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e-book: Afterlife


 

War Letters From The Living Dead Man


Introduction

LETTER

 I.

The Return of "X"
II. A Dweller on the Threshold
III. An Assurance
IV. The Way of Understanding
V. Astral Monsters
VI. The Archduke
VII. The "Chosen People"
VIII. Spectres of the Congo
IX. Unseen Guardians
X. One Day as a Thousand Years
XI. Many Tongues
XII. The Beautiful Being
XIII. The Body of Humanity
XIV. The Foeman Within
XV. Listening in Brussels
XVI. The Sixth Race
XVII. An American on Guard
XVIII. A Master of Compassion
XIX. The Rose-Veiled Stranger
XX. Above the Battlefields
XXI. A Soul in Purgatory
XXII. Peace Propaganda
XXIII. The Mystery of Desire
XXIV. The Scales of Justice
XXV. For Love's Sake
XXVI. A Master of Mind
XXVII. Invisible Enemies
XXVIII. The Glory of War
XXIX. A Friend of "X"
XXX. The Rose and the Cross
XXXI. A Serbian Magician
XXXII. Judas and Typhon
XXXIII. Crowns of Straw
XXXIV. The Sylph and the Father
XXXV. Behind the Dark Veil
XXXVI. The "Lusitania"
XXXVII. Veiled Prophecies
XXXVIII. Advice to a Scribe
XXXIX. One of These Little Ones
XL. The Height and the Depth
XLI. A Conclave of Masters
XLII. A Lesson in the Kabala
XLIII. The Second Coming
XLIV. Poison Gases
XLV. The Superman
XLVI. The Entering Wedge
XLVII. The New Brotherhood
XLVIII. In the Crucible
XLIX. Black Magic in America
L. Things to Remember


 

 

 

LETTER XXX

THE ROSE AND THE CROSS

            More and more I am charmed and amazed by that one whom we call the Beautiful Being. I shall never understand it, for its ways are not our ways.
            Yesterday it passed over the battlefield again, and I should have written when I came to you a few hours afterward had I not pitied your weariness. Do not be discouraged. Sometimes the Masters of Compassion may seem to their servants to have no compassion; but they know, as the servants cannot know, that the hardest road leads up the highest mountain, and that there is rest at the top.
            The Beautiful Being passed over the battlefield. Imagine a rose in a cannon’s mouth, a bird singing in the heart of an earthquake, a pearl in a landslide, an angel in hell.

            You know not the meaning of the word battlefield. Yesterday thousands died in the awful uproar. Noise! noise! noise!–till the nerves shrieked with pain and despair seized the soul. To go out of life in that seething maelstrom is generally to pass into another seething maelstrom, hotter and noisier than the one left behind.
            How can I write of war so as to spare your feelings? The great Teachers are not trying to spare your feelings. They want you to feel and feel, till the very force of the wave of feeling carries you high on the shore of Adeptship. And they want you to think and think, till the irresistible cold of logic freezes self out of you. Ice and fire!
            If you shrink from knowing what the soldiers of the nations have suffered that you may be free, you are unworthy of that freedom. Do not shrink from suffering. The husk of the seed must be broken before the sprout can appear.
            In dying for their country, those souls in the hell of battle are giving birth to the new time. In suffering with them, your souls are giving birth to the new in yourselves. Do not look for joy while humanity is in travail, unless you can find the joy in suffering. Yes, I know the time when first, and through whom, that grand idea found lodgment in your consciousness. It is the secret of great souls in this hour of the world’s pain.

            If you suffer till you can suffer no more–then the poles shift, and the joy of suffering illuminates the soul. Then the beautiful being in yourself hovers over the battlefield where the lesser self has been slain.
            There is a beautiful being in every one of you, the bird that sings in the heart of the earthquake, the rose that nestles in the hot mouth of the cannon, the pearl that cannot be crushed by the landslide, the angel that illumines hell.
            All the normal feelings of the human heart are intensified at this time. No one is the same as before the war burst–no one, anywhere in the world. The soul of humanity is in travail. This incarnation of humanity is turned against itself, and rends itself. The heart of humanity is an abyss, into which humanity had grown too blind to look, so the blazing torches of the guardians of good and evil have been thrust into the abyss, and all the drowsing dwellers therein have been suddenly, rudely awakened.
            Oh, hearts of earth, do not fall asleep again! Pity and love one another, for the pain of one is the pain of each, and over the battlefield of the suffering race the Beautiful Being hovers.

            Humanity is the One, and humanity is the many, and all together you may come into the inheritance of your Father which is in heaven.
            You are familiar with the symbol of the Rose-Cross. Not until the hard wood is driven through your four limbs, in the pain of your shocked and wounded nerves, can the great red rose of love unfold its perfumed petals upon your breast, between the arms of the cross.
            The human in you is the pain of the cross, the divine in you is the perfume of the rose, and you yourself, you human and divine, are the Rose-Cross.
            If you shrink from the splintering pain of the wood as it claims you for its own, you cannot smell the perfume of the rose which also claims you for its own.
            Do not refuse the great initiation, O humanity of the races! Do not hide yourself in the dungeon of fear when the great Initiator comes!
            On the awful cross of war shall blossom the red rose of the new race. On the cross of each mortal form may blossom its red rose.

            The rose marks the balance between the East and the West, between the rising and the setting sun, between the human and the divine. The arms of the cross extend to infinity, its feet are buried in the substance of eternity, its head is among the angels and the gods, and the heart of the rose is everywhere. It is in every heart of all these myriads who shrink at the touch of the hard wood.
            I hear every day the shrieks of those who are making the vicarious atonement for the race. When they lie mangled on the battlefield, the arms of the cross are being driven through their quivering flesh, and the petals of the rose are unfolding in their hearts.
            They are dying for love at the hands of hate, for love and hate are opposite and omnipresent. Their love for their country is their call to the atonement, their at-one-ment with the God who established the law of the East and the West, the Height and the Depth, the opposing forces of Love and Hate. They have accepted the sacrifice. For them shall be the resurrection and the life, after their sojourn among the dead, their sojourn in hell.

            They shall appear to the Magdalen at the door of the sepulchre, the one whose sins were forgiven because she loved much, and who shall call the disciples to give them the tidings of great joy.
            The soul of the world is the risen Christ, and the disciples rejoice at the tidings.
            How can I withhold from you the great event which Time has ushered in?
            For thirty pieces of silver the soul of the world was sold, and the Judas of the world has given the kiss of betrayal with the name of God on his lips, and the Roman soldiers are already dividing the garments.
            Pontius Pilate has washed his hands of the issue, and his wife weeps in her chamber at the disregarding of her dream. The priests of the Sanhedrim are wagging their heads with satisfaction, but the veil of the Temple of Humanity is rent from top to bottom.
            How could you receive the message if you had not suffered, O listener at the door of Time? Who would believe you, had you not grasped the truth of the atonement? Until the wood of the cross had been driven through your limbs, the rose could not blossom, O world in travail at this hour!

            Be still, and know that God is God. In the stillness of perception the petals begin to open, and joy steals over the heart, and the heart swells with the expanding joy, till every fibre of the cross is alive and tingling with the joy at the heart of the rose, and the fragrance sweetens the world.
            And the Beautiful Being, a ray of the Holy Spirit, hovers over the Calvary of the battlefield.

            April 25.

Letter XXXI

LETTER XXIX