I invite you into this meditation to listen with a receptive mind, a heart with equanimity and without judgment. We are going to do a very simple practice within our Gnostic studies. We are going to utilize our capacity for imagination, for visualization. This is the ability of the consciousness to perceive, but not with physical sight. It is to perceive non-physical imagery, the perception of our internal psyche within our mind, within our being. This is a skill that is atrophied in many of us, because we simply never learned how to use it well.
However, all of us have experience with this quality. If you have ever listened to a story narrated to you either by parents or a family member, a teacher, we can visualize and imagine the characters, the dramas, the stories, the events being read to us.
This is the very same skill we are going to utilize, but in this case, I am going to relate to you a Gnostic scripture with very profound significance and import. Listen with your consciousness. See the narrative. Imagine it. Let these words enter your mind and allow your heart, your soul, to evoke whatever images or qualities arise spontaneously and natural to you. Let your own consciousness be the thread that allows you to apprehend the beauty, the simplicity, the insight of this passage.
The following is from The Nag Hammadi Scriptures, the Gospel of Truth:
The gospel of Truth is joy for people who have received grace from the Father of truth, that they might know him to the power of the Word. The Word has come from the fullness in the Father’s thought and mind. The Word is called “Savior,” a term that refers to the work that he has to do to redeem those who had not known the Father. And the term “gospel” refers to the revelation of hope, since it is the means of discovery for those who seek him.
What is Gnosis?
Gnosis (γνῶσις) is a Greek word signifying knowledge from experience. This is a very particular form of understanding. It transcends ideas, beliefs, ideologies, cultures, languages, and even identity. Gnosis is the experiential knowledge of an awakened consciousness. It is what we verify. It is what we understand. It is what we interpret beyond the limitations of concepts, labels, and beliefs. It is the wisdom of unconditioned perception without any filter, without vagueness, obscuration, without any appellations or names we give to any phenomenon we experience.
Humanity has become very interested in what is called The Gnostic Gospels, the Nag Hammadi scriptures and the Dead Sea Scrolls. That passage we read from the Gospel of Truth is one such document of many that reveal an experiential dimension within religion. In this lecture we are going to explain principles and truths that verify what such scriptures teach.
While scholars historically tribute Gnosticism to the first Christians, the reality is that Gnosis, Gnosticism, experiential knowledge of truth, has been present within all religious and mystical traditions throughout antiquity.
A Universal Religion
How do we know this? Let us approach this topic with an allegory. Light is a universal phenomenon. While it exists as it is, people from different cultures use different languages and words to describe light.
Is any culture’s language or words to describe light better than others? Is light by any other name less warm, less brilliant, or less sustaining?
Does it matter what we call light?
Does it function less as a result of a word, a label, or the terms we give it?
Is light any more or less due to conceptual understanding of how light functions? Or does the experience matter most, the fact that all life on earth exists as a result of light?
Light is a cosmic principle and reality. It is a fact all life exists due to light, in every single level of nature. Likewise, all life exists due to divinity without exception, and this is evident when we study religion.
There exist religious forms, movements, and some examples we have represented here by thirteen symbols. Starting at twelve o’clock moving clockwise, we find images of the Baháʼí faith, Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism, Native Spirituality, Sikhism, Taoism, Unitarian, Universalism, and Zoroastrianism. While the language, the customs, the cultures, and the teachers are different and distinct, in synthesis the principles are the same.
Evidence for a Universal Religion
Samael Aun Weor, the founder of the modern Gnostic tradition, stated:
All religions, schools, orders, and sects are precious pearls that are strung on the golden thread of divinity. ―Samael Aun Weor, The Yellow Book
Do you want proof of this? Study the lives of the masters, those who founded religion. What do they all teach? What behavior, what conduct do they embody in their thoughts, in their words, in their deeds, even in their last dying breath? How do they respond to persecution, to hatred, to violence, when they were ridiculed, exiled, tortured, and killed?
I am not referring to any complicated, sophisticated, convoluted theology, some conceptual philosophy or sophistry, because in truth that is really secondary to living an ethical, dignified life. The memorization of concepts regarding ethics and morality really does not matter. Our ways of factually responding to life do.
Do not luminaries like Jesus, Buddha, Moses, Krishna, Muhammed, and others have a brilliant character? Isn’t that what has inspired millions of people to study religion or spirituality, to want to sacrifice for others, to perform good deeds that benefit everyone, including one’s enemies?
What draws people to religion? Isn’t it the light of compassion, understanding, the intelligence that these messengers exemplified in every action and state of their being?
Was it not divinity expressing through them?
Humanity venerates the prophets because their character is luminous, valiant, heroic. Millions of people respect these messengers because they embodied the greatest spiritual discipline and internal work upon themselves. By removing conditions of mind, they became vehicles of divine light.
The Necessity for Tolerance and Religion
This light of divinity is universal. The messengers are different. The languages they utilized to teach are different. Certain metaphysical concepts appear different, but how one lives with intelligence, with wisdom, with conscious love, that is the same.
Despite what dogmatic or sectarian people believe, all traditions are necessary. They all communicate the needs, the qualities, the dispositions of different people, different groups. What is appropriate for one type of person might be inappropriate for another, because the language, the customs, the forms might not be palatable to somebody who has specific needs, much in the same way of having a diet. Therefore, it is wrong to criticize people from other religions or traditions. This is why Samael Aun Weor stated the following:
We violate the law of the tranquil heart when we criticize others. ―Samael Aun Weor, The Aquarian Message.
Religious Symbolism: The Language of Divinity
While religious forms differ, the essential principles of divinity are the same. There is contention among skeptics regarding a universal religion, but these differences in religious forms vanish, dissipate, once we study the language of divinity.
This language is symbolic. It is through symbols, as we see in this graphic. This makes sense because people of different languages, different cultures, different experiences learn in their own way, their own level of understanding. Symbols convey tremendous significance, which can either be interpreted in accordance with our conditioned prejudices, or the clear insight, the intuition of awakened consciousness, the mystical apprehension of internal truth.
Symbols are utilized in our modern world to convey something deeper. This is the purpose of scripture and religion. In our modern world, we are familiar with branding, advertisements, politics, and we even find symbols in traffic signs. Isn’t it true that without traffic signs, streets would become chaotic? The same with the spiritual development of humanity.
Religions are sign posts. They are a map, which, when studied in unison, complement each other. Scriptures contain symbols or allegories that are like that, like traffic signs, that teach us how to navigate life and even in our dreams. Religious symbols convey the wisdom and guidance of the divine. The forms appear different, but the principles they express convey truths that guide us, if we are educated in their universal meaning.
Gnosis: The Synthetic Doctrine
The secret science of the Sufis and the Whirling Dervishes is within Gnosis. The secret doctrine of Buddhism and Taoism is within Gnosis. The sacred magic of the Nordics is within Gnosis. The wisdom of Hermes, Buddha, Confucius, Mohammed, and Quetzalcoatl, etc., etc., etc., is within Gnosis. Gnosis is the doctrine of Christ.
The Degeneration of Religious Traditions
While Gnosis is a very pure, pristine, clarified fountain of spiritual experience, perception, the religious forms containing it have degenerated, decayed.
Do not believe me? Look at all the persecutions, executions, excommunications, and wars waged in the planet in the name of religion. Look how divided people are, attached to the concept of “I am a Hindu.” “I am a Buddhist.” “I am a Jew.” “I am a Christian.” “I am a Muslim.” I believe even Krishnamurti even said how we commit violence against our neighbor while we separate ourselves through cast, through religion, through ideology or creed.
The degeneration of religion, rather the reuniting communities, has produced dissonance, enmity, and what is even worse, bloodshed. Divinity does not cause division. That is not the work of God. Conflict is a result of people who do not understand the principles of their own tradition, because if they understood their own faith, they would perceive divinity. They would know divinity personally, and they would recognize it within any tradition.
It is absurd to adulterate Gnosis with different teachings because the Christian Gospel prohibits adultery. We can drink the wine of Gnosis, (divine wisdom) within a Greek, Buddhist, Sufi, Aztec, Egyptian, etc., cup., yet we must not adulterate this delicious wine with strange doctrines (meaning, the corruption of humanity). ―Samael Aun Weor, The Revolution of Beelzebub
Overtime, each religion has its life and its death. Every tradition is born, unfolds, and decays. This is a natural law, a result of it being exposed to humanity who corrupts the teachings. Therefore, the Gnostic tradition is one such form that explains many traditions, many faiths, the synthesis and the heart of their wisdom.
The solution to religious conflict is not to identify with the exterior of the cup, but to experience and understand the universal principles contained within the pluriversality of religious forms. In this way, we avoid confusion.
However, this requires a lot of study, a lot of instruction, and more importantly, the experience, to really have confidence and realization without doubt.
To know divinity, we must first know ourselves. This is a truth that was very well known in ancient cultures. Yet now, it is terribly denigrated.
The great messengers of humanity all taught the reality of reunion with the divine. They did not believe in divinity. They had personal experience, and religion is the form in which their experience unfolded. Sadly, even religious people think that this phenomenon is exclusively situated in a time long past, that only a few special people were privy to. However, all of them taught how to experience the truth within ourselves.
People today, even when they say they are religious, they are really skeptics. People may believe in God, but if you told someone that you experienced divinity, talked with divinity, just as with any physical person like I am speaking to you, they would think you are crazy. This experiential dimension of spiritual truth was gutted out of religion primarily due to three things:
Humanity has simply never learned the practices that genuinely develop our full potential. Primarily, this was because this knowledge was very well guarded in the past. It was conserved in secret, and it was only given to those who demonstrated their responsibility, their moral caliber, their trustworthiness.
Scriptures are abundant and more available today than they have ever been. Yet this knowledge is obscured within language, within symbols, within ancient codes, which most translators and scholars have simply never been initiated into. They simply do not know, even if they have degrees and very intelligent interpretations of ancient knowledge from a historical or materialistic perspective.
Lastly, our lifestyle and our behaviors have conditioned us to the point to where we cannot experience or know divinity at all. Many people, even so-called spiritual people, believe that divinity cannot be experienced or known, and this is really sad. People fundamentally ignore an essential component of their tradition, of their religion, which is blatantly obvious when you perform a very serious inquiry, or analysis.
The Difference Between Faith and Belief
In synthesis, the greatest misunderstanding that has ever risen is due to a conflation of belief with faith.
We will be very clear. Belief is not faith. The Greek πίστις Pistis literally means “faith” or “trust,” derived from Πειθώ peitho, meaning “to prevail, to grow in confidence or persuasion.” Pistis used to have a very positive connotation. It was confidence born from experience, the trust of the consciousness towards divinity from personal communication.
Due to the conditioning and ignorance of the modern mind, people translated Pistis as “belief,” which basically means to think or feel something, a concept, is true without having experienced it.
Adherence to a devotion, concept, a belief without experience, does not signify knowledge of divinity at all.
You can believe in light. You can learn the terms. You can be very adept at arguing about light and its existence. You can posses an arsenal of words to defend it, to identify it. You might of studied every nook and cranny of intellectual knowledge and scholarship about light. You may know all of its processes, but unless you have escaped the prison, the darkness your own mind, to see the sun for the first time, you simply do not know what light is.
Contrary to conventional beliefs, people like Jesus, Moses, Buddha, Krishna, Muhammed and many others were just like us―no difference. We idolize them because of their achievements, naturally believing that they were due to a gift of nature or a God. They were born special, we think, but this is not true. This is a modern convention that has no basis in nature.
Does a tree spontaneously appear from nothing? Or does it grow gradually from a seed? The same with a perfected being, a living tree of life that can sustain the birds of heaven, as stated in the Christian Gospels.
What happened was that they were initiated into a type of knowledge and practice that allowed them to work upon their own conditioning, and thereby they were able to free themselves. In that way, they can show that to others. They had the potential to become enlightened, like a seed, and since they worked really hard, they achieved it. It is a process.
The Adulteration of Gnosis
The terrible reality is that this teaching of the prophets runs contrary to humanity’s most cherished beliefs, because humanity worships personalities, terrestrial things, concepts, ideologies. The essential message, the light of divinity, has been diluted. The message has been adulterated. It has been sterilized and even castrated in order to fit the prejudices of fanatics and skeptics.
Since people have never experienced or talked with God, they choose to believe these things. They mix the teachings with novelties and impurities that are manmade. This is why it states in the Gospel of John:
The light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not. ―John 1:5
How do we know that humanity is in darkness? It does not comprehend light. Look at the fate of Buddha, who was poisoned. Socrates too. Look at the crucifixion and assassination of Jesus, Moses’ betrayal by the Jewish people, the persecution of Muhammed. People despise divinity, and sadly, ironically, they even use the words of the prophets while stoning them.
This is the terrible irony of humanity. We both love and hate the prophets for the wrong reasons. In essence, all prophets taught that to experience divinity, we must know ourselves, because divinity is inside, as we find in this graphic. The famous oracle of Delphi stated the following:
Man, know thyself, and thou shalt know the universe and its gods. ―Oracle of Delphi
This Delphic maxim or ancient Greek aphorism has been utilized by many people: Socrates, Plato, Pythagoras, and many others.
The unexamined life is not worth living. ―Socrates
These teachings are not about believing in ourselves, feeling good about ourselves, admiring our own achievements, to be filled with vanity, arrogance and pride, or that we are spiritual. In reality, it has to do with reevaluating our relationship to ourselves and to humanity.
Rather than believe in a concept or a tradition without experience, it is better to examine the daily, practical facts of life. The founder of our tradition stated the following:
Gnosis is lived upon facts, withers away in abstractions, and is difficult to find even in the noblest thoughts. ―Samael Aun Weor, The Revolution of the Dialectic
How many of us believe that divinity is real? That we have talked with divinity? That we have concrete factual experience that God is real?
Let me be bold enough to tell you that possessing extensive knowledge of scripture or devotion in the heart towards a tradition does not mean that we know divinity.
Attending a temple, a synagogue, a church, mosque, monastery, giving charity and donations, time and energy in a noble cause, this still does not mean that we have experienced God.
Presuming coincidences or some startling life changing event also does not mean that we know divinity.
This phenomenon is similar to the foam from a crest of an ocean’s waves. They are ephemeral, transient, temporary. They are at surface level of a very deep reality. Concepts are like that. They are at the surface. The ocean is deep, profound, terrifying, and our intellect cannot begin to grasp the profundities of the abyss, the great ocean, an allegory of divinity, the vastness and amazing expansiveness of the divine. Concepts are at the surface. They do not equate with reality.
We can have abstractions in the mind about the most subtle nuances, of philosophy, the intricacies of theology, and yet none of that signifies that we know the truth.
Confronting this reality can make people very uncomfortable. It can distress people, making them disconcerted. Yet we have to be honest. No matter how noble our intentions, we need to rely on the facts. We have to realize and not pretend that we are something that we are not.
Therefore, it is important to be honest with ourselves, because if we think and believe that we know, we will never question our circumstances, our situation, our relationship to it. Real experience is born through a logical confrontation and intimate self-reflection, and this can be very painful, even excruciating, when we seriously look at our foundations.
Yeshua said, Seek and do not stop seeking until you find. When you find you will be troubled, when you are troubled you will marvel and rule over all. ―Gospel of Thomas 2
Truly, genuine spirituality is not comforting. It is very disturbing. It is uncomfortable. It is uneasy. But why?
Have you ever wondered why you do not know divinity? Or have a deeper relationship with that principle? Ask this of yourself.
Why do we not perceive divinity like the prophets? All the ancient mythologies and narratives teach that Adam and Eve talked familiarly with God. The reality is that we do not know why because we have never been educated about the symbols of mythology, the allegories of scripture, what these teachings and traditions actually mean for us now―not as a literal history, but as a moral compass of how to navigate life, the turbulence of existence.
Did you study the Bible? Did not Adam and Eve know divinity but disobeyed? What about Pandora? Did not she get advice from the gods not to the box? Did not Pistis Sophia identify with the lion faced powers, mistaking the thirteenth aeon with the chaos? These are not physical people. These are representations of our psyche, our consciousness, how we once had natural access to states and experiences of the divine, but we chose to engage in behaviors that are contrary to divine law, universal law, immutable laws.
Therefore, our once liberated, happy, intuitive perception became conditioned, became caged, became asleep. We expelled ourselves from Eden, the Hebrew term for bliss, for happiness, because we no longer resonated with the laws of the divine.
The Pearl of Heaven
While the reality of suffering is very unpleasant, we do have the opportunity to learn how to change our conditions of mind, so that we can become free of pain. This is allegorized in every single scripture in different ways, without exception, and this is allegorized in the biblical parable of the merchant who wanted to buy the pearl of heaven. He sold everything he had to purchase this marvelous gift.
You ever wondered what a pearl symbolizes? Do you know where a pearl comes from? This is very meaningful. A natural pearl begins within an oyster shell. An intruder, like a grain of sand, invades the oyster. It enters between the two shells. This enters the protective layer covering the mollusk’s organs.
Is not a pearl a pure elegant thing? A beautiful item? Something that is envied, prized, sought after? Something to be amazed and proud of? Yet this pearl emerges form filth, from the slime, from the gross body of an oyster.
This is an allegory of us. We are like an oyster, figuratively. We have an external shell, which protects us from the world, which is our identity, our values, our race, our gender, our politics, beliefs, our ways of thinking, feeling, and acting―and yet when that sense of self is invaded, when it is threatened, when it is troubled, we feel irritated. We feel angry. We feel challenged. We feel that our life is in danger.
These are moments, crises, ordeals, where we can take advantage of an opportunity to create something greater than ourselves, rather than remain at a level of an instinctive, blind, animalistic creature, an immobile thing that does not know how to move in life with efficacy, with grace. We instead can give birth to something more, the full divine potential of an enlightened being. As the Sufi poet Rumi taught:
If you are irritated by every rub, how will your mirror be polished? ―Rumi
This is why the Gnostic scriptures or the Gnostic scripture The Hymn of the Pearl exists. We recommend you study it. It corroborates what we are saying.
The Tree of Life: Kabbalah
This graphic is known as the Tree of Life. It is a symbol of you in the totality and multidimensionality of your being.
Kabbalah is traditionally known as Jewish mysticism. It is really a map of who we are, where we are at, and where we need to go. It is a tool that we use to interpret different scriptures, different religious traditions, and more importantly, different levels of nature. It is a Western symbol. In the East, you find its equivalent that is Kalachakra, especially within Tibetan Buddhism.
You see these spheres? They are known as סְפִירוֹת sephiroth. It is the plural term for “jewels” and “emanations.” So, again, these are like pearls, beautiful qualities, beautiful principles that we must strive towards and realize.
The highest sephiroth represent qualities of being that are very rarefied, subtle, and divine. There are also places in nature that exist beyond physical matter and expression. The further down this graphic you descend, the more material, concrete, and dense is the quality of being, of dimensionality, of experience.
The Gnostic scriptures refer to these sephiroth as aeons, which emanate and emerge from an unknowable Seity, the womb of cosmic, universal abstraction, the ocean of the uncreated divine. It is the source of all created things at a potential state. It is known as the Abstract Absolute Space.
In Hebrew you find these terms, אין Ain, אין סוף Ain Soph, אין סוף אור Ain Soph Aur, which are Hebrew terms for the Nothing, the Limitless, and the Limitless Light. This is what we strive for in spirituality, the ultimate perfection, the bliss of our true identity, which it is not an individual self, but a cosmic perception beyond duality, beyond suffering, beyond this universe.
We are at the bottom, מלכות Malkuth, which means “Kingdom” in Hebrew. This is the physical world and our physical body. Above we have heavens and below we have inferior levels of nature known as hells. All of us to a degree have experienced aspects of this tree and below.
Have you ever had dreams? Those experiences are within הוד Hod, the world of “Glory” in Hebrew, the emotional or astral world. When we dream, we exist in that dimension. We interact in that dimension. It is not physical, but it is real. It is matter, energy, perception in a more subtle form.
The higher you ascend this graphic, the more subtle nature becomes, the more subtle our perception. To experience those states in a consistent and sustained manner requires development. It requires work, which is why we offer practices in our tradition in order to awaken our full potential [see our course on Dream Yoga and Astral Travel].
Also, we have experiences within the hell realms. This is something that everyone knows. Have you ever had nightmares? Those are experiences, those are living personifications of our own hell. Those are our own states of anger, submerged violence, unperceived murder, terrible crimes, like rape, theft, extortion, etc.
What is really disturbing is that these things are real. I know we like to wake up in our bed and think, “Oh, that was just something insubstantial. It was imaginary.” But the reality is that those are qualities of our own consciousness that we do not perceive in our current level. Those are conditions of mind that are very subtle and deep. We fail to perceive or experience them because we do not direct our attention and investigate those submerged regions of our mind. This can be very distressing.
In reality, what is hopeful is that in this work we can comprehend our deepest traumas and sufferings. We can eliminate them. This is why we study and practice the science of meditation, which we provide in different courses. This is why every single religion like the Greek mysteries portrays the heroes descending into the hell realms in order to redeem the virgin. Orpheus and Eurydice as an example, a symbol of our own consciousness, our own soul, is trapped in states and conditions like pride, vengeance, resentment, lust, gluttony, etc. We need to learn to confront our own reality in order to redeem ourselves. Every religious scripture depicts the struggle of the soul that is free and trying liberate that which is conditioned, so that we can transform our hell into a heaven.
While Kabbalah is a map of our universe, it is especially an expression of who we are, here and now. This is why it states in the Gospel of Thomas:
Yeshua said, if your leaders tell you to “Look, the kingdom is in heaven,” then the birds of heaven will precede you. If they say to you, “It is in the sea,” then the fish will precede you. But the kingdom is inside you and outside you. When you know yourselves, then you will be known, and you will understand that you are children of the living father. But if you do not know yourselves, then you dwell in poverty and you are poverty. ―Gospel of Thomas 3
If we do not know this Tree of life of ourselves from experience, it means that we are spiritually poor. We do not know our full capacity, our full potential. However according to the book of Matthew:
Blessed are the poor (and the beggars) in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. ―Matthew 5:3
Who are these poor or beggars in spirit? It is the meditators. Those who develop their own Gnosis, their own self-knowledge. The term “poor in spirit” is very inaccurate as a translation. Ptōchos, the Greek term of the original New Testament, signifies “reduced to beggary.” It also refers to “begging; asking alms; to be a beggar.” When we learn to beg for knowledge, to receive with an untainted mind, with an attitude of most sincere receptivity, we can really begin to apply methods that are going to revolutionize our experience, our way of being.
This is how we learn to enact practices and disciplines that can transform our conditioned psyche into a liberated, awakened, luminous, and ethical perception. The reality of divinity that once was so distant, becomes prominent and clear.
Yeshua said, Know what is in front of your face and what is hidden from you will be disclosed. There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed. ―Gospel of Thomas 5
We have some resources here at the end of this slide, three books that are very profound: The Great Rebellion, Introduction to Gnosis, and Treatise of Revolutionary Psychology. These are wonderful explanations of the basis of Gnosis: how to acquire that experience for ourselves and how to begin transforming our daily problems, so that we can gain knowledge of the causes of our sufferings so that we can change them. Therefore, we can know divinity perfectly.
At this point in time, I am going to invite you to ask questions.
Questions and Answers
Question: Can you say something about Gnosis and Christianity? Is this esoteric Christianity or taking wisdom from other traditions like Baháʼí.
Instructor: That is a very good question. Gnosis is typically associated with the first Christians, as we stated, esoteric Christianity. We do have our physical school where we receive instructions as in the Gnostic Academy of Chicago, and yet we also have our own church which is an esoteric order that any person can be initiated into when they properly prepared themselves and have been properly prepared. You can learn about that in a book called The Perfect Matrimony by Samael Aun Weor.
As an esoteric Christian school, we also take wisdom from many faiths, because the essence is the same, whether it is Muslim, Sufi, Buddhist, Aztec, Jewish mysticism, etc. They all really share the same roots. However, we do have particular predisposition towards the Gnostic Church. This is the idiosyncrasy in which it is expressed, but this does not mean that we do not explain, appreciate, or unveil the mysteries of different traditions. So, you will find all of the religious forms explained within Gnosis. Yes, in synthesis we have a school and a church.
Study The Perfect Matrimony because that explains that distinction very well. It also explains the wisdom of every single religion in synthesis. I invite you to study that book. It is a great introduction.
Question: I want to ask you if there is a way, an order, to read Samael Aun Weor’s books?
Instructor: That is a very good question. There is not a particular order because the needs, the idiosyncrasies, the character and skillsets of the students are going to be different.
Now, there are certain books that we like to recommend for beginners. I mentioned some books at the end of this presentation that can serve as a beginning. We also have an article on our web site, “Where to Start?” in terms of how one can approach in a systematic way the different writings of our teacher.
The important thing is that we have to follow our heart. Whatever our unique needs are, we should listen to that. If you want some suggestions and recommendations, we can definitely offer that to you.
Question: You mentioned how we all experience the Tree of Life, like Malkuth, the physical body during the day, and Hod, the astral world, during sleep. My question is, where do demons primarily live? Like those mentioned in the writings of Samael Aun Weor, like Jahve, Beelzebub, Lilith, Nahemah, etc.? Would the lunar fifth dimension be the only exceptional answer to these questions, or could it be the astral world, even the mental world?
Instructor: So, if you study the Tree of Life, you find it is multidimensionality of the universe. The astral plane is located in the fifth dimension. It is beyond physicality (מלכות Malkuth in Hebrew). It is a subtle state of internal experience and expression. The hell realms belong to the inferior aspect of the fifth dimension.
The third dimension is our physical world, which is length, width, and height―physicality. We only perceive experience in the physical world in accordance with three dimensions.
Above that you have the fourth dimension known as the sephirah יסוד Yesod. It is the vital or etheric world. It is the fourth dimension, meaning length, width, height, but also hypervolume, which is how a solid progresses or develops within time. In this dimension, it is beyond physicality. It is the energetic aspect that animates physical life. It is more subtle. It is known as hyperspace, four dimensions.
The fifth dimension is Hod and Netzach, the astral and mental worlds. הוד Hod means “Glory” in Hebrew. נצח Netzach means “Victory” in Hebrew. יסוד Yesod means “Foundation” in Hebrew. Really, what we call the hell realms where beings like demons or negative entities reside is the inverted fifth dimension.
So, there are positive and negative aspects to this graphic. There are superior states and there are inferior states. One can experience superior awakened dreams within Hod, but also through nightmares and negative experiences one can enter the inverted fifth dimension, which is the hell realms.
There is a statement by St. Paul (paraphrased) “for we are not fighting against flesh and blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in the dark world and against evil spirits in the heavenly palaces” (Ephesians 6:12). That is a description of the struggle of the soul in the spiritual path. Yes, while there are other entities outside of us who practice negative arts, in reality, what should concern us most is our own psyche, because we all have our own egotistical conditions of mind like anger, pride, fear, vanity, lust, laziness, etc., which constitutes our own demonic consciousness. So, in our studies we learn to protect ourselves, not only from other people, but also from our own mind, which is more important. This is why we study meditation.
For those who are interested in this topic, you can study the first lecture, Basics of Spiritual Defense, in the course Spiritual Self-Defense on our website.
The Gnostic Academy of Chicago
Free online courses, lectures, podcasts, and transcriptions.