Universal Brotherhood – December 1897

THE GENIUS OF THE COLLECTIVE MASSES — Sarah F. Gordon

The Source of Genius is the Unknown Silence pervading unfathomable Space.

The ancient seers preferred in their Wisdom the silent acknowledgment of the all-pervading Infinite, and left this Being nameless, inconceivable, fathomless, illimitable, in other words, sacred from contact with life, unpolluted by any approach. All great thinkers realize the impossibility of postulating the Infinite being. To their minds, vision is obscured by a veil which is indefinite, partaking of the Great Unknown, and to that extent pervasive. The seer perceives this veil as ever present darkness or shadow, by which alone the resplendent Light can be visible. Therefore shadow is ever present. "The darkness and the light are both alike to Thee, Thou Silent One." This shadow, the seer names Voice, Word, Logos, Eternal Law, Life. This film or emanation, shadow, is ever in motion born from the inherent energy pervading it. From this film or mist all things spring, the subjective or imperceptible and the objective or perceptible. We perceive all energy or life is dual in its nature, an outbreathing or going forward from its source and an inbreathing or contracting or return. This is vibratory or undulatory motion. It is through vibration all form is evolved and it is through Vibration all form is resolved into its primary elements. Thus bringing about evolution and involution, manifest in sound, light, heat, electricity, magnetism, etc. Life is manifested in man that he may again assimilate into the Great Unknown. It is the inherent potency of the divine utterance that constructs and destroys, rebuilds and remodels. The above explanation of the process of creation may seem rather misty and vague. It cannot be otherwise, for infinite power of expression and reception is not the property of the thinker, while energizing. He is but germinating and requires the suitable soil, the eternal depths of space in which to mould and bring forth into the light of day the plan dimly foreshadowed in his mind. When the thinker realizes this, he is becoming spiritual, in close touch with the infinite source of life.

This Eternal Motion or Vibration compels every varied activity in an infinite variety of forms. No such thing is conceivable as isolation, perfect individuality. It is in union or combination that progress is attainable. If each atom flew off on its own tangent caused by the outbreathing from the inner cause of its being, it would be lost in the immensity of space; therefore it is drawn by its inbreathing to the central source of all, according to the law of its being, which is a continual outbreathing followed by an inbreathing, or an expanding and consequent contracting which keeps it in its orbit. This is carried on in an infinitesimal manner with each form as well as in the immensity of large combinations of forms or atoms. The same law governs all.

Man can see only in part, as he is limited by the line of vision between the perceptible and the imperceptible at this instant of time. "The key-note determines the vibration."

All forms or groups of atoms so called, are combinations of infinitesimal atoms ever moving. No permanent crystallization is possible.

Unity in diversity is the law. The jelly-like protoplasm contains within its environment the universe, and cannot be comprehended by the mineral, the plant, the animal, man or even archangel. Only the inconceivable spirit knows it, and will not impart this mystery only so far as it becomes it. Life implies the outbreathing and inbreathing of the Great Breath. Separating, again uniting, are the dual factors of Life. This process man perceives in his reasoning, discriminating faculties when in disintegrating old formulas, he is ever synthesizing or building a new form to be in turn torn in pieces by the inevitable law of life, which demands infinite variety of conception in new forms for the awakening consciousness of the past.

Man is but a copy of the Universe, a big atom composed of an innumerable group of infinitesimal atoms, all instinct with Divine Life pulsating and ever throbbing for utterance. No man is separate from other men. All are linked with invisible ties by the Great Unknown. Each man is but a certain combination of a variety of ideas seeking expression through him, the synthesizer or centre of that particular group at that instant of time, viz., the present moment. He represents the result of Karma of past efforts, of which the present is the fruitage. He is ever advancing along the lines of inward progress to the depths of the hidden, and more and more absorbed by it and becoming the Great Unknown. Hence, when man so concentrates all the powers of his being that he rises superior to his limitations caused by the past and consciously wills to pierce the dark veil or shadow, he is rapidly electrifying all the atoms of his combination by rousing the latent power in each. Consequently there is war in the camp and suffering and apparent disaster ensue, with tearing of old combinations and breaking of shells as the result.

These back ideals reassert themselves, and the present ideals constantly force the mastery. Hence, the weariness, the danger brought on by this new order of things. He is in agony and longs to be free, being overcome with the grossness of the past.

The Divine Fire is but working and breaking the old crystallization and revealing the hidden Flame in the consumption of the shell, and scattering it to the four winds. The shock is good. He is becoming spiritual. He is approaching the Flame. Then will emanate from the man (purified by suffering, the great revealer) higher, finer emanations to other men. He is losing himself in the Divine, and becoming a Saviour or co-worker, the Christos or Christ, Great Soul. He sacrifices what he has gained to others, for his emanations are rapidly absorbed by others struggling as he was and he must share or exchange by taking their griefs as his. He breathes in with his life energy these diseased germs which react on him, and he must still energize. Struggle and suffering never cease in conscious life, but it can be alleviated only by helping others in a true spirit of non-separateness. In other words, by consciously losing one's belief in the permanency of the "I " being the present form of man which is ever changing.

The true principle of non-separateness is the consciousness that all are forms of the "I," or "Self," filling an appropriate sphere of the Divine Ideal, and, as such, consciously working in all creations of the Divine Father-Mother of us all. No favorite Son, but the nearer the heart, the more required of him. The Lost Prodigal Son in the Christian Bible received the Father's love as well as the so-called favorite son; for, had he not been in the shadow, and now brought to the resplendent light of his presence. He found from bitter experience while wandering from Him in doubt and unbelief that the Light still shines, hidden though it may be by our wilful gropings. The selfseeker will be reclaimed. It is but a misty step on Life's Path which has befogged his mind in his earthly pilgrimage. He will be united to the Father at last, when he cries and energizes in the depths of his soul, "Father, Father, Help my unbelief, and give me Light from Heaven, which alone can lead me to the higher realms near Thyself."

Thus by conscious withdrawal of man to the citadel of his strength, his inner fount, the Divinity, he can partake of all states of consciousness or life, for they interpenetrate, and he becomes the Master or Great Soul.

Evil is but transient, a passing shadow through which the Light of Truth is revealed more or less from the hidden depths of the Great Unknown, Dark Fire of Truth, which feeds the Flame, and can never be reached by the seeker till he is absorbed by the Flame. As has been truly said of old: "It is beyond you because when you reach it, you have lost yourself. It is unattainable, because it forever recedes. You will enter the Light, but you will never touch the Flame (because then you have lost yourself)."

Now, let us apply this philosophy to what is called practical life at the present time.

The mass of people can feel and not express clearly. They are overshadowed by the veil of illusion; hence need a prophet for their mouthpiece. Who shall this prophet be? Who shall competently express their silent aspirations? I answer, the man of heart, and he is a man of genius. Why? Because he does not voice alone his past deeds, but listens to and obeys the Voice of the Silence, by uniting the sensitiveness of the personality or apparent "I " or self, with the potent energy of the life-giving force, the True Self or "I " which blesses all life by its strength and true compassion. In such a genius contradictions of consciousness unite. He is the accepted hero of all ages and races, because in him the races recognize themselves. Such a seer loves the masses blinded and betrayed so often by their leaders. He does not despise their blind gropings and stammering words, eager questionings and bitter complaints. He does not withhold his sympathy and loving thought because his efforts fall unheeded, amid apparent ruin and destruction. He knows the end will be accomplished; that eternal justice, love and liberty will be the goal, though long and dreary the road may appear, if the eyes are persistently cast down instead of uplifted to the everlasting hope.

Such a genius or seer can accomplish what is called sudden changes, can create such an atmosphere of etheric pressure as to burst the bonds of matter or its sheaths and elevate in a mass whole races of people from the slough of despair; not by relieving specially their terrestrial condition, but by so infusing their lot with the Universal, electrifying power of Divine compassion and Brotherly kindness, that no sheath can be insensible to its effects, and peace will gradually settle upon the disturbed vehicle, that it will vibrate in harmony to the Divine influx. This it is to be in touch with the Supreme. "Consecrate then all thy deeds to the Supreme"; says an ancient sage. The collective masses of the people represent the soil, ever responsive to the genius of Divine Love. They represent the innocence and simplicity of the race. The spirit of self-sacrifice is more prevalent there than in the developed self conscious individual, the cultivated egotist, because they have the combined aspects more diffusive. They are nearer conscious Nature. The feuds among common people have their origin in the needs of existence. The same instinct which impels the seeking for life and failing to obtain the material sustenance, is ever impelling to another form of life, which causes restlessness and constant motion, the constant play of the forces which awakens intuition on higher planes unconsciously and brings about the desired result without recognizing the unknown cause. "To the unenlightened is revealed the mysteries as well as to the enlightened," said Buddha. The eternal recompense comes in to every one for the unsatisfied desire. "Still the outward agitation, and listen to the Voice of the Silence," is the advice to those who can read the mysteries. This is the stuff of which come believers, teachers, martyrs. Its most dangerous enemy is that crystallized organization, whether church, sect, party or society, which, in formulating the beliefs of the few, read into its interpretations, the theoretical errors of mind, thus dogmatizing or imposing upon all, the crystallized beliefs of the few, adapted to the present comfort of the few. The light of conscience, the divine right of judgment is within each, and can never be imposed upon another. The Light of the Inner man must unite to the Light in each in a spirit of toleration as diffusive as the sun, in order that the race may progress, even if the atoms composing that race suffer and enjoy. Mutual suffering, mutual joy comes to each alike as he is capacitated to receive. "Open wide the windows and let the Light stream in and out to all!" The seer or initiate understands and is free, careless of so-called past or future; acts in the ever present. To lead the life of the Light in its fullness is to enjoy the present surroundings whatever they may be. Not to accentuate physical, moral or intellectual development by despising either channel. Have free access to all, but be absorbed in neither, else you die or choke the avenues of communication and the synthesis of life on this terrestrial globe is checked. This communication with all that lives will enhance the possibilities of a true form of life which never ceases, whatever the environment, and blesses all within its radii.

This gospel is hard to accept and practice. It is easier grasped by the masses than by the classes, because it is the instinctive law of being unpolluted by any vehicle of limitation. It is conscious law and is active in the people or race though not self-conscious of it. When self-consciousness is aroused in the people by intense desire unifying them in one central idea on any plane of thought, then self-propagation will be manifest, and a breath will destroy the present order like the dynamo. This is where the value of heeding the masses becomes significant. Occasionally a genius flashes from out their ranks who overturns dynasties, as it were in a moment. If these masses then were affected so intently by the God within as to universally manifest in one direction, viz., to burst the bonds of matter or limitation, then pralaya would be the result. All are changed in the twinkling of an eye. Query. Do such pralayas come to a universe on a large scale as come to lesser ones? If so, none can predict the cycle of pralaya to his particular universe within the knowledge imparted by the universal source of all universes, which conies like flashes of electricity to illuminate the earth and break up the sheaths constantly crystallizing on its surface. This constant upheaval and scattering is Heaven's law of eternal vibration in order to bring forth infinite manifestation, for all forms are transient. Why cling, then, so persistently to it, fair mortal? It is but the Immortal Spirit that uses the form and throws it aside when it wills. Death is dissolution of form, but the immortal soul continues to live and is again enclosed in form or vesture according to its character. Dissolution or disintegration of form and rebirth or reappearance of a new form is life. This does not imply an annihilation of character or personality, but an ever-increasing illumination of personality by an abandonment of that which separates it from all that lives. It is the passing of ignorance or latent partial truth into the full vision of truth resplendent, which constitutes Life Eternal.

It behooves us, then, to heed the cry of the infant mass, our brothers in distress. The intuitive power latent in the people is already recognized by well informed thinkers. As thought becomes powerful in action among the people who imbibe mental nourishment through the pores, the inevitable action will follow in due time. What shall be the nature of this action which we all anticipate at present, for the signs are in the air, it is difficult to prognosticate. Let us be as patient as possible, the seeds are sown, the fruit will be gathered, and what shall the harvest be? Hold yourselves in readiness to await the result with calmness and resignation.

In all convulsions of nations, it has been observed there follows a tendency to mysticism. The patriotic fever of a nation, while seeking to preserve its own from the encroachments of the foreign invader, must not deteriorate into the class system as set over against the mass. The people have ever been lovers of home and county till driven by internal dissensions to seek an outlet for this force.

Now, a storm is brewing at present, that threatens an upheaval of present social conditions. It is a transitional period, evidently.

The domination of wealth or capital is felt more and more by the laboring classes so-called. The so-called advantages to the masses claimed by the capitalists in the increase of railroads and facilities for comfort in the homes of the working classes, and the freedom of education and schools, longer hours for rest, etc., are offset by the argument of contrast perpetually presented by the ever fluctuating conditions of the people dependent upon material power. The increase of taxes, so much greater in proportion to the labor in physical directions to labor in mental manipulation of forces, makes the advantages offset the disadvantages and the unskillful gradually are falling behind; hence, a class system. The misery is increasing. Then the hatred of present uncomfortable conditions, whatever the cause, makes the masses desire a change, brought about by the ideal uppermost. Some doggedly submit, some resort to duplicity, or even open warfare, and others withdraw from the strife to their inner selves and seek consolation in mysticism or in sectarianism.

This mysticism has its hold upon the people in awakening a desire for a better form of life than the present, which is evanescent. Here is the dawn of a new order, which comes only when outward transient pleasure is unattainable by ordinary means. Seers are developed to aid the masses in their upward striving, and, in proportion to the misery, hope in the future is awakened and the fear of calamities so woefully anticipated is lulled into peacefulness and the uncomfortableness of the present vanishes to make way for the dawn of the new dispensation. Thus history repeats itself in all nations. The period of rise in material progress is at the expense of the Inner Light. The waning of material progress is accompanied by increasing spiritual energy. The rise in material civilization is always accompanied by a corresponding withdrawal of energy from interior planes, and is the intense manifestation of intuition caused by training it in the material direction, and consequent loss of spontaneity in action by the crystallization of force; and is followed invariably at its height by a waning of material civilization accompanied by an overflow of the spiritual energy in the material universe and a consequent greater opportunity of spiritual insight becoming universally diffused in that race. It is the transitional period which fluctuates in the balance before the withdrawal of the refining process converting the gross physical into the supersensuous condition of the higher sphere and is the crucial test. But the intuition pushes on and bursts the bonds of matter and proceeds on its cyclic journey back to the source of universal diffuseness accompanied by the aroma of its earthly pilgrimage. Hence, the apparent decline of nations. It is only their form and not their spirit that disintegrates, and is ever creating, preserving and destroying. It calls into being other nations and comes forth again in a so-called new nation; for instance America is an example of an old race reborn.

According to the records of Dr. Augustus Le Plongeon, from which I will now quote: "America is an example of not only being well known by all civilized nations thousands of years ago, as is today England; but it has been proved to exert a civilizing influence over the population of Asia, Africa and Europe. We meet with its mark on Japan, Islands of the Pacific, Hindustan, Asia Minor, Egypt, Greece and Equatorial Africa.

"The Ancient Mayas, the descendants of which, now living in Yucatan, Central America, testify to the fact. Their language, MS. and sculptured architecture, lately examined (through Dr. Le Plongeon in his seven years' residence and intimate communion with the natives) reveals startling and convincing proofs of America's influence on language, science and acts in the dim past. The Maya language explains many things in the Christian Bible hitherto unknown, showing that modern nations are awakening to the fact that history is only repeating itself."

The same old, old story of a race reaching a great height of civilization, internal dissensions consequent thereto, resulting in a weakening and downfall of the race; again rising plus the experience acquired, and therefore guarded in its onward evolution to a still more advanced type.

That America, once occupied by a civilized race known to all the East, will heed her past and stem the tide of selfish aggrandizement in her onward march to the development of a new race is the duty for present Americans to strive to make possible.

Let me say right here that a long and interesting talk on the Maya civilization in connection with the modern civilization of America and the formation of a new race might be indulged in at some future time. This is a fruitful field of research as it opens up vistas of ever-widening expanse of thought in the realms of psychological study.

What were the evolutions of mind that served as bases for the fabric of the various religions and philosophies which have existed and still do exist among mankind, is the favorite theme of the advanced thinker and may truly be said to bring about the spirit of toleration among the sons of men in showing them their common origin and destiny.

Pleasure and pain are only caused by allowing our mind to be swayed by the vibration of the matter in which we function. Peace is only temporary, apparent resting; then struggle we must to higher planes of consciousness. To expect flesh and blood to be proof against all wavering is inconceivable. These are but temporary vehicles through which the soul is ever vibrating and building a finer condition or vehicle of spirit. All the people among whom we struggle are living threads, quivering nerves — vibrating like electric wires, but held by invisible hands and attuned to the Divine Harmony of Life Immortal.

Eternal Vibration is the Life of the Soul. Prayer or aspiration is but the "Soul's form of energizing, thereby reaching higher realms of Life Eternal." As has been said by one of old: "Live then, in the Eternal, for you are Eternal, the Invisible, Silent, Deathless Pilgrim, ever in the Present. No Past, no Future, to crush or anticipate, but the Everlasting Now is yours."


Universal Brotherhood

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