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A Treatise on White Magic - Introductory Remarks
Therefore let us remember that the definition of spirit is not possible of accomplishment, nor is the definition of God. When one says that spirit is the inexpressible, undefinable cause, the emanating energy, the one life and source of being, the totality of all forces, of all states of consciousness and of all forms, the aggregate of life and that which is actively manifested of that life, the self and the not-self, force, and all that force motivates, one is in reality evading the issue, attempting the impossible and hiding truth behind a form of words. This cannot however be avoided until such time as the soul-consciousness is touched and known and the formless One can be perceived through the clear light of the intuition.

One of the first lessons we need to learn is that our minds, being as yet unresponsive to the hidden intuitions, make it impossible for us to say with assurance that such a condition is this, that or the other; that, until we can function in our soul-consciousness, it is not for us to say what is or what is not; that until we have submitted ourselves [32] to the needed training we are in no position to deny or affirm anything. Our attitude should be that of reasonable enquiry and our interest that of the investigating philosopher, willing to accept an hypothesis on the basis of its possibility, but being unwilling to acknowledge as proven truth anything until we know it for and in ourselves. I, an aspirant to the higher mysteries, and one who has searched into them for a longer period than has been possible as yet to many, may write of things as yet impossible of demonstration to you or to the public who may read these instructions. To me they may be and are truth and proven fact and for me that may suffice. For you they should be regarded as significant possibilities and hints as to the direction in which truth may be sought, but beyond that you should not permit yourself to go. The value of these instructions lies in their sum total and is to be found in the underlying structure or skeleton of coordinated and correlated statements which must be considered as a whole and not in detail and this for two reasons:

  1. Language, as earlier said, hides truth and does not reveal it. If truth is recognized, it is because the investigating student has found a point of truth in himself which serves to illumine his steps as he slowly and gradually presses forward.
  2. There are many types of minds, and it is not to be expected that the information given, for instance, in this Treatise will appeal to all. It should be remembered that all people are units of consciousness breathed forth on one of the seven emanations from God. Therefore, even their monads or spiritual aspects are inherently different just as in the prism (which is one) there are the seven differentiated colors. Even this is so only because of the nature and point of view and the perceiving apparatus of the man whose eye [33] registers and differentiates the varying rates of vibratory light. These seven subsidiary groups again produce a varying outlook, mentality, and approach, all equally right, but all presenting a slightly different angle of vision. When the above realization is coupled to such factors as the different points in evolution, varying nationalities and characteristics, the inherent distinctions brought about through the interplay between the physical body involved and the environment, it will be apparent that no approach to such abstruse subjects as the nature of spirit and soul could have a general definition and submit themselves to a universal terminology.
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