THINKING AND DESTINY
Harold W. Percival
THE GREAT WAY
Entering The Way. A new life opens. Advances on the form, life, and light paths. The lunar, solar, and light germs. Bridge between the two nervous systems. Further changes in the body. The perfect, immortal, physical body. The three inner bodies for the doer, the thinker, the knower of the Triune Self, within the perfect physical body.
When one enters The Way he is away from all his connections and associations. The world in which he has lived is left behind. The human, by the opening of the seal and entrance on The Way, feels a great joy, such as he has never before felt. The joy is not thrilling, spasmodic or ecstatic; it is steady and from a source within. All things seem to reflect that joy. The joy is feeling progressively safety, permanence and assurance that he will come into his own. The joy can last for months.
Gradually a new life opens. It extends from within and reaches the outer world. Everything is different from what it seemed before. The world has not changed, but it looks different because he and his body are different, he knows himself to be a being distinct from nature and from his body. He identifies feeling, if he has not done so before.
He seems to be in the heart of the world. Before, he felt its pull, now he feels its pulse. Before, only the outer world could act on him, now an inner world, the form world, begins from within to open to him. There is a direct interplay between the doer-in-the-body and the non-embodied portions of the doer. The psychic atmosphere is felt; and through the physical atmosphere is felt the form world.
By feeling this new world he is able to feel nature in the physical world and how things act and move as they do. He feels the crystallization of minerals, the seeding, feeding, growing and dying of plants, the impulses and instincts of animals, the movements of the earth, of the water and of the air, the influences coming from and going to the sun and the moon, the interaction of the planets and the beings on the earth, and the relation of the stars to mankind and the universe. He feels all these in their four zones working within the four systems of his fourfold body and he feels the organs of his systems working in the universe.
There comes a tendency to be clairvoyant and clairaudient. Scenes and persons flash across the view. If he thinks of anyone, that one is seen and his voice is heard, without intention or effort to see or hear. The tasting or smelling of objects comes without seeking, when they are thought of. The inner side of the four senses seeks to manifest. The senses begin to act in the fluid, airy and radiant states as they did in the subdivisions of the solid state. These phenomena must be disregarded; this inner side of the senses must not be allowed to develop, else the inner life will flow outward.
At this period the wish for possessions or the wish to see or communicate with elementals will be fulfilled at once, because elemental beings which obey the powers working within him carry out his wishes. These elementals are hidden from him unless he wants to see them and command them. He has not yet transformed malice, anger, hatred, lust and the other vices into higher powers though he has control of their physical expression; if he should allow an old dislike to make him wish harm to anyone, or allow a liking to cause him to wish a gift to someone, he would unleash nature forces which he had controlled and they would throw him off The Way. Longing for or attachment to anything he has left behind will pull him back and away from The Way.
The feeling-mind and the desire-mind gradually control the body-mind, as these develop. New mental activities develop. The man on The Way now deals with the constituents, combinations and solvents of the matter of the different planes of the physical world and of the planes up to the life plane of the form world. He can deal with this matter as it is, as a fact, and not in a theoretical manner. He need use no instruments other than the organs of his fourfold body and the three minds. By this mental working he changes the matter of his body and aids the growing form body.
During this advance there are periods of exaltation, depression and illumination. They are caused by the exclusion of the surrounding chaos and the infusion of life into the growing form body. He no longer feels himself out into the world, but feels the outer world within his fourfold body. The beings, colors and sounds of thousandfold nature are within this body. The elemental matter of the earth, the water, the air and the starlight, flows through his body and he is conscious of it. He becomes accustomed to and intimate with nature. If he allows himself to be tempted to wield the forces which move through his body or to command nature outside of him by the power within him, he is off The Way.
He must not feel temptation. It must be a stranger to him. When the fullness of nature is within him and there is no inducement for him to interfere with it and to exercise his power over it, except to exclude influences adverse to the development of the form body, nature falls away. Then he is alone and in darkness.
All forms and colors are gone. There is no sound. There are no means to operate the four senses, because there is nothing to see, nothing to hear, nothing to taste, nothing to smell, nothing to contact, and feeling is stilled. He stays in darkness, but he is conscious. There is nothing by which to measure time. If the darkness overwhelms him, it remains. If he fears, if he longs for it to go, it remains. When it cannot influence him or evoke any reaction he becomes conscious that there are things in the darkness. Gradually they stand out. He can see some, he can hear some. They seem strange and yet as intimate as if they were parts of himself. All the emotions and passions, all the evils which he believed he had overcome, bear in on him. They would enter him. If he has not changed them sufficiently before, they can now gain entrance. He does not let them. They want to make him fear them, run away from them or shut off the sensing of them. He will do none of these things. They do not leave him. He searches into them and finds they are a part of him. He becomes conscious that they are his unbalanced thoughts. This is a shock to him. As he stands the shock he begins to balance them. When he has balanced them, others come. This continues until his thoughts are balanced.
The darkness vanishes as light comes. A calm and peace come with the light. The earth loses its power over him. The ties which his thoughts had forged about him are worn away and he is free from them and the attractions of the world. He has distinguished and identified feeling and desire.
Before and after this advance is made, various changes take place in the body. On the form path of The Way in the body, an impregnated lunar germ has opened the seal and has entered the filament of the spinal cord; a bridge has been built between the front-cord and the filament, whereby the involuntary nervous system is directly connected at the coccyx with the voluntary nervous system, (Fig. VI-C, D). At this time a new epoch begins for the human. He enters the form path; he feels the nervous currents that are turned on when the connection is made between the front- or nature-cord and the spinal cord, the cord for the Triune Self. Prior to the opening of the seal at the terminal filament, every sensation, impulse and communication in that region had to go by way of the pairs of voluntary nerves which pass through the openings of the sacral and lumbar vertebrae. While these old connections still exist, the new connection changes and rearranges the involuntary and voluntary systems at once.
Formerly, he felt himself to be the body, and nature impressions coming into it by way of the involuntary system passed into its tissues and organs; now, he distinguishes and identifies himself as being the doer; humanity communicates with him; he feels its hopes and fears, its loves and hates, its longings, emotions and aspirations, and the thoughts of others; they enter through the sense organs, and by way of the continuous canal that now runs through the two nervous systems, they pass into the nerve structures that replace what formerly were organs in the cavities of the body, and connect with the stations and centers that are being opened to the three beings now in process of development.
Various other changes in the organs of the body and their functioning accompany progress on The Way. The kidneys become less active in the work hitherto done, and the testicles or ovaries are drawn towards them. The bloodstream gradually ceases to build and maintain the body; it acts more as a conveyer of nervous force than as a carrier of nutrition. Nutriment is taken in by the breath directly from the four states of matter. The brain takes and sends impressions more easily than was possible before. The spinal cord takes on more and more the appearance of brain structure; its central canal becomes larger, and the terminal filament, which is now atrophied from disuse, is greatly enlarged; its central canal, which at present is threadlike and is lost on its way to the end of the filament, is widened and reaches to the very tip of the filament, (Fig. VI-A, d). The intestinal tract ceases to be a feeding tube and a sewer, and the anus disappears. The stomach and the small intestine are then superfluous and disappear.
The large bowel or colon, then serving a new purpose, becomes part of a nerve structure, similar to the spinal cord, termed the front- or nature-cord. This cord with its lateral branches is made up of the former esophagus, of the two cords and the plexuses and the widespread ramifications of the involuntary nervous system, and of the colon. The middle of the three bands that run along the outer wall of the colon, becomes hollowed out, and around this slender canal is arranged the colon, greatly reduced in length and width, so that only a short, narrow tubular cord remains, as part of the front-cord. Included in the front-cord are the right and the left vagus nerves, with their ramifications. It is situated in front of the abdominal cavity and is slightly curved from before backward, pointing towards the tip of the terminal filament of the voluntary nervous system.
This front-cord becomes enclosed in a resilient structure, here spoken of as the front- or nature-column. This takes the place of the sternum and is extended to and is continuous with the greatly changed pelvic bowl. The body is thus a two-columned body.
The front-column and the front-cord correspond to the spinal column and the spinal cord behind. The lumbar, dorsal and cervical sections of the spinal cord will be the form path, the life path, and the light path, along which the lunar and the solar germs are to travel when the bridge between the two nervous systems will have been built. Then there is a continuous central canal running down within the front-cord, across the bridge, and upward within the spinal cord, (Fig. VI-D).
From the front-cord pairs of nerves begin to grow outward, towards the corresponding pairs of nerves coming from the spinal cord. The coiled serpent of mythology becomes a tree.
The bridge that is built for the passage of the lunar germ from the involuntary nervous system to the voluntary, extends from the coccygeal ganglion to the terminal filament of the spinal cord by way of communicating branches of nerves which even now connect the two nervous systems.
When the lunar germ had returned to the head for the thirteenth time, it was infused with light from the solar germ. The next time it descends, it passes downward to reach the tip of the filament, by way of the bridge, which by then has been built. When the lunar germ has entered the filament, it travels along the form path, is thereby in touch with the non-embodied portions of the doer, and develops into an embryonic form body for the doer. By the time the embryonic form body has reached the place where the filament leads into the spinal cord, at about the first lumbar vertebra, it fills the filament. The physical body is on its way to become a perfect, immortal, sexless physical body.
The embryonic form body which is of matter of the form world, goes through many phases, just as a physical embryo does. These phases put it in touch with the planes of the physical world and with those of the form world.
The phases are not summaries of the past, but are promises of the future, and resemble a globe, an egg, a column and a human-like form. The psychic atmosphere and the doer are the sources from which the development of the form body is urged along. When the embryonic form body is fully developed it has reached the end of the form path. Feeling-and-desire are now in agreement, and the feeling-mind and the desire-mind are under control, self-control.
At this time the aspirant must make a choice. If he chooses to continue his advance, the form body does not issue; he ascends from the filament into the central canal of the spinal cord, and thereby enters the life path, the second section of The Great Way; if he were to forego further progress, the embryonic form body would emerge from the filament, pass by way of the present solar plexus and issue from the place where now the navel is. But he goes on.
The proper choice for the human is The Threefold Way, The Great Way, and not to issue into the form world. This choice, and the only one here dealt with at length, is the choice to continue until the light body issues and the Triune Self is a Triune Self complete and is a being of the form, the life, and the light worlds. Issuing of the form body into the form world would inhibit the development of a life body for the thinker and of a light body for the knower of the Triune Self. To go on, the human must develop a life body and a light body, in addition to a form body, out of the physical body. The choice is an actual decision. It has been prepared by previous desiring, thinking and living for this event. By such desiring and thinking the foundation is laid for entering on the life path and, later, for entering on the light path of The Great Way. The choice for entering on the life path is made by the thinker at the request of the doer, because the doer desires it ardently.
A life body can be developed only if the human—long before he enters on the form path—desires to know who he is and what in him is the permanent and continuously conscious One, identity-and-knowledge. With this desiring will come thinking, as that follows desire. The thinking will be adjusted to that at which desire aims, and this will give Light concerning what is to be thought and what is to be done. The thinking will turn around how to be conscious as the permanent and continuously conscious One.
There are some changes in the physical body in addition to those given, which will obtain when the human enters the life path. Nerves not now visible, potential nerves, will become active and will affect chiefly the lungs and the heart. The lungs will then be more like the cerebrum, and the heart with the aorta, the thymus and other glands, like the cerebellum and pons.
When one has made the choice an illumination takes place. The desire-mind, after the thoughts for psychic matters were balanced, began to act quickly and with certainty, instead of slowly, inaccurately and with confusion, as it does with humans. After the illumination has come, the mental atmosphere in which the Light has been a diffused Light, becomes clearer. Subjects the doer thinks about or into which he thinks are shown by the Light he turns towards them. Darkness and ignorance flee before that Light. He understands the inner workings of things. Because of the Light he has, his comprehension takes the place of apprehension through the four senses. The feeling-mind and desire-mind take the place and answer all purposes of seeing and hearing. They work over problems connected with the physical world, which he now understands. Following the choice, a connection is made with the non-contacting portion of the thinker, and a communication between that and its contacting portion follows. More of the thinker is in contact as the body becomes fitted for contact. It is as though the body lived in a new world. He senses his mental atmosphere and through the physical atmosphere the life world. He senses by means of nerves, old nerves which have been remodeled and new nerves which have been developed.
In consequence of the illumination and the more intimate and fuller connection, he gets powers. These are mental, not psychic. Among them are the powers to deal with units on any plane of the life world, to separate, merge, amalgamate and combine them, to speak them into being in the life world and so create new types and laws dealing with them, which will later appear in the form and physical worlds. He knows of his powers, but he also knows that he should not use them. These powers come from thinking in connection with rightness-and-reason.
All thoughts have been balanced. Before they were balanced they interfered and made impossible the thinking he is able to engage in now. Before the desire in them was released, it took away from the power to think on the life path; now it is ready to aid. There is a brighter Light stream because of the Light which was reclaimed at the balancing. Now there is nothing to prevent real thinking, nothing to interfere with thinking that does not create thoughts. Thinking with rightness and reason holds the Light steadily towards a subject. That to whom thinking is directed is the knower. Rightness receives Light not only from its mental atmosphere but also from selfness, and reason works with it as the Light shows what work should be done. Such thinking turns the mental power on the embryonic life and light bodies going up the spinal cord, and, as they progress, more of the thinker contacts and operates through the embryonic life body.
The solar germ which was being prepared, by thinking, for a future development into a life body, descends in the right hemisphere of the spinal cord and is ready to enter the central canal, and to begin its development into an embryonic life body. When the embryonic form body has attained its full growth and fills the terminal filament, and when the choice is made for the life path, the solar germ meets the embryonic form body at the upper end of the filament, the end of the form path, and, instead of ascending in the left hemisphere of the cord as it had previously done, it unites with the embryonic form body, and together they pass into the central canal of the spinal cord. This is the time of the choice, of the illumination and of the connection with the now embodying thinker. The doer on The Way now thinks with the minds for feeling-and-desire and for rightness-and-reason. All four minds work harmoniously. They are in union. As the doer develops in union with rightness-and-reason, the embryonic life body is also developed. It grows up within the embryonic form body, which is its vehicle. More of the thinker is embodied. When these two bodies traveling up the spinal cord have come to the seventh cervical vertebra, the embryonic life body has reached its full development within the embryonic form body. The minds of rightness and of reason are under control, and the end of the life path has been reached.
The perfect physical body is at this stage largely a body of nerves. The pairs of nerves coming from the spinal cord and the corresponding pairs issuing from the nature-cord in front ramify and embrace each other. The tissues of the circulatory and respiratory systems have become nerves. The organs in the body have become centers of nerves. These nerves are not of the coarse structure found in a human body, but are radiant, luminous lines. Instead of being half paralyzed or deadened, as are the bodies of the run of humans, such a body is alive. The sternum, now part of the front-column, is flexible and extends to and blends with the pelvis. Half-arches extend laterally from both sides of the lower vertebrae, somewhat as the upper ribs do now, connecting the dorsal and lumbar vertebrae with the front-column. The bones have become resilient, and the marrow in them has turned into luminous matter. The shape of the body is still human, with a head, trunk and limbs; but there is no gross matter in such a body. Its grossest matter consists of cells in parts of the organs and in the skin, which cells are sexless or bi-sexed.
Another choice must be made when the embryonic life body has reached its growth. It is then ready either to issue with the breath from the spinal cord through the throat out of the mouth into the life world, or to take the light path. If the determination is to be a being of the life world, the embryonic life body will issue.
But as the choice will be to take the light path, the life body does not issue. Though previous desiring and thinking will have predisposed, the choice has to be made.
When the choice is made and the light path is taken, the human—still called here by that name though he became more than a human before he came to the end of the form path—no longer thinks. He knows. The knowing takes in the previous desiring and thinking. It is an instantaneous process of desiring to know, thinking, and knowing a thing. The knowing takes in at the same time the idea in the light world, the subject in the life world, the object in the form world and the reflected shadow and appearance of the object in the physical world.
The human then knows the history, the continuous system, of the four worlds of the earth sphere. He knows the manifested side of the light world, and the manifested and the unmanifested sides of the life, form, and physical worlds. He knows about the beings and events on the first, second and third earths and about the Civilizations and changes on this fourth earth. He knows the history of the doers on the earth crust and the history of some of the beings and races of the layers within the earth crust. He knows the earth forces and how to direct and control them; but he does not use them. He knows the immortal Government in The Realm of Permanence where he will be one of the governors of this man and woman world of change. The human has feelings and desires as much finer and more potent than he had before he discovered the emptiness of the world and the futility of human efforts, as the power of the sun is greater than that of a candle. He controls his feelings and desires, by thinking. Feeling, desiring and thinking are as one in and with knowledge.
When the embryonic life body has attained its full development and has risen in the central canal of the spinal cord to the seventh cervical vertebra, it is met by a light germ from the pituitary body. The light germ comes from that part of the knower which contacts or is in the pituitary body. It descends through the canal of the spinal cord within the cervical vertebrae, meets and enters into the ascending embryonic life body at the seventh cervical vertebra and opens the way for the life body to ascend the light path, and the light germ itself is developed into an embryonic body of light. That light is greater than sunlight, yet eyes cannot see it. So the three, the embryonic form body, the embryonic life body and the embryonic light body, rise together on the light path. The human during this time comes into his knowledge about the things mentioned. When the three embryonic bodies have passed the first cervical vertebra the human has come to the end of the light path.
By the time The Way in the body has been completed with the development of the light body, the end of The Way of thinking has been attained by the control of the minds of I-ness-and-selfness, and the end of The Way in the interior of the earth has been reached by the physical body, which is now a perfected, regenerated, immortal, sexless physical body.
When the three embryonic bodies have passed into the third ventricle of the brain, (Fig. VI-A, a), and as they approach the pineal body, the pituitary body sends a light stream to the pineal which opens to let the three ascending bodies enter and to receive another light stream which then, through the top of the head, comes from the knower into the pineal body. The light streams enter into and are united in the embryonic light body.
At this time the portions of the thinker and the doer not in or in contact with the body, descend into their respective parts of the spinal cord and enter their embryonic life and form bodies. So the knower, thinker, and doer inhabit the immortal fourfold physical body, and all twelve portions of the doer which formerly re-existed successively, now are embodied together and are in union.
The knower, thinker, and doer of the Triune Self, in their light, life, and form bodies, ascend through the roof of the head, are in the light world, and in the presence of the Great Triune Self of the worlds.
The light body ascends into the world; but the life and form bodies do not come forth; they cannot take being in the light world. The light body has no form, but from the human standpoint it would be conceived of as a globe of light, and light is invisible.
As the light body ascends, the knower enters into and functions through the light body apart from the physical body; and the thinker and doer are still. The doer knows that it has ever been there. Never was there such a thing as its not being there. It does not consider this, because there is no question about it. The knower never left the light world. In all re-existences after its first existence, only portions of the doer were successively embodied, and these portions were as though shut off from the light world. This is why the portion in and as the human did not know about the non-embodied portions. Now that there is unity in its portions, the doer is conscious that it never really left the light world. The doer now knows that its human life has been the dreaming of itself through nature, and that the dream began when it hypnotized itself and put itself to sleep, under the spell of the sexes and the senses.
Through its knower, the doer of the Triune Self knows all lives are a dream, made up of many dreams, and each so strong, so fast, so real, as to shut out knowledge of the thinking of the desire that made the dream. Now it establishes the things about which it knew before the unity of its portions was attained. It knows its relation to all other doers. Through its knower it knows its relation to the Great Triune Self of the worlds, to the Intelligence that raised it, and through that it knows about other Intelligences and about the Supreme Intelligence. It knows that that Intelligence is not what human beings project, build up out of themselves and then believe to be the Supreme Intelligence. It links itself up with other doers that are not dreaming, and it is known by them.
The thinker takes being in the life world and is a being of the life world. The thinker and its life body are as one, though human beings would think of them as different. The difference is the difference between the matter of the Triune Self and nature-matter. Matter of the Triune Self cannot be seen by physical sight or by clairvoyance. If it is conceived of from the physical world, it is as a luminous body like an ovoid column, having no limbs or features.
The thinker and his thinking breathe the embryonic form body into being into the form world, and the doer inhabits this body as a being of the form world. In this case the difference between the body and the dweller in it, is more apparent than it is with the being of the life world and the being of the light world. The form of the body of the doer is an ideal human form, and the matter is matter of the physical plane of the form world. It has color; the other two bodies have no color. The color of it is different from any physical color; it might be imagined as the white of a rose, the red of a flame and the light yellow of lightning as one color. If one could see this color mentally, he would recognize a being of the form world by that color, provided the being permitted himself to be seen. No psychic can penetrate into the privacy of these beings. A being of the form world is feeling-and-desire refined and potent to the highest degree.
The perfect body, at the time when the three inner bodies issue, is still physical, but it is so different from the body of the human that that is, without exaggeration, like a deformed and walking corpse by comparison. Though still human in general form, its lines are more perfect than is a conception of divinity. The four brains are made up of currents and coils of light in which are centers for receiving impressions coming from the four worlds and for operating the forces in those worlds. The pituitary and pineal bodies are no longer pudgy or flabby, pea-sized things, but are as large as eyes; the pituitary is highly organized and vital and the pineal is a globe of Light. What was the sternum has become part of the front-column composed of vertebrae similarly articulated as is the spinal column at present; it extends to the pelvis and encloses the front-cord, which reaches from its origin in the brain, by way of what was the esophagus and the bowels, to the coccyx. What were sex organs are entirely within the pelvis; what were the ovaries or the testicles are more like the inner brain and are centers of nerves. The spinal cord, very much larger than with man, extends to the coccyx, and is not nervous matter but currents and coils of Light. The lateral distances between the spinal column and the front-column are spanned by bands or half-arches from either side. The sacrum and coccyx are articulated and flexible and are completed by a similar structure which has been built out from the front-column and the pelvis. The front-cord is united with the spinal cord, through the bridge that was built, so that one central canal runs down in the front-cord and up in the spinal cord. Intervertebral nerves emerge from the spinal cord and corresponding nerves issue from the front-cord; these nerves divide and subdivide and their ramifications mingle with each other. All bones are stronger than steel and unbreakable, but are as flexible as the tongue. There is no alimentary canal; that has become part of the front-cord. There is no blood; that has changed into life currents of a higher power. Respiration does not come through lungs. Air and drink and food come through the cells of the skin, acceptance being regulated by the sense of taste and absorption by the sense of smell; there is no waste. All is done by the coming and the going of the four breaths.
The matter of the body is cellular; few of the cells are bisexual, and the others are sexless. In kind the matter is the same as that in human bodies, but it is superlative in degree. In the human the cells are out of touch with the four states of matter on the physical plane, with the matter of the other three planes of the physical world and with the matter of each of the planes of the form, life and light worlds. But in a physical body from which has issued a body for a being of the light world, the matter is in direct relation with the matter of all these worlds and their planes. Therefore, to give one illustration relating to food, the cells in an ordinary human body have to be fed with gross physical food from which to get the finer matter of the physical world needed for the maintenance of their structure, but when the cells are of a higher power and in direct touch with that finer matter, they take it as they need it directly from the sources. Gross food would be an interference and an encumbrance. The breath units of the cells get their support directly from the fire units of the physical world, the life units from the air units, the form units from the water units, and the cell units from the earth units, all by osmotic processes.
The four senses, of course, belong to nature; they are still its ministers and ambassadors; sight, hearing, taste and smell function; and the breath-form coordinates the senses with the functions of the physical body. They are all carried to the highest degree of development. They are the instruments through which the Triune Self works with nature. The sense of sight can receive impressions from and can be brought to bear upon anything anywhere in nature that has to do with fire and color. So it is with the sense of hearing as to air and sound, with the sense of taste as to water and form, and with the sense of smell as to earth and structure. The senses can work separately or together. The brain that rules them is the brain in the pelvic bowl, though the cephalic, thoracic and abdominal brains cooperate. The senses are ruled from within and not from without.
The aia is then in the body. The breath-form is the medium by which the senses and their systems are operated through the front-cord by the doer. Nature cannot come in as formerly, but only when summoned. The breath-form adapts itself to and is the likeness of the form body; and the physical body is the exteriorized image of the breath-form. The breath-form is directly in touch with matter of the four worlds and so enables its physical body to draw its life and structure directly from them. The body is a part of the four worlds and lives in them and with them. They move through it. Therefore it has everlasting life. Through the breath-form the perfect body becomes related to the form, the life, and the light bodies. The aia of that perfect body will be translated into a Triune Self, after the Triune Self of that body has become an Intelligence and has determined to raise the aia to be the Triune Self of that body.
Copyright 1974 by The Word Foundation, Inc.