EVOLUTION OF THE ELEMENTS
Erle Frayne D. Argonza
Good day to thee!
Let it be re-echoed that the spiritually Perfected Ones who passed on to mankind the esoteric knowledge since antiquity yet, do not hold the notion of ‘creation’ in describing the progressive unfolding of phenomena from the noumenon (of effects from the prima causa). Rather, evolution is the term used to label that progression, a term that is sometimes interchanged with emanation.
The Law of Evolution was already articulated by this Adept of the spiritual Brotherhood in a previous article, so please refer to that note for clarification. It is the folks and theologians who have associated the term ‘creation’ to describe the unfolding of phenomena.
Thus, elements that comprise our very own world—the Solar system—came to pass through evolution too. The Perfected Ones declared in Sloka 3 of Stanza 6, Book of Dzyan, the following cogitation:
OF THE SEVEN (elements)—FIRST ONE MANIFESTED, SIX CONCEALED; TWO MANIFESTED—FIVE CONCEALED; THREE MANIFESTED—FOUR CONCEALED; FOUR PRODUCED—THREE HIDDEN; FOUR AND ONE TSAN (fraction) REVEALED—TWO AND ONE HALF CONCEALED; SIX TO BE MANIFESTED—ONE LAID ASIDE (a). LASTLY, SEVEN SMALL WHEELS REVOLVING; ONE GIVING BIRTH TO THE OTHER (b).
In her commentary on the subject, HPBlavatsky articulated in Volume I, Secret Doctrine, the following:
(a.) Although these Stanzas refer to the whole Universe after a Mahapralaya (universal destruction), yet this sentence, as any student of Occultism may see, refers also by analogy to the evolution and final formation of the primitive (though compound) Seven Elements on our Earth. Of these, four elements are now fully manifested, while the fifth—Ether—is only partially so, as we are hardly in the second half of the Fourth Round, and consequently the fifth Element will manifest fully only in the Fifth Round. The Worlds, including our own, were of course, as germs, primarily evolved from the ONE Element in its second stage (“Father-Mother,” the differentiated World’s Soul, not what is termed the “Over-Soul” by Emerson), whether we call it, with modern Science, Cosmic dust and Fire Mist, or with Occultism—Akâsa, Jivâtma, divine Astral Light, or the “Soul of the World.” But this first stage of Evolution was in due course of time followed by the next. No world, as no heavenly body, could be constructed on the objective plane, had not the Elements been sufficiently differentiated already from their primeval Ilus, resting in Laya. The latter term is a synonym of Nirvana. It is, in fact, the Nirvanic dissociation of all substances, merged after a life-cycle into the latency of their primary conditions. It is the luminous but bodiless shadow of the matter that was, the realm of negativeness—wherein lie latent during their period of rest the active Forces of the Universe. Now, speaking of Elements, it is made the standing reproach of the Ancients, that they “supposed their Elements simple and undecomposable.”* Once more this is an unwarrantable statement; as, at any rate, their initiated philosophers can hardly come under such an imputation, since it is they who have invented allegories and religious myths from the beginning. Had they been ignorant of the Heterogeneity of their Elements they would have had no personifications of Fire, Air, Water, Earth, and Æther; their Cosmic gods and goddesses would never have been blessed with such posterity, with so many sons and daughters, elements born from and within each respective Element. Alchemy and occult phenomena would have been a delusion and a snare, even in theory, had the Ancients been ignorant of the potentialities and correlative functions and attributes of every element that enters into the composition of Air, Water, Earth, and even Fire—the latter a terra incognita to this day to modern Science, which is obliged to call it Motion, evolution of light and heat, state of ignition,—defining it by its outward aspects in short, and remaining ignorant of its nature. But that which molecule entirely homogeneous is terra incognita in chemistry. “Where are we to draw the line?” he asks; “is there no way out of this perplexity? Must we either make the elementary examinations so stiff that only 60 or 70 candidates can pass, or must we open the examination doors so wide that the number of admissions is limited only by the number of applicants?” And then the learned gentleman gives striking instances. He says: “Take the case of yttrium. It has its definite atomic weight, it behaved in every respect as a simple body, an element, to which we might indeed add, but from which we could not take away. Yet this yttrium, this supposed homogeneous whole, on being submitted to a certain method of fractionation, is resolved into portions not absolutely identical among themselves, and exhibiting a gradation of properties. Or take the case of didymium. Here was a body betraying all the recognised characters of an element. It had been separated with much difficulty from other bodies which approximated closely to it in their properties, and during this crucial process it had undergone very severe treatment and very close scrutiny. But then came another chemist, who, treating this assumed homogeneous body by a peculiar process of fractionation, resolved it into the two bodies praseodymium and neodymium, between which certain distinctions are perceptible. Further, we even now have no certainty that neodymium and praseodymium are simple bodies. On the contrary, they likewise exhibit symptoms of splitting up. Now, if one supposed element on proper treatment is thus found to comprise dissimilar molecules, we are surely warranted in asking whether similar results might not be obtained in other elements, perhaps in all elements, if treated in the right way. We may even ask where the process of sorting-out is to stop—a process which of course pre-supposes variations between the individual molecules of each species. And in these successive separations we naturally find bodies approaching more and more closely to each other.” (Presidential address before the Royal Society of Chemists, March, 1888.) modern Science seems to fail to perceive is that, differentiated as may have been those simple chemical atoms—which archaic philosophy called “the creators of their respective Parents,” fathers, brothers, husbands of their mothers, and those mothers the daughters of their own sons, like Aditi and Daksha, for example—differentiated as these elements were in the beginning, still, they were not the compound bodies known to science, as they are now. Neither Water, Air, Earth (synonym for solids generally) existed in their present form, representing the three states of matter alone recognised by Science; for all these are the productions already recombined by the atmospheres of globes completely formed—even to fire—so that in the first periods of the earth’s formation they were something quite sui generis. Now that the conditions and laws ruling our solar system are fully developed; and that the atmosphere of our earth, as of every other globe, has become, so to say, a crucible of its own, Occult Science teaches that there is a perpetual exchange taking place in space of molecules, or of atoms rather, correlating, and thus changing their combining equivalents on every planet. Some men of Science, and those among the greatest physicists and chemists, begin to suspect this fact, which has been known for ages to the Occultists. The spectroscope only shows the probable similarity (on external evidence) of terrestrial and sidereal substance; it is unable to go any farther, or to show whether atoms gravitate towards one another in the same way and under the same conditions as they are supposed to do on our planet, physically and chemically. The scale of temperature, from the highest degree to the lowest that can be conceived of, may be imagined to be one and the same in and for the whole Universe; nevertheless, its properties, other than those of dissociation and re-association, differ on every planet; and thus atoms enter into new forms of existence, undreamt of, and incognizable to, physical Science. As already expressed in “Five Years of Theosophy,” the essence of Cometary matter, for instance, “is totally different from any of the chemical or physical characteristics with which the greatest chemists and physicists of the earth are acquainted” (p. 242). And even that matter, during rapid passage through our atmosphere, undergoes a certain change in its nature. Thus not alone the elements of our planets, but even those of all its sisters in the Solar System, differ as widely from each other in their combinations, as from the Cosmic elements beyond our
Solar limits.* Therefore, they cannot be taken as a standard for comparison with the same in other worlds.† Enshrined in their virgin, pristine state within the bosom of the Eternal Mother, every atom born beyond the threshold of her realm is doomed to incessant differentiation. “The Mother sleeps, yet is ever breathing.” And every breath sends out into the plane of manifestation her Protean products, which, carried on by the wave of the efflux, are scattered by Fohat, and driven toward and beyond this or another planetary atmosphere. Once caught by the latter, the atom is lost; its pristine purity is gone for ever, unless Fate dissociates it by leading it to “a current of EFFLUX” (an occult term meaning quite a different process from that which the ordinary term implies); when it may be carried once more to the borderland where it had perished, and taking its flight, not into Space above but into Space within, it will be brought under a state of differential equilibrium and happily re-absorbed. Were a truly learned Occultist-alchemist to write the “Life and Adventures of an Atom” he would secure thereby the eternal scorn of the modern chemist, perchance also his subsequent gratitude.* However it may be, “The Breath of the Father-Mother issues cold and radiant and gets hot and corrupt, to cool once more, and be purified in the eternal bosom of inner Space,” says the Commentary. Man absorbs cold pure air on the mountain-top, and throws it out impure, hot and transformed. Thus—the higher atmosphere being the mouth, and the lower one the lungs of every globe—the man of our planet breathes only the refuse of “Mother;” therefore, “he is doomed to die on it.”†
(b) The process referred to as “the small wheels giving birth, one to the other,” takes place in the sixth region from above, and on the plane of the most material world of all in the manifested Kosmos—our terrestrial plane. These “Seven Wheels” are our planetary chain (see Commentary Nos. 5 and 6). By “Wheels” the various spheres and centres of forces are generally meant; but in this case they refer to our septenary ring.
[Philippines, 10 April 2012]
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