THE FALL OF MAN
GENESIS 3, 4, and 5
Mysteries of Genesis
ACCORDING to the Bible, “the word of God” is the power that created the world, as stated in Hebrews:
“By faith we understand that the worlds have been framed by the word of God, so that what is seen hath not been made out of things which appear.”
The 1st chapter of John explains that “the Word” was in the beginning with God and was God and that through the Word all things were made. So it is not true to say that the Bible is “the creative Word” of God. The Christ in Jesus is the creative Word. Spiritual man is the Word of God, and the Bible bears “witness of the word of God.” As Jesus taught: “Ye search the scriptures because ye think that in them ye have eternal life; and these are they which bear witness of me; and ye will not come to me, that ye may have life.”
Man fell because he did not keep his mind on the source of life. He departed from spiritual consciousness and saw both good and evil. If he had held to the one good, good is the only thing that he could have manifested.
The Word of God is the living, creative force that is man’s spiritual mind. As Jesus said to those Jews who searched the Scriptures for eternal life: “Ye have not his word abiding in you.”
Those who search the Scriptures and think that through them they will get life are, according to Jesus, ignoring the omnipresent creative word and separating themselves from its perfect manifestation, man.
Man is falling just to the extent that he is ignoring the living Word in himself. Man must keep affirming the living Word; then he will have the transformed body.
Jesus Christ is the Word demonstrated as perfect man, and through Him we are saved from the fall. In these words we find an epitome of both the law and the gospel.
The Bible is at the same time the simplest and the greatest of all books. It is great because it deals with great matters in simple ways. It eliminates the transient, unnecessary temporalities and goes direct to the gist of the subject.
We have not understood the depth and height of these simple allegories and symbols sprinkled all through the Bible. They are condensed explanations, stripped of minor details, of the great underlying laws of existence. A mortal description of creation would make time a necessary element, but the author of Genesis is not caught in this trap of mortality. “In the beginning God created.”
Time is a human invention and acts as a barrier to a broader conception of creative processes. All attempts to find a date for the beginning of man are futile. Years are associated with events, and when the events are past the years go with them. States of mind make events, and new states of mind are constantly being formed; consequently every moment is the beginning of a new creation to the individual. It is of no practical value to a man to know that the world has journeyed around the sun six thousand or six million years since it was formed. The important thing is to know where man stands in relation to the creative law. The Bible puts history before us as if we were part of every event, which we are. The one Mind is moving in its realm of ideas “over all, and through all, and in all.”
The allegory of the Garden of Eden, of the man and the woman and the serpent, represents the development of ideas in individual consciousness, not the development of a planetary system. The latter is the narrow conclusion of the casual observer. Creation is the evolution of ideas in mind. Creation is the development of individuality; hence the one object of all creative processes is the making of man.
In the development of individuality the factors described in the allegory are active in every one of us at this moment, and the creating is going on right now. The reason why God created man potentially perfect and then set him the task of proving it is found in the mysterious process called self-identification. Man makes himself after the pattern designed by the Great Architect. In proving his ability to carry out the divine plan he proves himself perfect.
As we study mind we find that every thought tends to find expression; that the formless and the formed go hand in hand; that you cannot have an idea in your mind without its immediately taking form as a mental picture, which in due course is clothed upon with substance and life, “a local habitation and a name.”
Three fundamental factors are at the basis of all manifestation, namely intelligence, life, and substance.
Divine intelligence reveals perfect ideas as the basis of existence. Any conception other than this is “eating” or appropriating thoughts that seem both good and evil. This conception of opposites leads to all kinds of inharmonies. It is the “serpent,” “more subtle than any beast of the field,” that suggests this to man. The serpent represents life, in which is vibration, color, sound, in fact all sensation. Sense consciousness is another name for the serpent. The word sensation, either written or spoken, suggests the sinuous movement and warning hiss of the serpent. The life idea is manifest in the sinuous shape of the mighty lightning chain darting from sky to earth as well as in the subtle sensations that sweep through the soul.
The soul (Eve) is attracted by this realm of sensation and is psychologized by its promises of pleasure. It is a “delight to the eyes,” is “good for food,” is to be desired to make one wise. When we indulge any of the sensations of the flesh for the mere pleasure that accompanies the indulgence, we are following the delusive suggestions of the serpent instead of listening to the word of God. Pain, disease, and finally death always result from such ignorant trangression of the divine daw.
Life is a fundamental factor in all existence. The most vital word in any or all languages is “life.” Without life there could be no existence. In man’s estimation life is so great a thing that he often uses the word “living” as representing all existence. But life is not all of existence. Love, substance, power, intelligence, these all play their part; and above all is man, spiritual man.
When man riots in the realm of ideas (“birds of the heavens”) and loses sight of God in the pursuit of his art, he becomes unbalanced. This applies to all who are so enamored of the outer that they lose dominion over the inner.
When man fails to master his sensations and gives himself up to the uncontrolled enjoyment of life, he is losing his dominion and must suffer the consequences of transgressing the law. Listen to the voice of wisdom and keep a steady rein on “every beast of the field”: the life forces in the natural world.
Man should therefore be ever on the alert to maintain his dominion and mastery over all the ideas of the mind and sensations of the body. The wise man never gives himself up to pleasure seeking in the world or in his body. Everything has its use in the divine economy, and man as the master builder should ever be seeking to carry out the divine plan.
In considering a practical application of this allegory, let every man ask himself, Am I entangled in the coils of the serpent of sense? The Scripture says that the serpent was the most subtle of all the beasts of the field that the Lord God created. That subtle sensuous feeling that thrills you is the beast of the field. The elemental life forces of your body are minute serpents. The reproductive elements in your body are in the form of minute serpents. These serpents are very obedient to your thought. By thinking about some sense pleasure you can concentrate them in the function of life giving, and they will blend all their energies to give you pleasure. But remember that in so doing you may be robbing some other function of its life, and it will deteriorate in consequence.
The person who gives up to the pleasures of sex eats from the tree of life until the body is depleted in every function; even sex itself dies of its own ignorance.
What is the remedy? Conservation, mastery, control. Man must control every one of the elemental forces of his being. In other words, instead of being tempted by the devil of sensation, instead of yielding completely to the pleasure of living, he must study the object of life as a whole.
There are two ways of living open to man. One is Satan’s way: through experience of evil man gains by contrast a concept of good. The other is God’s way: through consciousness of good, man sees that evil is unreal and unnecessary. Every man and woman in the world is following one or the other of these two courses in the development of his individuality. Good and evil seem to be pitted against each other in the world, but it is not necessary for man to eat of the tree of good and evil; he need not have a knowledge of evil in order to realize the allness of good. If he follows God’s way, which is to know the good first, last, and always, his mind will become so charged with good that evil will be to him totally unreal.
You will find men on every side meeting temptation in God’s way, by knowing the good, affirming the good, and living it according to their faith in God. I know men who have never taken a drink of whiskey. They have not found it necessary to become intoxicated in order to experience the feeling of sobriety. They have better dominion over their appetites than those who have given up to Satan’s way of experience. There are men in the world who are living a pure life. They know the joy of purity in the sex dominion. They have proved that dominion over sex, under the guidance of Spirit, is a necessary part of the regeneration taught by Jesus. “For there are eunuchs, that were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are eunuchs, that were made eunuchs by men: and there are eunuchs, that made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake.”
Gen. 3:1-5. Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, Of the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat: but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil.
The serpent is sense consciousness. It may also be called desire, sensation, or the activity of life in external manifestation apart from the divine source of life. “Woman” represents love or feeling in the individual consciousness and symbolizes the soul. Desire for sensation or activity in the external first tempts the soul, the center of feeling and emotion. The temptation of sense is at first very subtle, entering the consciousness to stir up doubt and slyly asking the question “Why not?”
From the center of one’s being the life-giving, ever-bearing tree of the Spirit of God spreads its branches into every department of mind and body. Its fruits are intelligence to the mind, substance to the body, and life to the entire being. The warning given by Jehovah God was that man should not eat of (appropriate) the fruit of this tree. In spiritual revelation we discern that man’s cardinal mistake is to appropriate the pure essence of God in order to experience selfish sensuous pleasure.
The serpent is slyly suggesting to the soul that it indulge in the pleasures of sense and that the experience will result in a deeper understanding of God and His laws. The individual can always find arguments that to his own mind justify indulgence. This tendency may be described as sensation beguiling man from his Garden of Eden consciousness.
Gen. 3:6-7. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; and she gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat. And the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig-leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
Woman, the intuitive or feeling side of man’s nature, discerns that activity in ideas begets knowledge, but the knowledge gained is not necessarily of a divine nature. Love or feeling (woman) acting independently of wisdom (man) is not reliable.
The “eyes” are the perceptive faculty of mind, and unless the perception is established in Truth one sees or perceives duality. When one delights in knowledge that is less than Truth, one’s capacity to receive inspiration direct from Divine Mind is lessened or lost. Both love (woman) and wisdom (man) become involved in a counterfeit knowledge through “eating” ideas inappropriate to the divine nature.
In the Scriptures figs are representative of the “seed” of man. This seed is in its original essence mind energy, and when ideas are kept in contact with Divine Mind, the seed of man is the life stream in its original purity. Man’s sin is the misappropriation of ideas, which leads to sensation. When man and woman are joined–that is, one in sin–they are unclothed of the garment of Truth or “naked.”
When wisdom and love, man and woman, are joined in the consciousness that God inspires all their thoughts and acts, the gross sensations of the flesh will be “lifted up,” that is, glorified. “I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto myself.” This is the “holy marriage.”
Gen. 3:8-12. And they heard the voice of Jehovah God walking in the garden in the cool of the day; and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Jehovah God amongst the trees of the garden. And Jehovah God called unto the man, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
The “cool of the day” represents the relaxation or emptiness that follows sense expression. After the high tide of sensation has subsided, the voice of Jehovah God, commonly called conscience, is heard. Man is convinced that he has acted out of harmony with divine law. After experiencing sensation the picture visualized by the conscious mind is impressed on the life stream and sets up a subconscious tendency. Consciousness would hide from facing this situation, taking refuge amongst the “trees of the garden” (other sensations), but this is not the way to redemption. Every idea is to be dealt with. All error is forgiven when Truth is brought to bear on it, and if this method is pursued, only constructive thought habits will be put into activity in the subconscious realm of mind.
Jehovah God walks continually in the garden (the body) calling unto Adam (life), and when man raises his thoughts and feelings Godward, he contacts the inspiration of Being and builds again the immortal consciousness.
The soul or “woman” is the feminine aspect of man. It is through the affections (love) that man becomes involved in sensation. When a desire of the soul (woman) presses for attention, man often gives way to his feelings instead of raising them, through wisdom, to conform to higher principles.
In Truth feeling must be disciplined and refined and desire for sense pleasure eliminated. When consciousness is purified through the knowledge of Truth and thought force is established in harmonious relation to divine ideas, the woman (feeling) will be joined with man (wisdom) and the holy marriage (generation of divine ideas) will again be consummated. “Therefore shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh,” writes the author of Genesis, and Jesus verifies it in Matthew 19:5: “For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh.” Indescribable joy is the heritage of those who submit their sex relations to God in prayer.
Gen. 3:13-14. And Jehovah God said unto the woman, What is this thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. And Jehovah God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, cursed art thou above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life.
Man, ever seeking an excuse for sin, puts the blame on God for endowing him with sensation. Sensation is itself a divine creation, and all God’s creation was pronounced “good.” This brings us to the root cause of the appetite that craves stimulants and goes to excess in seeking satisfaction. Through listening to the serpent of sense, man goes beyond the limit set by natural or divine law and becomes a glutton and drunkard of sensation. The remedy is for him to take up the problem from a spiritual standpoint in the knowledge that sensation is a mental quality that can be satisfied only by his cultivating the spiritual side of his nature.
When the desire for sensation leads man to dissipate the precious fruit of the tree of life in his earthly garden, the whole nervous system is depleted and loses its capacity to contact the higher life current and supermind wisdom. Then man feels a lack of something; he is “naked.” Sensation is no longer a heavenly ecstasy but a fleshly vibration, and crawls on its “belly,” eating “dust” all the days of its life.
We often wonder why God cursed the serpent since He created him for the very purpose of enabling man to have sensation. The author of Genesis discerned that certain principles were in operation; that when the creative life which Jehovah God breathed into man’s nostrils was taken away, there would be a fall from divine union and man would have to suffer certain conditions that would follow. So the curse was not imposed directly by Jehovah but as a result of man’s breaking certain laws.
Gen. 3:15-19. And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed: he shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy pain and thy conception; in pain thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in toil shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
The seed of the woman is from God; it is the spiritual life that comes from the fountainhead. The seed of the serpent is fallen sense consciousness, and there is enmity between the two. The effect, as set forth in the text describing the suffering common to most women, needs no metaphysical interpretation. The interpretation usually given is that the “seed” that bruised the head of the serpent was Jesus. But these verses were written long before the time of Jesus, so they must refer to certain principles. The heel represents the activity of the will in the body. When one is willful the tendency is to force the heel into the ground. When you do that you are determined.
When you make up your mind that you are not going to be governed by your sensations, you plunge the whole man into spiritual consciousness, through which you are protected from sense. All through the account of the fall of man are found these promises of redemption, implications that man has within him a saving consciousness.
The story of Eve symbolizes the truth that instead of bringing forth ideas in the realm of supersubstance, the feminine is compelled to clothe its ideas with flesh and bring them forth in the earthly consciousness.
Having lost consciousness of God as its guiding light, the soul turns to its highest concept of wisdom, the intellect (husband).
The intellect, having lost contact with its inner light, is no longer possessed of the ability to ideate direct from God, and man is forced to cultivate the ground and toil physically. Jesus demonstrated man’s spiritual ability when, direct from the ether as a substance base, He produced the fishes and loaves to feed more than five thousand persons.
Gen. 3:20. And the man called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.
The name Eve means “elemental life,” “life,” “living.” Eve represents the soul region of man and is the mother principle of God in expression through which life is evolved. The I AM (wisdom) puts feeling into what it thinks, and so Eve (feeling) becomes the “mother of all living.” Back of feeling is the pure life essence of God. Adam and Eve symbolize the I AM individualized in life and substance. They are the primal elemental forces of Being itself.
The Hebrew verb hoh, “to be being” luminous, absolute life, which forms the basis of the name Ihoh (Jehovah) is the basis also of the word Eve; however, due to a slight change in characters and a hardening of the vowels, it no longer represents absolute life, but the struggle of elementary existence. This indicates the struggle of the soul to regain its perfect state of existence in the Absolute, God.
Gen. 3:21. And Jehovah God made for Adam and for his wife coats of skins, and clothed them.
Man originally was connected with the warm currents of spiritual life, but when these currents were broken by thoughts of separation, he required protection from external invading thoughts, hence the “coats of skins.” This need is evidenced by the outer skin covering the sensitive nerves of our body and the danger of infection when this covering is broken. When spiritual thought becomes supreme in consciousness the “coat of skins” gives way to the manifestation of the spiritual body spoken of by Paul. Corruptible flesh is the manifestation of corrupt ideas in mind. “Be ye transformed [changed in form] by the renewing of your mind.”
Gen. 3:22-24. And Jehovah God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever–therefore Jehovah God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden the Cherubim, and the flame of a sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.
“Jehovah God” is Divine Mind identified as the Christ Mind or I AM man. “Good and evil,” primarily representing the two poles of Being, are opposite but not adverse to each other. Man developed divine consciousness–came into an understanding of ideas in their relation to Being itself–and when he became involved so intensely in the feeling or negative side of his nature, he lost consciousness of the equilibrium of the Christ Mind. Will became independent of wisdom, and an unbalanced condition in both mind and body was set up. And “lest he put forth his hand [appropriating power of mind], and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever,” using the forces of Being toward the expression of a consciousness adverse to the Christ Mind, omnipresent wisdom closed the door to the within until man should again enter into the “garden” by establishing the divine consciousness, Christ, the Way.
The “garden” symbolizes the spiritual body in which man dwells when he brings forth thoughts after the pattern of the original divine ideas. This “garden” is the substance of God. “Eden” is a state of perfect relations among the ideas of Being. The “garden of Eden” is the divine consciousness. Having developed a consciousness apart from his divine nature, man must “till the ground from whence he was taken”–that is, come into the realization of God as the substance of his being–and express ideas in harmony with Divine Mind. Wisdom and love are joined in God, and a perfect balance is struck in consciousness between knowing and feeling when man spiritualizes his thoughts.
The “east” is the within. “Cherubim” refers to protection of the sacred life. The inner spiritual life is protected from the outer, coaser consciousness. The “flame of a sword” is the divine idea or Word of God. Man unites with the inner Word or sacred life through the Christ Mind.
Gen. 4:1-2. And the man knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man with the help of Jehovah. And again she bare his brother Abel, and Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.
The story of Cain and Abel is an allegory of the movement of certain departments of the soul or consciousness. The name Cain means “possession.” This refers directly to that part of human consciousness which strives to acquire and possess selfishly. Cain was a tiller of the soil, which shows that he is of the earthly domain. The name Abel means “breath,” which places Abel in the air or spiritual realm. The two are brothers, that is, are closely related in the consciousness. Abel does not represent the high spiritual consciousness but the life energy that controls the animal functions: he was a sheep raiser. The Hindu metaphysics would call Abel the animal soul and Cain the physical body. Paul would call Abel the “creature” and Cain “the flesh.”
Gen. 4:3-4a. And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto Jehovah. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof.
Making sacrifices unto Jehovah is symbolic of a refining process that is constantly going on in consciousness. Jehovah is the one universal Mind, which is the receptacle of all ideas and receives all. When you have a thought of love and good will, you set free invisible emanations that are impregnated with these ideas. These ascend to a higher realm and form a part of your spiritual soul, at the same time relating you to Jehovah, who is the presiding oversoul of the race. This is the inner meaning of the offering of sacrifices to Jehovah.
Everything in nature is going through this refining process, and there is a constant ascension of substance to mind and of mind to Spirit. We are taught that a time will finally come when the whole universe will be resolved back into its original essence in God.
Gen. 4:4b-15. And Jehovah had respect unto Abel and to his offering: but unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. And Jehovah said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou doest well, shall it not be lifted up? and if thou doest not well, sin coucheth at the door; and unto thee shall be its desire; but do thou rule over it. And Cain told Abel his brother. And it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him. And Jehovah said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper? And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground. And now cursed art thou from the ground, which hath opened its mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand; when thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee its strength; a fugitive and a wanderer shalt thou be in the earth. And Cain said unto Jehovah, My punishment is greater than I can bear. Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the ground; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer in the earth; and it will come to pass, that whosoever findeth me will slay me. And Jehovah said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And Jehovah appointed a sign for Cain, lest any finding him should smite him.
The thoughts of the mind are nearer to the Spirit than are the emanations of the body. Hence the offering of Abel (mind) was more acceptable to Jehovah than was that of Cain (body). The killing out of all human sympathy and love by the body selfishness is the slaying of Abel by Cain. When the body demands possession of all the resources of mind, it reduces existence to mere material living; it has slain Abel, whose blood of life then cries from the earthly consciousness (ground) to Jehovah for expression.
When the selfishness of the body has killed out the finer impulses of the mind and reduced all the higher aspirations to a material level of existence, there is no longer any pleasure in living. Without the mind the body is a mere machine with little sensation and makes no progress. Cain thus tills the ground, but it yields him no strength.
The body feels its degradation, and those who get into this degraded condition are usually miserable. Thus Cain’s punishment is great. He fears the vengeance of the other faculties; fears that they may condemn the body (Cain) for its impotency. But Jehovah, divine law, has fixed a limit to this condemnation, and we are warned that we must not destroy the body, however great its sins. This mark set upon Cain to prevent his being slain is man’s consciousness of his divine origin. No matter how deep the body ego may be in transgressions, it still bears the stamp of God and can never be killed out entirely. We cannot kill life, for it is eternal; but we can allow the body ego (Cain) to kill the consciousness of life within the individual organism.
Every man, by his example and word, is his brother’s keeper. Jesus said, “Even so let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” This does not nullify the innate freedom of your brother, but rather strengthens your ability to co-operate with the good and make it manifest in your life.
Gen. 4:16-24. And Cain went out from the presence of Jehovah, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch. And unto Enoch was born Irad; and Irad begat Mehujael; and Mehujael begat Methushael; and Methushael begat Lamech. And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah. And Adah bare Jabal: he was the father of such as dwell in tents and have cattle. And his brother’s name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and pipe. And Zillah, she also bare Tubal-cain, the forger of every cutting instrument of brass and iron: and the sister of Tubal-cain, was Naamah. And Lamech said unto his wives: Adah and Zillah, hear my voice;
Ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech:
For I have slain a man for wounding me,
And a young man for bruising me:
If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold,
Truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.
After he had killed Abel, Cain went out from the presence of Jehovah (the body consciousness lost its contact with its spiritual source) and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. After any positive action of the mind there is always an apparent negative reaction. Nod, a name meaning “wandering with uncertainty,” suggests the seemingly unguided activity of man’s subconsciousness during periods of sleep. The fundamental idea in the word Nod is that of uncertainty of mind, bewilderment.
The name Enoch means “founder,” “centralizer.” Metaphysically it denotes entrance into and instruction in a new state of thought or understanding.
The name Irad means “self-leading passion,” “blind whirling.” Irad represents a state in the physical or body consciousness and organism of man, the embodiment of the stubborn, foolish, destructive, devouring–yet transitory and fleeting–emotions and desires that are the result of the sense man’s ignorant, confused thoughts and beliefs.
The name Mehujael means “manifestation of strength,” “physical demonstration of power.” Metaphysically Mehujael represents the belief of the outer man that strength and power are purely physical. This belief leads to error manifestations and demonstrations of power and strength that always lead to trouble of some kind; and the outer, personal man usually attributes to God the afflictions and griefs that are the result of his own error activities.
The name Methushael means “man of God.” Metaphysically Methushael denotes the idea that man is a spiritual and perfect being, which is inherent even in the body consciousness of man (Cain and his descendants represent the body or physical consciousness). Methushael also denotes the error thought of death, of the disintegration of the outer organism that unenlightened man thinks is desirable, inevitable, of God.
The name Lamech means “strength,” “health,” “power.” Metaphysically Lamech represents the thought of strength and youth that is carnal and physical.
The name Adah means “beauty or comeliness,” “adornment,” “pleasure.” Metaphysically Adah symbolizes a phase of the human soul, the love nature. Love even in limited personal consciousness and expression has its pleasing aspect (“pleasure”). The expression of it adorns one with a certain beauty of character and a grace and comeliness that are lacking in persons who are wanting in love.
The name Zillah means “deep,” “darkness, gloom, or shadow,” “screened,” “veiled,” “protected.” Zillah represents the very great or dense obscurity of thought regarding his true spiritual nature and capabilities that exists in the soul of the individual who is still living wholly in the outer or sense consciousness. Lack of true and clear understanding at this phase of unfoldment is a protection to the individual in that it shields or screens him from experiences that he is not yet able to meet yet would have to face if it were possible for the full light of Truth to enter his consciousness at this time.
The name Jabal means “a stream,” “a welling up,” “abundance.” Jabal represents the transitoriness of the outer, physical character of the man who dwells in the animal-strength consciousness. The negative aspects of the name–“wanderer,” “passing away,” “going out”–all imply lack of permanence. The word cattle refers to animal strength. Stream means the “life flow.”
The name Jubal means “principle of sound,” “harmony,” “melody.” Jubal “was the father of all such as handle the harp and pipe”; in other words, metaphysically he represents a principle of harmony, which might find expression in musical instruments. Thus Jubal symbolizes the natural rhythm, harmony, and joy of life that are experienced when the soul radiates grace, beauty of thought and character, and comeliness (Adah, mother of Jubal), and the body is healthy and strong.
The name Tubal-cain means “diffusion of Cain,” “diffusion of worldly possessions,” “flowing of centralized might.” Cain represents the sense selfishness centered by an individual in his own physical being. Tubal-cain denotes a broadening out of the selfishness represented by Cain, or the same selfishness operating on a broader, more universal base. Tubal-cain is sometimes said to have been the inventor of the art of forging metals into cutting instruments.
The name Naamah means “amity,” “social unity,” “grace,” “sweet or pleasant.” Metaphysically Naamah represents the animal soul in pleasing, harmonious combination with youth even though the consciousness here is of the strength and youth of the outer man.
Gen. 4:25-26. And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For, said she, God hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel; for Cain slew him. And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enosh. Then began men to call upon the name of Jehovah.
The third son of Adam and Eve, Seth, was born after the death of Abel. The name Seth means “compensation,” “substituted”; but more particularly it carries the idea of settled, placed, set. The root idea is that of surrounding sympathetic forces which envelop a thing and define its limits. Some mystics have seen in the meaning of the name a reference to the law of destiny: that which predetermines a thing and settles the order of its occurrence.
While man is in a sense a creature of free will, yet in a larger sense he is a son of God, made in His image and likeness and destined to express and demonstrate spiritual perfection. There is in all the universe, including man, a balancing power of good, of protection, that causes readjustment and healing to supervene after every transgression of law or wandering away from that which is wholesome and true. This is set forth very clearly in Bible symbology and history. Every time man has wandered away, gone to some extreme, he has experienced a reaction and been led back to a saner standpoint. It is thus that he evolves and grows into a full consciousness of his perfect good. His growth in Christlikeness is greatly accelerated however when he comes into a knowledge of the Truth that makes him free, and begins to think and act consciously and voluntarily in harmony with it.
The spiritual idea killed out by the carnality of Cain (represented by his slaying of Abel) was reincarnated or reborn in another spiritual idea (identified with the personality of Seth), as compensation for the loss of the original concept.
“And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enosh. Then began men to call upon the name of Jehovah.” The name Enosh means “a miserable man,” “mortal man.” When man comes to the end of his personal resources and sees the nothingness of all his efforts in the outer, apart from Spirit, he begins to look for a higher ideal to express in his life. He calls on the name of Jehovah. It is the activity of the awakening spiritual ideas within him (Seth) that causes him first to realize the futility of his human efforts to better himself, and then to recognize the one Source of all true uplift and good.
Gen. 5. This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; male and female created he them, and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created. And Adam lived a hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth: and the days of Adam after he begat Seth were eight hundred years: and he begat sons and daughters. And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died.
And Seth lived a hundred and five years, and begat Enosh: and Seth lived after he begat Enosh eight hundred and seven years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years: and he died.
And Enosh lived ninety years, and begat Kenan: and Enosh lived after he begat Kenan eight hundred and fifteen years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Enosh were nine hundred and five years: and he died.
And Kenen lived seventy years, and begat Mahalalel: and Kenan lived after he begat Mahalalel eight hundred and forty years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Kenan were nine hundred and ten years: and he died.
And Mahalalel lived sixty and five years, and begat Jared: and Mahalalel lived after he begat Jared eight hundred and thirty years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred and ninety and five years: and he died.
And Jared lived a hundred sixty and two years, and begat Enoch: and Jared lived after he begat Enoch eight hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Jared were nine hundred sixty and two years: and he died.
And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah: and Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty and five years: and Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.
And Methuselah lived a hundred eighty and seven years, and begat Lamech: and Methuselah lived after he begat Lamech seven hundred eighty and two years, and begat sons and daughters: and all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty and nine years: and he died.
And Lamech lived a hundred eighty and two years, and begat a son: and he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us in our work and in the toil of our hands, which cometh because of the ground which Jehovah hath cursed. And Lamech lived after he begat Noah five hundred ninety and five years, and begat sons and daughters: And all the days of Lamech were seven hundred seventy and seven years: and he died.
And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
The name Adam means “red,” “ruddy,” “firm.” Adam is the first man of the human race according to the Bible. Metaphysically Adam represents the first movement in the evolution of the man idea in its contact with life and substance. Adam also represents generic man; that is, the whole human race epitomized in the typical individual-man idea.
Adam in his original state was a spiritually illumined creation. Spirit breathed into him continually the necessary inspiration and knowledge to give him superior understanding. But he began “eating” or appropriating thoughts of two powers: God and not-God, good and evil. The result, so the allegory runs, was that he fell away from spiritual life and all that it involves.
Man is Spirit, absolute and unconditioned; but man forms an Adamic consciousness into which he breathes the breath of life; this, in its perfect expression, is the Son of man, the expression of the divine idea. This Adam is all of what we term soul, intellect, and body. We are continually at work with this Adam; we can breathe into his nostrils the breath of life, insiring him with the idea of life in all its unlimited fullness. We can lift up this Adam by infusing into him this sublime idea, and in no other way.
The name Seth means “substituted,” “settled,” “compensated.” Seth represents the root idea of surrounding sympathetic forces.
The name Enosh means “transient man,” “mortal man.” Enosh represents the outer or body consciousness in its limited, material, corruptible concept of the organism.
The name Kenan means “self-centered one,” “possession invading space.” Kenan denotes the seemingly established materiality of consciousness and organism. But the higher, more spiritual thought represented by Seth is at work, and the man, though seemingly established in materiality, is reaching out of the lesser self (“possession invading space”) and upward toward something that has more power to uplift, enlighten, heal, renew, and restore than anything to be found in the material. Thus Kenan brings forth Mahalalel.
The name Mahalalel means “mighty rising,” “glory of brightness,” “praise of God.” Metaphysically Mahalalel denotes that in man which praises and blesses and glorifies God, the good.
The name Jared means “descending,” “low country.” Metaphysically Jared denotes the descent of Spirit through praise and acknowledgment of God (Mahalalel, father of Jared), into the seemingly earthly or physical in man (“low ground”) in order to lift man wholly into spiritual consciousness (Enoch, son of Jared).
The name Enoch means “founder,” “instructor,” “repentance.” Enoch walked with God and did not die. He was translated into the spiritual consciousness. Enoch represents entrance into and instruction in the new life in Christ.
The name Methuselah means “man of the sword,” “sting of death.” Methuselah has the record of having lived in the earthly body longer than any other man. Metaphysically Methuselah denotes a quick, piercing thought or word (“sword,” “dart”) of life, power, and oneness with God, which while it causes a renewal of youth to a degree and serves to lengthen one’s life in the body, does not become abiding enough in the consciousness at the Methuselah stage of man’s unfoldment to put away the appearance of death entirely.
The name Lamech means “strong young man,” “health,” “power.” Metaphysically Lamech represents the strength of youth, the vital something in us that overcomes thoughts and tendencies leading to dissolution. The vital life principle constantly inspires us from within to keep on living. This thought of youth was in Lamech, the father of Noah, and it found expression in Noah. The strength and youth symbolized by the Lamech descended from Adam through Cain is carnal and physical. The Lamech descended from Adam through Seth, which God sent to replace Abel, represents a higher, a more spiritual understanding.
Lamech signifies the principle of life, which not only tends to keep one alive in the body but also brings about the building of a new body and re-entrance into manifest existence for each one who lets go of his consciousness of life in the body for a time.
The name Noah means “rest,” “calm,” “peace.” Noah was the son of Lamech, the “strong young man.” It is in the strength of our youth that we idealize the material and attach our spiritual enthusiasm to the things of sense. But the law of reaction sets in: Noah (rest) finds “favor in the eyes of Jehovah.” If in the strength of your youth you have indulged in the things of sense, the law of spiritual equilibrium (the Lord, Jehovah) is now working itself out in a “rest” and you may have bodily ills. Thus your race of wicked thoughts is drowned and your earth cleansed. Noah can also denote the obedience through which seed for a new state of consciousness is saved. Again Noah represents the consciousness at rest in God (Gen. 6:9). In Genesis 6:10 the sons of Noah represent typical states of mind. Shem (“renowned”) represents the spiritual; Ham (“warm”) represents the physical mind, and Japheth (“extended”) represents the intellect or reason.
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Mysteries of Genesis
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