Death or survival of conscience
By Athos A. Altomonte
The path of fire is the mental materialization of the will of the soul. Therefore illumination is the result of the contact between two wills, where the lesser personal one accepts the influence of the greater and impersonal one.
This contact is called sacrifice or renunciation to oneself , because it marks the deposition of the reason of the small physical self as absolute protagonist (dominus) of the body and its emotions. But the concept of sacrifice and renunciation is a result of the profane, therefore exoteric vision.
For the initiate who has developed his mind and widened his conscience, the inferior self was the weak link of himself; he worked on its limits up to breaking its bonds. As a consequence, to get rid of them is not at all a sacrificial act but the ‘initiatory liberation' represented in the Caduceus of Hermes.
Furthermore, to let mind and conscience penetrate each other with the energetic drive of the subtle conscience, in other words the fact that mind and conscience are influenced by the faculty of thought of a superior degree, it is not a loss but a very important alliance.
The misunderstanding of sacrifice and renunciation originates from the fact that the ordinary man feels and believes himself to be only a body, separated from the part that he calls ‘soul'. In actual fact he is both; he is even more, if we consider the highest part that is the spiritual monad . Therefore there aren't top and bottom , or outside and inside , but a unique reality that originates several planes of substance. Starting from the prime cause that is the spiritual nucleus, its reflection condensate the nucleus of the soul first and then it exteriorizes itself, solidifying in the nucleus of the physical self. This is how the advanced man can ‘perceive' that physical and subtle consciences are two sides of the same identity.
This perception causes the fall of the illusion of dualism and separation that keeps apart the different dimensions of ourselves. The latter are respectively the root of the physical thought , represented in the elements ‘earth and water' and the root of spiritual thought represented in the elements ‘air and fire'.
The fire element materializes in cosmic love generating a totipotent will , which is their third aspect. The latter diversifies itself slowing down in the densest energies such as mental, astral and material energies, of which it takes the form. Every form that takes on the will of the third aspect manifests an identity, which is expressed as a conscience characteristic of that plane. Therefore, even at the risk of boring the reader, we repeat that on the spiritual plane we have the spiritual conscience, on the plane of the soul we have the conscience of the soul ; on the mental plane (from reason to pure Reason) we have the mental conscience , on the emotional plane we have astral (see) and sensual (see) conscience and on the plane of instinct we have passional conscience.
We now reach a conclusion that is in many ways a sore point, where we should reflect, because it is about choosing to live or to die. To choose with ‘open eyes' we should know how the game works.
The elements mentioned below belong to the Philosophy of Fire:
A) The fragment of material conscience (of which the physical self represent the central nucleus) is given up by the subtle conscience (of which the soul represents the central nucleus) by osmosis.
B) The material conscience, like everything that supports the physical body, has an impermanent character.
C) The subtle conscience, like everything that supports the spiritual body (monad) has a permanent character.
D) When the physical body is dissolved all the elements that make it go back to their source; matter goes back to matter, liquids to liquids and ethers to ether. All but material conscience, which, disconnected from its source, temporarily survives in the phenomena called ‘astral shells' (See).
According to this scheme conscience dies and just like man it dies definitely, unless we consider as life the shred of astral survival that we find in the so-called ‘shells'. The destiny of those who got in contact with the two aspects of conscience, building the mental link called ‘Bridge' (see) is different. This bridge is in actual fact a vortex of psychic energy, as we have tried to represent in the image at the beginning.
The link or bridge must be built in the physical form and this is the sense of initiation as it was intended in ancient times and by those who created the word ‘pontiff' and the term ‘ Ars Pontificia ' (See). Through the greater initiation we realize the ‘very important alliance' that consists of the alignment of the physical ego with its greater counterpart, which implies Free Will , a result of this contact.
This connection has other advantages for the obscure mind of man; among them there is the continuity of conscience , which is kept even at the moment of physical death.
Without connection the material conscience is dispersed together with the body and it dies. Connected to its greater nucleus, the physical conscience follows the destiny of the soul, awake and self-controlled.
For the Eastern initiate not to reach the continuity of conscience for which he meditates means to repeat all the fixed duties for that life (in Sanskrit Dharma) without having any memory of the past. It means to face the same trials with the risk of repeating the same mistakes and running into the same evils.
The loss of conscience before repeating a life is found in Greece in the myth of the River Lethe whose waters caused the loss of memory to those who prepared to go back to the earthly world, depriving them of the advantages of any knowledge acquired beforehand.
The esotericist should pay attention to the practice of building bridges and widening the vigilant abilities of his conscience. These are the requirements for ‘waking out' of the trance, from the illusion that keeps us prisoners in the material world.