Many are being attracted these days by teachings about the hidden or occult side of life, because of being stirred by forces within themselves causing strange dreams and inner experiences and for which they naturally seek explanations. Many, without understanding what is taking place, are unfolding psychic or spiritual faculties as a natural growth, due largely to the powerful new spiritual force now active and affecting the whole earth and all upon it, and symbolized by the sign of Aquarius, a man walking across the skies pouring water from a pitcher; for we are now passing out from under the sign of Pisces, the fishes, and entering the Aquarian Age, which means that we are at the close of one Dispensation and that a new one is beginning. We have been trying in preceding articles to prepare the minds of those who are accompanying us by telling them of their complex natures; teaching what is the soul, its life and its home, its relation to the human mind, and the necessary control of the personality the soul must obtain, through the mind, before the soul can accomplish what it came into physical embodiment to do.
Most of the earnest ones now realize that the outer man- the personality-is nothing but an instrument which the soul, under the direction of the Higher Self, is training to that end; and therefore it is not strange that many such are becoming more or less conscious of the inner man, the soul, and are being given glimpses of the inner life, the life of the soul.
And so we strongly feel that the time is come when much of the mystery that previously surrounded this inner life, due principally to ignorance of the definite part this life plays in man's spiritual growth, be entirely cleared away. And so we are making this a phase of our work. The so-called "occultist" in the past has had much to do with creating so much mystery about this inner life. Occult means "covered from sight, concealed, hidden," and an occultist in its true sense would be one who studies and acquaints himself in practical and useful ways with the hidden or invisible side of life. So that everyone who is studying these teachings then is really an occultist. But so much stigma has attached to the word "occult," because of its being applied to teachings and practices of a questionable character, which are not serving and enlightening mankind, but are instead making the information gained serve selfish ends by giving it out in a perverted or veiled form, that many sincere students are repelled by anything bearing the name "occult."
Another reason is that otherwise worthy students who have gained a certain amount of knowledge of the inner life and its laws and the accompanying power such knowledge gives, and who pride themselves on being "occultists," look down upon other students, those of the mystic and devotional type, and particularly those who are declared followers of Christ's teachings, deeming such as still on the emotional plane and not yet progressed to the stage the occultist has reached, where mind is supreme.
We will not enlarge upon this peculiarity of "occultists," for those who read probably have had personal experience with such. But we would caution those who are convinced by an inner knowing of Spiritual realities and who perhaps repudiate the claims of such occultists, believing them to be not of Christ, not to let pride enter and affect them in any way. For all the knowledge and power that the occultist has gained through mental study and proven logic must later be gained-if not in this lifetime, in a succeeding one-by those who have found God and Christ within themselves, so that the Master within may use such knowledge and power for the purpose for which alone they are given; while the occultist must "come back" with all his intellectual knowledge and power and devote it solely to the use of the Loving One within, if and when he awakens to His Presence and consciously waits upon Him there. And hearken! Both these stages are of equal importance- neither is higher than the other; for both will be superseded by a stage that will succeed them-when they are both given over wholly to the Master's use.
We mean just that; for not until all knowledge, all power, all consciousness of self and separation is merged into the Consciousness of the Master, the I AM, the Christ Self, so that there are no longer two-the higher and the lower self, but only One-the Master Self, neither the occultist or the mystic has found what his soul is seeking and what eventually he will find.
And here is another great truth that all must realize: all faculties and all powers given to man are good-when developed and used unselfishly and for the good of others. This includes all psychic gifts that have unfolded naturally in one who is earnestly trying to live the higher life. When they unfold in such it is for a good purpose, which all should strive unceasingly to learn by dedicating them to Christ and asking that He teach and guide them in their proper use.
We will again state that the inner life is just as real and just as natural a manifestation of the human consciousness as is the physical life, for in reality they are one-they are but the inner and outer phases of the one life of the soul; in fact the outer could not be if the inner soul phase did not exist. This means that the astral phase of the inner life is just as natural as the mental or the physical phase, for just as long as the human soul has in its nature any emotions and any desires, good or bad, they must express on the astral plane, and the astral plane will be just as real a place to the soul as is the physical plane, to one whose inner senses are open to the astral-that is, to the emotional or desire world. We tell you this that all may know that what is unfolding in them is a result of the spiritual quickening taking place in everyone, and that they may view it in a common sense way. And it is a spiritual quickening, for all is spirit, because all is God, and there is nothing that is not a part of Him and is not taking place in His Consciousness.
Never forget that, and therefore seek to learn His purpose in everything that is coming to you. He permits or sends it only for good. When you find that good you will learn its purpose, and will begin to co-operate with God and good, and that good then actually becomes yours.