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An Outline of Occult Science

civilization existing in that world. Men sought to investigate, through the physical world, the spiritual laws underlying it, and in this way human sciences arose. Human technical skill, artistic work, and their tools and means came about through the recognition and use of the forces of the physical world. To a man of the Chaldaic-Babylonian race the sense-world was no longer an illusion but a manifestation, in its different kingdoms, in mountains and seas, in air and water, of the spiritual activity of powers existing behind it, whose laws man was striving to learn. To the Egyptian, the earth was a field of work, given to him in a condition which he must, by his own powers of intelligence, so transform that it should bear the impress of human power. From Atlantis, oracle-sanctuaries, originating chiefly from the Mercury oracle, had been transplanted to Egypt. Yet there were others as well,—for example, Venus oracles. In that which was fostered, in their oracle-sanctuaries, among the Egyptian peoples, the germ of a new culture was planted. This germ proceeded from a great leader who had received his training in the Persian Zarathustra Mysteries, who was the reincarnated individuality of a disciple of the great Zarathustra himself. Let us call him “Hermes.” Through acceptance of the Zarathustra Mysteries he was able to find the right way to guide the Egyptian people. This people had so turned its attention to the physical sense-world, during earthly life between birth and death that it was able only to a limited extent to directly behold the spiritual world behind the physical phenomena, although it recognized the spiritual laws of the world. Thus it could not think of the spiritual world as the one in which it could live while on earth, but on the other hand, it could be shown how man will live, in the disembodied state after death in the world of those spirits who, during earthly life, appear through their impressions upon the sense-world. Hermes taught that man qualifies himself for union with spiritual forces after death, in proportion as he uses his powers