THERE IS NO GREATER danger to a cause than to leave a gap in its presentation which needs filling up, as may often be intuitively sensed.
It is of no avail to pass it over because such a gap hinders all progress.
Any building erected over it will inevitably collapse sooner or later, even if the greatest skill and best materials have been used.
Such is the case with the various Christian religious communities of today.
They persistently close their eyes and ears to certain points in their teaching which can be sensed as illogical.
They try to dismiss them with empty phrases instead of taking thought in all seriousness.
They readily apprehend the danger that one day the temporary bridges they have built over such gaps through a teaching of blind faith will no longer suffice, and they dread the moment when enlightenment will show up the flimsy character of these structures.
Moreover they know that they will then no longer be able to persuade anybody to follow such a deceitful course, with the natural result that all the rest of their teaching, however sound, will also be discarded.
They also realize that a single flash of fresh truth must sweep away such artificial constructions.
Still, for want of something better, they seek to maintain their swaying plank in spite of every danger.
Even worse, they are prepared to defend their position by every means in their power, and would destroy him who dared to provide a firmer crossing over the gap through the Truth Itself!
Without any hesitation they would try to repeat what occurred here on earth nearly two thousand years ago, and which still casts its shadow right down to the present day.
Yet they themselves, while using that event as the subject of a great accusation against the blindness and pernicious stubbornness of mankind, also make it the focal point of their own teaching and faith.
It was the church dignitaries and scholars of that time, with their narrow dogmatism and a conceit which betrayed their weakness, who were unable to recognize the Truth and the Son of God.
They also closed themselves against it, hating and persecuting Him and His followers out of envy and fear, whereas other people more readily opened themselves to the recognition and were quicker to perceive the Truth of the Word.
Although the present heads of Christian religious communities lay special stress on the Son of God’s path of suffering, they have learned and profited nothing from this fact.
It is just the present leaders of communities based on Christ’s teaching, as well as the leaders of newer movements, who would today try to eliminate any man who, by revealing the Truth Itself, could endanger the swaying bridges over the precarious gaps in their teachings and interpretations.
They would persecute him with a hatred born of fear and even more of vanity, exactly as happened once before.
They would lack the greatness to endure the fact that their own knowledge was insufficient to enable them to recognize the Truth and fill the gaps, and thus help to smooth the path for mankind towards an easier understanding and complete grasping of It.
And yet it is only possible for mankind to ascend by fully grasping the Truth; but they can never do so by blind ignorant faith!
One such gap created by an erroneous transmission concerns the concept of the “Son of Man”.
People cling to it morbidly, like the Pharisees who did not want to open themselves to the Truth brought by the Son of God, which opposed their conventional and rigid teachings.
Christ spoke of Himself only as the Son of God.
It was far from His thoughts to be so illogical as to call Himself also the Son of Man.
Even if, as a result of their own doubts, people have tried with the greatest artistry and skill in every direction to clarify this obvious contradiction between the Son of God and the Son of Man, which is intuitively sensed by every person who reflects quietly, it cannot be asserted in spite of all their efforts that they have managed to unify them.
The most favorable of all the interpretations could but repeatedly show a dual personality each standing beside the other, but never appearing as one!
This is quite in the natural order of things.
The Son of God cannot become the Son of Man just because He had to be born of a human body so as to enable Him to walk on earth.
Every Christian knows that the Son of God came only on a spiritual mission, and that all His words referred to the Spiritual Kingdom and were thus meant spiritually.
Consequently His repeated references to the Son of Man may not from the very outset be interpreted in any other way!
Why should an exception be made here?
In the spiritual sense, however, Christ was and remained only the Son of God!
Therefore when He spoke of the Son of Man He could not possibly mean Himself!
There is something far more stupendous in all this than is indicated in the present interpretations of the Christian religions.
This obvious contradiction should long ago have induced men to more serious reflection, had it not been for the fetters of dogmatism darkening everything!
Instead of making the serious investigations which are absolutely necessary to such incisive matters, they clung tenaciously to the transmitted words, thus putting on “blinkers” that hindered a free view.
The natural consequence is that these interpreters and teachers, although they stand in the Creation of their God, are not even able to understand this Creation aright.
Yet this carries the only possible prospect of coming closer to the Creator Himself, the Origin of all that is created!
In the first place Christ taught absolute naturalness, which means adjusting oneself to the Laws of Nature, and thus of Creation.
But only he who knows these laws can adapt himself to them.
Again these Laws of Nature embody the Will of the Creator, and therefore provide the path to the recognition of the Creator Himself.
Whoever knows the Laws of Nature will also experience with what absolute precision they gear into each other.
He therefore knows that their activity is unchangeable in the steady consistency with which it drives forward, as is also the Will of the Creator, God the Father.
Every divergence would mean a change of the Divine Will.
A change, however, would indicate imperfection.
But since the Primordial Source of All Being, God the Father, is unity and perfection, it follows that even the minutest deviation in the Laws of Nature, thus the laws of development, would be simply impossible and out of the question from the very start.
This fact imposes the condition that the philosophy of religion and the philosophy of natural science must in every respect coincide in perfect clarity and consistency if they are to represent the Truth!
That natural science today still has a very limited range of knowledge compared with the whole of Creation is not denied, as it has merely kept to the World of Gross Matter, because the intellect of today can only tackle what is bound to time and space.
The one absolutely unpardonable mistake made is that the disciples of this science try to ridicule and deny the existence of any-thing which goes beyond its range, except for a few scientists who have lifted themselves above the average and become more far-sighted, and who refused to cloak their ignorance with conceit.
Although the science of religion extends much further, it nevertheless remains dependent upon the Natural Laws which reach out beyond all that is bound to time and space and which, coming from the Primordial Source, extend down into what is physically visible without a break or change in their nature.
For this reason there may be neither gaps nor contradictions in religious teachings if they are really to accord with the Truth and thus with the Laws of Nature or the Divine Will, that is if they are to harbor the Truth.
Leading and responsible teachings cannot permit themselves the liberty of a blind faith!
The erroneous conception concerning the Son of Man therefore weighs heavily upon the followers of the true Christian teachings, because they quietly accept and carry on wrong transmissions, in spite of the fact that from time to time a contrary intuition quietly warns many people.
It is the very immutability and perfection of the Divine Will which precludes any arbitrary interference of God in Creation.
And it is this same perfection which is unable simply to eliminate Lucifer after he had fallen through his wrong actions!*
It also has to allow men to misuse the Natural Laws, the Divine Will, because the human spirit, in virtue of its origin from the eternal Sphere of Spiritual Substantiality, has been granted the freedom of decision.**
It is just because of this immutable perfection of the Creator’s Will that it must appear bound to a certain extent when it evidences itself in the happenings of ethereal and gross material Creation!
But upon this being recognized, only inferior and small human spirits will regard it as a limitation of the Power and Magnitude.
Such a view would merely be the result of their own narrow-mindedness!
It is the vastness of the whole problem that confuses them, because actually they can only envisage it within the narrower limits which correspond to their own understanding!
He, however, who makes an honest effort to recognize his Creator in His Work will, when he follows the sure road of the Natural Laws, receive a convincing idea of the vastness and extent of the manifestations that have their beginning in the Primordial Source, i.e., the starting point of all happenings, whence they spread through Creation like irremovable railway lines, along which all further life unrolls itself according to the position of the points.
The turning of the points, however, is done automatically*** by the human spirit on its journey through the World of Matter.
** Lecture II–1: “Responsibility”
* Lecture II–35: “The mystery of Lucifer”
*** Lecture II–22: “Man and his free will”
Unfortunately the majority allow themselves to be induced through Lucifer’s principle to turn the points in the wrong direction; and so their lives, in accordance with the immutable laws of continuous development which pervade all material Creation like railway lines, roll more and more downward towards a very definite final goal, a goal conforming to their attitude!
The direction in which the free decision turns the points can be exactly observed or intuitively perceived from the Point of Origin On High, making it possible clearly to recognize what will be the further course, which can only run along those lines which the Laws anchored in Creation have laid down according to the decision taken.
This circumstance enables many events to be foreseen, because the Laws of Nature or Creation never deviate in their urge to develop.
Here millennia make no difference.
Out of these clearly foreseen and final irrevocable goals come forth the great revelations shown to the specially blessed in spiritual pictures which, when passed on, come to the knowledge of mankind.
One thing, however, cannot be accurately predicted – the earthly time at which these revelations and promises find their fulfilment!
This will come to pass at the hour when such a life, travelling along the line it has chosen, reaches a foreseen intermediate station or the terminus.
The fate of man, of the nation, indeed of all humanity, may be compared to a train standing and waiting on a single track connected to lines leading in all directions.
Man switches the points as it pleases him, jumps on to the engine and turns on the steam, which means he animates it.
As soon as he turns on to the line he has chosen one can mention each station and the terminus only, but never give the exact hour of arrival, for this depends on the speed at which the train travels, and that may vary according to the nature of people.
For it is man who animates the engine, and he will drive it forward in accordance with his own nature, either with quiet evenness or impetuous temperament, or with alternate variations.
The nearer such a train – whether representing a single individual, a nation, or all mankind – gets to a station lying on the line of its fate, the more surely can its arrival be foreseen and foretold!
Connected to the network of lines are a few branch lines which, by turning the points occasionally during the journey, can be used to change its direction and so reach another terminus than the one first contemplated.
It is obviously necessary in this case to slow down when reaching such points, and then to stop and turn them.
The slowing down represents the act of reflection, and the stopping the decision taken by man, which he is always free to make until he reaches the last opportunity to choose.
The turning of the points is the deed that follows his decision.
The Divine Will which, like railway lines, penetrates the World of Matter in the form of the firmly established Natural Laws, may also be called the nerves in the work of Creation, which detect every unevenness in the gigantic body of Creation and report it to the starting point, the Creative Primordial Source.
This precise survey which, through the immutable laws, the Creator possesses over everything to its final end, causes Him to supplement His revelations with promises proclaiming the advent of helpers to be sent by Him in time, when a train is seen to be approaching the most dangerous curves, intermediary stations and termini!
Properly equipped by Him, such helpers are intended to open the eyes of those human spirits who are travelling along the wrong track, by proclaiming the Truth shortly before inevitable catastrophes and dangerous changes take place!
This serves to enable mankind to change the points in time, thus avoiding the increasingly dangerous places and also escaping the fatal terminus by taking a new direction!
As the Creator cannot alter the Perfection of His own Will, He will also, in connection with this help, keep exactly to the existing laws.
In other words, His Will is perfect from the Primordial beginning.
Every new expression of His Will must naturally also be perfect!
This presupposes that every new Act of Will issuing from Him must also bear within itself the same laws as those that preceded it.
Consequently it will fit itself precisely into the course of development prevailing in the Ethereal and Gross Material Worlds.
By virtue of the Perfection of God any other possibility is absolutely excluded!
It was through this already explained foreseeing that the promise of the coming of the Son of God in the flesh was given.
By proclaiming the Truth He was to induce mankind to turn their points!
According to the laws, however, the act of turning the points is reserved to the human spirits themselves.
As a result it is not possible to foresee how they will decide.
It is only those lines already chosen by the human spirits, in which they have already fixed the points according to their free decisions, which can be exactly surveyed with all the stations and curves right to the terminus.
This naturally excludes those turning-points which are still to be determined by a free decision of mankind, for this right is also just as immutable as everything else, due to the natural lawfulness of coming into existence and development through the Perfection of God.
And as the Creator has granted this right to the human spirits because of their origin in the Sphere of Spiritual Substantiality, He does not demand to know beforehand what their decision will be!
It is only the consequence of such a decision which He can clearly recognize to its very end, because it will then have to work itself out within His Will which rests in the laws governing Ethereal and Gross Material Creation.
If it were otherwise the reason could only be found in a lack of perfection, and this is absolutely out of the question!
Thus man should always be fully aware of this his immense responsibility, that he is really independent in his basic decisions!
Unfortunately, however, he imagines himself either as a totally dependent slave or, over-rating himself, as a part of the Divine!
The probable reason for this is that in both cases he considers himself relieved of all responsibility; in the one case as being too low and dependent a creature, and in the other as standing far above it!
Both of these views are wrong!
He should look upon himself as an administrator who has the free right of decision in certain matters, but also full responsibility; who thus enjoys great confidence, but who must not abuse it by being a bad householder!
And it is just this perfection which makes it necessary that, when sending direct help to mankind travelling on a wrong course, the Creator must reckon with the possibility of their failing to come to a right decision!
In His Wisdom and Love, which are the inherent, lawful and natural attributes of the Creator, He has still other means in reserve to afford help in such cases.
These join up as a continuation with the former course, which had been cut off through the failure of mankind.
Thus before the Son of God was incarnated upon earth, another revelation of the Truth was being prepared in the Eternal Kingdom of the Father, in case humanity should fail in spite of the Father’s great sacrifice of Love.
If mankind did not heed the warning of the Son of God, with His Pure Divine attitude, to the extent that they turned the points in the direction He indicated, but blindly continued on their course leading to destruction, then another Messenger should be sent out Who could stand closer to the inmost nature of mankind than did the Son of God.
He was once more to admonish and lead them in the last hour if … they desired to listen to His call of Truth!
That is the Son of Man!
Christ as the Son of God knew about this!
On recognizing during His Mission how choked and parched were the souls of men, it became clear to Him that His Ministration on earth would not bear the fruit which, given the good volition of mankind, should have ripened.
He grieved deeply about this, for He knew so well the Laws of Creation that bear the Will of His Father, and He could clearly foresee the way things were bound to develop towards the inevitable end, which the nature and volition of man were certain to bring about!
It was then that he began to speak about the Son of Man, Whose advent would become necessary because of the course events had taken.
His great Mission left two ways open for mankind to decide upon – either to follow His teaching and so ascend, avoiding all that brings destruction, or to fail and descend still further on the downward road leading to destruction.
The further He came towards the fulfilment of His great Mission the more clearly He saw that the decision of the great majority of mankind was inclined towards failure and thus towards destruction!
Consequently His utterances about the Son of Man formed themselves into direct promises and proclamations, such as when He declared: “But when the Son of Man cometh …”, etc.!
Therewith He marked the time just prior to the danger of destruction, which was bound to be the ultimate end according to the Divine Laws operating in the World of Matter, because of the failure of mankind towards His Mission and their insistence on continuing their chosen course.
This realization caused Him intense suffering, for He was Love incarnate!
Every transmission affirming that Jesus, the Son of God, at the same time called Himself the Son of Man is wrong!
The Divine Laws cannot hold anything so illogical, nor can it be ascribed to the Son of God Who Himself knew the Laws and carried them within Him!
The disciples could not grasp this, as was evident from their questions.
They alone spread the error which has prevailed up to the present day.
They thought that the Son of God meant Himself when He used the expression “the Son of Man” and, acting on this assumption, transmitted this error to posterity!
Neither did succeeding generations trouble to concern themselves more seriously with the want of logic inherent in it than did the disciples themselves!
They simply disregarded it, partly from diffidence and partly from indolence, although the all-embracing Love of the Creator would have evidenced itself all the more clearly and powerfully by a rectification of the error.
Following in the footsteps of the Son of God, that is, taking up and carrying on His Mission, the Son of Man will face mankind on earth as the Envoy of God the Father, so as to drag them back from their present course by proclaiming the Truth, and induce them voluntarily to decide to change their attitude.
This will lead them away from the destruction that now awaits them!
Son of God and Son of Man!
Surely it is not so hard to discover that there must be a difference between these Two?
Each of these words has its own clearly defined, strictly marked meaning, and those who would mix and fuse them into one must forthwith be stamped as too indolent to think.
Hearers and readers of my lectures will be aware of how the natural process of development, beginning with Primordial Light, which is God the Father, descends right down to the globes of the Gross Material World.
The Son of God came from Divinity Unsubstantiate, quickly passing through all the spheres until He was incarnated in the World of Gross Matter.
This is a process of radiation!
Therefore it is absolutely right to call Him the Son of God Who became flesh.
His rapid transit through the Sphere of Spiritual Substantiality (it is only there that the human spirit has its origin) permitted Him neither there, nor subsequently in the ethereal part of Creation, to gain a foothold strong enough so that His core of Divine Unsubstantiality could obtain the strong protecting covers of these different natures.
Consequently these covers, which otherwise serve as a protective armor, remained thin!
This had the advantage that His innermost Divine nature burst through and shone forth more easily and strongly, but it also had the drawback that in the regions of the earth hostile to the Light it was all the more quickly opposed and furiously attacked because it stood out.
The strong Divine part, which was only thinly veiled in the physical vessel, had to remain a stranger among men, something which stood too far apart.
Figuratively speaking, one might say that His Divine core was insufficiently armed and equipped for the lower Gross Material Sphere, through lack of absorption from the Sphere of Spiritual Substantiality and the Ethereal World.
The gulf between the Divine and earthly parts was but slightly bridged.
As mankind neither heeded nor treasured this gift of Divine Love but, through the natural driving power of all Darkness, faced the luminous Son of God with animosity and hatred, a second Envoy, better equipped for the World of Gross Matter, had to come – the Son of Man!
The Son of Man is also an Envoy of God and has issued from Divinity Unsubstantiate, which was also a process of radiation!
Before beginning His Mission in the World of Gross Matter, He was incarnated in the World of Primordial Spiritual Substantiality, and was thus closely connected with that spiritual species in which the seed-germ of the human spirit originates.
Thus the Divine Unsubstantiate core of this second Envoy comes nearer to the origin of the human spirit; thereby gaining greater protection and direct power against it!
It was only after being in this sphere that He was sent down on His Mission to the World of Gross Matter at that time which enabled Him to arrive at the proper hour on the field of battle, there to show the right way into the Kingdom of the Father to all those seriously seeking God and asking for spiritual guidance and, at the same time, to protect them against the attacks of those who are hostile and striving downwards!
Therefore, be on your guard, so that you may recognize Him as soon as His time is come, for that will also be your time!
* * *
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