, Rabbi Eleazar, and his secretary, Rabbi Abba; for the work is so immense and the subjects treated so abstruse that even the whole life of this Rabbi, called the Prince of kabalists, did not suffice for the task. On account of its being known that he was in possession of this knowledge, and of the Mercaba, which insured the reception of the "Word," his very life was endangered, and he had to fly to the wilderness, where he lived in a cave for twelve years, surrounded by faithful disciples, and finally died there amid signs and wonders.*
But voluminous as is the work, and containing as it does the main points of the secret and oral tradition, it still does not embrace it all. It
* Many are the marvels recorded as having taken place at his death, or we should rather say his translation; for he did not die as others do, but having suddenly disappeared, while a dazzling light filled the cavern with glory, his body was again seen upon its subsidence. When this heavenly light gave place to the habitual semi-darkness of the gloomy cave — then only, says Ginsburg, "the disciples of Israel perceived that the lamp of Israel was extinguished." His biographers tell us that there were voices heard from Heaven during the preparation for his funeral and at his interment. When the coffin was lowered down into the deep cave excavated for it, a flame broke out from it, and a voice mighty and majestic pronounced these words in the air: "This is he who caused the earth to quake, and the kingdoms to shake!"
is well known that this venerable kabalist never imparted the most important points of his doctrine otherwise than orally, and to a very limited number of friends and disciples, including his only son. Therefore, without the final initiation into the Mercaba the study of the Kabala will be ever incomplete, and the Mercaba can be taught only in "darkness, in a deserted place, and after many and terrific trials." Since the death of Simeon Ben-Iochai this hidden doctrine has remained an inviolate secret for the outside world. Delivered only as a mystery, it was communicated to the candidate orally, "face to face and mouth to ear."
This Masonic commandment, "mouth to ear, and the word at low breath," is an inheritance from the Tanaim and the old Pagan Mysteries. Its modern use must certainly be due to the indiscretion of some renegade kabalist, though the "word" itself is but a "substitute" for the "lost word," and is a comparatively modern invention, as we will further show. The real sentence has remained forever in the sole possession of the adepts of various countries of the Eastern and Western hemispheres. Only a limited number among the chiefs of the Templars, and some Rosicrucians of the seventeenth century, always in close relations with Arabian alchemists and initiates, could really boast of its possession. From the seventh to the fifteenth centuries there was no one who could claim it in Europe; and although there had been alchemists before the days of Paracelsus, he was the first who had passed through the true initiation, that last ceremony which conferred on the adept the power of travelling toward the "burning bush" over the holy ground, and to "burn the golden calf in the fire, grind it to powder, and strow it upon the water." Verily, then, this magic water, and the "lost word," resuscitated more than one of the pre-Mosaic Adonirams, Gedaliahs, and Hiram Abiffs. The real word now substituted by Mac Benac and Mah was used ages before its pseudo-magical effect was tried on the "widow's sons" of the last two centuries. Who was, in fact, the first operative Mason of any consequence? Elias Ashmole, the last of the Rosicrucians and alchemists. Admitted to the freedom of the Operative Masons' Company in London, in 1646, he died in 1692. At that time Masonry was not what it became later; it was neither a political nor a Christian institution, but a true secret organization, which admitted into the ties of fellowship all men anxious to obtain the priceless boon of liberty of conscience, and avoid clerical persecution.* Not until about thirty years after his death did what is now termed modern Freemasonry see the light. It was born on the 24th day of June, 1717, in the Apple-tree Tavern, Charles Street, Covent Garden, London. And it was then, as we are told in Anderson's
* Plot: "Natural History of Staffordshire." Published in 1666.
Constitutions, that the only four lodges in the south of England elected Anthony Sayer first Grand Master of Masons. Notwithstanding its great youth, this grand lodge has ever claimed the acknowledgment of its supremacy by the whole body of the fraternity throughout the whole world, as the Latin inscription on the plate put beneath the corner-stone of Freemasons' Hall, London, in 1775, would tell to those who could see it. But of this more anon.
In Die Kabbala, by Franck, the author, following its "esoteric ravings," as he expresses it, gives us, in addition to the translations, his commentaries. Speaking of his predecessors, he says that Simeon Ben-Iochai mentions repeatedly what the "companions" have taught in the older works. And the author cites one "Ieba, the old, and Hamnuna, the old."* But what the two "old" ones mean, or who they were, in fact, he tells us not, for he does not know himself.
Among the venerable sect of the Tanaim, or rather the Tananim, the wise men, there were those who taught the secrets practically and initiated some disciples into the grand and final Mystery. But the Mishna Hagiga, 2d section, say that the table of contents of the Mercaba "must only be delivered to wise old ones."** The Gemara is still more dogmatic. "The more important secrets of the Mysteries were not even revealed to all priests. Alone the initiates had them divulged." And so we find the same great secresy prevalent in every ancient religion.
But, as we see, neither the Sohar nor any other kabalistic volume contains merely Jewish wisdom. The doctrine itself being the result of whole millenniums of thought, is therefore the joint property of adepts of every nation under the sun. Nevertheless, the Sohar teaches practical occultism more than any other work on that subject; not as it is translated though, and commented upon by its various critics, but with the secret signs on its margins. These signs contain the hidden instructions, apart from the metaphysical interpretations and apparent absurdities so fully credited by Josephus, who was never initiated, and gave out the dead letter as he had received it.***
The real practical magic contained in the Sohar and other kabalistic works, is only of use to those who read it within. The Christian apos-
* "Die Kabbala," 75; "Sod," vol. ii.
** "Die Kabbala," 47.
*** He relates how Rabbi Eleazar, in the presence of Vespasian and his officers, expelled demons from several men by merely applying to the nose of the demoniac one of the number of roots recommended by King Solomon! The distinguished historian assures us that the Rabbi drew out the devils through the nostrils of the patients in the name of Solomon and by the power of the incantations composed by the king-kabalist. Josephus: "Antiquities," VIII., ii., 5.
tles — at least, those who are said to have produced "miracles" at will* — had to be acquainted with this science. It ill-behooves a Christian to look with horror or derision upon "magic" gems, amulets, and other talismans against the "evil eye," which serve as charms to exercise a mysterious influence, either on the possessor, or the person whom the magician desires to control. There are still extant a number of such charmed amulets in public and private collections of antiquities. Illustrations of convex gems, with mysterious legends — the meaning of which baffles all scientific inquiry — are given by many collectors. King shows several such in his Gnostics, and he describes a white carnelian (chalcedony), covered on both sides with interminable legends, to interpret which would ever prove a failure; yes, in every case, perhaps, but that of a Hermetic student or an adept. But we refer the reader to his interesting work, and the talismans described in his plates, to show that even the "Seer of Patmos" himself was well-versed in this kabalistic science of talismans and gems. St. John clearly alludes to the potent "white carnelian" — a gem well-known among adepts, as the "alba petra," or the stone of initiation, on which the word "prize" is generally found engraved, as it was given to the candidate who had successfully passed through all the preliminary trials of a neophyte. The fact is, that no less than the Book of Job, the whole Revelation, is simply an allegorical narrative of the Mysteries and initiation therein of a candidate, who is John himself. No high Mason, well versed in the different degrees, can fail to see it. The numbers seven, twelve, and others are all so many lights thrown over the obscurity of the work. Paracelsus maintained the same some centuries ago. And when we find the "one like unto the Son of man" saying (chap. ii. 17): "To him that overcometh, will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a WHITE STONE, and in the stone a new name written" — the word — which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it, what Master Mason can doubt but it refers to the last head-line of this chapter?
In the pre-Christian Mithraic Mysteries, the candidate who fearlessly overcame the "twelve Tortures," which preceded the final initiation, received a small round cake or wafer of unleavened bread, symbolizing, in one of its meanings, the solar disk and known as the heavenly bread or "manna," and having figures traced on it. A lamb, or a bull was killed, and with the blood the candidate had to be sprinkled, as in the case of the Emperor Julian's initiation. The seven rules or mysteries
* There are unconscious miracles produced sometimes, which, like the phenomena now called "Spiritual," are caused through natural cosmic powers, mesmerism, electricity, and the invisible beings who are always at work around us, whether they be human or elementary spirits.
were then delivered to the "newly-born" that are represented in the Revelation as the seven seals which are opened "in order" (see chap. v. and vi.). There can be no doubt that the Seer of Patmos referred to this ceremony.
The origin of the Roman Catholic amulets and "relics" blessed by the Pope, is the same as that of the "Ephesian Spell," or magical characters engraved either on a stone or drawn on a piece of parchment; the Jewish amulets with verses out of the Law, and called phylacteria, [[Phulakteria]], and the Mahometan charms with verses of the Koran. All these were used as protective magic spells; and worn by the believers on their persons. Epiphanius, the worthy ex-Marcosian, who speaks of these charms when used by the Manicheans as amulets, that is to say, things worn round the neck (Periapta), and "incantations and such-like trickery," cannot well throw a slur upon the "trickery" of the Pagans and Gnostics, without including the Roman Catholic and Popish amulets.
But consistency is a virtue which we fear is losing, under Jesuit influence, the slight hold it may ever have had on the Church. That crafty, learned, conscienceless, terrible soul of Jesuitism, within the body of Romanism, is slowly but surely possessing itself of the whole prestige and spiritual power that clings to it. For the better exemplification of our theme it will be necessary to contrast the moral principles of the ancient Tanaim and Theurgists with those professed by the modern Jesuits, who practically control Romanism to-day, and are the hidden enemy that would-be reformers must encounter and overcome. Throughout the whole of antiquity, where, in what land, can we find anything like this Order or anything even approaching it? We owe a place to the Jesuits in this chapter on secret societies, for more than any other they are a secret body, and have a far closer connection with actual Masonry — in France and Germany at least — than people are generally aware of. The cry of an outraged public morality was raised against this Order from its very birth.* Barely fifteen years had elapsed after the bull approving its constitution was promulgated, when its members began to be driven away from one place to the other. Portugal and the Low Countries got rid of them, in 1578; France in 1594; Venice in 1606; Naples in 1622. From St. Petersburg they were expelled in 1815, and from all Russia in 1820.
It was a promising child from its very teens. What it grew up to be every one knows well. The Jesuits have done more moral harm in this world than all the fiendish armies of the mythical Satan. Whatever extravagance may seem to be involved in this remark, will disappear when
* It dates from 1540; and in 1555 a general outcry was raised against them in some parts of Portugal, Spain, and other countries.
our readers in America, who now know little about them, are made acquainted with their principles (principia) and rules as they appear in various works written by the Jesuits themselves. We beg leave to remind the public that every one of the statements which follow in quotation marks are extracted from authenticated manuscripts, or folios printed by this distinguished body. Many are copied from the large Quarto* published by the authority of, and verified and collated by the Commissioners of the French Parliament. The statements therein were collected and presented to the King, in order that, as the "Arrest du Parlement du 5 Mars, 1762," expresses it, "the elder son of the Church might be made aware of the perversity of this doctrine. . . . A doctrine authorizing Theft, Lying, Perjury, Impurity, every Passion and Crime, teaching Homicide, Parricide, and Regicide, overthrowing religion in order to substitute for it superstition, by favoring Sorcery, Blasphemy, Irreligion, and Idolatry . . . etc." Let us then examine the ideas on magic of the Jesuits. Writing on this subject in his secret instructions, Anthony Escobart** says:
"It is lawful . . . to make use of the science acquired through the assistance of the Devil, provided the preservation and use of that knowledge do not depend upon the Devil, for the knowledge is good in itself, and the sin by which it was acquired has gone by."*** Hence, why should not a Jesuit cheat the Devil as well as he cheats every layman?
"Astrologers and soothsayers are either bound, or are not bound, to restore the reward of their divination, if the event does not come to pass. I own," remarks the good Father Escobar, "that the former opinion does not at all please me, because, when the astrologer or diviner has exerted all the diligence in the diabolic art which is essential to his purpose, he has fulfilled his duty, whatever may be the result. As the physician . . . is not bound to restore his fee . . . if his patient should die; so neither is the astrologer bound to restore his charge . . . ex-
* Extracts from this "Arret" were compiled into a work in 4 vols., 12mo., which appeared at Paris, in 1762, and was known as "Extraits des Assertions, etc." In a work entitled "Reponse aux Assertions," an attempt was made by the Jesuits to throw discredit upon the facts collected by the Commissioners of the French Parliament in 1762, as for the most part malicious fabrications. "To ascertain the validity of this impeachment," says the author of "The Principles of the Jesuits," "the libraries of the two universities of the British Museum and of Sion College have been searched for the authors cited; and in every instance where the volume was found, the correctness of the citation established."
** "Theologiae Moralis," Tomus iv., Lugduni, 1663.
*** Tom. iv., lib. xxviii., sect. 1, de Praecept I., c. 20, n. 184.
cept where he has used no effort, or was ignorant of his diabolic art; because, when he has used his endeavors he has not deceived."*
Further, we find the following on astrology: "If any one affirms, through conjecture founded upon the influence of the stars and the character, disposition of a man, that he will be a soldier, an ecclesiastic, or a bishop, this divination may be devoid of all sin; because the stars and the disposition of the man may have the power of inclining the human will to a certain lot or rank, but not of constraining it."**
Busembaum and Lacroix, in Theologia Moralis,*** say, "Palmistry may be considered lawful, if from the lines and divisions of the hands it can ascertain the disposition of the body, and conjecture, with probability, the propensities and affections of the soul."****
This noble fraternity, which many preachers have of late so vehemently denied to have ever been a secret one, has been sufficiently proved as such. Their constitutions were translated into Latin by the Jesuit Polancus, and printed in the college of the Society at Rome, in 1558. "They were jealously kept secret, the greater part of the Jesuits themselves knowing only extracts from them.***** They were never produced to the light until 1761, when they were published by order of the French Parliament in 1761, 1762, in the famous process of Father Lavalette." The degrees of the Order are: I. Novices; II. Lay Brothers, or temporal Coadjutors; III. Scholastics; IV. Spiritual Coadjutors; V. Professed of Three Vows; VI. Professed of Five Vows. "There is also a secret class, known only to the General and a few faithful Jesuits, which, perhaps more than any other, contributed to the dreaded and mysterious power of the Order," says Niccolini. The Jesuits reckon it among the greatest achievements of their Order that Loyola supported, by a special memorial to the Pope, a petition for the reorganization of that abominable and abhorred instrument of wholesale butchery — the infamous tribunal of the Inquisition.
This Order of Jesuits is now all-powerful in Rome. They have been reinstalled in the Congregation of Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Affairs, in the Department of the Secretary of State, and in the Ministry of Foreign
* Ibid., sect. 2, de Praecept I., Probl. 113, n. 586.
** Richard Arsdekin, "Theologia Tripartita," Coloniae, 1744, Tom. ii., Pars. ii., Tr. 5, c. 1, § 2, n. 4.
*** "Theologia Moralis nunc pluribus partibus aucta, a R. P. Claudio Lacroix, Societatis Jesu." Coloniae, 1757 (Ed. Mus. Brit.).
**** Tom. ii., lib. iii., Pars. 1, Fr. 1, c. 1, dub. 2, resol. viii. What a pity that the counsel for the defense had not bethought them to cite this orthodox legalization of "cheating by palmistry or otherwise," at the recent religio-scientific prosecution of the medium Slade, in London.
***** Niccolini: "History of the Jesuits."
Affairs. The Pontifical Government was for years previous to Victor Emanuel's occupation of Rome entirely in their hands. The Society now numbers 8,584 members. But we must see what are their chief rules. By what is seen above, in becoming acquainted with their mode of action, we may ascertain what the whole Catholic body is likely to be. Says Mackenzie: "The Order has secret signs and passwords, according to the degrees to which the members belong, and as they wear no particular dress, it is very difficult to recognize them, unless they reveal themselves as members of the Order; for they may appear as Protestants or Catholics, democrats or aristocrats, infidels or bigots, according to the special mission with which they are entrusted. Their spies are everywhere, of all apparent ranks of society, and they may appear learned and wise, or simple or foolish, as their instructions run. There are Jesuits of both sexes, and all ages, and it is a well-known fact that members of the Order, of high family and delicate nurture, are acting as menial servants in Protestant families, and doing other things of a similar nature in aid of the Society's purposes. We cannot be too much on our guard, for the whole Society, being founded on a law of unhesitating obedience, can bring its force on any given point with unerring and fatal accuracy."*
The Jesuits maintain that "the Society of Jesus is not of human invention, but it proceeded from him whose name it bears. For Jesus himself described that rule of life which the Society follows, first by his example, and afterwards by his words."**
Let, then, all pious Christians listen and acquaint themselves with this alleged "rule of life" and precepts of their God, as exemplified by the Jesuits. Peter Alagona (St. Thomae Aquinatis Summae Theologiae Compendium) says: "By the command of God it is lawful to kill an innocent person, to steal, or commit . . . (Ex mandato Dei licet occidere innocentem, furari, fornicari); because he is the Lord of life and death, and all things, and it is due to him thus to fulfil his command" (Ex prima secundae, Quaest., 94).
"A man of a religious order, who for a short time lays aside his habit for a sinful purpose, is free from heinous sin, and does not incur the penalty of excommunication" (Lib. iii., sec. 2., Probl. 44, D. 212).***
* "Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia," p. 369.
** Imago: "Primi Saeculi Societatis Jesu," lib. 1., c. 3., p. 64.
*** Anthony Escobar: "Universae Theologiae Moralis receptiore, absque lite sententiae," etc., Tomus i., Lugduni, 1652 (Ed. Bibl. Acad. Cant.). "Idem sentio, e breve illud tempus ad unius horae spatium traho. Religiosus itaque habitum demittens assignato hoc temporis interstitio, non incurrit excommunicationem, etiamsi dimittat non solum ex causa, turpi, scilicet fornicandi, aut clam aliquid abripiendi, set etiam ut incognitus ineat lupanar." Probl. 44, n. 213.
John Baptist Taberna (Synopsis Theologiae Practicae), propounds the following question: "Is a judge bound to restore the bribe which he has received for passing sentence?" Answer: "If he has received the bribe for passing an -unjust sentence, it is probable that he may keep it. . . . This opinion is maintained and defended by fifty-eight doctors"* (Jesuits).
We must abstain at present from proceeding further. So disgustingly licentious, hypocritical, and demoralizing are nearly all of these precepts, that it was found impossible to put many of them in print, except in the Latin language.** We will return to some of the more decent as we proceed, for the sake of comparison. But what are we to think of the future of the Catholic world, if it is to be controlled in word and deed by this villainous society? And that it is to be so, we can hardly doubt, as we find the Cardinal Archbishop of Cambrai loudly proclaiming the same to all the faithful? His pastoral has made a certain noise in France; and yet, as two centuries have rolled away since the expose of these infamous principles, the Jesuits have had ample time to lie so successfully in denying the just charges, that most Catholics will never believe such a thing. The infallible Pope, Clement XIV. (Ganganelli), suppressed them on the 23d of July, 1773, and yet they came to life again; and another equally infallible Pope, Pius VII., reestablished them on the 7th of August, 1814.
But we will hear what Monseigneur of Cambrai is swift to proclaim in 1876. We quote from a secular paper:
"Among other things, he maintains that Clericalism, Ultramontanism, and Jesuitism are one and the same thing — that is to say, Catholicism — and that the distinctions between them have been created by the enemies of religion. There was a time, he says, when a certain theological opinion was commonly professed in France concerning the authority of the Pope. It was restricted to our nation, and was of recent origin. The civil power during a century and a half imposed official instruction. Those who profess these opinions were called Gallicans, and those who protested were called Ultramontanes, because they had their doctrinal centre beyond the Alps, at Rome. To-day the distinction between the two schools is no longer admissible. Theological Gallicanism can no longer exist, since this opinion has ceased to be tolerated by the Church. It has been solemnly condemned, past all return, by the OEcumenical Council of the Vatican. One cannot now be Catholic without being Ultramontane — and Jesuit."***
* Pars. 11, Tra. 2, c. 31.
** See "The Principles of the Jesuits, Developed in a Collection of Extracts from their own Authors." London, 1839.
*** From the Pastoral of the Archbishop of Cambrai.
This settles the question. We leave inferences for the present, and proceed to compare some of the practices and precepts of the Jesuits, with those of individual mystics and organized castes and societies of the ancient time. Thus the fair-minded reader may be placed in a position to judge between them as to the tendency of their doctrines to benefit or degrade humanity.
Rabbi Jehoshua Ben Chananea, who died about A. D. 72, openly declared that he had performed "miracles" by means of the Book of Sepher Jezireh, and challenged every skeptic.* Franck, quoting from the Babylonian Talmud, names two other thaumaturgists, Rabbis Chanina and Oshoi.**
Simon Magus was doubtless a pupil of the Tanaim of Samaria, the reputation which he left behind, together with the title given to him of "the Great Power of God," testifies strongly in favor of the ability of his teachers. The calumnies so zealously disseminated against him by the unknown authors and compilers of the Acts and other writings, could not cripple the truth to such an extent as to conceal the fact that no Christian could rival him in thaumaturgic deeds. The story told about his falling during an aerial flight, breaking both his legs, and then committing suicide, is ridiculous. Instead of praying mentally that it should so happen, why did not the apostles pray rather that they should be allowed to outdo Simon in wonders and miracles, for then they might have proved their case far more easily than they did, and so converted thousands to Christianity. Posterity has heard but one side of the story. Were the disciples of Simon to have a chance, we might find, perhaps, that it was Peter who broke both his legs, had we not known that this apostle was too prudent ever to venture himself in Rome. On the confession of several ecclesiastical writers, no apostle ever performed such "supernatural wonders." Of course pious people will say this only the more proves that it was the "Devil" who worked through Simon.
Simon was accused of blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, because he introduced it as the "Holy Spiritus, the Mens (Intelligence), or the mother of all." But we find the same expression used in the Book of Enoch, in which, in contradistinction to the "Son of Man," he says "Son of the Woman." In the Codex of the Nazarenes, and in the Sohar, as well in the Books of Hermes, the expression is usual; and even in the apocryphal Evangelium of the Hebrews we read that Jesus himself admitted the sex of the Holy Ghost by using the expression, "My mother, the Holy Pneuma."
But what is the heresy of Simon, or what the blasphemies of all the
* See "Jerusalem Talmud, Synhedrin," c. 7, etc.
** "Franck," pp. 55, 56.
heretics, in comparison with that of the same Jesuits who have now so completely mastered the Pope, ecclesiastical Rome, and the entire Catholic world? Listen again to their profession of faith.
"Do what your conscience tells you to be good and commanded: if, through invincible error, you believe lying or blasphemy to be commanded by God, blaspheme."*
"Omit to do what your conscience tells you is forbidden: omit the worship of God, if you invincibly believe it to be prohibited by God."**
"There is an implied law . . . obey an invincibly erroneous dictate of conscience. As often as you believe invincibly that a lie is commanded — lie."***
"Let us suppose a Catholic to believe invincibly that the worship of images is forbidden: in such a case our Lord Jesus Christ will be obliged to say to him, 'Depart from me thou cursed . . . because thou hast worshipped mine image.' So, neither, is there any absurdity in supposing that Christ may say, 'Come thou blessed . . . because thou hast lied, believing invincibly, that in such a case I commanded the lie.'"****
Does not this — but no! words fail to do justice to the emotions that these astonishing precepts must awaken in the breast of every honest person. Let silence, resulting from invincible disgust, be our only adequate tribute to such unparalleled moral obliquity.
The popular feeling in Venice (1606), when the Jesuits were driven out from that city, expressed itself most forcibly. Great crowds had accompanied the exiles to the sea-shore, and the farewell cry which resounded after them over the waves, was, "Ande in malora!" (Get away! and woe be to you.) "That cry was echoed throughout the two following centuries"; says Michelet, who gives this statement, "in Bohemia in 1618 . . . in India in 1623 . . . and throughout all Christendom in 1773."
In what particular was then Simon Magus a blasphemer, if he only did that which his conscience invincibly told him was true? And in what particular were ever the "Heretics," or even infidels of the worst kind more reprehensible than the Jesuits — those of Caen,***** for instance — who say the following:
"The Christian religion is . . . evidently credible, but not evidently true. It is evidently credible; for it is evident that whoever embraces
* Charles Antony Casnedi: "Crisis Theologica," Ulyssipone, 1711. Tome i., Disp. 6, Sect. 2, § 1, n. 59.
*** Ibid., § 2, n. 78.
**** Ibid., Sect. 5, § 1, n. 165.
***** "Thesis propugnata in regio Soc. Jes. Collegio celeberrimae Academiae Cadomensis, die Veneris, 30 Jan., 1693." Cadomi, 1693.
it is prudent. It is not evidently true; for it either teaches obscurely or the things which it teaches are obscure. And they who affirm that the Christian religion is evidently true, are obliged to confess that it is evidently false."
"Infer from hence —
"1. That it is not evident that there is now any true religion in the world.
"2. That it is not evident that of all religions existing upon the earth, the Christian religion is the most true; for have you travelled over all countries of the world, or do you know that others have? . . .
. . . . . . . .
"4. That it is not evident that the predictions of the prophets were given by inspiration of God; for what refutation will you bring against me, if I deny that they were true prophecies, or assert that they were only conjectures?
"5. That it is not evident that the miracles were real, which are recorded to have been wrought by Christ; although no one can prudently deny them (Position 6).
"Neither is an avowed belief in Jesus Christ, in the Trinity, in all the articles of Faith, and in the Decalogue, necessary to Christians. The only explicit belief which was necessary to the former (Jews) and is necessary to the latter (Christians) is 1, of God; 2, of a rewarding God" (Position 8).
Hence, it is also more than "evident" that there are moments in the life of the greatest liar when he may utter some truths. It is in this case so perfectly exemplified by the "good Fathers," that we can see more clearly than ever whence proceeded the solemn condemnations at the OEcumenical Council of 1870, of certain "heresies," and the enforcement of other articles of faith in which none believed less than those who inspired the Pope to issue them. History has yet perhaps to learn that the octogenarian Pope, intoxicated with the fumes of his newly-enforced infallibility, was but the faithful echo of the Jesuits. "An old man is raised trembling upon the pavois of the Vatican"; says Michelet, "every thing becomes absorbed and confined in him. . . . For fifteen centuries Christendom had submitted to the spiritual yoke of the Church. . . . But that yoke was not sufficient for them; they wanted the whole world to bend under the hand of one master. Here my own words are too weak; I shall borrow those of others. They (the Jesuits) wanted (this is the accusation flung in their faces by the Bishop of Paris in the full Council of Trent) faire de l'epouse de Jesus Christ une prostituee aux volontes d'un homme."*
* Michelet and Quinet of the College of France: "The Jesuits."
They have succeeded. The Church is henceforth an inert tool, and the Pope a poor weak instrument in the hands of this Order. But for how long Until the end comes, well may sincere Christians remember the prophetic lamentations of the thrice-great Trismegistus over his own country: "Alas, alas, my son, a day will come when the sacred hieroglyphics will become but idols. The world will mistake the emblems of science for gods, and accuse grand Egypt of having worshipped hell-monsters. But those who will calumniate us thus, will themselves worship Death instead of Life, folly in place of wisdom; they will denounce love and fecundity, fill their temples with dead men's bones, as relics, and waste their youth in solitude and tears. Their virgins will be widows (nuns) before being wives, and consume themselves in grief; because men will have despised and profaned the sacred mysteries of Isis."*
How correct this prophecy has proved we find in the following Jesuit precept, which again we extract from the Report of the Commissioners to the Parliament of Paris:
"The more true opinion is, that all inanimate and irrational things may be legitimately worshipped," says Father Gabriel Vasquez, treating of Idolatry. "If the doctrine which we have established be rightly understood, not only may a painted image and every holy thing, set forth by public authority for the worship of God, be properly adored with God as the image of Himself, but also any other thing of this world, whether it be inanimate and irrational, or in its nature rational."**
"Why may we not adore and worship with God, apart from danger, anything whatsoever of this world; for God is in it according to His essence . . . [This is precisely what the Pantheist and Hindu philosophy maintains.] and preserves it continually by His power; and when we bow down ourselves before it and impress it with a kiss, we present ourselves before God, the author of it, with the whole soul, as unto the prototype of the image [follow instances of relics, etc.] . . . . To this we may add that, since everything of this world is the work of God, and God is always abiding and working in it, we may more readily conceive Him to be in it than a saint in the vesture which belonged to him. And, therefore, without regarding in any way the dignity of the thing created, to direct our thoughts to God, while we give to the creature the sign and mark of submission by a kiss or prostration, is neither vain nor superstitious, but an act of the purest religion."***
A precept this, which, whether or not doing honor to the Christian Church, may at least be profitably quoted by any Hindu, Japanese, or
* Champollion: "Hermes Trismegistus," xxvii.
** "De Cultu Adorationis Libri Tres.," Lib. iii., Disp. i., c. 2.
other heathen when rebuked for his worship of idols. We purposely quote it for the benefit of our respected "heathen" friends who will see these lines.
The prophecy of Hermes is less equivocal than either of the alleged prophecies of Isaiah, which have furnished a pretext for saying that the gods of all the nations were demons. Only, facts are stronger, sometimes, than the strongest faith. All that the Jews learned, they had from older nations than themselves. The Chaldean Magi were their masters in the secret doctrine, and it was during the Babylonian captivity that they learned its metaphysical as well as practical tenets. Pliny mentions three schools of Magi: one that he shows to have been founded at an unknown antiquity; the other established by Osthanes and Zoroaster; the third by Moses and Jambres. And all the knowledge possessed by these different schools, whether Magian, Egyptian, or Jewish, was derived from India, or rather from both sides of the Himalayas. Many a lost secret lies buried under wastes of sand, in the Gobi Desert of Eastern Turkestan, and the wise men of Khotan have preserved strange traditions and knowledge of alchemy.
Baron Bunsen shows that the origin of the ancient prayers and hymns of the Egyptian Book of the Dead is anterior to Menes, and belongs, probably, to the pre-Menite Dynasty of Abydos, between 3100 and 4500 B.C. The learned Egyptologist makes the era of Menes, or National Empire, as not later than 3059 B.C., and demonstrates that "the system of Osirian worship and mythology was already formed"* before this era of Menes.
We find in the hymns of this scientifically-established pre-Edenic epoch (for Bunsen carries us back several centuries beyond the year of the creation of the world, 4004 B.C., as fixed by biblical chronology) precise lessons of morality, identical in substance, and nearly so in form of expression, with those preached by Jesus in his Sermon on the Mount. We give the authority of the most eminent Egyptologists and hierologists for our statement. "The inscriptions of the twelfth Dynasty are filled with ritualistic formulae," says Bunsen. Extracts from the Hermetic books are found on monuments of the earliest dynasties, and "on those of the twelfth (dynasty) portions of an earlier ritual are by no means uncommon. . . . To feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, bury the dead . . . formed the first duty of a pious man. . . . The doctrine of the immortality of the soul is as old as this period" (Tablet, Brit. Mus., 562).**
* "Egypt's Place in Universal History," vol. v., p. 94.
** Ibid., vol. v., p. 129.
And far older, perhaps. It dates from the time when the soul was an objective being, hence when it could hardly be denied by itself; when humanity was a spiritual race and death existed not. Toward the decline of the cycle of life, the ethereal man-spirit then fell into the sweet slumber of temporary unconsciousness in one sphere, only to find himself awakening in the still brighter light of a higher one. But while the spiritual man is ever striving to ascend higher and higher toward its source of being, passing through the cycles and spheres of individual life, physical man had to descend with the great cycle of universal creation until it found itself clothed with the terrestrial garments. Thenceforth the soul was too deeply buried under physical clothing to reassert its existence, except in the cases of those more spiritual natures, which, with every cycle, became more rare. And yet none of the pre-historical nations ever thought of denying either the existence or the immortality of the inner man, the real "self." Only, we must bear in mind the teachings of the old philosophies: the spirit alone is immortal — the soul, per se, is neither eternal nor divine. When linked too closely with the physical brain of its terrestrial casket, it gradually becomes a finite mind, a simple animal and sentient life-principle, the nephesh of the Hebrew Bible.*
The doctrine of man's triune nature is as clearly defined in the Hermetic books as it is in Plato's system, or again in that of the Buddhist and Brahmanical philosophies. And this is one of the most important as well as least understood of the doctrines of Hermetic science. The Egyptian Mysteries, so imperfectly known by the world, and only through
* "And God created . . . every nephesh (life) that moveth" (Gen. i. 21), meaning animals; and (Genesis ii. 7) it is said: "And man became a nephesh" (living soul); which shows that the word nephesh was indifferently applied to immortal man and to mortal beast. "And surely your blood of your nepheshim (lives) will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man" (Gen. ix. 5). "Escape for nepheshe" (escape for thy life is translated) (Gen. xix. 17). "Let us not kill him," reads the English version (Gen. xxxvii. 21). "Let us not kill his nephesh," is the Hebrew text. "Nephesh for nephesh," says Leviticus (xvii. 8). "He that killeth any man shall surely be put to death." "He that smiteth the nephesh of a man" (Levit. xxiv. 17); and from verse 18 and following it reads: "And he that killeth a beast (nephesh) shall make it good. . . . Beast for beast," whereas the original text has it "nephesh for nephesh."
1 Kings i. 12; ii. 23; iii. 11; xix. 2, 3, all have nephesh for life and soul. "Then shall thy nepheshah for (his) nepheshu," explains the prophet in 1 Kings xx. 39.
Truly, unless we read the "Old Testament" kabalistically and comprehend the hidden meaning thereof, it is very little we can learn from it as regards the soul's immortality. The common people among Hebrews had not the slightest idea of soul and spirit, and made no difference between life, blood, and soul, calling the latter the "breath of life." And King James's translators have made such a jumble of it that no one but a kabalist can restore the Bible to its original form.
the few brief allusions to them in the Metamorphoses of Apuleius, taught the greatest virtues. They unveiled to the aspirant in the "higher" mysteries of initiation that which many of our modern Hermetic students vainly search for in the kabalistic books, and which no obscure teachings of the Church, under the guidance of the Order of Jesuits, will ever be able to unveil. To compare, then, the ancient secret societies of the hierophants with the artificially-produced hallucinations of those few followers of Loyola, who were, perchance, sincere at the beginning of their career, is to insult the former. And yet, in justice to them, we are compelled to do so.
One of the most unconquerable obstacles to initiation, with the Egyptians as with the Greeks, was any degree of murder. One of the greatest titles to admission in the Order of Jesuits is a murder in defence of Jesuitism. "Children may kill their parents if they compel them to abandon the Catholic faith."
"Christian and Catholic sons," says Stephen Fagundez, "may accuse their fathers of the crime of heresy if they wish to turn them from the faith, although they may know that their parents will be burned with fire, and put to death for it, as Tolet teaches. . . . And not only may they refuse them food . . . but they may also justly kill them."*
It is well known that Nero, the Emperor, had never dared seek initiation into the Mysteries on account of the murder of Agrippina!
Under Section XIV. of the Principles of the Jesuits, we find on Homicide the following Christian principles inculcated by Father Henry Henriquez, in Summae Theologiae Moralis. Tomus 1, Venetiis, 1600 (Ed. Coll. Sion): "If an adulterer, even though he should be an ecclesiastic . . . being attacked by the husband, kills his aggressor . . . he is not considered irregular: non ridetur irregularis" (Lib. XIV., de Irregularitae, c. 10, § 3).
"If a father were obnoxious to the State (being in banishment), and to the society at large, and there were no other means of averting such an injury, then I should approve of this" (for a son to kill his father), says Sec. XV., on Parricide and Homicide.**
"It will be lawful for an ecclesiastic, or one of the religious order, to kill a calumniator who threatens to spread atrocious accusations against himself or his religion,"*** is the rule set forth by the Jesuit Francis Amicus.
* In "Praecepta Decalogi " (Edit. of Sion Library), Tom. i., lib. iv., c. 2, n. 7, 8.
** Opinion of John de Dicastille, Sect. xv., "De Justitia et Jure," etc., cens. pp. 319, 320.
*** "Cursus Theologici," Tomus v., Duaci, 1642, Disp. 36, Sect. 5, n. 118.
So far, good. We are informed by the highest authorities what a man in the Catholic communion may do that the common law and public morality stamp as criminal, and still continue in the odor of Jesuitical sanctity. Now suppose we again turn the medal and see what principles were inculcated by Pagan Egyptian moralists before the world was blessed with these modern improvements in ethics.
In Egypt every city of importance was separated from its burial place by a sacred lake. The same ceremony of judgment which the Book of the Dead describes as taking place in the world of Spirit, took place on earth during the burial of the mummy. Forty-two judges or assessors assembled on the shore and judged the departed "soul" according to its actions when in the body, and it was only upon a unanimous approval of this post-mortem jury that the boatman, who represented the Spirit of Death, could convey the justified defunct's body to its last resting-place. After that the priests returned within the sacred precincts and instructed the neophytes upon the probable solemn drama which was then taking place in the invisible realm whither the soul had fled. The immortality of the spirit was strongly inculcated by the Al-om-jah.* In the Crata Repoa** the following is described as the seven degrees of the initiation.
After a preliminary trial at Thebes, where the neophyte had to pass through many trials, called the "Twelve Tortures," he was commanded to govern his passions and never lose for a moment the idea of his God. Then as a symbol of the wanderings of the unpurified soul, he had to ascend several ladders and wander in darkness in a cave with many doors, all of which were locked. When he had overcome the dreadful trials, he received the degree of Pastopkoris, the second and third degrees being called the Neocoris, and the Melanephoris. Brought into a vast subterranean chamber thickly furnished with mummies lying in state, he was placed in presence of the coffin which contained the mutilated body of Osiris covered with blood. This was the hall called "Gates of Death," and it is most certainly to this mystery that the passages in the Book of Job (xxxviii. 17) and other portions of the Bible allude when these gates are spoken of.*** In chapter x., we give the esoteric interpretation of the "Book of Job," which is the poem of initiation par excellence.
"Have the gates of death been opened to thee?
Hast thou seen the doors of the shadow of death?"
* Name of the highest Egyptian hierophants.
** "Crata Repoa, or the Mysteries of the Ancient Egyptian Priests."
*** See Matthew xvi. 18, where it is mistranslated "the gates of Hell."
asks the "Lord" — i.e., the Al-om-jah, the Initiator — of Job, alluding to this third degree of initiation.
When the neophyte had conquered the terrors of this trial, he was conducted to the "Hall of Spirits," to be judged by them. Among the rules in which he was instructed, he was commanded "never to either desire or seek revenge; to be always ready to help a brother in danger, even unto the risk of his own life; to bury every dead body; to honor his parents above all; respect old age and protect those weaker than himself; and finally, to ever bear in mind the hour of death, and that of resurrection, in a new and imperishable body."* Purity and chastity were highly recommended, and adultery threatened with death.
Then the Egyptian neophyte was made a Kristophores. In this degree the mystery-name of IAO was communicated to him. The fifth degree was that of Balahala, and he was instructed by Horus, in alchemy, the "word" being chemia. In the sixth, the priestly dance in the circle was taught him, in which he was instructed in astronomy, for it represented the course of the planets. In the seventh degree, he was initiated into the final Mysteries. After a final probation in a building set apart for it, the Astronomus, as he was now called, emerged from these sacred apartments called Manneras, and received a cross — the Tau, which, at death, had to be laid upon his breast. He was a hierophant.
We have read above the rules of these holy initiates of the Christian Society of Jesus. Compare them with those enforced upon the Pagan postulant, and Christian (!) morality with that inculcated in those mysteries of the Pagans upon which all the thunders of an avenging Deity are invoked by the Church. Had the latter no mysteries of its own? Or were they in any wise purer, nobler, or more inciting to a holy, virtuous life? Let us hear what Niccolini has to say, in his able History of the Jesuits, of the modern mysteries of the Christian cloister.**
"In most monasteries, and more particularly in those of the Capuchins and reformed (reformati), there begins at Christmas a series of feasts, which continues till Lent. All sorts of games are played, the most splendid banquets are given, and in the small towns, above all, the refectory of the convent is the best place of amusement for the greater number of the inhabitants. At carnivals, two or three very magnificent entertainments take place; the board so profusely spread that one might imagine that Copia had here poured forth the whole contents of her horn. It must be remembered that these two orders live by alms.*** The sombre
* Humberto Malhandrini: "Ritual of Initiations," p. 105. Venice, 1657.
** Pages 43, 44, note f. Niccolini of Rome, author of "The History of the Pontificate of Pius IX."; "The Life of Father Gavazzi," etc.
*** And begged in the name of Him who had nowhere to lay his head!
silence of the cloister is replaced by a confused sound of merry-making, and its gloomy vaults now echo with other songs than those of the psalmist. A ball enlivens and terminates the feast; and, to render it still more animated, and perhaps to show how completely their vow of chastity has eradicated all their carnal appetite, some of the young monks appear coquettishly dressed in the garb of the fair sex, and begin the dance, along with others, transformed into gay cavaliers. To describe the scandalous scene which ensues would be but to disgust my readers. I will only say that I have myself often been a spectator at such saturnalia."
The cycle is moving down, and, as it descends, the physical and bestial nature of man develops more and more at the expense of the Spiritual Self.* With what disgust may we not turn from this religious farce called modern Christianity, to the noble faiths of old!
* In "Egypt's Place in Universal History," Bunsen gives the cycle of 21,000 years, which he adopts to facilitate the chronological calculations for the reconstruction of the universal history of mankind. He shows that this cycle "for the nutation of the ecliptic," arrived at its apex in the year 1240 of our era. He says:
"The cycle divides itself into two halves of 10,500 (or twice 5,250) years each.
"The beginning of the first half:
The highest point will be . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19,760 B. C.
The lowest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9,260
Consequently the middle of the descending line (beginning of second quarter) will be . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14,510
The middle of the ascending line (beginning of fourth quarter) 4,010
"The new cycle, which began in 1240 of our era, will come to the end of its first quarter in 4010 A.D."
The Baron explains that "in round numbers, the most favorable epochs for our hemisphere since the great catastrophe in Middle Asia (Deluge 10,000 years B.C.) are: "the 4,000 years before, and the 4,000 years after Christ; and the beginning of the first epoch, of which alone we can judge, as it alone is complete before us, coincides exactly with the beginnings of national history, or (what is identical) with the beginning of our consciousness of continuous existence" ("Egypt's Place in Universal History," Key, p. 102).
"Our consciousness" must mean, we suppose, the consciousness of scientists, who accept nothing on faith, but much on unverified hypotheses. We do not say this with reference to the above-quoted author, earnest scholar and noble champion that he is, of freedom in the Christian Church, but generally. Baron Bunsen has well found for himself that a man cannot remain an honest scientist and please the clerical party. Even the little concessions he made in favor of the antiquity of mankind, brought on him, in 1859, the most insolent denunciations, such as "We lose all faith in the author's judgment . . . he has yet to learn the very first principles of historical criticisms . . . extravagant and unscientific exaggeration," and so on — the pious vituperator closing his learned denunciations by assuring the public that Baron Bunsen "cannot even construct a Greek sentence ("Quarterly Review," 1859; see also "Egypt's Place in Universal History," chap. on Egyptological Works and English Reviews). But we do regret that Baron Bunsen had no better opportunity to examine the "Kabala" and the Brahmanical books of the Zodiacs.
In the Egyptian Funeral Ritual found among the hymns of the Book of the Dead, and which is termed by Bunsen "that precious and mysterious book," we read an address of the deceased, in the character of Horus, detailing all that he has done for his father Osiris. Among other things the deity says:
"30. I have given thee thy Spirit.
31. I have given thee thy Soul.
32. I have given thee thy force (body)," etc.
In another place the entity, addressed as "Father" by the disembodied soul, is shown to mean the "spirit" of man; for the verse says: "I have made my soul come and speak with his Father," its Spirit.*
The Egyptians regarded their Ritual as essentially a Divine inspiration; in short, as modern Hindus do the Vedas, and modern Jews their Mosaic books. Bunsen and Lepsius show that the term Hermetic means inspired; for it is Thoth, the Deity itself, that speaks and reveals to his elect among men the will of God and the arcana of divine things. Portions of them are expressly stated "to have been written by the very finger of Thoth himself"; to have been the work and composition of the great God.** "At a later period their Hermetic character is still more distinctly recognized, and on a coffin of the 26th Dynasty, Horus announces to the deceased that Thoth himself has brought him the books of his divine words, or Hermetic writings."***
Since we are aware that Moses was an Egyptian priest, or at least that he was learned in all their wisdom, we need not be astonished that he should write in Deuteronomy (ix. 10). "And the Lord delivered unto me two tables of stones written with the finger of GOD"; or to find in Exodus xxxi., "And he (the Lord) gave unto Moses . . . two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God."
In the Egyptian notions, as in those of all other faiths founded on philosophy, man was not merely, as with the Christians, a union of soul and body; he was a trinity when spirit was added to it. Besides, that doctrine made him consist of kha — body; khaba — astral form, or shadow; ka — animal soul or life-principle; ba — the higher soul; and akh — terrestrial intelligence. They had also a sixth principle named Sah — or mummy; but the functions of this one commenced only after the death of the body. After due purification, during which the soul, separated from its body, continued to revisit the latter in its mummified condition,
* "The Funeral Ritual of the Deeds of Horus."
** Bunsen: "Egypt's Place in Universal History," vol. v., p. 133.
*** Lepsius: "Abth.," iii.; Bl., 276; Bunsen, 134.
this astral soul "became a God," for it was finally absorbed into "the Soul of the world." It became transformed into one of the creative deities, "the god of Phtah,"* the Demiurgos, a generic name for the creators of the world, rendered in the Bible as the Elohim. In the Ritual the good or purified soul, "in conjunction with its higher or uncreated spirit, is more or less the victim of the dark influence of the dragon Apophis. If it has attained the final knowledge of the heavenly and the infernal mysteries — the gnosis, i.e., complete reunion with the spirit, it will triumph over its enemies; if not the soul could not escape its second death. It is 'the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone' (elements), into which those that are cast undergo a 'second death' "** (Apocalypse). This death is the gradual dissolution of the astral form into its primal elements, alluded to several times already in the course of this work. But this awful fate can be avoided by the knowledge of the "Mysterious Name" — the "Word,"*** say the kabalists.
And what then was the penalty attached to the neglect of it? When man leads a naturally pure, virtuous life, there is none whatever; except delay in the world of spirits, until he finds himself sufficiently purified to receive it from his Spiritual "Lord," one of the mighty Host. But if otherwise, the "soul," as a half animal principle, becomes paralyzed, and grows unconscious of its subjective half — the Lord — and in proportion to the sensuous development of the brain and nerves, sooner or later, it finally loses sight of its divine mission on earth. Like the Vourdalak, or Vampire, of the Servian tale, the brain feeds and lives and
* In the eighty-first chapter of the "Ritual" the soul is called the germ of lights and in the seventy-ninth the Demiurgos, or one of the creators.
** "Ritual," vi, 44; Champollion: "Manifestations to the Light"; Lepsius: "Book of the Dead"; Bunsen: "Egypt's Place in Universal History."
*** We cannot help quoting a remark by Baron Bunsen in relation to the "Word" being identical with the "Ineffable Name" of the Masons and the kabalists. While explaining the "Ritual," some of the details of which "resemble rather the enchantments of a magician than solemn rites, although a hidden and mystical meaning must have been attached to them" (the honest admission of this much, at least, is worth something), the author observes: "The mystery of names, the knowledge of which was a sovereign virtue, and which, at a later period, degenerated into the rank heresy (?) of the Gnostics and the magic of enchanters, appears to have existed not only in Egypt but elsewhere. Traces of it are found in the 'Cabala' . . . it prevailed in the Greek and Asiatic mythology" ("Egypt's Place, etc.," p. 147).
We then see the representatives of Science agreeing upon this one point, at least. The initiates of all countries had the same "mystery name." And now it remains with the scholars to prove that every adept, hierophant, magician, or enchanter (Moses and Aaron included) as well as every kabalist, from the institution of the Mysteries down to the present age, has been either a knave or a fool, for believing in the efficacy of this name.
grows in strength and power at the expense of its spiritual parent. Then the already half-unconscious soul, now fully intoxicated by the fumes of earthly life, becomes senseless, beyond hope of redemption. It is powerless to discern the splendor of its higher spirit, to hear the warning voice of its "guardian Angel," and its "God." It aims but at the development and fuller comprehension of natural, earthly life; and thus, can discover but the mysteries of physical nature. Its grief and fear, hope and joy, are all closely blended with its terrestrial existence. It ignores all that cannot be demonstrated by either its organs of action, or sensation. It begins by becoming virtually dead; it dies at last completely. It is annihilated. Such a catastrophe may often happen long years before the final separation of the life-principle from the body. When death arrives, its iron and clammy grasp finds work with life as usual; but there is no more a soul to liberate. The whole essence of the latter has been already absorbed by the vital system of the physical man. Grim death frees but a spiritual corpse; at best an idiot. Unable either to soar higher or awaken from lethargy, it is soon dissolved in the elements of the terrestrial atmosphere.
Seers, righteous men, who had attained to the highest science of the inner man and the knowledge of truth, have, like Marcus Antoninus, received instructions "from the gods," in sleep and otherwise. Helped by the purer spirits, those that dwell in "regions of eternal bliss," they have watched the process and warned mankind repeatedly. Skepticism may sneer; faith, based on knowledge and spiritual science, believes and affirms.
Our present cycle is preeminently one of such soul-deaths. We elbow soulless men and women at every step in life. Neither can we wonder, in the present state of things, at the gigantic failure of Hegel's and Schelling's last efforts at some metaphysical construction of a system. When facts, palpable and tangible facts of phenomenal Spiritualism happen daily and hourly, and yet are denied by the majority of "civilized" nations, little chance is there for the acceptance of purely abstract metaphysics by the ever-growing crowd of materialists.
In the book called by Champollion La Manifestation a la Lumiere, there is a chapter on the Ritual which is full of mysterious dialogues, with addresses to various "Powers" by the soul. Among these dialogues there is one which is more than expressive of the potentiality of the "Word." The scene is laid in the "Hall of the Two Truths." The "Door," the "Hall of Truth," and even the various parts of the gate, address the soul which presents itself for admission. They all forbid it entrance unless it tells them their mystery, or mystic names. What student of the Secret Doctrines can fail to recognize in these names an iden-
tity of meaning and purpose with those to be met with in the Vedas, the later works of the Brahmans, and the Kabala?
Magicians, Kabalists, Mystics, Neo-platonists and Theurgists of Alexandria, who so surpassed the Christians in their achievements in the secret science; Brahmans or Samaneans (Shamans) of old; and modern Brahmans, Buddhists, and Lamaists, have all claimed that a certain power attaches to these various names, pertaining to one ineffable Word. We have shown from personal experience how deeply the belief is rooted to this day in the popular mind all over Russia,* that the Word works "miracles" and is at the bottom of every magical feat. Kabalists mysteriously connect Faith with it. So did the apostles, basing their assertions on the words of Jesus, who is made to say: "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed . . . nothing shall be impossible unto you," and Paul, repeating the words of Moses, tells that "the WORD is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart; that is, the word of faith" (Romans x. 8). But who, except the initiates, can boast of comprehending its full significance?
In our days it is as it was in olden times, to believe in the biblical "miracles" requires faith; but to be enabled to produce them one's self demands a knowledge of the esoteric meaning of the "word." "If Christ," say Dr. Farrar and Canon Westcott, "wrought no miracles, then the gospels are untrustworthy." But even supposing that he did work them, would that prove that gospels written by others than himself are any more trustworthy? And if not, to what purpose is the argument? Besides, such a line of reasoning would warrant the analogy that miracles performed by other religionists than Christians ought to make their gospels trustworthy. Does not this imply at least an equality between the Christian Scriptures and the Buddhist sacred books? For these equally abound with phenomena of the most astounding character. Moreover, the Christians have no longer genuine miracles produced through their priests, for they have lost the Word. But many a Buddhist Lama or Siamese Talapoin — unless all travellers have conspired to lie — has been and now is able to duplicate every phenomenon described in the New Testament, and even do more, without any pretence of suspension of natural law or divine intervention either. In fact, Christianity proves that it is as dead in faith as it is dead in works, while Buddhism is full of vitality and supported by practical proofs.
The best argument in favor of the genuineness of Buddhist "miracles" lies in the fact that Catholic missionaries, instead of denying them or treating them as simple jugglery — as some Protestant missionaries do,
* See Chap. I., pp. 42, 43, note, of this volume.
have often found themselves in such straits as to be forced to adopt the forlorn alternative of laying the whole on the back of the Devil. And so belittled do the Jesuits feel themselves in the presence of these genuine servants of God, that with an unparalleled cunning, they concluded to act in the case of the Talapoins and Buddhists as Mahomet is said to have acted with the mountain. "And seeing that it would not move toward him, the Prophet moved himself toward the mountain." Finding that they could not catch the Siamese with the birdlime of their pernicious doctrines in Christian garb, they disguised themselves, and for centuries appeared among the poor, ignorant people as Talapoins, until exposed. They have even voted and adopted a resolution forthwith, which has now all the force of an ancient article of faith. "Naaman, the Syrian," say the Jesuits of Caen, "did not dissemble his faith when he bowed the knee with the king in the house of Rimmon; neither do the Fathers of the Society of Jesus dissemble, when they adopt the institute and the habit of the Talapoins of Siam" (nec dissimulant Patres S. J. Talapoinorum Siamensium institutum vestemque affectantes. — Position 9, 30 Jan., 1693).
The potency contained in the Mantras and the Vach of the Brahmans is as much believed in at this day as it was in the early Vedic period. The "Ineffable Name" of every country and religion relates to that which the Masons affirm to be the mysterious characters emblematic of the nine names or attributes by which the Deity was known to the initiates. The Omnific Word traced by Enoch on the two deltas of purest gold, on which he engraved two of the mysterious characters, is perhaps better known to the poor, uneducated "heathen" than to the highly accomplished Grand High Priests and Grand Z.'s of the Supreme Chapters of Europe and America. Only why the companions of the Royal Arch should so bitterly and constantly lament its loss, is more than we can understand. This word of M. M. is, as they will tell themselves, entirely composed of consonants. Hence, we doubt whether any of them could ever have mastered its pronunciation, had it even been "brought to light from the secret vault," instead of its several corruptions. However, it is to the land of Mizraim that the grandson of Ham is credited with having carried the sacred delta of the Patriarch Enoch. Therefore, it is in Egypt, and in the East alone that the mysterious "Word" must be sought.
But now that so many of the most important secrets of Masonry have been divulged by friend and foe, may we not say, without suspicion of malice or ill-feeling, that since the sad catastrophe of the Templars, no "Lodge" in Europe, still less in America, has ever known anything worth concealing. Reluctant to be misunderstood, we say no Lodge,
leaving a few chosen brethren entirely out of question. The frantic denunciations of the Craft by Catholic and Protestant writers appear simply ridiculous, as also the affirmation of the Abbe Barruel that everything "betrays our Freemasons as the descendants of those proscribed Knights" Templars of 1314. The Memoirs of Jacobinism by this Abbe, an eye-witness to the horrors of the first Revolution, is devoted in great measure to the Rosicrucians and other Masonic fraternities. The fact alone that he traces the modern Masons to the Templars, and points them out as secret assassins, trained to political murder, shows how little he knew of them, but how ardently he desired, at the same time, to find in these societies convenient scape-goats for the crimes and sins of another secret society which, since its existence, has harbored more than one dangerous political assassin — the Society of Jesus.
The accusations against Masons have been mostly half guess-work, half-unquenchable malice and predetermined vilification. Nothing conclusive and certain of a criminal character has been directly proven against them. Even their abduction of Morgan has remained a matter of conjecture. The case was used at the time as a political convenience by huckstering politicians. When an unrecognizable corpse was found in Niagara River, one of the chiefs of this unscrupulous class, being informed that the identity was exceedingly questionable, unguardedly exposed the whole plot by saying: "Well, no matter, he's a good enough Morgan until after the election!" On the other hand, we find the Order of the Jesuits not only permitting, in certain cases, but actually teaching and inciting to "High treason and Regicide."*
* See "The Principles of the Jesuits, Developed in a Collection of Extracts from their own Authors," London: J. G. and F. Rivington, St. Paul's Churchyard, and Waterloo Place, Pall Mall; H. Wix, 41 New Bridge Street, Blackfriars; J. Leslie, Queen Street, etc., 1839. Section xvii., "High Treason and Regicide," containing thirty-four extracts from the same number of authorities (of the Society of Jesus) upon the question, among others the opinion thereof of the famous Robert Bellarmine. So Emmanuel Sa says: "The rebellion of an ecclesiastic against a king, is not a crime of high treason, because he is not subject to the king" ("Confessarium Aphorismi Verbo Clericus," Ed. Coloniae, 1615, Ed. Coll. Sion). "The people," says John Bridgewater, "are not only permitted, but they are required and their duty demands, that at the mandate of the Vicar of Christ, who is the sovereign pastor over all nations of the earth, the faith which they had previously made with such princes should not be kept" ("Concertatio Ecclesiae Catholicae in Anglia adversus Calvino Papistas," Resp. fol. 348).
In "De Rege et Regis Institutione, Libri Tres," 1640 (Edit. Mus. Brit.), John Mariana goes even farther: "If the circumstances will permit," he says, "it will be lawful to destroy with the sword the prince who is declared a public enemy. . . . I shall never consider that man to have done wrong, who, favouring the public wishes, should attempt to kill him," and "to put them to death is not only lawful, but a laud- [[Footnote continued on next page]]
A series of Lectures upon Freemasonry and its dangers, as delivered in 1862, by James Burton Robertson, Professor of Modern History in the Dublin University, are lying before us. In them the lecturer quotes profusely as his authorities the said Abbe (Barruel, a natural enemy of the Masons, who cannot be caught at the confessional), and Robison, a well-known apostate-Mason of 1798. As usual with every party, whether belonging to the Masonic or anti-Masonic side, the traitor from the opposing camp is welcomed with praise and encouragement, and great care is taken to whitewash him. However convenient for certain political reasons the celebrated Committee of the Anti-Masonic Convention of 1830 (U. S. of America) may have found it to adopt this most Jesuitical proposition of Puffendorf that "oaths oblige not when they are absurd and impertinent," and that other which teaches that "an oath obliges not if God does not accept it,"* yet no truly honest man would accept such sophistry. We sincerely believe that the better portion of humanity will ever bear in mind that there exists a moral code of honor far more binding than an oath, whether on the Bible, Koran, or Veda. The Essenes never swore on anything at all, but their "ayes" and "nays" were as good and far better than an oath. Besides, it seems surpassingly strange to find nations that call themselves Christian instituting customs in civil and ecclesiastical courts diametrically opposed to the command of their God,* who distinctly forbids any swearing at all, "neither by heaven . . .
[[Footnote continued from previous page]] able and glorious action." Est tamen salutaris cogitatio, ut sit principibus persuasum si rempublicam oppresserint, si vitiis et faeditate intolerandi erunt, ea conditione vivere, ut non jure tantum, sed cum laude et gloria perimi possint" (Lib. i., c. 6, p. 61).
But the most delicate piece of Christian teaching is found in the precept of this Jesuit when he argues upon the best and surest way of killing kings and statesmen. "In my own opinion," he says, "deleterious drugs should not be given to an enemy, neither should a deadly poison be mixed with his food or in his cup . . . Yet it will indeed be lawful to use this method in the case in question (that he who should kill the tyrant would be highly esteemed, both in favor and in praise," for "it is a glorious thing to exterminate this pestilent and mischievous race from the community of men), not to constrain the person who is to be killed to take of himself the poison which, inwardly received, would deprive him of life, but to cause it to be outwardly applied by another without his intervention; as, when there is so much strength in the poison, that if spread upon a seat or on the clothes it would be sufficiently powerful to cause death" (Ibid., lib. i., c. f., p. 67). "It was thus that Squire attempted the life of Queen Elizabeth, at the instigation of the Jesuit Walpole." — Pasquier: "Catechisme des Jesuites" (1677, p. 350, etc.), and "Rapin" (fol., Lond., 1733, vol. ii., book xvii., p. 148).
* Puffendorf: "Droit de la Nat.," book iv., ch. 1.
** "Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, thou shalt not forswear thyself. . . . But I say unto you, swear not at all," etc. "But let your communication be yea, yea; nay, nay; for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil" (Matthew v. 33, 34, 37).
nor by the earth . . . nor by the head." It seems to us that to maintain that "an oath obliges not if God does not accept it," besides being an absurdity — as no man living, whether he be fallible or infallible, can learn anything of God's secret thoughts — is anti-Christian in the full sense of the word.* The argument is brought forward only because it is convenient and answers the object. Oaths will never be binding till each man will fully understand that humanity is the highest manifestation on earth of the Unseen Supreme Deity, and each man an incarnation of his God; and when the sense of personal responsibility will be so developed in him that he will consider forswearing the greatest possible insult to himself, as well as to humanity. No oath is now binding, unless taken by one who, without any oath at all, would solemnly keep his simple promise of honor. Therefore, to bring forward as authorities such men as Barruel or Robison is simply obtaining the public confidence under false pretenses. It is not the "spirit of Masonic malice whose heart coins slanders like a mint," but far more that of the Catholic clergy and their champions; and a man who would reconcile the two ideas of honor and perjury, in any case whatever, is not to be trusted himself.
Loud is the claim of the nineteenth century to preeminence in civilization over the ancients, and still more clamorous that of the churches and their sycophants that Christianity has redeemed the world from barbarism and idolatry. How little both are warranted, we have tried to prove in these two volumes. The light of Christianity has only served to show how much more hypocrisy and vice its teachings have begotten in the world since its advent, and how immensely superior were the ancients over us in every point of honor.** The clergy, by teaching the helplessness of man, his utter dependence on Providence, and the doctrine of atonement, have crushed in their faithful followers every atom of self-reliance and self-respect. So true is this, that it is becoming an axiom that the most honorable men are to be found among atheists and the so-called "infidels." We hear from Hipparchus that in the days of heathenism "the shame and disgrace that justly attended the violation of his oath threw the poor wretch into a fit of madness and despair, so that he cut his throat and perished by his own hands, and his memory was so abhorred after his death that his body lay upon the shore of the island of Samos, and had no other burial than the sands of the sea."*** But in our own
* Barbeyrac, in his notes on Puffendorf, shows that the Peruvians used no oath, but a simple averment before the Inca, and were never found perjuring themselves.
** We beg the reader to remember that we do not mean by Christianity the teachings of Christ, but those of his alleged servants — the clergy.
*** Dr. Anderson's "Defence," quoted by John Yarker in his "Notes on the Scientific and Religious Mysteries of Antiquity."
century we find ninety-six delegates to the United States Anti-Masonic Convention, every one doubtless a member of some Protestant Church, and claiming the respect due to men of honor and gentlemen, offering the most Jesuitical arguments against the validity of a Masonic oath. The Committee, pretending to quote the authority of "the most distinguished guides in the philosophy of morals, and claiming the most ample support of the inspired* . . . who wrote before Freemasonry existed," resolved that, as an oath was "a transaction between man on one part and the Almighty Judge on the other," and the Masons were all infidels and "unfit for civil trust," therefore their oaths had to be considered illegal and not binding.**
But we will return to these Lectures of Robertson and his charges against Masonry. The greatest accusation brought against the latter is that Masons reject a personal God (this on the authority of Barruel and Robison), and that they claim to be in possession of a "secret to make men better and happier than Christ, his apostles and his Church have made them." Were the latter accusation but half true, it might yet allow the consoling hope that they had really found that secret by breaking off entirely from the mythical Christ of the Church and the official Jehovah. But both the accusations are simply as malicious as they are absurd and untrue; as we shall presently see.
Let it not be imagined that we are influenced by personal feeling in any of our reflections upon Masonry. So far from this being the case we unhesitatingly proclaim our highest respect for the original purposes of the Order and some of our most valued friends are within its membership. We say naught against Masonry as it should be, but denounce it as, thanks to the intriguing clergy, both Catholic and Protestant, it now begins to be. Professedly the most absolute of democracies, it is practically the appanage of aristocracy, wealth, and personal ambition. Professedly the teacher of true ethics, it is debased into a propaganda of anthropomorphic theology. The half-naked apprentice, brought before the master during the initiation of the first degree, is taught that at the door of the lodge every social distinction is laid aside, and the poorest brother is the peer of every other, though a reigning sovereign or an imperial prince. In practice, the Craft turns lickspittle in every monarchical country, to any regal scion who may deign, for the sake of using it as a political tool, to put on the once symbolical lambskin.
How far gone is the Masonic Fraternity in this direction, we can judge
* Epiphanius included, we must think, after that, in violation of his oath, he had sent over seventy persons into exile, who belonged to the secret society he betrayed.
** United States Anti-Masonic Convention: "Obligation of Masonic Oaths," speech delivered by Mr. Hopkins, of New York.
from the words of one of its highest authorities. John Yarker, Junior, of England; Past Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge of Greece; Grand Master of the Rite of Swedenborg; also Grand Master of the Ancient and Primitive Rite of Masonry, and Heaven only knows what else,* says that Masonry could lose nothing by "the adoption of a higher (not pecuniary) standard of membership and morality, with exclusion from the 'purple' of all who inculcate frauds, sham, historical degrees, and other immoral abuses" (page 158). And again, on page 157: "As the Masonic Fraternity is now governed, the Craft is fast becoming the paradise of the bon vivant; of the 'charitable' hypocrite, who forgets the version of St. Paul, and decorates his breast with the 'charity jewel' (having by this judicious expenditure obtained the 'purple' he metes out judgment to other brethren of greater ability and morality but less means); the manufacturer of paltry Masonic tinsel; the rascally merchant who swindles in hundreds, and even thousands, by appealing to the tender consciences of those few who do regard their O. B.'s; and the Masonic 'Emperors' and other charlatans who make power or money out of the aristocratic pretensions which they have tacked on to our institution — ad captandum vulgus."
We have no wish to make a pretence of exposing secrets long since hawked about the world by perjured Masons. Everything vital, whether in symbolical representations, rites, or passwords, as used in modern Freemasonry, is known in the Eastern fraternities; though there seems to be no intercourse or connection between them. If Medea is described by Ovid as having "arm, breast, and knee made bare, left foot slipshod"; and Virgil, speaking of Dido, shows this "Queen herself . . . now resolute on death, having one foot bare, etc.,"** why doubt that there are in the East real "Patriarchs of the sacred Vedas," explaining the esotericism of pure Hindu theology and Brahmanism quite as thoroughly as European "Patriarchs"?
But, if there are a few Masons who, from study of kabalistic and other rare works, and coming in personal communication with "Brothers" from the far-away East, have learned something of esoteric Masonry, it is not the case with the hundreds of American Lodges. While engaged on this chapter, we have received most unexpectedly, through the kindness of a friend, a copy of Mr. Yarker's volume, from which passages are quoted above. It is brimful of learning and, what is more, of knowledge, as it
* John Yarker, Junr.: "Notes on the Scientific and Religious Mysteries of Antiquity; the Gnosis and Secret Schools of the Middle Ages; Modern Rosicrucianism; and the various Rites and Degrees of Free and Accepted Masonry." London, 1872.
** Ibid., p. 151.
seems to us. It is especially valuable at this moment, since it corroborates, in many particulars, what we have said in this work. Thus, we read in it the following:
"We think we have sufficiently established the fact of the connection of Freemasonry with other speculative rites of antiquity, as well as the antiquity and purity of the old English Templar-Rite of seven degrees, and the spurious derivation of many of the other rites therefrom."*
Such high Masons need not be told, though Craftsmen in general do, that the time has come to remodel Masonry, and restore those ancient landmarks, borrowed from the early sodalities, which the eighteenth century founders of speculative Freemasonry meant to have incorporated in the fraternity. There are no longer any secrets left unpublished; the Order is degenerating into a convenience for selfish men to use, and bad men to debase.
It is but recently that a majority of the Supreme Councils of the Ancient and Accepted Rite assembled at Lausanne, justly revolting against such a blasphemous belief as that in a personal Deity, invested with all human attributes, pronounced the following words: "Freemasonry proclaims, as it has proclaimed from its origin, the existence of a creative principle, under the name of the great Architect of the universe." Against this, a small minority has protested, urging that "belief in a creative principle is not the belief in God, which Freemasonry requires of every candidate before he can pass its very threshold."
This confession does not sound like the rejection of a personal God. Could we have had the slightest doubt upon the subject, it would be thoroughly dispelled by the words of General Albert Pike,** perhaps the greatest authority of the day, among American Masons, who raises himself most violently against this innovation. We cannot do better than quote his words:
"This Principe Createur is no new phrase — it is but an old term revived. Our adversaries, numerous and formidable, will say, and will have the right to say, that our Principe Createur is identical with the Principe Genateur of the Indians and Egyptians, and may fitly be symbolized as it was symbolized anciently, by the Lingae. . . . To accept this, in lieu of a personal God, is TO ABANDON CHRISTIANITY, and the worship of Jehovah, and return to wallow in the styes of Paganism."
* John Yarker: "Notes, etc.," p. 150.
** Proceedings of the Supreme Council of Sovereign Grand Inspectors-General of the Thirty-third and Last Degree, etc., etc. Held at the city of New York, August 15, 1876," pp. 54, 55.
Chapter 8, part 2