Mysteries of the Qabalah, by Elias Gewurz, , at sacred-texts.com
There is no death, there is no destruction, all is but change and transformation, first the caterpillar, then the chrysalis, then the beautiful butterfly. Likewise, first physical man, then the mighty mind, and at last a noble soul.
In the days of old, when physical force was the chief arbiter between man and man, those that loved knowledge were compelled to abandon the affairs of this world and to retire to the forests and hills in order to pursue their studies. They could never maintain their position among fighting and cruel tyrants, and were obliged to live solitary lives, contenting themselves with a few morsels of bread to satisfy their hunger and plain water to quench their thirst. They slept on the bare earth and from early morning till late at night they meditated and studied and prayed. These were the Gnanis and Bhaktas of the past. Nowadays there are schools and colleges and societies and institutions where the ancient wisdom can be studied quite comfortably in easy chairs, with the use of electric light and central heating systems to keep us oblivious to the hardships of the outside world.
In themselves these blessings of modern
civilization are quite harmless, but in an indirect manner they do injure us. The pure consciousness of man is not enriched by study per se, and the increase of knowledge is not the highest aim of man, it is only if knowledge is made subservient to love that it fulfills its mission. Therefore when the acquisition of learning is made possible in the midst of comforts, and even luxury, the danger always exists of hardening the mind and making it miss the beautiful lessons of charity, forgiveness and forbearance, while those who are trained by hardships and have to learn their lessons on empty or half-filled stomachs are more accessible to the appeals of suffering and want. Consequently the deprivations which the poor students had to undergo in olden times taught them as much (if not more) as their books, whereas the well-off students of today are ever in peril of losing their souls while enlarging their minds.
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The Brotherhood of the White Lodge is a body of great men whose souls have been made perfect through suffering, they watch over humanity from their exalted planes on
which their spiritual status enables them to live and pour down upon it knowledge and wisdom, and skill in the arts and crafts according as the world's Karma permits them to do so.
They are always affiliated to those organizations on earth whose members are single-minded, and true hearted and genuinely desirous of the welfare of the race. Especially are they interested in the advancement of science, philosophy and religion, and all public bodies promoting these subjects are helped (without knowing whence the help cometh) by the Brotherhood of the White Lodge. For the last three decades there has been a steady and growing increase of knowledge in all departments of human activity. Inventions have multiplied, and discoveries of unsuspected laws of nature are being made on every hand. Philosophic and scientific thought has never been so abundant and so brilliant as it is today, but the receivers of the gifts know not the givers, and often frustrate the gracious purposes which were to be served by the bestowal of the gifts.
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The reason is not far to seek, it is to be found in the heart of man where is the spring of all actions. To serve faithfully the Masters of Wisdom, the givers of all good gifts, the heart must be pure and the whole nature must have been regenerated, but this is a process of slow growth and requires the subdual of the personality and the crushing of the lower nature. It is only those in whom personality has been suppressed who can be made perfect channels for the eternal truths; as long as the snake is alive, man can only be an inferior instrument of nature. When the old Adam dies and the snake has given up its ghost then can man become a servant of the great Lords and co-operate with them here on earth. Therefore it often happens that those that are to be honored by the King of Kings and Lord of Lords must first be slaves and servants and learn to obey before they are allowed to command. Thus in modern times disciples are thrown into all sorts of trials and sorrows.
Poverty, disease, and friendlessness, they must know them all, until the last vestige of pride and aloofness has disappeared from
their mental make up. . . . So it comes to it that like the poverty stricken Gnanis and the Bhaktas of old, the refined students of today have likewise to undergo the same training if they are to be fitted as Messengers of the White Lodge. They must taste the bitterness of the cup unto the very dregs, and through their own sufferings learn to sympathize with those of others.
This is the straight and narrow way which leadeth unto life eternal.
This is the working of the white law, the operations of which are often so puzzling to the eyes of flesh.
It is only our own blindness and the narrowness of our own life that makes us find fault with the law, which is both wise and good.
What we see in the outer life of an individual is but an infinitesimal particle of what is going on within him. The interior life of the soul is the reality that matters, and it is here that the work of redemption of every soul is going on.
Whenever the outer life is clouded, the inner is touched, and this method is resorted to by the Brotherhood of the White Lodge
to train their disciples on the earth plane.
The ancient sages came from the poorest families, and the prophets of the future will have to be saved from the gutter before they can deliver their message.
It behooves, therefore, those who are anxious to do the Master's will to be mindful of these facts. The White Lodge has its representatives on earth, its messengers and teachers, and pupils; what we see of all these is only as much as we deserve to see. Let us beware of putting a stumbling block in the path of even the least of these, lest in so doing we be found among those who work against the good law and against the will of its blessed custodiansThe Brotherhood of the White Lodge.