Climbing Jacob’s Ladder

Tithe

Definition of tithe

1: a tenth part of something paid as a voluntary contribution or as a tax especially for the support of a religious establishment

2: the obligation represented by individual tithes

3tenthbroadly : a small part

4: a small tax or levy

Although the Mosaic law required the Israelites to pay a tithe to the Levitical priesthood in support of worship, the tradition of tithing has earlier biblical origins. The first mention of a tithe goes back to Abraham, who paid tithes to the mysterious Melchizedek, he without genealogy or end of days, made like a son of God and a perpetual priest. It is obvious from the Genesis text that Melchizedek is more of an angelic figure than human, and the writer of the Book of Hebrews makes this clear in his exposition of the subject in chapter 7. Melchizedek represents the eternal spirit within of which Jesus came to fully reveal. It is up to each of us to tithe our 10% to this aspect of ourselves. What does this mean?

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While the numbers are constantly in flux, by fitting a theoretical model of the composition of the universe to the combined set of cosmological observations, scientists have come up with the composition of universe as consisting of 68% dark energy, 27% dark matter, and 5% normal matter. What if we upped that 5% to 10%, and called dark energy and dark matter “space?” This would fit nicely into Preston Harold’s assessment of Jacob’s tithe to the Lord at Peniel.

Jacob, later to become “Israel,” dreamed of a ladder set up on the earth, its top reaching to heaven, angels ascending and descending upon it. When he awoke, he took the stone used for a pillow, set it as a covenant, and made this vow: “of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.” Something in man, in life, demands tithing. If one meets the need of the day, he will see to a self-imposed taxing of his revenue. Tithing serves the Lord, thy God – one must band for himself a bit of all that comes his way. He must serve his body and its needs, seeing it as “temple,” even as Jesus did.

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Apply tithing to the second law of thermodynamics, for tithing appears to be the meaning Jacob gave to his dream. “Angels” – the expressed energy of God – ascending and descending the ladder reaching from earth to heaven bespeak a changing arrangement, not of the system itself but of the energy within it; but if tithing is the meaning inherent in this, the dream would say that in universal sense nature’s law works so that through the motion of any system all power cannot be exerted or spent because its effect is diminished as a bit of the energy is “banked” to provide in space source energy for the future. If so, source energy cannot be entirely spent: the last act provides a reserve ad infinitum –  thus, the universe rests upon the last act’s creation of a reserve. If in each move that has ever been made nature has tithed a bit of energy, there is everywhere “banked” in space a reserve in God’s name: one, and it could be that energy, made unavailable at the time, is returned in time or now as available energy. Such energy made available now would not reverse time’s arrow or the direction of the transfer of energy from available to unavailable state because now is past before man can grasp it, and thus the arrow points always from past to future.

Jacob takes the experience (the need of the day) he has in the 10% of the universe known as the material world and offers it back to spirit for continued building of creation; a perpetual genesis of everlasting life and world without end.

Until next time, peace.

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Gloria Patri

Robert Oppenheimer points out that “there are very weak forces which appear in radioactivity; we do not understand why some of these weak forces change properties that strong forces…do not change. To one such slow change…we owe most of the heat and light (from the sun) reaching the earth.” Loren Eisley considers another weak force that gave rise to a weak explosion: “In a sense it was the most terrible explosion in the world, because it forecast and contained all the rest. The coruscating heat of atomic fission, the red depths of the Hydrogen bomb – all were potentially contained in a little packet of gray matter that…quite suddenly appears to have begun to multiply itself in the thick-walled cranium of a ground-dwelling ape…Even the solar system has now felt the impact of that tiny, soundless explosion.”

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Preston Harold says in time this explosion produced a bundle of gray matter through which was expressed two thousand years ago the strength of mildness, of weak forces:

Jesus’ cosmogony, expressed in the beginning verses of the Gospel of St. John, presents as the creative impetus a force as “weak” as a word or one measure of light. Other words He spoke, and the opening words of Genesis, point to a beginning of the universe in one act that brought forth light, and to a “becoming” of the universe as it operates under the Law He described in terms of the working of the kingdom of God. In Jesus’ description of the working of the kingdom, the idea of the “expansion” and “shuffling” of energy up to a given time is encompassed. But because Jesus speaks of the “unquenchable fire” (in which matter is involved), His cosmogony does not project “heat-death” for the universe. Can these words that once struck terror to the heart be words of comfort now to men in a universe scientists say faces “heat-death” when entropy’s role is played? According to Jesus, the “flame” cannot be quenched and the warmth of life will ever be.

Jesus says as much in his most famous teaching session, fortifying us with the certainty that entropy does not have the last word.

In the Sermon on the Mount, pointing to the lilies of the field, Jesus gave His answer to the future; in this passage there occurs the word arrayed (its synonym arrangement is the word so intimately involved with entropy). He concludes:

Take no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient to the day is the evil therof.

If evil is pure matter, as this study postulates, then sufficient to the day is matter, the source of heat. This is true today and will be true every day, or always. Thus, Jesus says, in effect, take no thought for the morrow’s supply of fuel.

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Life’s fuel is never-ending.

World without end. Amen, amen.

Until the next installment, peace.

The Serpent, Science, and Religion

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It’s time for us to step aside and take a deeper look at the serpent and it’s role in the human story. To do so I will quote at length from Valentin Tomberg’s magnum opus, Meditations on the Tarot. This is from his meditation on the ninth major Arcanum, “The Hermit:”

…the serpent of Genesis “who was the most cunning of all living creatures” (Genesis iii, 1),…aspiration is the expansion of consciousness in the horizontal (“the fields”). The ultimate aim of the logic of cunning, that of the serpent, is not to become God but to become “like God.” “To become like” – this is the essence of cunning and is also the meaning of scientific faith, the scientific creed, which is at the same time only a paraphrase and development of the promise of the serpent: “your eyes will be opened, and you will be like gods, knowing good and evil”(Genesis iii, 5).

To open your eyes, to be like gods, knowing good and evil – this is the great Arcanum of empirical science. This is why it is dedicated to the cause of enlightenment (“open your eyes,” for the horizontal); this is why it aspires to absolute power for man (“be like gods”); and this is why, lastly, it is intrinsically amoral or morally neutral (“knowing good and evil”).

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Does it deceive us? No. It opens our eyes in fact, and thanks to it we see more in the horizontal; it gives us power over Nature in fact, and makes us sovereign over Nature; it is useful to us in fact, no matter whether for good or for evil. Empirical science in no way deceives us. The serpent has not lied – on the plane where its voice and promise were audible.

On the plane of horizontal expansion (“the fields” of Genesis) the serpent certainly keeps its promise…but at what price with regard to other planes, and with regard to the vertical?

What is the price of scientific enlightenment, this “opening of the eyes” in the horizontal, i.e. for the quantitative aspect of the world? It is at the price of the obscuration of its qualitative aspect…Science reduces quality to quantity…It [uses] formula[s] expressing quantitative factors…of something deprived of all quality.

But here’s a wrench in Tomberg’s spokes. Although he acknowledges the serpent’s honesty in regards to the horizontal, biological evolutionary plane, he speaks as if the serpent has always been only in league with the horizontal. Yet the Genesis story implies the serpent’s stature used to be vertical, upright. And the serpent’s promise was audible on the plane of the vertical, while Adam and Eve were still in full relationship with God. It is only after imparting it’s knowledge via the Knowledge of the Tree of Good and Evil that it became the serpent that we know today, “cursed” to only existence on the horizontal plane (“eating dust”).

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The serpent wasn’t just cunning, but was wise. Even Jesus himself told his followers to be wise as serpents. Yet the serpent’s cunning/wisdom seems to be only self-referential, not being able to reach beyond it’s own needs. That’s why Jesus tempers his saying by finishing with the injunction to be innocent as doves. So a valid interpretation overlooked by Tomberg is that the serpent makes a monumental sacrifice for all of humanity. Without the serpent’s “gift,” we would never have inherited the values and ethics of the vertical plane. Yes, friends, the story is a bit more complicated than Tomberg would have us understand. It would seem for there to be an expansion of consciousness in the horizontal, it is necessary for the vertical to be imparted. It is this point that Preston Harold seems to overlook as well in his comment from our previous post where he said, “But man, the only true biped, posed himself uprightly- alone in all the world, threw himself transverse the ‘natural’ line, became a vertical being, in truth measuring more than he was and more than evil measures.” Nowhere does Harold mention how man posed himself uprightly.

Yet both Harold and Tomberg speak the truth as to our current predicament, as our journey back to the source must always begin right where we are. And so we return to Tomberg:

What should one do, confronted with the choice between science and religion?…is it necessary to choose? Does it not suffice to give each of these two aspirations its place – not that which they arrogate to themselves, but that which is their proper place?

In fact, if there is not a religious empirical science or a scientific religion, there are religious scientists and scientific believers. In order to be a religious scientist or a scientific believer honestly, i.e. without compromising one’s conscience, it is necessary to add to the definite horizontal aspiration the definite vertical aspiration, i.e. to live under the sign of the cross:

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It is at this point where “The Shining Stranger” enters the picture. Not only does “The Shining Stranger” postulate that science and religion must work in tandem, it reaches beyond and claims that scientific striving has already “crossed” over the strictly horizontal realm and found itself smack dab in the middle of exploring Jesus’ Kingdom of God, itself the very same quantum realm that science has been attempting to come to terms with since the early 20th century. In other words, the serpent of materialistic science has been crucified on the cross of matter and now must come to terms with its resurrection. The question for humanity now is will it heed the prophetic truth proclaimed by Tomberg, Harold, and those akin to them who had eyes to see and ears to hear? In other words, “When the Son of Man returns, will he find faith on the earth?”

Until next time, peace.

The Holy Spirit

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In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.  The earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters. –Genesis 1:1-2

We firmly believe and simply confess that there is only one true God … the Creator of all things visible and invisible, spiritual and corporeal; who from the very beginning of time by His omnipotent power created out of nothing [de nihilo condidit] both the spiritual beings and the corporeal. –Fourth Lateran Council of 1215

Rudolf Steiner, speaking of ethereal or ‘negative’ spaces in regard to the understanding of the laws of living processes, uses the idea of “nothingness” – ein Nichts – and he brings together with this concept the word chaos…[Chaos] used in it’s ancient sense – the Greek word Xaos…describes a region empty of formed matter, but ready to receive new, living growth or development, such as is to be found in a seed or any other germinating process….An embryo is actually such a receptive, ethereal space – a realm of empty nothingness into which new formative process can work… -Olive Whicher, “The Heart of the Matter”

To attempt to explain the Holy Ghost is to attempt image building of something altogether different from any manifestation. To try to say what “it” is not, is to say that the “Holy Ghost” is not the precise opposite of everything in manifestation, but is different from and equal to it because “it” empowers, contains, and is the all-pervading medium. The only “thing” one can liken to “it” is space – that of space which is not its fields, is not energy, but is the “manifestation of nothing,” paradoxical as this statement is, that allows energy’s manifestations to operate within it and matter to exist in it in discrete state. It both encompasses and involves energy’s dual nature that gives rise to the trinity in being: negative, positive, neutral. -Preston Harold, “The Shining Stranger”

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Hopefully one can see the parallels contained within these four citations. The concept of the Holy Spirit seems to leave many of us bereft of a hard and fast definition. How does one hold onto “spirit?” Once you try and grasp it, it slips right through your fingers. Preston Harold concurs:

A scientist would be as hard put to explain what space itself is as a theologian is to explain what the Holy Ghost is – both can only discuss what takes place through it….The all-pervading space that contains Einstein’s motionless ether may be likened to the Holy Ghost of God, a priori, that which cannot itself be examined because the ether, motionless, stands between it and all manifestation within it. The ether alone as the seat of the electromagnetic fields may be likened to the being of God, the Father, one’s refuge, that allows him to “Be still and know…” The Son may be likened to the elementary particle, endowed with the “electric charge”: I will be. Jesus speaks of the Son ‘sitting on the right hand of the power,” and His teaching points to the Father as the seat of the power that is being given over to the Son.

We will continue discussing the relationship between the Holy Spirit and space in our next installment. Until then, peace.

The Tower of Babel and the Mystery of Language: Part III

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Back on the topic of language and communication in the Tower of Babel legend, Preston Harold takes us on an evolutionary journey:

The Babel legend deals also with another aspect of man and the development of consciousness – it indicates the nature of the change evolutionary processes effected as man moved from his preceding state to Homo sapiens generation, and it points to the way he must evolve to meet his future. The Genesis legend says that man must…create words. But the legend also indicates that communication was established in the beginning, and in the dramas of Eden and Noah’s ark there is a broader sense of communication than follows thereafter:

In the days when the whole earth had one language and one vocabulary, there was a migration from the east… 

These words suggest an absolute means of communication, one that was effortless insofar as conscious striving was concerned. Only telepathy or clairvoyance correspond to this. The Babel legend deals with Homo sapiens’ infant being, reflected today in the infant being of any man.

If the Noah legend tells of the birthing process of the human being, what comes next as a person matures is the development of communication and interaction. This is the part of human development which the Babel story conveys to us.

Mothers and their newborns have a means of communication in which words aren’t needed; intuition, gut feelings, premonitions, not to mention the obvious cries for food! Although this non-language based form of interaction is appropriate for a time, it is ultimately wanting for the requirements of humankind:

Unrestricted as telepathy appears to be, it is insufficient to meet man’s need to pass along to the next generation what he gains in knowledge and realizes to be truth. Only language, words, can meet this need. The demand to understand words and to communicate his understanding in words is put upon the child as he passes from infancy to childhood – above all, he must identify himself as a man. A transition must take place within him. The Babel legend would say that some inward power speaks, and the one word it could say that would confound the babble of the childish ego-group and start it along the path of conscious striving the one word that would make all men strangers even to themselves, is “I” – the seed of Enos, mortal, flowering in the articulated vocable, the word, its capacity, content, and meaning is unknown.

So what about this moment that confounds us, the moment when we realize that we are an “I” and not a “we?” Dr. Franz Winkler says:

“In his second or third year, every sane child undergoes an inner experience of utmost significance, an experience which radically changes his mental life. From that moment on he ceases to refer to himself in the third person and conceives of “I.” Some endowed with an unusual memory will recall this event later and will consequently not easily be swayed by philosophers and psychologists who deny the reality of selfhood.”

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Harold begins to wrap things up for us:

The concept offered here is that when something within man and beyond his consciousness sounded through him, destroying his pre-Homo sapiens means of communication, the forces of extrasensory perception began to be dispersed, as were the tower’s builders, and this drama is repeated in the life of the child today… The Babel Tower legend suggests…that man moved away from his old means of communication, that he is still on the move, his development not to be arrested by any social structure he contrives.

But wait, is this all? Is there no room for any development of the mind in the area of communication with one another? Harold will end his wrap up by looking ahead:

But it must be pointed out that mental and spiritual powers rise in a spiral – ESP appears now to be Imagereturning in a form refined, for at the height of modern man’s intellectual powers he is apt to experience intuitive prompting, a sort of inward clairvoyance, that vastly enhances his mental reach. Jesus, himself, personifies the return of the power as empathy grows and intellect comes full flower.

And as a matter of fact, as we will explore later in this blog, for Preston Harold this mind power is essential if we are to understand Jesus’ miracles and resurrection.

Oh, and before we go, one last lesson from our story…

The Babel legend expresses a noble intellectual ideal – the fallacy is that not even Nimrod is named responsible, for it begins, “They said,” so that responsibility does not come to rest anywhere, or upon anyone engaged in the gigantic group effort. The legend says that something in man prohibits the completion of any irresponsible effort to solve any problem or reach any goal. In Eden, in the beginning, man is human and is given dominion over all other life because he was made to be responsible for self and acts. Trying to know by eating any fruit represents a thoughtless, mechanistic effort to achieve life’s goal automatically and irresponsibly. The Eden legend says such effort will fail – and the Babel legend confirms the dictum.

Until next time, peace…

 

 

 

 

The Factor of an Open System

Why has the human being taken the irrational path?  What is it about mankind that makes him an “open system,” not closing off at a particular point in evolutionary development?

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From Ardrey’s summary of man’s specialness, it looks as though this one creature has possessed from his beginning a presence, or God-sense, that acts as a lamp unto his feet and a light to his path.  The Genesis legend says this presence was in man’s garden-being and that it has never left him.  It would have required a knowing Authority within to guide ancestral-man-cell along the irrational path that led to the pinnacle.  If from the beginning this presence guided ancestral-cell into and through every necessary step by blinding the creature to much in the outer world while giving it inner vision, this would make all the difference there is between man and other forms of life.  This Authority would have had to insist upon a selection not of more sensory, but of more mental equipment than the creature needed…

But what sort of factor would be a true and sure guide?

This must be a factor which beforehand had known every form and being, the way into and out of each mode of life.  ImageOne cannot give this factor a satisfactory name.  One can only say that it is the Self-sense of the Creator, the “I-sense” of being, or “God-being” in the one-cell creature that became man, a cell resembling amoeba but different from the amoeba that man knows today; for such a cell would be and would evolve into a form like unto but not identical to any other form of life, because an essential ingredient abstracted from the creature’s consciousness and hidden within would chart its course.

 We will further explore this factor of “I-being,” “God-sense,” in our next post.  Until then, peace.

From Seth to Jesus

The third offspring of Adam and Eve is the oft overlooked Seth.  Of Seth Eve says, “God has appointed for me another child instead of Abel, because Cain killed him.” So essentially Seth is Abel’s replacement in the legend.  Preston Harold says

If one elects to tell the story of evolution in terms of the Genesis legend, he cannot overlook Seth, meaning compensation, replacement seed, third son of Adam-Eve, his life paralleling Cain’s in the wilderness.  From Seth come the beings the legend calls truly human for “to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos (meaning mortal); then began men to call upon the name of the Lord.”

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From an evolutionary viewpoint, what would Seth have been like?

Seth, in Adam’s own image and likeness, must have inherited nakedness, must have been an unspecialized omnivore, who needed tool and weapon; but to triumph in the evolutionary play, he must have a superior brain, or cortex, and a superior power such as speech is.

Current thoughts on who along the chain of man’s evolution Seth represents are not totally agreed upon and more time will be required to come to terms accepted by the majority of anthropologists.  But Genesis does tell us a bit more about him.  Our author continues…

Although the Genesis legend indicates that man is Seth’s child, it does indicate also that there was a crossing of Cain’s progeny and Seth’s: the type called by the name Lamech, meaning wild man, is in the line of both Cain and Seth.  Enoch, teacher, appears both as son of Cain and son of Jared, descendant of Seth.

It is here that we run into the first “end of creation,” as Lamech begets Noah.   Genesis tells us that Noah was “perfect in his generations,” apparently steering clear of Nephilim, or “giant” genetics, which resulted in “great wickedness” and “hearts and thoughts set on evil continually in the earth.”

Noah, meaning rest, may be seen to represent Cro-Magnon man, for his progeny take over the earth.  The legend indicates that in the Noah Imagetype or Cro-Magnon man there was awareness of mortal error in shedding human blood, in eating human flesh, and that this type man developed into a great hunter of the beasts so beautifully depicted by some ancient Nimrod on the walls of the Cave of Lascaux.

So how do we get from Seth to Jesus?  Harold ruminates

According to the legend, Seth’s progeny, adulterated by Cain-type genes, came to rest in the Noah type.  Man’s brain and chin were there, in evolution’s play compensating him for lack of a coat, and for lack of a true killer instinct which mankind at large does not unanimously possess.  Man, however, has not come through the years uninvolved in Cain’s crime of brother-murder.  The legend says men bear Cain’s trace – Cainan, meaning acquisition, appears on the family tree but on it there is no trace of Abel – purely carnivorous? – whose name means transitoriness.  The legend says that all races evolved from an ancestral type in whose genes lay the specialness man exhibits, making all humankind brothers, equals in being.  This truth Jesus sought to establish.  In His words, one confronts man’s original endowment: the kingdom of God within him.  The Eden legend may be trying to say that the garden man must tend is within himself – was so from the beginning.

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Until next time, peace…