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Orthodox Catholic Church of the New Age

The Many Incarnations of a Typical Human Spirit

 
The Story of Tell.

A Modern Mystic’s Views on Reincarnation expressed in narrative Form as "The Story of Tell" together with commentary

The Doctrine of Reincarnation provides an overview of the various aspects of the life of man on earth; the lessons he needs to learn, the debts he needs to pay and the effects of the karma he acquires. We understand that after finishing their animal incarnations, two animal spirits unite in the Spirit Plane to form a human spirit, which then descends to Earth for the first time as a human being. And in this context we recognize the allegory of Adam and Eve for what it is - an account of the descent of a newly human spirit into the physical world for the first time as a human. (Note: Adam and Eve represent the spirit and soul of each human being – not the two animal spirits that united to create that human.)

The newly-human spirit (Adam) is only enabled to contact matter through its "khavah" -  its "life-container" or "Eve", which we call the soul. This is because the soul is more receptive to the inspirations of the Wise Ones (represented by the serpent, symbol of Wisdom) who are sent to lead it into earth life. And perhaps at first reluctantly, the spirit allows the soul to lead it to making contact with mortal existence.

First it draws an Astral Body about itself (represented by the apron of fig leaves) and then God Himself (through its Guardian Angel) provides it with a physical body, (represented by the coat of skins). But once it has made contact with this physical body neither the spirit nor the soul can remain in Eden. Together they enter the physical body as it is being formed within its mother’s womb and in due course a new human being is born on earth.

We know that it lives on earth many times, that in between incarnations it spends time on the Astral Plane and often much longer on the Spirit Plane where it also learns much. We know that it may fall into Hell and climb out again; that it may ascend to Paradise and then fall to a lower place, but we know that ultimately it learns all the lessons of the Physical, Astral and Spirit Planes, and finally achieves the right to enter what Christians call Heaven.

Although individual mystics may offer slightly differing views there is general agreement about this process, at least in broad outline. Most acknowledge that the spirit gradually develops life after life, first learning the basic requirements of being a human, then experimenting with the things of this world, before it first takes an interest in the things of the spirit. Full often it will be tempted, and at times it will fall, sometimes badly, but after each fall it is helped to rise again, and eventually it learns to dedicate its efforts to the service of God and the helping of other mortals. It may still fall many times, but it continues to rise again and eventually it thus earns the right to end its earthly incarnations and pass to a higher state of existence.

Bearing all this in mind, let us place this information into context, and strive to construct the story of a hypothetical average spirit. Of course we know that there is no such thing as an "average spirit". We are all different. Some spirits travel swiftly along the Path – others are tardier. They often turn aside from the straight course and sometimes they even travel directly away from their goal for a period. But despite all these differences there are many experiences which most souls have in common and whilst not losing sight of individuality we will nevertheless construct a history of this hypothetical "average spirit".

We will apply the laws of karma as we know them and the basic outline that the Ancient Wisdom provides and then follow this "average spirit" into earth life. Because he is an "average spirit", he will neither fall terribly low in Hell, nor race at break-neck speed towards perfection. He will make merely "average" progress. But we will trace the journey of this "average spirit" from his initial entry into human existence to the point where he is found worthy to pass to the first of the Celestial Realms.

We will follow him from Earth life to the Astral Plane, then on to the Spirit Plane in life after life. We will see him struggle through each of the four Major Sections of the Spirit Plane, which are most readily distinguished by the level of brightness of the spiritual light in each.

The lowest of these, the Realm of Unbelief, is usually known as Hell, and it is the Realm of Darkness. The next; the Realm of Half-Belief, is sometimes called the Land of Twilight or Purgatory. The third Section, the Realm of Belief without Works is also known as Purgatory, and to distinguish it from the lower Realm is sometimes called the Land of Morning Light. The fourth and highest section, the Realm of Belief with Works, is also called Paradise or the Land of the Noon-day Sun.

The "average spirit" of our story will spend time in each of these Realms and in most of their various subdivisions or "sets", before at length having learned the lessons of the human state on the Physical, Astral and Spirit Planes he no longer needs to return to mortal existence and is permitted to pass higher. Obviously this "average spirit" will be known by many different names in his various incarnations, but they are of little interest to us and to avoid confusion we will use the same name throughout. Perhaps we could name him "Tell" because of the wondrous tale he can "tell".

Then, after the tale is concluded we will analyze his experiences to see what they can teach us about our own lives.  Here then, is the;

 

Story of ‘Tell’

5100 B.C.

In his first human incarnation Tell was almost helpless. He was born in about 5100 B.C. to primitive nomadic herdsmen; a Semitic people who would later be called Akkadians, and who lived on the northern borders of the region where the settled farmers of the land between the Twin Rivers were just beginning to create the great civilisation which became Sumer. He never learned to speak the language of his first human parents, nor could he really understand what they tried to say to him, but despite this he managed to convey most of his needs and wishes by grunts and signs.

At first his parents were dismayed that this, their youngest child would never be able to take his part in the work of the clan. But as Tell grew older, they and their relatives began to see him as some sort of lucky token, and so he was well-cared-for until his death from pneumonia at about 25 years of age.

After death Tell passed to the Astral Plane. Confused and unsure of himself at first, he soon found that here he could communicate more easily than on earth. Most of those with whom he found himself were also simple souls, and using telepathy he communicated well and learnt much. He also met older souls there, too – teachers who helped him to learn many things. After some fifty years on the Astral Plane, he passed to the Spirit or Form Plane.

Though his earthly parents had been strongly religious, Tell had had no real belief in God as we understand the concept, yet he knew that something greater than himself had been helping him throughout his life, and in this he can be said to have at least half-believed. Perhaps, too he had learned more on the Astral Plane, and thus it was that on passing to the Spirit Plane he found himself in what we call the Realm of Half-belief, or the Land of Twilight. He went to school here, only a beginners’ school, but his mental capacity was still low, and although he studied conscientiously he learned only slowly. He appeared to have made but little progress in his studies when after many hundreds of years the call came to him.

He followed that call, almost in the way a migrating bird follows its instinct. Without knowing how or what was happening to him, he eventually passed into the Wall of Fire. Here, most of his memories were submerged in his great subconscious, and he was sent back to life on earth. He was born again into an advanced Neolithic culture in what is now Bulgaria about 4350BC.

4350 B.C.

This time he found himself in a devoutly religious family, a privilege earned for him by his long years of study on the Spirit Plane, and although what we would regard as "retarded", he seemed normal to his parents. Though poor throughout his life, he was always generous and grew up to live the life of a normal peasant farmer. He married a simple peasant girl, in an arranged marriage and they raised several simple peasant children.

The youngest of these, a little girl born lame and with a serious speech impediment held a peculiar fascination for Tell. Perhaps she reminded him of how he himself had functioned in his previous incarnation, perhaps there was something more, but whatever the reason, she triggered within him a peculiar feeling. A feeling that developed into the deepest real affection he had yet known. For her part, the little one followed him everywhere from the moment she could toddle, and Tell was strangely tolerant of the attention of his little daughter. He called her 'Helper', and was happiest whenever he was with her. But alas, that happiness did not last long. She was only three years old, and he was about forty, when a bear killed him in one of his own fields.

Again he passed to the Astral Plane, but this time he found himself among many of those he had known on earth. And this time he found it easier to learn from them. He had known a simple form of Belief in God, when on earth, and here he learned more, though it was still true that he did not fully understand belief, that lack was only because of his limited comprehension. When after about thirty years he passed to the Spirit Plane he was not sent back to the beginners’ school he had attended before.

He was still a young soul, but his faith was stronger, and so he studied at a higher school, though still in the Realm of Half-Belief. Then after about four hundred years he was permitted to enter the next realm, that of Morning Light, or Belief without Works, for by now his belief was strong and real, though as yet, he had not learned how to help those less fortunate than himself. He no longer attended a school there, but found that there was still much to learn and he had made relatively little progress, when after nearly two hundred more years, the call came to him and again he returned to earth.

3700 B.C.

This time he was born in the Nile Delta at about the time the Kingdoms of Upper and Lower Egypt began to come together out of the many petty fiefdoms of the previous era. To all intents and purposes he was intellectually normal, and his father, who was a tradesman himself, apprenticed him to a scribe.

This was a source of great distress to Tell who found writing hard, but he persevered, and eventually took employment in the service of a priest of Thoth, the ibis-headed god. Here he developed a considerable interest in religion, and especially in what his master could tell him about the afterlife. He never married, and rarely used his meagre pay on himself. Instead he became known for his generosity to the poor, and many hungry children had cause to bless the scribe of the Priest of Thoth.

In his late thirties he was taken by a crocodile - a death that was considered most blessed by his master, but which Tell himself found quite unpleasant! Nevertheless he was warmly welcomed to his Astral life by many friends and made quite significant progress in the forty odd years he spent on that Plane before passing to the Realms of the Spirit. There he spent long in the Realm of Belief without Works, and even began to help others, passing down to the Realm of Half Belief on many occasions, though as yet he was not considered ready to descend further.

He was still preparing himself for that step, when after nearly four hundred years the call came to him, and he returned once more to earth life.

3250 B.C.

As a result of his generosity in his last life, Tell was born this time to a prosperous merchant family in Kish, the leading city of Sumer, about 3250 BC. He grew up with access to most of this world’s goods, but although he was also exposed to spiritual values, his contact with riches began to affect him more and more. Gradually his interest in material things started to swamp his spirituality. He married the only daughter of another wealthy merchant, and began a life of prosperity and worldly happiness. But Tell was now being exposed constantly to real temptation for the first time on earth and increasingly he succumbed. His selfishness increased and his temper worsened, and first his children, then his servants and finally his wife, felt the effects of his increasingly frequent tantrums.

Finally he slew one of his servants in a rage, and although his worldly wealth enabled him to escape earthly punishment for his crime, the karma clung to him. He was genuinely sorry for what he had done, and for a while managed to control his temper. But all too soon the lesson was forgotten and as he aged, his selfishness continued to increase. More and more frequently he would fly into a violent rage and when his children were all grown they kept away from him as much as they dared. Few of his servants remained in his service for very long and his wife alone stayed with him because she could not bear the shame of leaving him, until finally, badly beaten for the third time in as many days, she fled from the house.

Tell was furious. After torturing one of the servants to discover whither she had fled, he set out in pursuit. Finally he caught her and beat her to death, before returning to his own home. Here he lived out a miserable and solitary existence whilst his ever-changing retinue of servants lived in constant fear of him, and his sudden rages. Eventually he died of some sort of fit at about sixty-five years of age.

Passing to the Astral Plane, he found himself surrounded by acquaintances from earth, many of whom had been the victims of his anger and none of whom wished him well. Often they struck him, but he fought back and though in constant conflict, and often suffering much, he still failed to learn to control his temper. After about two years as men on earth count time his Astral body was worn out and he passed to the Spirit Plane.

But by now any small amount of spirituality he might have brought with him from earth had been lost as a result of his conflicts on the Astral Plane, and he no longer retained any real form of Belief. For this reason, even the Realm of Half-Belief would not receive him, and for the first time in his journey he fell to the Realm of Unbelief or Hell as we would call it. Now, his sins though serious were not the result of ingrained evil and his fall might well have been stayed at what we call the Hell of the Sins of the Flesh (the Fourth Division), for though others had feared his temper, it was his love of material things and his selfishness that had been his most constant faults. But it was not to be.

Hardly had Tell found himself in the Hell of the Sins of the Flesh, which is yet a dark and dreadful realm, when he found himself insulted by another denizen of that place. Once again his temper got the better of him, and he struck at the man. However, because he was not then fully capable of disciplined thought, and because his anger was not under control, he was unable to do much harm to the other, who had had much more experience of life in that realm. Nor did he have any servants to command – here it was every one for himself.

Thus it was that his intended victim triumphed, and seizing Tell by the wrist, called on his companions for help. They dragged him out of the town and closed the gates behind him, so that he was forced to wander off into the dark alone.

He wandered long in that terrible blackness, scarce able to see where his feet trod, slipping and sliding down what seemed to be a long sloping hillside, but eventually he seemed to reach the bottom where he came to another city. Thus it was that still suffering the effects of his many falls, he eventually found himself in the Third Division of Hell. Here, for the first time he endured real torments, for though he had been bad tempered on earth, in this realm he soon found that he lacked the strength of will and the innate cruelty that most of its other denizens possessed.

In one sense this was just as well, for had he done so he must surely have incurred even more karma which might have kept him there for many long centuries. As it was he suffered much in this realm and out of sheer self-preservation, he eventually learned to flee at the first signs of conflict, rather than losing his temper. Nor did the other vices of that realm hold much interest for him, and so once his temper began to be controlled, he was ready to begin the long climb out again.

The inexperienced status of his spirit caused him to suffer much, but strange as it may seem to the uninitiated, it was that which actually helped him to get out of Hell more swiftly than would otherwise have been possible. It seemed much longer to him, but it was actually after less than two hundred years that he was able to leave the Third Division, and return to the Fourth. There he remained but a short time, for though on earth, he had indulged in most of the sins of the Flesh, they had been less binding on him than his blatant materialism. So it was that he passed quite swiftly through the Fourth Division into the Fifth, the Hell of Materialists, where he remained for the best part of another four centuries.

For he had not yet conquered his addiction to material things, nor did he wish do so, and had made but little progress, when he felt the call to return to earth, just as he had on so many previous occasions. This time, because he was so much further away from the Wall of Fire, it was fainter and less insistent, and at first he was able to resist it. But eventually he yielded, and allowed himself to be drawn towards it, though, once having done so, he knew naught of what followed until he was born again on earth.

2600 B.C.

Now although he had progressed somewhat whilst in Hell, when the call came to him Tell was still in the Realm of Unbelief, and surrounded by much that was evil. Nor had all his karma been paid - far from it, and these two factors combined to ensure that in his next incarnation his birth situation was much less fortunate than it had been in his previous lives This time he was born into a primitive African tribe about 2600 B.C., but his mother was a slave - she had been captured in inter-tribal fighting - and she did not know which one of her masters was her son’s father. He grew up as a slave and never owned anything of material value.

He suffered much abuse even as a child, and when the free-born boys of the tribe that were the same age as he, were being initiated into manhood, he, as a slave, had his taken from him. The pain of his castration was bad enough, but then infection set in and after almost a year of increasing agony it had reached his kidneys. Finally, almost mad with pain, he was able to welcome death as a saviour from that physical torment. He died when he was seventeen years of age.

His position on earth had not provided him with much opportunity for belief, yet the people around him had all possessed a very strong faith, and despite his not unnatural antipathy towards his owners, some of their ideas must have rubbed off on him. Perhaps it was this that allowed him to communicate with those who welcomed him on the Astral Plane. He knew a few of them. Some at least had been slave-children like him, who had died before him for one reason or another, and there were other spirits too, older and wiser spirits who were willing to help him in this different form of existence.

Unfortunately, however, he did not respond well to these offers of help. Perhaps his pain had warped the mind of his soul, or perhaps his past karma still weighed heavily upon him, but whatever the reason he was not ready to change. Somehow the fact that he had been deprived of material things when on earth had not cured him of his materialistic tendencies, and anger still burned strongly within him. Thus despite the efforts of those who sought to help him he remained in the lower part of the Astral Plane.

He spent a long time on the Astral Plane in this cycle – about sixty years - but by the time he passed to the Spirit Plane once more, he had changed little, and once again he found himself in the Hell of Materialists. But ultimately material things have little appeal in the Spirit Realms and perhaps for this reason his sojourn there was shorter than before. Or perhaps it was because at least some of his karma had been settled by his sufferings on earth. Whatever the reason, it was after only about a hundred years that he met a messenger from the realms above and with his help managed to escape to the Sixth Division. There was little to hold him there in the Hell of Hypocrisy, for that had never been his abiding fault, and in due course he hearkened to another Messenger and entered the school for sinners in the Seventh Division.

From there, after what seemed a very long time, but which was in reality only a couple of centuries, he was at length able to leave Hell. He passed again into the Realm of Half Belief, where once more he found himself at the beginners’ school he had first attended so many ages before and again he was a diligent student. But this time he seemed to learn faster. Perhaps some recollection of what he had learned before still clung to him, perhaps it was because of the now much greater range of his experiences, but whatever the reason he progressed well. He had already completed the lessons of the beginners’ school and had moved up to the higher school in the second "set" of the Realm of Half Belief, when after about 120 years he heard the call from the Wall of Fire. He followed it reluctantly, but knew nothing more till he returned to earth again.

2100 B.C.

Tell was born this time to a poor cobbler, in Mohenjo-Daro. He also became a cobbler, and though he was never rich he was able to marry and raise a brood of five children. The city itself was enjoying a period of prosperity, and tradesmen were in much demand. Tell worshipped at a small temple, not far from his home, and he gradually seems to have developed a simple faith which, however did not at first, play a major part in his life. This was until one day, when he was about forty he visited a temple prostitute to receive the blessing of the Goddess.

He had done this on many previous occasions, for it was a normal practice in his religion, but on this occasion he was particularly attracted to the new, fifteen-year-old servant of the Goddess who attended to his needs. It was almost as if he had known her before, and assuming that this was so, he questioned her carefully, but she assured him that she had but recently been brought to the city from a distant part of the Empire.

He visited her regularly for the remaining ten years of his life, and it was largely due to her influence that religion began to assume a new meaning for him, and when he was killed by a runaway elephant he passed to a very attractive part of the Astral Plane. He remained there for about twenty years, and then passed immediately to the first set of the Realm of Belief without Works on the Spirit Plane.

Here, however he was very satisfied with his lot and there was little incentive for him to make further progress. He did little for others, for there seemed no need, and many of those with whom, he associated were equally self-centred. They were not bad spirits, but they were bigoted and self-centred, and he gradually became more like them during the 300 years that he spent in that Realm. He did not fall lower, but he had made no real progress when the time came for him to return to earth again.

1730 B.C.

This time he was incarnated as the son of a minor court official in the early days of the Shang Dynasty of China. When he was grown up he succeeded his father in that position, took a cousin to wife and lived an uneventful life of some material ease. Whilst his father lived he encouraged Tell to show respect for their ancestors, but after his death, Tell thought little about the old man, and as he himself grew older he began to take an ever-increasing interest in material things. He strove constantly to accumulate wealth, entertaining other court officials and once the King himself, as he schemed constantly to improve his position. This became his main aim in life, though despite his efforts, he never became rich.

As he grew older any faith that he might have had in his youth gradually deserted him, and money became his main god. He strove constantly to improve his situation at court, and in his early sixties, he finally succeeded in being appointed to a minor regional governorship. Soon afterwards at 65 years of age, he died. He then spent about ten years on the Astral Plane, where not realizing that he was dead, he still tried to accumulate wealth. When he passed to the Spirit Plane, any belief that he might once have had was no more. His primary interest was in material things, and he found himself in the Hell of the Materialists once again.

This time he remained there for more than two hundred and fifty years, with little reason to make progress, until one day he met a missionary of Light. Such missionaries were not uncommon in that Realm, and normally he and his associates (for of course in Hell he had no friends) laughed at them, but this time something attracted him to her and he listened to what she had to say. Her words certainly affected him, for she seemed almost to know him personally. Perhaps she did! Perhaps they had been close in a previous earthly incarnation perhaps it was something deeper. But whatever the reason, when she left he began to try to better himself. After only a brief space, another missionary was able to help him to realize the worthlessness of material things and he rose to the Sixth Division. He passed quickly through that Realm and again entered one of the schools for the Regenerate. He remained there for about forty years but before he could climb out of Hell and return to the Realm of Half-belief, he was summonsed back to earth again.

1355 B.C.

Again his accumulated karma caused him to be reincarnated in difficult circumstances. He was born in Knossos in Crete during its declining years. His mother was a beggar woman who had been raped, and Tell was the product of that abuse. She never wanted him and although her faith would not let her destroy him, she abandoned him when he was about three years of age. He survived for another twelve years by begging and scrounging among the rubbish heaps of the great city, but died from food poisoning when he was fifteen without ever learning much about religion.

On the Astral Plane, however, he met up with a group of spirits who were trying to help others, and due mainly to their efforts, he learned to Believe in a half-hearted sort of way. When after nearly fifty years he passed to the Spirit Plane he was able to enter the second set of the Realm of half-belief. Here he found that he still had much to learn, but began to work avidly. He made slow but steady progress in that realm for nearly 300 years, and was nearly ready to pass to the third Set when he was called to return to earth.

1000 B.C.

He incarnated within a Phoenician village just outside Tyre. His father was a mariner, and well-respected in the local community, but Tell did not live long. He was just over a year old, when his father, about to embark on a long voyage sacrificed his son to Molech.

Tell was just old enough to understand that he was to be sent to the Gods and with just enough faith to accept his role until he saw the fire and heard the screams of the other victims. Then he understood the reality of what awaited him. For his last few moments he screamed in sheer unadulterated terror, which ended only when the excruciating agony of the fire seized his whole attention.

It was an agony that seemed to last for an age, but eventually it ceased and a pure white light replaced the red flames of agony. He was greeted tenderly, caressed and comforted, and seeing that the terrible pain was now but a dreadful memory and he so young, he recovered quite quickly. Within a few months he was growing up rapidly on the Astral Plane and when he passed to the Spirit Plane, it was to the Realm of Belief without Works. Here, he resumed his studies almost where he had left them off more than seven hundred years before.

He did not learn all his lessons all at once, but he was now much more ready to serve others and spent many years helping his humbler brethren in the Realm below (the Realm of Half-Belief) though he was not yet permitted to descend lower. He continued to learn slowly for nearly 250 years, so slowly in fact that he did not learn all the lessons of that first set before the call came to him to return to earth. But he did learn sufficient and did so much good work that when he returned to earth life, he was permitted to be reborn into a society, which though primitive, was highly religious.

700 B.C.

He then lived a normal uneventful tribal life in Northern Australia, following the customs of his people. He was especially close to his mother, who although a normal woman of her tribe was wise beyond her station. And though he grew up and became a warrior with a family of his own, Tell came to be well-regarded by his fellows, partly because of the care he always bestowed upon his aged mother. He knew it not, but it was she, who so many lives before he had called "Helper". She too, it had been who had helped him in Mohenjo Daro, and many times since then, both on earth and in the Spirit Realms, but this was the first time she had played such an important role in his life. She did this for about forty years, and died when he had reached that age.

For the next thirty years Tell remained with his people, a respected and well-beloved elder of his tribe, whose advice was frequently sought by the younger warriors. After death he passed through the Astral Plane almost immediately and entering the Spirit Plane found himself again in the lowest "set" of the Realm of Belief without Works. There at first, he was quite content with his lot, and saw no reason to progress further until one day, his guide spoke to him!

Although he was no longer a young spirit this was the first time he had seen his Guardian Angel. It was a great privilege and it had been earned for him by the wise advice he had given so freely towards the end of his life on earth. It was from his Guide that he first learned how much further he yet had to travel. Filled with enthusiasm he started to work assiduously and immediately began to make steady progress. He laboured thus for over 200 years and when the call to return to earth came to him again, he had reached the highest part of the Realm of Belief without Works.

400 B.C.

Born in what is now Samoa about 450B.C. Tell was the son of the local matriarch, and the tribal medicine man. His upbringing was free and easy as was that of all his fellows who mainly spent their time playing and helping their mothers, and the other women of the tribe. As they grew older, the boys especially often helped their fathers, going out fishing with them in the great canoes, and as Tell also grew older he slipped easily into the role of helping his father with the tribe’s medical needs. Eventually he took his place, and although in a matriarchal society he never married, many of the tribal women chose him to father their children. He never knew how many were his, but when he died from a fall at about fifty years of age, he was mourned by dozens who claimed his lineage and by the whole region.

On the Astral Plane he continued to learn and did much good helping others, but still his past karma clung to him and it was only after thirty years more labour that he was allowed to pass to the Spirit Plane again. He passed at first to the third set of the Realm of Belief without works.

Here he spent only about twenty years labouring to teach those below him in the schools in the Realm of Half-Belief. This proved his worthiness to pass higher and so he entered to the Realm of Belief with Works (Paradise) for the first time in his already long existence. There he continued to help those below him and even descended into the Seventh Division of Hell, though he was not yet permitted to go lower. After some 150 years he again received the call to return to earth

150 B.C.

Because of his many labours he was able to be reborn into a poor but devout Gallic farming family. He grew up in this Bronze Age society, as it was rapidly turning to Iron Age, and eventually became a Druid Priest. He remained a devoutly religious family man all his life, but never rose to any great height in the priestly hierarchy.

Nevertheless in his later years he was well respected by his tribe and when he died at nearly eighty years of age his body was entombed with solemn ceremony. By then he had already passed through the Astral Plane and entered the Realm of Belief with Works. (Paradise). Very soon he was permitted to undertake missionary work again.

He spent most of the first missionary journey in the Realm of Half-belief, and then for a while worked in one of the missions in Hell (Seventh Division). Later, as a missionary, he descended into the Sixth Division, and on two occasions was instrumental in bringing forth souls from that dark region.

Eventually he passed into the second set of the Realm of Belief with Works, where he continued to progress slowly but steadily and was nearly ready to pass up again to the highest "set" when the call came to him. He obeyed it and for the first time saw the Wall of Fire before he lost consciousness. Then he was born into a poor British family shortly after the suppression of the rebellion of Boadicea.

100 A.D.

His father was a blacksmith who did a lot of work for the soldiers of the locally stationed Roman Legion and Tell was exposed to a large number of religious beliefs from a very early age, for many and varied were the faiths of his father’s customers.

As Tell grew up he became more and more enamoured with the life of a soldier, and at eighteen he joined the Roman Army, where he became a devout follower of Mithra. He served in the legions for his allotted twenty years, and then at 39, he retired on the land-holding that was granted to him in return for those twenty years service. It was not far from his parents’ home, and he was a devoted son to them for the remainder of their days.

When young he had participated with his fellow legionaries, in the delights of women, not all of whom were willing, but like most of the soldiers he never married. Even when he started to farm his smallholding, it was without a wife by his side, and he remained single for the rest of his days. Mithraism was not a religion for women, and when from his aged parents he learned about Christianity, there was nothing there to encourage him to marry. By the time they died he had become a Christian, though secretly, for Christianity was much frowned upon.

He lived a good and celibate life, and for many years the local Christians met regularly in his house. In his early fifties he became a Christian priest, and it was this that led to his premature demise. Mobs of screaming locals were pursuing a member of his small congregation who sought refuge in Tell’s house, one day when he was about sixty. Tell tried to reason with them, but to no avail; they demanded the man’s life, and when Tell refused to give up their intended victim, denounced Tell as a Christian too.

All might still have been well if Tell had been prepared to surrender his parishioner to the mob, for the ex-legionary was well respected locally, but this he refused to do. He felt that he could never betray a fellow-Christian, and ultimately both perished when the house was burned over their heads.

Though not martyrs in the strictest sense of the word, he and his parishioner nevertheless passed to a bright and beautiful part of the Astral Plane. There Tell found many others of like mind, including some who had been members of his own little congregation. For another ten years he worked with this small but growing group, teaching them and helping to draw them all closer to Christ their Master, before he passed on to the Spirit Plane.

This time he was at last found worthy to pass straight to the highest part of the Realm of Faith with Works (Land of the Noon-tide Light) more generally known as Paradise. His noble death and the many good deeds of the latter part of his earth life, together with his work on the Astral Plane, had earned him that right. Yet here he found that he still had much to learn.

At first He studied with his guide and then, initially in the company of an older spirit, and later alone, he began to undertake missionary journeys into the lower parts of the Spirit Plane. He worked first in the Sixth Division of Hell but later he descended into the Fifth, and several spirits owed their release from those dark Realms to his labours.

Finally after some 130 years of missionary work the call came again to him, and this time he was able to travel directly to the Wall of Fire himself. It was the first time he had been permitted to approach such glory without losing consciousness, and he even remained conscious as he entered the Wall itself. Suddenly he found himself in a hall of light. He was in the Presence of the Judge.

"You have done well," he was told, "Continue as you have begun and your earthly sojourn will soon be ended."

Filled with faith he went forth again. Great forms of Light closed about him: darkness and pressure replaced light and freedom. A pressure that grew ever more intolerable, as an age of ages seemed to pass in darkness. At times he struggled fruitlessly, at others he seemed to sleep and dream, but for what felt like an eternity he remained imprisoned thus. And then after nine months he was born on earth again.

300 A.D.

It was about 300 A.D. and a cold winter’s day in western Tibet. His parents were poor yak-herders. But his birth had not gone unheralded. The day before, his paternal grandmother had arrived to assist at the event, for the parents were too poor to afford a mid-wife. She it was who fulfilled that role, and who, unbidden and unasked remained in the household as the babe began to grow up. And it was she to whom he turned most often for his daily needs, almost as soon as he could walk, for his parents were both hard at work all day, and it was she, more than they who brought him up.

She knew him from the first, even though it must be admitted, he did not know her immediately, but she was the one who had first taught him the beginnings of love, so many lives ago, when she had been his crippled daughter. Later she had been his mother in Northern Australia, and now for a space at least, she would care for him on earth again.

We will continue to call her Helper, though of course that was not her name in this incarnation. In that first incarnation she had been crippled, yes, but not, as at the time Tell had dimly felt, because she was a new human spirit as he had been. Rather she was even then an old soul, whose incapacity at that time had stemmed from the karma of intellectual pride, incurred in a previous incarnation. It had been a grievous fall then, and one from which it had taken her many lives to recover, but she had learned much.

Now, more than four thousand years later, Helper was indeed an ancient spirit, but she recognised in this little one, a spiritual potential at least the equal of her own. A potential she could feel, and without knowing all their past together, she loved him, as if she had known him for many years.

And indeed this was true, though she remembered not that she had been his mother for forty years in Northern Australia. They had met in other lives, too, though only briefly, but now perhaps they could again spend time together. Knowing that her present earth life must be approaching its end, she doubted whether that time could be as long as she would have wished, yet such as it was she would make the most of it.

It was she who first taught him of the world of the spirit, and it was she who insisted that his parents send for the great lama of the nearby monastery. Nor was she surprised when the Great One took one look at her grandson, took him up in his arms and blessed Kwa-min the goddess of mercy.

"When he is seven you must bring him to the monastery to be trained," he commanded, and then departed. The command could not be disobeyed, and it is hard to say who grieved most in the two years which intervened – the parents who were to lose their only child, or the old woman who knew she would not see her loved one in this life again.

So Tell came to the great monastery to be trained in the ways of the spirit. It was high in the mighty mountains, far to the west of his parent's home, and there he learned much. Firstly he learned to control his own body so that it became his slave and not his master. Food, cold, distance became equally of little consequence to him. He learned to raise his body into the air at will and to project his thoughts, so that others would know his will even at a great distance. And it soon transpired that once he had made that will known, none could gainsay the power of his mind, for great indeed was the strength of his will, and all obeyed whether they would or not. He even learned to transport himself from mountain to mountain as he had need. He could perceive and understand the auras of those around, and by the time he was twenty he could even commune with the dead.

Thus it was that his grandmother came to know him again. Nearly eighty years old when he had entered the monastery, she had died shortly afterwards. Scarcely pausing on the Astral Plane she had passed at once to Paradise, from whence she was not immediately able to communicate with Tell, but, perhaps helped by the love they shared, they finally made contact once again. But even that contact was not to last for long, for Helper had already learned most of the lessons of that realm, and could have returned to earth almost immediately. For a short space though, she delayed her reincarnation that she might help and guide the one she loved, but even so this contact only lasted for about twenty years. Then she returned to earth in another body in another part of the world and Tell was deprived of her guidance.

Yet while she remained in contact with him, he followed her advice constantly, and they became closer than ever they had been whilst they were both on earth. He felt her loss through re-birth far more than he had ever felt any loss through physical death. Yet if anything, their parting made him redouble his efforts, and his asceticism and holiness increased constantly.

He was only just past forty when he was chosen to be abbot of the monastery, and many holy lamas came from far and wide to pay homage to his great powers, and more especially to his wisdom. For through his contact with Helper, he had been able to reveal to men much knowledge of that which lies beyond death and he continued to do so. His fame spread throughout all Tibet and even in the flat lands to the south of the great mountains men spoke in hushed tones about the great lama of the High Hills who could travel the whole world and knew all things in Heaven and earth.

Perhaps it was because of their extravagant praises at this time that Tell felt the first stirrings of spiritual pride. Perhaps it was not till later, but when one day a delegation from the flat lands came to sit at his feet and listen to his wisdom, he was indeed tempted, and alas he fell, and great was his fall that day, though none around knew it. For among the many questions they asked was one of which he knew not the answer, and rather than admit this ignorance, he gave an answer as if it were the truth, and all else believed him, for he alone knew that the answer came not from revelation, but from invention.

For that answer, so fair-seeming to mortal man, was indeed no revelation of the Truth, but his own thought, or rather the thought of an evil spirit that had tempted him. Almost as soon as he had said it, he realised that he had been led astray, for the evil one could not escape his spiritual powers of detection for long. Yet for pride, he would not admit his fault to others, nor even correct himself, and not only the delegation that heard him, but many other souls through them, were led astray because of this failure of his, for they believed his saying and lived their lives accordingly.

And through his psychic powers he knew all this, and though it grieved him, his pride would not allow him to admit the error and thus correct it. Instead he hid his fault, and men on earth still gave heed to his wisdom. His powers remained great but his contact with the world beyond was now corrupted, and thus it was that when next he was tempted in like manner he fell again. And many times thus he fell as gradually he aged on earth, and still men knew it not. And if any noticed that his powers were waning, they attributed it to old age only, so that when at length he passed, it was with great honour, loved and mourned and respected by all.

But if he had refused to face the truth on earth, at the moment of his death, Tell knew he had fallen. He remembered again the words the Judge had spoken to him before he had re-entered earth-life, and realised how badly he had failed in what could have been his last earthly incarnation. Each lie he had told appeared before his face and mocked him, telling him of the harm it had wrought in those who had believed in him. He had been ancient and venerable when he passed, well nigh eighty earth years he had lived among men, and he spent but a brief time on the Astral Plane, and that not pleasant for he spent it watching his earthly reputation being destroyed.

Perhaps in that might have been found his salvation, but his pride tempted him again, and at length he succumbed to the testing, trying to prevent the damage to his earthly reputation, by using his mental powers to interfere with men on earth. For a space he was successful; his great hypnotic ability enabled him to influence those who were damaging his reputation, so that their words seemed hesitant and unconvincing. Yet even in this he knew he did wrong, for many more souls would surely be led astray if his errors were not corrected.

In was therefore in great mental torment that Tell passed to the Spirit Plane after struggling for less than a year on the Astral, and when he passed, to his horror he found darkness all about him. For his pride had been such that it belittled his faith, and his belief, once so strong had been betrayed by Hypocrisy and Lies. He found himself in what we call the Sixth Division of the Realm of Unbelief, the Hell of Hypocrisy, and was immediately accosted by one who strove to test his worthiness to dwell even in that realm. But now at last he realised how low he had sunk. He ignored the tempter, thus avoiding a further fall and terrified now at the results of his pride, he determined to make amends, though he could not decide how. He trembled at the thought that it might be already be too late – was he already beyond salvation?

For a time he shunned all company, wandering aimlessly in the dark, striving ever to avoid the abodes of men. Once he encountered a stranger, and fell badly, using the strength of his will to force the man to leave him alone. He fled from Tell’s wrath, shrieking in agony, but his cries were heard and soon a body of his fellows had gathered and attempted to cast Tell from the battlements of their city into an abyss. By the strength of his will he again managed to escape from their efforts, for he found that though his powers were by no means unique here, they were still great enough to make him one to be feared. For all that, the two hundred and fifty years he spent wandering in the Sixth Division of Hell was a time of struggle and sorrow. He eventually escaped by applying one of the basic principles of karma, which he had learned so long ago that he had almost forgotten it. It was a messenger of light who led him to remember it, for the service he himself had rendered to others only a single incarnation before now stood him in good stead, and there was no shortage of those from above willing to help him.

In obedience to the advice of such a one, Tell first sought out the people he had fled from and returned to the centre of their town with the messenger at his side. Then before all, he proclaimed his fault. It was hard at first, but the more he spoke of the wrong he had done the easier it became, and when it was done he felt better. As he had expected the townsfolk drove him from their city in wrath, but he was elated by his victory over himself and with the messenger at his side, he managed to reach the refuge of the Seventh Division of Hell. He learned rapidly in the school there, and then, again with the help of a messenger from Paradise, climbed back to the land of Half-Belief.

He went back to school here, swallowing the pride that had led him to fall so far, and re-learning much that he had once known. He progressed well, passing through each set with comparative ease. After about fifteen years in the Realm of Half-belief he was permitted to pass to the next realm, the Realm of Belief without Works, but he had not been there many years when the summons came for him to return to earth.

650 A.D.

Although he had made good progress on the Spirit Plane after his previous disastrous earth life, Tell’s bad earthly karma provided him with significantly less opportunity for spiritual development in his next incarnation. He was born in a desert encampment in Arabia about 650 A.D. and grew up to be a good Moslem. Then, when still in his teens he became a warrior under the Umayyad Caliphs. He fought fanatically for Islam and rose rapidly in rank. He was well on his way to becoming a general when he died in battle for his faith at about 22 years of age, and passed again to the Astral Plane.

There he spent about forty years, among many who had lived and died as he had on earth, but obviously was unable to progress any further whilst he remained in their company, for most were animated more by hatred of their enemy than by devotion to their faith. This was not true of Tell, and eventually he passed on to the Spirit Plane and taking up where he had left off in the Realm of Belief without Works, began to work hard and learn much.

He progressed well and after about a century entered the first set of the Realm of Belief with Works. There he did good service as a missionary to those in the Realm of Half-Belief, though because of his recent fall, he was not permitted to descend any lower at this time. He spent over 100 years in this way, before the call came for him to return to earth.

920 A.D.

He reincarnated once again about 920 A.D., but this time did not even carry to full term. He was miscarried, and buried without ceremony in a backward part of Russia. He then passed to the Astral Plane where he was well-cared-for and taught about God as he grew up. This time, he spent more than sixty years on the Astral Plane where he learned much and his faith became well-established. When he passed he was able to return to the first set of the Realm of Noon-tide Light. (Paradise)

There he spent more than two hundred years studying and working as a missionary in the Realm of Half-Belief. His Guide would not yet allow him to return and serve as a missionary in Hell, lest the fault which had once laid him low should raise its ugly head again and, Tell bowed his head and said "God’s Will be done", although he greatly desired to take that next step. And thus all-unknowingly he passed a great test. But ere he could rise to the second set of the Realm of Noon-tide Light (Paradise), he heard the call from the Wall of Fire again and reincarnated on earth once more.

1185 A.D.

Born as a humble peasant in Burgundy he became a simple monk in the monastery of Clairvaux, which was then but recently founded by the great St Bernard. Little is known of his life in the monastery, except that he followed the cloistered life with great devotion, spending many hours in worship and prayer.

He was never made a priest, though towards the end of his life, he was generally well respected by his fellows. He died at about forty-five years of age, and the abbot himself who was present at his passing, declared that he saw him received into Paradise. The abbot was not quite right. Tell had passed to the highest part of the Astral Plane, which is yet a bright and glorious place. There he spent another forty years, working to assist his humbler brethren, before passing to the Realm of Faith with Works. He spent only a brief time in the first set of that glorious Realm, and then passed to the next, where he spent more than 170 years.

There he worked assiduously as a missionary in the Seventh Division of Hell, but though he greatly desired it, he was not permitted to go any lower. He had just passed into the highest "set" of that Realm (Paradise proper) when he was summonsed to return to earth again. He approached the wall of Fire with some trepidation, and did not retain consciousness when he entered it, but in due course he was re-born on earth.

1441 A.D.

This time he was born in Byzantium twelve years before its fall. His early childhood was spent among wealthy decadence, but when the great city fell he was taken and used as a sex slave by one of the leading warriors of the conquering Emir. Apart from the sexual abuse itself, he was well treated, and no attempt was made to force him to abandon his Christian faith, though it was made very plain how many advantages might be his as the protégé of so great a warrior if he became a Moslem.

He refused and remained loyal to the Christianity of his murdered parents. Ultimately, though a slave he was allowed to marry a Christian girl and raise a family. These too, remained loyal to their Christian faith, largely because of his fortitude, and when at 80 years of age he finally died, though still a slave, it was in peace and surrounded by his children and their many descendants.

This time he spent only about five years on the Astral Plane, for he had lived long on earth. But in that brief period he did much further good, helping those who were the victims of the first sectarian violence in Europe, where the Reformation was just beginning. Then he passed on to the Spirit Plane and again he passed to the highest part of the Realm of Belief with Works, (Paradise) where he spent much of his time acting as a missionary in the Hells of Hypocrisy and Materialism where he had suffered so much, and where he had long sought to serve.

Then after nearly 170 years the call came for him to return to earth life once again. This time he knew what was taking place as he had first done so many lives ago. He again stood before his Judge, and knew that the opportunity to end his round of earth lives was approaching once again.

1695 A.D.

He was re-born among the Indians of north-western North America late in the seventeenth century. His life here was largely uneventful, in worldly terms. His people had not come into contact with the white newcomers at that time, though some rumours of their coming did reach his tribe towards the end of his life.

As a young man he was a great warrior, and took a wife when they were both quite young. He might almost be said to have known her since birth for they had grown up together, yet both knew that the attraction they felt was something much more than mere friendship. It was in this incarnation that for the first time, Tell was able to spend the bulk of his life with the one we have called Helper - she who was his soul-mate - and to spend them in a life-long partnership.

They raised four sons and several daughters and in their old age became the most valued advisers of the tribal chieftain, for Tell and even more especially Helper seemed to have a great knowledge of the things of the spirit. They also seemed to be able to foresee that which would come to pass.

Eventually at about sixty years of age Tell became the regional shaman, greatly revered by all the tribes around, and though he was again sorely tempted, this time he did not succumb to pride. Perhaps it was the presence of his soul-mate, which helped him achieve this victory over himself, for he would always admit she was more prescient than he, but whatever the reason, he did not fail again.

When at about 75 years of age he passed, he passed almost without stopping on the Astral Plane, to Paradise once again, where shortly afterwards his partner joined him. There they laboured for about 120 years, sometimes together, sometimes not, but at length the time came for Tell to return to earth again. He said a fond farewell to Helper, expecting she would shortly follow him back to earth, and hoping that their love would allow them to meet again swiftly.

Then he passed once more into the Wall of Fire, and again he was in the Presence of the Judge. "You have done well," he was told, "And I have a special task for you to do in the life that lies before you. Do this task well and you will not need to return to earth again. Will you then work for Me?"

A strange thrill ran through Tell at those words. After so many lives of struggle, the prize was at last within his grasp! At that instant there was nothing he would not have attempted. He struggled to blurt out his acceptance. It was the first time he had dared to address the Judge directly, and he was aware that his words were not as well spoken as he would have wished, or rather, his thoughts were still imperfect. . . . ..But even as he tried to express his willingness his mind was stilled - the Judge had accepted his offering and was speaking again.

"It is well . . . Behold the task I would have you do . . .", He said.

And swirling visions began to fill Tell's mind. He could not fully grasp their meaning, though he tried. There were figures in grey . . . and a wooden crucifix . . . flashes of light . . . loud thunderclaps of noise . . . . darkness . . . darkness was all around him. . . . . and pressure. He could see nothing, but he struggled . . . and struggled as his free spirit was incarcerated in flesh once more . . . For an age he struggled . . .. …..and then he was born on earth again!

1890 A.D.

He was born in north-western Prussia about 1890. A weak and sickly child, he was the third boy in a family of four boys and three girls. Two of the girls were also older than Tell. His father was a sturdy Prussian miner, his mother came from peasant stock and they were devout Lutherans. Every Sunday the whole family would trudge nearly two miles to the little parish church and another two miles back again whatever the weather - rain, wind, snow or summer heat - clad in their Sunday best. And Tell, as he grew older, came to love these weekly expeditions to Church. They were the highlight of his dreary week, but all too often he was deemed too ill to make the journey. It was sometimes one thing and sometimes another, but despite his enthusiasm he was lucky to make more than two Sundays in the month.

He was about six when he started to attend the local school with his elder brothers. That, too was a long walk, though less than the other, but again, Tell’s health prevented him attending continuously. He generally managed only about half the number of days he should have done. Sometimes he missed whole weeks at a time, and as he grew older, it was only the efforts of his mother that enabled him to learn to read. When, however, at about eight years of age he found that he could do so, there was no stopping him. Church and its associated Bible School remained the centre of his life, but whenever he couldn’t attend school, he would read the Bible, or one of the few devotional books in the house. He was confirmed in the Lutheran Church at about twelve rather later than many, but that introduced another element in his religious life. Perhaps some of the books he had read were more Catholic than Lutheran, but to him receiving communion was suddenly the most important moment in his week.

Even so his health still kept him away from Church as often as not, but his parents were not surprised when at the age of sixteen he announced that he was going to study to become a pastor. What did surprise them was that the Pastor of their local church whole-heartedly supported the boy’s ambition. They were even more surprised when despite his poor scholastic grades he was accepted at the theological college in the neighbouring town. He boarded there, though even so his health often failed him. But however sick he was he could still read and he did so - avidly. Eventually at the age of 23 he graduated and was ordained in the Lutheran Church.

He was sent as pastor to a garrison town near the French border, and his parents, despite their continuing worries about his health, encouraged him to accept the appointment. War rumours were shaking Europe at this time, but to Tell nothing else mattered. He was starting his work for God, and although it cannot be said he remembered the words of the Judge, some such thought must have been retained in his sub-conscious, for he was a now a driven man. It was as if he knew his life would be a short one. He threw himself wholeheartedly into his new task, and when he was not ministering to his little flock, he increased his own efforts in prayer and study, and often meditated late into the night.

It was during one of those late-night sessions, part-way between waking and sleeping that he met Helper again. Perhaps it was a dream. Perhaps he was yet awake, but dream or no, he never doubted the reality of the experience. It cannot be said that he recognised her, yet somehow he knew her. She greeted him warmly, and apologized for their separation. "I had expected to follow you back to earth very shortly," she explained, "But there was no need. I was kept back in Paradise for a brief space, but my final earthly lessons were learned in that last life together, and now I have been permitted to go forward. I have passed through the Wall of Fire, and need not return to earth again. I cannot speak with you like this very often, but I shall always be with you, inspiring you and guiding you. Listen for my voice, whenever you are in doubt, follow my guidance and strive always to fulfil the task the Judge gave you, and soon you too will reach the end of your earthly quest."

Perhaps she said more, but it was these words which stuck in his mind, and though parts of her message were strange to his Lutheran faith, somehow he grasped her basic meaning. He redoubled his efforts. Nothing was too much trouble for him. If any member of his small congregation needed him, he was there for them, and even though at times, he could scarcely drag himself from his sick bed, he would always respond to their calls for help. Who knows how long his health would have lasted but for the coming of the War. The War to end all Wars! It passed from the Possible to the Present so quickly, so very, very quickly! At the end of June, before the Archduke was killed, it had seemed so unlikely. Six weeks later all the major powers were involved, and suddenly the garrison town where Tell worked was swarming with troops. Thousands of conscripts were pouring into the district, many of them fearful and in desperate need of counselling. Tell did what little he could to comfort them, and when, later in the year, he himself was conscripted and sent as chaplain up to the front it was almost a relief to him.

"Figures in grey . . . and a wooden crucifix . . . flashes of light . . . loud thunderclaps of noise . . . . ." He managed to hang his wooden crucifix against a board in a supply trench, and he knew that here was his real work - the purpose for which he had been sent into earth life. Strangely his health improved during those dreadful autumn months, and he worked unceasingly.

Then came Christmas, and inspired by their pastor the German troops in his section of the front fraternized with their English opponents, turning that one Holy Day into a time of Joy. For a few brief hours, peace reigned, and some of the troops dared to hope for a real truce, but it was not to be. Furious officers from both sides drove their soldiers back to war, and Tell, the instigator of the truce was invited to apply for a discharge due to ill health. "Go back to your old church immediately," he was told, "or else."

Tell did not ask what the "or else" meant, but he knew that his work was in the trenches. He stayed there. Again he was "invited" to apply for a discharge. Again he ignored the invitation. By the middle of the next year he had received the discharge he had never applied for. He was sick. He was very sick, but he would not, could not desert "his" soldiers. They needed him. Hundreds of them had already died in his arms in those first six months of 1915! How could he leave them now?

Who knows what measures his military superiors would have used to remove him, but they were forestalled, for the Master he served was well-satisfied with his efforts. Suddenly Tell collapsed completely. He had retired to his own damp and smelly corner of the supply trench, late one night, and in the morning he just didn't wake up when everyone else did. He recovered consciousness almost two days later, to find himself in a horse-drawn wagon on the way back to the field hospital.

He was feverish and hallucinating, and it was then that the devil came to tempt him. He had failed. He had deserted his post. He must defy his carers. He would not leave "his" boys. How dare they drag him away like this! Surely that was what God willed - that he should die caring for them at the front. Or was it? Perhaps his work there was finished. Perhaps God had something else for him to do. He was quite delirious, but the still small voice did not desert him. "God puts you where he wants you," it seemed to breathe in his mind. "That part of your task is ended. You have been faithful in a few things. He will make you ruler over many things."

"If that is Thy will, so be it," he murmured and all unknowingly passed the final test.

"Send me a sign," he prayed. "If Thou wishest me to go back, let me be able to walk again; otherwise, Thy Will be done."

But the tuberculosis was affecting his joints now, as well as every other part of his body. He never walked again! He never even left his hospital bed, and as the Great War "celebrated" its first birthday he left this world for ever. All who had known him in the hospital testified that even there, dying from the effects of tuberculosis, and often in dreadful pain he would counsel and guide his fellow patients and even comfort the overworked doctors and nurses. Never once did a word of complaint cross his lips, and often those who came to attend him, saw him lying still in bed, eyes staring unseeing at the ceiling, lips moving slightly. Perhaps he spoke to his soul-mate: perhaps he spoke to his God. Whichever it was his carers hardly dared to interrupt, but when circumstances compelled them to do so he was always calm and helpful.

When at length the time came, he passed almost immediately to the Spirit Plane. Though he had died so young, he spent hardly a day on the Astral, before he came to Paradise again. Even here he was not permitted to tarry. Hardly had he become aware of his surroundings, when the now familiar call came to him and he advanced to the Wall of Fire.

The Judge was waiting for him. And this time he knew Him. Perhaps he had always known Him, but now at last he recognised His Face. It was as the face on his wooden crucifix. And the Judge was none other than the Master he had served all his life – the Saviour Who had died for him. A boundless joy surged within him as he bowed low and the Judge spoke:

"Behold the path of return to earth life. It is yours by right, if you will take it. But if you will serve Me you must forsake earth life and go on. Will you return to earth life, or will you serve Me and go on?"

And Tell bowed his head to the ground. "Go on" he murmured, and he knew that the Judge could not possibly have heard, for he said it almost to himself. He was about to repeat himself more loudly, when Jesus answered him.

"Well done, my good and faithful servant." He said. "You have been faithful in a few things. I will give thee charge over many. Behold your partner is waiting to lead you to your new abode."

Suddenly great forms of light were all about him, but this time darkness did not replace the light nor did pressure build up round him, preparatory to returning to earth. Rather it was as if the light that surrounded him suddenly became brighter. But if it had become brighter his own spiritual sight had become stronger, too, for the light no longer hurt his eyes. Then his memories began to come flooding back, sweeping around him like the waves of a river in flood.

Yet if they were a river in flood, he was a parched and thirsty land, and as the flood swept over him, so his spirit was opened to receive it. Memory after memory, came flooding back to him, knowledge long forgotten, welled up within his mind - every experience from his last life and from lives before that came surging from the depths of the flood. Life after life it came back to him all the knowledge and experience he had gained: the good, the bad, the great and the terrible, and somehow he knew it all. It was as if he had always known it, as if he had never lost the knowledge. It had always been a part of him.

Now the figures of light were drawing aside from before him, though they still seemed to be behind, as he was ushered forth into the Realm beyond the Wall of Fire. A great and magnificent vista was slowly opening before his dawning vision: a vista beside which even the wonders of Paradise seemed tawdry and insignificant. Wonderful flowers and a marvellous countryside, all glorious to behold, gradually took form before him. Nor were his other senses unaffected. Strange and beautiful music, together with the songs of birds and in the background, voices, as of a mighty cathedral choir, welled about him, and accompanying it came a wonderful panoply of scents, - flowers, pine forests, fresh morning air - wonders unceasing embraced his entire being.

Before his feet there lay two paths, yet for him there was only one. He knew as if by instinct that the one to the left led back to earth life, whilst the other led onwards to the place his Master had prepared for him. Tell raised his eyes and looked in that direction. He could hardly take it all in, but even as he stared in fascination, absorbing all the wonder of it, there appeared that which made all else as naught. Radiant in glory, floating as if on a cloud of light, a glorious crowd of spirits came slowly towards him and at their head was his partner, Helper.

She held out her arms in welcome, and for a space naught else mattered. When at last he began to take note of his surroundings again, he was alone with her: alone in a glorious land of never-ending wonders, still gazing into the distance. There, high on a hill a great city of light shone brilliantly, as if beckoning him. As his eyes rested on it, his partner took his hand and started to lead him forward.

"Come," she said.

  Commentary on the Story of Tell

There is a great deal that could be said about the Story of Tell, and not time enough to say it all here. Firstly it must be remembered that it is but a story, though many parts of it bear comparison with the experiences of Mystics. I make no claim that it is the result of Divine inspiration, though I have done my best to comply with the Divine Laws as I understand them. I have also followed the basic principles of reincarnation, the Law of Karma and the need for the soul to gain experience in treading the Path of Perfection. But still this is only a tale. .

Tell is a pretty average spirit. He fell, but not terribly badly, nor did he speed swiftly along the path in only a very few lives. He was never a king or a conqueror, and spent most of his earthly incarnations in obscurity. He only spent a significant amount of time with his soul-mate in four of his twenty lives, and only in the last of those did they have a life-long partnership. And only in that life and one other did they realize that they had a special spiritual relationship. Tell's partner was an older soul than he, and she finished her earthly incarnations before him, though not as much sooner as her greater antiquity might have indicated, for as we have already intimated, she had fallen badly before she first met Tell as "Helper".

 

The Stages of Human Development.

We have previously suggested that there are about six major stages in the development of a human spirit, and it is now time to see how we can apply these to the story of Tell. These stages are:

One or more lives spent learning to function as a human being.

At least two lives spent in learning basic spirituality.

Usually at least one life that results in a major fall.

Two or more lives recovering from each such fall.

At least a couple of lives treading the Path of Perfection, not always sequentially.

Finally a life in which the spirit earns the right to end its round of earth lives.

 

The Stages in Tell’s Journey

Tell did quite well in the First Stage. He only spent one life learning to be a human, and though he then spent many years learning very slowly on the Astral and Spirit Planes, when he returned to earth again, his Angel would have been well pleased.

In the Second Stage Tell also did well. He began to find religion and the next two lives brought him to the Realm of Belief without Works. And at that time all seemed well with his spiritual standing.

But in the Third Stage we are told that each soul is likely to experience at least one major fall, and for Tell the first such fall came in his fourth incarnation. It was his first real test and he fell badly. His temper caused him to do much evil, and brought him eventually down to the Third Division of Hell. But he was not really malicious, a fault which usually pertains to more mature souls and as a result, he eventually made some progress before returning to earth.

We are told that in the Fourth Stage it will usually take at least two lives to recover from such a fall, and so it was with Tell. He struggled out of hell only after his fifth incarnation, and it was after the sixth when he won back to the Realm of Belief without Works again. Then he fell again, though not so badly, but it still took three more lives before he was ready to start the Fifth Stage.

The Fifth Stage tells us that there is a need for at least two lives treading the Path of Perfection, but Tell was still quite a young soul, and his tenth incarnation was as a warrior. However his previous care for his mother did enable him to hold his place on the Spirit Plane, and when he came back in his eleventh life it was as a Medicine Man, clearly one who served his community. That service enabled him to pass for the first time to the highest part of the Spirit Plane, the Land of the Noon-Day Sun. Coupled with his next incarnation as a Druid Priest and then his virtual martyrdom as a Christian Priest in his thirteenth incarnation it also gave him the opportunity of ending his round of earth lives in his Fourteenth.

This should have been the Sixth Stage, but it was not to be. The end was already in sight, yet the Tempter was again able to lead him astray, and he led him astray through that most insidious of spiritual faults, pride. Pride in turn led to lies and deception, and in one to whom others looked for guidance, that was indeed a serious fault - a fault that put in jeopardy his whole spiritual progress.

For a third time he fell and he was effectively back to the Third Stage again. His past few incarnations had led him to climb the heights of the spirit steadily and well. They brought him to the very brink of perfection, and then the ugly threat of pride brought him low, even as Helper had apparently fallen to its deadly poison, thousands of years earlier. Many highly evolved spirits fall in this way and most fall further and more seriously than did Tell in this representation.

It can be said that the Fourth Stage began again almost as soon as Tell had fallen into the Hell of Hypocrisy, for realizing that he had fallen and recognizing his fault, he strove mightily to make amends, instead of continuing to take the downward path as often happens in such circumstances. So much so that in his next incarnation he had the opportunity of giving his life for his faith and so paying off many of the debts he had incurred in his previous earth life. But he was still very far from his previous spiritual heights. His sixteenth incarnation, when he was aborted before birth on earth, was necessary to allow him to continue his development on the Astral Plane, which in turn gave him the opportunity to make further progress in the Land of the Noon-day Sun.

It was only in his seventeenth incarnation, as a monk, that he was enabled to re-enter the Fifth Stage and assail the Path of Perfection once again. This cemented his place in the highest part of the Spirit Plane, but we may wonder about his eighteenth life as a slave. Undoubtedly he had quite a number of debts still to be paid, but it seems that the main lessons to be learned from this incarnation were connected with the fact that it had been many lives since he had last played the role of a family man and received the opportunities and temptations that pertain thereto. In his nineteenth life, he was also a family man, so there must still have been lessons to be learned in that field, but his work as a tribal shaman would certainly lead him to consider the things of God, and once again he was tested as he had been in his Fourteenth life. This time, however, he did not succumb to pride and when he had again spent a period on the highest part of the Spirit Plane he was ready to return to earth once more.

Note, however that the times between incarnations were by now much reduced, itself a sign that one is approaching the end of one's earthly quest. Thus Tell came to the Sixth stage once more. He had again earned the right to be given the opportunity of ending his round of earth lives. He would again be granted the opportunity of climbing the spiritual Path, of striving ever to avoid the dangers which had previously laid him low, until ultimately he would triumph as indeed we all will, one day.

This time the Sixth Stage was completed successfully. Even his enforced separation from Helper may have been a source of inspiration to Tell, but he did not triumph easily and few men have made the sort of effort he made in his last life. His sickliness in that incarnation indicates that he still had debts to pay, but the combination of suffering and service enabled him to end his round of earth lives quite quickly. Perhaps even a lesser effort would have allowed him to win the crown though after a much longer time on earth. As it was he was able to pass almost straight from earth to the Celestial Planes, at the youthful age of twenty-five without pausing on the Astral and Spirit Planes. This achievement is less unusual than might be supposed, for often such a spirit will have already completed the lessons of those Planes ere ever it returns to earth-life for the last time. And if perchance some small debts remain to be settled there, it is often the case that such a highly spiritual being will be able to function on the Astral and/or Spirit Planes each night when it sleeps on earth.

Thus it will have opportunities of settling any small debts that remain to be settled on those Planes, whilst still living on earth. This is another fact which tends to speed up the progress of a spirit during its last few incarnations, when it can be truly said that it travels by night as well as by day. In this way, a highly evolved spirit is often able to settle its last few debts and so be ready to pass forward immediately after its physical death, as happened with Tell.

There is nothing in the story to tell us that this is exactly what happened to Tell, but as we know that he was able to receive a message from Helper, he must have possessed at least some mystic ability, which would certainly make such a thing possible.

Finally we should note the way that he was re-united with the knowledge of his past incarnations - the "Overself" as it is sometimes called. This is not only important for the individual concerned, it also demonstrates that as Christ put it, "even the least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than the greatest earthly man." (St. Matthew 11; 11)

As such they can do far more for God and their fellows as Saints of God, and that is ultimately the reason we seek to achieve that goal even as Tell did.

 

 

The Journey of a "Typical Soul"

Life No

Birth Date

Area

Role in

Life

Years on

Earth

Years on

Astral

Years in Hell

Years in

Twilight

Years in

Morning

Years in

Noonday

Years Birth to Birth

1

5100 B.C.

Akkad

Cretin

25

50

675

750

2

4350 B.C.

Bulgaria

Peasant

40

30

400

180

650

3

3700 B.C.

Egypt

Scribe

38

42

370

450

4

3250 B.C.

Sumer

Merchant

65

2

583

650

5

2600 B.C.

Africa

Slave

17

60

303

120

500

6

2100 B.C.

India

Cobbler

50

20

300

370

7

1730 B.C.

China

Court official

65

10

300

375

8

1355 B.C.

Crete

Beggar

15

50

290

355

9

1000 B.C.

Lebanon

Child

1

52

247

300

10

700 B.C.

Australia

Warrior

70

0

230

300

11

400 B.C.

Samoa

Medicineman

50

30

20

150

250

12

150 B.C.

France

Druid Priest

80

0

170

250

13

100 A.D.

Britain

Priest

60

10

130

200

14

300 A.D.

Tibet

Lama

79

1

250

15

5

325

15

650 A.D.

Arabia

Warrior

22

40

98

110

270

16

920 A.D.

Russia

Abortion

0

62

203

265

17

11850 A.D.

Burgundy

Monk

45

40

171

256

18

1441 A.D.

Turkey

Slave

80

5

169

254

19

1695 A.D.

America

Shaman

75

0

120

195

20

1890 A.D.

Prussia

Pastor

25

25

Totals

902

504

1436

1500

1450

1223

7015

 The Table.

I should also like the reader to study the table above. It is entitled "Lives of Tell" and summarizes the most important aspects of each of his earthly lives, together with the approximate times Tell spent on the Astral Plane and the various parts of the Spirit Plane between his earthly incarnations. Although I do not claim "The Story of Tell" to be authoritative, we shall, for the moment assume that it is, for there are some interesting points to be made and which the table shows up more clearly than any story could ever do.

The first thing to be noted is the total time it took Tell to pass through his lives as a man till he became a Venerable - 7015 years. This is longer than the whole of written history and the story makes it quite clear that Helper was several lives older than Tell. She was probably at least two thousand years older as a human and may have been three or four thousand. Although the time is short compared to the hundreds of incarnations spent in the animal kingdom that preceded it, it still takes a very long period of time to learn the lessons of the human state.

The second thing to note is that we usually spend longer on earth than on the Astral Plane, especially during the later incarnations. This is not always the case, but over the whole of his incarnations, Tell spent nearly twice as long on the Physical Plane as he did on the Astral.

There are certainly times when a spirit needs experience on the Astral Plane and in that case, it is likely to have one or more incarnations in which it does not live long on earth. This happened several times to Tell, but in general we spend a longer time on Earth than on the Astral Plane. Partly this is because the Astral Plane is merely a transitory stage between the Physical and our real home on the Spirit Plane, and partly it is because, at least in our later incarnations, we may learn to function on the Astral Plane when we sleep on earth. Of course we spend much longer on the Spirit Plane than on both the others combined, as this table also demonstrates.

The third thing to note is that the total time spent on the Physical and Astral Planes Combined is approximately equal to the periods spent on each of the major divisions of the Spirit Plane. This should serve to remind us of just how vast the Spirit Plane is, especially when we remember that Tell spent only a comparatively brief time in the Third Division of Hell, where the spirits often remain for many centuries and none at all in the two lower Divisions.

Another point worth noting is the relatively long time it took for Tell to learn the lessons of the Land of Half-Belief the first time he went there, when he was a very young soul. The periods he spent there when he was recovering from a fall were much shorter, and he learned faster. This is partly due to the fact that if both are equally sincere, an older and more experienced soul will always have the capacity to learn faster than a younger spirit. But it is also a fact that although the memories of our distant past are lost to our consciousness, they still affect our subconscious and thus enable us to re-learn what we already "know" much more quickly than we acquire "new" knowledge that we have not learned previously. This is what allowed Tell to progress relatively swiftly in his second and subsequent attempts to learn the lessons of the Land of Half-Belief. It also shows us that even when we suffer a major fall, the knowledge and experience that we have previously gained is not lost or wasted. Rather, it is hidden in the deepest parts of our subconscious until as it were we are once again ready to utilize it.

Finally we should see how the periods of time between incarnations reduce as the spiritual standing improves and increases again following a fall. Please note, however, that none of the later incarnations show a period spent on the higher parts of the Spirit Plane that is anywhere near the maximum possible and this seems to be normal. It is as if the spirit can only learn so much on the Spirit Plane before returning to earth to learn further lessons or perhaps, sometimes returning to earth for only a brief space in order that it may then spend time on the Astral Plane to learn something else there.

But notwithstanding this need, in almost all cases the main part of the spirit’s time is spent on the Spirit Plane. The most likely exception to this norm is at or near the end of its incarnations when Earth debts may still need to be settled long after those on other Planes, and even after all the lessons of human existence have been earned. After such a "last" incarnation, the spirit may be ready to pass straight to the Plane of the Venerables, as happened to Tell, though not to Helper. It was his past earth debts alone that caused Tell to need another incarnation when Helper was able to go forward without returning to earth.

It sometimes happens that a spirit does not quite complete its earthly lessons in what could well have been its last life. If it has already learned all it needs to know on the Astral and Spirit Planes it may occasionally be permitted to reincarnate almost immediately and quite frequently, within only a few years. In such cases it is not uncommon for at least some memory of the past life to be brought through with it, especially when it is still young. (Usually less than seven years). When a longer period has elapsed between incarnations such memories are less common. (as we would expect).

 

Summary.

I must again emphasise that I do not claim that "The Story of Tell" is authoritative. Neither is the table previously provided. But if they were, and if we could study a series of such stories about different individuals and compare a number of such tables, think how much we could learn about the progress of mortals on earth. Think how much more surely and swiftly we could guide and direct our own pupils along the path.

Then understand that the Angels have such knowledge and much, much more and think how much our Guardian Angels must know about MORTALS ere ever they take upon themselves the task of guiding even the humblest Divine Spark. And how much more they will know about us when they have spent many lives and many ages guiding and directing our every endeavour. Then indeed, we shall be very ready to hearken to the promptings of our individual Guardian Angels, for they can teach us many things, and will surely lead us closer to the Goal of all our striving if only we will learn to hear them and obey their guidance

And if "The Story of Tell" teaches us no more than this, it will indeed have been well worth while studying it, and I shall be justified for including what is only a relatively modern story in this account of the Ancient Wisdom.