The purpose of this course is to explain humanity’s origins, situation, and trajectory. While discovering and analyzing the facts, we may also struggle to reconcile various narratives about who we are, where we’ve come from, and where we are collectively going as a species.
In this process, it is necessary to question our assumptions about humanity’s past. Since mainstream anthropology does not have definite answers to our prehistoric origins, it is even more important to question and entertain different perspectives as new evidence arises. We should also be willing to re-examine what evidence we do have. Otherwise we risk becoming rigid, inflexible, and dogmatic, only seeing in accordance with our presuppositions, even when others kindly point out our error.
A powerful example of this can be found in Göbekli Tepe.
Göbekli Tepe is a Pre-Pottery Neolithic archeological site in Southeastern Turkey. It’s Turkish name means “potbelly hill,” since it is perched atop a limestone mountain ridge. What is most remarkable is that it has the world’s oldest stone megaliths, predating Stonehenge by some 6,000 years. Carbon dating has revealed some of its oldest structures to have been fashioned almost 12,000 years ago. That’s way before hunter gatherers formed pottery, our presupposed ancestors according to mainstream archeological and anthropological narratives.
How is it that the people of Göbekli Tepe could fashion stone megaliths while the local hunter gatherers could not even fashion pottery during the same period? This discrepancy should raise serious questions. For example, the main T-shape pillar in the northern plateau of Göbekli Tepe is 23 ft long by 10 ft wide, weighing around 50 tons. That’s right―I said 50 tons. Such stone monuments depict many animal carvings, which some now argue constitute astrological symbols. Some state that Göbekli Tepe was built to align with astronomical and astrological positions in the night sky, based on its stone carvings and overall placement in relation with the stars.
How could so-called “primitive” people create such astronomical, astrological, and architectural wonders? How is it that such structures were built before agriculture and farming were instantiated? What happened to the people of Göbekli Tepe? Where did they get their knowledge of stone working? Is it true that the same hunter gatherers were capable of erecting the region’s most ancient and monolithic structures? Or was Göbekli Tepe built by people with more advanced knowledge than the local population? Were there distinct groups of people during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic era, one responsible for creating 50-ton megalithic structures and the other for mere hunting? We have to ask ourselves what is really going on here.
Göbekli Tepe was not the working of unsophisticated people. It’s quite the contrary. What this demonstrates is that our conventionally accepted timelines for human development are wrong. What’s annoying about Göbekli Tepe for mainstream anthropologists is that its structures had to be based on advanced knowledge. Such knowledge doesn’t emerge out of nowhere. It has to be cultivated and transmitted, even over the course of thousands of years before they take their incipient form.
The Definition of Gnosis
As evidenced by our line of questioning, this is why we rely on our own experience.
The Greek term Gnosis signifies conscious experience of reality. It is direct observation of the facts, based on knowledge acquired from all our senses. This is no different than the technical definition of empiricism, which is a theory of knowledge derived from sensory experience. What we perceive excludes, justifies, or certifies what we fundamentally know. In other words, observation or experience of the facts produces or demonstrates genuine certainty.
This is why, in our tradition, we leave speculation, theory, and assumption behind. We verify through experience, validating all forms of evidence. This is why Samael Aun Weor wrote in The Revolution of the Dialectic:
Gnosis is lived upon facts, withers away in abstractions, and is difficult to find even in the noblest of thoughts.―Samael Aun Weor, The Revolution of the Dialectic
The physical senses can provide us with specific but limited domains of data. It is not complete. It is not whole. Nor does it access the totality of all there is to perceive. This is because our psychological senses are more profound, even though they are currently in an embryonic or potential state.
We know that thoughts and emotions exist, even if we cannot see them with physical eyes. We know thoughts and feeling exist because we experience them. We sense them through our psychological senses. Such senses are not physical. They are multidimensional. You can even prove this to yourself.
Ever walk down the street and sense someone staring at you? You turn, look and―as you sensed it―there is your friend looking to get your attention. How can you even possibly know? And yet it happens.
Likewise, ever have a dream? Why are you interacting with different persons in your dreams if they are not real? If they have no substance, essentiality, or existence? Even dreamscapes can change in accordance with our thoughts, emotions, and impulses. This shows us that our inner thoughts, emotions, and desires have substantial reality.
Despite the fact that we think and feel, do we understand the origins of thought? Do we know where emotions emerge? This is not a philosophical question. It is an experiential and practical one. Have you ever observed your thoughts? Have you ever looked at your emotions, where they come from, how they sustain, and how they pass? Do we fully understand the factors that lead us to the expression of the abstract, the undefinable, the psychological?
Do we really think, or do ideas merely come to us? I’m sure many of us have had this experience. You are trying to solve a problem. After deliberating for hours, we distract ourselves for a moment until, finally, it hits us. We know. We receive an understanding or solution.
Such an example proves to us that the human being is much more than the ability to think. We currently think that thought is the pinnacle of human achievement because animals don’t have it. Even if thought were the ultimate expression of humanity, then we should definitely know it’s origins. We should examine our experience, look to understand the patterns that shape our perceptions, and look to expand and clarify them. Because in reality, all of the ancient traditions across the world have emphasized, like the Oracle of Delphi, that there is more to us than we typically assume or aspire:
Know thyself, and thou shalt know the universe and its gods! ―Oracle of Delphi
The Four Pillars of Gnosis
This experiential knowledge of divine truths, as expressed throughout all of the great civilizations of antiquity, can be didactically understood through four components. These are often called the four pillars, because a pillar supports the roof of any sacred temple, such as in Greece. When any one of these pillars is missing, the whole structure falls. They work together, not in isolation. These are the pillars of science, mysticism, art, and philosophy.
All ancient cultures once expressed their knowledge of the universe and the individual in accordance with these four pillars. In truth, such civilizations were essential scientific, mapping and diagramming the stars, while at the same time appreciating such wonders through mystical aspirations, symbols, and language. They even erected great pyramids and sanctuaries, wondrous works of art, which encode―in their symbolic statues, carvings, and edifices―the secret philosophy of actualizing our complete and divine potential.
It is only when civilizations degenerate that these four pillars break, corrode, and separate into ruin. Science without mysticism is insufficient. Mysticism without science is blind. A culture without great art loses its moral compass. A tradition without philosophy stagnates.
By expanding our own capabilities, by knowing the origins of thought, emotion, and desire, by seeing that which is eternal within the individual, we learn to appreciate, understand, and properly interpret the great megaliths of the ancient world. We learn to intuit the purpose and message of divine architecture. We also learn to access the very same source that inspired such cultures to embody heaven on earth.
A Universal Religion
Psychological introspection allows us to see the origins of religion. The original term is Latin, signifying reunion with the divine. This is the Western term for Yoga, which is its Sanskrit equivalent. All religions are expressions of divinity, whose teachings codify in accordance with the particular idiosyncrasies, temperaments, languages, and cultures of their messengers.
We can say that thought is the means by which such wisdom was articulated. It takes thought to create something. However, thought is a vehicle. It is a means. It is not the origin, the author of creative genius, which in turn gave rise to the multitude of architectural wonders of the world. While thought is the chisel and hammer that shapes the ancestral stone into form―through the planning and design―the initial wisdom or principle guiding the architect is not thought. It is something more abstract and subtle.
There are many contemporary persons who believe that thought is divine. They are wrong. Thought is the vehicle by which our inner world expresses and becomes concrete. The divine genius of humanity is not the mind. The mind can plan and orchestrate, but it cannot drive, inspire, or command.
Thought is the medium of conscious will, the capacity to do, to act in the world. However, even will is superseded by the intuition, the immediate comprehension or understanding of the truth, which is later eclipsed by thoughts, plans, ideas, speculations. In the example of receiving inspiration, when you receive that sudden knowing, you did not need to think. That insight originated from the divine author within. This principle of divine inspiration is what was fully developed in ancient humanity, hence the magnitude and power of their great social machinery, whether from Greece and Rome, to Jerusalem and Egypt. They not only mastered their own material abilities, but also their psychological and spiritual ones. Therefore they articulated universal wisdom through the particulars of time and place, such as with the Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish and Christian religions.
All religious traditions and cosmogonies speak about the creation of the human being, as we see here Jehovah forming Adam. This painting from the Sistine Chapel is not merely a physical retelling of history. It is a psychological creation story.
The term anthropos signifies “human being.” Logos in Greek indicates the divine Word, the manifested and articulated will of divinity. This word constitutes the suffix -ology within the term anthropology. Therefore, anthropology in its authentic sense is the study of humanity’s relationship with the divine. While we study diverse cultures, societal systems, and ways of life, we do so with the understanding that ancient civilizations strove to express the Logos on earth, within every thought, word, and deed.
While we possess the outward form of a human being, it is evident from our psychological and collective behaviors that we have not mastered our complete human potential. This is evidenced by our modern propensities towards deficiency and corruption, exemplified by the last two World Wars and humanity’s growing dissatisfaction with our current state of affairs.
It is a mistake to believe that our present humanity is the apex of an ever evolving and perfecting arch. This assumption is based on a misinterpretation of ancient traditions, that we are already true human beings fashioned by divine agency. We have mistaken a symbol of possibility for established reality.
Evolution and Devolution
The fact of the matter is, we are not the product of evolution alone, but devolution as well.
To explore the origins of humanity, we must deeply comprehend these mysteries. This term evolution signifies progress, advancement, and development. We find evolution within the plant that germinates, grows, and matures. However, it soon experiences the inevitable consequence of its own genesis: decay, disintegration, or devolution.
Devolution signifies the return to a primeval state. We emerge from the seed of our parents and eventually return to the earth. When someone becomes old, they devolve, degenerate, and decline. These laws of evolution and devolution are eternal. They apply to the embryo that becomes a human being, then a corpse; and even magnifies in terms of resolution: entire civilizations, ecosystems, planets, stars, and galaxies. Everything that is born must die in accordance with its allotted conditioning and time, no matter the scale.
There is no evolution without devolution. There is no birth without death. There is no good without evil. All of this is represented by Yin and Yang in Taoism. We also find this cycle demonstrated by this graphic.
All life evolves to a defined point, then devolves and decomposes. In our present state, we have evolved from inferior kingdoms of being. Beneath our present state are inferior levels of nature, mapped by the mineral, plant, and animal kingdoms. The souls of diverse life forms have progressed and developed throughout these states for many millions of years, acquiring necessary experiences and knowledge in accordance with cosmic transmigration. However, while we are the apex of mechanical nature (since it took no effort for us to get here), we risk entering the opposite dynamic, which is devolution.
It is very evident that our present humanity―rather than taking advantage of our human bodies to transcend suffering and master our complete and divine potential―is devolving, decaying. Our society is crumbling because the individual, rather than comprehending and eliminating the causes of discord, is instead exacerbating them. The ancients never ignored these two fundamental principles.
The True Human Being
This proves to us that we are not complete. The true human being is distinct from us. We utilize this term out of respect for others, even when it doesn’t apply to the vast majority of people who populate the Earth. This is because a real human being is one who’s mind, manas in Sanskrit, is united with Hum, the spirit, the Being, with the divine.
A true human being is a Moses, a Buddha, a Jesus, a Krishna, a prophet. To use a Buddhist metaphor, they rose like a beautiful lotus out of the mud of psychological pollution. They are a divine jewel, a precious stone on the crown of the saints, whose minds are purified of all affliction. Their actions demonstrate the unitary nature of perfected being.
It is these great masters who inspired the architects, artists, sculptures, painters, and builders of antiquity, evidenced by numerous flood stories depicting the guidance of superior beings who instructed the survivors of great catastrophes. We study their influences throughout the past so as to wisely guide and orient our afflicted hearts. As you can deduce, these prophetic beings are the exception, not the norm.
Apes and Devolved Species
As evidenced by the kingdom of the apes.
When humanoids degenerate, they devolve. It is true that humanity has a common ancestor with apes. However, science mistakenly assumes that humanoids evolved from apes. In fact, it is the other way around, as demonstrated by the Qur’an:
When they were insolent concerning that which they had been forbidden, We said unto them, “Be ye apes, outcast.” ―Al-Araf 166
Apes are devolved humanoids. When any humanity degenerates, when their cultures and societies crumble, their ethics wane, they become decrepit, insolent, cruel. The Neanderthals, among numerous others, are degenerated humans. So are many other anthropoids. This explains how there existed, side by side, advanced cultures like Göbekli Tepe alongside more primitive hunter gatherers. Those humanoids that did not completely degenerate themselves established their civilizations while others entered into decline. Some groups rise, and others fall within the wheel of the centuries.
When we study Gnostic Anthropology, we also consider the name of humanity’s relationship with the cosmos. The Greek word cosmos κόσμος means universe or order. Likewise, the Greek λόγια Logia indicates communications of divine origin.
The reason why ancient cultures depicted open communication with the divine, with the heavens, with the gods, was because they were speaking from experience. They were not superstitious, consulting dead statues through vain ritual observance. Their cultures deeply venerated the gods because they spoke directly with them.
How did they do it? They established psychological order within their interior so that through meditation, they could see, perceive, contact, and consult the spiritual masters. By becoming a perfected cosmos or unity within, one has the basis upon which to build a temple of authentic spirituality, whereby heaven and earth commune. The ancients depicted this truth with their architecture, since these represented how a true human being can properly orient his physical body, psychology, and spirit with the highest order of things.
The Tree of Life
This is why we study the Tree of Life. While commonly associated with Kabbalah, or mystical Judaism, it is a symbol or map of our cosmos, both external and internal. These spheres represent different modalities or being, different levels of nature or perception, from the most material and concrete below to the most subtle and abstract above.
Kabbalah comes from the Hebrew word קבל Kabbel, which means “to receive.” It is a genuine form of experiential knowledge, authentic Gnosis, whereby the consciousness, in meditation, learns to awaken to its true nature and perceive the multidimensionality of the cosmos. We do so through the science of Dream Yoga and Astral Travel. This is how we verify from our experience the realities of divinity beyond our physical limitations. This is how we can investigate the origins of our humanity and countless others, when we develop that very same psychological introspection into the core of our being.
Advanced Civilizations, Root Races, and Rounds
Many anthropologists and archeologists refute the possibility of previous humanities because it opens the door to a deeply threatening realization: our current civilization is not the most advanced our planet has ever seen.
Gnostic Anthropology describes how our current civilization, while making exponential technological advancements, is not the pinnacle. In fact, while boasting of our contemporary medicine, laws, and materialism, we are in truth primitive in comparison with the ancient societies allegorized and mythologized in the world’s oldest scriptures and traditions.
Our humanity is not the most advanced our planet has ever seen. There have existed races and peoples whose entire civilizations were either wiped out or obscured by the distance of the past. Again, the Qur’an and many other scriptures affirm this. Likewise, our earliest humanities have subsisted in different dimensions before condensing into this physical world.
This initially explains how modern science cannot find sufficient physical remnants of these past civilizations, all of which are remembered and recited by the ancient religious and spiritual traditions of antiquity. Everyone has heard of Atlantis, some of Lemuria, fewer regarding the Hyperboreans and Polar (Protoplasmic) Races. These are races and histories we can explore within the higher worlds of Kabbalah when we know how. By entering meditation and awakening within the internal dimensions, which we always access when we dream, we open up the door to reviewing the ancient histories of humanity.
Likewise, such civilizations existed in other cosmic eras, sometimes referenced as Rounds. We exist in the Terrestrial Round, the universe manifested within physical matter with the purpose of producing genuine, authentic, and perfected human beings. The universe, which is a cosmos or defined order, has the mission to generate integrated and perfected human, divine masters. This is the central goal by which entire spiritual and ancient civilizations thrived, propagated, and subsisted. They knew that we have the potential to become like the divine. Also, by learning about our planet’s true history―not the assumptions or correlations of materialistic hypotheses―we will know how consciously we can understand ourselves. We learn to orient our trajectory as well for the betterment of self and humanity.
Astronomy and Astrology
Let us get into some of the many avenues or domains by which we study ancient cultures through Gnostic Anthropology.
Göbekli Tepe is an amazing example of how the ancients knew the stars. Its architects were keen to map, diagram, encode, and imitate the language of the skies. They understood that the constellations were the abode of spiritually enlightened beings, not just in our physical dimension, but in higher dimensions. Therefore they demonstrated not only superior navigational capacities of a physical type, but also spiritually: such individuals could astral travel and directly communicate with any sidereal genie or master.
Also, many ancient peoples were not as degenerated as we are today. They were more open to accept the reality of conscious intelligences governing any celestial body or entity, because they could directly contact such beings internally. Not only were their physical accomplishments mind-blowing, but truthfully, such feats pale in comparison with the level of spiritual work required to experience and know these realities for themselves. Their knowledge of astronomical science is small compared to genuine astrology: the art of communicating with the Logoi or divinities of the stars.
We marvel how the ancient Egyptians could build the Pyramids of Giza. Mainstream anthropology and archeology does not have an adequate explanation for how such structures were built, since a single pyramid stone alone weighs 2.5 tons. We know within the Gnostic tradition that such pyramids are Atlantean, including the Mayan pyramid of Chichen Itza.
Even the Nahuatl language bears the Atlantean prefix -atl, signifying water. This is because the Atlantean civilization was swallowed by the waters of the Atlantic Ocean, according to traditional accounts. Atlantis was the root of many powerful civilizations, which some brave individuals are now willingly acknowledging given the preponderance of otherwise unexplainable evidence.
The Greeks, Egyptians, Mayans, Aztecs, and many others encoded within their architecture the essential truths of every religion. Every March 20th to the 21st, when the sun begins to go down to the horizon, numerous shadows appear on one of the main faces of the pyramid and Chichen Itza. These are often denominated as the serpents of light of the Pyramid Kukulkan, the feathered serpent. Such a winged serpent has many references within Zoroastrianism, Mexico, and even the Bible. This is because all of these marvels point towards a universal science of mastering ourselves, symbolized by the energy of the serpent Kundalini, the Fire of Pentecost, the brazen serpent that Moses raised upon a staff to heal the afflicted Israelites in the wilderness.
The Greeks and Romans beautifully depicted the perfection of the human body as correlative of spiritual achievement. The gods and goddesses, like Athena, Zeus, and Hermes, symbolize how divine abstractions, the expressions of spiritual compassion, reverence, and supremacy, come to favor the great spiritual heroes, those that willingly go to war against themselves to embody the highest virtues. They do so through working with Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent, or Kukulcan, as we mentioned, synonymous with Athena, the power of the Divine Mother, who helps us resolve the riddle of the Sphinx: what does it mean to be a true human being?
A Sphinx, as we see in Egypt, is the amalgamation of the four elements, which have direct correlations with our psychology and physiology: air (the mind), fire (emotions), water (sexuality), and earth (physicality). As the Egyptians taught, by mastering these elements in ourselves, we in turn become enlightened ones, transforming ourselves for the benefit of humanity.
The Sphinx has the face of a man, the hooves of a bull, the paws of a lion, and the wings of an eagle, representing the four elements. By mastering these elements in ourselves, we in turn become divine.
Here we see images of The Last Supper, The Birth of Venus, the Aztec Sun Calendar, and the Egyptian God Anubis, hierarch of destiny and the governor of souls.
What these diverse artistic works have in common is their articulation of spiritual archetypes. They represent how divinity teaches, instructs, consoles, guides, and governs the spiritual candidate who seeks illumination. Art has always been used to articulate (as even evidenced by this word of speaking into being), the essential truths of religion, reunion, yoga. Like Venus, we must give birth to the force of love. Like Christ, we must endure our Passion. Like the Egyptian defunct entering the world of the dead, we must settle our account before the divine tribunals of cosmic justice. And like the Sun Calendar of Tonatiuh, we must measure and prophesy the future of humanity.
We even find Gnosis represented within drama. There are many stories throughout antiquity, even within English Literature and the Greeks, that represent these divine principles.
All the ancient peoples knew that these dramas depict eternal truths. They show us the way to know ourselves and to help humanity through their symbols, allegories, depictions, dramatizations, plots, tragedies, comedies, dramas. They illuminate the way by which a human being becomes perfect. The ancient Greek theaters, the pantheons, the Rose and the Globe of Britain, where Shakespeare’s knowledge was disseminated to the public, represent the secret philosophy of a divine humanity.
We study all these forms of art and drama in conjunction because they work together to teach us a unified science, a divine philosophy, a mystical art.
We have here an image of Shakespeare and Dostoevsky. We study their works, as well as many artists and writers, because their knowledge is refined. It is synthesized. It is profound.
Manly P. Hall mentions in The Secret Teachings of All Ages that William Shakespeare was an initiate. He has other theories too about the origins of this author―and perhaps the pen name “Shakespeare” as being not an authentic individual, but a substitute, a name for someone else, because this knowledge was meant to be given to humanity to teach how to change.
We look to the writings of Dostoevsky especially for his deep philosophical, psychological, and mystical truths. Anyone who reads Crime and Punishment clearly sees the moral dilemma of our contemporary humanity, whereby those who feel they are above the law in turn commit atrocities, but never can escape their own conscience, the voice of morality that speaks to the heart of every human being. It is this voice which many suffocate in themselves, who ignore, who do not question or implore within their very being to know origin of truth, the origin of the divine.
Music and Dance
We also find gnosis within the great works of music, dance, and theater within the ancient world, but also even within our contemporary society. We see here an image of the Sufis, one who is from the Mevlevi Sufi order founded by Rumi playing on a Ney, a wind instrument, a pipe or flute, which represents the longing of the soul to unite with the divine, with the truth.
We also see the ancient dances of Aztec Mexico. Those powerful ritual dances that these initiates of the Aztec pantheon would perform in observance and remembrance of the divine. There are still many Gnostic groups in this day and age who are performing the Aztec dances, which are a sacred form of ritual. They encode in their movements, their dance, their ritual, their liturgy, representations of how the solar divine entities and cosmic abstractions enter within the human heart. They charge the human heart. They inflame the soul.
They represent cosmic truths, such as the dancers revolving around the center of the drum, the huēhuētl representing Huehueteotl, who I believe is a sun deity. These dancers dance around the sun, just as the aspiring soul dances and looks to the heights, the truth, for the source of strength and inspiration.
Likewise the Sufis when they dance, the Mevlevis as well, they perform many dances that are very sacred. They represent the movement of the planets, how the Earth and many other worlds gravitate around the Sun. Likewise our soul gravitates around the Sun, spiritually speaking.
We also see here an image of an opera house because many great composers of the classical traditions have also created works of art embodying the divine. We have given a course on our website called The Secret Teachings of Opera where we explain some pieces representing the eternal truths and secret philosophy mentioned by Manly P. Hall, Samael Aun Weor, and many others. We study all of these forms of art, dance, and music in conjunction, because opera, as well as many other art forms, forms of music, theater, etc., teach us who we really are.
For Further Study
In conclusion, we have two books that you can reference that go into much more detail than we have provided here today. We have Cosmic Teachings of a Lama as well as Gnostic Anthropology by Samael Aun Weor. These two texts will teach you about many essential elements of religion but also how we in our Gnostic tradition study the ancients, how we study ourselves, and how we interpret the great works of art, mysticism, philosophy, and science of the ancient world.
At this point in time, I would like to open up the floor to questions.
Questions and Answers
Question: How and why are there different forms of Christ, like beings that appear throughout different religions and mythologies before the birth of Jesus? For example, Osiris’ resurrection story in the Egyptian religion, and other examples reflect this truth.
Instructor: This is because Christ was not only manifested within Jesus of Nazareth. Christ is an eternal principle represented by the Solar Logos, the Sun, but also etymologically S-o-n. There’s a beautiful correlation there.
The Christian religion is not the only doctrine that teaches about Christ. Other religions use different languages, different symbols, different forms to teach the same principles. Whether or not people see the correlations or understand them is another thing. Obviously Osiris is a Christ-figure, and many elements of the Egyptian religion were subsumed but also assimilated within Christianity. We know that Christianity as a religious form is the amalgamation of Greek dialectics or philosophy, Egyptian mysticism, and the Hebrew Kabbalah.
All these traditions capture, in their respective ways, these mystical truths. They just expressed them in a different way, in accordance with the language, the diction, the symbols, the temperaments, the ideologies, the psychologies of different people. So let us not get caught up with the outward forms. It is better if we look at what they represent. They are like sign posts. They are like flags. You do not literally look at the American flag and say, “There are literally fifty stars somewhere and thirteen stripes.” That would be silly!
Many people like to historicize Christ, which obviously he was a living, physical being, but he came to live within his body of flesh and bones the sacred drama of the Inner Christ, which, if you’ve studied the life of Quetzalcoatl within Aztec mythology, has the same teaching. Quetzalcoatl even carries a cross. He bears the same Passion.
Bacchus, the god of wine within the Greek myths, was, interestingly enough, transmuted into the symbol of Christian miracle. Jesus’ first miracle was transforming water into wine. I believe Bacchus or Dionysus, according to the Roman terminology, was also born on the same day as Christ on the Winter Solstice.
So all of these signs point towards the same road. It is best not to get caught up in the outward forms, but to look at what all of these traditions are pointing to because they are universal. They are a universal religion.
Question: As one delves into their own inferno, one may notice certain structures of thought, emotion, and concepts breaking down, sort of like God is working within by breaking down the intellectual animal, sort of like bits of the self are dying or being undone, like air eroding down a stone pillar. Would this be considered part of devolution or involution? Evolution, devolution? All the above? Is each one in each? Clearly something to meditate on, but do you have any insights to share?
Instructor: Certainly! As we will explain later in this course, the force of involution is when spiritual potential enters into materiality. So going back to the image that we showed about the cosmic rounds and the Tree of Life, the different root races that we were demonstrated for all of you to see, we saw in that symbol how the spirit enters into matter throughout diverse cosmic eras called Kalpas, I believe, or cosmic days: Mahamanvantaras, better said. Involution is when the universe materializes into the physical world, enters into states of matter, complexity, density, and expression.
Evolution is when the consciousness, embodying mineral states, graduates through many millions of years into a plant body. Likewise, after many millions of years, that consciousness evolves within the plant kingdom, and also throughout many ages, the consciousness transmigrates and gains experience, evolving throughout different animal states within the animal kingdom, until finally reaching the humanoid state.
Devolution occurs when the humanoid does not change. Devolution occurs when the humanoid, the intellectual animal to use Samael Aun Weor’s terminology, the intellectual soul, chooses not to remove, from his or her psychology, that which is animal, in order to transcend and enter the kingdom of the divine beings.
So basically when the soul degenerates, when it devolves, it enters inferior states, inferior bodies and regresses, going back into its primeval state. This is known as hell within religions. It is a recycling plant. It is where souls who do not wish to willingly remove that which is impure from their psychology must enter, so that they can be cleansed. It is a part of nature.
The breaking down of the intellectual animal, when thought, emotion, and desire are deconstructed, are disintegrated, is known as the process of devolution. It takes a long time depending on the magnitude and intensity of that individual’s defects. So that is devolution, and the apes in the animal kingdom are devolved humans. They were once people. That is why there are some remnants of intelligence demonstrated within any ape, any monkey, any orangutan, any gorilla. They are devolving souls. They will eventually be recycled and reprocessed by nature.
So that is the difference. Involution: the spirit enters matter. Evolution: the soul develops, learns, and grows within the inferior kingdoms until becoming humanoid. If that soul does not wish to enter the higher dimensions as a spiritually perfected being, they enter devolution, and will disintegrate slowly within the different kingdoms, the soul within the interior of the Earth, until finally becoming a purified soul, an Essence, but virginal, a spark without mastery.
If the human being decides to become something superior, they have the option to enter the path of the Sphynx, the riddle of the Sphynx, and even if you have studied the sacred arcana of the tarot, you find that in Tenth Arcanum, representing precisely this wheel of destiny, this cycle of evolution and devolution, the initiate, the soul, has the option to transcend that wheel. But first he or she has the answer the riddle of the Sphynx: “What is a true human being?” By conquering the four elements―represented by first, the eagle, which is air, thought; fire, which is the lion, emotion; water, which is the man, sexuality; and the bull, which is earth, the body―only then can one master those elements and become something superior. That is the difference.
Question: How can one find answers to the origins of archaeological structures in the astral plane?
Instructor: You can ask your Being. You can say, “My God, my Being, my Beloved, show me what this archeological site is teaching to humanity!” You can even ask your Being to take you to those sites where they will show you internally what they are [through Dream Yoga and Astral Travel]. You can go to Egypt where, internally in the astral plane, the Pyramids of Giza are active. They are not merely dead stone structures as we see them physically. In the internal planes, they are living, luminous, divine temples. They are inhabited by the masters of Egypt who self-realized in the past. They can invite you into their precincts where you will be instructed about their mysteries. Many masters and initiates have entered that temple.
Likewise there are many other archeological structures, which have physical ruins in our current dimension, that have a deeper spiritual purpose. You can investigate that by asking your Being to take you to those places, so that you can see what is actually there. You will see things that you will not see physically, obviously. The Pyramids of Giza have a different appearance than they do physically. Obviously, physically they are shattered remnants corroded with time. But internally they are amazing, terrifyingly divine structures. Those places are very sacred, and we have to be very humble in order to receive guidance and to be allowed in.
But if you are sincere, you try, you work, you aspire, it will happen for you. Just be patient.
Ok! If there are no more questions, we can conclude. I thank you all for joining us, and if you wish to access more lectures on this topic you can visit our website, especially the course Gnostic Anthropology and Cosmology. We will also be discussing more topics that go into greater detail regarding the ancient histories of humanity, the different root races, the different rounds in which our universe is manifested, but also exploring the ancient monoliths and architectural wonders of the world that teach these truths. So I thank you all for coming!
The Gnostic Academy of Chicago
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