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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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9. CHRIST-LOVE - page 5

The Covenant with Individuals

"To the weak became I as weak that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some."
I Corinthians 9 : 22

The climax of the "coming-together" process is the Transfiguration. Here the state and glory of divine Sonship become fully manifest, and as it is thus fulfilled it integrates not only the Divine and the human, Christ and Jesus, but the past and the future of the religious-cultural cycle of which Jesus is the seed-end at the very point when this end becomes the seed-beginning of the new cycle or "dispensation". The PAST of the collective racial-cultural Hebraic cycle is represented by its two foremost and polar representatives: Moses the Law-giver, who talked to the Father-God face to face as friend sees friend, and Elijah the Prophet, who experienced the Divine in the whirlwind and was taken up to God in a chariot of fire. The FUTURE (i.e., the germinating energies of the cycle about to begin) is represented by the three main disciples of Jesus — Peter, John and James.

Some students of theosophical doctrines will no doubt see in the protagonists of the ritual on the Mount of Transfiguration a symbolic reference to the seven-fold nature of man. Jesus, Moses and Elijah constitute the higher Trinity, the Soul, while John, Peter and James represent the lower manifestation of the higher realities: John polarizes Jesus, Peter polarizes Moses, James polarizes Elijah. The Voice of God is the seventh Actor in the ritual — but not an Actor really; instead it is Activity, a universal Principle which can never be personified, though it is impersonated in a threefold Presence during the cycle as: Love, Form and Consciousness (Jesus, Moses and Elijah — and John, Peter and James). This "God" may be considered as the Elohim in a collective sense (for "Elohim", I repeat, is a plural noun in Hebrew) and must not be confused with "Jehovah" (the JHVH-Elohim of Genesis 2) who is only the Father-manager of the realm of "life" and from whom man receives only his "living soul".

It is interesting to note that John and James, the two sons of Zebedee, may have been close cousins of Jesus (their mother being perhaps the sister of Mary); and that Jesus called them "sons of thunder" — which evokes in the mind the name of the great Aryan deity, Rudra, the Thunderous. James apparently was the first of the Apostles to experience death. On the other hand it was Peter who, by his statement of recognition of the divine Sonship of Jesus, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God," polarized the Transfiguration; for before the potential "Sonship" of Jesus could become a completely actualized fact one still merely-human individual had to realize this potentiality as a fact. Jesus' divine Sonship could only be made complete and perfect by being anchored, as it were, in the mind of a man who "saw" it and proclaimed it; a man who had enough "faith" to see and proclaim. And yet this man was to deny him thrice in the hour of darkness!

The validity of all this rests upon the fact that in such spiritual events as the Transfiguration what is involved is not merely that an individual fulfills his own evolution. To believe that this is the case is a naive egocentric illusion. In every transfigured NOW the past and the future are implied — a cycle comes to an end, another begins. The "past" announces the coming process — Jesus is told by Moses and Elijah of his death in Jerusalem (Luke 9 : 31) — while the "future" (the Apostles yet to be) directly hear, for the first time, the Voice of God: "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. Hear ye him!" They experience the power of the universal Fatherhood.

Alas, the three disciples' experience at the Transfiguration is a sad but expectable comment on humanity's spiritual unpreparedness. They are "heavy with sleep" — as they shall also be on the Mount of Olives. They "enter into a cloud" — that is, they can hardly bear the light, and their consciousness is clouded. Peter's reaction to the great vision is typical of the "Old" religious attitude; he wants "to make three tabernacles" — and the whole pattern of the Catholic Church's worship is there announced in seed: huge edifices, altars and statues, pompous ceremonies!

Thus Jesus is told by "the past" of his cycle that he must experience death in Jerusalem, and "the future" reacts to the Supreme Moment of human evolution in a manner that is barely distinct from that of the religious tradition which, in that very moment, was being made obsolete. Jesus must be crucified according to the tradition of physical violence and torture because the whole momentum of the past evolution of the human Soul has been deviated and perverted by the "ghosts" which linger in man's subconscious — the ghostly memories of guilt rooted in the fear of Adam-Eve when confronted with the knowledge of good and evil, the anger of Cain whose brother was preferred to him, the lust of the descendants of the "sons of God" who married the "daughters of men". Fear, anger and lust are the three "gates of hell"; and it is in order to dissolve these three gates that the Christ, focused in the mind of Jesus, will have to descend into hell "for three days".

This descent starts a process of all-human catharsis; and indeed the historical era which is now coming to a close and which we call "Christian" has been a long period of catharsis, of conflicts and of wars, of fear and hypocrisy. But so it must happen when the ghosts of the deviated and tortured past rise to the surface of man's consciousness. In psychoanalysis one speaks of the transference of the patient's Father-Image to the analyst; and so our civilization has seen the enthronement of this Father-Image in the head of a Church, or in "the Book" literally accepted as the Word of God. Yet all that Jesus taught was that Heaven is within us, that the Kingdom is within the heart, and that the Father is the universal Principle and the Power that reside potentially in every man. They reside at the center of the Cross — yes, the cross of man's body — where can be made to bloom the celestial Rose. But this Rose can. only be beheld by those who have dared journey through all circles of hell and, having assimilated the experiences of the darkness, can receive in silence and in peace, in self-surrender and in love, the perfect seed, the God-seed, growing slowly in the heart of the Rose.

The Crucifixion is the inevitable sequence to the Transfiguration in view of the human and social background against which this Transfiguration takes place. The ritual-drama of the Passion unfolds in a mode of human incomprehension or frightened betrayal, and of divine sacrifice. Death is made sacred in a divine-human sense, because it is consciously accepted and it does not occur in vain, as most deaths do. To suffer and to die is not tragic if you know why you suffer and die. As the Gnostic saying attributed to Jesus has it: "If you would know how to suffer, you would have power not to suffer" — that is, not to suffer in the meaningless way in which most sufferings are experienced amidst fear, remorse and blind rebellion by men tortured by despair and a gnawing sense of frustration, futility and bitter defeat.

There have been, of course, innumerable human sacrifices in the tragic history of what we like to call "civilization". But in the Christ-life drama sacrifice is given, perhaps for the first time publicly and clearly, both a cosmic and human meaning — above all a universalistic meaning. Countless virgins have been sacrificed in older cults to insure earth fertility and abundant crops; the first fruits of the ground and the first-born have been sacrificed to the gods. But the object of the sacrificial rite was always to produce a particular, and most of all a local, result. The Crucifixion, by contrast, has significance as a universal symbol. It has meaning in terms of the whole process of soul evolution.

We might like to say, with the Fundamentalists, that "the blood of Christ redeemed the sins of man"; but having said that you have only pronounced emotion-laden words. What do these words actually mean in terms of the universal process which the Bible symbolically outlines — the evolution of the soul? The phrase "redemption by suffering" has echoed back and forth through the vaults and chambers of Western man's tortuous mind; but it is only today perhaps, with the help of depth-psychology, that we can really begin to understand with a clear and conscious mind what this phrase actually means, and to what it precisely refers.

What is to be "redeemed" is the memory of our (and collective man's) transgressions and perversions — the ghosts whose roots are fear, anger and lust. They are the festering sores, the poisoned areas in our subconscious and in the collective unconscious of mankind. And this redemption of the past is the healing of the present. We can, with the power of spirit and understanding and with the knowledge our mind gives us, heal the sickness of today; but the sickness of today is, very often indeed — and possibly always — the secondary result of the "sin" or the fear (both words mean much the same!) of our ancient past — personal and collective. And the primary result is hidden in our unconscious, in our personal circles of hell. How will it be made to "come out" of the grave of unconsciousness if not at the command of a "Christed" individual who "loves greatly" and is willing, able and ready to suffer greatly that the aroused "powers of hell" may be absorbed, assimilated and released as vital energies in the universal circulation of "life"?

The techniques of psychiatry, excellent as they may be in some cases, are no substitute for "Christed" healers and redeemers. Diseases may be cured, but can memories ever be totally redeemed and released in the resurrected consciousness as soul-transforming understanding and mind-illuminating love — unless a "redeemer" comes? And this which is true for the individual person is also true for a whole civilization, a whole historical cycle.

It all begins with the Annunciation to Mary; for the mind of man must consciously accept the possibility of redemption and healing before this potentiality can be made actuality. There must be a focused descent of the creative spirit in an "individual soul" whose power of creative imagination is forever fresh, virginal, untainted by conformism, tradition and fear. There must be a baptism by the water of that wisdom which the past transfers, in its creative essence, to the future. There must be a testing of the quality of the inner sense of individual selfhood, of the ever-lurking possibility of ambition, pride and mental confusion in the ego of every man invested with unusual powers. There must come association with all manner of human beings, with men and with women, with new groups and old entrenched social-religious privileges. And the way is strewn with "miracles", for he whose imagination is free and spirit-pervaded performs miracles of transformation, small or spectacular, but always real in terms of the soul-evolution of those touched by the flow of that love which is the free and imaginative fulfillment of relationships.

But he who fulfills relationship in the spirit of Christ-love must accept the crisis of redemption. It is not enough for a Christed individual to utter words of healing or to make the sick whole by touch. Redemption means crisis accepted and gone through. There are many crises, and indeed many crucifixions, in the life of the redeeming individual through whom the Divine may pour grace in moments of great intensity pervaded with humility and with love. Yet, though this Christ-love, as it consumes the hearts of the dedicated, is crucifixion, it is also joy and resurrection. And the song of Easter resounds through the works of those whose love has "known how to suffer" and, thus knowing, reach at the very core of suffering that peace and that sense of the beautiful and the true which is the eternal resurrection.

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

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