04 Origin Destiny Of The Soul

An error is commonly made in believing that the soul is something above or superior to that which is conscious in the human.

The fact is that the conscious self in the body is of the doer of the Triune Self and that the "soul" is merely the form of the breath-form or "living soul", which still belongs to nature but which must be advanced beyond nature by the Triune Self. In that sense only is it correct to speak of the need of "saving one's soul".

Concerning the origin of the soul, there are two principal theories:

one is that the soul is an emanation from the Supreme Being or One, as the source of all creatures and from whom all come into existence and into whom all return; the other theory is that the soul comes from a previous existence, either down from a superior state or up from a lower.

There is another belief, current mainly in the West, that each soul lives but one life on earth and is a special, fresh creation furnished by God to every human body brought into the world by a man and a woman.

As to the destiny of the soul after death, the theories are chiefly these: that the soul is annihilated; that it returns to the essence from which it came; that it goes back to the God by whom it was created; that it goes immediately either to heaven or hell; that before going to its final destination it enters a purgatory; that it sleeps or rests until it is resurrected on the Day of Judgment when it is examined and sent forthwith to hell or to paradise.

Then there is also the belief that the soul returns to earth for experience necessary to its progress.

Of these, the belief in annihilation is favored among materialists, while the beliefs in resurrection and in heaven and hell are held by most religions, both of the East and the West.

The religions which teach of emanation and reincarnation include not only the worship of a godhead, but the doctrine of the improvement of the conscious self in the body and the corresponding improvement of the nature-matter with which the embodied self comes into contact.

The religions which are based upon a personal God are primarily for the purpose of glorifying the God, the improvement of the embodied doer being secondary and acquired as a reward for worshipping that God.

The nature of a religion and of its God or gods is indicated unequivocally by the requirements of the worship; and by the symbols, hymns, rites, ornaments, vestments, and edifices that are used in its practice.

No teaching has been generally accepted which states that the individual is solely responsible for whatever happens to him.

This is due to the fact that a vague sentiment of fear, arising from religious teachings, affects all persons who share the notions of the majority of their contemporaries concerning the origin and nature, the purpose and destiny, of the human.

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