“Where am I?…How did I get here?” is more than a trite line from nineteenth century melodramas and novels. It is a query put forth by potential sages throughout the history of conscious mankind.
When asked on a cosmic scale, it is bold indeed: What is this universe I keep finding myself in, and how did I get here? That is answered by esoteric Christian cosmology.
In Robe of Light: An Esoteric Christian Cosmology Abbot George Burke explores the whys and wherefores of the mystery of creation. From the emanation of the worlds from the very Being of God, to the evolution of the souls to their ultimate destiny as perfected Sons of God, the ideal progression of creation is described. Since the rebellion of Lucifer and the fall of Adam and Eve from Paradise flawed the normal plan of evolution, a restoration was necessary. How this came about is the prime subject of this insightful study.
Moreover, what this means to aspirants for spiritual perfection is expounded, with a compelling knowledge of the scriptures and of the mystical traditions of East and West.
“An amazing, clear and direct cosmology and explanation of creation through Christ. It’s like the pieces were all there in front of me, waiting for me to put them together. Such an inspiring vision of our potential to reach God, and a beautiful and logical explanation of how it happened to the first soul able to do that.”
Excerpts from Robe of Light: An Esoteric Christian Cosmology
To enable the spirits to enter into this process [our return to God], God breathes forth–emanates–His own Self as the Son and the Holy Spirit and manifests all the realms of relative existence, from the most subtle worlds of the Cherubim and Seraphim to the most objective worlds of atomic matter.
The spirits then enter into relative existence by taking on bodies of varying grades and patterns of vibratory energies and descending into this material world to begin working their way back up the ladder of ever-evolving forms, beginning with forms whose scope of consciousness is much lesser than theirs and working their way upward, entering into higher and higher levels of awareness until they can surpass their original breadth of consciousness and begin to partake of a life of awareness much beyond their own.
Upward and upward they evolve until their capacity for awareness is developed to such a perfect state that they can actually experience the state of being of the Son and the Holy Spirit. Then, after having perfected themselves in even that empyrean state, they can actually reenter the Bosom of the Father in full participation of His all-embracing consciousness, thenceforth to live in His infinity, His ultimate gift of love to them, thus experiencing the meaning of His ancient declaration: “I am…thy exceeding great reward” (Genesis 15:1).
The divine plan
“The world is mine, and the fulness thereof” (Psalms 50:12) is an unchangeable dictum. All things remain ever in the hand of God, whatever the appearances may be. This is why Saint Paul could say with confidence: “We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). Lucifer may have had long-range plans, but so did God.
He revealed this plan at the very beginning when saying to Lucifer: “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Genesis 3:15).
The Latin Vulgate, one of the most ancient texts, and one that reflects the mind of the early church, gives this reading: “I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed; she shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel.”
What does it mean? That God cannot be thwarted. The prime law of the universe is the law of evolution, the law of the inevitable flight of the spirit back to divinity. Lucifer may have grievously delayed that homeward flight, but never could he permanently stop it. For God has another basic law in His universe:
“Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting” (Galatians 6:7, 8).
What we do in the flesh we shall reap in the flesh–either in this present body or in a future body created for us by the forces we have set in motion by our previous deeds and desires. Today we reap the fruits of yesterday and sow the seeds of tomorrow.
What the story in Robe of Light means to us
The true Gospel–Good News–of Christ is the knowledge that we can all ascend to God, as he confirms in Revelation 3:21: “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.”
Here again we see the clear demonstration that the Lord Jesus himself journeyed on the path that we, too, now tread; that his attainment is our hope. This is why he said to Saint Mary Magdalene: “Go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God” (John 20:17). We see this further in Psalm 110:1: “The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand,….” In Luke 20:42, Jesus applies this to himself, and Saint Peter applies it to him in Acts 2:34, having previously stated that Jesus had been “by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost…” (Acts 2:33).
Saint Peter also says later on in Acts: “Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Savior” (Acts 5:31). The author of the book of Hebrews (1:13) also applies the above Psalm verse to Jesus. He further applies to Jesus the verse from II Samuel: “I will be his father, and he shall be my son” (II Sam. 7:14). The implications are obvious. Does this mean that Jesus is not God? No. It means that Jesus absolutely is God, but like all of us he had to ascend to that status. His case is unique in that he (and the Virgin) had to turn back from the final Union and descend to earth to repair the damage they had done in previous ages.
Even now you and I are divine sons of God, potentially. This is why Saint John wrote: “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure” (I John 3:2,3).
In this passage Saint John outlines several amazing spiritual facts:
- we are ourselves already–eternally–sons of God;
- we yet have to attain to a full revelation and taking on of that status which
- is to be the same as that of Christ Jesus; to which end we must
- purify ourselves, attaining a purity identical with his.