GNOSTICISM VS. AGNOSTICISM
- From "Dashed Against the Rock" by W. J. Colville, 1894
(heavily influenced if not written by John W. Keely)
Placed in the public domain on August 30, 1989 by Vangard Sciences, PO
BOX 1031, Mesquite, TX, 75150:
Comments by Aldebaran (pseudonym for Keely in "Dashed Against the Rock")
I hold that ONE SUPREME FORCE, which we may term the
incomprehensible, holds within itself all these sublime qualities, as an
octave embraces its many tones.
This force expressed in the human organism, in the varied impulses
already designated, has what may be termed CONCORDANT CHORD-SETTINGS
dominated by one or other of the above-named differentiations of this
supreme force. Now let us ask what makes human beings differ the one
from the other.
The reason we give for this striking natural phenomenon is that in
one individual these chord-settings are allowed full amplitude in
action, while in others they are suppressed, and by suppression rendered
To illustrate : we will picture a beggar asking alms of a richly
dressed gentleman, who passes by entirely oblivious of the suppliant's
needs; but here the wonderful law of sympathetic action intercedes,
making the wealthy individual comprehend the necessitous condition of
At this point the EGO enters the chamber of ordeal; here, in
commonplace life, in every-day surroundings, man is tried; this is
The well-to-do man goes on his way, not caring to stop, hurried
perchance by the urgency of worldly affairs; the chord-setting
representing that differentiation of infinite force called by us
COMPASSION, acting upon its concordant chord-setting, loudly proclaims
to the EGO what is right action, and the opportunity passing when it
should be seized, powerfully exerts its force against the will of the
personality that would suppress its action.
Here is where the battle is fought; simple though the illustration
may appear, it forcibly sets forth the actual conflict continually
waging between divine wisdom and mortal error, carelessness, and
The man of wealth and position goes on, perhaps, for some distance,
the battle all the while continuing; finally, he stops and turns back,
he yields to the dominating influence of that chord-setting; he gives
the beggar alms and goes on his way with the skies bright above him: he
has won a battle he will not have to fight again.
Understand that victory is won, not by the giving of alms, but by
YIELDING to that divine force-differentiation.
If this chord-setting had not retained its dominance, it would only
require a few instances of the above type to render it latent, and when
latent the person is no longer amenable to influences calculated to
In like manner, other centres may be rendered latent by repeated
suppression, until we find a person so dead to all appeals from the
various chord-settings that his whole course in life is represented by
the sum-total of the antagonisms internally produced: results proving
this are seen every day.
You ask why do people commit such blunders and perform such acts as
they do, all the while seemingly unable to help themselves.
The reason is that they have RENDERED LATENT these centres which
otherwise would have given them the power to rightly control their deeds
instead of being, as they now are, dominated exclusively by the forces
of aggregated matter which we usually call the self-will of the outer
personality, as distinguished from the distinctly humane individuality
which always responds to a divine appeal.
It can be readily seen from this example that a man can mould himself
practically as he chooses; though he may have to encounter many
obstacles erected by himself in past periods of earthly existence, as he
comes to earth anew with these chord-settings latent, or developed to
the extent they were so, at the conclusion of his last earth-embodiment;
a man has therefore only to carefully examine the condition of these
settings to learn whether they are latent or developed: if latent, he
knows well that if he yields to the dominance of the chord-settings of
the supreme force-and he needs no monitor other than these to instruct
him, their voice being loud-toned, full, strong, deep, and high-to carry
him on to the consummation of his highest ideal, their suppression
leading him to the lowest condition in which we behold that section of
humanity which is dominated by the action of the blind forces inherent
in aggregated matter,-forces which are at all times powerfully and
intimately associated with every one who possesses a material body.
The work of arousing to activity the latent chord-settings is
sometimes equivalent to giving birth to an entirely new condition in the
person, the intellect and the imagination having to actively co-operate
in the endeavor to produce even the minutest degree of activity.
In such persons their hardest experiences may be of the greatest
benefit to them, if rightly taken; for it is through certain orders of
experience-not unattended with suffering-that these centres are
powerfully acted upon. The fore-going illustration of the merchant and
the beggar introduces one in whom the action of these centres is to a
certain degree active.
In experiences where the emotions are INTENSELY aroused their action
is far greater, andwe may see the result of the conflict, inthe event
of a person of hitherto unnoticeable traits being developed either into
a person of crabbed, irritable disposition or into one of considerable
moral beauty and attractiveness, and all because a centre hitherto
dormant has been powerfully aroused or more completely suppressed.
Who knows but that all the varieties of disposition we see expressed
every hour in the persons of those about us is due to HABIT; in the case
of the sweet and lovable, to the habit of constant yielding to the
dominance of what we may term super-celestial force, while on the other
hand, the sour and morose are but the suffering victims of their own
habitual suppression of these same divine centres of radiation, which
are continually dispersing the divine energy focalized upon
them throughout the eternal ages of unwasting life.
Concerning CIRCUMSTANCES let it be most emphatically stated that they
never need be permitted to suppress the upward tendencies of our nature;
that they have, like ALL experiences, an opportunity contained within
them, to act either for the more perfect dominance of the celestial or
the terrestrial, none need deny; but it rests with every individual to
EMBRACE or REJECT opportunities as he will, to accept the honors of
initiation or undergo the regrets consequent upon failure.
Only the keen, sensitive soul can understand when these opportunities
come and go, for only such have won this right by successive victories
gained through yielding to these celestial streams of force, and the
conqueror over himself is the victor ALWAYS, though he may SEEM
sometimes to yield obedience to a force greater than himself.
Let the supreme desire of each one of us ever be that these
resonating centres, permanent throughout measureless cycles of time,
graduated by the all-wise builders of the universe to perfect
concordance with the Divine Force which is in essence incomprehensible,-
shall vibrate to fullest amplitude of action; so shall we each escape
from the pains, sorrows, and disappointments associated with their
suppression and INEVITABLY resulting from it."
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