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RE: Fascinating Lucifer

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  • W.Dallas TenBroeck
    Apl 8 2005 Dear K: and Friends: On the subject of the “devil,” Satan, and Lucifer the following offers some excellent explanations. I would like to draw
    Message 1 of 2 , Apr 8, 2005
      Apl 8 2005

      Dear K: and Friends:

      On the subject of the “devil,” Satan, and Lucifer the following offers some
      excellent explanations.

      I would like to draw your attention to the profound scholarship that HPB
      reveals, not only here, but in all her writings -- it illustrates one of the
      objects of the THEOSOPHICAL SOCIETY -- and it shows us the depths of real



      WHAT'S in a name? Very often there is more in it than the profane is
      prepared to understand, or the learned mystic to explain. It is an
      invisible, secret, but very potential influence that every name carries
      about with it and "leaveth wherever it goeth." Carlyle thought that "there
      is much, nay, almost all, in names." "Could I unfold the influence of names,
      which are the most important of all clothings, I were a second great
      Trismegistus," he writes.

      The name or title of a magazine started with a definite object, is,
      therefore, all important; for it is, indeed, the invisible seed-grain, which
      will either grow "to be an all-over-shadowing tree" on the fruits of which
      must depend the nature of the results brought about by the said object, or
      the tree will wither and die. These considerations show that the name of the
      present magazine--rather equivocal to orthodox Christian ears--is due to no
      careless selection, but arose in consequence of much thinking over its
      fitness, and was adopted as the best symbol to express that object and the
      results in view.

      Now, the first and most important, if not the sole object of the magazine,
      is expressed in the line from the 1st Epistle to the Corinthians, on its
      title page. It is to bring light to "the hidden things of darkness," (iv.
      5); to show in their true aspect and their original real meaning things and
      names, men and their doings and customs; it is finally to fight prejudice,
      hypocrisy and shams in every nation, in every class of Society, as in every
      department of life. The task is a laborious one but it is neither
      impracticable nor useless, if even as an experiment.

      Thus, for an attempt of such nature, no better title could ever be found
      than the one chosen. "Lucifer," is the pale morning-star, the precursor of
      the full blaze of the noon-day sun--the "Eosphoros" of the Greeks. It shines
      timidly at dawn to gather forces and dazzle the eye after sunset as its own
      brother "Hesperos"--the radiant evening star, or the planet Venus. No fitter
      symbol exists for the proposed work--that of throwing a ray of truth on
      everything hidden by the darkness of prejudice, by social or religious
      misconceptions; especially by that idiotic routine in life, which, once that
      a certain action, a thing, a name, has been branded by slanderous
      inventions, however unjust, makes respectable people, so called, turn away
      shiveringly, refusing to even look at it from any other aspect than the one
      sanctioned by public opinion. Such an endeavour then, to force the
      weak-hearted to look truth straight in the face, is helped most
      efficaciously by a title belonging to the category of branded names.

      Piously inclined readers may argue that "Lucifer" is accepted by all the
      churches as one of the many names of the Devil. According to Milton's superb
      fiction, Lucifer is Satan, the "rebellious" angel, the enemy of God and man.
      If one analyzes his rebellion, however, it will be found of no worse nature
      than an assertion of free-will and independent thought, as if Lucifer had
      been born in the XIXth century. This epithet of "rebellious" is a
      theological calumny, on a par with that other slander of God by the
      Predestinarians, one that makes of deity an "Almighty" fiend worse than the
      "rebellious" Spirit himself; "an omnipotent Devil desiring to be
      'complimented' as all merciful when he is exerting the most fiendish
      cruelty," as put by J. Cotter Morison. Both the foreordaining and
      predestining fiend-God, and his subordinate agent are of human invention;
      they are two of the most morally repulsive and horrible theological dogmas
      that the nightmares of light-hating monks have ever evolved out of their
      unclean fancies.

      They date from the Mediæval age, the period of mental obscuration, during
      which most of the present prejudices and superstitions have been forcibly
      inoculated on the human mind, so as to have become nearly ineradicable in
      some cases, one of which is the present prejudice now under discussion.
      So deeply rooted, indeed, is this preconception and aversion to the name of
      Lucifer--meaning no worse than "light-bringer" (from lux, lucis, "light,"
      and ferre "to bring")1--even among the educated classes, that by adopting it
      for the title of their magazine the editors have the prospect of a long
      strife with public prejudice before them.

      So absurd and ridiculous is that prejudice, indeed, that no one has seemed
      to ever ask himself the question, how came Satan to be called a
      light-bringer, unless the silvery rays of the morning-star can in any way be
      made suggestive of the glare of the infernal flames. It is simply, as
      Henderson showed, "one of those gross perversions of sacred writ which so
      extensively obtain, and which are to be traced to a proneness to seek for
      more in a given passage than it really contains--a disposition to be
      influenced by sound rather than sense, and an implicit faith in received
      interpretation"--which is not quite one of the weaknesses of our present
      age. Nevertheless, the prejudice is to the shame of our century.

      This cannot be helped. The two editors would hold selves as recreants in
      their own sight, as traitors to the very spirit of the proposed work, were
      they to yield and cry craven before the danger. If one would fight
      prejudice, and brush off the ugly cobwebs of superstition and materialism
      alike from the noblest ideals of our forefathers, one has to prepare for

      "The crown of the reformer and the innovator is a crown of thorns" indeed.
      If one would rescue Truth in all her chaste nudity from the almost
      bottomless well, into which she has been hurled by cant and hypocritical
      propriety, one should not hesitate to descend into the dark, gaping pit of
      that well. No matter how badly the blind bats--the dwellers in darkness, and
      the haters of light--may treat in their gloomy abode the intruder, unless
      one is the first to show the spirit and courage he preaches to others, he
      must be justly held as a hypocrite and a seceder from his own principles.

      Hardly had the title been agreed upon, when the first premonitions of what
      was in store for us, in the matter of the opposition to be encountered owing
      to the title chosen, appeared on our horizon. One of the editors received
      and recorded some spicy objections. The scenes that follow are sketches from


      A Well-known Novelist. Tell me about your new magazine. What class do you
      propose to appeal to?

      Editor. No class in particular: we intend to appeal to the public.

      Novelist. I am very glad of that. For once I shall be one of the public, for
      I don't understand your subject in the least, and I want to. But you must
      remember that if your public is to understand you, it must necessarily be a
      very small one. People talk about occultism nowadays as they talk about many
      other things, without the least idea of what it means. We are so ignorant
      and--so prejudiced.

      Editor. Exactly. That is what calls the new magazine into existence. We
      propose to educate you, and to tear the mask from every prejudice.

      Novelist. That really is good news to me, for I want to be educated. What is
      your magazine to be called?

      Editor. Lucifer.

      Novelist. What! Are you going to educate us in vice'? We know enough about
      that. Fallen angels are plentiful. You may find popularity, for soiled doves
      are in fashion just now, while the white-winged angels are voted a bore,
      because they are not so amusing. But I doubt your being able to teach us


      A Man of the World (in a careful undertone, for the scene is a
      dinner-party). I hear you are going to start a magazine, all about
      occultism. Do you know, I'm very glad. I don't say anything about such
      matters as a rule, but some queer things have happened in my life which
      can't be explained in any ordinary manner. I hope you will go in for

      Editor. We shall try, certainly. My impression is, that when occultism is in
      any measure apprehended, its laws are accepted by everyone as the only
      intelligible explanation of life.

      A M. W. Just so, I want to know all about it, for 'pon my honour, life's a
      mystery. There are plenty of other people as curious as myself. This is an
      age which is afflicted with the Yankee disease of "wanting to know." I'll
      get you lots of subscribers. What's the magazine called?

      Editor. Lucifer--and (warned by former experience) don't misunderstand the
      name. It is typical of the divine spirit which sacrificed itself for
      humanity--it was Milton's doing that it ever became associated with the
      devil. We are sworn enemies to popular prejudices, and it is quite
      appropriate that we should attack such a prejudice as this--Lucifer, you
      know, is the Morning Star--the Lightbearer, . . . . . .

      A M. W. (interrupting). Oh, I know all that--at least don't know, but I take
      it for granted you've got some good reason for taking such a title. But your
      first object is to have readers; you want the public to buy your magazine, I
      suppose. That's in the programme, isn't it?

      Editor. Most decidedly.

      A M. W. Well, listen to the advice of a man who knows his way about town.
      Don't mark your magazine with the wrong colour at starting. It's quite
      evident, when one stays an instant to think of its derivation and meaning,
      that Lucifer is an excellent word. But the public don't stay to think of
      derivations and meanings; and the first impression is the most important.
      Nobody will buy the magazine if you call it Lucifer.


      A Fashionable Lady Interested in Occultism. I want to hear some more about
      the new magazine, for I have interested a great many people in it, even with
      the little you have told me. But I find it difficult to express its actual
      purpose. What is it?

      Editor. To try and give a little light to those that want it.

      A F. L. Well, that's a simple way of putting it, and will be very useful to
      me. What is the magazine to be called?

      Editor. Lucifer.

      A F. L. (After a pause) You can't mean it.

      Editor. Why not?

      A F. L. The associations are so dreadful! What can be the object of calling
      it that? It sounds like some unfortunate sort of joke, made against it by
      its enemies.

      Editor. Oh, but Lucifer, you know, means Light-bearer; it is typical of the
      Divine Spirit--

      A F. L. Never mind all that--I want to do your magazine good and make it
      known, and you can't expect me to enter into explanations of that sort every
      time I mention the title? Impossible! Life is too short and too busy.
      Besides, it would produce such a bad effect; people would think me priggish,
      and then I couldn't talk at all, for I couldn't bear them to think that.
      Don't call it Lucifer please don't. Nobody knows what the word is typical
      of; what it means now is the devil, nothing more or less.

      Editor. But then that is quite a mistake, and one of the first prejudices we
      propose to do battle with. Lucifer is the pale, pure herald of dawn--

      Lady (interrupting). I thought you were going to do something more
      interesting and more important than to whitewash mythological characters. We
      shall all have to go to school again, or read up Dr. Smith's Classical
      Dictionary. And what is the use of it when it is done? I thought you were
      going to tell us things about our own lives and how to make them better. I
      suppose Milton wrote about Lucifer, didn't he?--but nobody reads Milton now.
      Do let us have a modern title with some human meaning in it.


      A Journalist (thoughtfully, while rolling his cigarette). Yes, it is a good
      idea, this magazine of yours. We shall all laugh at it, as a matter of
      course: and we shall cut it up in the papers. But we shall all read it,
      because secretly everybody hungers after the mysterious. What are you going
      to call it?

      Editor. Lucifer.

      Journalist (striking a light). Why not The Fusee? Quite as good a title and
      not so pretentious.

      The "Novelist," the "Man of the World," the "Fashionable Lady," and the
      "Journalist," should be the first to receive a little instruction.

      A glimpse into the real and primitive character of Lucifer can do them no
      harm and may, perchance, cure them of a bit of ridiculous prejudice. They
      ought to study their Homer and Hesiod's Theogony if they would do justice to
      Lucifer, "Eosphoros and Hesperos," the Morning and the Evening beautiful
      star. If there are more useful things to do in this life than "to whitewash
      mythological characters," to slander and blacken them is, at least, as
      useless, and shows, moreover, a narrow-mindedness which can do honour to no

      To object to the title of LUCIFER, only because its "associations are so
      dreadful," is pardonable--if it can be pardonable in any case--only in an
      ignorant American missionary of some dissenting sect, in one whose natural
      laziness and lack of education led him to prefer ploughing the minds of
      heathens, as ignorant as he is himself, to the more profitable, but rather
      more arduous, process of ploughing the fields of his own father's farm. In
      the English clergy, however, who receive all a more or less classical
      education, and are, therefore, supposed to be acquainted with the ins and
      outs of theological sophistry and casuistry, this kind of opposition is
      absolutely unpardonable. It not only smacks of hypocrisy and deceit, but
      places them directly on a lower moral level than him they call the apostate
      angel. By endeavouring to show the theological Lucifer, fallen through the
      idea that

      To reign is worth
      ambition, though in Hell;
      Better to reign in
      Hell than serve in Heaven,

      they are virtually putting into practice the supposed crime they would fain
      accuse him of. They prefer reigning over the spirit of the masses by means
      of a pernicious dark LIE, productive of many an evil, than serve heaven by
      serving TRUTH. Such practices are worthy only of the Jesuits.

      But their sacred writ is the first to contradict their interpretations and
      the association of Lucifer, the Morning Star, with Satan. Chapter XXII of
      Revelation, verse 16th, says: "I, Jesus . . . am the root. . . and the
      bright and Morning Star" "early rising"): hence Eosphoros, or the Latin
      Lucifer. The oprobrium attached to this name is of such a very late date,
      the Roman Church found itself forced to screen the theological slander
      behind a two-sided interpretation--as usual.

      Christ, we are told, is the "Morning Star," the divine Lucifer; and Satan
      the usurpator of the Verbum, the "infernal Lucifer.

      "2 " The great Archangel Michael, the conqueror of Satan, is identical in

      3 with Mercury-Mithra, to whom, after defending the Sun (symbolical of God)
      from the attacks of Venus-Lucifer, was given the possession of this planet,
      et datus est ei locus Luciferi.

      And since the Archangel Michael is the 'Angel of the Face,' and 'the Vicar
      of the Verbum' he is now considered in the Roman Church as the regent of
      that planet Venus which 'the vanquished fiend had usurped'." Angelus faciei
      Dei sedem superbi humilis Obtinuit, says Cornelius à Lapide (in Vol. VI, p.

      This gives the reason why one of the early Popes was called Lucifer, as
      Yonge and ecclesiastical records prove. It thus follows that the title
      chosen for our magazine is as much associated with divine and pious ideas as
      with the supposed rebellion of the hero of Milton's "Paradise Lost."

      By choosing it, we throw the first ray of light and truth on a ridiculous
      prejudice which ought to have no room made for it in this our "age of facts
      and discovery."

      We work for true Religion and Science, in the interest of fact as against
      fiction and prejudice. It is our duty, as it is that of physical
      Science--professedly its mission--to throw light or facts in Nature hitherto
      surrounded by the darkness of ignorance. And since ignorance is justly
      regarded as the chief promoter of superstition, that work is, therefore, a
      noble and beneficent work.

      But natural Sciences are only one aspect of SCIENCE and TRUTH. Psychological
      and moral Sciences, or theosophy, the knowledge of divine truth, wheresoever
      found, are, still more important in human affairs, and real Science should
      not be limited simply to the physical aspect of life and nature.

      Science is an abstract of every fact, a comprehension of every truth within
      the scope of human research and intelligence. "Shakespeare's deep and
      accurate science in mental philosophy" (Coleridge), has proved more
      beneficent to the true philosopher in the study of the human
      heart--therefore, in the promotion of truth--than the more accurate, but
      certainly less deep, science of any Fellow of the Royal Institution.

      Those readers, however, who do not find themselves convinced that the Church
      had no right to throw a slur upon a beautiful star, and that it did so
      through a mere necessity of accounting for one of its numerous loans from
      Paganism with all its poetical conceptions of the truths in Nature, are
      asked to read our article "The History of a Planet." Perhaps, after its
      perusal, they will see how far Dupuis was justified in asserting that "all
      the theologies have their origin in astronomy." With the modern Orientalists
      every myth is solar. This is one more prejudice, and a preconception in
      favour of materialism and physical science. It will be one of our duties to
      combat it with much of the rest.
      H P B

      LUCIFER, September, 1887

      --------------------- Footnotes --------------------

      1 "It was Gregory the Great who was the first to apply this passage of
      Isaiah, 'How art thou fallen from Heaven. Lucifer. son of the morning,'
      etc., to Satan, and ever since the bold metaphor of the prophet, which
      referred, after all, but to an Assyrian king inimical to the Israelites, has
      been applied to the Devil."

      2 Mirville's Memoirs to the Academy of France, Vol. IV, quoting Cardinal

      3 Which paganism has passed long millenniums, it would seem, in copying
      beforehand Christian dogmas to come.


      Best wishes as always,



      -----Original Message-----
      From: krishtar
      Sent: Thursday, April 07, 2005
      Subject: Fascinating Lucifer

      Dear and friends

      This criticism is not new coming from christian sources...

      Lucifer for example has got , as may you know, additional sense, Christians
      and also the other Protestant sects think Lucifer is as the same as Satan,
      or the Devil, the Demon.

      In Brazil there is a big church called Igreja Universal do Reino de Deus (
      something like " Universal Church of the God´s Kingdom" ) that has spread
      out to many countries ( last time I counted it was 40 countries! )

      High hierarchy bishops gain a lot of money as much as the churches collect
      and they read and follow the Bible under dead letters...radical at extreme.

      Pre-fab miracles, healing difficult diseases, and a lot of exorcism, "
      pulling out lucifer´s or satan " from peoples´s bodies!!!

      Little churches...great busine$$.

      They are entreprises that do not pay taxes and make miracles without any



      ----- Original Message -----

      From: thalprin
      Sent: Thursday, April 07, 2005 4:02 PM
      Subject: Fascinating:

      "Godless companions

      In Arthur's case it seems he was influenced by young people who had
      no such background as his own. In later memories of this time he
      refers to `the godless companions of our youth', and says that
      during energetic and thoughtless days among them there were `a
      number of occasions when he was in imminent peril, brought face to
      face with death'.

      Whatever these escapades were, they were probably unknown to his
      parents. But to their grief there was another development in his
      life that they could not miss. Not only did their eldest son turn
      from their faith, he turned to Theosophy.


      Excerpt from:



      "Theosophy is a cult which, although only formed into a Society in
      1875, claims a special knowledge (theosophia - divine wisdom) which
      is supposedly preserved from generation to generation by a
      brotherhood of initiates.

      At the beginning of the twentieth century its best-known British
      publication, the monthly magazine LUCIFER, indicated clearly enough
      its anti-Christian nature.

      Its leading journal The THEOSOPHIST, at
      that time published monthly at the Society's headquarters in Madras,
      India, promoted in esoteric form the `wisdom' of eastern religions,
      including belief in reincarnation.

      While denying the personality of God (and the supernatural in
      Christianity), Theosophy claimed to be able to unify all religions
      and to establish a universal brotherhood. Its main `messenger' in
      the nineteenth century was the Russian, Helena Blavatsky (1831-
      1891), and she was followed by Annie Besant (1847-1933), who left
      her clergyman husband in 1873 for a life in politics, mysticism and
      eastern religions. From 1907 to her death she was President of the
      Theosophical Society."

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