41. Departed This Life

A disembodied human spirit is standing apart and perplexed in the chamber of death. On looking around it is sorely troubled to see its body lying on its death-bed. The man who is lying there, when alive, refused to believe in the continuity of life after the death of the physical body. It was a subject he had never seriously considered, and he had laughed at those who did so. Now he sees people he knew, standing weeping round his dead body; he hears what they are saying and feels the sorrow expressed in their regrets at his death. He would like to laugh and call out that he is alive. He does it, but to his surprise they do not hear him. He does it — again and again, louder and louder, but the mourners go on lamenting; they do not listen to him. An eerie feeling comes over him, and he begins to be frightened, for he hears his own voice quite loud and he distinctly feels his body. Again he calls out in anguish, but nobody pays attention to him. They go on weeping and gazing at that lifeless body, which he recognises as having been his own, but which now seems something strange that does not belong to him, for is he not standing next to it, free from the pain that he up till now suffered?

Now he calls his loved wife by name, she who is kneeling at his bedside; but she weeps on, nor does she show by word or by sign that she has heard him. He steps up to her in desperation and vigorously shakes her shoulder, but she takes no notice.

He does not know that he is but touching her ethereal body, invisible and intangible to the senses of the physical body. Neither he nor his wife ever thought that there existed anything beyond the physical body, so she is quite insensible to his touch.

A horrible dread seizes him and makes him shudder. He feels utterly forsaken and forlorn, and weakness overcoming him, he loses consciousness.

The sound of a voice that he knows gradually wakes him, and now he sees his body lying embedded in flowers. He would fly away, but he finds it impossible to sever himself from this still, cold body. He distinctly feels he is bound to it. Then he again hears the voice speaking, that aroused him from his slumber. It is one of his friends speaking to another. They have each brought a wreath and are talking together while laying them down. No one else is in the room. His friend! He wishes to attract his attention and that of the other too, who was often a welcome guest at his house. He must tell them that, extraordinary as it may sound, he is still alive, that he can hear them speaking, and he calls out to his friend, but the latter, turning to his companion goes on speaking. And what does he hear? He is thunder- struck.
That, his friend! That is how he speaks of him! He is petrified at what they say — his genial and convivial table-companions! As long as they sat at his festive board and went in and out of his hospitable house, their words were honeyed.

These left and others came. How clearly he could see into their thoughts and hearts. So many that he had highly valued now filled him with disgust and anger, and others that he had passed over unnoticed made him feel he would like to press their hands gratefully. He shrieked and raved to prove to them that he was still alive, but they neither heard him nor felt him.

In a solemn procession, the body was conveyed to the grave, and he sat cross-legged on the coffin. Embittered and desperate though he was, he could but laugh, laugh! But his laughter soon gave way to hopeless despair — he felt terribly lonely, and again, utterly exhausted, he fell asleep. When he awoke, darkness surrounded him. How long he had been sleeping, he could not tell, but he felt that he was no longer tied to his physical body — he was free, free, but in a strange and oppressive darkness. He called out, but no sound came. He could not hear his own voice. He groaned and sank back helpless, and in so doing struck his head against a sharp stone. When after a long time, he awoke, he still was in the same gruesome darkness, and in the same sinister silence. He wanted to jump up, but his limbs were as heavy as lead. Trembling with fear, he made a desperate effort to rise, summoning all his strength to his aid. When he was on his feet, he staggered to and fro, then forwards, groping his way. He often stumbled, fell and bruised himself badly against sharp corners and edges; still he pressed on unheeding, driven by a strong impulse within him to investigate further. He was
seeking, but what was he seeking? Onward, onward, he went till he again broke down.

Then again he pulled himself together and continued his wanderings. Years went by — decade after decade passed. At last tears came into his eyes and sobs shook his breast — then a thought took shape in him — it was a prayer, the outcry of a tired soul yearning for an end to this condition of ceaseless misery. The outcry of despair and hopeless suffering! But — it impelled him for the first time to think consecutively. His ardent wish to get away made him ask what had brought him into this terrible plight, what was it that was so cruelly forcing him to wander in darkness? He stretched forth his hand and felt nothing but stark rocks! Was this the earth, or perhaps the other world, in the existence of which he had not believed? The other world? Then he was physically dead and yet alive. Was he alive? He found thinking the greatest effort. Stumbling on, he sought further and again years passed. If he could but find a way out of the darkness! His ardent wish became a craving and his craving turned to longing. Longing is the purer spiritual sensation and gradually, and quite diffidently he began to pray. It was as if a clear spring were bubbling up within him bringing peace, humility and resignation, and then, when he arose to continue his wandering, what joy coursed through his body — what relief! Darkness had given way to twilight, and he could suddenly see. In the distance — a long way off — he saw a light, like a torch that greeted him. Jubilant, he stretched forth his arms to it and sank down, his heart overflowing with gratitude, and offered up thanks to Him who had granted him Light! With new-born strength he stepped out towards it. It did not come nearer to him, but taught by what he had gone through, he hoped to reach it at last, even if it should take centuries.

What had now happened, might happen again, and help come, which would lead him out of this stony desert into a warmer sunnier land, if he humbly and earnestly prayed for it.

His heart was deeply moved with gratitude and hope, and he uttered the words: "My God, help me in this", and, what untold joy, he could hear his own voice once more; it was a weak voice but still he heard it! He felt happy, and it gave him new strength, and again he went forward.

This is an example of the first experiences of a soul in the invisible world. This soul had not been a bad man on earth; he was accounted very good. He was a merchant-prince, very hardworking and honestly anxious to observe all mundane laws.

Now to explain this case, be it known that a man who rejects the idea of continuity of life after physical death and who does not believe that he will sometime have to answer for all he did and for all he left undone, will be blind and deaf to all phenomena in ethereal substance when he gets into the other world. It is only during the short span of time, it may be days, it may be weeks, that his ethereal body has not fully detached itself from his physical body, that he may be partly aware of what is going on around him.

When he is free from disintegrating matter, this possibility no longer exists for him. He no longer sees anything, neither does he hear anything. This is not punishment but a natural result. While he was in his physical body, he would neither hear nor see anything of ethereal substance. When he has gone over, a man's will power can quickly adapt the senses belonging to the ethereal substance with which he is clothed, to the ethereal substance that surrounds him. This man prevented himself from seeing or hearing anything, for he
refused to believe in ethereal substance. The condition such a man is then in, lasts until a change gradually takes place and this may not be for years, for decades, or for centuries. It is each individual's own concern; he has his free will untrammelled. Neither will help come to him from outside, till he longs earnestly for it. He is under no constraint whatever.

The Light that this man saw and greeted with such delight, was always there, only he could not see it. Neither could he at first see it in all its clearness and brilliance. Whether a soul sees a strong or a feeble Light, is again its own concern, depending entirely on its condition at the time. The Light does not approach, but it is there, and every soul, that is desirous of enjoying it, can do so at any time.

What I am saying here concerns the one species of souls only. In the dark regions there is no light at all, and so it cannot happen that a developing soul suddenly comes face to face with it. The soul must first be led out of surroundings that retain it.

The condition we have been investigating is surely terrible, especially because of the agony of fear and hopelessness suffered; but this soul would have it so and only got what it insisted on. It had refused all knowledge of a continuance of life. The soul, however, cannot put an end to life; it can only turn it into a barren waste, suppressing and deadening its senses, so that it can neither see nor hear ethereal substance. This state lasts till he seeks enlightenment, and this is what happens to millions of souls on earth. They are upright and honourable, but they refuse to believe in eternity or in God.

The fate of the wicked is much more deplorable, but of them I shall not speak here. I have only depicted so-called respectable people.

When it is said: God will stretch out his hand to help man, the
help meant here, is the Word that He has sent him, for in the Word man will find how he can get rid of the sin in which he has entangled himself. His mercy He has already shown in all the great possibilities that are at man's disposal in Creation. The possibilities are greater and more numerous than man of the present day can conceive. He has never seriously turned his attention to these and when he has investigated, it has been but a pastime and for the purpose of self-aggrandisement. As soon as the human spirit recognises the true value of God's Word and perceives its deep meaning, he will achieve great things in Creation.

Up till now, men have given preference to their own knowledge which consequently remained stagnant — piecework of the lowest quality in comparison to the fulness of wisdom in the Divine Word.

And now, again, they would push aside unheeded the
Word, for no one knows the true value of the Message of the Holy Grail — not one man on earth.

Even if a man imagines he has grasped the meaning, even if he is spiritually aware of the advantage he has gained in his part-knowledge, still he does not know the true, the intrinsic value; he has not understood the hundredth part.

It is I who brought this Message, who tell you this: you do not know
what treasure you have in your hands. It is the Way, the Gate, and the Key, which lead you to Life, Life that is not to be purchased with all the treasures of this earth, with all the treasures of the universe.

Draw from the bourne of Life offered you by my Message. Help yourselves to the most precious possession you could ever find. Take it as it is, without either analysing or criticising it, for then it would profit you nothing. Your task is not to interpret the Message but to make a shrine for it in your souls. It is
there you should look to see if aught be unsightly or ill-favoured. Make a temple within you and remove all that is discordant, but do not touch my Message. All who do so will be helped.