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The Consciousness of the Atom - The Evolution of Man, the Thinker
At our last lecture we took up another phase of manifestation. We studied the atom itself, and considered it as it entered into relationship with other atoms, and through their mutual coherence formed groups or congeries of atoms. In other words, we considered the atom as it was built into the different forms in the various kingdoms of nature, and found that, in the process of evolution atoms themselves gravitate towards other and greater central points, becoming in their turn [81] electrons. Thus, every form is but an aggregate of smaller lives.

Very briefly then we touched upon the different kingdoms of nature, and traced the development of the soul, or the psyche in all of them. Of the atom we have already predicated intelligence, or discriminative power, and we found that in the building up of forms in the mineral, vegetable, and animal kingdoms what we understand as sensation begins to appear, and we then have the rudiments of embryonic emotion, or feeling - the physical plane reflection of love. Thus we have one aspect of the threefold nature of God, intelligence, demonstrating through the atom; and through the form we have the love, or attractive quality manifesting. This can also be expressed in the recognition that in these two aspects of the central divine life you have the third person of the Logoic Trinity cooperating with the second; you have the intelligent activity of divinity, or the Holy Spirit aspect, working in connection with the second aspect, or the Son, Who is the builder of forms. This is brought out in an interesting manner in Proverbs viii. where Wisdom cries aloud (Wisdom in the Old Testament representing the Christ aspect), and after pointing out that He was with God before ever there was creation, goes on to say that when "He appointed the foundations of the earth, then I [82] was by Him as the master worker or builder." Students would do well to study this chapter in connection with the ideas that we are here formulating, being careful to ascertain the exact translation.

We now come to the consideration of our subject for tonight, that of the evolution of man, the thinker. We shall see that in man comes in another aspect of divinity. Browning, in "Paracelsus," covers the subject that we have been considering in a most interesting manner, summing it up as follows:

"Thus He (God) dwells in all,
From life's minute beginnings up at last
To man - the consummation of this scheme
Of being, the completion of this sphere
Of life: whose attributes had here and there
Been scattered o'er the visible world before,
Asking to be combined, dim fragments meant
To be united in some wondrous whole,
Imperfect qualities throughout creation,
Suggesting some one creature yet to make,
Some point where all those scattered rays should meet
Convergent in the faculties of man."

Having, therefore, discovered two aspects of divinity in the atom and in the form, we shall find the triplicity perfected in man. We have been told that man is made in the image of God, and we would therefore expect to see him reflecting [83] the threefold nature of the Logos. He must demonstrate intelligence, he must show forth love, and he must manifest will. Let us consider some of the definitions of man as found in the dictionary and elsewhere. The definition found in the Standard Dictionary is a profoundly uninteresting one, and is as follows: Man is "an individual of the human race," and then follows a long list of suggestive derivations of the word man, running through every known tongue, and concluding with the statement that many of them are improbable. That derivation which ascribes the definition of man to the Sanskrit root 'man,' the one who thinks, is to my mind the most satisfying. Mrs. Besant, in one of her books, gives an exceptionally clear definition as follows: "Man is that being in whom highest spirit and lowest matter are linked together by intelligence." Man is here pictured as the meeting place for all the three lines of evolution, spirit, matter, and linking intellect; he is shown to be the one who unifies the self, the not-self, and the relation between them, and he is seen to be the knower, that which is known, and knowledge. What is the purpose of the intellect, or of knowledge? Surely its purpose is to adapt the material form to the need and requirements of the indwelling spirit, surely it is to enable the thinker within the body to utilize it intelligently, and for some definite purpose; and surely it exists [84] in order that the central energizing unit may constructively control its negative aspect. We are all of us entities, ensouling a form, and through the intelligence endeavoring to utilize that form for a specific purpose which exists within the conscious will of the true self.

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