THE EPOCHS OF THE WORLD
(part from book Initiation by Elisabeth Haich)

I stand before Him. He begins: 'The earth and its inhabitants are not yet conscious of the forces which reach the earth from out of the cosmos and maintain it. Consequently the inhabitants of the earth aren't able to control these forces and transform them at will. The earth receives these radiations from out of the cosmos and is immersed and bathing in these waves of energy. Everything that happens on earth is a direct reaction to the action of these radiations ... a kind of resonance resulting from their inter-action.

'The sun magnifies to a tremendous extent the radiations of the particular constellation in which it stands at any given moment as it radiates its force to the earth simultaneously with the radiations of the constellations concerned.' This fact has a bearing on the way in which the four seasons have come into being.

'The movements of the earth give us the impression not only that the vault of stars is rotating about us, but also that other movements are taking place. One of the most important movements the earth makes is that its axis describes the surface of a cone. Whereas one of the end points of the earth's axis remains relatively fixed, the other describes a circle. Because of this movement, the vernal point in the cosmic wheel is slowly displaced. Seen from the earth, it appears to be moving backward.

The Divine Horus with Pharaoh, Cairo Museum

'The time it takes for the axis of the earth to complete one full conical movement—moving from the vernal point in the zodiacal circle right round to its starting point again—corresponds to 25,920 terrestrial years. We call this a cosmic year. Divided by twelve, this number gives us a cosmic month, mainly 2,160 terrestrial years, the time it takes for the vernal point to move through one zodiacal sign.

'The vibrations from the cosmos have such a great effect on the earth that they even influence world history. The leading ideas in religion, science and art are the result of the radiation of the particular constellation in which the vernal point is moving throughout the course of a cosmic month. The incarnated spirits on earth—that is to say humanity—must always achieve a new epoch by reaching a new milestone in human development and establishing themselves in the ideas of the time.

Elisabeth Haich,
founder of Europe's oldest Yoga school
Swami Vivekananda,
The father Atothis of Elisabeth Haich in old Egypt

'A nation is a group of spirits, the incarnation of certain concentrations of energy. Each epoch brings to the earth a different group of spirits, a different race, and when this race has fulfilled its task of carrying out the new ideas and developing a new civilization for the space of a cosmic month, it leaves the earth in order to develop further on another planet. In every race, of course, there are always individuals who don't quite "make the grade" before the end of the epoch. These remain behind, like the dregs in a drink, and must continue to develop on earth. That's the reason why a nation experiences a sudden decline after achieving a high point in civilization. The highly developed fathers of the nation are followed by degenerate and weak-willed descendants, and the nation which was once greatly esteemed gradually falls into debility and disrepute. These descendants are the dross of the nation which has reached the highest degree of earthly development, become spiritualized, and departed from the earth.

'The material world has come into being because interferences have occurred in the divine creative radiations traversing cosmic space, and these interferences have caused condensations, solidifications, materializations. If the celestial bodies were to receive pure, untransformed vibrations of the divine creative force, this would result in the immediate annihilation of all matter. The fixed stars—the suns—are the great transformers which convert the creative vibrations from all celestial bodies and transmit them in wavelengths and frequencies that are tolerable for the earth. The transformed rays reach us from the fixed stars which form the constellations of the zodiac. Thus when we want to represent the highest divine radiation of energy, we choose the symbolic form of the constellation with the strongest effect on the earth, and this is always the "epoch-making constellation" through which the vernal point is moving at the time.

'We are now living in an epoch in which the vernal point is moving into the constellation of the Bull. God (Ptah) reveals himself to us in the radiation of this constellation, and that's why the divinity manifesting itself in the atmosphere of the earth is represented in the form of a bull, in the form of the divine bull Apis. The complementary constellation of Scorpion-Eagle is represented as I he temptress—a serpent crawling upon the earth—or in the form of the divine falcon Horus. You know that this energy, as long as it is earthly and expresses itself on the low plane binding spirit to matter, is the serpent luring man back Into further incarnations. On the other hand when this force is spiritualized, It helps man to experience, while still in the body, the highest degree of spirituality.

'We use the serpent standing erect as the symbol of initiation, as the mistress of the tree of recognition and knowledge. The initiate is a high-flying eagle who has spiritualized the serpent—the power of the instinctive urge— and manifests it as spiritual power through his intellect. The initiate is thus an instrument of the divinity which reveals itself through the zodiacal sign of the Bull. That's why in our epoch these animals are regarded as "holy animals" throughout the entire world. Now you understand why the initiates change their representations of God to accord with the constellation in which the vernal point falls at any given time. Above and behind all these symbols, of course, there always stands the unmanifested First Cause—divinity resting within itself.

'The constellation of the Bull belongs to the threefold manifestation in which the face of God has an earthly-material effect—contracting, drawing together and hardening. This means that at the present time the forces that build up matter and operate within it are the easiest and most immediately available forces for the inhabitants of the earth to use. Our task is one of conquering matter with matter, that means conquering matter with the energies making up the essence of matter. We use the frequencies of matter, these unseen and immeasurably powerful forces—in other words, the spirit of matter—in order to conquer matter itself. We charge the matter of the ark of the covenant with the entire octave of these energies and thus control the laws of matter—the forces of construction and destruction, materialization and dematerialization—as well as the weight of matter which we can either overcome or increase at will.

'In time our truths will come to flower. But then as celestial movements and changes continue, the earth will gradually move out of these regions in the cosmos in which certain specific energies are working together to produce our present epoch. Little by little certain of these energies will diminish, while new ones come into the picture, and thus the total pattern of vibrations affecting the earth will gradually shift. This means of course that the people being born into life on the earth will be gradually changing. The time will come when they won't understand our truths any more. The symbols and words we use to express the mysteries of the laws of creation will lose their content, becoming empty husks for thousands of years. Mankind will have to learn through new tasks and surmount new obstacles in their accomplishment.

'You already know what is going to happen when the last high priest has initiated the last candidate worthy of our knowledge. After giving this new initiate the ark of the covenant and a staff of life, the last high priest will lock himself and his assistant inside the great pyramid, block the entrance from the inside with a stone fitting into the opening ... then the two of them will dematerialize all our equipment and apparatus and lastly themselves in order to save our secrets from falling into unworthy hands. Meanwhile the last initiate, who will come forth out of a nation destined to create a new epoch in the history of the earth, will salvage the ark of the covenant and his staff of life and have them carried out of this country. He will proclaim to his people the ideas of the new epoch in which the vernal point will move through a constellation of the Ram. The two complementary constellations of the Ram and the Balance will exert the strongest effect during that period.

'Come, my little daughter,' says Ptahhotep, 'Now I'll lay my hand on your head and you will see pictures of times to come.'
Ptahhotep leads me to a couch on which the neophytes, under his guidance, practise the ability of moving their consciousness freely throughout time, intentionally seeking out the past and the future in order to experience them as the present.

Ptahhotep bids me lie down, and no sooner has he laid his hand upon my brow than I get the well-known buzzing and prickly feeling in my head. The very next moment I see pictures which, in the symbolic language of dreams, shows me the significance of events in the distant future.

I see the reception room of the Pharaoh—a strange hall and an unknown Pharaoh who is not an initiate like my father but who has a radiation of a very low degree. Before him are two handsome, dignified men—two brothers with noble, magnificent features. From their radiations I recognize that one is an initiate while the other is only a quick-witted able speaker. The initiate is silent while his brother uses his powers of oratory. He is trying to convince the Pharaoh that he should free their people who are working as slaves in the service of the Pharaoh and let them leave the country under the guidance of these two men. The Pharaoh is hard of heart and refuses. He demands a miracle. Then the brother who is doing the talking takes his staff and casts it on to the ground In front of the Pharaoh. Instantly the staff turns into a serpent crawling over the ground. The Pharaoh calls his magicians to give the men an answer. They too cast their staffs upon the ground and these also turn into serpents. But the first serpent devours all the serpents of the magicians. I interpret the vision. The staff represents the intellect, a powerful instrument. But when the intellect is bound to the earth and made to serve purely material ends, it becomes a serpent crawling on the ground, a wily temptress enticing man to selfishness. The two noble brothers struggle unselfishly for their people. In their hands guile turns into wisdom which destroys all the selfish arguments of the cowardly magicians.

Now the vision changes. The godlessness and selfishness of the Egyptians causes new plagues and afflictions of growing severity. But still Pharaoh does not yield. He still refuses to liberate the people from their bondage. Finally the gravest scourge of all descends upon him. All the first-born of the people and I heir animals, and even of Pharaoh's own household, are killed by the angels of God in a single night. Only those who have eaten of the flesh of the lamb and have written their names with lamb's blood on their doorposts are not killed by the angels.

What does the symbol mean? In the new epoch just coming, the complementary constellations of the Ram and the Balance will be dominant. During the lime when the effect of the Ram constellation has not yet reached full strength, the effect is that of a young ram, in other words a lamb. In their blood, the people following this initiate have forces corresponding to the radiation of the ram constellation. They are the forerunners of the new epoch, the 'chosen people', able to proclaim to humanity the old truths in a new form. Those who have fulfilled their destiny in the old epoch must now go. Their task is over. The angels of God call them home.

Then I see a new vision. The mighty initiate leads his people out of Egypt. And because the Ram is a fiery sign, a pillar of fire moves ahead of him to show him the way. He leads his people out of the spiritual darkness prevailing in Egypt at the end of this epoch. But Pharaoh's heart hardens again. He regrets that he has allowed these people to leave his country in freedom. With his entire army, he starts out in hot pursuit of the refugees. But the great initiate, in order to protect his people, uses his staff of life. He directs against Pharaoh's army the frequencies of ultra-matter which greatly intensify the earth's gravitational force. Suddenly, Pharaoh with all his warriors, chariots, and animals become as heavy as if rooted to the spot where they stand. Their tremendously intensified weight pulls them irresistibly down into the earth. And as all of this takes place on the seashore, the great waves of the sea finally roll over Pharaoh and his entire army.
I am amazed! Not about the effect of the staff of life, but about the animals! I have seen such strange and remarkable animals in Pharaoh's army. Some of them were pulling the warriors' chariots, while others carried warriors on their backs. The animals looked like zebras but were bigger and different in colour—brown, white, grey and even black! I've never seen such animals! Could these be the animals father once spoke about? Magnificent animals they are too!

But the vision changes. The initiate wanders with his people through the 'desert', in the always difficult transitional period between two epochs. Two different ages are never sharply separated from each other but rather flow into each other gradually. Hence there is a transitional period in which the effects of the two constellations—the old and the new—appear to be weakened because of their mutual interference. The old ideas don't satisfy the new generation any longer, while the old generations are unable to accept and assimilate the new ideas. The greater portion of the people turn back to their old, ossified ideas, that is, to the ideas of the constellation of the Bull. But these ideas no longer have the power of a full size bull. On the contrary, greatly weakened, their strength is only that of a little bull, a calf. In the symbolic language of dreams, spirit is always gold, and so in my vision of the future I see the people of the initiate dancing about a golden calf and worshipping it.

In the meantime the great initiate is 'on the mountain' and speaking 'face to face with God'. He is in the very highest state of consciousness, identical with God. He is the bearer of the will of God. It is God's will that he proclaim the new ideas to his people through two religious symbols, the sacrificial lamb, symbol of the constellation of the Ram, and the two tablets with God's ten commandments, symbol of the constellation of the Balance.

The sacrificial lamb is the divine self which, clothed in matter, allows itself to be crucified on the two great beams of the three-dimensional world, time and space, thus giving up its own life in order to save the earth through spiritualizing it.

The two tablets of commandments, like the ones in our temple, on the head of the sacred falcon Horus, symbol of the divine self, the creative principle traversing space, stand as symbols for the inner structure of the self manifesting itself in the soul as moral laws.
For more than two thousand years these divine truths will be the guiding ideas and the religious symbols of the people. These divine truths will be the challenge of the new epoch.

When the initiate brings the finished tablets of commandments and sees his people worshipping the golden calf, he bursts out in such a fit of rage that he dashes the tablets to the ground and smashes them in pieces while he asks God to punish the disobedient people.
Then came venomous serpents, symbols of the temptress, the snake, the driving force of the constellation Scorpion. The serpents fall down out of the sky and bite the people that have worshipped the golden calf. They suffer terribly from the poisonous bites. The initiate takes pity on the hapless people. In the middle of their camp he sets up two beams in the form of a 'T' and he places a brass snake perpendicular to it, with its head up. This is the symbolic representation of the tree of recognition and knowledge, the tree of the serpent. No longer creeping along the ground, but with its head upward, the serpent ceases to be the great temptress enticing people into the body and becomes a symbol of the highest wisdom leading men back into unity, to God. All the sick people who look upon this brass serpent quickly become well again.

Interpreting the vision, I understand that people who cannot or will not accept the ideas of the new era fall ill spiritually. They no longer find their place among people and fall into deep spiritual conflict. They can only be healed by being guided back into the mid-point of their own being where the tree of the serpent stands. When they look upon this tree—without eating of its fruits— they recognize the divine truths without exploiting them for their own selfish purposes, and they are healed. Wisdom and selfless omniscience heal every disease of the soul.

The visions of the future go on. The great initiate leads his people up to the threshold of the new epoch, up to the borders of the promised land. Then he goes up into a mountain and disappears. No one ever finds his body. I know that he has dematerialized himself just like the last initiated high priests have de-materialized themselves with their secret instruments and apparatus in the great pyramid.
The chosen people who are called to proclaim and carry out the ideas of the new epoch wander onward, guarding the wisdom and the secret teaching of their great master. But little by little the ark of the covenant loses its magical power, and there is no initiate left to recharge it with his staff of life ... A cosmic month goes by, and the axis of the earth moves a twelfth of the way around the surface of its conic orbit. Slowly the vernal point passes over into the sign of the Fishes. Once again people are unsettled. They can no longer find truth in the worn out, conventionalized ideas of the previous age. They resemble a herd of sheep without a shepherd. In this transitional period an avatar—a son of God—the great teacher of the coming epoch, is born with the supreme task of revealing the greatest mystery of creation by enabling God to walk incarnate upon the earth.

This son of God is the earthly image of the heavenly sacrificial lamb. Just as the divine cosmic self sacrifices itself, taking upon itself the matter of the three-dimensional world and the everlasting crucifixion of the two great beams of time and space, in this same manner this Son of God who manifests fully the divine self in his human body, must accept the vengeance of the spirit of matter as he undergoes death at the hands of ignorant people.

A person who in his consciousness identifies himself with his body lies in inner darkness and resembles a stable with animals—the animal-physical instincts—living in it. In this stable and in this darkness—just as in the darkness of night—the divine child is born, the consciousness of the self. Two kinds of people recognize the divine child and bow low before him: The plain, simple, unlettered and unlearned who do not yet know the doubting of the intellect and who live in unison with nature, like shepherds for example; and the knowing ones and initiates who have already travelled the long path of the intellect, have overcome their earlier propensity towards intellectual cleverness, and have learned to look at things with their inner sight after the manner of the wise men and mystics in the East.
The religious symbols of the new era are Fishes and the Virgin, the two complementary signs. The son of God chooses his co-workers from other 'fishermen'. He pays the tax he owes to the earth with a golden coin which he takes from the mouth of a 'fish'. He draws forth for humanity the nourishment of his teaching from these two complementary signs. But his teachings are heard by people of varying degrees of development. To those who have already awakened in spirit and have therefore attained the fifth level—the spiritual plane—to these 'five thousand' people he gives all his teachings, the two fishes and the five loaves, the five grains of wheat on the ear in the hand of the virgin in her symbolic representation. But even these 'five thousand' people who are already awakened in spirit cannot completely receive his highest ideas, not even in an entire epoch! Of the nourishment he has given there remain twelve baskets full of remnants. This means that humanity must learn the mysteries of the self in each manifestation of the twelve signs of the zodiac. In order to understand and attain these high truths, humanity needs twelve epochs, twelve ages, that is a full cosmic year—25,000 terrestrial years. To all of those who have only been able to rise in their consciousness up to the fourth plane—the 'four thousand' people—the son of God does not distribute all the truths of the two signs of the zodiac as nourishment but only 'some' fishes and five loaves. But even this 'some' of his ideas is too much for them to eat, and there remain seven baskets of remnants. Materialistic people must first learn the mysteries of the seven planes before they are ready for the cosmic truths of the self.

The sign of the Fishes belongs to the aqueous triangle. Hence in this epoch humanity must stand up to the challenge of water. It must conquer water with water. And before my astonished eyes I see a machine by means of which people make use of the power of water transformed into steam. And I see great ships— like cities!—crossing the sea with enormous speed. They too are driven by the power of water transformed into steam. Mankind passes the test: it conquers water with water.

In medical science too water dominates the picture as a therapeutic agent. Everywhere I see bathing establishments, spas and medicinal baths making use of water for all kinds of cures and treatments: Salt water baths, marsh baths, hot and cold baths, compresses, and many many other applications of water for the curing of physical ills. People even take advantage of the healing power in dew by walking about barefoot in the wet grass.

Then towards the end of this era when the vernal point approaches the next constellation—that of the Water Bearer—people make technical discoveries and inventions based on wave energies. This is one of the early effects of the budding Water Bearer era, an age of technical achievement. The radiation of the Water Bearer constellation, which knows no limitations and sweeps all obstacles out of its path, reveals itself in the ideas and social concepts of humanity. At the end of the era of the Fishes, these new energies cause great revolutions in the places where people react most powerfully to them. I see thousands of people of the ruling class sitting in prison, while a spirit with the characteristics of the new coming era decapitates or otherwise kills countless people of the upper class.

A vision from the time when the energies of the Water Bearer are working with full power shows me that the great teacher of this epoch abolishes all the boundaries between the three dominant religions. With his own person he proves that the inner core of all religions is one and the same truth, one and the same God. The boundary between religion and science disappears too, as people discover that everything, even matter, is a wave movement. They learn that the only differences between manifestations of the spirit and those of matter are differences of frequency, while in its essence everything is only the manifestation of the one, single, prime source of all forces, God. Everything is a wave, just as the symbolic representation of the Water Bearer constellation shows: a supernal being pouring waves out of his pitcher.

The spiritual movements on the earth show this effect. Science discovers the 'wave' theory, and I see countless inventions based on waves. I see pictures of people, landscapes and objects—pictures made by the effect of light waves. I see different kinds of devices which send out waves. Waves penetrate matter and reveal its solidity. There are waves that show what elements are present in the matter of the planets and fixed stars, electric waves, waves of sound, light and smell. Medical science has stopped giving treatments with water in favour of treatments based on waves. All kinds of waves, from infra-red to ultra-violet, short waves and still shorter waves, even more penetrating waves and frequencies ... all in use by science!

The constellation of the Water Bearer belongs to the airy face of God. And mankind conquers the air with air, with energies won from matter in the airy state. I see people moved onward from the steam engine to other machines operated by gas. And then my astonished eyes follow huge locusts high up in the air, made by human hands and carrying people in their bellies! These machines are powered by gas: Air conquers air ...

Through the complementary sign of the Lion people again recognize the strongest manifestation of God on earth. The sun, the great Ra, is again acknowledged as the prime source of all manifestation of earthly energy. Once more people have become sun worshippers, even though not in a religious sense. The influence of the Lion shows itself in another plane too. The effect of the Water Bearer is to abolish all boundaries, all limitations. But the absence of boundaries without a concentrating mid-point means mental disease, spiritual death. The boundlessness of the Water Bearer would affect the unconscious masses as a mental illness running throughout all humanity, causing anarchy and chaos, and destroying everything. Through the complementary sign of the Lion, however, dominion is concentrated in individual persons—dictators —who group the people about themselves and guide them.

In this epoch people discover traffic and intercourse with other planets. Boundaries and obstacles disappear, and with them the isolated state of the earth in cosmic space. And as the boundaries between countries disappear too, all humanity is governed from one centre. 'One stable, one shepherd.' The eternal wheels roll on, and the earth moves into a new epoch, under the sign of the Goat and its complementary constellation, the Crab.

People direct their attention to the earth again, noticing that although their knowledge may be very great, they still know very little about their own marvellous mother, mother earth. In this epoch they solve the problem of conquering earth. The sign of the Goat belongs to the earthly face of God. People design a special machine based on the same principle as that of our ark of the covenant. With it, they control the weight of matter. That is, they can overcome the earth's gravitational pull, or through ultra-material radiations, they can vastly increase it. People communicate with each other directly through the earth—in the depths of the mountains—in short straight lines, instead of taking the long way around the earth. This new machine of theirs radiates an energy which dematerializes everything in front of it, thus moving forward quickly, freely, without let or hindrance. At the same time it spews out condensing and solidifying radiations behind it restoring the matter of the earth to its original condition. People have conquered matter with matter, with the energy of ultra-matter. This enables them to penetrate into the depths of the earth and harness for the service of mankind the enormous forces and energies raging there like primordial volcanoes.

The combination of the two zodiacal signs of the Goat and the Crab has a strong influence on the spiritual life of mankind. The great teacher of this epoch reveals unto man the mystery of the immeasurable sources of power hidden in the depths of the human soul. Those who hold the key to these sources of power possess abilities which the ignorant call 'supernatural'. All over the earth I see public schools where even little children are taught to attain these higher abilities through the kind of exercises which only candidates for the priesthood are permitted to practise in our temples. This high and wonderful knowledge spreads into ever greater circles, reaching ever greater numbers of people.

The visions suddenly pale as I come back to normal consciousness. Still lying on the couch, I'm almost dizzy from the tremendous experiences of the future. Ptahhotep stands in front of me and helps me get up. He ends his instructions for today:

'As you see, my child, the inhabitants of the earth receive their initiation in small groups and then in larger and larger ones, all inter-related one with the other. A person can be initiated individually within his own lifetime, and a nation can receive initiation if it works its way up to the highest level of development and fulfils its task here on earth. Eventually the whole world will receive initiation by completing the full circle of the four faces of God, experiencing step by step all stages of initiation in a systematic development, and finally achieving complete spiritualization—salvation from matter. Measured according to earthly time standards, it will take ages and ages for this development to be achieved. For countless times the earth will have to go through the zodiacal circle, both in terrestrial and cosmic years. I've shown you only the tiniest part of this exceedingly long path of development. The history of mankind on earth is not a matter of accident or happenstance. It's important for you to know that every step of development takes place according to divine providence, following a divine plan. A person can cover this infinitely long way in a single lifetime if he concentrates his will exclusively on this goal.'

As he gives me his benediction, Ptahhotep says, 'Come back again tomorrow; I have important things to tell you.'

Final Preparations

Ptahhoteps Instruction

The Seven Rungs of Jacobís Ladder