Thursday, May 11, 2017

Kolbrin - The Book of gleanings - Chpt 3 - Flood of Atuma

This is an interesting teaching parable showing us a people's response to a natural flood.  We see two completely separate perspectives on the same event emerge, both given divine import.

We learn the folk understanding of large fossils

Yet we also discover here a forgiving spiritual path as well..



Behold, was this not written in the days of our fathers' fathers and of their fathers before them, and given unto us that we should pass it in to you, the children of days yet unborn? That if the ability of the scribe remains with you it could be read in your generation.

Read, O children of the unborn years, and absorb the wisdom of the past which is your heritage. The enlightening words from a past which is to you, in days so far away and yet in Truth so near. 

We are taught that we live forever, and this is true, but it is equally true that no moment of life must be wasted; for each hour and day on Earth is a shaping for the future. We are the inheritors of a portion of time, we can dissipate it on fiitile things or utilize it to our everlasting benefit. In the days of our fathers, before barren teachings clogged the thoughts of men, and vain, formal ritual built a wall which obscured understanding, men walked in the light of Truth. Then they knew there was One God alone, but because they allowed their higher abilities to fall to disuse, they saw less clearly. Because He appeared in different aspects, they thought He was many. 

[ It is astonishing that this is also my present understanding as well.  - arclein ]

Now, in our days, God has many varied forms in the eyes of men and each declares he alone knows the true name and likeness of God. Here all men fall into error, though all have spoken truly according to their understanding. But Truth can never bow to the limited understanding of man, the comprehension of man must expand to grasp it.

In olden times there were spawned great monsters and beasts in fearful form, with frightful gnashing teeth and long ripping claws; an elephant was but a cat in comparison with them. Then, because of heavenly rebellion and turmoil, and the terror overwhelming the hearts of men. The Great One hardened the face of the land, which had become unstable, and the beasts were changed to stone. This was beforetimes, when the Destroyer still slumbered in the upper vaults of Heaven. 

[ there is no better explanation of dinosaurs than this from their perspective.  Again they too saw fossils. - arclein ]

Thus, it is written in the record of Beltshera; In those days the people were wicked and though the wise men among them gave many warnings of the wrath to come, they would not listen, such is the way of the wicked. So it came about that the Chastening Spirit became stirred up against them because of the odour of wickedness arising from the Earth, for her nostrils abhor the smell of evil. This is a smell no man can know, for as the hounds know the smell of fear, which no man can detect, so can other beings know the smell of wickedness. 

[ again the explanation of the evil of man as causation - arclein ]

The great floodgates which are above Earth were all opened. Thus, the floodwaters rose up to cover the land and great rainstorms lashed down. The winds could no longer discover their destinations.

The people left the plain of Shinara and fled up into a great mountain rising above the flatlands below, and here, near the summit, they camped. Feeling themselves secured, the wicked mocked, saying, "No water can ever reach up here, for there is not enough of it in Heaven or Earth". Still the waters rose ever higher and the mouths of the wicked were silenced. The priests of the people danced and chanted in vain, and many rituals were performed to appease the wrath above. 

[ Now this sounds like 'shinar' also used for Sumar or sumaria as we know it.  It also reads like our biblical text except the water now come from above rather than the deep as in Genesis. - arclein]

There came a period of quietness, then the people built a gateway to Heaven wherein the Chief of Interpreters might commune with the Other Realm. He entered into the silence and cast his spirit, and when he had done so it contacted the Chastening Spirit which men call by other names. Her voice was heard within his heart and it said, "I am that which has been called forth by the odour of wickedness arising from the bodies of men, which no incense can disguise. For as the smell of putrefaction assails the nostrils of men, so does wickedness give forth something which assails us in this realm. Wickedness is, therefore, an offence against us. If a man threw filth over the wall into your courtyard, would you not consider this an act of hostility? Could any among you live in harmony with those who were insensitive to your own sensitivity? Thus, I am awakened to happenings in the world of men and am now clothed in a performing substance".

The Spirit being said, "I have no desire to unduly punish men. Go out to the people and tell them that if they will but mend their ways and walk no more in the path of wickedness, I shall depart". But when the Chief of Interpreters returned to the people he found them fearful and distraught, clay in the hands of false priests, devotees of the baleful gods. The false priests were crying out for a sacrifice to their gods and had seized Anis, a young man more handsome than any other, a messenger and runner between cities. Then, though they whispered fearfully among themselves concerning the deed, the people had seized Nanua, handmaiden of Eloma, the Enlightened One, whose life was dedicated to Illana, for she had cried out curses upon their heads when the young man was taken.

Nanua and Anis were held by the false priests and about them surged the great mass of the people, and though the Chief of Interpreters raised his voice it went unheeded. Then the mass of the people moved down to the water's edge and there they stopped while the priests shouted prayers to the gods raging above. All the Heavens were darkened with great rolling clouds and there were high winds and lightning about the mountain top. The people rent their garments, the women wailed and men struck their forearms. Anis was beaten with a club and delivered to the waters.

Then, as he who wielded the club turned towards Nanua, she said to those about her, "Let be, I will deliver myself to the waters, for if I must be sacrificed I would be a better sacrifice so given". Then she went down to the waters, but as her feet entered she drew back from the cold dark watery depths before her. But as the one who wielded the club moved forward, a young man, Sheluat the Scribe, a man of quiet ways, neither handsome nor strong in body, pushed forward and, taking her by the hand, went down into the waters with her.

The waters had risen high and men shared the place where they stood with wild beasts and with sheep and cattle, but now the tumult quietened and the waters drew back. Seeing this, the people shouted praises to the baleful gods and cried out, "Great are the mighty gods, and great their holy priests!"

The Chief of Interpreters went sorrowfully apart, hiding himself, for now he was fearful for his life. When the waters had subsided, he cast his spirit and entered into communion with the Chastening Spirit, and he said.

"Shall I also enter the falling waters as a sacrifice? For life is now futile, as I am without God or honour". The Great One answered, "Men see in events the things they wish to see, they can interpret only according to their understanding. The waters rose to their limitations and did not fall because of the needless sacrifices. The Powers above may ordain events to chasten men, but more often such events are challenges and tests. However, divine intervention is rare indeed".

"These priests follow another, a longer path, but they too condemn wickedness and they too point the way to Truth, though that way may be indirect and beset with hazards. So whether they or you reached the ears of the people the odour of wickedness will be diminished. Divine ends are achieved by diverse means, and the eyes of few men are opened to see either the means or the end".

"Life is never futile, but your sacrifice would be. No man can lose his God, for He is always there; but the prestige of a man because of that God such prestige is a worldly thing of little real value. How do you know whether you have lost or gained? Events of the moment cannot be weighed in the moment, but can be assessed only by the judgement of the years. Only eternity knows whether this or that was good or bad, a gain or loss".

Then the Great One opened the eyes of the Chief of Interpreters, so he saw beyond the earthly border into the realm beyond. Behold, he saw Anis who had been strong and handsome on Earth, and now he was something not pleasant to gaze upon. He saw also the true beauty of Nanua who was now a being of dazzling loveliness, and beside her was Sheluat who had always loved her secretly, and he was now glowing with youth and handsome as Helith. The Chief of the Interpreters then understood that evil could be transmuted into good, and that men had little knowledge of the true nature of things.

Upon the mountain there is now a grove of trees and a temple built in the form of a circle of white stones, where the people remember the day of their deliverance. But what they recall and what happened are not the same, nor is the cause in their minds the true cause. They say, "We are the children of Atuma who saved us". Many who have gone often to the Temple of Deliverance say they have seen two shades, one radiantly beautiful and one gloriously handsome, wandering hand in hand through the trees or sitting in the sunlit glades. All about is now a place of peace.

Men walk under the shadow of dread and fear of unknown powers fills their hearts. They have fashioned images in the likeness of the things which frighten them in the gloom of their ignorance, and they spurn the real for the unreal. Did they see more clearly they would know that the things they fear are but gentle and sturdy hands which can lead them to fields of contentment. 

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