Spiritual Perspective

In order to have the highest perspective possible in our efforts to understand the elements, it would be useful to refer to the writings of two of India's greatest spiritual teachers, both of whom Dr. Stone contacted in person and who have written extensively about the elements. Maharaj Charan Singh writes:

All that we see with the physical eyes is made up of one or more of the five elements, namely, earth, water, air, fire, and ether; and all these five elements are inimical to each other. But with the help of, or due to, the soul, ... all the five elements are contained and active in the human body, each one manifesting them according to his own karmas — in that proportion, but all the five elements are active, in a greater or lesser degree, in every human body.

He goes on to say that, when the soul leaves the body and this creation, the elements dissociate and return to their sources. It may be deduced that the Sun-sign in astrology is so important since it reveals the most basic attunement of the soul as it manifests on this plane of creation. It is similar to what the clairvoyant Edgar Cayce called "the personality of the soul."

Maharaj Sawan Singh writes that not only the body, but also the mind is "born of the finer essence of the five elements." In his writings, he correlates the elements with the lower chakras (or energy centers) in the body and with various qualities which have to be overcome for spiritual progress: air with greed; water with passion; fire with anger; and earth with attachment. A British writer and clairvoyant, Joan Cooke, has written a book called Wisdom in the Stars in which she likewise expresses the lessons of the elements that the soul must learn to evolve: fiery people need to learn love; watery people peace; air people brotherhood; and earthy people service.

The four elements are also the explanation for much of traditional occult doctrine, as can be clearly seen when the elements are correlated with the various "subtle bodies" or interpenetrating energy fields referred to so often in this field. Dr. Raynor Johnson, the author of many excellent books in the field of parapsychology such as The Imprisoned Splendor and The Spiritual

Path as well as a scientist of international repute, succinctly describes the nature of these subtler fields: "Surrounding the central reality are many vehicles or instruments or bodies — layers of consciousness which permit the individual to have relationships with many worlds or realms of being to which these vehicles are related." The elements are the vitalizing forces of each of these bodies. Water is correlated with the emotional or "astral" body, a type of consciousness dominated by intense yearnings, feeling reactions, and compelling desires. The element air is connected with the mental or "causal" body and represents a type of consciousness attuned to the abstract thought patterns of the universal mind. The earth element is symbolic of the physical body and of an attunement to the world of the physical senses and material forms. The fire element is correlated with the etheric or vital body, which acts as a transformer of the air and water energies to help support the functions of the physical body. The "vital" body is closely related to the physical body and is the same as the "etheric double" energy field so commonly reported in the investigations of parapsychologists.

The fact that the elements represent specific types of consciousness and perception and, as Dr. Raynor Johnson's quote indicates, that they reveal the ability to experience certain realms of being and to tune in to specific fields of life experience has important ramifications that will be dealt with in detail later in this book. First, however, we shall examine the elements in detail, in order to gain a deeper appreciation of what they represent.

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