Ever since the Eldest, in the remote prehistoric past, were agreed on opposing the incarnated Youngest so as to obstruct their leadership of humanity, the Elder has, like God43 outlined plans for the incarnations of the Youngest and the human spirits. By these plans, the Eldest, or the Elder himself, sought to lead humans astray and away from the paths of life desired by God.
The Elder has in the same way pre-determined the fates of entire peoples, entire nations, to lead as many as possible away from the paths of the Light.
Since all thoughts44—evil as well as good—are caught and reflected by the ether, the Elder’s decisions about future events were recorded as images in the ether of Darkness about the Globe.
Three types of ether-images occur: images for the future, images of the present, and after-images.
1) Images for the future are, as already mentioned, the records of the Elder’s predeterminations for the fate and conduct of individual humans and of entire nations. These images, meant to bring misfortune and suffering upon humanity, like all else originating with Darkness have also been made to serve the cause of the Light under the Law of Balance. The discarnate Youngest—the leaders and guardian spirits of mankind—have thus been able to discern from these forecasts what plots and designs threatened their charges at the hands of the Eldest. By observing whether the contours of the images were indistinct or sharply defined, the Youngest have been able to ascertain if the recorded events lay near or far from the present, whereupon they could then take precautions that might avert or mitigate destructive or ominous happenings that threatened the individual or all humanity.
For nations, the Elder normally outlined his predeterminations for a number of centuries ahead so that by the time of his return to God many images had been recorded in the ether of the Darkness surrounding the Earth, meant to affect the ways of living of all peoples and all nations for many years to come in accordance with his will. Not only that, but when some years before his return he understood the Light must ultimately defeat him he had devised further appalling occurrences for the future of nations. These took the form of devastating wars, assassinations, yet more wars, misfortune and misery and so on and on, the Elder reasoning that the mutual hatred, envy and lust for power among humans would help him draw Darkness closer about the Earth and thus, despite the counteraction of the Youngest, postpone the day of victory of the Light over him. The Youngest, aware of both these and the earlier predeterminations, did their utmost to prevent them from becoming reality on the earthly plane. At the time45 that Christ succeeded in winning back his older brother, a number of these ominous events had already come to pass as realities on the Earth, while others were about to do so. The Youngest tried in many ways to divert or moderate the existing and impending conflicts between the governments of the nations and thus, if possible, forestall the outbreak of the appalling wars such conflicts would otherwise bring. But their persistent efforts to guide the leaders and the rulers into peaceful settlements of their standing disputes proved fruitless and many of the Elder’s ether-recordings were called to reality in the earthly world by the will for evil of human beings themselves. Although the Elder bears chief responsibility for the recorded predeterminations, humans must also bear grave and onerous guilt for the horrors, murders and misdeeds committed through human malice, hatred, greed and lust for power. Such deeds could have been avoided had humans striven for the good and the true in life instead of heeding the promptings of revenge and injustice. And are the Youngest in future to be able to prevent the Elder’s remaining, threatening ether-recordings from being brought about on the earthly plane at the time appointed by him, humans must themselves—especially those who lead and rule—assist by paying greater heed to the admonitions of their conscience. The efforts of the Youngest otherwise will be in vain, for God compels none to turn away from Darkness, compels none to do that which is right.
Clairvoyant human beings have often been able to see images of the Elder’s forecasts, but through abnormal refractions in the ether these images occasionally also have become known to non-mediums. Some have thus simultaneously seen ether-images—forewarnings—such as of marching soldiers, of battle scenes, murders and the like. The images have appeared in the open (somewhat like earthly reflections in the atmosphere—mirages) or in enclosed spaces, for example in halls and rooms of manor houses and castles, in ordinary dwellings and so on where the actual crimes foreshadowed by the ether-images subsequently came to reality.
Similarly, abnormal refractions in the ethereal sound-waves have produced sounds audible in the earthly world as omens—such as sounds of battle, of train collisions, of cries, sighs and groans, of firm, stealthy or dragging footsteps, and much more.
These phenomena will not be explained in more detail, since all will gradually cease as the Darkness is eliminated.
Not all criminal acts originate with the Elder’s ether-recordings. Often they are due to mutual human hatred, envy and so forth. Likewise, by no means can all misfortunes of past, present and future be blamed on the Elder. Many are due to human recklessness, indolence, negligence, dereliction of duty, and so forth. Persons who in these or in other ways cause the maiming or death of themselves or of others must bear the full responsibility and cannot lay the blame upon the Elder.
2) Images of the present are recordings in the ether of human thoughts that likewise in many ways influence the lives of the individual human being and of all mankind.
As all thoughts are received and transmitted by the ether-waves, people influence46 each other for good or for evil. Depraved, weak people attract unclean and evil thoughts to themselves so that they often commit acts under the influence or compulsion of thoughts conceived by others. Those who send forth47the thoughts and those who carry them into action must in such instances share the responsibility. But only God can then determine if the actions are due to one’s own thoughts or to thoughts attracted toward or forced upon one.
The principle psychic law on which the telepathic power of thought is based will not be disclosed from the transcendental side, since the ethical level of mankind is not yet advanced enough to preclude the abuse of such knowledge.
By experiment however, humans may possibly themselves come to recognize and apply some of the more elementary laws for telepathy of thought.
3) After-images are reflections in the ether of human actions carried out by plan or brought about through sudden thoughts (one’s own, or attracted, or imposed from without).
The moment thought becomes action, its image fades and vanishes, and as the action is carried out it is recorded or reflected in all detail. However, the image of the action seldom corresponds entirely to the image of the thought since people almost never carry out their actions exactly as intended, even if planned with the greatest of care. Many unexpected turns of events often interfere at the moment of action whereby much can be changed or prevented.
The after-images that reflect evil human actions such as murder or similar misdeeds, are often fixed for long periods in the accumulations of Darkness at the scene of the crime. These images dissolve and disappear when the perpetrators have fully repented of the sin. If the offender fails to repent during life on Earth or during the period for contemplation and repentance allotted each spirit on release at physical death, the image remains at the scene of the crime until the sin has been atoned for in some way in a new incarnation. Thus, after-images have often remained for centuries at the same place.
In contrast to the thoughts, borne off by the ether-waves, the images of evil and vile actions are reflected in the accumulations of Darkness, to remain there until they fade and disappear. Images of good actions are reflected in the radiations of Light from the spirit-body.
The radiations of Darkness from after-images can often evoke a distinct feeling of unease in sensitive people who may be present at scenes of past crimes. Clairvoyants have often seen and described after-images of battle, murder, robbery and other misdeeds.
After-images of good or insignificant actions dissolve and gradually fade away as the action withdraws in the individual’s memory; but when the human spirit is released at earthly death, everything—both good and bad—stands recorded in the consciousness of the spirit.
In similar fashion as after-images are retained in accumulations of Darkness, sounds from crimes already committed such as cries, blows, axe strokes, tramping, shuffling footsteps and so forth, can be retained for long periods in accumulations of Darkness. These may occasionally become audible in the earthly world at scenes of past crimes, and can be so “real” as to be heard by people not gifted as mediums. They will cease as the accumulations of Darkness are gradually eliminated.
As human thought is a reflection of God’s Thought, humans are able, by the existence of their thought, to give form and shape to the products of their imagination so that these can appear visibly on the astral plane. In contrast to the spiritual beings that God has created, the figments of human fantasy are not everlasting but only ephemeral and their existence subject to dissolution and extinction.
The more advanced the spirit bound to the human body, the more distinct and real its thought-images or phantoms. But rarely do people shape or finish their thoughts completely, so that what appears or is brought forth in the spiritual-astral substance is usually blurry, colorless and incomplete. Authors, painters, sculptors, poets and others who wish to transform their thought with the help of earthly materials so that in some way it can be perceived and understood by their fellow beings, consciously or subconsciously form or create in their minds one or more images of that which they wish to make accessible to perception by the senses. The clarity, degree of color and durability of the images and phantoms are dependent on their creators’ ability to work in the spiritual-astral material. As a rule, the images are obliterated when the originator relinquishes the initial thought to allow new images, new phantoms to appear.
Since clairvoyant humans can usually see these thought-phantoms but not always distinguish between a phantom or a human spirit within their field of vision, many legends and fantastic tales have arisen regarding the so-called "elemental spirits".
From the earliest ages, after God had endowed mankind with spiritual life (thought and will), the human beings—especially the most primitive, least developed—have imagined nature populated with invisible beings capable of intervening in earthly existence in various ways, and of making themselves visible to the human eye. The forests, seas, rivers, lakes, mountains and so forth all had their own spirits—good or bad-natured, helpful, mischievous or vindictive beings. In the forms created by human thought, they could be seen by clairvoyants. Many even believed the elemental spirits ruled over and regulated nature, that animal and plant life was dependent on the vigilance of these creatures. As all natural life is subject to established laws, it is easy to see that all such beliefs are but fantasy. Gradually, as human spirits mature, as their insight deepens and they lose all belief in independently thinking and acting elemental spirits, and as these beliefs therefore no longer occupy their thought, the phantoms will dissolve and disappear.
Owing to the removal of all Earth-bound spirits, possessions by these spirits can no longer take place. Where an apparent possession is now found, the cause of such malicious, evil or confused behavior must be explained in other ways. Three possibilities are:
1) One of the Eldest is bound to the body (many are still incarnated among humans). (NOTE: This applies at the time of publication, the year 1920.)
2) Split personality, that is, memories from previous lives on Earth emerge in the person’s consciousness to cause regression to one or more earlier personalities. This can occur if the layer of isolation between the spirit and the body has been damaged by the incursions of Darkness, often brought about by the individual’s own evil thoughts and sinful mode of life; or it may be due to misuse of mediumistic talent.
While the spirits of the dead walked the Earth’s plane, split personalities48 often arose from their malignant possession of human beings. The “dead” would thrust aside the spirit bound to the body and assume its place. But as the parasitic spirit was not bound by the life-giving cord, its energy would sooner or later weaken, obliging it to return the borrowed body to its rightful owner, who would only be partly in rapport with the physical brain during the possession. The spirit thus temporarily thrust aside could usually remember it had shared its physical body with one or more intruders, but sometimes there was no such remembrance.
3) Radiations from accumulations of Darkness that collect about an individual, attracted by the Darkness emitting from that individual’s personality. The meeting of these two forms of Darkness will then result in evil and impure thoughts or in criminal actions.
There is often a fourth category, but here the spirit bound to the physical body is usually not responsible for what happens. For example, if the physical brain49 has in some way been damaged by concussion, sickness or old age, the spirit cannot come into rapport with it and so loses some, occasionally all control with the result that such persons are no longer "themselves"—that is, they lose their individual personalities.
(If you are reading this in a computerized file format, page references cannot be found unless you have a copy of the original printed book on hand)
43) Commentary to Ardor’s Account, page 184.
44) The thoughts of God and the discarnate Youngest are not recorded in the ether that surrounds the Globe.
45) In the year 1912.
46) Mass suggestion through thought can for example give rise to patriotism, war fervor, revolutionary movements, the founding of religious sects and so forth.
47) Since the thought has its seat in the large nerve center of the spirit-body, it is the psychic brain that is influenced, it being both the transmitter and the receiver of thought.
47) Split personalities were not and are not always authentic, since they are often the result of a human desire to attract attention or to appear interesting.
49) Summary, page 288, regarding the afflicted, abnormal brain.