The Word Foundation



Vol. 13 JULY, 1911. No. 4

Copyright, 1911, by H. W. PERCIVAL.



IN the last article it was said that man’s physical body is the shadow of his invisible form, and that like as a shadow shifts or disappears when the object which causes it is removed, so a physical body dies and disintegrates when its invisible form body is severed from it. Human physical bodies are not the only physical shadows in the world. All physical bodies are shadows. Like as a man’s physical make-up is the visible shadow of his invisible form, so is this seemingly solid physical world, and so are all physical things on and in it, the visible shadows made out of the plastic and invisible matter precipitated from the invisible form world. As shadows, all physical things can last only as long as the invisible forms which cause them shall last. As shadows, all physical things shift or change as the forms through which they are precipitated shift and change, or disappear altogether when the light which projects and makes them visible goes out.

Shadows are of three kinds and may be perceived in three of the four manifested worlds. There are physical shadows, astral shadows and mental shadows. Physical shadows are all the things and objects in the physical world. The shadows of a stone, a tree, a dog, a man, are different not merely in shape, but in essence. There are different properties in each such shadow. Astral shadows are all things in the astral world. Mental shadows are the thoughts created by the mind in the mental world. There are no shadows in the spiritual world.

When one looks at what he calls his shadow he does not see his actual shadow, he sees only the obscured space or outline of light caused by his physical body obstructing the light to which his eyes are sensible. The actual shadow which is projected by the light, invisible to the eye, is not usually seen. The actual shadow is not of the physical body, but of the form of the physical body. The physical body is also the shadow of this form. There are two shadows of the invisible form. The physical shadow of the invisible form is seen; the actual shadow is not ordinarily seen. Yet this actual shadow more truly represents and depicts the invisible form of the physical body than does the physical body. The physical body, the visible shadow, shows the outer expression of the form and hides the interior condition. The visible physical shadow exhibits surfaces only and is seen, superficially. The actual shadow shows the entire condition of the form and is seen through and through. The actual shadow is a projection of the astral form into the visible physical world; but it is astral in character and is not physical. The visible body is also a projection of the invisible form, or rather a precipitation of physical matter into the invisible form. The actual shadow may be and often is maintained apart from the form through which it is projected. The physical body cannot be maintained apart from its astral form body into which the formless matter of which it is made is precipitated. The physical body is therefore more characteristic of what is called a shadow than the actual shadow, because the physical body is more dependent, less permanent and more subject to change, than the invisible form or its actual shadow. All physical objects are the visible shadows in the physical world of invisible forms in the astral world.

Astral shadows are not cast in the astral world, as the shadow of an object is in the physical world, in as much as light in the astral world does not come from an astral sun as sunlight comes in the physical world. Shadows in the astral world are projections of copies of the forms of things in that world. The forms of the astral world are projections or shadows not copies of thoughts in the mental world. Thoughts in the — — mental world are emanations from the minds in that world. The thoughts or emanations in the mental world are projections by the light of the spiritual world, of the types of the spiritual world through the minds acting in the mental world. The physical objects in the physical world are the shadows of the forms in the astral world. The forms of the astral world are the shadows of thoughts in the mental world. The thoughts and ideals of the mental world are the shadows of the types or ideas in the spiritual world.

The four factors in the making of a shadow the light, the — background, the object, and its shadow before mentioned, have their — origins and places in the different worlds. Light in each of the lower worlds has its origin in the spiritual world. Streaming through the mental and astral and into the physical from the spiritual world, light appears or is sensed as being different in the lower worlds from that which it is known to be in the spiritual world. Light is the intelligence of the spiritual world. In the mental world light is the power by which the mind perceives ideals, carries on its mental operations and processes of thinking, and projects its thoughts into its own or either of the lower worlds. In the astral world light is the principle which stimulates and causes all forms and matter to show their particular natures and be attracted according to their kinds and to appear to the senses after the kind of the particular nature. Light in the physical world is the focussing to a center and an action from that center of a small portion of the light of the other worlds. Light is the conscious principle in each of the worlds. Light is that by which and in which, as on a background, all things appear and are perceived or realized in any of the worlds. The background on which all thoughts appear, is the mental world. The forms or images of the astral world are the objects which are cast as physical shadows and are usually called realities in the physical world.

Today, man stands in his outermost shadow, his physical body; but he does not know that it is his shadow; he does not see nor does he try to distinguish between his shadows and himself. He identifies himself with his shadows, not knowing that he does it. So he lives in this physical world of shadows and sleeps carelessly on or moves restlessly and frets on through the night of his troubled sleep; he dreams of shadows and dreams his shadows into existence, and believes that shadows are realities. Man’s fears and troubles must continue while he believes shadows to be realities. He quiets fear and ceases to trouble when he awakes to reality and knows shadows to be shadows.

If a man is to be unafraid of shadows and not to be borne down by them, he must think of and know himself to be something distinct from and superior to any of his shadows. If man will think of himself as distinct from his shadows, in which he is, he will learn to know himself as he is and will see his shadows one by one and will learn how his shadows are related and put together and how he may make use of them at their best value.

Man, the real man, is a conscious intelligent and spiritual sphere of light. In the earliest times, which was the beginning of things, and for a reason best known in the spiritual world of light, man as a spiritual light looked out from his sphere of light. As he did, he perceived his light to be projected in the mental world. And he thought, and entered the mental world. As a thinker by his mental light, man looked into the astral or psychic world and projected his thought, and his thought took form. And he as a thinker thought of himself as being that form and desired so to be. And he was in that form and sensed himself as a man of form. Sensing his form, man looked through the astral or psychic world and desired to see his form, and his desire was projected as the shadow of his form. And as he looked at that shadow he longed for it and thought to enter and unite with it. He did enter into and dwell with it and took up his abode in it. So, ever since that early time, he has projected his forms and their shadows and lived in them. But shadows cannot last. So as often as he casts himself into form and projects and enters his physical shadow, so often must he leave the physical shadow and his form and return to his heaven, the mental world. He cannot enter his sphere in the spiritual world of light until he learns of shadows, and knows himself as the spiritual light while still living in the physical shadow world. When he knows this, his physical body will be to him a shadow only. He will be unattached to and unhampered by his form of sense. He can still his thoughts. Knowing himself as a spiritual light, he may enter his sphere of light. Such a man, if it be his work to return to the physical world, may shine through his shadows in all the worlds without again being obscured by them.

(To be concluded.)