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The Soul and the Substance of Existence: Selections from “The Perfect Way or The Finding of Christ” by Dr. Anna Kingsford (vegetarian), Part 1 of 3

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Dr. Anna Kingsford, an outstanding English Theosophist of the 1880s, was said to be clairvoyant from the time she could speak. Dr. Kingsford continued with her inner spiritual and mystical experiences, which she documented in several books, in collaboration with long-time friend Edward Maitland. We now share with you selections from the book, “The Perfect Way or The Finding of Christ.” The Second Lecture, The Soul and the Substance of Existence Part II. “The soul, or permanent element in man, is first engendered in the lowest forms of organic life, from which it works upwards, through plants and animals, to man. Its earliest manifestation is in the ethereal or fluidic material called the astral body; and it is not something added to that body, but is generated in it by the polarisation of the elements. Once generated, it enters into and passes through many bodies, and continues to do so until finally perfected or finally dissipated and lost. The process of its generation is gradual. The magnetic forces of innumerable elements are directed and focused to one centre; and streams of electric power pass along all their convergent poles to that centre, until they create there a fire, a kind of crystallisation of magnetic force. This is the Soul, the sacred fire of the hearth, called by the Greeks Hestia, or Vesta, which must be kept burning continually.” “The clearest understanding may be obtained of the soul by defining it as the Divine Idea. Before anything can exist outwardly and materially, the idea of it must subsist in the Divine Mind. The soul, therefore, may be understood to be divine and everlasting in its nature. But it does not act directly upon Matter. It is put forth by the Divine Mind; but the body is put forth by the astral, or ‘fiery,’ body. As Spirit, on the celestial plane, is the parent of the soul, so Fire, on the material plane, begets the body. The plane on which the celestials and creatures touch each other, is the astral plane.” “The soul, being in its nature eternal, passes from one form to another until, in its highest stage, it polarises sufficiently to receive the spirit. It is in all organised things. Nothing of an organic nature exists without a soul. It is the individual, and perishes finally if uninformed of the spirit.”
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