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THE ASTRAL WORLD by Swami Panchadasi Table of Contents: 1. The seven planes 2. Astral regions 3.

eality of the astral !. Passing the border ". Some lower s#b$planes %. &isembodied so#ls '. Scenes of the astral (. )ife and wor* on the astral +. ,igher planes and beyond 1-. The astral light 11. Astral .ntities CHAPTER I. THE SEVEN PLANES. .very st#dent of occ#ltism/ from the h#mblest beginner to the most advanced p#pil/ has a f#ll reali0ation of the wonders of that strange plane of being *nown as The Astral 1orld. The beginner/ of co#rse/ has not the privilege of act#ally viewing life on this plane/ e2cept/ perhaps/ in e2ceptional cases/ or #nder e2traordinary circ#mstances. 3#t even he finds constant reference to the s#b4ect in the treatise his st#dies/ and soon discovers that that partic#lar plane is the scene and field of some very strange phenomena. As he advances/ and learns more of the occ#lt laws and principles/ he develops still greater interest in the s#b4ect. And/ when he reaches the stage in which he is able to act#ally sense 5by astral vision6 on this plane/ he finds that a new world of e2perience has opened o#t before him. The oldest occ#lt teachings/ as well as the latest/ inform the st#dent that there are Seven Planes of 3eing. The lowest of these planes is that which is *nown as the 7aterial Plane. Second in order is that which is *nown as the Plane of 8orces. The third is that which is *nown as the Astral Plane. The fo#rth is that which is *nown as the 7ental Plane. Above these fo#r planes are three higher planes/ *nown to occ#ltists/ b#t which have no names that can be #nderstood by those developing only on the lower planes/ and which are incapable of e2planation to those on the lower planes. 9 shall refer to some of these higher planes/ in this little boo*/ as we proceed/ b#t shall ma*e no attempt to describe them for the reasons 4#st given. :#r s#b4ect for the present consideration is merely the Astral Plane/ and we shall find s#fficient interesting facts in considering the phenomena of that plane witho#t attempting to penetrate the veils of those still higher. 9t sho#ld be mentioned at this point/ that each of the Seven Planes has

seven s#b$planes and that each of these s#b$planes has its own seven s#bdivisions; and so on to the seventh degree of s#bdivision. So/ yo# see/ there is a most min#te classification in the occ#lt teachings. The st#dent of occ#ltism/ at the beginning/ #s#ally e2periences diffic#lty in forming a clear conception of the meaning of the word <plane< as #sed in the occ#lt teachings. Cons#lting the dictionary/ he is apt to get the idea of a plane as one of a series of straight layers $ one part of a great strata $ above and below which are other layers or strata. 9t #s#ally is =#ite diffic#lt for the occ#lt teacher to eradicate this erroneo#s idea from the mind of his p#pils/ and to s#bstit#te the correct concept. This error arises from thin*ing of these planes of being as composed of matter/ or material s#bstance/ which/ of co#rse/ is incorrect. 1hen it is remembered that even the densest form of matter itself is composed of vibrations of energy 5as recogni0ed by modern science6/ and that the 8orces of >at#re are b#t manifestations of vibrations of energy/ one begins to find the *ey. 9nstead of the planes rising one above the other in the scale of the fineness/ of matter/ they are graded according to their respective degrees of vibration of energy. 9n short/ they are planes of vibrations of energy/ and not planes of matter at all. 7atter is simply the lowest degree of vibrations of energy/ that is all. The second common so#rce of error/ on the part of the beginner in occ#ltism/ is that of pict#ring the planes as lying one above the other in space. This conception/ of co#rse/ nat#rally follows #pon the error of thin*ing of the planes as a series of layers or strata of fine matter; b#t it also often persists even after the st#dent has grasped the idea that the planes are grades of vibration/ rather than of matter. 3#t/ finally/ the st#dent is impressed with the idea that the planes are not <layers< or <strata< at all. The planes do not lie one above the other/ in space. They have not spatial distinction or degree. They interpenetrate each other in the same point of space. A single point of space may have its manifestations of each and all of the seven planes of being. Some of the old occ#ltists so#ght to e2plain this condition of things to their st#dents in the words of a very celebrated ancient teacher/ who originated the aphorism: <A plane of being is not a place/ b#t a state of being.< >o words can give a better e2planation of/ or aid/ to/ the correct mental conception of the idea of a <plane< in the occ#lt sense of the term. To those st#dents who may find it diffic#lt to form the idea of a n#mber of manifestations/ each having its own rate of vibration/ occ#pying the same point of space at the same time/ 9 wo#ld say that a little consideration of the phenomena of the physical world will perhaps serve as an aid in the matter. 8or instance/ every st#dent of physics *nows that a single point of space may contain vibrations of heat/ light of many shades/ magnetism/ electricity/ ?$rays/ etc./ etc./ each manifesting its

own rate of vibration/ and yet not interfering with the others. .very beam of s#nlight Contains many different colors/ each with its own rate of vibration/ and yet none crowding o#t the others. 3y the proper laboratory apparat#s each *ind of light may be separated from the others/ and the ray th#s split #p. The difference in the colors arise simply from the different rate of etheric vibrations. Again it is possible to send many telegrams along the same wire/ at the same time/ by #sing senders and receivers of different vibratory *eynotes.< The same thing has its corresponding analogy in the case of wireless telegraphy. So/ yo# see/ even on the physical planes we find many forms of vibratory manifestation occ#pying the same point of space at the same time. The 7aterial Plane/ with which we are all familiar/ has/ of co#rse/ its seven s#b$planes/ and li*ewise its seven$times$seven series of s#bdivisions/ as have all the seven planes. At first we are apt to thin* that we are perfectly familiar with every form of matter/ b#t this is far from being the case/ for we are familiar with only a few forms. The occ#lt teachings show #s that on certain of the fi2ed stars/ and some of the planets of o#r own chain/ there are forms and *inds of matter as m#ch lower in vibration than the densest form of matter *nown to #s/ as these dense forms are lower than the highest #ltra$gaseo#s forms of matter recogni0ed by #s. And/ on the other hand/ the same teachings inform #s that there are in e2istence/ in other worlds/ and even 5to an e2tent6 in o#r own/ forms and *inds of matter as m#ch higher than these highest forms of #ltra$gaseo#s matter *nown to #s/ as the said *nown forms are higher than the densest form of matter now *nown to #s. This is a startling statement/ b#t every advanced occ#ltist *nows it to be tr#e. Physical science formerly classified matter as follows: 516 solids; 526 li=#ids; 536 gaseo#s. 3#t modern science has fo#nd many forms of matter far more ten#o#s and rarer than even the finest gas. 9t now calls this fo#rth class <#ltra$gaseo#s matter.< 3#t occ#ltists *now that beyond this fo#rth s#b$plane of matter which science is 4#st now discovering/ there lie three other/ and still finer/ s#b$planes/ of which science at present has no conception. >e2t higher in the scale of manifested being/ we find what is *nown as the Plane of 8orces/ of which very little is *nown o#tside of occ#lt science/ altho#gh/ of later years/ physical science has been brea*ing into this field. 9n the ne2t twenty years physical science will proceed f#rther in this direction. The research into radioactivity is leading toward f#rther *nowledge regarding this plane of manifestation. :n the Plane of 8orces/ we find the seven s#b$planes/ and li*ewise the seven$times$seven s#bdivision. There are forces far below the scale of the ordinary forces of >at#re *nown to man. And/ li*ewise/ there are great series of >at#re@s 8iner 8orces at the other end of the scale/ of which the ordinary man $ even the scientist $ *nows nothing. 9t is these finer forces which acco#nt for many of the wonders of occ#lt science. 9n

partic#lar/ the fine force called <prana< or <vital force/< plays an important part in all occ#lt phenomena. >e2t above the scale of the Plane of 8orces/ we find the great Astral Plane/ the consideration of which is the p#rpose of this little boo*.

CHAPTER II. ASTRAL REGIONS. 9n the occ#lt teachings we find fre=#ent references to what are called <the astral regions/< and the inhabitants and phenomena of said regions. )i*e the term <plane/< this term <region< has ca#sed m#ch mis#nderstanding. The old occ#ltists #sed it in a loose sense/ *nowing that their p#pils clearly #nderstood the real significance. They did not care whether or not other persons #nderstood. 3#t the modern investigator/ witho#t the benefit of a teacher/ often finds himself conf#sed by this mention of <regions< of the Astral Plane/ and fre=#ently finds himself thin*ing of them in the sense of the <heavens and hells< of the old theology $ as definite places in space. 3#t these astral regions are nothing more than vibrational manifestations on the Astral Plane/ which have no special reference to any set$aside portion of space/ and which manifestations may/ and do/ occ#r at almost any point of space. The astral regions occ#py the same space as the material regions/ neither interfering with the other. The term <astral< is derived from the Aree* word meaning <related to a star/< and was originally #sed in describing the heavens of the Aree*s $ the abodes of their gods. 8rom this sense and #sage the term widened in application/ #ntil it was employed to indicate what might be called the <ghostland< of the ancient people. This ghostland was believed to be inhabited by beings of an etheral nat#re/ not only disembodied spirits/ b#t also angelic beings of a higher order. The ancient occ#ltists of Areece/ and other 1estern lands/ th#s nat#rally fell into the c#stom of #sing the familiar term to indicate that which we *now as the Astral Plane in modern occ#ltism. :f co#rse/ the :riental occ#ltists had their own terms for this plane of manifestation/ which terms were derived from old Sans*rit roots/ and which were m#ch older than the Aree* terms. 3#t/ as the #se of Sans*rit terms has a tendency to conf#se 1estern st#dents/ the best :riental teachers/ today/ in teaching 1estern st#dents/ almost always #se the old Aree* occ#lt terms. At this point/ 9 m#st answer a =#estion which #s#ally presents itself to the mind of the intelligent st#dent at abo#t this partic#lar stage of the teaching. 9t is probably in the mind of the st#dent who is reading these words/ at this partic#lar moment. The B#estion may be stated as follows: <,ow is it possible for anyone to spea* intelligently of the

phenomena of the Astral Plane/ if that plane is on a higher vibratory scale than the physical senses. ,ow can one visit/ and perceive things on/ the Astral Plane/ witho#t his body being demateriali0edC< This =#estion is a nat#ral and perfectly fair one/ and evidences the in=#iring mind which the tr#e occ#ltist always possesses. And no tr#e occ#lt teacher will hesitate for a moment in fran*ly answering it. 8or/ remember this always/ my st#dents/ the occ#lt teaching is not based merely on the principles laid down as <gospel< by the old occ#ltists. espect/ yesD Areat respect is paid to these old teachings/ of co#rse/ b#t every advanced occ#ltist *nows that he m#st act#ally e2perience the manifestation of occ#lt phenomena before he can positively prono#nce the same to be an occ#lt tr#th. S#ch e2perience comes to every advanced occ#ltist/ when he reaches the necessary stage of development which alone renders s#ch e2perience safe for him. )i*e the scientist/ the tr#e occ#ltist learns by his own e2perience/ b#ilt #pon the recorded previo#s e2perience of others. To the advanced occ#ltist the phenomena of the Astral Plane is 4#st as real $ 4#st as readily sensed $ as is the phenomena of the material plane to those f#nctioning #pon it. 3#t/ to answer the =#estion: :ne does not have to disintegrate or demateriali0e his physical body in order to visit or sense the Astral Plane and its phenomena. There are two aven#es of approach to the Astral Plane/ as follows: 516 by the employment of the astral senses; and 526 by visiting in the so$called <astral body.< )et #s consider each of these aven#es in t#rn. 3y the term <the astral senses/< occ#ltists indicate that wonderf#l secondary set of senses/ corresponding in office to the five physical senses/ by means of which man is able to receive impressions on the Astral Plane. .ach of the physical senses of man has its astral co#nterpart/ which f#nctions on the astral plane 4#st as the physical senses do #pon the material plane. Th#s every man has/ in latency/ the power of seeing/ hearing/ feeling/ smelling/ and tasting/ on the astral plane/ by means of these five astral senses. >ay more/ as all advanced occ#ltists *now/ man really has seven physical senses instead of five/ tho#gh these additional two senses are not s#fficiently developed for #se in the average person 5tho#gh the occ#ltist of fair attainment generally #nfolds them into #se6. And even these two e2tra physical senses also have their astral co#nterparts. 9n the cases of persons who/ accidentally or thro#gh cartf#l training/ have developed the power of astral vision $ perception thro#gh astral sight $ the scenes of the Astral Plane are perceived 4#st as clearly as are those of the material plane perceived by the physical sense of sight. The ordinary clairvoyant has flashes of this astral vision/ as a r#le/ and is not able to sense astrally by an act of will. The trained occ#ltist/ on the other hand/ is able to shift from one set of senses to another/ by an act of will/ whenever he wishes to do so. 9n fact/ s#ch

occ#ltists may f#nction on both planes at the same time/ in this way/ if they so desire. 9n cases of clairvoyance/ or astral visioning/ the occ#ltist remains in his physical body/ and senses the phenomena of the Astral Plane =#ite nat#rally or easily. 9t is not necessary for him even to enter into a trance condition/ or any abnormal mental state or condition. And still less is it necessary for him to leave his physical body in s#ch cases. 9n the instance of the higher form of clairvoyance/ he may even sense events both on the physical plane/ as well as the astral planes/ at a distance $ tho#gh/ strictly spea*ing/ this belongs to a somewhat different order of occ#lt phenomena. To vision astrally/ the occ#ltist has merely to shift his sensory mechanism/ 4#st as the operator of the typewriter shifts from the small letter type to the capitals by a shift$*ey. This/ then/ is the simplest and most common way of occ#lt sensing on the Astral Plane. 9t is possible to many to whom the second method is impossible. The second aven#e of approach to the Astral Plane is that in which the individ#al leaves his physical body/ and act#ally travels on the Astral Plane in his astral body. The astral body is composed of an etheral s#bstance of a very high degree of vibration. 9t is not mere matter/ and yet is not mere force $ it is composed of astral s#bstance which resembles very fine matter/ b#t which is far more ten#o#s than anything that is *nown as matter. :rdinarily the astral body can be sensed only by means of the astral vision/ b#t #nder certain other conditions it ta*es on the semblance of a vapory form of matter/ and is perceptible to the ordinary physical senses as a <ghost< or <apparition/< even when the person is in physical life. The astral body is an e2act co#nterpart of the physical body/ b#t s#rvives the latter by a n#mber of years. 9t is not immortal/ however/ and finally disintegrates and is resolved into its original elements 4#st as is the physical body. The advanced occ#ltist/ in his astral body/ is able to leave his physical body 5which remains in a state of sleep trance6 and to visit at will on the Astral Plane/ even at points in space far removed from his physical body. ,e/ however/ is always connected with the physical body by a thin/ cobweb$li*e/ filament of etheral s#bstance/ which e2tends or contracts as he travels away from/ or toward/ the sleeping physical body. lEf this filament is bro*en by an accident on the Astral Plane/ his physical body <dies< and he is never able to ret#rn to it. S#ch accidents are rare/ b#t occ#lt history has records showing their occasional occ#rrence. 7any persons are able to travel in the astral body/ d#ring ordinary sleep/ b#t #s#ally have no recollection of the same #pon reawa*ening. The occ#ltist/ on the other hand/ travels conscio#sly/ and with a p#rpose/ and always is wide$awa*e on s#ch 4o#rneys. ,e is as m#ch at home on the Astral Plane as on the physical one. And so/ st#dent/ yo# see how the occ#lt teaching regarding the Astral Plane has been obtained; and how s#ch teaching has as firm a basis in

act#al e2perience as have those based #pon physical observation/ e2periment/ and e2perience. 7oreover/ every occ#ltist may verify the teaching for himself $ in fact act#ally does so. CHAPTER III. REALITY OF THE ASTRAL. 9t is c#stomary among occ#ltists to spea* of the Astral Plane/ simply as <the Astral< as for instance <o#t in the Astral;< <visiting the Astral;< <phenomena of the Astral;< <inhabitants of the Astral/< etc./ etc. The st#dent may as well familiari0e himself with this #se of the term <the Astral/< in order to #nderstand/ and be #nderstood by/ others interested in occ#lt st#dy. Accordingly/ 9 shall from now on #se this term/ <the Astral/< as indicating the Astral egions/ $ the Astral Plane $ witho#t f#rther e2planation. :ne of the hardest things for the elementary st#dent to reali0e is that the Astral is 4#st as real/ abiding/ and fi2ed as is the material world. F#st as steam is act#ally as real as water/ or even as ice/ so is the Astral 4#st as real as the world of the physical senses. 8or that matter/ if we co#ld see o#r world of matter placed #nder a s#fficiently strong magnifying glass/ we sho#ld perceive it not as a great body of solid fi2ed matter/ b#t rather as an aggregation of an infinite n#mber of the tiniest particles themselves b#ilt into atoms; these b#ilt into molec#les; and these b#ilt into solid masses. The space between the ions of the material atom is as comparatively great as the space between the planets of o#r solar system. And every ion/ atom and molec#le is in constant and intense motion. Gnder a glass of s#fficient power/ there wo#ld seem to be nothing solid in the material world. 9f the magnifying glass were to be raised to an infinite power/ even the ions wo#ld melt into seething nothingness/ and there wo#ld be nothing left b#t the ether which has no weight and which is imperceptible to the senses even when aided by the strongest instr#ments of the laboratory. So yo# see/ the solidity of things is merely relative and comparative. The vibration of s#bstance on the Astral is higher than those of the material plane; b#t even the Astral vibrations are far slower than those of the ne2t higher plane/ and so on. To the traveller on the Astral the scenery/ and everything connected therewith/ seems as solid as the most solid material does to the physical eye. 9t really is 4#st as solid as is the astral body in which yo# visit it/ for that matter. As for reality/ the Astral is 4#st as real as is the material/ in every respect. The 8orces of >at#re are not perceptible to the physical eye/ e2cept as manifesting thro#gh matter $ b#t they are very real as all of #s *now by e2perience. yo# cannot see electricity/ b#t when yo# receive its shoc* yo# reali0e its reality. Ho# cannot see the force of gravity/ b#t yo#

become painf#lly aware of its reality when it drops an apple on yo#r head ; or ca#ses yo# to fall s#ddenly when yo# ma*e a misstep on the c#rb of the street. 9n fact/ it is reali0ed by all advanced occ#ltists/ that if there really can be said to be any degrees in reality between things/ the balance is in favor of the finer forms of s#bstance and forces/ and against the less fine. So/ st#dent/ never permit yo#rself to thin* of the Astral as something comparatively #nreal/ or as only relatively e2istent. 9/ of co#rse/ am not spea*ing of eality in the metaphysical sense of the term/ for in s#ch sense the entire manifested #niverse/ incl#ding all of its planes/ is #nreal as compared to the :ne eality. And/ again/ do not permit yo#rself to thin* of the astral senses as being one whit less real/ reliable and important than those of the physical body. .ach class of sense perception has its own proper field in which it is *ing. .ach is master in its own realm. And there sho#ld be no attempt to draw distinctions of reality between them At the last/ they are all b#t the mechanism of conscio#sness/ or <awareness< each adapted to the pec#liar re=#irements of its environment. The Astral has its scenery/ geography 5D6/ and <things/< 4#st as has the material world. These things are 4#st as real as are .ngland/ the Iatican/ St. Pa#l@s/ the Capitol at 1ashington/ 3roadway/ Picadilly/ or the #e de la Pai2; the Areat edwood Trees of California/ the Arand Canyon/ the Alps/ or the 3lac* 8orest. 9ts inhabitants are 4#st as real as any of the great men of the co#ntry in which yo# live/ or those of any other co#ntry/ whose names 9 hesitate to call/ lest they pass from this material plane and th#s become <#nreal< even before these printed words pass before yo#r eye/ so impermanent are the inhabitants and things of even this real 5D6 material world. The law of constant change operates on the Astral 4#st as on the material plane. There/ things come and go/ 4#st as they do here on the material plane. Stop a moment and concentrate on the gist $ the matter/ and yo# will see that the difference between the things of the two planes is simply li*e the difference between red and bl#e $ simply a difference in the rate of vibration of s#bstance. And/ this again/ is the ca#se of the difference between steel and hydrogen gas/ between electricity and light/ between magnetism and heat $ simply a difference of vibrations of s#bstance. 7oreover/ and this is =#ite important to the st#dent/ the Astral has its laws 4#st as has the material world. These laws m#st be learned and observed/ otherwise the inhabitants of the Astral/ as well as the visitor thereto/ will reap the res#lt which always comes from bro*en nat#ral laws. Again/ there e2ists what may be called the <geography< of the Astral/ if this material$ plane word is permitted in this connection. There are regions/ points of space/ places/ *ingdoms; co#ntries/ etc./ on the Astral/ 4#st as on the material plane. Sometimes these Astral regions have no connection with any on the material plane/ while in other cases

they have a very direct connection with and relation to/ material places and the inhabitants thereof. :ne may travel from one region of the Astral to another/ by simply an act of will which raises the vibration of the astral body/ witho#t it moving a point in space. Again/ one may travel in space from one point to another on the Astral/ in cases where these points have some relation to points on the material plane. As an instance of this latter form of travel/ 9 wo#ld say that one may travel in the Astral from 3erlin to 3ombay $ in b#t the twin*le of an eye/ as regards time/ $ by merely wishing or willing to do so. HesD Time and space have their manifestation on the Astral. 3#t/ nevertheless/ certain Astral manifestations/ on its seven$times$seven s#b$planes/ may be/ and li*ely are/ present T,. . in/ at/ and on/ the e2act point of space which yo# are occ#pying at this moment on the material plane $ and this very moment of time/ >:1D 9f yo# have the *nowledge and power/ yo#/ witho#t leaving yo#r seat/ may traverse all of these s#b$planes/ one after the other/ witnessing their scenery and inhabitants/ their phenomena and activity/ and then ret#rn to the material plane $ all in a moment of time/ and witho#t changing a single point in space. :r/ if yo# prefer/ yo# may travel to any of these s#b$planes of the Astral/ at yo#r point space/ and then travel in space on the Astral to some other place on that s#b$plane/ and then have the choice of ret#rning either the same way by which yo# came/ or else descending to the material plane and travelling on it/ in yo#r astral body/ bac* to where yo#r physical body is resting. ead over these last two paragraphs/ #ntil yo# get the idea clearly fi2ed in yo#r mind/ for by so doing yo# will be able to comprehend more easily that which 9 shall have to say to yo# in the following chapters of this boo*. 9n travelling on the Astral/ one meets with many strange inhabitants of that wonderf#l realm of >at#re $ some pleasant and others #npleasant. Some of these inhabitants have passed on from the material plane/ while others have never dwelt there/ these latter forms being natives of the Astral and pec#liar to itself. 9n my personal class instr#ction/ 9 have fo#nd it advantageo#s to my st#dents for me to describe the phenomena of the Astral to them in my lect#res/ in the form of the story of a trip in the Astral/ rather than as a dry/ technical description. 9n s#ch lect#res/ 9 ass#me that the st#dents are present on the Astral with me/ and that 9 am acting as their g#ide. 9n this way/ a m#ch clearer conception of the s#b4ect seems to be gained by them. After caref#l consideration/ 9 have decided to follow this same plan $ in part/ at least $ in some of the following chapters. 9 need scarcely add that the descriptions given are based #pon the act#al e2periences of advanced occ#ltists/ incl#ding myself/ and are not dogmatic statements of theory/ con4ect#res/ or spec#lations of mere <boo* occ#ltists.< .very fact herein stated may be verified by the e2perience

of any advanced occ#ltist. CHAPTER IV. PASSING THE BORDER. 9 do not deem it advisable to enter into a description of the technical details attendant #pon the process of passing o#t of the physical body into the astral body of finer s#bstance. Any description of this *ind/ even tho#gh it be b#t merely a s#ggestion of the facts/ might give an #ntrained person at least a hint of the process/ which might lead him to e2periment/ and which might bring #pon him very #ndesirable res#lts. 9 shall pass over this stage/ for the reasons stated/ which will meet with the approval of every advanced occ#ltist and caref#l st#dent of occ#ltism. >ow/ st#dent/ yo# find yo#rself o#tside of yo#r physical form or body/ and clad in yo#r astral form alone. Ho# probably thin* that 9 am 4o*ing with yo#/ for as yo# glance at yo#r body yo# find that it appears not different from yo#r ordinary one. .ven yo#r clothing is the same/ to the most min#te detail $ this occ#rs thro#gh perfectly nat#ral laws on the Astral plane/ which 9 cannot ta*e time to e2plain at this time. Ho# reali0e/ however/ that yo# are indeed o#t of the physical body/ when yo# t#rn yo#r head and perceive yo#r own physical form/ as well as mine/ seemingly s#n* in sleep in the arm chairs in which we seated o#rselves a few moments ago. )oo*ing a little closer/ yo# will see that yo#r astral form as well as mine/ is connected with its physical co#nterpart by a tiny/ thin/ ten#o#s filament of ethereal s#bstance/ resembling a rope of shining spider$web sil*. This filament is capable of e2pansion/ and contraction/ and enables yo# to move abo#t freely. >ow concentrate yo#r attention as yo# have been ta#ght to do/ and will that yo#r vibrations increase in rate/ b#t in perfect harmony with mine/ so that yo# will *eep in my company instead of moving on to other s#b$planes or s#b$visions/ parting with my company. Ho# wo#ld not find it e2actly safe or pleasant to leave my presence/ #ntil yo# have learned to pilot yo#rself in these strange waters. Ho# will find yo#rself with me in a strange atmosphere/ altho#gh yo# have not moved an inch in space. 3ehind yo#/ so to spea*/ yo# perceive dimly the room in which we were 4#st living; and ahead of yo#/ so to spea*/ yo# perceive strange flashes and strea*s of phosphorescent light of different h#es and tints. These are the vibrations and waves of force/ for yo# are now passing thro#gh the Plane of 8orces. That vivid/ bl#ish strea* is the passage of some electric c#rrent $ probably a wireless message flashing thro#gh space. 3ac* of yo#/ on my table/ yo# see the magnetic ore/ or lodestone/ paper$weight/ which always lies there. 3#t now yo# see the pec#liar phosphorescence aro#nd its poles/ which is not visible on the material plane.

Ho# also notice a pec#liar faint vibratory glow aro#nd every physical ob4ect $ this is the force of atomic and molec#lar attraction/ etc. Still fainter/ yo# find a pec#liar radiance permeating the entire atmosphere $ this is the o#tward sign of the force of gravitation. These things are all very interesting/ and if yo# were a learned physicist/ or great physical scientist/ yo# co#ld scarcely be dragged from this plane/ so interesting wo#ld be the st#dy of force made visible. 3#t/ as yo# are not s#ch a person/ yo# will see more interesting sights ahead of yo#. >ow/ yo# feel yo#r life force vibrating at a higher rate/ and reali0e that the sense of weight seems to be dropping from yo#. Ho# feel as light as a feather/ and feel as tho#gh yo# co#ld move witho#t an effort. 1ell/ yo# may begin to wal*. Hes/ <wal*/< 9 saidD Ho# are still on earth/ and the floor of the room is still there #nder yo#r feet. )et #s wal* thro#gh the wall of the room/ and o#t into the street. &on@t be afraid/ step thro#gh the wall as if it were made of fog. There/ yo# see how easy it is. :dd thing/ really stepping thro#gh a bric* and stone wall/ isn@t it. 3#t it@s still more odd when yo# stop to consider that as we moved the wall really passed thro#gh o#r thin s#bstance/ instead of the latter passing thro#gh the wall $ that@s the real secret of it. >ow let #s wal* down the street. Step o#t 4#st as if yo# were in the flesh $ stop a momentD There yo# let that man wal* right thro#gh yo#D And he never even saw yo#D &o yo# reali0e that we are ghostsC F#st as m#ch a ghost as was ,amlet@s father/ e2cept that his physical body was mo#ldering in the gro#nd/ while o#rs are asleep awaiting o#r ret#rn to them. ThereD That dog saw yo#. And that horse vag#ely feels yo#r presenceD See how nervo#s he isD Animals possess very *een psychic senses/ compared to those of man. 3#t cease thin*ing of yo#rself/ and loo* closely at the persons passing by yo#. Ho# notice that each one is s#rro#nded by an egg$shaped a#ra e2tending on all sides of him to the distance of abo#t two or three feet. &o yo# notice the *aleidoscopic play of blending colors in the a#raC >otice the difference in the shades and tints of these colors/ and also observe the predominance of special colors in each caseD Ho# *now what these colors mean/ for 9 have instr#cted yo# regarding them in my teaching on <The ,#man A#ra/ and Astral Colors.< >otice that bea#tif#l spirit#al bl#e aro#nd that woman@s headD And see that #gly m#ddy red aro#nd that man passing herD ,ere comes an intellect#al giant $ see that bea#tif#l golden yellow aro#nd his head/ li*e a nimb#sD 3#t 9 don@t e2actly li*e that shade of red aro#nd his body $ and there is too mar*ed an absence of bl#e in his a#raD ,e lac*s harmonio#s development. &o yo# notice those great clo#ds of semi$l#mino#s s#bstance/ which are slowly floating alongC $ notice how the colors vary in them. Those are clo#ds of tho#ght vibrations/ representing the composite tho#ght of a m#ltit#de of people. Also notice how each body of tho#ght is drawing to

itself little fragments of similar tho#ght forms and energy. Ho# see here the tendency of tho#ght forces to attract others of their *ind $ how li*e the proverbial birds of a feather/ they floc* together $ how tho#ghts come home/ bringing their friends with them $ how each man creates his own tho#ght atmosphere. Spea*ing of atmospheres/ do yo# notice that each shop we pass has its own pec#liar tho#ght atmosphereC 9f yo# loo* into the ho#ses on either side of the street/ yo# will see that the same thing is tr#e. The very street itself has its own atmosphere/ created by the composite tho#ght of those inhabiting and fre=#enting it. >oD &o not pass down that side street $ its astral atmosphere is too depressing/ and its colors too horrible and disg#sting for yo# to witness 4#st now $ yo# might get disco#raged and fly bac* to yo#r physical body for reliefD )oo* at those tho#ght forms flying thro#gh the atmosphereD 1hat a variety of form and coloringD Some most bea#tif#l/ the ma4ority =#ite ne#tral in tint/ and occasionally a fierce/ fiery one tearing its way along toward its mar*. :bserve those whirling and swirling tiny cyclonic tho#ght$forms as they are thrown off from that b#siness ho#se. Across the street/ notice that great octop#s monster of a tho#ght$form/ with its great tentacles striving to wind aro#nd passing persons and draw them into that flashy dance$hall and dram$shop. A devilish monster which we wo#ld do well to destroy. T#rn yo#r concentrated tho#ght #pon it/ and will it o#t of e2istence $ there/ that@s the right way; watch it sic*en and shrivelD 3#t alas/ more of its *ind will come forth from that place. ,ere/ will yo#rself #p above the level of the ho#setops $ yo# can do it easily/ if yo# only reali0e that yo# can $ there/ 9 have helped yo# to do it this time/ it@s =#ite easy when yo# once gain confidence. ,owever/ if yo# lose confidence/ and grow afraid/ down yo# will t#mble to the gro#nd/ and will br#ise yo#r astral body. 8rom this height loo* down aro#nd yo#. Ho# will see a great m#ltit#de of tiny candle$li*e lights $ each represents a h#man so#l. ,ere or there yo# will see a few m#ch brighter lights/ and far apart yo# will see some that shine li*e a brilliant electric spar* $ these last are the a#ric symbols of an advanced so#l. <)et yo#r light so shineD< 3ehold the radiance emerging from that h#mble ho#se of religio#s worship/ and contrast it with the #npleasant a#ric atmosphere of that magnificent ch#rch str#ct#re ne2t door to it $ can yo# not read the story of spirit#ality and the lac* of it in the cases of these ch#rchesC 3#t these sights/ interesting tho#gh they be/ and as #sef#l as they are in ill#strating the lessons yo# have learned in the class/ or from the man#al/ are far less in the scale than those which we shall witness in a moment. Come/ ta*e my hand. :#r vibrations are raising. ComeD CHAPTER V. SOME LOWER SUB-PLANES.

>ow/ st#dent/ we are entering the vibrations of the lower s#b$planes of the Astral. Ho# m#st nerve yo#rself to witness some #npleasant sights/ b#t be not afraid for nothing can harm yo# here while 9 am with yo#. 1ere yo# alone here/ lac*ing the *nowledge of self$protection/ yo# might find the e2perience very terrifying. 3#t/ even then/ tho#gh yo# lac*ed the higher *nowledge/ if yo# wo#ld b#t maintain a positive mental state/ and deny the power of the Astral inhabitants to harm yo#/ yo# wo#ld still be safe. A firm mental attit#de/ and the assertion of yo#r own imm#nity will act as a barrier thro#gh which these infl#ences cannot penetrate. Ho#r first impression is that the material world is still aro#nd yo#/ with all its scenes plainly visible. 3#t/ as yo# loo* yo# will find that there seems to be a pec#liar veil between the scenes and the plane #pon which yo# are temporarily dwelling. This veil/ while at least semi$transparent/ nevertheless seems to have a pec#liar appearance of resistant solidity and yo# find yo#rself instinctively reali0ing that it wo#ld be a barrier to the passage of the astral entities bac* to the material plane. 9 now change o#r vibrations/ for a moment/ to those of a very #npleasant s#bdivision of the lowest s#b$plane. This is the s#bdivision which the old occ#ltists were wont to call <the Astral cemetery.< 1e shall stay on this plane of vibrations b#t for a moment/ for it f#rnishes a ghastly sight/ and its atmosphere is most depressing. >ow/ hold tight to me/ and press close #p to me/ for yo# will instinctively feel the need of protection. Aa0ing aro#nd yo# on all sides/ yo# will see what appear to be the disintegrating forms of h#man beings/ and even some animals. These forms seem to be floating in space. They seem real/ and yet/ some way/ not real. Ho# reali0e that they are not physical bodies/ b#t still they bear too close a resemblance to physical corpses to be pleasant. Ta*e one good loo* aro#nd yo#/ for 9 shall change o#r vibrations in a moment. There/ we have left that scene behind #sD 3#t before proceeding f#rther/ we shall pa#se a moment and consider what we have 4#st witnessed. These disintegrating astral forms are what occ#ltists *now as the <astral shells.< The astral shell is really an astral corpse/ 4#st as the physical body in the grave is the material corpse. 8or/ as we shall presently see/ the disembodied so#l event#ally leaves the Astral and moves an to what the occ#ltists *now as the mental or spirit#al planes of being/ which are symboli0ed by the race conception of <the heavens/< of which all religions teach. 1hen the so#l so passes. on/ it leaves behind it the astral body it has inhabited while on the Astral. This astral body/ or form/ then begins to disintegrate/ and in time disappears altogether/ being resolved to its original elements. &#ring this process/ it dwells on this partic#lar division of one of the lower s#bdivisions of the lowest Astral s#b$plane. This partic#lar division has no other p#rpose/ and is separate and apart from the other s#bdivisions.

There is a great difference between the astral shells of different individ#als/ so far as is concerned the d#ration of the shells in this partic#lar place of disintegration. 8or instance/ the astral of a person of high spirit#ality and ideals will disintegrate very rapidly indeed/ as its atoms have little or no cohesive attraction when once ie is discarded. 3#t/ on the other hand/ the astral shell of a person of earthly ideals and material tendencies will hold together for a comparatively long time/ so strong is the attractive force generated while the shell is occ#pied by its owner. Those astral bodies are <dead< and have no conscio#sness or intelligence/ and as a r#le cannot even be galvani0ed into appearing a life as can the class of astral forms *nown as the <spectres/< or <shades/< which belong to a slightly different category/ and which we shall now glance at for a moment. ThereD Aa0e on the scene for a moment/ before 9 change the vibrations again. :#r momentary glimpse of the s#bdivision of the Astral #pon which the spectral forms abide/ was not a pleasant one/ b#t it is interesting beca#se it e2plains some pec#liar feat#res of psychic or occ#lt phenomena which is often misinterpreted. Ho# noticed that instead of floating abo#t in astral space/ as did the shells which we saw a few moments bac*/ these spectres acted li*e shadowy h#man beings in a da0ed or dreamli*e condition. Ho# saw them wal*ing dreamily abo#t/ witho#t set ob4ect or p#rpose $ a weird/ #npleasant sight. These spectres are really astral shells from which the so#ls have departed/ b#t which have left in them s#fficient power/ arising from the former tho#ght and will vibrations of their owners/ to give them a temporary semblance of life and action/ This power grad#ally wears away/ and the shell then sin*s to the s#bdivision which we saw a little f#rther bac*. 9n the meantime/ it dwells on this partic#lar s#bdivision. 9n the case of the so#l with high ideals and spirit#al aspirations/ there are practically no material tho#ght vibrations remaining to <galvani0e< the astral body after the so#l has withdrawn itself. 9ts higher nat#re has ne#trali0ed these lower/ b#t strong/ vibrations. 3#t in the case of the so#l retaining strong material tho#ghts and desires/ the power is m#ch stranger. 9n the latter class/ even after the higher nat#re of the so#l has drawn it #pward/ above the Astral/ these lower mental vibrations may persist in the deserted astral form/ and th#s give to the latter a semblance of life and activity which/ tho#gh a co#nterfeit/ may manifest considerable power for a time. The co#nterfeit power of these spectral forms steadily decreases/ b#t in some cases it persists for a comparatively long time. As a r#le/ the power disappears in the way stated/ b#t in certain other cases it is #sed #p/ as a spar* is rendered bright by blowing #pon it/ by means of a psychic stim#l#s from persons living on the material plane. 9 am now all#ding to the power generated in <circles/< and thro#gh medi#mistic persons/ on the o#r plane or earth life. The psychic power so generated/

co#pled with the strong mental attraction set #p between persons in earth life and the spectral form/ may ca#se the latter to manifest itself to the former/ either by more or less complete materiali0ation/ or by partial manifestation thro#gh the physical organism of the medi#m/ or medi#ms/ present. 9n s#ch a case/ the spectre/ reanimated and <galvani0ed< into seeming life by means of the psychic power of the medi#m/ or those composing the psychic circle/ will strive to manifest itself by speech/ a#tomatic writing/ raps/ or otherwise. 3#t/ at the best/ its efforts will be feeble and fa#lty/ and the persons witnessing the phenomena will always remember the same with the dim idea that <there was something wrong abo#t it< $ something was fo#nd to be lac*ing. 9n some cases/ the vibration of old memories will s#rvive in the spectral form/ which will enable it to answer =#estions fairly well/ and to all#de to past e2periences. 3#t even then/ in these cases there will be a shadow of #nreality which will impress the caref#l observer. emember/ there are many other forms of <spirit ret#rn< partial or complete/ b#t m#ch that passes for the real phenomena is really b#t a manifestation of the presence of these spectral forms of whose real nat#re we have been made ac=#ainted by o#r glimpse into their region of abode. 7oreover/ these entities 5if they may be called by that name6 borrow ideas and impressions from the minds of the medi#ms or persons in the circle/ in addition to their own shadowy memories/ and th#s do#bly become reflections or co#nterfeits. These spectres have really no so#l. The so#l which formerly occ#pied the form has departed to a higher plane/ and is in ignorance of the performance of its discarded shell. 9t is pathetic to witness cases where these co#nterfeit spectral form are accepted as the departed so#l of the individ#al/ by those who loved him in earth rife. A lac* of *nowledge of tr#e occ#ltism often permits of deplorable mista*es of this *ind. The tr#e occ#ltist is never deceived in this manner. These spectres are no more <departed so#ls< or <spirits< than a galvani0ed physical corpse is the individ#al which once inhabited it/ tho#gh the c#rrent may ca#se it to move its m#scles and go thro#gh the motions of life. 9t remains a corpse and discarded shell $ and that is 4#st what the spectral form is/ pl#s the remaining vibratory echoes of its old mental life. C,APT. I9. &9S.73:&9.& S:G)S. Ho# very nat#rally in=#ire: <3#t where are the disembodied so#ls/ themselvesC 9 e2pected to see them as soon as we crossed the border of the AstralD< HesD That is the general e2pectation of the neophyte in occ#ltism/ when he gets his first glimpse into the Astral scenes. 3#t/ #nless he happens to st#mble at once #pon certain s#b$planes/ he is apt to

be disappointed. 3#t/ the better way @ is to let yo# learn the story by viewing the vario#s s#b$planes/ at the same time listening to my e2planation of that which yo# witness on them. Ho# will notice that o#r vibrations are now changing/ and growing more intense. 1e are now entering #pon a very wonderf#l s#b$plane/ or rather/ #pon one of the s#bdivisions of s#ch a plane. This region/ 9 as* yo# to remember/ is one the entry to which is strictly g#arded by the law of the Astral/ and watched over by certain very high spirit#al infl#ences. 9t is a sacred place. >o one is admitted here as a visitor/ #nless he be of high spirit#ality and p#re heart. .ven a trained occ#ltist/ #nless he possess these =#alifications/ finds it impossible to enter these vibrations. This region is the resting place of the disembodied so#ls for some time after they have left the physical body. 9n it they dwell in peacef#l sl#mber/ #ntil >at#re performs certain wor* in them for their new plane of life. This stage has been compared to the cocoon$stage/ between the stage of the caterpillar and that of the b#tterfly/ 9n which stage a complete transformation is effected/ and the wings of the new life are developed to ta*e the place of the old crawling form. 1e are now on this partic#lar s#b$plane. .nter #pon a contemplation of its wonders/ with all reverence and love of all man*ind. :n all sides/ stretching away as far as the eye can see/ yo# perceive the sl#mbering forms of disembodied so#ls/ each astral form resting in dreamless sleep. And/ yet/ even if yo# were not so informed/ yo# wo#ld recogni0e that these forms are not dead/ b#t are merely sleeping. There is none of the atmosphere of death or corpses abo#t this region. >othing depressing/ yo# notice. >othing b#t a sense of infinite calm and peace. 3eing spirit#ally developed yo#rself/ yo# do#btless feel the presence of certain great spirit#al entities $ tho#gh yo# see them not/ beca#se their vibrations are too high for yo# to see them even by astral vision $ these are the great spirit#al g#ardians of this realm/ who protect the sl#mber of the so#ls at rest herein the Areat 1atchers of the Sleeping So#ls. 9f yo# will watch caref#lly/ yo# will notice here and there a movement indicating the awa*ening of some of these resting forms. A moment later the form disappears from the scene $ it seemingly melts into nothingness. 3#t it still is e2istent $ its vibrations simply have changed/ and it has moved on to another s#b$plane/ or division thereof/ witho#t having been aware of the scenes of this place. 9t has beg#n its real life after death. )et #s move on/ leaving this scene behind #s/ while 9 e2plain to yo# some of the phenomena of this period of e2istence of the disembodied so#l. )et #s pa#se here/ on the =#iet s#b$plane/ #ntil the matter is made plain to yo#. 9t is a common teaching of many religions that the disembodied so#l enters at once #pon its heaven or hell. The oman Catholic Ch#rch/ and some branches of 3#ddhism/ however/ teach of an intermediate state called P#rgatory/ or a similar name. Some denominations of the Christian Ch#rch

hold that all so#ls sl#mber in #nconscio#sness/ #ntil the call of the great tr#mpet of F#dgment &ay/ when all awa*en from their long sleep and are 4#dged and sent to the place of reward or p#nishment/ as their cases may deserve. Ho# see on the Astral some things which show yo# that all of these views have a basis in fact/ and yet how imperfect are these conceptions of the theologiesD All occ#ltists *now/ however/ that nearly all of the original religio#s teachers had a very complete *nowledge of the real facts of the Astral/ and higher planes/ and merely handed down to their followers s#ch fragments of the tr#th as they tho#ght co#ld be assimilated at the time. All of the theological teachings regarding the )ife after &eath $ heavens and hells $ contain some tr#th/ b#t none contain all the tr#th. 9n the ma4ority of cases/ the mind of the dying person sin*s into the sl#mber of so$called death/ and awa*ens only after a period of restf#l/ transforming sl#mber #pon the Astral/ in the region we have 4#st seen. 9n some cases/ however/ there is a brief wa*ing/ li*e a semi$awa*ening from a dream/ shortly after the depart#re from the physical body/ in which case the astral body may appear/ visibly/ to some friend/ associate or loved one $ or even in the scenes in which the person #s#ally spent m#ch of his time/ as/ for instance/ his office/ shop/ st#dy/ etc. This acco#nts for the occasional instances of the disembodied person so appearing/ of which there are many well a#thenticated cases. 3#t even in s#ch event/ the disembodied so#l soon becomes drowsy/ and sin*s into the preliminary sleep of the Astral/ moving on to the region we have 4#st left. There is a great difference in the time in which the disembodied so#l sl#mbers in this state. Strange and parado2ical as it may appear/ the highest and lowest so#ls in the scale of development/ awa*en first. The average so#l sl#mbers far longer than either. 9 will e2plain the reason of this to yo# in a moment. The highly spirit#al person/ needing b#t comparatively little transformation to fit him for the higher planes/ may sl#mber here only a very short time/ and then passes on to some of the higher astral planes; or/ in cases of high development/ may omit these higher astral planes/ and pass on at once to the plane or planes above the Astral $ into what occ#ltists *now as the <heavens/< which/ technically/ are regions of the mental plane/ and the ones still higher. The average so#l/ however/ sl#mbers a m#ch longer time/ many years/ perhaps/ and then awa*ens #pon a higher astral plane s#ited to its re=#irements. The low/ material so#l/ as a r#le/ awa*ens very speedily/ and passes at once to the low plane for which it has an affinity. 3#t/ note this difference: the highly developed so#l awa*ens speedily/ for the reason that it has less to slo#gh off and be transformed into higher attrib#tes $ the wor* is already partially performed. The average so#l/ on the other hand/ re=#ires a m#ch greater transformation for its scenes of higher activities/ and so remains m#ch longer in the transforming sleep; and/ last 5note the seeming parado2/ and

its e2planation6/ the low/ material so#l awa*ens speedily/ not beca#se it has been transformed easily for the higher scenes/ b#t/ on the contrary/ beca#se it is not destined for these higher scenes $ it never reaches them/ b#t descends to a low plane of the Astral/ where it lives o#t its low inclinations and ideals/ #ntil it finally sic*ens of them/ at least to an e2tent/ and then is ready for f#rther transformation. All so#ls/ however/ high or low/ event#ally move off the Astral and enter into the place/ or rather the state/ of the 7ental Plane/ or the regions of the <heavens/< leaving their astral shells behind them. Some of the highest/ as 9 have said/ mo#nt to these planes witho#t any intervening stay on the higher Astral/ b#t the ma4ority have their share of Astral life/ higher and lower. :n the <heaven< planes/ the spirit#al so#ls spend great periods of time en4oying the well$earned bliss. So#ls lower in development spend less time there. The low/ material so#ls/ scarcely taste the e2perience of those high regions. 9 shall spea* f#rther regarding this/ as we proceed. As a general r#le/ 9 wo#ld remind yo#/ the higher the advancement of a so#l/ the greater the time between its incarnations; and vice versa. There are special cases/ however/ s#ch as the call to d#ty on the part of a high so#l/ or a strong attraction to another/ or others/ approaching reincarnation/ which may bring bac* a high so#l in a shorter time than it really deserves $ this is simply ren#nciation. however/ on the part of the high so#l/ and is not a violation of the general r#le as stated a moment ago. )et #s now change o#r vibrations/ and visit some of the scenes of Astral life/ in which the awa*ened so#ls are living/ moving/ and having their being. A few act#al ill#strations of life on these planes will teach yo# more regarding this great s#b4ect/ than wo#ld vol#mes of boo*s/ or years of verbal teaching. )et #s begin at some of the lowest s#b$planes/ and their divisions $ the sight is not pleasant/ b#t yo# will gain a val#able lesson. CHAPTER VII. SCENES OF THE ASTRAL. 1e are now vibrating on a very low s#bdivision of the lowest s#b$plane of the Astral. Ho# are conscio#s of a very #npleasant feeling/ and an almost physical rep#lsion to the atmosphere aro#nd yo#. Some very sensitive nat#res e2perience a feeling of being s#rro#nded by a dense/ stic*y/ fo#l/ foggy atmosphere/ thro#gh which they m#st almost force their way/ when they visit these regions. 9t is a*in to the feelings e2perienced by a high$minded spirit#al person on the earth plane/ if he happens to enter a place inhabited by persons of a lewd/ v#lgar/ depraved nat#re and character $ this magnified many degrees by reason of the astral laws.

9t is no wonder that one of the old .gyptian writers/ whose wor* s#rvives on graven stone/ said/ some fo#r tho#sand years ago: <1hat manner of fo#l region is this into which 9 have foolishly comeC 9t is witho#t water; witho#t air; it is #nfathomably deep; it has the dar*ness of the blac*est night/ when the s*y is overcast with dense clo#ds/ and no ray of light penetrates their c#rtain. So#ls wander hopelessly and helplessly abo#t herein; in it there is no peace/ no calm/ no rest/ no =#iet of the heart or mind. 9t is an abomination and desolation. 1oe is the so#l that abideth hereinD< )oo*ing aro#nd yo#/ in the dim/ ghastly light of this region/ yo# perceive co#ntless h#man forms/ of the most rep#lsive appearance. Some of them are so low in the scale as to seem almost beast$li*e/ rather than h#man. There are still lower forms on the s#bdivisions 4#st below this one/ b#t 9 shall spare yo# the disg#sting sight. These creat#res are disembodied so#ls/ in the astral body/ living on the low plane to which they descended when awa*ening from their very brief astral sleep. 9f yo# will peer thro#gh the enveloping fog/ yo# will become conscio#s of the presence of the material world as a sort of bac*gro#nd. To yo# it appears detached/ and removed in space/ b#t to these creat#res $ these low so#ls $ the two planes seem to be blended. To them/ they appear act#ally to be abiding in the scenes and among the persons of the lowest phases of earth life. .ven yo# find that yo# can see only the very low earth$scenes in the bac*gro#nd $ the higher scenes appear blotted o#t with great smears/ li*e a censored newspaper page in war times. To these poor so#ls there is no earth world e2cept these scenes which accord with their old desires. 3#t while apparently living amid these old familiar and congenial low earth$scenes/ these so#ls are really s#ffering the fate of Tantal#s. 8or while they plainly see these scenes/ and all that is going on in them/ they cannot otherwise participate in the revels and deba#cheries which they perceive plainly $ they can S.. only $ as for the rest they participate only vicario#sly. This renders the place a veritable hell for them/ for they are constantly tantali0ed and tormented by sights of scenes in which they cannot participate. They can e2ercise simply <the l#st of the eye/< which is b#t as a thorn in the flesh to them. :n all sides/ on earth$life/ they see their *ind 5in the flesh6 eating/ drin*ing/ gambling/ engaging in all forms of deba#chery and br#tality $ and while they eagerly cl#ster aro#nd/ they cannot ma*e their presence felt 5#nder ordinary circ#mstances6 nor can they participate in the scenes which they witness. The lac* of the physical body is indeed a very hell to them/ #nder s#ch circ#mstances. The astral atmosphere of low dram$shops/ pool rooms/ gambling halls/ race trac*s/ <free$and$easies/< brothels/ <red$light< districts $ and their more fashionable co#nterparts $ are filled with these low astral forms of so#ls across the astral border. :ccasionally/ they are able to infl#ence some earth companion/ who is so sat#rated with li=#or/ or

overcome by dr#gs/ that he is physically open to s#ch infl#ences. 1hen they so infl#ence him/ they strive to lead him into f#rther degradation and deba#chery/ for/ in so doing/ they obtain a refle2 gratification/ as it were. 3#t 9 shall not dwell #pon this s#b4ect $ it is too loathsome. 9n some instances/ the so4o#rn on this low astral s#b$plane sets #p s#ch a strong desire for rebirth in the flesh/ among similar scenes/ that the poor so#l eagerly presses forward toward reincarnation on a similar low plane. 9n other cases/ 9 am glad to say/ the e2perience so sic*ens and disg#sts the poor so#l that it e2periences a rev#lsion and disg#st for s#ch things/ in which case the c#rrent of its desires nat#rally carries it in the opposite direction/ and it is given the opport#nity to rise in the scale of the Astral/ where its better tendencies are enco#raged/ and a better rebirth finally res#lts. At the end/ however/ in nearly all cases <living$o#t< res#lts in <o#t$living/< and even the lowest rises in time. Some few so#ls/ however/ sin* so low as to be incapable of rising/ and they meet the final fate 5not of damnation6 of annihilation. .ven in these hells of the astral/ however/ the degraded so#ls are <p#nished not for their sins/ b#t by them< as an old writer once forcibly stated it. 3#t this partic#lar scene is not the only one on this s#b$plane of the Astral $ it has many co#nterparts. 9 cannot ta*e time to show them all to yo#/ or to describe them in detail. 9 can ill#strate the idea/ however/ by stating that close to the scene yo# have 4#st witnessed/ is another in which the actors are those miserly/ money$loving so#ls/ who have sold all their better nat#re for the mess of pottage of worldly gain. The p#nishment/ by the sin rather than for it/ is similar to that of the low so#ls in the preceding scene. They are tormented by the sight/ b#t are tantali0ed by not being able to participate. The res#lt is practically similar to that mentioned in the last case $ some find desire increased/ and others find disg#st and na#sea and th#s see* the way to higher things. There are h#ndreds of similar regions on the lower Astral/ some of which are m#ch higher/ however/ than those we have 4#st considered. All of them serve as a P#rgatory/ or place of the b#rning$o#t of desires of a low *ind $ not the b#rning of material flames/ b#t by the fire of the desire itself/ as we have seen. This idea of b#rning away/ or p#rging/ of the low desires/ is fo#nd to permeate nearly all religions/ and has its basis in the facts of the Astral. Changing o#r vibrations/ and mo#nting to higher s#b$planes/ we pass rapidly from scene to scene. Ho# appear astonished to notice that many of these scenes seem to be set to scenery/ li*e a great theatre. Ho# notice with wonder the artificial nat#re of this astral scenery/ and wonder at the fact that the people on these scenes seem to regard this scenery as nat#ral and real/ instead of ma*e$believe. 9t all seems very shadowy and imperfect to yo#/ b#t very real to them. The secret is that the scenery is the creation of the minds of those ta*ing part in the scenes/ and those who have preceded them on this plane. 9t is all ma*e$believe $ a mirage/

so to spea* $ b#t very real to those ta*ing part in the scenes. 9t is not the p#rpose of this little boo* to describe the chemistry of the Astral by means of which it is possible for the mind to b#ild #p scenery/ etc./ from the astral s#bstance. To the advanced occ#ltist/ who has st#died deeply the occ#lt chemistry/ the matter is as simple as is the formation of ice from water/ which in t#rn was once steam $ and at the same time as wonderf#l. The traveller on the Astral always will bear witness to the wonders of that plane/ the scenery of which is all b#ilt #p in this way/ tho#gh he may not be able to e2plain the chemistry of its formation. 9n this way/ on the vario#s higher planes of the Astral/ incl#ding some of the comparatively lower planes/ we find bea#tif#l mo#ntains and valleys/ rivers and la*es/ cities/ towns/ villages and co#ntry land $ in fact/ all forms of scenery *nown in earth life. 1e also see b#ildings of all *inds/ and all varieties of ho#sehold #tensils/ implements/ f#rnit#re/ etc. All are b#ilt from the astral s#bstance by means of the imaginative minds of the dwellers on those planes. To the visitor they seem most #nreal $ one can act#ally see thro#gh them/ and on all sides of them at one time/ as in the case of a transparent crystal. 3#t to the dwellers on the Astral they are as solid and real as are their material co#nterparts $ and no do#bt regarding their solidity ever enters the mind of the Astral inhabitant. And what is the p#rpose of all this theatrical ma*e$believe of the Astral yo# well as*. Ho# will see in a moment/ when 9 give yo# the *ey that #nloc*s the secret doors of the Astral life and its meaning. CHAPTER VIII. LIFE AND WORK ON THE ASTRAL. 1hat 9 have 4#st said regarding the nat#re of the astral scenery m#st not be ta*en as indicating that the Astral/ itself/ is merely imaginary or #nreal in any sense. >or is the s#bstance of which the scenery is composed any less real than the s#bstance of which the material world is composed. :n the material plane/ s#bstance manifests as matter; while on the astral plane it manifests in a finer form of <st#ff< or material. Again/ on the material plane/ the material/ or matter/ is shaped by the physical forces of nat#re/ or/ perhaps/ by the mind of man #sing the original material in order to b#ild <artificial< str#ct#res or forms. :n the Astral/ on the other hand the astral material is not thrown into shape by physical forces/ b#t is shaped and formed only by the tho#ght and imaginative power of the minds of those inhabiting that plane. 3#t these shapes/ forms and str#ct#res of the astral material are not to be tho#ght of as e2isting merely in the mind of the astral dwellers. They have an independent e2istence of their own/ being composed of astral material/ tho#gh shaped/ formed and b#ilt #p directly by the mind$power of the

astral dwellers/ instead of by the physical forces of nat#re. The astral scenery/ etc./ s#rvives the passing away of the mind which b#ilt it #p/ and disintegrates only after the passage of considerable time/ 4#st as do the material things on the earth plane. As for the power of the imagination of man/ do not be deceived for a moment $ for this is one of the most efficient powers in nat#re/ and operates strongly even on the material plane/ tho#gh on the Astral its power is more easily recogni0ed by the senses. To the dwellers on the Astral/ their scenery/ b#ildings/ etc./ are as solid as are those of the material plane to the dwellers there#pon. Passing thro#gh the vario#s s#b$planes/ and their divisions/ on the Astral yo# notice a great variety of scenery/ and a great difference in the character and occ#pations of the inhabitants. 3#t/ yo# notice one general characteristic #nderlying all of the differences/ namely/ the fact that all of these persons 5astral dwellers6 seem to be filled with an intense earnestness/ and manifest a degree of concentration which gives to them an appearance of being preocc#pied. This/ often/ to s#ch an e2tent that they seem to be oblivio#s to o#r presence and passage thro#gh their midst/ #nless we address them directly. Again/ everyone seems to be b#sy/ even when their tas*s are those of sport or play. The *ey to the occ#pation and p#rs#its of the dwellers on the Astral is fo#nd in the principle that the life of the so#l on the comparatively higher divisions of the Astral consists in a wor*ing o#t of the intellect#al desires/ and ordinary tendencies/ tastes/ li*es/ and aspirations which they were #nable to manifest f#lly in earth$life. 9 do not mean the low sens#al desires/ or p#rely animal tastes/ b#t rather the <ambitions< and similar forms of desires of strong inclinations. 7any of these inclinations may be very creditable and praise$worthy/ rather than otherwise/ b#t they are all concerned with physical manifestations/ rather than with spirit#al #nfoldment and evol#tion in the strict sense of these terms. The higher planes are those in which the spirit#al forces b#d and flower/ and bear fr#it $ the Astral/ even on its highest planes/ is the scene of the living$o#t/ and wor*ing$o#t/ of earthly intellect#al and similar ambitions and aspirations. The higher the plane of the Astral world/ the less are the old earth scenes in evidence/ even in the shape of the dim bac*gro#nd we saw as we progressed on o#r 4o#rney. As we mo#nted on the scale/ these old earth scenes grew very dim/ and where we are standing now/ on the fo#rth s#b$plane/ they are practically o#t of sight. This partic#lar s#b$plane is not partic#larly elevating/ b#t nevertheless is interesting to the st#dent. As we pass from scene to scene/ we see the <happy h#nting gro#nds< of the American 9ndians/ thic*ly settled with these old aborigines who have been dwelling there for =#ite a period of time. They are b#sy/ and happy h#nting their astral b#ffaloes/ and other game 5all artificially created by their imagination/ from the astral s#bstance/ and having no real

e2istence as living/ feeling animals6. A little f#rther on/ we witness similar forms of the <Spirit$land< of other primitive people/ in some of which the disembodied warriors fight and con=#er great hosts of artificial foes/ and then have great feasts according to their old c#stoms. Ialhalla is here/ as well as the other imaginary Paradises of the old races of men. 3#t their inhabitants are dwindling in n#mber/ being ca#ght #p in the c#rrent bearing them on to reincarnation. 3#t/ note this/ that while there is nothing elevating in the p#rs#its followed in these scenes/ there is nothing degrading or lowering/ from a strictly spirit#al point of view. 3#t/ there is in evidence always a living$o#t/ and wearing$o#t/ of the old desires of this *ind/ to ma*e room for higher ones $ all tends toward spirit#al evol#tion. aising o#r vibrations rapidly/ and passing over many degrees of scenes of this *ind/ we find o#rselves on a considerably higher plane. ,ere we see men engaged in what wo#ld be called <#sef#l wor*< in earth life. 3#t they are performing it not as labor/ b#t rather as a 4oyo#s recreation. :bserving closely/ yo# will see that the wor* is all of an inventive and constr#ctive nat#re. The men and women are perfecting that in which their interest was engaged while on earth life. They are improving on their wor*/ and are filled with the 4oy of creation. They remind one forcibly of Jipling@s mention of the f#t#re state when: <...no one shall wor* for money/ and no one shall wor* for fame; b#t each for the 4oy of the wor*ing.< :n some of these s#b$divisions we see the artist b#sily at wor*/ t#rning o#t wonderf#l masterpieces; also m#sicians creating great compositions/ of which they had vainly dreamt while in earth$life. The architect b#ilds great str#ct#res $ the inventor discovers great things. And all are filled with the 4oy of wor*/ and the ecstacy of creative imagination. 3#t/ ma*e not the mista*e/ st#dent/ of regarding this as merely play/ or as possibly a form of reward for well$done world wor*/ tho#gh/ of co#rse/ both of these elements play their part in the general wor*ing of the )aw. The main thing to remember is that in this wor* on the Astral/ there is an act#al mental advance and progress. 7oreover/ in many cases/ here on these very planes of the Astral there is being b#ilt the mo#ld from which will act#ally po#r great inventive and creative achievements/ on the material plane/ in the f#t#re incarnations of these so#ls now doing wor* on this plane. The Astral is the great pattern shop of the world. 9ts patterns are reprod#ced in matter when the so#l revisits the earth scenes. 7any a wor* of art/ m#sical composition/ great piece of literat#re/ or great invention/ has been b#t a reprod#ction of an Astral pattern. This will help to e2plain the feeling common to all great performers of creative/ imaginative or intellect#al wor* $ the strange feeling that their wor* is b#t a completion of something at which they had previo#sly wro#ght $ a re$discovery/ as it were. Again/ in this wor*$play of the Astral/ the so#l is always at wor* #sing #p old ideas/ aspirations/ etc./ and discarding them finally. 9n

this way real progress is made/ for after all even earth$life is seen to be largely a matter of <living$o#t and o#t$living< $ of mo#nting higher on the steps of each mista*e and each fail#re. 9n the wor* of the Astral many old ideas are wor*ed o#t and discarded: many old longings e2ha#sted and discarded; many old ambitions manifested and then left behind on the trail. There is a certain <b#rning #p/ and b#rning o#t< of old mental material/ and a place made for new and better material in the new earth life. :ften/ in this way/ on the Astral there is accomplished as m#ch in the direction of improvement and progress/ as wo#ld be possible only in =#ite a n#mber of earth$lives. )ife on the Astral is very earnest and intense $ the vibrations are m#ch higher than on the material plane. 3earing this principle in mind/ these Astral scenes which yo# are now witnessing ta*e on a great and new meaning. Ho# recogni0e them as very important schoolrooms in the great school of life. 1or* is being done here that can not be accomplished elsewhere. .verything has its meaning. There is no waste effort/ or #seless activity in the #niverse/ no matter what the careless observer may say to the contrary. The Astral is no 4o*e of the #niverse $ it is one of its great/ real wor*shops and laboratories of the so#l. 9t has its distinct place in the wor* of spirit#al #nfoldment and evol#tion. CHAPTER IX. HIGHER PLANES AND BEYOND. aising o#r vibrations a little/ we now enter #pon the great second s#b$plane of the Astral/ with its seven s#bdivisions and its many minor divisions and regions. Almost before 9 tell yo#/ yo# will feel the religio#s atmosphere pervading this region/ 8or this is the plane #pon which the religio#s aspirations and emotions find f#ll power of e2pression. :n this s#b$plane are many so#ls who have spent some time on the other s#b$planes of the Astral/ doing their wor* there and then passing on to these scenes in order to manifest this part of their nat#res. 3#t/ 9 wish to call yo#r attention to the occ#lt distinction between <spirit#ality< and <religion.< Spirit#ality is the recognition of the divine spar* within the so#l/ and the #nfoldment of the same into conscio#sness; while religion/ in the occ#lt sense/ consists of observance of certain forms of worship/ rites/ ceremonies/ etc./ the holding to certain forms of theology/ and the manifestation of what may be called the religio#s emotions. The religio#s instinct is deeply implanted in the hearts of men/ and may be called the stepping$stone toward tr#e spirit#ality $ b#t it is not spirit#ality itself. 9n its higher forms/ it is a bea#tif#l thing/ b#t in its lower ones it leads to narrowness and bigotry $ b#t it is a necessary step on the Path/ and all m#st mo#nt it in order to reach higher things.

This second s#b$plane of the Astral is filled with a m#ltit#de of so#ls each of whom is endeavoring to manifest and e2press his own partic#lar shade of religio#s conception. 9t may be said to contain all the heavens that have ever been dreamed of in theology/ and ta#ght in the ch#rches $ each filled with devotees of the vario#s creeds. .ach of the great religions has its own partic#lar region/ in which its disciples gather/ worship/ and re4oice. 9n each region the religio#s so#l finds <4#st what he had e2pected< and hoped to find on <the other shore.< Some remain content in their own place/ while others growing dissatisfied drift toward some s#b$region/ or gro#p/ which comes nearer to their newly awa*ened conception of tr#th. 9n passing rapidly thro#gh these regions/ yo# will find that each has its own partic#lar environment in e2act accordance with the beliefs of the persons inhabiting it. Some have the appearance of a plain/ old$fashioned meeting ho#se/ on an immense scale; while others resemble a gigantic cathedral/ filled with gorgeo#s decorations and paraphernalia/ and echoing with the so#nd of glorio#s litanies and other rit#alistic forms of worship. .ach has its officiating priests or preachers/ according to its reg#lations. Ho# see at a glance that the environment/ scenery/ b#ildings/ decorations/ etc./ are b#ilt #p from the astral s#bstance by the imaginative power of the minds of those congregating at each point. All the stage$setting and properties are fo#nd f#lly in evidence 59 say this in all serio#sness/ and with no attempt to be frivolo#s or flippant6 $ yo# may even see the golden crowns/ harps/ and stiff haloes/ in some cases/ and hear the so#nd of <the eternal chant of praise.< 9 regret to be compelled to call yo#r attention to the regions of some lower forms of religion/ in which there is a bac*gro#nd pict#re of a b#rning hell/ at which the devotees ga0e with satisfaction/ feeling the 4oy of heaven intensified by the sight of the s#ffering so#ls in hell. 9t is a satisfaction to tell yo# that the s#ffering so#ls/ and their hell/ are b#t fictitio#s things created by the imagination from the astral s#bstance $ a mere stage setting as it were. &ante@s 9nferno has its ade=#ate co#nterparts on the Astral Plane. 9 as* yo#/ partic#larly to ga0e #pon this most horrible scene before #s. A large severely f#rnished edifice is shown/ with seated congregation wearing stern/ hard/ cr#el faces. They ga0e toward the top of a smo*ing bottomless pit/ from which rises a sort of great/ endless chain/ each lin* having a h#ge sharp hoo* #pon which is impaled a doomed so#l. This so#l is s#pposed to rise to the top of the pit once in a tho#sand years/ and as each appears it is heard to cry in mo#rnf#l accents: <,ow long $ how longC< To this agoni0ed =#estion/ a deep stern voice is heard replying: <8oreverD 8oreverD< 9 am glad to tell yo# that this congregation is dwindling/ many evolving to higher conceptions/ and practically no new recr#its arriving from the earth$plane to fill the depleting ran*s. 9n time/ this congregation will disappear entirely/ and the ghastly stage scenery and properties will grad#ally dissolve into astral d#st and fade

from sight forever. All forms of religion/ high and low/ oriental and occidental/ ancient and modern/ are represented on this plane. .ach has its own partic#lar abode. 9t wo#ld delight the heart of a st#dent of comparative religion to visit these scenes. There are some bea#tif#l and inspiring scenes and regions on this plane/ filled with advanced so#ls and bea#tif#l characters. 3#t/ alas/ there are some rep#lsive ones also. 9t is marvello#s/ in viewing these scenes/ to reali0e how many forms h#man religion and theology has ta*en in its evol#tion. .very form of deity has its region/ with its worshippers. 9t is interesting to visit the scenes once filled with the worshippers of the most ancient religions. 7any have only a handf#l of worshippers remaining on this plane; while in some cases/ the worshippers have entirely disappeared/ and the astral scenery of the region/ its temples and shrines/ are cr#mbling away and disappearing 4#st as have the old temples disappeared on the material plane. :n the highest of the s#b$planes of the Astral we find many regions inhabited by the philosophers/ scientists/ metaphysicians/ and higher theologians of the race $ those who #sed their intellect#al power in striving to solve the iddle of the Gniverse/ and to peer 3ehind the Ieil/ by the #se of intellect alone. ,igh and low are met with here. There are as many schools of philosophy and metaphysics here/ as there were religio#s sects on the plane below. Some are pitif#lly wea*/ cr#de and childish in their conceptions $ others have advanced so far that they seem li*e demi$gods of intellect. 3#t even this is not tr#e <spirit#ality/< any more than is the religio#s formalism and dogmas of the plane below. All has its place/ however/ and everything is evolving and #nfolding. 9t is interesting to note then on this plane/ and the one below/ are to be fo#nd gro#ps of disembodied so#ls who persist in declaring that <there is no hereafter for the so#l;< <the so#l perishes with the body;< etc. These del#ded so#ls believe that they are still on the material plane/ in spite of appearances/ and they have b#ilt #p =#ite a good co#nterfeit earth$scenery to s#stain them. They sneer and sniff at all tal* of life o#tside of the physical body/ and bang their astral tables with their astral fists/ to prove how solid all real things are $ they believe only that which is solid and <real.< This/ indeed/ is the very irony of astral life. Ho# have noticed certain glorio#s forms on these regions/ st#dent/ as we have passed thro#gh these scenes/ and 9 have promised to inform yo# as to their character. These were those highly evolved beings/ once men li*e o#rselves/ who have vol#ntarily ret#rned from higher spheres to teach and instr#ct along the lines of religion and philosophy/ combining the best of both/ and leading #pward toward Tr#th those so#ls who have arrived at a possible #nderstanding of these things. 9t is verily tr#e/ on the Astral as well as on the earth plane/ that <when the p#pil is ready/ the 7aster appears.< The Astral has many/ very many of these .lder 3rothers of the

ace/ wor*ing diligently and earnestly for the #plift of those str#ggling on the Path. 9 may say here/ that an #nderstanding of the nat#re of the vario#s regions of the Astral/ and the scenes thereof/ will throw light #pon the fact that the reports of <the other side< given by disembodied so#ls at spirit#alistic seances/ etc./ are so f#ll of contradictions and discrepancies/ no two seeming to agree. The secret is that each is telling the tr#th as he sees it in the Astral/ witho#t reali0ing the nat#re of what they have seen/ or the fact that it is/ at the best/ merely one aspect among millions of others. Contrast the varying <heavens< 4#st mentioned/ and see how different the reports wo#ld be coming from some of their inhabitants. 1hen the nat#re of astral phenomena is once #nderstood/ the diffic#lty vanishes/ and each report is recogni0ed as being an attempt to describe the Astral pict#re #pon which the disembodied entity has ga0ed/ believing it to be act#al and real. 9 wish here to tell yo#/ st#dent/ some little abo#t the planes higher than the Astral. These planes transcend ade=#ate description. .no#gh to say/ here/ that each so#l on the Astral/ even the very lowest/ finally sin*s into an astral sl#mber when it has completed its wor* on that plane. 3efore passing on to rebirth/ however/ it awa*ens for a time #pon one of the s#bdivisions of the ne2t highest plane above the Astral. 9t may remain awa*e on this plane/ in its appropriate s#bdivision/ for merely a moment of time/ or for many cent#ries even/ depending #pon its state of spirit#al #nfoldment. &#ring this stay on these higher planes/ the so#l comm#nes with the higher phase of itself $ the divine fragment of Spirit $ and is strengthened and invigorated thereby. 9n this period of comm#nion/ m#ch dross of the nat#re is b#rnt o#t and dissolved into nothingness/ and the higher part of the nat#re is no#rished and enco#raged. These higher planes of 3eing constit#te the real <heaven world< of the so#l. The more highly advanced the so#l/ the longer does it abide between incarnations on these planes. F#st as the mind is developed and enabled to e2press its longings and ambitions/ on the Astral/ so is the higher portions of the so#l strengthened and developed on these higher planes. The 4oy/ happiness and spirit#al blessedness of these higher planes are beyond ordinary words. So wonderf#l are they/ that even long after the so#l has been born again on earth/ there will arise within it memories of its e2periences #pon those higher planes/ and it will sigh for a ret#rn to them/ as a dove sighs for its far$off home towards which its weary wings #rge its flight. :nce heard/ the harmony of the heaven$world is never forgotten $ its memories remain to strengthen #s in moments of trial and sorrow. These/ then/ are the real <heaven worlds< of the occ#lt teachings $ something far different from even the highest Astral planes. The reports of the mystics are based on e2periences on these planes/ not #pon those of the Astral. Ho#r so#l has tr#ly informed yo# regarding the reality of the e2istence of these wonderf#l regions and scenes $ it has not deceived yo#.

Therefore/ hold fast to the ideal and the vision $ follow the gleam/ follow the gleamD CHAPTER X. THE ASTRAL LIGHT. 9t m#st not be s#pposed for a moment that the Astral is simply a plane of >at#re created for a place of temporary abode and development for so#ls which have passed o#t of the physical body $ a mere stopping place between reincarnations. 9mportant as are the planes of the Astral in the progress of the disembodied so#ls/ they form b#t one phase of the activities of this great plane of >at#re.9ndeed/ even eliminating the disembodied so#ls from the Astral/ there wo#ld be eno#gh strange and wonderf#l phenomena on that plane/ as well as eno#gh wonderf#l inhabitants and dwellers on some of its s#b planes/ to still render it the place and region of interest that it always has been to occ#ltists. 3efore we finish o#t astral 4o#rney/ and ret#rn to earth life/ let #s ta*e a hasty glance at these wonderf#l phases of astral phenomena and life. T,. AST A) )9A,T. Changing o#r vibrations/ we find o#rselves entering a strange region/ the nat#re of which at first yo# fail to discern. Pa#sing a moment #ntil yo#r astral vision becomes att#ned to the pec#liar vibrations of this region/ yo# find that yo# are becoming grad#ally aware of what may be called an immense pict#re gallery/ spreading o#t in all directions/ and apparently bearing a direct relation to every point of space on the s#rface of the earth. At first yo# find it diffic#lt to decipher the meaning of this great array of pict#res. The tro#ble arises from the fact that they are arranged not one after the other in se=#ence on a flat plane/ b#t rather in se=#ence/ one after another in a pec#liar order which may be called the order of <?$ness in space/< beca#se it is neither the dimension of length/ breadth/ or depth $ it is practically the order of the fo#rth dimension of space/ which cannot be described in terms of ordinary spatial dimension. Again/ yo# find/ #pon closely e2amining the pict#res that they are very min#te $ practically microscopic in si0e $ and re=#ire the #se of the pec#liar magnifying power of astral vision to bring them #p to a si0e capable of being recogni0ed by yo#r fac#lty of vis#al recognition. The astral vision/ when developed/ is capable of magnifying any ob4ect/ material or astral/ to an enormo#s degree $ for instance/ the trained occ#ltist is able to perceive the whirling atoms and corp#scles of matter/ by means of this pec#liarity of astral vision. )i*ewise/ he is able to plainly perceive many fine vibrations of light which are invisible to the ordinary sight/ 9n fact/ the pec#liar Astral )ight which pervades this region is d#e to the power of the astral vision to receive and register these fine vibrations of light. 3ring this power of magnifying into operation/ yo# will see that each

of the little points and detail of the great world pict#re so spread before yo# in the Astral )ight/ is really a complete scene of a certain place on earth/ at a certain period in the history of the earth. 9t resembles one of the small views in $ a series of moving pict#res $ a single view on the roll of film. 9t is fi2ed and not in motion/ and yet. 1e can move forward along the fo#rth dimension/ and th#s obtain a moving pict#re of the history of any point on the s#rface of the earth/ or even combine the vario#s points into a larger moving pict#re/ in the same way. )et #s prove this by act#al e2periment. Close yo#r eyes for a moment/ while we travel bac* in time 5so to spea*6 along the series of these astral records $ for/ indeed/ they travel bac* to the beginning of the history of the earth. >ow open yo#r eyesD )oo*ing aro#nd yo#/ yo# perceive the pict#red representation of strange scenes filled with persons wearing a pec#liar garb $ b#t all is still/ no life/ no motion. >ow/ let #s move forward in time/ at a m#ch higher rate than that in which the astral views were registered. Ho# now see flying before yo# the great movement of life on a certain point of space/ in a far distant age. 8rom birth to death yo# see the life of these strange people/ all in the space of a few moments. Areat battles are fo#ght/ and cities rise before yo#r eyes/ all 9n a great moving pict#re flying at a tremendo#s speed. >ow stop/ and then let #s move bac*ward in time/ still ga0ing at the moving pict#res. Ho# see a strange sight/ li*e that of <reversing the film< in a moving pict#re. Ho# see everything moving bac*ward $ cities cr#mbling into nothingness/ men rising from their graves/ and growing yo#nger each second #ntil they are finally born as babes $ everything moving bac*ward in time/ instead of forward. Ho# can th#s witness any great historical event/ or follow the career of any great personage from birth to death $ or bac*ward. Ho# will notice/ moreover/ that everything is semi$transparent/ and that accordingly/ yo# can see the pict#re of what is going on inside of b#ildings as well as o#tside of them. >othing escapes the Astral )ight ecords. >othing can be concealed from it. Ho# have ga0ed at the great 1orld Pict#re in the ecords of the Astral )ight $ the great A*ashic ecords/ as we ,ind#s call it. 9n these records are to be fo#nd pict#res of every single event/ witho#t e2ception/ that has ever happened in the history of the earth $ recorded 4#st e2actly as it really happened/ moreover/ the record being #ltra$photographic and incl#ding the smallest detail. 3y travelling to a point in time/ on the fo#rth dimension/ yo# may begin at that point/ and see a moving pict#re of the history of any part of the earth from that time on to the present $ or yo# may reverse the se=#ence by travelling bac*ward/ as we have seen. Ho# may also travel in the Astral/ on ordinary space dimensions/ and th#s see what happened sim#ltaneo#sly all over the earth/ at any special moment of time/ if yo# wish.

As a matter of strict tr#th/ however/ 9 m#st inform yo# that the real records of the past $ the great A*ashic ecords $ really e2ist on a m#ch higher plane than the Astral/ and that which yo# have witnessed is b#t a reflection 5practically perfect/ however6 of the original records. 9t re=#ires a high degree of occ#lt development in order to perceive even this reflection in the Astral )ight/ and #naided by my own power yo# co#ld not perceive these sights at this time. An ordinary clairvoyant/ however/ is often able to catch occasional glimpses of these astral pict#res/ and may th#s describe fairly well the happenings of the past. 9n the same way/ the psychometrist/ given an ob4ect/ may be able to give the past history of the ob4ect/ incl#ding a description of the persons associated therewith. CHAPTER XI. ASTRAL ENTITIES. 1itho#t intending to go deeply into this s#b4ect $ for the same is reserved for the sole teaching of the advanced p#pil/ and m#st not be carelessly spread before others $ 9 thin* it well to call yo#r attention to the fact that on certain planes of the Astral/ there e2ist certain entities/ or living beings/ which never were h#man/ and never will be/ for they belong to an entirely different order of nat#re. These strange entities are ordinarily invisible to h#man beings/ b#t #nder certain conditions they may be sensed by the astral vision. Strictly spea*ing/ these strange beings do not dwell #pon the Astral at all $ that is/ not in the sense of the Astral as a part of space/ or a place. 1e call them Astral entities simply beca#se they become visible for the first time to man/ when he is able to vision on the Astral/ or by means of the Astral senses and for no other reason. So far as place/ or space/ is concerned these entities or being dwell #pon the earth/ 4#st as do the h#man beings. They vibrate differently from #s/ that is all. They are also #s#ally of b#t a microscopic si0e/ and wo#ld be invisible to the h#man eye even if they vibrated on the same plane as do we. The astral vision not only senses their vibrations/ #nder certain conditions/ b#t also/ #nder certain other conditions/ it magnifies their forms into perceptible si0e. Some of these astral entities are *nown as >at#re Spirits/ and inhabit streams/ roc*s/ mo#ntains/ forests/ etc. Their occasional appearance to persons of psychic temperament/ or in whom a degree of astral vision has been awa*ened/ has given rise to the n#mero#s tales and legends in the fol*$lore of all nations regarding a strange order of beings/ to which vario#s names have been given/ as for instance: fairies/ pi2ies/ elves/ brownies/ peris/ d4inns/ trolls/ satyrs/ fa#ns/ *obolds/ imps/ goblins/ little fol*/ tiny people/ etc./ etc./ and similar names fo#nd in the mythologies and legends of all people. The old occ#ltists called the

earth entities of this class by the name of <gnomes;< the air entities as <sylphs;< the water beings as <#ndines;< and the fire/ or ether/ beings as <salamanders.< This class of astral entities/ as a r#le/ avoid the presence of man/ and fly from places in which he dwells $ for instance they avoid large cities as men avoid a cemetery. They prefer the solit#des of nat#re/ and resent the onward march of men which drives them f#rther and f#rther into new regions. They do not ob4ect to the physical presence of man/ so m#ch as they do his mental vibrations which are plainly felt by them/ and which are very distastef#l to them. A certain class of them are what may be called <good fellows/< and these/ once in a while/ seem to find pleas#re in helping and aiding h#man beings to whom they have formed an attachment. 7any s#ch cases are related in the fol* lore of the older co#ntries/ b#t modern life has driven these friendly helpers from the scene/ in most places. Another class/ now also very #ncommon/ seems to find delight in playing elfish/ childish pran*s/ partic#larly in the nat#re of practical 4o*es #pon peasants/ etc. At spirit#alistic seances/ and similar places/ these elfish pran*s are sometimes in evidence. The ancient magicians and wonder wor*ers were often assisted by creat#res of this class. And/ even today in 9ndia/ Persia/ China/ and other :riental lands/ s#ch assistance is not #n*nown; and many of the wonderf#l feats of these magicians are attrib#table only to s#ch aid. As a r#le/ as 9 have said/ these creat#res are not #nfriendly to man/ tho#gh they may play a pran* with him occasionally/ #nder some circ#mstances. They stem partic#larly apt to play tric*s #pon neophytes in psychic research/ who see* to penetrate the Astral witho#t proper instr#ction/ and witho#t ta*ing the proper preca#tions. To s#ch a one they may appear as hideo#s forms/ monsters/ etc./ and th#s drive him away from the plane in which their presence may become apparent to him. ,owever/ they #s#ally pay no attention to the advanced occ#ltist/ and either severely let him alone/ or else flee his presence $ tho#gh cases are not #n*nown/ in the e2perience of the ma4ority of advanced occ#ltists/ when some of these little fol* seem an2io#s and willing to be of aid to the earnest/ conscientio#s in=#irer/ who recogni0es them as a part of nat#re@s great manifestation/ and not as an <#nnat#ral< creat#re/ or vile monstrosity. A T989C9A) .>T9T9.S. 9n addition to the nonh#man entities which are perceived by astral vision/ or on the Astral plane $ incl#ding a n#mber of varieties and classes other than those mentioned by me/ and to which 9 p#rposely have omitted reference for reasons which will be recogni0ed as valid by all tr#e occ#ltists $ there are to be fo#nd on the Astral or on the earth plane by means of astral vision/ a great class of entities/ or semi$entities/ which occ#ltists *now as <artificial entities<. These artificial entities were not born in the nat#ral manner/ nor created by the ordinary creative forces of nat#re. They are the creations

of the minds of men/ and are really a highly concentrated class of tho#ght$forms. They are not entities/ in the strict sense of the term/ having no life or vitality e2cept that which they borrow from/ or have been given by their creators. The st#dent of occ#ltism who has grasped the principle of the creation of tho#ght$forms/ will readily grasp the nat#re/ power/ and limitations of this class of dwellers in the Astral. The ma4ority of these artificial entities/ or tho#ght$forms/ are created #nconscio#sly by persons who manifest strong desire$force/ accompanied by definite mental pict#res of that which they desire. 3#t many have learned the art of creating them conscio#sly/ in an elementary form of magic/ white or blac*. 7#ch of the effect of tho#ght$force/ or mind$power/ is d#e to the creation of these tho#ght$forms. Strong wishes for good/ as well as strong c#rses for evil/ tend to manifest form and a semblance of vitality in the shape of these artificial entities. These entities/ however/ are #nder the law of tho#ght$attraction/ and go only where they are attracted. 7oreover/ they may be ne#trali0ed/ and even destroyed/ by positive tho#ght properly directed in the way *nown to all advanced st#dents along these lines. Another/ and =#ite a large/ class of these artificial Astral entities/ consist of tho#ght$forms of s#pernat#ral 5D6 beings/ sent o#t by the strong mental pict#res/ oft repeated/ of the persons creating them $ the creator #s#ally being #nconscio#s of the res#lt. 8or instance/ a strongly religio#s mother/ who prays for the protective infl#ence of the angels aro#nd and abo#t her children/ and whose strong religio#s imagination pict#res these heavenly visitors as sent by the side of the children/ fre=#ently act#ally creates tho#ght$forms of s#ch angel g#ardians aro#nd her children/ who are given a degree of life and mind vibrations from the so#l of the mother. 9n this way/ s#ch g#ardian angels/ so created/ serve to protect the children and warn them from evil and against temptation. 7any a pio#s mother has accomplished more than she reali0ed by her prayers and earnest desires. The early fathers of the ch#rches/ occidental and oriental; were aware of this fact/ and conse=#ently bade their followers to #se this form of prayer and tho#ght; tho#gh they did not e2plain the tr#e #nderlying reason. .ven after the mother has passed on to higher planes/ her loving memory may serve to *eep alive these tho#ght$form entities/ and th#s serve to g#ard her loved ones. 9n a similar way/ many <family ghosts< have been created and *ept in being in the same way/ by the constantly repeated tale and belief in their reality/ on the part of generation after generation. 9n this class belong the celebrated historic ghosts who warn royal or noble families of approaching death or sorrow. The familiar family ghosts wal*ing the walls of old castles on certain anniversaries/ are #s#ally fo#nd to belong to this class 5tho#gh not always so6. 7any ha#nted ho#ses are e2plained in this way/ also the ghost may be

<laid< by anyone familiar with the laws of tho#ght$forms. 9t m#st be remembered that these artificial entities are of p#rely h#man creation/ and obtain and their apparent and mind from the action of the tho#ght$force of their creators. epeated tho#ght/ and repeated belief/ will serve to *eep alive and to strengthen these entities otherwise they will disappear in time. 7any s#pernat#ral visitors/ saints/ semi$divine beings/ etc./ of all religions have been formed in this way/ and/ in many cases/ are *ept 9n being by the faith of the devotees of the ch#rch/ chapel/ or shrine. 9n many temples in oriental co#ntries/ there have been created/ and *ept alive for many cent#ries/ the tho#ght$form entities of the minor gods and saints/ endowed in tho#ght with great power of response to prayer/ offering/ and ceremonies. Those accepting the belief in these powers/ are bro#ght into harmony with its vibrations/ and are effected thereby/ for good or evil. The power of the devils of savage races 5some of whom practically are devil$worshippers/ arise in the same way. .ven in the early history of the western religions/ we find many references to the appearance of the &evil/ and of his evil wor*; witchcraft diabolical presences/ etc./ all of which were created tho#ght$form entities of this *ind. 7any of the effects of sorcery/ blac*$magic/ etc./ were prod#ced in this way $ the element of belief/ of co#rse/ adding greatly to the effect. The Ioodoo practices of Africa/ and later/ of 7artini=#e; and the Jah#na practices of ,awaii/ are based on these same principles. The effect of <charms/< etc./ depend on the same laws/ incl#ding the effect of faith. .ven certain forms of <spirits/< so$called/ of certain forms of spirit#alistic seances arise from this principle/ and have never been h#man beings/ at all. An #nderstanding of this principle will aid in the interpretation of many p#00ling phases of psychic phenomena. <SP9 9T .TG >.< >othing that 9 have said m#st be ta*en as denying the reality and validity of what the western world *nows as <spirit ret#rn.< :n the other hand/ 9 am f#lly familiar with very many instances of the real ret#rn to earth$life of disembodied so#ls. 3#t at the same time/ 9/ as well as all other advanced occ#ltists/ are e=#ally aware of the many chances of mista*e in this class of psychic phenomena. Shades/ and even astral shells/ too often are mista*en for departed loved ones. Again/ many apparently real <spirit forms< are nothing more or less than semi$vitali0ed tho#ght$form artificial entities s#ch as 9 have 4#st described. Again/ many medi#ms are really clairvoyant/ and are able to #nconscio#sly draw to some e2tent #pon the Astral ecords for their information regarding the past/ instead of receiving the comm#nication from a disembodied so#l $ in all honesty and in good faith/ in many cases. :cc#ltism does not deny the phenomena of modern western spirit#alism $ it merely see*s to e2plain its tr#e nat#re/ and to verify some of it while pointing o#t the real nat#re of others. 9t sho#ld be welcomed as an ally/

by all tr#e spirit#alists. AST A) I9S9:>. 9t m#st not be s#pposed that the astral vision dawns s#ddenly #pon anyone/ in f#ll force. ather is it a matter of slow grad#al development in the ma4ority of cases. 7any persons possess it to a faint degree/ and fail to develop it f#rther/ for want of proper instr#ction. 7any persons have occasional flashes of it/ and are entirely witho#t it at other times. 7any <feel< the astral vibrations/ rather than seeing with the astral vision. :thers/ gain a degree of astral vision by means of crystal ga0ing/ etc. That which is fre=#ently referred to as <psychic sight/< or <psychic sensing/< is a form of astral visioning or sensing. Psychism is bo#nd #p with astral phenomena/ in all cases. 9n this little man#al/ 9 have so#ght to give yo#/ in a few lines/ the great #nderlying facts of the Astral Plane. 9 have crowded very m#ch into a very small space/ so that yo# will have to read and st#dy my words very caref#lly/ in order to get the f#ll meaning. 9n fact/ this is not a boo* to be read on and then laid aside $ rather/ it sho#ld be re$read and re$st#died/ #ntil all the essence is e2tracted. The glimpses of a n#mber of the s#b$planes of the Astral sho#ld give yo# a general/ clear idea of many other scenes on that great plane. emember/ these scenes are typical of those witnessed by any advanced occ#ltist who is able to travel on those planes $ as yo#/ yo#rself/ may verify when yo# are able to vision on these planes. They are #nder$drawn/ rather than overdrawn. Some of the more startling and <sensational< scenes have been omitted altogether/ as 9 have no desire to attract/ or cater to/ those see*ing sensation $ my wor* is for the earnest st#dent/ alone. Gse this man#al as a *ey to #nloc* many mysteries not as a boo* to while away an idle ho#r. &o not have any <idle ho#rs.< &o not try to <*ill time.< 3e an earnest/ tho#ghtf#l/ occ#ltist/ ever #nfolding and evolving as yo# progress along The PathD )oo* 8orward/ not 3ac*wardD )oo* Gpward/ not &ownwardD ,ave 8aith/ not 8earD 8or/ within yo#r so#l is a Spar* of the &ivine 8lame/ which cannot be e2ting#ishedD