Toward the Light
Questions & Answers
An Addendum to Toward the Light
“Before attacking the Church’s Doctrine of Atonement, should one not consider all its merits?”50
In the Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road, Paul is recorded as saying (page 22: 1, line 2): “Upon my return, our Father bade me remove the cornerstone from under the House that you, the human beings, have built upon my arbitrary interpretation of the death of Jesus of Nazareth.”
Our God and Father has thus enjoined Paul to remove the cornerstone, the foundation that he laid, and upon which the Church has built further with its doctrine of the atoning death of Jesus. It was thus not Paul’s task to expose the erroneous Church dogma but rather to show the error of his own teaching—the cornerstone—and this he has done with all possible clarity and authority. The clergy themselves must demolish the Church dogma with all its embellishments and presumed “higher ethics.”
It should be understandable to all that when the first step of a longer calculation is wrong, the final result cannot possibly be correct. Obviously also, if the cornerstone is badly flawed and cracked it is useless as a foundation on which to build. Sooner or later it will crumble—and the house come tumbling down.
But let us look again at The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road (pages 15-17). Paul is at the point in his investigation of the doctrine where it must be determined if Jehovah, the deity of the Jewish people, could have sent Jesus to humanity to offer himself once for all as a pure and unblemished sacrifice.
To determine this, Paul had to draw a comparison between Jehovah’s action and human conditions: the father who in his human anger demands corporal punishment for his wicked and disobedient children, which is indeed a fitting parallel to Jehovah. The father in the parable acts toward his children as Jehovah, according to the Old Testament, acted toward the Jewish people time and again; that is, he chastised them with his wrath. Paul demonstrates through this parable that if Jehovah had demanded the sacrificial death of Jesus, he would have been guilty of an act that placed him beneath the level of humans. Paul therefore concludes that Jehovah could not have sent Jesus with the intention that he accept punishment for the sins of others. And since Jehovah could not have sent Jesus upon such a mission, Paul concludes correctly that neither could the God and Father of whom Jesus himself speaks—the God Who is far above Jehovah—possibly be the originator of such a mission. God must have had other reasons for a mission requiring His beloved son to live on Earth among humans—and Paul then draws a brief outline of God’s purpose for the mission of Jesus. (Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road, page 19.)
Paul criticizes his own teaching, including the parable, from today’s point of view in order to show how reprehensible it is for the Church to have continued to build on his doctrine of atonement rather than take distance from it—as the Church should have done long ago—as something entirely unworthy of God.
By refuting his own doctrine so completely, Paul has removed the cornerstone from under the Atonement Doctrine of the Church. But no one has demanded that he also remove the ornamentation and the embellishments with which the clergy have adorned it over the years. This is entirely the task of the clergy (Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road, pages 21-22). But once the cornerstone is removed from under the “House”, the structure has become so undermined that the adornment becomes worthless. The “House” will fall, sooner or later, for the sum total of the calculation is wrong because the first calculation, Paul’s calculation, was wrong!
In his criticism of the doctrine of atonement, Paul makes no mention of how the religious conceptions of the Jewish people, and thereby his own, had been influenced by the religions of neighboring “pagan” peoples. When Paul conceived the doctrine of atonement, he was a true child of the people and of his time and did not distinguish between his own thoughts and the influence of other people’s religious perceptions of the divine, of the beyond. Therefore, it rests not with him to account for these relationships, especially since others, by critical study of the Bible, can point out, and have indeed pointed out, characteristics and similarities with other religions of his time.
“It is of course indisputable that human beings gave Jesus death. But it is quite without foundation to say we now put the blame on God and that we have invented the Doctrine of Atonement for that purpose.” What comment can be made on this extract from a letter?
As explained in the reply to Question 56, Paul was the originator of the Doctrine of Atonement. But through the ages the clergy have in various ways built further upon Paul’s foundation so as to make the doctrine appear more ethical and more worthy of God, according to human perceptions. It would therefore be quite inconceivable to the laity if the Church should now maintain that Jesus was delivered to die by human beings without this death being pre-ordained by God, for then the death of Jesus could not have been a death of atonement. Should the clergy recognize that the death of Jesus must be solely attributed to humans, all teaching—ethical or otherwise—of the atonement death of Jesus, must at once collapse. For in that case, Jesus could not have torn down the divine wall of sin that was raised between God and mankind at the downfall of First Man (Biblically speaking) and no human could then enter Paradise “in the fold” of Jesus, cleansed or protected by his “innocent blood.”
It cannot be denied that “belief” in Jesus as Savior and Redeemer has over time brought forth many fine, true and genuine feelings in a not inconsiderable part of humanity, nor can it be denied that the Doctrine of Atonement has been accepted as the full truth by many while they lived on Earth. But what do people benefit by living on Earth under misconceptions and misunderstandings as to the nature of God and of the beyond? Great numbers of Christians have had to acknowledge, in grief and despair, after earthly death, that the road to “Paradise” is infinitely long and difficult; and they have had to acknowledge that only they can atone for what they have sinned, and that they must in a new life on Earth rectify their wrongs. They must acknowledge that “belief” in Jesus as Savior and Redeemer has neither sanctified nor justified them, nor has it brought them to their goal—Paradise. But it is precisely all these sorrows and spiritual sufferings in the beyond that Paul and the Youngest, who have contributed to the appearance in the human world of Toward the Light and The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road have sought to spare the humans in future. And now that Ardor—Satan—has returned to God, it is in the hands of human beings themselves whether they will accept, understand and be guided by the truths presented to all mankind through these works; for those who will accept this guidance will be spared much grief, will be spared much spiritual suffering.
Can the fact be explained that many religions of ancient times, like Christianity, are based on a “divine trinity”? Is there anything occult back of this?
Yes, occult memories lie back of such a “trinity” in various religions.
Those of the Youngest whose mission in life on Earth was to bring humanity knowledge of God, of His nature, of His relationship to humans, and further to teach about life in the spiritual worlds, found it exceedingly difficult from the oldest times to make their messages conform fully with the eternal truths. Ardor and the discarnate Eldest strived ever to prevent the incarnated Youngest from properly fulfilling their mission, doing so partly by enshrouding them in accumulations of Darkness that prevented their free thoughts from developing in the direction given by God, and also by inciting in them false and misleading thoughts. Similarly, the incarnated Eldest have in various ways had a disturbing, destructive and misleading influence by distorting that which the Youngest taught mankind in the field of religion.
The occult basis for a “divine trinity” is the veiled memory of the Youngest, while incarnate, of God as the Creator and Father, Whose nature embodied both the male and the female primal principle, and their memory of the eldest of the Youngest, who was their leader in the beyond.
Through the many thousands of years that have passed since the concept of a divine trinity first gained acceptance in the world of human “belief”, it has formed a basis that has been built upon again and again, either in parallel or diverging steps. Time after time—incarnation after incarnation—have the incarnated Youngest tried to bring mankind a completely truthful teaching of God and the divine. But all their efforts remained more or less unsuccessful until the time of Ardor’s return to God. The Jewish and the Muslim peoples, both with their monotheistic concept of deity, have on that point come closest to the truth, although their understanding of the nature of God and of His relationship to mankind, and their conception of the beyond, as well as other concepts, are marked by human delusions.
Thus behind the various religions, which from the earliest times have built, and are still building upon a “triune god”, lies the memory of God’s nature and of life in the beyond. These memories have by Ardor and his emissaries been drawn downwards into Darkness, have been distorted and perverted.
How did the idea of a Messiah chosen by God arise?
It arose through the occult memories of the Youngest, since many of the Youngest incarnated to life on Earth had a faint remembrance of their loving, faithful and untiring leader—the eldest of the Youngest, Christ. They retained memory of him who had been chosen by God51 to lead them in their work for mankind’s journey toward the Light. They retained a faint memory of the radiant, shining figure who, from time to time, at long intervals, became embodied in human form so as to teach his fellow beings love for God and for neighbor. And during their earthly lives, when the yearning for the Heavenly Home, the yearning for their beloved brother and leader became too strong, they spoke to their fellow beings of him who should one day come, spoke of him whom God had chosen to be Lord and King52 of the ”Heavens” and ruler over all the Kingdoms of the Earth.
But Ardor succeeded also in distorting and perverting this beautiful memory—the truth that lay behind the thoughts and words of the incarnated Youngest. And thus the doctrine of “Atonement” and the doctrine of the “Kingdom”53 of Jesus became the visible manifestation of Darkness, originating with a truth of the Light.
No human spirit can come into God’s immediate presence without being absorbed into Him (Toward the Light, page 334), thus requiring that Christ act as the Father’s representative to human beings. Does this mean that God cannot visit the Earth?
Because of His absolute capacity for self-limitation, God can be present on the Earth’s stratum whenever He may wish and remain there as long as desired. By His Thought and Will, He limits the Light radiating from His Being so as to harmonize with the emissions of Light present where ever he wishes to be, for no human spirit, no human being, can remain in the proximity of God when His radiations of Light are at their full intensity. If God is on the Earth’s stratum and wishes to be near a human individual, He creates by His Thought and Will a “dividing wall” between Himself and that person, first reducing the intensity of His own radiations of Light. The substance of this wall corresponds, on the side facing the human individual, exactly to the degree of intensity inherent in the radiations of Light or Darkness emitted by that individual’s personality, while the side turned toward God has a radiation of Light corresponding to the reduced radiation emitted from God’s personality at the moment. An imperceptible transition is thus established, ranging often from the emissions of Darkness to the subdued radiations of Light from God.
If it could be imagined that God Himself had assumed the leadership of mankind instead of entrusting this to Christ, He would have had to establish an abode in the outermost sphere around the Earth and would have had to stay there with His twelve Servants. But then it would have been necessary for God not only to reduce his own radiations of Light but also those of His Servants, so that the Earth and the spheres should not be absorbed by the intense radiations of the sea of Light issuing from them all. The discarnate Youngest would obviously also have occupied the same sphere with God. But if God had arranged thus, His Kingdom would have stood empty, and although the Youngest could have sojourned there from time to time between incarnations, they would not have been able to receive the help—through God’s radiation of Light necessary for new incarnations. For God’s full strength of Light would not have been present where it was needed. The zeal and capacity for work of the Youngest would have gradually declined over time rather than increased—and their work on behalf of humanity would have become hopeless and impossible to carry out.
God is, however, the Supreme Leader, although Christ is responsible for the more direct leadership of the human beings on Earth and of the human spirits in the spheres. By this arrangement, God can abide in His Kingdom together with His Servants, and there they can all unleash the full strength of their radiance in a sea of Light of utmost purity and beauty. But though God’s true abode is His Kingdom, He is still able to visit the Earth whenever His presence there may be necessary.
It seems quite inconceivable that God has not existed through eternity!
God has of course existed through eternity, but for untold “eternities” He was “Thought and Will”—an impersonal “something.” God arose as a personal Being upon the absolute union of the divine Thought and Will. But He has had existence through eternity. (Toward the Light, pages 3-4 and 159 to 180: 2.)
Did the natural laws apply to God while yet in an impersonal state, that is, during His process of development?
All natural laws54 have their origin in the Thought and Will of God. But it was first necessary for God Himself to gain complete knowledge of all the hidden properties of the so-called “Darkness” before He could give laws that would bring this primal power under full control; and this was something that could be achieved only through self-experience. While God was yet Thought and Will, and Thought and Will had not been equalized nor united in an inseparable whole (so that the Thought did not desire what the Will was not able to fulfill), He was not the absolute master over Darkness and could not arise as a personal Being—arise as the Almighty, Who by His Thought and Will had overcome the evil that was in the Darkness.
The existence of a personal God as Thought and Will is therefore the development that the divine male and female primal principles had to undergo in order to emerge as a unified, balanced and consummate “Divine Being”. Thus, the natural laws—in this case the spiritual laws—are the result of the struggle of the Divinity out of Darkness, a struggle that ultimately brought forth the personal God, a Being of universal knowledge and universal power.
Just as God had to struggle out of Darkness in order to become a personal being, so must human beings struggle out of Darkness to become integrated beings. And in order to bring this struggle to its conclusion, they must be incarnated time and again into the Darkness of life on Earth until final victory.
Since the human spiritual ego originates in and with God, humans carry within themselves a reflection of those laws under which their development takes place. These laws that have been given by God but that existed not whilst He Himself strove toward victory, serve to ease the way for human spirits in their struggle out of Darkness.
By nature, human beings differ highly from one another, due among other things to the longer or shorter development of their spiritual egos through the ages. Thus there are individuals rich in thought and emotion but with weak and ineffective wills, while others are the opposite, their power of will dominant while their thoughts and emotions are of limited development. And between the two extremes are innumerable variations in degree of strength and differences in manifestation of the human thought and will. Rarely can be found on Earth those whose thoughts and emotions are in complete balance with the will—whose thoughts are under the control of the will, embracing also the sorrows and happiness of others; indeed, whose thoughts and will are so balanced by their actions that they are able to give help and happiness to others, not only within their own sphere of activities but also outwardly to all mankind. But in order to arrive at the ideal of so strong and highly-evolved a personality, the spiritual ego must have lived through many incarnations, in other words have undergone a very long development. Only those who have experienced spiritual and physical suffering to the full are able to give help to others out of a true feeling of love and compassion. Only those who have personally struggled through the grief, sin, evil, poverty, suffering and the misery of many lives on Earth, can have the full loving understanding of the sufferings of their fellow humans. For only through their own struggles, their own victories, will humans become capable of understanding their fellow beings and of rendering the help needed out of a loving heart.
Once it is understood that only through self-discovery and self-experience can the individual attain to self-control, will it also be understood that He, the Highest of all Beings—the Divinity whence the human spirit sprang—must have personal knowledge of all that the human spirit must endure in life on Earth. It will be understood that He, Who knows all, must also Himself have struggled through Darkness toward the Light, must also have striven toward the full union of Thought and Will in order to emerge as the absolute Victor, as the All-knowing, the Almighty. Through His struggle out of Darkness, God has gained full understanding of the grief and suffering that human beings may meet in life on Earth. He has gained knowledge of the sins and temptations to which humans succumb, so that He, from His absolute knowledge, can respond to every human prayer for help with the most profound understanding, compassion and love.
Therefore, through the struggle out of Darkness by divine Thought and Will, God had gained such knowledge of the many and various manifestations of Darkness when He arose as a personal Being that, apart from being the Sovereign Master, He also was and still can be the loving, understanding and compassionate Father, Who out of His loving Thought and through His strong Will is in every way able to help all His children to gain victory in the long and bitter struggle out of the temptations and pitfalls of Darkness.
If God is a personal Being and the loving Father of the human spirit, why then is human life so full of suffering, disastrous accidents, crimes, wars and all kinds of horror? Why does not God intervene to prevent such happenings? Is He not almighty?
Mankind owes its existence on Earth to God’s fallen children, the “Eldest”, as explained in Toward the Light. As the Earth is a world of Darkness and therefore subject to the natural laws55 to be found within the primal power called Darkness, the suffering and horror and accidents resulting from natural disasters cannot be prevented. Such catastrophes will not cease as long as the globe exists. But since Darkness will diminish significantly over the coming millions of years, natural catastrophes will gradually become fewer and less violent as Darkness is eliminated. But not for many ages will this become noticeable in the earthly world.
If humans were less foolhardy, natural disasters would not claim nearly as many victims as at present. Why build houses and towns on the slopes of, or in the vicinity of active volcanoes? Why put houses and towns on low-lying riverbanks or on small, low-lying islands without protection against flooding by storm or sudden thaw, and so on? In such matters, people still have much to learn.
Much of the suffering, sorrow and disaster that in so many ways casts a shadow over human life on Earth is of humanity’s own making. Much grief and many accidents could be avoided if people would ever be mindful that every individual carries a great responsibility in life—a responsibility none can evade when the account of the individual’s life on Earth must be rendered to God after death.
Some examples from everyday life may help illustrate the matter:
1) A mother leaves her infant or young children unsupervised at home. The children find some matches. The curtains, their clothes or other articles catch fire and the children die before help arrives. Imagine the grief and horror of the negligent mother or both parents! And how often has God not been denounced in such occurrences? But who is guilty, who is responsible? The guilt and the responsibility rests with those who left the children alone.
2) Children roam streets, roads and parks, unsupervised, exposed to traffic or to the danger of drowning in marshes, ponds, lakes, etc. Who is guilty, who is responsible if accidents occur? The guilt and the responsibility rests on those who leave these children to fend for themselves.56 Such misfortunes would not occur if humans were aware of their full responsibility.
3) A third example from daily life: Two trains collide, many lose their lives, many are maimed. Who is guilty, who bears the responsibility? The guilt and the responsibility rests on those who overlooked the stop signals, or with whoever neglected to set the signal. But if they were aware of their full responsibility, such accidents would not occur.57
4) The carelessness shown by many drivers of motor vehicles similarly brings accidents, suffering, maiming and death. Who is guilty? The drivers! If they were all aware of their full responsibility, far greater care would be exercised.58
5) And what sufferings and horrors follow in the wake of war! But who is guilty, and who bears the responsibility? Again, humans are themselves to blame, and again humans are fully responsible. It is taught in plain words in Toward the Light that all warfare is contrary to the laws of God. And not until all have learned the true meaning of the ancient commandment, “Thou shalt not kill!”, can earthly conditions, as far as war is concerned, improve.
But the question was: Why does God allow all this to happen, rather than intervene and prevent it? There is but one answer: God is the Father and Mentor of the human spirit, but He brings up His children so that they will gradually learn fully to understand their responsibility both toward Him and toward their fellow human beings. God does not hold His children by the hand forever, for then they would never mature spiritually. Were God to intervene and prevent all untoward occurrences, humans would never change, would never learn the full meaning of responsibility. It is therefore the task of humans themselves to ensure that the importance of responsibility is learned and understood. And this the children and the younger generation should learn through the education given them by parents and in schools and institutions.
But even though God prevents not human disasters, He helps in many ways by letting the guardian spirits give warning to both those on the verge of causing disasters and to those who might innocently be exposed to same. Many people can testify that a sudden impulse inspired them not to take a certain train, ship or other means of transportation, thereby escaping possible injury or impending death. However, most people fail to follow such impulses or to heed their guardian spirit, so that they must share in the responsibility for their own death, maiming or suffering, although it lessens not the guilt of the person chiefly responsible for the disaster.
Where disaster is the result of Ardor’s ether-recordings (Toward the Light, page 253: 5 and 254: 1), a warning will always be given through the guardian spirit to any who might be exposed to danger. But if disasters are due only to thoughtless, foolhardy, careless, forgetful or malicious people, not even God can know when, where or how possible accidents may take place, because of the human free will. But in such cases, the guardian spirit will also attempt a “call” of warning to whoever is responsible, that is to say, evoke a sudden impulse to be cautious. Many can testify to such an experience, if they will. (Also see Toward the Light, page 300: 1,2 and page 252: 3-4.)
God is a personal Being, God is the loving Father of the Human Spirit, and God is Almighty. He tries by every possible means to bring up His children with full justice to all, and with profound love for all. But He acts not against His own laws, acts not against human free will for good or evil—the free will that God has given every human being, and which, for a time and in many ways, limits His omniscience and therefore His omnipotence.
The possibility is mentioned (Toward the Light, page 160) that primal Thought and primal Will might have been attracted and united under the influence of Darkness, and that the being who would have arisen would have been the direct opposite of God. Can it be explained how a cosmos of Darkness would have evolved under such a being?
Only God can fully answer this, but probably it will not be answered in every detail until all human spirits are gathered in God’s Kingdom and wish to know the answer.
However, anyone is free to attempt an explanation on the basis of what Toward the Light teaches of the powers and properties of Darkness and of the Light.
Should one imagine, then, that primal Thought and primal Will met and became united under the influence of Darkness and that this resulted in a Deity of Darkness—an absolute opposite of the God of Light whom we59 know, love and revere—the following facts must first be considered: 1) that the Deity of Darkness, despite his power, would be incapable of destroying the primal Light, since this embodies and still embodies eternal life; 2) that the primal Light would therefore remain in its place, as a core in primal Darkness; 3) that the Deity of Darkness would be able to create from Darkness but not from the Light, since He could have no knowledge of the properties of the Light, inasmuch as primal Thought and primal Will before becoming united60 had existed only in Darkness and not in the Light; 4) that the beings, objects, globes and worlds which the Deity of Darkness might create would be perishable, since death or extinction was and is inherent in the Darkness; and 5) that he, even though his ability to survive could be extended through countless eons, would ultimately disintegrate and become extinct, because the life of Darkness is not everlasting.
One could imagine two possibilities for the development of life in a cosmos of Darkness:
1) The Deity would to a certain extent be able to control the Darkness, but since Darkness is inherently chaotic, nothing but chaos would result from his efforts, his undertakings and his reign. He would probably have created children in his own likeness—dreadful creatures endowed with all the ferocity, malevolence and hideousness of Darkness and worse than the worst of the fallen Eldest. The Deity would war incessantly with his creatures, because evil and hatred would dominate the dealings between them. Love, compassion and mercy would be concepts quite incomprehensible, indeed quite unknown to all of them. “Thought” would stand against “thoughts”, “Will” against “wills”; for the Deity would never have attained complete control over his children’s insatiable greed for power, since having created beings of thought and will, he had thereby weakened his own thought and will. And as the eternal, inexhaustible radiations of Light would lie beyond his reach, there could be no prospect for him of renewing the energy of his own thought and will in order to assert himself over his children.
Thus it is conceivable that the many evil wills would ultimately emerge victorious over the Deity whose will had been weakened through his own acts of creation. And once his children had gained dominance, his dissolution and end would be inevitable. The many who had defeated the one would then continue struggling for power, for they would obviously all desire to be the first, the uppermost, and none would yield, none submit. And this struggle would continue until all had ceased to exist as personal beings, for the last, the lone survivor on the scene of battle, would not long enjoy any sense of victory, for he would surely be disrupted and dissolved by the boundless evil and ferocity of his “thought” and “will” of Darkness, which would have absorbed and assimilated the “thoughts” and “wills” of all the annihilated beings of Darkness—fragments of primal Thought and primal Will. But with the disintegration of the last remaining living being of Darkness, one of the following possibilities could be conjectured:
a) The disintegration and end of the personal being would also cause his thought and will to split, dissolve and absorb into the Darkness. In the process, the Darkness would simultaneously be depolarized, reverting it to its original dormancy and, as such, continuing to exist eternally with the Light (also dormant), with no prospect of ever being polarized again, since primal Thought and primal Will had been annihilated.
b) At the moment the thought and will split, the disruption would be so powerful as to render the Darkness unable to dissolve and absorb primal Thought and primal Will. These would therefore revert together with the depolarized Darkness to the same dormant state as that in which the Light reposed, and after countless eons of rest would be ready for renewed activity with either the Darkness or the Light, according to how primal Thought and primal Will were influenced by the radiations of the two mutually opposing forces.
2) Or there might be the following possibility of a cosmos of Darkness:
Imagine that some of the creatures of the Deity of Darkness would, out of curiosity, experiment with the Light—the core in the Darkness. But once they had come under the purifying, regulating and harmonizing influence of the Light, their personalities of Darkness would slowly undergo a change until, gradually, over eons, they would be completely transformed into personalities of Light. And once these beings had lost all contact with Darkness, the Light would become their true eternal home and kingdom.
Contemplate further the possibility that one of these beings of Light would probe deeper than the others in exploring the characteristics and properties of the Light and that as a consequence of his superior knowledge, power and authority, he would inevitably become the uppermost, the leader, whom all others would voluntarily love, follow and revere because of the regulating and harmonizing influence of Light. Once this Deity of Light felt and understood his power, and was conscious to the full that he was master of the Light, he would most likely turn to the Darkness and explore its powers and properties. And then he would find the beings of the Darkness, the beings who together with their Deity had remained in the Kingdom of Darkness. In the course of their strife with one another, nourished by hatred and greed for power, they would all have probably quite forgotten the fellow beings who had apparently been absorbed into the Light. These beings of Darkness would be utterly mystified by the Being of Light who now searched them out in their kingdom. But since the Deity of Light would soon come to realize that the inhabitants of Darkness could be assimilated neither with him nor with the other beings of Light, he would presumably initiate a struggle against the Deity of Darkness and his creatures. And the Deity of Light would then of necessity emerge the victor.
But it is open to question whether he would win because of the understanding he would have by then achieved of the all-conquering power of love, or because of the strength of the Light. If the first, the inhabitants of Darkness would, after countless eons under his influence and guidance, be purified and transformed into beings of Light, and so be received into his kingdom of Light. If the second, he would, by his mighty strength of thought and will, dissolve and obliterate them all.
Was there actually a “Hell”? If so, is it now annihilated?
Hell—the “ruined kingdom” around the Earth—did actually exist in the transcendental world, but by the power of God’s Will it has now been removed forever.61
But it had never been God’s intention to punish His disobedient and recalcitrant children by banishing them to a “hell”. It was the discarnate Eldest, who dwelt in the “ruined kingdom”, where by the power of their evil thought and will they bound sinful human spirits as their slaves and servants in this realm of Darkness. And these sin-bound human spirits were often held there for centuries—even millennia—before the Youngest succeeded in bringing them help and deliverance.
Now that the ruined kingdom is no more, neither human spirits nor any of the Eldest dwell in an actual Hell. But if on Earth they sin gravely against God or against other humans and while there fail to seek forgiveness, they do suffer “the torments of hell” in their consciousness of sin, until grief and remorse come to temper their minds. During this difficult self-searching, the sinful spirit is to all appearances alone in the sphere-home, for none who went before, neither relative nor friend, is permitted there. But even in this apparent solitude God provides help, for the spirits of Light will often be near to speak to the lonely one. Invisible, however, to sin-bound human spirits, the sinner hears them only as humans on Earth hear their “conscience”. The sinners do not know help has come in their hour of need until grief and remorse set in. Then the helper who faithfully and lovingly had watched over them, becomes visible to them.
Why does Toward the Light denounce the Book of Revelation (the Apocalypse) as inspired by Ardor—Satan? Are there no truths of the Light, for example, in the letters to the various congregations?
The Apocalypse has absolutely nothing to do with the truths of the Light. It was produced through Ardor’s inspiration and through his ether-recordings, read intuitively by the human author of the message who is not identical with John, the apostle. The Apocalypse also contains a number of reminiscences of “visions” of the Old Prophets. Neither do the letters to the various congregations originate with God or with the spirits of Light. They are a mixture of Ardor’s inspiration and pure fantasy by the author.
The entire book is a grotesque, misleading document of Darkness, a collection of fabrications, many rooted in the deepest paganism. And regardless of all human speculation and interpretation of its many prophecies, this will certainly not make them into eternal truths of the Light.
“Revelation” is the big, fanciful, mysterious fairy tale book of Christians, and not until the people who are spellbound by this book have progressed beyond their spiritual infancy will it loosen its hold on the human mind. Children “love” fairy tales, no matter how gory, how gruesome or senseless they may be. To most children the fairy-tale adventures are truths to which they return again and again. But when childhood is behind, these once admired and “beloved” stories are seen for what they are—fairy tales only, and nothing more.
The Apocalypse is thus a test of the maturity of the human spirit. Those who within themselves abhor and shun this work have passed from spiritual childhood. But those who really believe they can find in the Apocalypse beauty and divine truth are, spiritually, like young children, equally pleased by a glittering bracelet whether imitation or of the purest gold. There are also Christians, unfortunately, repelled inwardly by the Apocalypse, yet outwardly embracing it as authentic. Such people bear the heaviest of responsibility, as does Luther for his inclusion of the Apocalypse in the New Testament while lacking any appreciation for the work.
While reading the so-called “Revelation of St. John the Divine”, Christians should think of the fairy tale of “The Emperor’s New Clothes”, for this work is but an empty weave of figments of the mind, whose warp is the hideous, false and perverted imaginings of Darkness and whose weft is human fantasy.
Why does God not eliminate the ether-recordings of Ardor, to stop them from becoming reality on the Earth’s stratum? Much disaster and suffering could surely be prevented.
To explain why the ether-recordings remain, even though their author, Ardor, now wishes they were gone, we must draw an analogy with a somewhat similar phenomenon in the earthly world:
Once something is transmitted by radio, the sender can neither stop nor obliterate it in passage. Not until it arrives at the receiving station can a subsequent request possibly cause the recipient to destroy it. But then it is too late, for the recipient will already know the contents of the transmission. Besides, such wireless messages can also sometimes be intercepted by other stations. Similarly, under favorable conditions mediums can intercept psychic ether-recordings not meant for them, and just as radio messages on Earth are not stopped from reaching the main receiving station by the interception of other stations, neither are psychic ether-recordings stopped because of interception by mediums. Such messages and ether-recordings are transmitted under established laws, in the earthly and psychic dimensions. Therefore, no one in the earthly or psychic world can end anything already broadcast or recorded. The process must follow its determined course until—under the established laws—the transmission fades, dissolves and disappears. Though He never violates His laws, it is possible for God and the Youngest to diminish the impact of Ardor’s recordings by diverting them to power centers (“receiving stations”) in distant space, or the recordings can under favorable conditions even be stopped completely by “adhering” to these power centers. But if the main “psychic receiving station”—in this case Earth itself—exerts sufficient attraction through, for example, large accumulations of Darkness, or through the collective thought of a number of people preoccupied62 with “known” ether-recordings, thereby attracting same, the recordings usually enter the Earth’s stratum as actual events despite the efforts of the Youngest to divert them. Consequently, it is vital that people be persuaded as much as possible not to heed and “believe in” the prophecies of the Apocalypse, for example, or the predictions of mediums who have intuitively intercepted Ardor’s ether-recordings.
But whenever Ardor’s forecasts (ether-images) for human activity are about to enter the Earth’s stratum as real events, despite the efforts of the Youngest to prevent them, God can give warning through the guardian spirits to those endangered by or involved in the impending events. Thus at the last moment it is sometimes possible to stop such events from becoming reality in life on Earth. If, say, one of Ardor’s plans for warfare is about to enter the Earth’s stratum, God will issue warnings to those possessed of the power to decide whether the threat is to result in hostilities, or be resolved peacefully through diplomacy. Should such people ignore the doubts and warnings of their conscience and order war, however, nothing can stop the ether-images from becoming earthly reality, for God never goes against the human free will for good or evil. But anyone who truly has the will for good does not have to become enslaved by the Darkness that streams toward humanity from Ardor’s ether-images.
Therefore, people should not “believe in” the prophecies of the Apocalypse, nor in the predictions given by astrologers, by spiritualistic mediums or other fortune-tellers. Such predictions may be true enough in their origin, but they do not necessarily have to come true in the earthly world (See Toward the Light, page 253: 5 to page 255: 1 to page 202: 4).
Why did Satan’s return to God take place in our time? And why has he chosen to inform humanity of the eternal truths?
Many will find it difficult to believe that the return of Satan— Ardor— to God has taken place in our time. However, since God and the Youngest have striven for this goal for millions of years, their work would certainly meet with success sooner or later, and so it happened that the goal was reached in the year 1912.
But how many people here and now understand they live in an historic age? Most forget that each individual becomes a part in the formation of the destiny of humanity. Earthly events do not become “history” until such time as they can be combined and observed at a distance. Only a few are able to see and understand the history of the “future” in the events of their own lifetime. For instance, how many of the contemporaries of Jesus had any conception of the future significance of his mission?
When Ardor had returned to God, he must of necessity have been the one chosen to inform mankind of what he had sinned against God and against humans. Thus, “Ardor’s Account” is a confession, a penance requested of him by God through which to obtain the forgiveness of human beings.
Whether people who come into possession of Toward the Light will trust in its message is a matter between them, their conscience, and God.
Why does God continue to create human spirits after Ardor’s return? Does this not make God a slave of the promise He gave millions of years ago?
If God gives a promise, He is of course bound by it until its fulfillment. But God gives no promise until it has been carefully considered in every aspect and He is fully aware that it can be carried out as intended. And even though God binds Himself for long periods through His words, He becomes not a “slave” to His promises, precisely because He knows their future implications in every detail.
Human beings, on the other hand, often make themselves the slaves of their promises, partly because they usually do not seriously consider—and indeed cannot always consider—all the implications, partly because they often make promises against their conscience, and partly because these may be given in an emotional moment without thought for the possible consequences, and so on. Humans therefore fail time and again to keep their promises, which inevitably gives many of them pangs of conscience, if not in this life then after death when the time of reckoning approaches.
But God never fails to keep His given word, nor will He in this case. And for as long as mankind is bound to the “Eldest” still incarnate here on Earth, God will do that which He promised63 His fallen children at the dawn of time, namely, to prevent the astral counterpart of the human body from becoming a “shadow”, devoid of thought and will. For not until the last of the Eldest, those incarnated by Ardor, have died, will humans be released from their creators—and, then, at the same time will God be released from His promise.
Is there any substantiation in the Bible for the forgiveness of Satan (Ardor) by God and by humans?
Not directly, but such evidence is given indirectly in the New Testament.
In Matthew 5: 44 and Luke 6: 27-28 it is written: ”. . .love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which spitefully use you, and persecute you.”
Having spoken thus, Jesus does not then add that Satan is excepted. And since the arch-enemy of mankind is—was, rather—Satan, or Ardor, humans must therefore also learn 1) to “love” Satan, the creator and enemy of mankind; 2) to do “good” to him, who most of all has sinned against and hated them; 3) to “bless” him, who has hurled the most and the worst of all curses upon them; and 4) to “pray” for him, who most of all has abused and persecuted them. For human beings cannot wholly and fully comply with these words of Jesus unless Satan is included.
There is also the parable of “The Prodigal Son”, in Luke 15: 11-32.
This was one of the parables of the time and so was not original with Jesus, but he often used it because it expressed for him the true, all-encompassing and all-forgiving love of God, as the Father. It gave Jesus certainty during his life on Earth that the fallen but beloved brother, despite all his departures from the path, would nevertheless one day find the road and return to their Father’s home.
In this parable, if interpreted as Jesus sees it, mankind is the son who remained at the father’s home—the father being God. The son who journeyed to a far country and there led a riotous life is Satan. When the father in the parable sees his degenerate son, grief-laden, wretched and in rags, coming along the road to the father’s home, he hastens to meet him, embraces him and forgives him from the fullness of his loving heart and mind; and he forgives all the sorrow, all the suffering the son has caused him through his sinful life, and the father rejoices in his home-coming. But when the son who had remained at home—mankind—learns of the welcome that their mutual father has given the returned son, he rejoices not in this event but becomes envious and angry. He understands not the father’s gladness, understands not that the true love of a father excuses and forgives everything when deep grief and true remorse completely fills the heart of the sinner and takes away his defiance.
(Jesus only retold this parable, he did not interpret it for his listeners. He usually let them draw their own conclusions from the parables he employed.)
In his human existence, Jesus saw clearly that, as in the parable, so it would happen at some future time when Satan—one of God’s children—would return in remorse to the Father’s Home, and that mankind would in one way or another be informed of this event. He foresaw that many, in their narrow-mindedness, in their self-assertiveness and in their lack of neighborly love would not understand that God could in His heart forgive a being who had fallen as deeply as had Satan. He foresaw that many would not be able to comprehend that God must rejoice a thousand-fold more in the return of a son who was thought to be lost for eternity than He would rejoice in the children who live under His immediate care and attention.
If the parable is applied in a purely human father- and-son sense, then would God, were He unable to forgive Ardor—His beloved, lost and newfound son—be far inferior to the human father of the parable. But would this not be inconceivable? Must not God in His Paternal love greatly transcend even the most loving of human fathers? Indeed, if human fathers in life on Earth are able to forgive their children for their wickedness, how much more must not God—the Father of all—be able to forgive each and every one of His children without preference, even though humans may feel that the transgressions of Satan cannot in all eternity be forgiven?
The reason people understand not God’s forgiveness of Ardor is rooted in their lack of neighborly love, in their human selfishness. If only they themselves are saved, Satan is no concern of theirs. He fully deserves his sufferings, so why take pity on him or have compassion for him?
However, all should remember to take to heart Paul’s beautiful words about love: “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.”
If Satan (Ardor) has indeed returned to God, as Toward the Light informs us, why is this not noticeable in life on Earth? There appears to be as much sin and misery, as much crime and misdeed as ever.
Not until millions have not only come to know the message of Toward the Light, but also have as a result fully forgiven Ardor, have fully understood their responsibility both toward God and toward their fellow beings and have learned to live in accordance with their conscience, not until then can there be any improvement in humanity’s religious, ethical or moral understanding and perception of life. It must be remembered that Ardor has for millions of years sown the evil seed of Darkness in the minds and in the thoughts of human beings, and this seed has flourished and spread everywhere among human beings. The ugly, reeking toadstools and weeds of sin still grow and flourish and spread the fertile seeds of Darkness through all mankind; and this process will continue until all individuals with all their strength seek to uproot the toadstools and weeds from their minds and thoughts, until each and everyone has learned to purge the ego of all impurity and ugliness of sin. For no “miracle” can at one stroke change the impure, sinful human race into perfected beings of Light.
Humanity can be compared to a flowerbed overgrown with weeds. Even though the mother plant of the weeds is dug out to the very root, this will still not clean the flowerbed. Each single shoot of weed sprouting forth must be uprooted before the flowers can grow freely, can develop new shoots and new leaves, can bud and blossom. Likewise must each individual carefully purge the flowerbed of the mind and thought, otherwise the weeds of sin and Darkness will strangle all the goodness and beauty that God has implanted in the inner being of every human spirit. But such purification of the ego is exceedingly slow, and the human spirit must live through many incarnations before succeeding fully in cleansing the self of the earthly Darkness. Thus it is of no avail that the Christian peoples cling tenaciously to the belief that the death of Jesus was one of atonement. These people must be told again and again: the blood of Jesus cleanses not the impurities of sin, Jesus atoned not for the sins of mankind through his death. Indeed, belief in the reality of the Doctrine of Atonement benefits in no way the Christians. It but prolongs and makes more difficult their journey toward the distant home-land—God’s Kingdom, the true Paradise. But if Christians persist in clinging to belief in the atonement death of Jesus, and if they continue, at mention of Toward the Light—God’s Message—to refer to the words of Jesus about “false prophets” (words never spoken by him), then it could well be that Christianity will be the last religious community to accept fully the Message that God has sent to all humanity. It could happen thus—no one knows. But one thing is certain: it is the Christian communities—all of them—that ought to be the first to depart from the dogmas of the church, the man-made dogmas that go against God’s innermost Being and contradict all common sense. But any who listen to God’s Message will always be able to invoke His direct help in the struggle against Darkness, in the cleansing and purification of the self. For all who in their love of God, in their trust in Him as the Father, submit to His leadership, will soon feel encompassed by the strengthening, life-giving radiations of the Light, will soon feel themselves protected by His strong hand.
The present era of mankind can be regarded as a great interregnum. The Prince of Darkness and of mankind, Satan (Ardor), has relinquished his rule and laid down his crown and sceptre. The Kingdom of Darkness—the Earth—has no “sovereign” more—his throne stands empty! For Ardor was the Prince of the Earth and of humanity from the moment the first human beings were created for earthly life. And even though God, at the dawn of time, when certain of the Eldest sought His help for their wretched creatures, promised to help them, God became not thereby the King and Prince of humanity. But because of the leadership He had arranged—to bring spiritual life and Light to the humans so as to be able to overcome the sin of temptations and Darkness—He knew He would eventually win back His eldest fallen children and some day be fully acknowledged as God, the spiritual Father and Supreme Leader of all humanity.
The first goal has been reached: the return of Ardor to God, to his Father, with the result that mankind is no longer under Ardor’s rule, no longer subject to his direct influence and his direct inspiration. Nevertheless, human beings remain far from attainment of the full unity, the mutual love and the trust required for acknowledging God as their spiritual Father, as the Supreme Leader of life on Earth, and as the Lord and Prince of the Earthly Realm.
Not until the greater part of the Earth’s many millions of people have learned to know the true God, as He really is, have learned to love Him and submit to Him alone, have fully learned to forgive Ardor, the creator of the human body, not until then will it truly be felt that Satan’s throne stands empty!
In Toward the Light, God calls to His beloved children all, calls in longing for the fullness of their love, in longing for their complete trust!
Yes, God calls to His beloved children.
But—when will they hear His calling voice?
When will they answer Him?
When will they, from deep within their hearts, meet His profound and infinite paternal love with the fullness of their love, with their perfect trust?
God has called!
And God is longing!
(Page references apply to the 1979 edition.)
50) Refers to Paul’s account of how the Doctrine of Atonement arose. See The Doctrine of Atonement and the Shorter Road, pages 15-17.
51) Toward the Light, page 16: 5.
52) God selected the eldest of the Youngest to lead humanity, not to be “Ruler of the Kingdom of the Earth.” Ardor implanted this distortion of the mission of Jesus in the thoughts of the incarnated Youngest and it has no connection with the truth. It is Christ’s mission to lead all human spirits to God’s Kingdom, not to “rule” over them.
53) The spheres.
54) At the dawn of time, God established regular laws for both spiritual and molecular Darkness. When the Eldest began experimenting with the Darkness that had separated from its encapsulation in the Light, much of the molecular Darkness escaped God’s direct control. As a result, many of its various manifestations no longer conformed to God’s regular laws. But through millions of years the Light has exerted a regulating, harmonizing and stabilizing influence on this Darkness. Therefore, many of these irregular and indeterminable manifestations are now automatically regulated by better or completely established laws. The “natural laws” referred to here are the laws for the spiritual Darkness.
55) The laws for the many and varied manifestations of molecular Darkness. These are not all as regular and firmly established as are the laws for “spiritual Darkness”.
56) Should some say that parents are often forced to leave young children and infants unattended because the mother, or both mother and father are obliged to earn their livelihood outside the home, there is but one response: no young or infant children must ever be left alone. God will always lay the responsibility for accidents on the mother, or on both parents, where it rightfully belongs. But if people cannot support young children without absence from home—and if they cannot afford supervision—then they must seek help from public authorities, humiliating though they may believe it to be. There is no other way. (See also Toward the Light, page 126: 3-8).
57) Railway accidents can of course arise in many other ways, but when not due to natural catastrophe, humans usually bear the responsibility.
58) Many other examples could be given, for there is enough to choose from in human transgressions, recklessness, foolhardiness, competitive sport, irresponsibility—and human malevolence.
59) The Youngest—the spiritual leaders of humanity.
60) One must imagine that Thought and Will reacted to the influence of the Darkness while they existed on the border between Light and Darkness. See Toward the Light, page 159: 3.
61) Toward the Light, page 101: 9.
62) Through predictions, prophecies, visions and the like.
63) Toward the Light, page 14: 19 and 322: 1.