Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Lost Light - Alvin Boyd Kuhn

Here is a chapter from Alvin Boyd Kuhn's book "Lost Light" -

Chapter VI


THE rectification of misguided rendering of holy writ in its entirety
is a work of great magnitude and will tax severely the capacity of a
single book. Particularly in regard to the traditional dogmas of the-
ology, where misconception has become embedded in set habitudes of
mind, the reinterpretation can be established only by the presentation
of material in overwhelming quantity. The bare statement of the main
theses of the venerable philosophy would be met with contempt or
arrogant rejection. The claims must therefore be buttressed by a mass
of irrefutable data. This material has not been marshaled for this use
before in anything like organic array.

The story most properly begins with what is called in theology "the
descent of the gods." Traditional lore is replete with legends of the
"expulsion of the angels," "the fall of Lucifer and his hosts," "the fall
from heaven," and the more philosophical "descent of the soul." These
phrase-titles relate to the first step in the series of pre-historical and
even pre-mundane episodes which culminated in the establishment of
humanity on earth and the fabrication of human nature combining
both a natural and a supernatural element. The substrate datum in
religion is that man is an animal and a god in union. There were ani-
mals on earth and angels in heaven; and the counsels of cosmic intel-
ligence decreed that the angels should join forces with the animals and
be their gods. The conjunctive experience would educate both parties.
The effort to overcome matter's inertia and the sense urge of the flesh
would develop more dynamic spiritual initiative for the gods. They
would be forced to deploy more of their potential and as yet static
divine power to gain mastery over the elementary forces of the physi-
cal world.

Hints are not wanting in the old scripts to show that their obliga-
tion to leave their home of blissful rest in dreamy sub-consciousness in
the ethereal spheres and suffer the hardships of earth life in gross ani-
mal bodies was in some part at least a measure of karmic retribution
for past dereliction elsewhere. Pride and insolence are ascribed to them
by Greek theology. Violated oaths and "Moira's bounds transgressed"
are alluded to by the philosophic poets. As evolution links penalty with
readjustment and forward progress, it is not difficult to admit the play
of both retributive and normal procedure in the enforced descent of
minor deities to our globe. It is the expulsion of Satan and his hosts
from heaven in Paradise Lost and Revelation. So presented, it has been
taken either as a mythical unreality or an inscrutable chapter of celes-
tial history, and discarded from serious consideration in religious sys-
tematism. It is, however, the central situation and must be restored to
its pivotal place of consequence in the picture. The doctrine of the
"descent" is crucial for the interpretation. True or false, it is what the
scriptures are building their narratives upon.

Of the original twelve legions of deities, ten have plunged into the
stream o incarnation and are now passing through the experiences
incident thereto. At the conclusion of the venture, after many incarna-
tions for each individual member, they will return to their celestial
abodes, transfigured and further divinized. The allegory of the Prodi-
gal Son is a short glyph or graph of this evolutionary descent and
return. There is hardly a religious book of any ancient nation that does
not deal more or less directly with that event.

To see the "descent" as an integral function of cosmic process and
not as a calamitous "fall," it is quite necessary to expound a portion of
Orphic-Platonic cosmogony.

The beginning must be made where creation itself begins. It starts
from Unity. All things proceed from what was aboriginally and ever
ultimately is, the One Life. The pagan name for the Supreme Power
was commonly The One. All things ultimately resolve into the pri-
mordial One, since they emanate from that One in the beginning. Be-
fore manifestation takes place, Being is homogeneous, undifferentiated.
It is uniform similitude and excludes dissimilitude. It is all One Es-
sence, alike in every part, if parts there are.

But in such state it is unrnanifest, and from our point of view un-
conscious, asleep, inert. The Hindu term is Pralaya, And out of
Pralaya it must awake, for it sleeps only in alternate turn with waking
activity, as do all its creatures made in its likeness. It passes, like them,
from death to life and back again, in eternal routine.

To awake and come into being it must by force of logic perform an
operation upon its own nature which is the first ground of manifesta-
tion. It can not create a universe in which to live and suffer experience
without breaking its Unity apart into duality. For it must become
Consciousness on the one side, in order to ~know what and how to
create, and Matter on the other, if it is to have material with which to
create! So it must split its primal Oneness into a dualism which how-
ever is still subsumed under the unity. It becomes two in one or the
One in two. The One has not become Two, but a twoness.

It virtually can not create without throwing itself into the condition
of being at a tension between two aspects of itself, on the strength of
which tension it can exert its inchoate energies. It must therefore mani-
fest itself as the two ends of a polarity, positive and negative. It must
become polarized in relation to itself; and so it takes on the double-
aspected characterization of spirit and matter, male and female, con-
sciousness and vehicle, function and instrument, attraction and repul-
sion, visible and invisible, real and actual. Positively, like the proton of
the atom, it must stand stably in the center, governing, holding, regu-
lating the cyclical whirl of negative force about its eternal rock of dura-
bility. Negatively, like the electrons, it must revolve in the periodic
swing of active life. It must provide the dual grounds for living ex-
istence, a conscious nucleus presiding at the heart of moving, changing
embodiments. It must become, out of itself, subject, knowing, and
object, to be known. Its entire purpose is obviously to arise out of un-
conscious slumber and become ever more awake and more concretely
conscious. Since there is nothing of which it can be conscious save
itself, the aim of Life is thus ever to become more Self-conscious!
Therefore it must, so to speak, set itself as object over against itself as
subject, and down the ages and the cycles ever thus contemplate
itself. It is the seeing eye and the thing seen, as all profound esoteric
philosophy asserts.

As Genesis puts it, God effected his creation, gazed upon it with
gratification and pronounced it good. To see his creation he had to
objectify, hypostasize, reify his thoughts, the radiations of his subjec-
tive aspect. For he creates by thoughts. He must see his ideas form in
concretion before him, take on material body and come to visible
manifestation for himself and his creatures.

So his expression proceeds from unity to duality, and from duality
it runs further outward to infinite multiplicity. Multiple manifestation
is, achieved by the operation of a principle which is easily compre-
hended. As life has split into spirit and matter, the one mobile, the
other inert, the unity of the mobile is broken up into multitude as it
moves against the immobile. The lighter essence, spirit, is broken and
divided as it moves outward against the resistance of matter. A sug-
gestive illustration is the infinite division of a body of water dropped
as one unit from a height as it falls against the resistance of the air. Its
sheer motion and speed throws it apart. The circulation of the blood
from the central heart, dividing endlessly till it reaches the periphery in
numberless streamlets, is a similar reflection of the universal law. Out-
ward bound, it divides; on the return it reunites! Life descends, "falls,"
from the summit of its primal unity down into the arms of matter,
dividing as it goes. Division is a logical necessity if it is to multiply
itself, for unity can not multiply out of itself without first dividing
itself. And it can not divide itself unless it falls or descends against re-
sistance. The importance of this determination for clear grasp of basic
theology can not be overstressed. Angels "fall" by divine ordinance,
and not by literal folly of rebellion against deity. Evolutionary gravity
brings them down from heaven to earth.

The wind does not commonly blow a steady gale, but conies in
rhythmic puffs. Creative impulse acts similarly. Every cycle of energi-
zation of the universe finishes its work in seven waves or impulses,
and the sub-cycles have also seven waves. Life projects its formative
energies outward, or matterward, in surge after surge. Each one carries
the impulse as far as it will go under its original force, or until the
wave is brought to a dead standstill by the inertia of matter, the carry-
ing and resisting medium. Each propulsion of power comes to a stop,
locked in the embrace of matter. In this embrace the capacities of the
two nodes of being interplay, fecundate each other, generate a growth
of new life, and build up what is termed a plane or level or kingdom
of nature, with creatures embodying the type of life there engendered.
Thus there are terrestrial and celestial worlds (as Paul says), noumenal
and phenomenal realms, physical and ethereal planes, material and
spiritual bodies, heavens, fairy-lands, underworlds, hells, limbos, Isles
o the Blessed, Elysian Fields, the meadows of Aarru-Hetep and homes
on high. And the beings on the ranges from high divinity down to
man are the gods of ancient mythology.

The capacities of life on each level are expressed and given play by
the organic beings built up thereon. Thus each kingdom has its own
specific nature and determinations. But life is not static; it is genera-
tive, reproductive, forward-moving. It creates anew, in its turn, at its
level, and passes the stream of creative force on down the line. Thus
the succession of waves of projection runs down the scale, each one
carrying the formative force one surge farther out. On and on it goes,
establishing the kingdoms of nature and the living citizens on them.
The contiguous planes form a link of connection from top to bottom
of the series, and this is the golden chain of life. And each level bears
a definite relation to its neighbor on either side.

The explication of this relationship involves a law that is basic for
all evolution. Its statement will render understandable the constitution
of man. It tells why he is a soul and a body linked together. It may be
called the great Law of Incubation.

Under its terms each plane is mother to the life on the plane above
it and father to that of the plane below it. It receives from above the
seed germs of higher life and harbors them in the womb of its soil,
or matter, gestates them and eventually gives them their new birth.
This is the function of motherhood. And matter (Latin mater,
mother) is the universal mother. But, having received from above, it
also gives the impulse to the order below; and as giver it is active, ag-
gressive, generative the father function. Feminine to life above, mas-
culine to life beneath, it is the link and bridge between two worlds.

But at each step of transmission the primal impulse suffers a dimi-
nution of its impetus, a weakening of its force, and in consequence a
further and further fragmentation. The matter of each plane on the
downward or involutionary track being more dense in atomic struc-
ture than that of its superior, the living bodies it provides can not bear
as heavy a life charge as the beings above can support, and the voltage
of power must be stepped down if it is to be incorporated fittingly in
the less capacious bodies of a lower kingdom. To effect this reduction
in dynamism the bodies carrying the life of each plane act as electric
transformers, changing a high current into numerous lesser currents
to be accommodated to the lower carrying capabilities of bodies on the
plane beneath. Hence the unit charge received from the plane above by
each life structure on any plane must, in falling one step further down-
ward, be again broken up into a large number of fragments, each of
which will become the energizing soul of a lower body. The Greek
philosophers say in this connection that "the gods distribute divinity,' 5
scattering its higher units abroad from plane to plane, the units mul-
tiplying in number, but diminishing in power, as the stream flows on.
This is what ancient theology connotes by "the river of life." The
Orphic system speaks of "rivers of vivification," which, they say, "pro-
ceed from on high as far as to the last of things," or to the lowest
stratum of the mineral kingdom. And as the gods distribute divinity,
the secondary ranks in each case are said to "participate according to
their capacity." The gods pour out their life for the vivifying of all
lower beings, and the latter partake of this bounty or "grace" to the
measure of their receptivity. Nothing other than this is meant by the
"shed blood" of the gods, given for the life of the worlds. All old the-
ologies aver that the blood of the gods, or of God, mixed with the clay
of earth, makes the "red earth" which is given as the etymological sig-
nification of Adam in Hebrew, i.e., man. Man is compounded of the
red life-blood of deity and the dust of the ground, which in Hebrew
is Adamah, purely the feminine or material aspect of Adam, spirit,
itself. Deity mixed together spirit and matter to make man.

One more step in the analysis yields the final phase of the Law of
Incubation. If life is to be propagated in eternal renewal, in multiplied
individualization, it becomes necessary for any living creature on each
plane to produce a multiple progeny of the seeds of its own life and
"plant" or bury them in the soil of the kingdom immediately below
it. There they go first to their "death," after which they are reborn or
resurrected in the sprouting of the seeds and their growth back to
maturity. Each generation lives anew in its regeneration, but multi-
plied by as many times itself as the number of seeds it produced and
successfully germinated in the plane below.

The vegetable buries its seeds in the soil of the kingdom beneath it,
the mineral The animal's life is embodied in a corpus built up of
vegetable material taken in each day as food. The human is rooted in
an animal body. And now comes the pivotal fact in theology. The
lowest ranks of gods, in their position just above humanity, must, by
the Law of Incubation, send down their seeds, plant (incarnate) them
in the bodies of humans, and win their next cyclical generation o di-
vine life in that ground! Centuries of theological maundering have not
told the millions of hungry sheep this plain truth as to why man nur-
tures a winged spirit of intelligence a soul in his physical body. The
soul of man is in his body as a seed of divinity planted, buried, gone
to its "death" in the soil of the human kingdom, and bears the same
relation to that soil as does any seed to its bed. The greatest truth that
can be told to mortals is that their bodies are each the gestating womb
of a god. As said St. Paul, the Christ is being "formed within" each
mortal body. Man has a soul because his physical human self is the
nursery or breeding ground of the seeds of divinity. And man's
divinity is, or begins as, a seed. His duty is to cultivate the growth of
that deific embryo. It is gestating in the womb of his physical body,
and he must, as said Socrates, become a philosophic "midwife" and aid
in its birth. Plato reports the Demiurgus in the notable speech to the
legions of devas in the Timaeus as saying that "whatever is immortal
and divine" in the human makeup, "of that I will furnish the seed and
the beginning. It is your business to do the rest; to weave together mor-
tal and immortal natures." The upper plane furnishes the seeds of god-
hood, the lower furnishes the soil or garden. Divinity is planted in "the
garden of the world." It is the seminal soul of divine mind, destined
to germinate and eventually blossom in the ground of humanity.

If, in sum, God is to multiply himself, his tree of life must reproduce
on its branches a numerous progeny, each child bearing the potentiality
of renewing the parent life in its fullness, and of carrying its eternal
unfoldment one step ahead. As no living thing can subsist save as a
result of a linking together of spirit and matter, a germinal unit of
spirit must be incubated as the god in a body of material structure.
This divine economy gives every creature its soul, which is its god.
In the long chain of linked lives, from God down to mineral crystal,
no being is deprived of its possibility of immediate communion with
deity, up to the border of its capacity. But the "arm of the Lord" that
is potent to bless and to save is within, not without. It is Emanuel,
God with us, the hope of our glory. God is everywhere, within and
without; but his son, the Christos, is only within. If he is not sought
there, he will not be found. His inner presence is the provision of life
that no entity should be bereft of instant contact with its parent god,
who dwells on the plane just over its head, though rooted in its very
body. Man's deity is not a personage in a distant land and time, but,
as an Eastern saga puts it, "closer is he than breathing, nearer than
hands and feet." No man can fail of touching his divinity, but failure
of his knowledge that his deity is in himself may palsy his effort to
arouse its latent faculties.

A legend of India tells of a council of the gods at which it was pur-
posed to invest man with deity. A debate arose as to how it might be
entrusted to him without his misusing it. One suggested that it be
buried in the depths of the sea, so that he would not easily find and
abuse it. Another advised placing it on the most inaccessible mountain
top. Finally the supreme head of the assembly declared he had thought
of a place where no man would ever think of looking for it, in the
deepmost chambers of man's own heart!

The basal truth that every living thing is a union of spirit and mat-
ter, soul and body, was put in a graph by the Egyptians. It is perhaps
the oldest and most meaningful of signs. The great symbol carried in
the hands of the gods was the Ankh, or crux ansata (ansated cross),
a "T" topped with the circle. The circle is the female symbol, the
boundless infinite matter, the mother of all things in endless round.
The vertical line is the male symbol, a ray of intelligence that goes out
from the heart of the universe to impregnate the worlds. The horizon-
tal line is the line of division between the two, at the point where they
are joined. It is the cross-line between them. The word Ankh means
three most significant things: love, lije and tie. It is a formula of all
life, signifying that life is the resultant of a tying together of two
things, spirit and matter, by the force of an attraction, which is love.

The great doctrine of the "descent" or "fall" can now be clearly en-
visaged. Deity, in the form of its seed potency, must descend from its
own plane into the soil of the plane below it and be incubated there.
It must leave its own home, its father's house, and go out into another
country, where it will be an exile and a stranger. And like the youth
going out from home into a rough world to make a fight of it under
temptation and gross influences, he must undergo a long toilsome trial
and testing and crucifixion to become an eventual victor and return
with laurels. Said Jesus: "I came forth from the Father and am come
into the world.' 1

Additional elucidation of basic meaning flows from the consideration
of the great doctrine of the Trinity in theology. One is not too bold
in asserting that this formula of ancient truth is not comprehended in
its clear and profound significance by the Church which still blindly
offers it. Once a year the pew occupants listen to a sermon on the
Trinity, but go away unenlightened. Yet it is the heart of the mystery
of life, the base of theology, and easily comprehensible.

Plotinus, the Neo-Platonist of the third century, who gave the doc-
trine to Christianity through Augustine, has given us an analogy with
a natural phenomenon by which it is possible, with the additional link
of a finding of modern science, to see the simple meaning of a doctrine
that has baffled comprehension for sixteen centuries. He said that we
can understand how one deity can have three aspects if we think of the
sun, its light and its active energy. The sun in heaven is comparable
to the Father of the Trinity. It is a glowing globe of fire. The fire of
the sun does not go forth into the ends of space, but abides at home.
Like a match which you strike in a dark room, the fire stays on the
match; it does not leave it. The fire stays; but it generates and sends
forth its son, the light. This is the second aspect or "person." It is of
the same essence with the Father, yet not he. And the Psalmist sings:
"Send out thy light"!

Now a flood of clear light is released on the problem by following
the implications as to the identity of the third "person," the Holy
Spirit. But here it is necessary to adduce some pertinent data which is
given to us by modern physical science to round out our analogy. We
are told that a ray of the sun's light out in the void of space (not near
a planet) is inert. It is both cold and dark. If one could reduce one's
body to the size of a pin-point, one would be in total darkness and the
^intensest cold, though the sun be glaring overhead. The ray is im-
potent, inactive, uncreative and can generate no life until and here
is the nub of all philosophy it falls upon a surface of a material body,
a globe or planet! Only by incidence upon its opposite pole, matter,
can the light of spirit come to its creative function. There is required
the interplay of its rays with a resistant surface to bring out its own
powers from latency to potency. Matter is, as already shown, the
"mother" of life, while spirit (God) is its father. And, as everywhere,
father spirit can not become creative until it unites with and fecundates
mother matter! His ray of power, his son, is in a sense the phallic
emanation of his seed, and the seed must become coefficient with the
unfructified egg of life in matter's bosom to bring a new birth to
pass. Almost it might be said, here is all truth in a nutshell. The light
of God would remain uncreative unless it entered the body or womb of
mother life and aroused the slumbering potentialities therein. And
here is the solution o a riddle of mythology which has baffled and
horrified Christian moralists no end. The fables of the gods represent
the son of deity as turning about and creating upon his own mother.
Horus is called "the Bull of his Mother"-~~Isis. The sons of God marry
their own mothers! Horrible! Detestable! shout the offended Church
Fathers. Yet the son of present life marries and impregnates his own
mother every time an acorn or grain of wheat falls into the ground
and germinates! It is discernible at last why the letter H comes a sec-
ond time into the form of the sacred tetragrammaton, or four-letter
name of Jehovah, the Ineffable Name of ancient Kabalism JHVEL
"J" is the Father God, the line that comes down from on high, goes
deep into the heart of matter and then turns upward to return to deity.
The H represents by its two vertical lines life divided into its two
aspects, spirit and matter, joined by the cross line, and so brings its
activity into the realm of the mother, matter. The V is their son, who
goes down in his turn into matter and returns. Now, why does the
mother H come into the formula of creation a second time? The
J H V would be a formula covering onethe first generation of life.
It would take it through one cycle. But that would not be a glyph that
would represent life as perpetuating itself through endless cycles of
renewal. It would end there. The graph must carry it on. As, then, the
son must take up the line and become father in his turn, he must unite
his productive fecundation with his old mother, matter. And so the H,
or mother, must be brought into the picture once more. And the holy
name becomes thus a descriptive form for all creation. For spirit is cre-
atively helpless, like the sunlight, without the co-operation of its op
posite, matter, which is dramatized as its wife and sister. Hence every
mythological deity was linked with his sha^ti or spouse, his creative
potency, without whom he would remain forever ungenerative. The
implications of this determination are tremendous, for if spirit can not
give birth to its archetypal conceptions without the implementation of
matter in actual creation, neither can it function apart from matter in
philosophy! And a thousand fantastic "spiritual" cult systems that have
deluded uncritical minds in every age by a denial of the utility of
matter, are at one stroke given the coup de grdce as illogical fallacies.
Reverting to the Trinity, it is desirable to go further with the Greek
elaborators of the Orphic wisdom in delineating the aspects of divine

Of the Father they assert that he "abides." A Hindu script has the
passage in which Lord Krishna says: "Having impregnated the uni-
verse with a portion of myself, I yet remain." He remains on his own
plane. He is the unmoved Mover and the uncaused Cause. He is with-
out experience himself, delegating the function of acquiring it to his
Son. He is unaffected, undivided, unchanging and undiminished.

Of the Son they say that he "proceeds." He bears the Father's po-
tentialities out into all the universe. He is the radiating arm of his
Father's power. He goes out to do the will of his parent and become
his vicegerent in the worlds. He becomes God's spoken Word. He
conveys the Logoic ideas out upon the bosom of his Father's emana-
tions to stamp them upon plastic matter. And proceeding from the
bosom of the Father, he goes forth into every condition which is pre-
cisely the opposite of that of the Father. He will become subject to ex-
perience and suffer all things, while the Father abides unmoved. He
will be affected, divided, changed and be sadly diminished, suffering
the loss of all that he enjoyed with the Father. He will endure all ex-
perience in every kingdom, will be fragmented into "partial natures/'
will enter a moving stream of endless change, and will be reduced to a
minimum of his glory on the cross of suffering.

Of the Holy Spirit they say that it "converts" matter to its own like-
ness; "is converted" by matter to its next higher estate; and finally

What, then, is the Holy Spirit, the Third Person? It is the first Ray
of divine life, undergoing its final conversion into active creative
agency. It is latent power of God's mind, transformed into working
efficacy. It is static divinity become kinetic. It is God's Logos, or Word,
carrying the command of his creative Voice, now converted into an
energy that moves matter and builds worlds. It is, finally, God's spirit
at work; no longer static, or merely potential, but released upon matter
in moving force fynesis.

It may be helpful to present a diagrammatic sketch of this formula-
tion, as it is a brief but complete graph of the entire rationale of all
incarnation, or involution of life in matter, and its evolution back to
spirit. It is thus a concise formula comprehending all that ancient scrip-
tures have been designed to elucidate.



f [CONVERTS (Matter).



All "history" takes place at the point where the light, or latent radi-
ation of divine force, comes in contact with matter, earth, the mother.
For there involution is brought to a halt and, spirit being implanted
within the heart of matter and awakening its slumbering potencies,
there is begun at that point a new growth of life, actuated by the union
of intelligence with sheer energy. And this new growth begins the
evolutionary stage, or the return unto the father, or parent, status.

When Trinities are given as Father, Mother and Son, the aspect here
characterized as the Holy Spirit is the "Son," the product o the union
of Father and Mother. When given as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the
Mother is implicit, being the material element necessary at all times.

The Son's, or the ray's, impregnation of Mother matter begins a new
process of growth from seed to adulthood, which through a cycle of
"conversion" and "being converted" lifts up the new form of Sonship
of deity to the stage which the Father had reached in its last previous
cycle. The cycle is completed with the "return"; but after aeonial rest
life gets ready to make its next rhythmic movement outward to unite
again with the Mother.

Having set forth in the most compact form the outline of the struc-
ture of ancient evolutionary knowledge, it is incumbent on us now to
trace the origin and fix the place of every single doctrine of theology in
the draft. It is requisite also that sufficient space be granted to present
as much as is permissible of the vast body of data supporting each
phase of the exegesis. The "descent" is the first feature of the chart that
relates heavenly creation to earthly life, and is logically the first aspect
of divine activity to be taken up. Its groundwork and presuppositions
having been laid down, its presence in ancient religion must be demon-
strated with sufficient fullness.

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