We will now consider the making and evolution of the Universe–of all existing things, all creation. No one can very well deny that the Universe exists, because we can perceive a considerable portion of it with our five senses. But we must remember that there is much more in the Universe than that which we can see and hear and touch. We know from the teaching of science that sight and sound are just the impact of vibrations on the retina of the eye or the drum of the ear. It is the same with the organs of the other senses–taste and touch and scent. We can perceive objects outside ourselves by means of our senses, if their rate of vibration is not above or below certain rates of vibration. Anything that vibrates at a higher or lower rate than that is imperceptible by us. We cannot see it or hear or taste or feel or smell it, but it does exist, nevertheless.
It is obvious that there must be much more in the Universe than that which we now perceive, much that we do not perceive only because our senses cannot experience their rates of vibration and we have not yet developed any other senses or organs of sense than those five. Some few people have developed two other organs of sense–namely, the pineal gland and the pituitary body in the head–and such people are what we call clairvoyants and clairaudients. They see and hear very much more than other people see and hear, and it is largely because of their clairvoyant investigations and research work that we know as much as we do about the universe and what is in it, and how it came into existence.
You may remember the lines in Hamlet: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” That is very true, and an inquiry into the nature and the conditions of those “more things” forms a very interesting and fascinating study, to which we shall return later when we come to consider the subject of angels and other invisible beings and things. Just now, however, we must try to understand how and why God has created, or is still creating, the Universe, for we must now assume that it is the work of God, though that cannot be proved.
The Universe is certainly the work of some one, and if God is not the Creator of it, then the Universe is its own creator, and we may as well call the Universe itself God. But it is better and truer to suppose that the Creator is greater even than the Universe, and that the Absolute Being is the Creator, and that He or It never did not exist, whereas the Universe had a beginning in time.
How It Happened
It is difficult to understand the method of creation, because the Universe is so vast; but it will not be amiss to recount what we do know from both the physical and the esoteric sciences.
The material of which the universe is made is ultimately that which scientists call the “ether of space.” When this began to be or how the Absolute produced it we cannot possibly tell, but we may conclude that He produced it somehow from Himself. We do, however, know something about its nature and its properties, thanks to the researches of scientists. Its density, we are told, is 10,000 times greater than that of water, and its mean pressure is 750,000 tons to the square inch. We must assume (for we cannot know) that at some time before the universe began to exist some great Being poured His spirit or breath or force into all or part of this ether of space, and so made it throb with life. The effect of this breathing is that an uncountable number of “bubbles” was formed within this ether. The atoms which our chemists speak of are formed of vast aggregations of these bubbles. This is the material which God finds ready to His hand when He begins to make a Universe.
We must imagine, then, that God first marks out the sphere in space in which he is going to make or create an evolving Solar System. We cannot tell in detail how He marked it out, but plainly the Solar System occupies a certain definite space, so we may conclude that that space has somehow been marked out. We may perhaps conceive of God as in some way, which in its details is beyond our understanding, holding back by His mighty power the stupendous pressure of the ether of space, and so preparing the sphere which is to be occupied by a Solar System, appropriating for His purpose just that quantity of material (atoms) that He will need. He is Himself within this sphere, and at the same time far beyond it. The sphere consists of many more dimensions than the three with which we are familiar, namely, length, breadth, and thickness. If we can imagine more dimensions than those three, well and good; we are that much nearer to the truth. If not, we must be content to imagine the space or sphere occupied by the universe in only three dimensions.
Within this sphere He sets up a tremendous vortex–a whirling motion which sweeps all the bubbles into a vast central mass, which is the nebula from which the Solar System slowly evolves. Into this revolving vortex He sends forth a succession of impulses, seven impulses one after the other, the result of which is that the bubbles are gathered together into more and more complex aggregations, the densest, namely, the physical atom, consisting of an aggregation of 14,000 millions of these bubbles. This pouring forth of power is the work of the third Aspect of God, usually described as the Third Person of the Trinity, or God the Holy Spirit (Mother). She is the energy or power of God at work in creation, or one aspect of that power. In the course of ages She thus produced in the sphere which is the Solar System matter in seven degrees of density, the finer penetrating and transcending the denser matter. (Although we are using the term “matter” in the following exposition, we should keep in mind that the word “energy” would be just as appropriate.)
Forms Of The Creative Energy-Matter
The seventh or densest form of matter is that which we call physical matter. We know it in three forms–the solid, the liquid, and the gaseous; and there are four other forms of it, subtler or finer than the gaseous, with which we are not familiar, because it is too fine or rarefied for us to perceive. Physical matter is thus itself found in seven degrees of density, and similarly the other six forms or states of matter, which we shall consider, all consist of seven sub-states or sub-conditions of the same matter; but we shall not stop to consider the sub-states, but only the main state or form in each case. There are thus forty-nine states or conditions of matter in the universe, namely, seven main conditions, of which physical matter is the seventh, and each of those seven consists of seven sub-conditions: the densest of all is physical matter in the solid condition, such as the matter of which stones are made; and the subtlest or finest is so fine, so spiritual, that no human beings can have any notion of what it is like. We know about it because we have been told of it by those of perfect enlightenment, and because it seems so reasonable and intelligible.
The sixth may be called the matter of the emotions or feelings, sometimes described as astral matter. The fifth is the matter of the thoughts, which may be called mental matter; the three highest sub-conditions of this form consist of matter in the condition in which the higher thoughts work, such as philosophical thought, and the four lowest sub-conditions are the conditions of a lower and more concrete type of thought. The fourth is intuitional matter, that is to say, the matter in which that intuition works, which was mentioned in the previous chapter. When we know something quite clearly without using our brains and reasoning powers, we know it because our intuitions see right into it. In the case of a person, we see right into that person’s thoughts and feelings and know them as we know our own. The third is spiritual matter, and so are the second and the first; but we have so little experience of these three at present that we cannot understand them very well. When we are further evolved and more spiritual than most of us are now we shall understand them better.
The Seven Planes Of Nature
These degrees of density in the matter of the universe are generally described as the seven planes of nature. They fill the Solar System, which is thus a much more splendidly arranged entity than we should imagine if we thought of it as consisting only of the suns and planets. We see these bodies because they are composed of dense physical matter; but they are not entirely separate from each other; they are connected by matter of the finer degrees, which we cannot see, but without which we should not be able to see anything at all beyond the earth’s atmosphere. If there was just nothingness outside the earth’s atmosphere there would be no material along which the light waves and heat waves could vibrate, and so no impression of sun, moon, and stars could ever reach us, not even the heat of the sun.
It is so important for our purpose to have as clear an idea as we can of these seven planes that a table will help us, especially for future reference when considering other subjects. But it must be remembered that the higher planes penetrate the lower; they are not in nature arranged one above the other as they are on paper. They are:
In passing it will be interesting to notice that we human beings exist in all these planes, and that we have coverings or vehicles on each plane composed of the matter of that plane. The physical body is that which we usually call the “body”–the body with head and arms and legs that we know so well. But that is not our only body; we have six others in addition, but the others are made of matter which we cannot see or feel, and, therefore, we do not pay much attention to them or even, as a rule, know of their existence. But they are there, and when we die we lose the physical body, but we continue to live in the other six bodies, which means that we really do not die at all.
The Work Of The Holy Spirit In Creation
The arrangement of the matter of the System in these seven degrees or planes is the work of God the Holy Spirit. It is Her creative activity. If She were for a moment to desist from that activity everything would at once cease to be; there would be nothing in the Solar System but the ether of space and God; it would be just as it was in the beginning, a condition which is picturesquely described in the Bible thus: “Darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters” (Genesis 1:2). The ether of space is like a heaving mass of water until the Spirit of God moves upon it and organizes it. But even that ether of space and everything that is made from it is God. There is nothing but God anywhere in the universe, and yet God the Absolute must be supposed to stretch even beyond the limits of the universe. God the Absolute is limitless.
Out beyond the shining
Of the furthest star
Thou art ever stretching
Thus it seems that God, by means of the Holy Spirit, the Creator Spirit, is continually at work upon the material of the System, which is itself part of God. He is continually manufacturing, so to speak, fresh chemical elements by means of which creation becomes more and more wonderful. The Holy Spirit is sometimes described as the arm or hand of God because She is God in action, and this activity is the process of material evolution. The characteristic of the Holy Spirit is thus seen to be boundless energy, yet not blind mechanical energy. It is energy combined with dignity and intelligence. It is the energy that proceeds not from a machine, but from a living Person–for the Holy Spirit is a Divine Person. Yet such a Person as no human being is or can be so long as he is just a human being.