The evolution of this Lemurian race, therefore, constitutes one of the most obscure, as well as one of the most interesting, chapters of man's development, for during this period not only did he reach true humanity, but his body underwent the greatest physical changes, while the processes of reproduction were twice altered.
In explanation of the surprising statements which will have to be made in regard to the size and consistency of man's body at this early period it must be remembered that while the animal, vegetable and mineral kingdoms pursued the normal course, on this the fourth globe, during the Fourth Round of this Manvantara, it was ordained that humanity should run over in rapid succession the various stages through which its evolution had passed during the previous rounds of the present Manvantara. Thus the bodies of the First Root Race in which these almost mindless beings were destined to gain experience, would have appeared to us as gigantic phantoms--if indeed we could have seen them at all, for their bodies were formed of astral matter. The astral forms of the First Root Race were then gradually enveloped in a more physical casing. But though the Second Root Race may be called physical--their bodies being composed of ether--they would have been equally invisible to eyesight as it at present exists.
It was, we are told, in order that the Mann, and the Beings who aided him, might take means for improving the physical type
of humanity that this epitome of the process of evolution was ordained. The highest development which the type had so far reached was the huge ape-like creature which had existed on the three physical planets, Mars, the Earth and Mercury in the Third Round. On the arrival of the human life-wave on the Earth in this the Fourth Round, a certain number, naturally, of these apelike creatures were found in occupation--the residuum left on the planet during its period of obscuration. These, of course, joined the in-coming human stream as soon as the race became fully physical. Their bodies may not then have been absolutely discarded; they may have been utilized for purposes of reincarnation for the most backward entities, but it was an improvement on this type which was required, and this was most easily achieved by the Manu, through working out on the astral plane in the first instance, the architype originally formed in the mind of the Logos.
From the Etheric Second Race, then, was evolved the Third--the Lemurian. Their bodies had become material, being composed of the gases, liquids and solids which constitute the three lowest sub-divisions of the physical plane, but the gases and liquids still predominated, for as yet their vertebrate structure had not solidified into bones such as ours, and they could not, therefore, stand erect. Their bones in fact were pliable as the bones of young infants now are. It was not until the middle of the Lemurian period that man developed a solid bony structure.
To explain the possibility of the process by which the etheric form evolved into a more physical form, and the soft-boned physical form ultimately developed into a structure such as man possesses to-day, it is only necessary to refer to the permanent physical atom. 1 Containing as it does the essence of all the forms through which
man has passed on the physical plane, it contained consequently the potentiality of a hard-boned physical structure such as had been attained during the course of the Third Round, as well as the potentiality of an etheric form and all the phases which lie between, for it must be remembered that the physical plane consists of four grades of ether as well as the gases, liquids and solids which so many are apt to regard as alone constituting the physical. Thus, every stage of the development was a natural process, for it was a process which had been accomplished in ages long past, and all that was needed was for the Manu and the Beings who aided him, to gather round the permanent atom the appropriate kind of matter.
21:1 For a further account of the permanent atoms on all the planes, and the potentialities contained in them with reference to the processes of death and re-birth, see "Man's Place in Universe." pp. 76-80.