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Dane Rudhyar's Fire Out of the Stone. Image Copyright 2007 by Michael R. Meyer.

A Reformulation of the
Basic Images of the
Judeo-Christian Tradition

by Dane Rudhyar, 1962

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This title was first published by Sevire, 1963.

Cover for the online edition copyright © 2008
by Michael R. Meyer.

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"Thy God is a cosumming fire."
Duet. 4:25

"He shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."
Matthew 3:11

"I am come to send fire on the earth."
Luke 12:49

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"I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end."
Rev. 21 : 6

The Creative Process CAN Be Understood

The universe is born out of the divine realization that a change in the state of relationship between unity and multiplicity is needed. The realization of the need produces a desire for action; this desire becomes a thought, as the attention of the One is focused upon the problem of how to act upon the Many. Thought and purpose blend in the imagining of a solution, a plan of action.

This "plan" has essentially one purpose: to bring all the Many into a more integral and more harmonic relationship to the One. It is a plan of integration. To create is, essentially, to integrate many unrelated elements into a condition of unity by means of some kind of form, structure or pattern of relationship.

There is actually no mystery in the process of creation as we, human souls and minds, know it in the world of life on earth. It is a process which does not occur all at once; it has a number of characteristic phases. It is these phases which, as we shall presently see, are symbolized in the Biblical "Seven Days" of Creation.

Creation implies transformation and, above all, a new relationship between a subject (a thinking and imagining individual) and the materials which confront him. However, if we want to think of a divine Creator — a Creator Who cannot be conceived as being absolutely apart from the materials of His Creation if He is truly all-encompassing Unity and timeless Being — the ordinary idea of the Creation seems to break down. It breaks down because the mind finds it difficult to think of the relationship between time and the timelessness of God. In the attempt to avoid the difficulty, the irrational idea of "Creation out of nothing" (ex nihilo) has been stressed and popularized as an easy way out; yet it actually is an intellectual evasion.

That the relationship of God to the universe of matter and souls must be beyond the category of strict human rationality is quite evident; but the kind of irrationality implied in the concept of "Creation out of nothing" has unfortunately far-reaching psychological and spiritual results. It establishes at the very root of all religious conceptions and beliefs a miraculous event or "Mystery"; and this concept is bound to have an immense influence in moulding the minds of men. It fosters a negative attitude in man toward all creative processes. It simply dismisses the subject of creative activity as incomprehensible to man, and as absolutely beyond man's scope of possible activity.

Yet if man is, potentially at least, the image and likeness of God, the Creator-Father, and if the idea of "divine Sonship" is applicable to every "individual soul" that is able to reach the perfection of evolution, it should be obvious that man, as son of the Father, must learn to use the power of the Fatherhood and act creatively as the Father acts — at least at whatever level man can act. Any interpretation of the Creation which makes the creative process essentially incomprehensible and absolutely foreign to man has therefore a negative effect upon the evolution of the soul toward perfection.

Truly, Creation will never be fully understood by men's minds as long as man thinks only in concepts and words conditioned by the realm of multiplicity. But the soul of man is originally and essentially rooted in God's unity; and as the "individual soul", freed from the matter-conditioned structures of the ego, becomes fully repolarized in the process of integration at the level of divine consciousness, it must find itself open to the influx of the "Spirit of truth and understanding", released from the Father through the Son. Thereby it becomes so illumined that it should grasp, at least partially, the meaning and structure of the creative process as it operates everywhere. Indeed Jesus promised his disciples this very illumination, this Pentecostal gift of understanding!

Such an understanding refers to the metaphysical, yet ever-active, relationship between God's timeless unity and the realm of time, change and multiplicity. But again let us not make the error of thinking of such a relationship as one between two factors external to each other. The Many are, as it were, within Unity. They are an implied challenge to its inclusiveness. Creation begins when that which is Unity passes from a state of pure subjectivity to one in which the Many are envisioned as being in need of attention. God thinks of matter and of souls (His potential "sons") as distinct from Him, yet still within Him. A state of polarization begins — "the heaven and the earth" of the first verse of Genesis. Multiplicity polarizes Unity. What is multiple appears as "past", as left-over from the past. But if there is past, there must be future; for in God all is Harmony of opposites. A particular cycle of time begins in the effort to bring the past up to a future condition of integral existence — a condition in which the results of the past will be "redeemed", i.e., transformed and transfigured by a more perfect, more divine consciousness of total Harmony in relatedness.

The future is the ideal goal of integration, the past, that which needs this integration; and the present is God acting "now" toward the realization of the ideal goal. The present is time in its aspect as God's compassion and love in action; it is God's timeless Harmony acting Itself out in the creative moment of time. Indeed God's Creative Act is now.

When we believe that God, the Father, created the universe once and for all in some distant past, we establish by this belief our remoteness from the Fatherhood and our incomprehension of its action. We think of "dead time", that is, of what has failed or is still left unfinished. "Live time" is the Now in which God the Father acts out His Fatherhood; it is the emergence of new solutions made necessary by new problems caused by ever-changing relationships between all forms of existence. Nothing need remain what it has been. For God nothing "has been", because as God's attention is turned toward anything it immediately "is"! As God considers the perfection of his "sons" at the close of a vast cycle, this perfection at once becomes linked in God's awareness with the simultaneous state of failure of many others who might have realized their divine sonship; and at once the call for a new universe sounds within God's infinite potential of endless solutions to endless problems; at once, "now", the new universe begins, at least in potentiality. The divine state is a state of unceasing release of virgin potentialities. The Now is the point of emergence of these creative potentialities; it is the point of pure spontaneity and creativity.

However what has been released must inevitably flow down to "lower" levels of potential and become activity in relation to other forms of activity. It is in this inevitability of relatedness that time and cycles have their being. There must be cycles and we must learn their rhythms and meanings. But that cycles are inevitable is not tragic! Relatedness is the foundation of all existence, and God is the perfect, harmonic relatedness of all. What is tragic is to deny the always possible miracle of Creation; it is to deny the always present possibility of creative change. What has begun must follow its cyclic pattern; but anything might begin, now. "With God all things are possible." To deny this is to deny God. Atheism is another word for inertia.

The Creative Beginning

Any creative act begins a cycle. All life and all history are cyclic; that is, they follow a basic structural pattern of unfoldment, and they serve a "purpose", not in the too literal sense of this term, but in terms of being an answer to a need. The creative act in the Now is an answer to a past, and the unfoldment of this answer is time in the future tense; that is, time reaching toward the fulfillment of what was only potential in the beginning.

In the cycle of vegetation, the past is represented by the humus filled with the products of disintegration; and the future is the new vegetation, the many growing plants needed to give to the chemicalized remains of the past a new chance to experience unity-inaction within a living organism.

How will this new vegetation be produced? Not "out of nothing"! It rises out of the seeds which have survived the death of all things as the cycle ended — the seeds in the ground which have remained intact and integral (thus "immortal") as potential foci for future operations of the life-force of their own vegetable species. In the autumn the life within the many seeds withdraws, as it were, into the vast potentiality of life-characteristics (or qualities) to which we give the name of "species". The Many withdraw into the One. It is during this phase of withdrawal that "mutations" occur. And when the vernal sun summons forth the new life-surge, the "one life" within these same seeds is re-aroused; germination occurs; new vegetation appears in a new cycle.

This creative renewal of cyclic existence is symbolized in the first chapter of Genesis by the term Elohim, which we simply translate as "God". But the word is a plural noun! It could be said to mean "HE-the-gods". It is God in the creative aspect; or rather it represents the emergence of the Fatherhood of God (i.e. El) from the condition of absolute potentiality and unity which we call the Father. The Fatherhood, El, is one power, one stream of creative energy at its source; it is Spirit as a single transforming Will and Purpose. Yet the Fatherhood has to operate in and through a host of creative emanations or rays. Just as the life of a species renews itself in the springtime in one great act of germination, but an act performed by a multitude of seeds, so the Word that is "in the beginning" (John 1:1), though it be one utterance, is yet composed of many letters. The Voice that utters is God's Voice, but the many-lettered Word is Elohim, the Creative Host.

But, one might ask, why should the perfect Company of "divine souls" and "sons of God" at the end of the cycle, of which they constitute the spiritual harvest, return to the world of existence?

The failure to answer this question satisfactorily has weighed heavily upon Asia and especially Southern Buddhism. And yet what could be more simple to understand! The "divine souls" in reaching "perfection" and unity in God must inevitably partake of the infinite love of the Divine. How could they then utterly leave behind those beings who, during the long cycle in which they themselves reached perfection, fell by the wayside or followed the road which inevitably leads to the decay of the "leaves" of the cycle? How could the Compassionate Ones forget even the remains of men who once had been co-existent with them? Perhaps the failures of these men provided at times the very conditions which made possible the success of the Perfect Ones!

Some might say that these "divine souls" must already have worked out all their karma, as the widespread and so often misused phrase goes. But this is only a superficial viewpoint. The Perfect Ones cannot forget, because they have been totally pervaded by the condition of timelessness and all-inclusive unity. God cannot forget, even though, to us who are whirling along the wheels of time, it may seem as if He did forget, then once more, at Creation, He remembered again. Timeless God cannot forget; and He, as the Father, is in the multiune divine company ("seed-harvest" of cyclic time) as well as the very core of the creative activity of Elohim, source of the new creative stream of time-existence. Thus there can be no forgetting for the "divine soul" — and no being forgotten either.

Because God "remembers" in timeless all-inclusiveness, the "divine soul" that reaches perfection at the end of its cycle cannot merge into "non-existence" — which would mean being forgotten by God! Even if it experiences a period of "wintry" latency and "refreshment" in the vast ocean of potentiality — the ocean of spirit, the Virgin of all worlds — the "divine soul" is called back, as it were, by its ancient Name and the re-arousal of its soul-memory, as "once more" God's attention turns toward that which cyclic time has left unfulfilled — the "unfinished business" of the past.

It is this "turn of attention" which, in the vast world-cycle, is time's re-beginning. God sees Himself as His "sons", we might say. As this occurs one can no longer speak of Unity, pure and simple. Within God, Elohim, HE-the Gods, has re-emerged; multiplicity is now active and the cosmic Seed is stirring with the power of germination. Then as Elohim, having surveyed in spirit the field of the future Creation (the dark waters of "the earth"; Genesis 1:2), becomes aware of the problems posed by chaos, God releases the active power of relatedness which is the substance-energy of divine Love-Charity — which is "Light".

In this Light the solution of the problem of chaos is inherent. And this Light is the soul of "imagination". Light dissolves darkness — as soul-consciousness resolves the problems which have their roots in "the deep" of unconsciousness, the psychological "humus" made of the disintegrating results of past failures. Likewise, true creative imagination resolves the inertia of the past and impregnates the Now with a vision of the future — with a purpose and a plan.

Indeed, the primary aspect of divine Fatherhood is creative imagination — the power to envision a solution to any need, plus the ability to plan effectively for the realization of the results which have been visualized in mind. Creative imagination is the power of Elohim. It blends with the Light which streams forth from the central principle of relatedness in God's essential being — the "Heart of God" — and these two forces in absolute union start the creative process in operation.

This edition copyright © 2008 by Michael R. Meyer
All Rights Reserved.

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