Toward the Light
Questions & Answers
An Addendum to Toward the Light
Can it be explained in earthly terms how the spirits of Light can establish direct communication with human beings, and how telepathic communication between humans can arise?
Radio transmission and reception best illustrate these forms of communication. Spirits of Light send messages, warnings and so on by transmitting their thoughts through the waves of the Light-ether to be intercepted by the psychic brain of humans. Just as “wave-lengths” are used in radio transmission on Earth, spirits of Light employ the longer or short wave-lengths in the Light-ether, attuning their thought-vibrations exactly to the ether waves that can be received by the psychic brain of the person they wish to reach.
Telepathic communication between humans is somewhat similar, the difference being that the thoughts sent forth by humans rarely reach the intended person, because the inner psychic brain structures of the sender and receiver are not attuned to each other. No directions will, of course, be given here as to how humans during life on Earth can attune the psychic brain exactly to that of another whom they wish to contact by the difficult means of telepathy. (Toward the Light, page 319: 2-3.)
Transmission and reception of thought via earthly radio is not possible. If some individuals appear to receive messages in this manner, the connection is not through radio. Rather, the psychic brain of the sender and that of the receiver correspond and happen at that moment to be attuned to the same “thought-wave.”
In this age of radio, no one familiar with how clear and sonorous radio communication can be should for a moment doubt the reality of “spiritual” (psychic) communication between the leaders of mankind—spirits of Light, the Youngest—and humans, especially since earthly radio stems from “spiritual radio”. It is merely an imitation, a faint reflection of the original. Nor should anyone doubt that “spiritual” communication can be pure and clear and unaffected by Darkness, as long as the psychic brains of sender and receiver respond to the same wave-lengths in the Light-ether. All inspiration and intuition belong to the area of “spiritual radio”, but the ether waves of both Darkness and Light can be employed by spirits of Darkness and by the spirits of Light respectively.
Why was the introductory work of producing Toward the Light based on spiritualism when spiritualism as a whole is not acknowledged under the divine laws?
The first occurrence of “occult” or spiritualistic phenomena in the earthly world originated with the Eldest, who sought by all means possible to gain dominion over the weaker, vulnerable human souls. Generation after generation has known and acknowledged such phenomena. There are accounts in ancient religious writings—and to a great extent in the Bible also—all defined as “occultism”, or the more modern “spiritualism.” Clearly, though, God has never in any way desired or sanctioned occurrences intended to be proof of transcendental intervention in the earthly world since the procedure for such proof had been given by the Eldest through the powers of Darkness.
Communication between God and humans, or between the spirits of Light and humans, has—ever since God endowed humanity with spiritual life—been based on inspiration and intuition, as well as on spontaneous thought-impulses and by spontaneous appearances by spirits of Light before human eyes.
In the 19th century, when interest in communicating with the hereafter rose again sharply, God weighed the possibility of establishing a more direct communication than in the past between spirits of Light and a few chosen humans, that He might thereby sooner redeem Ardor and the Earth-bound spirits. He could then also remove much of the Darkness reposing in the Earth’s astral surroundings. The basis for such a decision was that the spirit of the times had now matured to the extent that at least some thousands of human beings should be capable of understanding and appreciating the establishment of such a form of communication.
Before then, God’s course had been to incarnate from time to time a number of the Youngest to serve as founders of religions or as religious reformers. In this way, humans could be enlightened about the transcendental world and its laws and be led to a truer and a deeper understanding of the nature of God and of His relationship to mankind. But always the Eldest sought to lead the incarnated Youngest astray, to adulterate and distort the truths taught mankind by the Youngest. Moreover, since the Eldest during their incarnations appeared also as founders of new religious movements, or even outrightly denied the existence of God, their countering moves produced additional confusion in human religious conceptions of God, of the hereafter and of life on Earth. Numerous sects and creeds arose, whose adherents to this day oppose one another, all seeking to win others to their own postulates and dogmas. Yet even with all this disruption by the Eldest, the procedure originally laid down by God would in future—once the human spirits had grown more mature and rational—have led to the desired goal: a rejection of all existing Beliefs in favor of a true, a deep acknowledgment of God as the Creator and Father of the human spirit.
Because God seeks always to make the best of the evil onslaughts of Darkness, He now chose to attempt to oppose the Eldest with their own weapons—but by using the methods of the Light. He so chose because, among other reasons, it had been repeatedly demonstrated that it was impossible for the incarnated Youngest—surrounded by the Darkness on the Earth—to remember their pledge to their Father: to take pity on their oldest fallen brother while they lived on Earth, and to forgive him and to pray for him. As long as this pledge went unfulfilled, Ardor remained the Prince of the Earth and of mankind and any steps forward in a religious sense toward the cause of the Light could be but few and very small. God chose therefore to try the ”Shorter Road”,1 the sooner to bring order to the religious chaos on Earth through a more direct, more comprehensive guidance, and at the same time to redeem Ardor. And God instructed1 the eldest of the Youngest—Christ—as to how this could be accomplished.
In their discarnate state and thus not visible to human beings, those Youngest chosen for this work had to dwell on the astral plane of the Earth, amidst dense accumulations of Darkness and surrounded by Earth-bound spirits and the images and recordings of human sin and crime—an existence so dismal and enervating as to defy description. Earlier in human history God had avoided this method for the very reason that the existence the Youngest would have had to endure would have been so trying and full of horror, and because it could be employed only were the Youngest of their own accord to exert all their energy to overcome Darkness. But since the time had now arrived when the Youngest showed a deep and sincere desire to attain an effective and early solution to the problem of Ardor and the fallen Eldest, God knew that in all likelihood the difficult mission could finally succeed.
Since the spirits of Darkness were now to be opposed by their own weapons—occult and spiritualistic phenomena—it was essential also to employ humans on Earth who could serve as intermediaries between mankind and Christ and his helpers. To this end, God over time incarnated a number of the Youngest and certain highly advanced human spirits suited for this purpose.
The many disappointments and difficulties of the “Shorter Road” are described in Toward the Light, pages 98-100. Still, the goal was reached within the time allotted by God despite all the countering moves of the Eldest, but not before the discarnate Eldest and the discarnate Youngest had engaged in a long and bitter struggle.2 For as the Youngest sought to influence the “mediums” to work for the cause of the Light, the Eldest tried at the same time, by every means, to obstruct these mediums and to draw them deeper into Darkness. Only too often did the Eldest succeed, and at such times Christ and his helpers were compelled to turn to other mediums. This back and forth, up and down struggle between the discarnate Eldest and Youngest also stimulated among the humans on Earth a steadily rising interest in occultism, spiritualism and psychic research.
When Christ and his helpers found finally a truly suitable intermediary, they were of course obliged to impart to their earthly helper full insight not only into the fallacies and falsehoods but also into the truths of spiritualism. Their co-worker was also made fully aware of the sinister influences to which individuals are exposed by spirits of Darkness when they submit to trances and physical manifestations (materializations). Not until this had been achieved, and all possibility thereby eliminated that the earthly intermediary might be brought under the direct influence of Darkness, could the actual task begin—that of delivering the Elder (Ardor) and the brothers and sisters who fell with him, as well as of inducing the Earth-bound spirits to depart the Earth’s stratum of their own accord. Besides showing the earthly co-worker the proper way of rendering her assistance, this procedure also made her aware of how mistaken the teachings of spiritualism were, and necessarily had to be. In this way, the spirits of Light were also enabled to strike a blow at the spiritualist movement, in order that—during the transference of Toward the Light—they could include a solemn warning to all involved with spiritualistic phenomena and enjoin them to cease such communications, forbidden under God’s laws.
When Christ and his helpers finally had achieved full victory over the Darkness, and thus reached the goal established for them by their Father, they all returned to their abodes. And from that moment none of the spirits of Light have participated in any spiritualistic séance in any way. The only connection so-called mediums now have with the spirits of Light is through their guardian spirit—their conscience—the same as any other humans. Any assertion by spiritualism to the contrary has not the slightest connection with the truth. Let this be emphatically repeated: such is the way it is, and not otherwise, for among the mediums of the spiritualists are many who have appointed themselves links between this world and that which they say is the world of Light. Their claim is untrue! Their messages and religious views are quite worthless. There is no further reason for the existence of spiritualism, and the sooner the spiritualists understand this and act accordingly, the better for themselves and for those they mislead.
Thus, the “Shorter Road” proved feasible. The goal has been reached and the struggle between the discarnate Eldest and Youngest is at an end—never again to resume!
Although spiritualism and its various forerunners3 are originally due to the influence of the Eldest on humanity, thus placing their roots in Darkness, such forms of transcendental communication have admittedly brought mankind certain benefits that should not be under-rated. Many have come thereby to realize that earthly life ends not when the body expires but continues beyond the grave, that human spirits must be incarnated time and again to be able finally to reach God’s Kingdom, that the spirits of Darkness have led humans astray in numerous ways, and that many psychic and physical powers exist whose use remains an enigma to humans because of lack of proper understanding. And since God permitted the Youngest for a time, and under the laws of the Light, to establish communication with certain humans chosen for the purpose, the following results have been achieved: Ardor—known as Satan—has returned to the Father, all future incarnations of the fallen Eldest have been brought under God’s leadership, all Earth-bound spirits have been removed from the Earth’s stratum, and all images in the ether that had reflected human sin and misdeed—recorded during the time the Earth-bound spirits lived as humans in the physical world—have been obliterated and can never reappear, because Ardor is no longer the Prince of Darkness.
Furthermore, mankind has been presented with Toward the Light and The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road 4 as visible results of the work of the Youngest. Much time must of course pass before mankind will be able to fully appreciate the worth of these gifts and benefits, even though many are already aware of their unique value. The time will come, however, when, with gratitude and understanding, human beings will recognize the work that has been done to make easier their journey toward the distant Home of the Father.
Many will perhaps object that by employing the aspects of Light that exist in spiritualism to reach their goal, the spirits of Light have themselves caused spiritualism to become as widespread as it is. The only answer to this is that it was done in accordance with the wish of God, in the manner indicated by Him and under His guidance, because God knew that maturing human beings would one day be able to not only understand the procedure employed but also to understand the results thereof. And He knew also that, although the teachings of spiritualism would have many followers for long to come, the dominion over humans by the spirits of Darkness through the various manifestations of spiritualism would in reality be broken on Ardor’s return to God’s Kingdom. It would therefore be only a question of a longer or shorter time before the hold of spiritualism on the human mind would cease altogether. To help bring this to an early realization, clear and solemn warnings are given in Toward the Light.
May this work soon be understood!
1) How should the term “medium” be correctly understood? 2) Are mediumistic talents to be found only among so-called spiritualists?
1) “Medium” or “intermediary” describes a person in some way suited to serve as a link between the visible and the invisible worlds. Such persons can be employed by either spirits of Light or spirits of Darkness (the incarnated “Eldest”) and by human spirits who visit the Earth’s plane without permission.
Spirits of Light no longer appear at spiritualistic séances as leaders nor as religious speakers,5 as claimed by spiritualists. They act only through spontaneous phenomena at the request of, and under the direction of God. When Christ searched for helpers on Earth in order to redeem Ardor, he was accompanied by a number of the Youngest. During this period, they and Christ often visited small, private circles to try to influence the members so that they might become suitable for the work. But this work has long ceased and with it any reason for spirits of Light to appear at either public or private spiritualistic séances. However, the spirits of Darkness act either through spontaneous phenomena or through the spiritualistic séances arranged by humans. But communication through spiritualistic séances is not permitted under God’s laws, and neither are spontaneous communications via thought-impulses, visions and various other types of phenomena caused by spirits of Darkness.
Anyone experiencing occult phenomena should be able to determine whether a spirit of Darkness or of the Light stands back of it. In any case, a sincere prayer to God will bring the necessary help to clarify the issue. The only direct daily communication a spiritualistic medium has with the spirits of Light is with the guardian spirit (the conscience), who always tries to guide its charge away from the influence of spiritualism. But if the charge heeds not such admonitions, more and more Darkness will be attracted until finally the voice of conscience can no longer be heard—absorbed by and unable to penetrate the dense wall of Darkness. This leaves the spirits of Darkness at liberty to deliver their false messages, meaningless fantasies and religious sermons, whose substance conflicts with that which is stated in Toward the Light and its supplements.
2) No! Since all communication with the invisible world takes place through inspiration, intuition and various spontaneous impulses, it stands to reason that people of mediumistic talents need not be, and preferably should not be spiritualists to be able to act as intermediaries between humans and the hereafter.
All who in the cause of the Light have something to offer humanity through invention, science, art, religion and so on, are mediums (intermediaries, that is) between the visible and the invisible worlds. They are the interpreters, the necessary link between humanity and the inexhaustible sources of spiritual life that spring from the Light. Through inspiration and through their own intuition they are aided in bringing to humanity such new knowledge or improvements as the spirit of the times is mature enough to accept. But spirits of Light also often work for objectives in the distant future, and thus what humans receive in this way often goes far beyond what the spirit of the times can comprehend. Thus these messengers of the Light are often misunderstood and denounced by their contemporaries. But no one has the right to term such people “spiritualists”, regardless of the area in which they serve God and the Light.
Since Toward the Light so clearly dissociates itself from spiritualism, why include the section (page 253) on transcendental communication? Or do these circumstances have no bearing on “spiritualism”?
The circumstances bear only indirectly on spiritualism.
First and foremost, this paragraph should be taken in context with the preceding paragraph on page 252:22 “Should God in future need humans as helpers or intermediaries, the spirits of Light know many ways in which to call upon humans so as to communicate with them whenever desired. . .” This, therefore, refers to spirits of Light, and to guardian spirits in particular, as clearly shown in the succeeding paragraph. Further, on page 253, it says that people who receive messages from the transcendental side without having requested them, will always also receive necessary direct or indirect proof so as to remove any doubt as to the identity of the originator. Thus it is clearly a matter of identifying spirits of Light, not personalities of deceased humans. Proofs can be given in many ways, for example through the intuitive understanding of the recipient, through visions, through the logical, clear and concise presentation of the messages, and so on.
It is further stated on page 253 that if communications with humans are initiated from the transcendental side, this is usually because those concerned had been chosen previous to their incarnation to assist on Earth in spreading knowledge and understanding of life after death—through the written or spoken word, or the like. These relationships therefore fall into the category of “psychic research”, which is related only indirectly to spiritualism. People can thus very well be engaged in psychic research and still dissociate themselves entirely from spiritualism. Those who for some reason have been chosen to gather information—either through their own experiences or the experiences of others—to enable them by various means (written or oral) to demonstrate to their fellow beings the close relationship that exists between the invisible and visible worlds, should never (as also said on page 253) allow themselves to be intimidated by the lack of judgment or insight of others into these matters. Even should they be labeled “spiritualists”, though they are not, the term is meaningless if in all they do they allow themselves to be guided by their guardian spirit (the conscience).
Therefore, the paragraph mentioned can never be of direct benefit to spiritualism, since it refers not to communication with spirits of the “deceased”. Reference is made only to people not already bound by the often deficient, false and misleading explanations and postulates of spiritualism. It refers only to those who are chosen and are able to collect, sort out and judge, if not all, at least some of the matter brought to light through occult phenomena. Unfortunately, few are fully able to classify and judge such phenomena and experiences, even if chosen for this purpose. For if the postulates of spiritualism do not bind them, they can yet be bound by much else in life on Earth, such as by the dogmas and postulates of Christianity, Theosophy, Anthroposophy or various other creeds. Only those utterly free of prejudice and able to ignore fully that which is already accepted and established can properly undertake such a task with any promise of true results. And since the so-called spiritualistic mediums usually hail from the general populace, it should be obvious that they are not the ones to be entrusted tasks of such educational nature. Only truly cultured, enlightened and well-educated individuals—the incarnated Youngest or spiritually highly advanced humans—incarnated on the earthly scene can be entrusted such work.
It should also be remembered that the spiritualists cannot adopt the terms “medium” or “intermediary” to apply only to their intermediaries between the invisible and visible worlds. The terms apply in the broadest sense to all people who in one way or another can be employed by the spirits of Light in their inspirational activities on Earth. (See also the answer to Question 4.)
Cannot spiritualists also experience spontaneous phenomena caused by spirits of Light?
Spiritualists can of course also experience spontaneous communications with the spirits of Light, through visions, dream warnings, visions of death and so on, but only at the wish of the transcendental side––not because of demands or special preparations by humans. And it occurs without the intervention of spiritualistic mediums and will therefore never take place at spiritualistic séances.
However, such spontaneous phenomena can also be caused by the incarnated Eldest and be experienced by spiritualists and non-spiritualists alike. Thus anyone experiencing an occult phenomenon should attempt to categorize it and consider carefully if the originator can be identified as a spirit of Darkness or of the Light. Hideous visions, loud knocks, explosive sounds,6 mocking calls, malicious or obscene impulses and similar spontaneous phenomena are always due to the Eldest, who, during nightly disembodiment as they sleep, try unlawfully to influence unstable souls. A prayer to God for help to prevent such eerie experiences will always be answered, and thus make recurrences impossible. But the prayer must be heartfelt, or it will be of no use.
However, other phenomena such as visions of a certain beauty, formations of multi-colored lights, religious inspirations, warnings of death and the like, could have the appearance of being caused by spirits of Light. In such cases, an individual should also pray to God for enlightenment. If then the mind feels calmed and peaceful, a spirit of Light was the cause. Should there however be unease and an unpleasant preoccupation with the experience, then it will be known that a spirit of Darkness was to blame, seeking to dominate the individual.
Is the statement (Toward the Light, pages 236 and 247), concerning the removal from the Earth of the Earth-bound spirits, more than an unproven assumption?
The statement is absolutely true.
Stern warnings are given (pages 250 and 253) to mediums of all forms of spiritualism against involving themselves with spirits of the “dead”, since mediums can only hinder and delay such spirits at every point rather than be helpful to them in any way.
But as long as the warning in Toward the Light on this subject remains generally unknown, no appreciable improvement can be expected in relation to human spirits from the fifth sphere and from the lower strata of the sixth. (Spirits who dwell in the first four spheres are prevented by the barrier of Light from descending to the Earth’s stratum unless with permission and assisted by their guardian spirit. See Toward the Light, page 249, concerning the barrier of Light.)
The reason “Earth-bound” spirits appear yet to exist is that spiritualistic mediums continue to hold séances that prompt irresolute human spirits to leave their abodes in the spheres in order to appear at these séances. But spirits who visit the Earth’s stratum without permission—drawn by the insistent thoughts and desires of mediums, friends and relatives for manifestations—always feel bewildered, miserable and despondent amidst the earthly accumulations of Darkness. And when they find themselves in earthly surroundings their earthly memories immediately awaken and, in most instances, remembrance of their existence in the spheres from whence they came departs. They feel rather as individuals beset by agonizing and confusing dreams. But just as sleeping humans can act and think sensibly in their dreams, so can human spirits unlawfully present at séances on the Earth describe instances from their former life on Earth, and do so factually in every detail, or touching upon the facts. When these spirits return to their homes again in the spheres, they recall their earthly visits as if awaking from a nightmare or a weird dream. Thousands of human spirits are daily drawn to the Earth, and daily the spirits of Light guide the disobedient back to their homes in the spheres.
Not only such human spirits but also numerous of the incarnated Eldest can attend spiritualistic séances while disembodied at night.7 Wherever they appear, these Eldest can in many ways exert a disturbing and degrading spiritual influence through false information—for instance, of a religious nature—as well as by seeking to instill base, evil or sinful thoughts in the minds of those present. The Youngest cannot always prevent this, even though they try to protect humans by accompanying the Eldest on their unlawful excursions. (Toward the Light, page 293:3.) Individuals must themselves seek to avoid the influence of the Eldest, firstly by not attending séances, secondly by always heeding their conscience, and finally by praying to God for help and protection. For only God can erect a protecting wall of Light between humans and those of the Eldest still able to influence them in wicked ways.
The Eldest incarnated by Ardor can thus continue for some years yet to exercise an adverse influence upon mankind, but no longer can they possess human beings—not even during nocturnal disembodiment, because they remain connected to their sleeping bodies at such times. Only discarnate spirits have been able to possess humans, and since the Eldest are now, upon physical death, removed to distant globes from which there is for them no return possible to the Earth, it is entirely out of the question that possession can take place, now or ever again.
Why does God not call back from earthly life the Eldest whom Ardor incarnated, since they do such harm amongst humans? Why must they remain here 50 or 60 years more?8
Ardor has stipulated the time of death for all those Eldest incarnated by him. Should this be changed so that God might earlier recall these Eldest, each would have to give consent. However, God had spoken to all the Eldest during a nightly disembodiment as they slept and only a few had complied with His wish that they depart from life on Earth. And since God never opposes the free will of the individual, He cannot cause the others to “die” before the time determined by Ardor.
Can humans be possessed by the discarnate human spirits who unlawfully visit the Earth?
No. Human spirits have not the power of will necessary to join with, to cling closely, to a human body.
The possessions before the year 1911, when Earth-bound spirits still frequented the earthly stratum, occurred only because thousands upon thousands of the discarnate Eldest could be found among these Earth-bound spirits. (Concerning apparent “possessions”, see Toward the Light, page 312: 3-6, and 313: 1, 2.)
How can humans determine if they are under the influence of the powers of Darkness or of the Light?
Light and Darkness, the two powerful magnetic forces, influence the human world each in its own way. The Light is guided by the Thought and Will of God, whereas Darkness acts partly under guidance, partly blindly and aimlessly. If Darkness at present9 exerts a guiding influence on human beings, this stems from the incarnate Eldest during their nocturnal disembodiments or from spirits of deceased humans on unlawful visits to the Earth’s stratum. Such forms of the influence of Darkness will always manifest in such a way as to leave the affected individual with a distinct feeling of mental constraint. If the influence is without guidance—that is, exclusively through the radiations of accumulated Darkness—the feeling of constraint is less pronounced.
On the other hand, the influence of the Light never imparts any feeling of constraint. Slowly and calmly, almost imperceptibly, the guardian spirit (the conscience) guides the individual in under the Light, and this influence continually strengthens as the individual submits unresistingly to its guidance. But if the individual should begin to compromise with the conscience, to place demands on the invisible guide, or to doubt that this guidance is based on the thought and will of God, such demands and such doubts will automatically attract Darkness, since any doubt, any lack of belief in an absolutely just and logical divine guidance in earthly life, is rooted in the confusing and degrading power of Darkness. The same holds true for demands placed by humans upon God.
Therefore, if one feels as though under strong mental constraint in one way or another, either the powers of Darkness, or spirits of Darkness are back of this feeling. By contrast, the influence of the Light is felt as a profound calm and peace of mind.
Do humans have a clear-cut standard for evaluating “spiritual truths”?
The perfect calm and peace that fills the minds of spiritually advanced humans when they have found what they seek is the standard by which they intuitively recognize the truth, for such calm and peace will always stand in contrast to the unease of uncertainty and falsehood.
It is rare for people to whose physical bodies young and undeveloped spirits are bound to be able to feel this, the exalted calm and peace of the eternal truths. As these people are so dependent on the world of Darkness in which they live, it is difficult for their undeveloped thought to distinguish between the true and the false; therefore, they rarely search for spiritual truths themselves but are content to walk the beaten and familiar paths of the herd. Blindly they follow in the footsteps of their leaders, believing as eternal divine truths all that these leaders proclaim—even if such assumptions have nothing to do with the truth.
It requires great spiritual maturity to be able from one’s innermost self to weigh, measure and recognize the proper value of the spiritual truths.
Why was a woman entrusted the task of bringing Toward the Light to the earthly world? Why not a clergyman—a prelate or a theologian, for instance? Shouldn’t a man have been chosen?
Let us look closer at the question, for there are several reasons God favored a woman for the task. Go back to that point where God knew the return of Ardor was imminent, and that God intended to inform mankind of what had happened as soon as the return had become fact. How could such information be given most clearly, most convincingly? The inquirer suggests a clergyman—a prelate or a theologian, say—might have been better suited to assist in communicating with humanity at large. The inquirer’s understanding of the matter is thus quite different from that of God, as the following will show:
The work would have to be carried out through inspiration (thought-impulses from the Youngest) and therefore through a prelate’s intuition. That would be the first difficulty, for the male intuitive ability is not normally as strong, pure and clear as a woman’s. God could have strengthened the man’s intuition, but then the man’s will would also have had to be strengthened, since a strong and clear intuition unaccompanied by an equally strong will to reproduce and comply with the impulses received could not possibly have led to a satisfactory result. But a strengthened male will could also easily lead to an absolute “willfulness” that could in no way be expected to meet with God’s Will. The prelate might have complied to some extent with the impulses received, but his religious and clerical ties and his “willfulness” would have inclined him to draw his own conclusions from whatever he received from the transcendental world. Thus there would have been a more or less obscuring and distorting of the facts that God wished to bring to the knowledge of mankind, study in comparative religious history—a work perhaps not without merit but yet in this case falling short of conveying what God intended to be emphasized.
However, God meant not only to impart to mankind knowledge of Ardor‘s return, of his fall and of his creation of the human body; not only to provide the main religions and the various religious trends and numerous sects with a common basis in truth, but also to give humans the facts about transcendental10 communications and to warn them of the danger of uncritical involvement with occult or spiritualistic manifestations. And though it is conceivable that a prelate or theologian could have been guided by the Youngest to develop an interest in these phenomena, such an individual would likely not have involved himself in thorough psychic research for any length of time. Nor would he likely have studied the truths and dangers of occult and spiritualistic phenomena by personal experiment, even were he guided by God and the Youngest. At best he would have collected material relating to the experiences of others and on this basis have drawn his own conclusions. And then, because of his religious and clerical allegiance, the result would have been a condemnation of these phenomena as the work of demons, of evil spirits. Thus the truth about occultism and spiritualism would not have emerged in the way that God desired, for then communications of the Light with humans—through the Youngest—would have been condemned likewise. This would have been yet another difficulty for God to consider.
God knew the return of Ardor was imminent, and upon consideration of the problem some years before the return had soon concluded that neither prelates nor theologians were suited for the forthcoming and difficult task. Thus an alternative had to be found, for not until prelates11 and theologians11 were presented with an accomplished fact would there be any possibility—and then only a remote one—that a work of clear and logical construction from beginning to end and bearing the stamp of truth could arouse their interest and understanding. But what alternative? God knew that no human individual during earthly life would be capable of fashioning a religious, ethical and philosophical work that would in all respects accord fully with the truth, even were the effort lent the utmost leadership and guidance of the discarnate Youngest. Such a task would demand more than could be accomplished by human beings and human thought. God therefore chose to cause the work to be created by “spiritual intelligences” from the transcendental world, and when all preparation for its appearance in the human world had been completed, to employ as co-worker the woman who had previously assisted Christ in his task with the Earth-bound spirits. Already then, God had foreseen that she would also be of assistance to Christ in delivering Ardor. And since, through the lengthy guidance12 given her by Christ and his helpers,12 she had come to know the difference between the true and the false in spiritualism, and had learned to follow in every way the leadership to which she had freely submitted, this was in God’s view the best, the proper solution to the problem.
Upon the return of Ardor, Toward the Light was consequently produced by discarnate spiritual intelligences according to God’s wish and under His overall leadership, but the material was composed in response to questions of humans on Earth.13 Ardor personally was entrusted the task of answering such questions as pertained directly to his own fall and that of the other Eldest, to their creation of the human body, to their opposition to God and the Youngest, and to their attempts to draw mankind deeper into Darkness and under their dominion, as well as conveying an account of Ardor’s own redemption and return. He was further asked to describe the dormant state of Darkness, the Light, primal Thought and primal Will, as far as this was possible. The remaining work was entrusted to Christ, to the “spiritual guide”14 of the female helper on Earth, and to others of the Youngest whom God had chosen to assist in this extensive and difficult task. Under this arrangement, the messages to be delivered to mankind would not suffer the shortcomings of the works of human minds but would be a work for which its transcendental creators could accept full responsibility both before God and before humanity. The task of the earthly helper was then to act as an interpreter, that is to say, through intuition to translate the thought-language of the transcendental intelligences into words that could be understood by human beings. Thus she was fully aware that nothing was due to her own ideas or opinions. She understood that she was to exclude her own self, that she was but a useful interpreter, an available translator. If for instance a written work on Earth is translated from one language into another, the translator would never place his or her name on the title page and claim authorship unless prepared to risk exposure as a fraud. Nor would anyone who interprets a speech delivered in a foreign language pose as its author. So it is in this case. The female interpreter and translator on Earth has no right to present herself as the “author” of Toward the Light, or of the other works presented through her. The responsibility for these “messages from the transcendental world” rests with all the spiritual intelligences who have created them according to the wish of, and under the guidance of God. But the shortcomings of a few passages in the Commentary in Toward the Light would have to be ascribed to the interpreter who, in her earthly existence, had no knowledge of the majority of the subjects presented and discussed. However, that part of the work was concluded successfully, bringing the result desired from the transcendental side15 so that all is in exact accord with the truth.
The foregoing should suffice to explain why God chose to entrust this earthly part of the work to a female helper rather than to a prelate or to a theologian.
A collection of literary works such as Greetings to Denmark, Toward the Light with its supplement of Questions and Answers 16 and The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road will not again be presented to mankind in this way, for the spiritual intelligences of the transcendental world are fully responsible only for these works. Therefore, this collection is and will remain unparalleled in human history!
Since God has limited His foreknowledge, how can many of the Youngest now be on Earth to speak17 for Toward the Light if God, at the time of their incarnation, knew not when Ardor would return?
From the first, the Youngest were incarnated amongst humanity with one great objective: to win back Ardor. Time and again God laid the plan for this work; time and again the Youngest were sent to the Earth by the thousands to work together according to God’s plans. But if the chosen Youngest failed their main objective, obviously the others would fail alike to carry out their part. So it was, for example, with Zarathustra, Jesus, Mani, Mohammed, Luther, Calvin and Zwingli. And the same for many others, before and after the times of these leaders. They failed the main objective: to win back Ardor. Consequently, their co-workers could not carry out their part as promised. In all cases where these historically well known figures could have won back Ardor, God had planned the work, and to ensure success all the Youngest who had pledged to lead or assist in the earthly world had vowed to God that they would be guided by their guardian spirits (conscience) during their incarnations. But God could not know if the work would succeed. Not until He saw that the individual entrusted the main task was unable to overcome the Darkness, was not able to pray for Ardor, did He know the attempt would have to be repeated and require new incarnations.
When Christ pledged to attempt the “Shorter Road” (Toward the Light, pages 94:6 to 97:3), many of the Youngest were embodied on Earth, both then and later, to lend support in order to obtain good results.
This time the prayer was said for Ardor, and in grief and with remorse he returned to God.
Since Toward the Light was produced as a natural consequence of his return,18 those Youngest who, before their present incarnations, had promised to be spokesmen should this work be successfully transmitted to the earthly world, must now keep their promise or assume the responsibility that follows from breaking it without good reason.
If the leaders of the Danish Church continue to reject Toward the Light, how can this work become the true religious foundation for the belief by humans in God?
God’s ways are many, but all lead to the same goal: a common acknowledgment by humanity of God as Father and Creator of the human spirit; a common acknowledgment of the origin and development of transcendental and earthly life; a common acknowledgment that the only true and right way to communicate with God the Father is through direct approach to Him in prayer and in thought, without intercession—whether through Christ, the “Mother of God”, the saints or others; a unanimous rejection of baptism as a precondition for salvation; and a unanimous rejection of Communion and all other Sacraments, and so on.
Even though the Danish clergy instead of advocating Toward the Light continue to repudiate its truths or seek to prevent its propagation, other ways exist to counter and finally end the false doctrines of the Church so as to make way for the true teachings.
Here is how this could happen:
Since the time, prehistorically, when humans had spiritually developed sufficiently to be able to conceive an interest in and an understanding of divine values, the discarnate Youngest have educated them about God and God’s relationship to mankind. This process has taken place at the time of learning for humans during their stays in the spheres. The teaching has been broad, without particular detail, yet sufficient to bring forth in the mind and thought of each human spirit while on Earth a yearning for God, a desire to strive for greater and clearer knowledge. This yearning was the basis upon which the incarnated Youngest should build during their earthly roles as religious founders or reformers. But, as so often noted, Ardor and the other Eldest with him employed every means at their command not only to lead the incarnate Youngest astray, but to distort, obscure and defile all that the Youngest taught. Yet even with all the distortions and falsehoods of Darkness, the human spirits retained their longing for God, their desire to strive for more knowledge and clarification. And this longing is the basis for all human religious needs and feelings
When finally Ardor was won back to God through the love and patience of Christ, the road was laid open for a true, common religious teaching for all mankind, for now Ardor—who had been the most formidable stumbling block—is removed forever. And when Toward the Light with the help of an interpreter was introduced to the earthly world, the discarnate Youngest who direct and instruct the human spirits in the various spheres were enjoined by God to henceforth not only give their pupils the usual broad outline of the relationship between God and mankind but also the details—to acquaint them fully with what is taught in Toward the Light. Thereafter, the human spirits born to life on Earth will not only carry in mind and thought a deeper yearning for God but will also possess a knowledge and clarity of thought that searches far beyond that which any religion yet developed and accepted by humans can offer. Sooner or later, then, and more or less consciously, they will react negatively to the various religious dogmas, doctrines and postulates taught in home, school, church or temple the world over. In particular, will they soon reject the distressing doctrines of Christianity and its various sects concerning Christ’s “death of atonement”, damnation and eternal suffering in an everlasting Hell, as well as the doctrines of Baptism, Communion and other Sacraments, and intercession by the “Mother of God” and by the saints. They will find all this irreconcilable with their religious feelings and their inmost yearning for God. As time passes and new generations grow up, the many and different leaders and authorities of Christendom throughout the world will face ever stronger opposition from the people collectively who cannot be satisfied with what is taught by the Church, because this teaching does not accord with the inmost feelings in the mind and thought of the individual. Slowly the teaching of the main body of Christianity and of the many older and newer denominations will disintegrate and finally end. And the message presented in Toward the Light will then be accepted with joy and gratitude, since it in every respect conforms to the deepest in the human spirit and is what the spirit longs to meet in life on Earth.
Those among the Danish people who now in mind or heart feel in accord with what is presented and taught in Toward the Light will also, in their own way and as best they can, pass on the knowledge and understanding of the work. This is taking place and will continue to take place, through writing and speaking and in discussions. In this way, more and more will be won to the eternal truths. However, all who unite under Toward the Light should remain in the Danish Church, for there is no intention to found a new sect but rather to let the thoughts and information of this Message penetrate and infuse the Danish Church, which through this work will slowly but inevitably meet with dissolution.
It goes without saying that had the leaders and authorities of the Danish Church understood the opportunity, at one stroke a meaningful and beautiful Church reformation would have come about and resounded far beyond the borders of the land, giving the Danish people an exceptional place in history. But this was not achieved; the clergy recognized not the call.
Yet the coming reformation may perhaps not be too distant, made possible instead by the demanding sentiment and will of the people, in which case, then, it will not be for the clergy to bear the palms of victory.
Whether the movement now begun—to reach agreement on a true, common and lasting foundation for humanity’s perception of God and the beyond—will succeed soon or not for a long time, cannot be said with certainty. It all depends on human individuals themselves, depends on whether they are disposed to accept or reject God’s Message.
However, this much can be said with certainty: Toward the Light now has a foothold in the human world; its thoughts and its messages can never disappear; for what has been given rests on the rock of truth and is borne forward by the wish of God and under His guidance.
Even should all the clergies of the world turn out in full to stop the advance of Toward the Light, they could never succeed. The work will nonetheless advance and its thoughts spread from person to person, for “the mills of God grind slowly but surely”. Nothing in the world can stop them!
Why are Mormonism, Theosophy, Christian Science and Anthroposophy not mentioned in Toward the Light? Each has many followers the world over.
Although neither these nor many other religious sects and denominations are identified in Toward the Light, Christ does say (Speech of Christ, page 122: 5) to the servants of God and the Church: “. . .to whichever nation, to whichever faith you may belong. . . “ He thus speaks to the leaders and teachers of all religious beliefs, and since the aforementioned movements are of comparatively recent origin, their role is of little significance in the astral world—in the six spheres surrounding the globe, that is, to which human spirits are brought after earthly death. Consequently, there was no particular reason to mention them separately.
These “modern” religions have been known among mankind for only a relatively short time and it takes many generations for the astral brain of the individual to pass down religious conceptions and memories from life on Earth before these can take firm root in the human spirit.
It is quite different with the ancient religions, such as Shintoism, Buddhism, Christianity (with its many offshoots) and Islam. Throughout the many centuries since these religions were introduced in the earthly world, generation after generation has identified with them. A firm foundation for them has been built not only on Earth but in the astral worlds of the human spirits—a foundation difficult to shake, however deficient and erroneous it may on many points be. Numerous generations—individual after individual—have during their lives on Earth adopted the dogmas, postulates and teachings of these religions concerning the divine and then through the astral brain20 have passed them on to their descendants, in whose astral brain20 these doctrines lie dormant until called forth, for example through religious influence in homes, schools or institutions. When the human spirit is released after bodily death, an individual spirit’s religious perception will therefore have been strengthened through the religious beliefs of the spirit’s earthly “forefathers”.
Because of the religious basis formed in this way in the memory of the human spirit, it is inexpressibly difficult for teachers and educators—the discarnate Youngest—in the schools and institutes of higher learning of the astral spheres to reason with these spirits, to explain to them the religious delusions they have lived by and believed in during their lives on Earth. The most difficult to influence are those who through many incarnations have embraced Christianity in its various main denominations and older sects, for they all more or less cling to the chief dogma of Christianity: salvation through belief in the death of atonement of Jesus. This false dogma has caused untold grief and suffering, since all who sincerely and in complete trust have accepted it will not be shaken from their firm belief that with his blood Jesus Christ has atoned for their guilt of sin. Only after repeated incarnations at places where the Islamic, Buddhist or still more ancient religions predominate, has it been possible to reason with the human spirits released at death and make them see the truth and justice in this single most important point in the upbringing of humanity: that what humans sin in the earthly world against God or against their fellow beings, they themselves must make full atonement for, or obtain forgiveness for, under the leadership of God. For Christ is not and never has been a sacrifice of atonement for mankind’s guilt of sin!
Thus, Toward the Light addresses itself primarily to the followers of the main religions, for even though Buddhists and Muslims, for instance, profess not the teaching of Christ’s death of atonement, their religions are still beset with so many misconceptions that they cannot form the true religious foundation upon which to determine the education and progress of humanity toward the Light and the Kingdom of God.
But it must never be forgotten that a few truths or glimpses of truth can be found in all the religious beliefs, be they ancient or recent.
However, the chaos that now prevails in the many different earthly religions (Question 13) will some day be superseded by the truths presented in Toward the Light, so that all mankind’s religious understanding and perception of God and the beyond can rest upon a common foundation. To be able to attain to this goal, the human spirits in the various spheres have been instructed on the basis of this material since the appearance on Earth of Toward the Light, and they are not again incarnated until fully acquainted with the religious truths of this work. Endowed with this knowledge, the new generations will ever more strongly reject the dogmas of the prevailing religions, and thus religious life will gradually—though perhaps very slowly—be guided onto the proper path, the path that leads directly to God, to His profound and boundless parental love.
Does the designation “The Shorter Road”21 apply to the road which Christ and the discarnated Youngest followed so as to deliver Ardor—Satan—as well as to the road to God through human forgiveness of Ardor?
Yes, it applies to both.
God showed Christ the road he and his helpers could follow so as to be able, through patient and intensive effort, to sooner deliver and return Ardor to God’s Kingdom. And since Christ fully succeeded in the task in this way,21 his victory has laid open a “shorter road” for all humanity, by which the individual human being can sooner attain the proper relationship with God as one of His children, namely by the road of forgiveness. For those who from deep within their hearts feel compassion for Ardor and are therefore fully able to forgive him, will at once understand that the belief in the death of atonement of Jesus is but a meaningless detour to God and the love of the Father.
Those who believe this detour is the one and only way will of course in every way insist that theirs is the right perception, since Jesus said: “I am the way!” To this there is but one answer: Christ taught nothing of “belief in the death of atonement”, nothing of the “Mystery of the Cross”, and never that his blood cleansed or redeemed the guilt of sin of human beings. All this was the later work of humans, springing from paganism and Darkness, and is far removed from truth and reality.
The sooner human beings abandon the quagmire of the longer detour and enter upon the solid ground of the Shorter Road, the sooner will they achieve the correct understanding of God and His relationship to humanity.
Is reincarnation really necessary? And how is the Law of Retribution applied?
The purpose of reincarnation is to allow human spirits to mature through a gradual and many-sided process to the point that they are able to reject the influence of Darkness in all circumstances of life.
When human spirits undergo their first earthly lives, their spiritual egos—represented by thought and will—are but comparable to the faintest spark of the Light. Their earliest lives on Earth are then little more than a form of passive existence—of becoming accustomed to the human condition. After having undergone some initial incarnations, the spiritual ego begins to react to the guidance of the conscience—the guardian spirit. But it should be obvious that those individuals who stand at a very low spiritual level possess not as sensitive a “conscience” as do those more spiritually advanced. And since the new and the very young spirits predominate in the lower human races, the “spiritual laws” whereby a “savage”, for example, is judged, cannot be equally applied to a member of a civilized society. Savages, embodying very young spirits, are not yet able to respect human life or property. They cannot be judged alike, spiritually, as those humans who, through spiritual and worldly upbringing, have been taught to respect such values but yet, possessing this greater inner depth, still kill and rob. Not until the ego learns to distinguish between “mine” and “thine” and comes to understand the value of human life is there accountability for those sinful actions of whose consequences the ego is then spiritually aware. For the slightest violation of conscience must result in penalty—the necessity to atone. When the ego is aware that a certain act must by nature bring penalty, then that individual of free will breaks the law in committing that act, and by abuse of that freedom becomes subject to the Law of Retribution and cannot evade the consequences. Only full repentance through prayer can bring the forgiveness of God, and only appeals to wronged fellow humans can bring the possibility of their forgiveness and thereby remove the need for severe repercussions.
Human sin can be divided into two chief categories:
1) Sin against God and against the divine within one’s self. Only God can forgive this, and with His forgiveness the guilt of such sin is annulled forever.
2) Sin against others. This is of course also sin against God, but in such instances forgiveness must also come from those wronged before the guilt can be annulled, even though the transgressor already be forgiven by God.
Forgiveness of sin against God or against the “holy”, the divine22 within one’s self, can be obtained while the transgressor yet lives on Earth, if the guilt is fully understood and there is full repentance of the base, evil and unlawful thoughts and actions involved. Belief in the death of atonement of Jesus alters in no way human guilt of sin, and gives no remission of sin to anyone.
If humans cannot admit or repent of sin and guilt during life on Earth they must do so after their mortal departure, since all human spirits are confronted upon awakening in the astral spheres with a recapitulation of their earthly acts. When finally they do repent, God’s forgiveness is immediate and the matter is closed. Atonement is unnecessary, for God’s qualities of mercy and compassion, manifested of His love, stand above the Law of Retribution. (Toward the Light, page 306: 3).
If humans sin against others and, while yet on Earth, admit to such deeds or designs—thus repenting in full—but then are denied forgiveness when they earnestly seek it of those they have wronged, they can be spared repercussion through the power of God’s love and compassion. However, they must in new lives on Earth carry out an act of love for those originally sinned against. But the moment one obtains forgiveness from a fellow human, guilt is annulled without call for future atonement, for human mercy and compassion also transcends the Law of Retribution.
Should anyone wrong another and admit not guilt nor seek forgiveness of the victim while both are yet on Earth, the transgressor will after death be confronted in the beyond with the wrongful act. Then the deed must be meditated upon until finally understanding of its sinful nature comes, and grief and remorse awaken. But often then it is too late to win the victim’s forgiveness. It happens perhaps that the victim does not return from life on Earth during the transgressor’s allotted period for rest and learning. Or the victim may belong in a higher Sphere barred to the transgressor. Or it may happen that the victim returns to the transgressor’s sphere but will not forgive. In such cases, the transgressor must submit to the full severity of the Law of Retribution and atone later on Earth, that is, endure the spiritual or physical suffering drawn to oneself. Through such experience the transgressor learns care so that, if ever again tempted to do similar wrong, it is easier to resist acting against the conscience.
The Youngest are also subject to the Law of Retribution, but they acknowledge their earthly sins much sooner than do humans. Consequently, repentance and forgiveness comes easier to the Youngest who thus mostly avoid the law’s consequences. Yet even in face of a transgressor’s deep remorse it can happen that the victim for a long time refuses to forgive, both in life on Earth and in the astral world. When that happens, the one who refuses forgiveness is incarnated without mission, without service as one of the pioneers of mankind—living as any ordinary human. The transgressor then serves as the guardian spirit during the wronged person’s subsequent incarnations until the wronged one has overcome all anger and hatred. For any who nurture hatred, who are irreconcilable, are of no use to God in the work of love that the Youngest are carrying out on behalf of mankind’s journey toward the Light.
Therefore, while they are yet on Earth all should seek to repent of their errors, of their sinful and criminal thoughts and acts, and in remorse ask forgiveness of God as well as of their fellow beings before their earthly lives close. Much grief and suffering will thereby be prevented. The guidance of the conscience should be heeded closely in all aspects of life, for the more the conscience is disregarded, the more difficult it becomes to follow its advice, its admonitions and its warnings. By yielding to their own desires, their own base inclinations, human beings increase the number of their incarnations.
There is one provision under the Law of Retribution none can avoid except the youngest of human spirits, not yet able to respond to their conscience. Applying to the spiritual ego of humans and the Youngest and Eldest alike, this provision requires that all who commit acts of murder or in some other way cause loss of life of fellow beings, must, in a subsequent incarnation, save from sudden death the same number of lives taken. (Toward the Light, page 114: 6.)
However, this provision can be applied in different ways. Those judged and penalized under earthly law have nothing more for which to atone. But since God’s law requires that those who kill must in later incarnations save lives, anyone already punished under earthly law will comply with this provision through an act of love, giving them the protection of God so that they emerge unharmed from the perilous task. Not so for those who have evaded earthly justice. They are protected neither by the guardian spirit nor by God during attempts to save other lives. They never escape some form of harm, such as death, maiming, prolonged illness, burns, or the like. In other words, they must atone for past crimes with their own lives or with bodily suffering. Thus God’s Law of Retribution can in certain cases require a life for a life; however, the earthly courts of law have not a similar right. (Speech of Christ, Toward the Light, page 125: 3.)
Those who as earthly rulers, military commanders, or leaders of the people are indirectly responsible for the loss of great numbers of lives during wars and uprisings or through death penalties, can expiate their guilt in subsequent incarnations by saving a large number of people from impending catastrophe, for example through action to avert man-made or natural disasters, as inventors making safe otherwise dangerous occupations, or as scientists who find ways to prevent or control the diseases that are such a scourge to mankind in so many ways. God Himself ensures through this provision the correct balance between the human lives lost and those lives that in compensation are to be saved from premature or painful death.
The last two means of atonement apply only to the Youngest and partly to the Eldest, since human spirits clearly possess not sufficient spiritual stability to be inventors or scientists in life on Earth.
Can Christians who according to the doctrines of the Church worship Christ as the second member of the Holy Trinity, be forgiven of sin through prayers to him?
They cannot! For what humans sin against God, only God23 can forgive. And for what humans sin against one another, they must seek to forgive one another. (Toward the Light, pages 101: 3.)
Christians who equate Christ with, or place him next to God, are not absolved of their sins merely by prayer to Christ. However, they can experience often a significant sense of relief should they express a deep remorse, for true remorse always attracts the Light to the repentant. Yet even then they will still feel as sinners in their relationship to God.
If, on the other hand, God’s own forgiveness comes to one who has turned to Him in grief and remorse, then all burden of sin at once vanishes. It is the same when humans forgive one another, for the love and compassion of God and of humans stand above the Law of Retribution.
If one believes the Law of Retribution may be the reason for the mental or physical suffering of a relative, friend or other, can prayer relieve such conditions since God’s compassion stands above the law?24
Those who under the Law of Retribution have brought upon themselves either spiritual or physical suffering, have forfeited God’s forgiving compassion by their failure to repent of their transgressions during the period allotted after each earthly life is ended,25 for God‘s compassionate forgiveness depends upon the human spirit’s grief and remorse.
As so often said, humans upon awaking in their dwellings in the spheres are confronted with their earthly errors and wrongdoings. But many, many who on Earth had adhered to one of the main Christian denominations, will neither meditate upon nor repent their wrongs. They invoke the atoning death of Jesus Christ, insisting all is forgiven and annulled through the Eucharist—the partaking of “the flesh and blood of Christ”. To reason with them is usually hopeless. Obstinately, unyieldingly they cling to the dogmas of the Church, even though many at times had doubted the reality of these dogmas during their incarnations. When these spirits will not repent in their insistence that Jesus has atoned for their sins, they obviously can neither obtain forgiveness from God or their fellow humans, as is necessary for the remission of all sin not atoned for under the Law of Retribution. Not until the return of such spirits from new incarnations26 during which they have suffered in order to atone for their guilt, do they comprehend that the death of Jesus Christ upon the cross was no death of atonement for the sins of humanity.
But the inquirer asks if anyone who believes another to be suffering under the Law of Retribution can by prayer to God cancel or at least relieve the suffering? No! Prayer to God will not terminate this punishment, not even if springing from the deepest love or compassion. For the individual who suffers thus would not repent in time and must now learn through the painful experience that obstinacy and defiance are of no avail, whereas grief and repentance will bring about the proper relationship with God. However, human prayer can also in these cases ease the suffering, for every prayer brings the power of the Light to the one for whom help is asked, and this can impart such spiritual strength that the sufferer will feel the pain less and be able to endure it with greater patience. But no human can during earthly life determine how helpful are such prayers of intercession, since none know how severe a “penalty of expiation” has been meted out in each case. Not until the life on Earth has ended does the intercessor learn how severe was the degree of the intended suffering and how much it was eased by the intercession. And so, those who see others suffering in any way should in love and compassion intercede for them with God. Likewise, prayer for the departed ought never be forgotten as it can bring the Light to a darkened mind and help overcome the obstinacy of a human spirit during the difficult time of self- searching.27
The belief in the death of atonement of Jesus and in the element of forgiveness in the Eucharist sits upon the Christian portion of humanity as a mighty curse. These false teachings, deriving from Ardor, have delayed and will for much time yet delay multitudes of humans in their journeying toward the distant Home of the Father. And the situation cannot improve as long as there are those among the teachers and leaders of the Church, as well as in the congregations, whose sermons and pronouncements give God prominence as the stern, avenging divinity whom humans dare only address in humble and trembling “fear of God”, nor for as long as Christians continue to regard Christ as the one who has atoned for the sins of mankind. Not until all teaching, all talk of this tyrannical, fickle and avenging “human god” has ceased forever, not until baptism has been rejected as a condition for “salvation” and the Eucharist and all other Sacraments acknowledged as meaningless, not until people cease to condemn others to “eternal torment” in an “eternal Hell”, not until then can those who profess the faith of the main Christian denominations and their various sects expect to make better progress on their toilsome journey. However—and this cannot be said too often—it is for each individual to make the decision whether to continue to follow the ancient, false dogmas and thereby delay28 the progress toward the Light and toward God, or to reject it all and turn to the truths that God has made known to mankind through Toward the Light and The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road—for God compels none to do that which is right, nor should anyone so compel their neighbor!
When humans pray for others who suffer and are unhappy, this attracts the Light and brings help to those prayed for. But then, do we not create injustice by bringing Light and help to some and not to others?
In his Speech, Christ says of prayer and its power: “. . .Be not selfish in your prayer. . .but pray for all human beings on Earth. And forget not those who at death are delivered from their earthly bodies!. . .”
Christ thus calls upon humans to advance enough in their compassion and love for others so as to include all in their prayer to God and ask help for those in need of it. Therefore, in prayer, keep in mind all who suffer, both spiritually and bodily; think of all who grieve, and of all law breakers. Forget none. Remember them all in your prayer, though this means not reciting numerous names. Rather, one should seek in prayer to include within the thought that portion of humanity which grieves and suffers. And if the desire to help those who suffer is sincere, is felt deeply, help will be forthcoming in one way or another even though the one who prays may not be aware of this29 while yet on Earth.
Christ not only urges human beings to be unselfish in prayer, he says he will speak for humanity—he will pray for those in need of his help. Out of his deep love, Christ takes upon his shoulders what humans in their selfishness, in their blindness and in their lack of compassion leave undone, or as something with which they wish not to concern themselves, or that they do not understand can be of any use. If people remember not others, he will remember them. He forgets none, not even the departed who so soon fade from the memory of the living.
Because of Christ’s love, therefore, no human being is excluded from the Light-giving power of prayer. And prayers by humans create no injustice.
Since prayer to the Christian “saints” is in vain (Toward the Light, page 84) and not heard by God, is prayer to pagan “gods” also in vain?
Those who worship many gods perceive their idols as representations of divinity. Many heathen peoples also believe—and especially in the past did believe—that a part of the divine soul, or the spirit, dwells within the “image”, imbuing it with life. Though they be idolators, yet worshipers of many gods often find it easier through prayer—however childish—to meet with God and His Thought, because their idols or images represent the “Great Spirit”, the deity (father, creator and ruler) who they believe to be the guide and leader and to whom they turn in prayer.
Since most saint-worshippers pray directly to individual saints rather than asking them to intercede with God, and since the “saint”, so-called, has no existence in the manner understood by Catholic believers, they in fact pray to entirely imaginary beings. The “Great Spirit”, or deity, “behind” a heathenish idol, does not exist “behind” a saint’s image. Saint-worshippers are often much further removed from the divine than heathens. But if humans regard their saint as but a link between themselves and God, and consciously or from within discern the Divinity behind the saint, the prayer will reach God—otherwise not. They pray not then to an imaginary saint but to the Divinity. It is vital that prayer to God, under whatever name, springs from a trusting heart, for there are of course “idolators” who pray to their idols and images in the same superficial manner as many Catholics pray to their saints.
When we pray, why does God not always answer? Do we not pray enough on each matter? Should we be more persistent? (New Testament, Luke, 11: 5-9.)
It is well known that at the time of Jesus it was common to speak in parables. Therefore, some parables ascribed to Jesus originated not with him but were well known among the people. The parable in Luke 11: 5-8 came not from Jesus, and cannot be considered here as if it did, especially since it expresses merely human thought and action. The words of verse 9 do, however, originate with Jesus but are inserted and applied where they do not belong.
Jesus never suggested that humans should pray persistently, or for any given number of times on a single matter in hope of wearying God by their incessant pleas and getting Him to temper justice with “mercy”. These notions stem not from Jesus but from the Evangelists. (Neither did the parable in Luke, chapter 18, verses 1 to 8, originate with Jesus.)
God does not grant human prayer in every instance because, 1) many pray mechanically, thoughtlessly; 2) many pray not in trust that they will be heard or helped; 3) many pray for help to avenge insults and defeats; 4) many pray when they are able to help themselves and do not need God’s help; 5) many make their “prayer” a demand. Such approaches are useless. They are not heard by God. Prayer should be uttered in trust that God will grant His help at the proper time and in the proper manner, and that He will only help if He deems it necessary. (Speech of Christ, Toward the Light, pages 117: 3 to 119.)
Consider also that the present earthly life of a human spirit is always based on that spirit’s previous lives. For this reason and because of the retribution30 humans bring upon themselves, God often cannot and will not change the prevailing state. In such instances, humans must endure life’s griefs and hardships, difficult as they may be; for they must remember that they are always in one way or another to blame for their lives developing as they do. But those who in complete trust in God’s guidance, love and justice turn to Him for help in finding their way out of difficult and oppressive situations, or in finding solutions to complex problems, will always receive the needed help, the necessary strength.
Therefore, even if people pray for help as they want it and it comes differently than desired or expected, it will nevertheless come about that God always chooses to grant His help in the way that He knows is best and proper.
(Page references apply to the 1979 edition.)
1 twice) Toward the Light, pages 94-98.
2) Some Psychic Experiences, pages 36 to 39.
3) Swedenborgianism, among others.
4) Greetings to Denmark is not included here since it is a special gift to the Danish people.
5) Toward the Light, page 244: 1, and Question 2, First Supplement.
6) These can also be due to negative and positive attractions and discharges of Darkness.
7) Toward the Light, page 293: 2.
8) Toward the Light, page 322: 1.
9) Before the return of Ardor to God, the influence of Darkness was due mainly to his guidance and that of the other discarnate Eldest.
10) See also Question 2.
11 twice) Among the clergy are a number who before their present incarnation had pledged to God to speak in support of any book about Ardor and his acts, were it possible to produce this in the human world. See The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road, pages 29-31.
12 twice) See Some Psychic Experiences, wherein this guidance is described.
13) Postscript to Toward the Light.
14) Postscript to Toward the Light.
15) Postscript to Toward the Light.
16) It is possible a second Supplement will be forthcoming if sufficient questions are asked while the female helper yet lives on Earth.
17) The Doctrine of Atonement and The Shorter Road, pages 29-31.
18) See Questions 11 and 68 in this Supplement.
19) The answer to question 13 pertains only to the religious part of Toward the Light.
20 twice) See Toward the Light, page 274: 1 to 281: 2, regarding the interactions between the astral, psychic and physical brains.
21 twice) Toward the Light, page 94:6 to 97:3.
22) See Question 42.
23) See answer to Question 16.
24) Toward the Light, page 306: 3.
25) Toward the Light, 186 and Question 16 in this Supplement.
26) Such an incarnation is exceptional, however. See Toward the Light, page 113: 2, regarding human repentance.
27) Speech of Christ, Toward the Light, page 118: 5.
28) Speech of God’s Servant, Toward the Light, page 135: 13 to page 137: 1.
29) See Question 18.
30) See Question 18.