The war crippled and eventually resulted in the near-annihilation of the human species and left their civilization in ruins throughout the Land of Ooo.
And with us, those were the common elements of science which the sages of to-day disdain as wild chimeras, or despair of as unfathomable mysteries. It is the only original copy now in existence. The most ancient Hebrew document on occult learning--the Siphra Dzeniouta--was compiled from it, and that at a time when the former was already considered in the light of a literary relic.
As it approaches nearer and nearer to our planet, the Emanation becomes more and more shadowy, until upon touching the ground it is as black as night. But since that time matter has become the formidable barrier between us and the world of spirits.
The oldest esoteric traditions also teach that, before the mystic Adam, many races of human beings lived and died out, each giving place in its turn to another.
Were these precedent types more perfect? Did any of them belong to the winged race of men mentioned by Plato in Phaedrus? It is the special province of science to solve the problem.
The caves of France and the relics of the stone age afford a point at which to begin. As the cycle proceeded, man's eyes were more and more opened, until he came to know "good and evil" as well as the Elohim themselves.
Having reached its summit, the cycle began to go downward. When the arc attained a certain point which brought it parallel with the fixed line of our terrestrial plane, the man was furnished by nature with "coats of skin," and the Lord God "clothed them.
In the ancient Quiche manuscript, published by Brasseur de Bourbourg--the Popol Vuh--the first men are mentioned as a race that could reason and speak, whose sight was unlimited, and who knew all things at once.
According to Philo Judaeus, the air is filled with an invisible host of spirits, some of whom are free from evil and immortal, and others are pernicious and mortal.
Plato describes admirably in Phaedrus the state in which man once was, and what he will become again: From one of these evolved, in the course of time, ADAM, the primitive man.
The Kalmucks and some tribes of Siberia also describe in their legends earlier creations than our present race. These beings, they say, were possessed of almost boundless knowledge, and in their audacity even threatened rebellion against the Great Chief Spirit.
To punish their presumption and humble them, he imprisoned them in bodies, and p. From these they can escape but through long repentance, self-purification, and development.
Their Shamans, they think, occasionally enjoy the divine powers originally possessed by all human beings. The original is written upon the inner bark of Cyperus papyrus, and has been pronounced by Professor Schenk, of Leipsig, not only genuine, but also the most perfect ever seen.
It consists of a single sheet of yellow-brown papyrus of finest quality, three-tenths of a metre wide, more than twenty metres long, and forming one roll divided into one hundred and ten pages, all carefully numbered. It was purchased in Egypt, inby the archaeologist Ebers, of "a well-to-do Arab from Luxor.
The papyrus "bears internal evidence of being one of the six Hermetic Books on Medicine, named by Clement of Alexandria. Of these, according to that author, thirty-six contained the history of all human knowledge; the last six treated of anatomy, of pathology, of affections of the eye, instruments of surgery, and of medicines.
The discoveries of modern science do not disagree with the oldest traditions which claim an incredible antiquity for our race. Within the last few years geology, which previously had only conceded that man could be traced as far back as the tertiary period, has found unanswerable proofs that human existence antedates the last glaciation of Europe--overyears!
A hard nut, this, for Patristic Theology to crack; but an accepted fact with the ancient philosophers. But the forward step has not yet been taken in this search for the origin of the race; science comes to a dead stop, and waits for future proofs. Unfortunately, anthropology and psychology possess no Cuvier; neither geologists nor archaeologists are able to construct, from the fragmentary bits hitherto discovered, the perfect skeleton of the triple man--physical, intellectual, and spiritual.
Because the fossil implements of man are found to become more rough and uncouth as geology penetrates deeper into the bowels of the earth, it seems a proof to science that the closer we come to the origin of man, the more savage and brute-like he must be.
Does the finding of the remains in the cave of Devon prove that there were no contemporary races then who were highly civilized? When the present population of the earth have disappeared, and some archaeologist belonging to the "coming race" of the distant future shall excavate the domestic implements of one of our Indian or Andaman Island tribes, will he be justified in concluding that mankind in the nineteenth century was "just emerging from the Stone Age"?
It has lately been the fashion to speak of "the untenable conceptions of an uncultivated past. Just as Tyndall is ever ready to disparage ancient philosophers--for a dressing-up of whose ideas more than one distinguished scientist has derived honor and credit--so the geologists seem more and more inclined to take for granted that all of the archaic races were contemporaneously in a state of dense barbarism.
But not all of our best authorities agree in this opinion. Some of the most eminent maintain exactly the reverse. Max Muller, for instance, says: Yet more and more the image of man, in whatever clime we meet him, rises before us, noble and pure from the very beginning; even his errors we learn to understand, even his dreams we begin to interpret.
As far as we can trace back the footsteps of man, even on the lowest strata of history, we see the divine gift of a sound and sober intellect belonging to him from the very first, and the idea of a humanity emerging slowly from the depths of an animal brutality can never be maintained again.
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It’s also a funny question and I am never quite sure how to answer it.
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