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Original key entry by Bill Heidrick, GTG O.T.O.

Extracted from EQ-I-10.AS2/3 by Fr. NChSh, Uraeus-Hadit Camp, O.T.O.

Copyright (c) O.T.O.


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                               ELIPHAS LEVI

                         THE KEY OF THE MYSTERIES

                               ACCORDING TO


                                AND SOLOMON


                               ELIPHAS LEVI


[shuffled CONTENTS to beginning -- 333]



     TRANSLATORS NOTE  .     .     .     .     .     .              v

     INTRODUCTION.     .     .     .     .     .     .          . vii

     PREFACE .   .     .     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  xi

     PART I (RELIGIOUS MYSTERIES)  .     .     .     .     .    .   1

        PRELIMINARY CONSIDERATIONS .     .     .     .     .    .   1

        FIRST ARTICLE  .     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  12


        ARTICLE II     .     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  72

        ARTICLE III    .     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  77

        ARTICLE IV     .     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  82

        ARTICLE V      .     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  89

        RESUME OF PART I     .     .     .     .     .     .    .  91

     PART II (PHILOSOPHICAL MYSTERIES)   .     .     .     .    .  98

     PART III (MYSTERIES OF NATURE).     .     .     .     .    . 108

        FIRST BOOK CHAPTER I .     .     .     .     .     .    . 110

                   CHAPTER II.     .     .     .     .     .    . 117

                   CHAPTER III     .     .     .     .     .    . 127

                   CHAPTER IV      .     .     .     .     .    . 226

           BOOK II CHAPTER I .     .     .     .     .     .    . 234

                   CHAPTER II      .     .     .     .     .    . 239

                   CHAPTER III     .     .     .     .     .    . 244

                   CHAPTER IV      .     .     .     .     .    . 256


                   CHAPTER I       .     .     .     .     .    . 270

                   CHAPTER II      .     .     .     .     .    . 274

                   CHAPTER III     .     .     .     .     .    . 281

                   CHAPTER IV      .     .     .     .     .    . 285

                   EPILOGUE        .     .     .     .     .    . 289

   "Religion says: --- 'Believe and you will understand.'  Science
comes to say to you: --- 'Understand and you will believe.'

   "At that moment the whole of science will change front; the spirit,
so long dethroned and forgotten, will take its ancient place; it will
be demonstrated that the old traditions are all true, that the whole
of paganism is only a system of corrupted and misplaced truths, that
it is sufficient to cleanse them, so to say, and to put them back
again in their place, to see them shine with all their rays.  In a
word, all ideas will change, and since on all sides a multitude of the
elect cry in concert, 'Come, Lord, come!' why should you blame the men
who throw themselves forward into that majestic future, and pride
themselves on having foreseen it?"

   (J. De Maistre, "Soirees de St. Petersbourg.")

                             TRANSLATOR'S NOTE

   IN the biographical and critical essay which Mr. Waite prefixes to
his "Mysteries of Magic" he says: "A word must be added of the method
of this digest, which claims to be something more than translation and
has been infinitely more laborious.  I believe it to be in all
respects faithful, and where it has been necessary or possible for it
to be literal, there also it is invariably literal."

   We agree that it is either more or less than translation, and the
following examples selected at hazard in the course of half-an-hour
will enable the reader to judge whether Mr. Waite is acquainted with
either French or English:

   "Gentilhomme" --- "Gentleman."

   "The nameless vice which was reproached "against" the Templars."

   "Certaines circonstances ridicules et un proces en escroquerie" ---
"Certain ridiculous processes and a swindling lawsuit."

   "Se mele de dogmatiser" --- "Meddles with dogmatism."

   "La vie pour lui suffisait a l'expiation des plus grands crimes,
puis qu'elle etait la consequence d'un arret de mort" --- "According
to him life was sufficient for the greatest crimes, since "these" were
the result of a death sentence."

   "Vos meilleurs amis ont du concevoir des inquietudes" --- "Your
best friends have been reasonably anxious."  (The mistranslation here
turns the speech into an insult.) {v}

   "Sacro-sainte" --- "Sacred and saintly."

   "Auriculaire" --- "Index."

   "N'avez vous pas obtenu tout ce que vous demandiez, et plus que
vous ne demandiez, car vous ne m'aviez pas parle d'argent?" --- "Have
you not had all and more than you wanted, and there has been no
question of remuneration?"  (This mistranslation makes nonsense of the
whole passage.)

   "Eliphas n'etait pas a la question" --- "Eliphas was not under
cross- examination."

   "Mauvais plaisant" --- "Vicious jester."

   "Si vous n'aviez pas ... vous deviendriez" --- "If you have not ...
you may become."  (This mistranslation turns a compliment into an

   "An awful and ineffaceable tableaux."

   "Peripeties" --- "Circumstances."

   "Il avait fait partie du clerge de Saint Germain l'Auxerrois" ---
"He was of the Society of St. Germain l'Auxerrois."

   "Bruit de tempete" --- "Stormy sound."

   We are obliged to mention this matter, as Mr. Waite (by persistent
self- assertion) has obtained the reputation of being trustworthy as
an editor. On the contrary, he not only mutilates and distorts his
authors, but, as demonstrated above, he is totally incapable of
understanding their simplest phrases and even their commonest words.


   THIS volume represents the high-water mark of the thought of
Eliphas Levi.  It may be regarded as written by him as his Thesis for
the Grade of Exempt Adept, just as his "Ritual and Dogma" was his
Thesis for the grade of a Major Adept.  He is, in fact, no longer
talking of things as if their sense was fixed and universal.  He is
beginning to see something of the contradiction inherent in the nature
of things, or at any rate, he constantly illustrates the fact that the
planes are to be kept separate for practical purposes, although in the
final analysis they turn out to be one. This, and the extraordinarily
subtle and delicate irony of which Eliphas Levi is one of the greatest
masters that has ever lived, have baffled the pedantry and stupidity
of such commentators as Waite.  English has hardly a word to express
the mental condition of such unfortunates.  "Dummheit," in its
strongest German sense, is about the nearest thing to it.  It is as if
a geographer should criticize "Gulliver's Travels" from his own
particular standpoint.

   When Levi says that all that he asserts as an initiate is
subordinate to his humble submissiveness as a Christian, and then not
only remarks that the Bible and the Qur'an are different translations
of the same book, but treats the Incarnation as an allegory, it is
evident that a good deal of submission will be required.  When he
agrees with St. Augustine that a thing is not just because God wills
it, but God wills it because it is just, he sees perfectly well that
he is reducing God to a poetic image reflected from his own moral
{vii} ideal of justice, and no amount of alleged orthodoxy can weigh
against that statement.  His very defence of the Catholic Hierarchy is
a masterpiece of that peculiar form of conscious sophistry which
justifies itself by reducing its conclusion to zero.  One must begin
with "one," and that "one" has no particular qualities.  Therefore, so
long as you have an authority properly centralized it does not really
matter what that authority is.  In the Pope we have such an authority
ready made, and it is the gravest tactical blunder to endeavour to set
up an authority opposed to him.  Success in doing so means war, and
failure anarchy.  This, however, did not prevent Levi from
ceremonially casting a papal crown to the ground and crying "Death to
tyranny and superstition!" in the bosom of a certain secret Areopagus
of which he was the most famous member.

   When a man becomes a magician he looks about him for a magical
weapon; and, being probably endowed with that human frailty called
laziness, he hopes to find a weapon ready made.  Thus we find the
Christian Magus who imposed his power upon the world taking the
existing worships and making a single system combining all their
merits.  There is no single feature in Christianity which has not been
taken bodily from the worship of Isis, or of Mithras, or of Bacchus,
or of Adonis, or of Osiris.  In modern times again we find Frater Iehi
Aour trying to handle Buddhism.  Others again have attempted to use
Freemasonry.  There have been even exceptionally foolish magicians who
have tried to use a sword long since rusted.

   Wagner illustrates this point very clearly in "Siegfried."  The
Great Sword Nothung has been broken, and it is the {viii} only weapon
that can destroy the gods.  The dwarf Mime tries uselessly to mend it.
 When Siegfried comes he makes no such error.  He melts its fragments
and forges a new sword.  In spite of the intense labour which this
costs, it is the best plan to adopt.

   Levi completely failed to capture Catholicism; and his hope of
using Imperialism, his endeavour to persuade the Emperor that he was
the chosen instrument of the Almighty, a belief which would have
enabled him to play Maximus to little Napoleon's Julian, was shattered
once for all at Sedan.

   It is necessary for the reader to gain this clear conception of
Levi's inmost mind, if he is to reconcile the "contradictions" which
leave Waite petulant and bewildered.  It is the sad privilege of the
higher order of mind to be able to see both sides of every question,
and to appreciate the fact that both are equally tenable.  Such
contradictions can, of course, only be reconciled on a higher plane,
and this method of harmonizing contradictions is, therefore, the best
key to the higher planes.

   It seems unnecessary to add anything to these few remarks.  This is
the only difficulty in the whole book, though in one or two passages
Levi's extraordinarily keen sense of humour leads him to indulge in a
little harmless bombast.  We may instance his remarks on the
"Grimoire" of Honorius.

   We have said that this is the masterpiece of Levi.  He reaches an
exaltation of both thought and language which is equal to that of any
other writer known to us.  Once it is understood that it is purely a
thesis for the Grade of Exempt Adept, the reader should have no
further difficulty. --- A. C. {ix}


   On the brink of mystery, the spirit of man is seized with
giddiness. Mystery is the abyss which ceaselessly attracts our unquiet
curiosity by the terror of its depth.

   The greatest mystery of the infinite is the existence of Him for
whom alone all is without mystery.

   Comprehending the infinite which is essentially incomprehensible,
He is Himself that infinite and eternally unfathomable mystery; that
is to say, that He is, in all seeming, that supreme absurdity in which
Tertullian believed.

   Necessarily absurd, since reason must renounce for ever the project
of attaining to Him; necessarily credible, since science and reason,
far from demonstrating that He does not exist, are dragged by the
chariot of fatality to believe that He does exist, and to adore Him
themselves with closed eyes.

   Why? --- Because this Absurd is the infinite source of reason.  The
light springs eternally from the eternal shadows.  Science, that Babel
Tower of the spirit, may twist and coil its spirals ever ascending as
it will; it may make the earth tremble, it will never touch the sky.

   God is He whom we shall eternally learn to know better, and,
consequently, He whom we shall never know entirely.

   The realm of mystery is, then, a field open to the conquests of the
intelligence.  March there as boldly as you will, never will you
diminish its extent; you will only alter {xi} its horizons.  To know
all is an impossible dream; but woe unto him who dares not to learn
all, and who does not know that, in order to know anything, one must
learn eternally!

   They say that in order to learn anything well, one must forget it
several times.  The world has followed this method.  Everything which
is to-day debateable had been solved by the ancients.  Before our
annals began, their solutions, written in hieroglyphs, had already no
longer any meaning for us.  A man has rediscovered their key; he has
opened the cemeteries of ancient science, and he gives to his century
a whole world of forgotten theorems, of syntheses as simple and
sublime as nature, radiating always from unity, and multiplying
themselves like numbers with proportions so exact, that the known
demonstrates and reveals the unknown.  To understand this science, is
to see God.  The author of this book, as he finishes his work, will
think that he has demonstrated it.

   Then, when you have seen God, the hierophant will say to you: ---
"Turn round!" and, in the shadow which you throw in the presence of
this sun of intelligences, there will appear to you the devil, that
black phantom which you see when your gaze is not fixed upon God, and
when you think that your shadow fills the sky, --- for the vapours of
the earth, the higher they go, seem to magnify it more and more.

   To harmonize in the category of religion science with revelation
and reason with faith, to demonstrate in philosophy the absolute
principles which reconcile all the antinomies, and finally to reveal
the universal equilibrium of natural forces, is the triple object of
this work, which will consequently be divided into three parts. {xii}

   We shall exhibit true religion with such characters, that no one,
believer or unbeliever, can fail to recognize it; that will be the
absolute in religion.  We shall establish in philosophy the immutable
characters of that Truth, which is in science, "reality;" in judgment,
"reason;" and in ethics, "justice."  Finally, we shall acquaint you
with the laws of Nature, whose equilibrium is stability, and we shall
show how vain are the phantasies of our imagination before the fertile
realities of movement and of life.  We shall also invite the great
poets of the future to create once more the divine comedy, no longer
according to the dreams of man, but according to the mathematics of

   Mysteries of other worlds, hidden forces, strange revelations,
mysterious illnesses, exceptional faculties, spirits, apparitions,
magical paradoxes, hermetic arcana, we shall say all, and we shall
explain all.  Who has given us this power?  We do not fear to reveal
it to our readers.

   There exists an occult and sacred alphabet which the Hebrews
attribute to Enoch, the Egyptians to Thoth or to Hermes Trismegistus,
the Greeks to Cadmus and to Palamedes.  This alphabet was known to the
followers of Pythagoras, and is composed of absolute ideas attached to
signs and numbers; by its combinations, it realizes the mathematics of
thought. Solomon represented this alphabet by seventy-two names,
written upon thirty-six talismans.  Eastern initiates still call these
the "little keys" or clavicles of Solomon.  These keys are described,
and their use explained, in a book the source of whose traditional
dogma is the patriarch Abraham.  This book is called the Sepher
Yetzirah; with the aid of the Sepher Yetzirah one can penetrate the
{xiii} hidden sense of the Zohar, the great dogmatic treatise of the
Qabalah of the Hebrews.  The Clavicles of Solomon, forgotten in the
course of time, and supposed lost, have been rediscovered by
ourselves; without trouble we have opened all the doors of those old
sanctuaries where absolute truth seemed to sleep, --- always young,
and always beautiful, like that princess of the childish legend, who,
during a century of slumber, awaits the bridegroom whose mission it is
to awaken her.

   After our book, there will still be mysteries, but higher and
farther in the infinite depths.  This publication is a light or a
folly, a mystification or a monument.  Read, reflect, and judge.


                         THE KEY OF THE MYSTERIES

                       (LA CLEF DES GRANDS MYSTERES)


                               ELIPHAS LEVI


                                  PART I

                            RELIGIOUS MYSTERIES

                           PROBLEMS FOR SOLUTION

   I. --- To demonstrate in a certain and absolute manner the
existence of God, and to give an idea of Him which will satisfy all

   II. --- To establish the existence of a true religion in such a way
as to render it incontestable.

   III. --- To indicate the bearing and the "raison d'etre" of all the
mysteries of the one true and universal religion.

   IV. --- To turn the objections of philosophy into arguments
favourable to true religion.

   V. --- To draw the boundary between religion and superstition, and
to give the reason of miracles and prodigies.

                        PRELIMINARY CONSIDERATIONS

   WHEN Count Joseph de Maistre, that grand and passionate lover of
Logic, said despairingly, "The world is without religion," he
resembled those people who say rashly "There is no God."

   The world, in truth, is without the religion of Count Joseph de
Maistre, as it is probable that such a God as the majority of atheists
conceive does not exist.

   Religion is an idea based upon one constant and universal {1} fact;
man is a religious animal.  The word "religion" has then a necessary
and absolute sense.  Nature herself sanctifies the idea which this
word represents, and exalts it to the height of a principle.

   The need of believing is closely linked with the need of loving;
for that reason our souls need communion in the same hopes and in the
same love.  Isolated beliefs are only doubts: it is the bond of mutual
confidence which, by creating faith, composes religion.

   Faith does not invent itself, does not impose itself, does not
establish itself by any political agreement; like life, it manifests
itself with a sort of fatality.  The same power which directs the
phenomena of nature, extends and limits the supernatural domain of
faith, despite all human foresight.  One does not imagine revelations;
one undergoes then, and one believes in them.  In vain does the spirit
protest against the obscurities of dogma; it is subjugated by the
attraction of these very obscurities, and often the least docile of
reasoners would blush to accept the title of "irreligious man."

   Religion holds a greater place among the realities of life than
those who do without religion --- or pretend to do without it ---
affect to believe.  All ideas that raise man above the animal ---
moral love, devotion, honour --- are sentiments essentially religious.
 The cult of the fatherland and of the family, fidelity to an oath and
to memory, are things which humanity will never abjure without
degrading itself utterly, and which could never exist without the
belief in something greater than mortal life, with all its
vicissitudes, its ignorance and its misery.

   If annihilation were the result of all our aspirations to {2} those
sublime things which we feel to be eternal, our only duties would be
the enjoyment of the present, forgetfulness of the past, and
carelessness about the future, and it would be rigorously true to say,
as a celebrated sophist once said, that the man who thinks is a
degraded animal.

   Moreover, of all human passions, religious passion is the most
powerful and the most lively.  It generates itself, whether by
affirmation or negation, with an equal fanaticism, some obstinately
affirming the god that they have made in their own image, the others
denying God with rashness, as if they had been able to understand and
to lay waste by a single thought all that world of infinity which
pertains to His great name.

   Philosophers have not sufficiently considered the physiological
fact of religion in humanity, for in truth religion exists apart from
all dogmatic discussion.  It is a faculty of the human soul just as
much as intelligence and love.  While man exists, so will religion. 
Considered in this light, it is nothing but the need of an infinite
idealism, a need which justifies every aspiration for progress, which
inspires every devotion, which alone prevents virtue and honour from
being mere words, serving to exploit the vanity of the weak and the
foolish to the profit of the strong and the clever.

   It is to this innate need of belief that one might justly give the
name of natural religion; and all which tends to clip the wings of
these beliefs is, on the religious plane, in opposition to nature. 
The essence of the object of religion is mystery, since faith begins
with the unknown, abandoning the rest to the investigations of
science.  Doubt is, moreover, the mortal enemy of faith; faith feels
that the intervention of {3} the divine being is necessary to fill the
abyss which separates the finite from the infinite, and it affirms
this intervention with all the warmth of its heart, with all the
docility of its intelligence.  If separated from this act of faith,
the need of religion finds no satisfaction, and turns to scepticism
and to despair.  But in order that the act of faith should not be an
act of folly, reason wishes it to be directed and ruled.  By what?  By
science?  We have seen that science can do nothing here.  By the civil
authority?  It is absurd.  Are our prayers to be superintended by

   There remains, then, moral authority, which alone is able to
constitute dogma and establish the discipline of worship, in concert
this time with the civil authority, but not in obedience to its
orders.  It is necessary, in a word, that faith should give to the
religious need a real satisfaction, --- a satisfaction entire,
permanent and indubitable.  To obtain that, it is necessary to have
the absolute and invariable affirmation of a dogma preserved by an
authorized hierarchy.  It is necessary to have an efficacious cult,
giving, with an absolute faith, a substantial realization of the
symbols of belief.

   Religion thus understood being the only one which can satisfy the
natural need of religion, it must be the only really natural religion.
 We arrive, without help from others, at this double definition, that
true natural religion is revealed religion.  The true revealed
religion is the hierarchical and traditional religion, which affirms
itself absolutely, above human discussion, by communion in faith,
hope, and charity.

   Representing the moral authority, and realizing it by the efficacy
of its ministry, the priesthood is as holy and infallible as humanity
is subject to vice and to error.  The priest, {4} "qua" priest, is
always the representative of God.  Of little account are the faults or
even the crimes of man.  When Alexander VI consecrated his bishops, it
was not the poisoner who laid his hands upon them, it was the pope. 
Pope Alexander VI never corrupted or falsified the dogmas which
condemned him, or the sacraments which in his hands saved others, and
did not justify him.  At all times and in all places there have been
liars and criminals, but in the hierarchical and divinely authorized
Church there have never been, and there will never be, either bad
popes or bad priests.  "Bad" and "priest" form an oxymoron.

   We have mentioned Alexander VI, and we think that this name will be
sufficient without other memories as justly execrated as his being
brought up against us.  Great criminals have been able to dishonour
themselves doubly because of the sacred character with which they were
invested, but they had not the power to dishonour that character,
which remains always radiant and splendid above fallen humanity.<>

   We have said that there is no religion without mysteries; let us
add that there are no mysteries without symbols.  The symbol, being
the formula or the expression of the mystery, only expresses its
unknown depth by paradoxical images borrowed from the known.  The
symbolic form, having for its object to characterize what is above
scientific reason, should necessarily find itself without that reason:
hence the celebrated and perfectly just remark of a Father of the
Church: "I believe because it is absurd.  Credo quia absurdum."

   If science were to affirm what it did not know, it would {5}
destroy itself.  Science will then never be able to perform the work
of faith, any more than faith can decide in a matter of science.  An
affirmation of faith with which science is rash enough to meddle can
then be nothing but an absurdity for it, just as a scientific
statement, if given us as an article of faith, would be an absurdity
on the religious plane.  To know and to believe are two terms which
can never be confounded.

   It would be equally impossible to oppose the one to the other.  It
is impossible, in fact, to believe the contrary of what one knows
without ceasing, for that very reason, to know it; and it is equally
impossible to achieve a knowledge contrary to what one believes
without ceasing immediately to believe.

   To deny or even to contest the decisions of faith in the name of
science is to prove that one understands neither science nor faith: in
fine, the mystery of a God of three persons is not a problem of
mathematics; the incarnation of the Word is not a phenomenon in
obstetrics; the scheme of redemption stands apart from the criticism
of the historian.  Science is absolutely powerless to decide whether
we are right or wrong in believing or disbelieving dogma; it can only
observe the results of belief, and if faith evidently improves men,
if, moreover, faith is in itself, considered as a physiological fact,
evidently a necessity and a force, science will certainly be obliged
to admit it, and take the wise part of always reckoning with it.

   Let us now dare to affirm that there exists an immense fact equally
appreciable both by faith and science; a fact which makes God visible
(in a sense) upon earth; a fact incontestable and of universal
bearing; this fact is the manifestation in the world, beginning from
the epoch when the {6} Christian revelation was made, of a spirit
unknown to the ancients, of a spirit evidently divine, more positive
than science in its works, in its aspirations, more magnificently
ideal than the highest poetry, a spirit for which it was necessary to
create a new name, a name altogether unheard<> in the sanctuaries of antiquity.  This name was created,
and we shall demonstrate that this name, this word, is, in religion,
as much for science as for faith, the expression of the absolute.  The
word is CHARITY, and the spirit of which we speak is the "spirit of

   Before charity, faith prostrates itself, and conquered science
bows. There is here evidently something greater than humanity; charity
proves by its works that it is not a dream.  It is stronger than all
the passions; it triumphs over suffering and over death; it makes God
understood by every heart, and seems already to fill eternity by the
begun realization of its legitimate hopes.

   Before charity alive and in action who is the Proudhon who dares
blaspheme?  Who is the Voltaire who dares laugh?

   Pile one upon the other the sophisms of Diderot, the critical
arguments of Strauss, the "Ruins" of Volney, so well named, for this
man could make nothing but "ruins," the blasphemies of the revolution
whose voice was extinguished once in blood, and once again in the
silence of contempt; join to it all that the future may hold for us of
monstrosities and of vain dreams; then will there come the humblest
and the simplest of all sisters of charity, --- the world will leave
there all its follies, and all its crimes, and all its dreams, to bow
before this sublime reality. {7}

   Charity! word divine, sole word which makes God understood, word
which contains a universal revelation!  "Spirit" of "charity,"
alliance of two words, which are a complete solution and a complete
promise!  To what question, in fine, do these two words not find an

   What is God for us, if not the spirit of charity?  What is
orthodoxy? Is it not the spirit of charity which refuses to discuss
faith lest it should trouble the confidence of simple souls, and
disturb the peace of universal communion?<>
 And the universal church, is it any other thing than a communion in
the spirit of charity?  It is by the spirit of charity that the church
is infallible.  It is the spirit of charity which is the divine virtue
of the priesthood.

   Duty of man, guarantee of his rights, proof of his immortality,
eternity of happiness commencing for him upon the earth, glorious aim
given to his existence, goal and path of all his struggles, perfection
of his individual, civil and religious morality, the spirit of charity
understands all, and is able to hope all, undertake all, and
accomplish all.

   It is by the spirit of charity that Jesus expiring on the cross
gave a son to His mother in the person of St. John, and, triumphing
over the anguish of the most frightful torture, gave a cry of
deliverance and of salvation, saying, "Father, into Thy hands I
commend my spirit!"

   It is by charity that twelve Galilean artisans conquered the world;
they loved truth more than life, and they went without followers to
speak it to peoples and to kings; tested by torture, {8} they were
found faithful.  They showed to the multitude a living immortality in
their death, and they watered the earth with a blood whose heat could
not be extinguished, because they were burning with the ardours of

   It is by charity that the Apostles built up their Creed.  They said
that to believe together was worth more than to doubt separately; they
constituted the hierarchy on the basis of obedience --- rendered so
noble and so great by the spirit of charity, that to serve in this
manner is to reign; they formulated the faith of all and the hope of
all, and they put this Creed in the keeping of the charity of all. 
Woe to the egoist who appropriates to himself a single word of this
inheritance of the Word; he is a deicide, who wishes to dismember the
body of the Lord.

   This creed is the holy ark of charity; whoso touches it is stricken
by eternal death, for charity withdraws itself from him.  It is the
sacred inheritance of our children, it is the price of the blood of
our fathers!

   It is by charity that the martyrs took consolation in the prisons
of the Caesars, and won over to their belief even their warders and
their executioners.

   It is in the name of charity that St. Martin of Tours protested
against the torture of the Priscillians,<> and separated {9} himself from
the communion of the tyrant who wished to impose faith by the sword.

   It is by charity that so great a crowd of saints have forced the
world to accept them as expiation for the crimes committed in the name
of religion itself, and the scandals of the profaned sanctuary.

   It is by charity that St. Vincent de Paul and Fenelon compelled the
admiration of even the most impious centuries, and quelled in advance
the laughter of the children of Voltaire before the imposing dignity
of their virtues. 10}

   It is by charity, finally, that the folly of the cross has become
the wisdom of the nations, because every noble heart has understood
that it is greater to believe with those who love, and who devote
themselves, than to doubt with the egotists and with the slaves of
pleasure. {11}

                               FIRST ARTICLE

                       SOLUTION OF THE FIRST PROBLEM

                               THE TRUE GOD

   GOD can only be defined by faith; science can neither deny nor
affirm that He exists.

   God is the absolute object of human faith.  In the infinite, He is
the supreme and creative intelligence of order.  In the world, He is
the spirit of charity.

   Is the Universal Being a fatal machine which eternally grinds down
intelligences by chance, or a providential intelligence which directs
forces in order to ameliorate minds?

   The first hypothesis is repugnant to reason; it is pessimistic and

   Science and reason ought then to accept the second.

   Yes, Proudhon, God is an hypothesis, but an hypothesis so
necessary, that without it, all theorems become absurd or doubtful.

   For initiates of the Qabalah, God is the absolute unity which
creates and animates numbers.

   The unity of the human intelligence demonstrates the unity of God.

   The key of numbers is that of creeds, because signs are {12}
analogical figures of the harmony which proceeds from numbers.

   Mathematics could never demonstrate blind fatality, because they
are the expression of the exactitude which is the character of the
highest reason.

   Unity demonstrates the analogy of contraries; it is the foundation,
the equilibrium, and the end of numbers.  The act of faith starts from
unity, and returns to unity.

{Illustration on page 13 described:

This is titled below: "THE SIGN OF THE GRAND ARCANUM G.'. A.'."

The figure is contained within a rectangle of width about half height.
 The main element is a circle, bottom half shaded, pierced through on
the vertical diameter from below by a vertical sword or baton.  The
"sword" has a right hand holding the pommel below, issuing from a
cloud to lower right. The hilt is not evident simply, but suggested by
two tails of serpents crossing just below the lower limit of the
circle.  To either side of the pommel beneath the snake tails are the
letters "FIN" to left and "AL" to right.  The point of the sword above
the upper limit of the circle is buttoned by a fleur-de-lis.  The two
serpents are entwined about the sword to form a caduceus with two
circles vertically circumscribed within the greater circle.  These
serpents are billed.  There are two shaded bands on the two horizontal
diameters of the serpent circles.  Five Hebrew letters are along the
sword, only the topmost upon the blade and the others beneath: Top
quarter --- HB:Yod , next quarter --- HB:Aleph , center --- HB:Shin ,
next quarter is probably but not certainly HB:Mem , bottom quarter is
an inverted HB:Heh .  The upper half of the upper serpent circle has
Aleph-Heh-Yod-Heh just above the diameter bar, and the lower quarter
of the lower serpent circle has the same inverted just below the
diameter bar. There is an "X" of 

thin line diameters across the large circle.  At the horizontal
diameter of the large circle, just above to the left "THROSNE" and to
the right "DE JVSTICE".  Oriented about the circle to be read from the
center are the following words: At left outside "COVRONNE", at top and
split "MED" "IATE", at right "ECLESIASTIQVE", at bottom and split
"DIR" "ECTE".  Two words in italics extend just above the horizontal
diameter in invisible extensis and through the rectangle: to left
"HARMONIE", to right "CEELESTE".  Above the button of the sword is a
small circle, and to the left of that "Tzaddi-Dalet-Qof", to the right
"Peh-Lamed-Kophfinal" (possibly "Mem-Lamed-Kophfinal" or
"Samekh-Lamed-Kophfinal").  Below this, interrupted by the button are
two texts: to the right: "(?)Aleph-Samekh-Peh-Kophfinal
Bet-Shin-Vau-Shin-Nunfinal Heh-Bet-Yod-Resh " (First word doubtful,
text referred to Dan. 8, where it must be altered from Dan. 8, 2:
"Vau-Aleph-Nun-Yod  Bet-Shin-Vau-Shin-Nunfinal  Heh-Bet-Yod-Resh-Heh"
"I was in Shushan castle".  This variant could be translated as
"sheath in Shushan castle".)  Beneath this: "DANIEL ch. 8."  The text
to the left cannot be rendered accurately owing to similarity of
letter shapes and no direct bearing to the text cited.  It looks like:
"Aleph-Taw-Tet-Dalet-Resh-Vau-Shin  Samekh-Resh-Vau-Koph-Yod", but
that is not likely to be even close. Beneath this is the citation
"Nehemie ch.1 v.1" which does not contain any part of this versicle,
but which does mention the castle at Shusah, cited in the versicle to
the right.  Possibly the whole thing is a continuation of a paraphrase
of Daniel 8, 2, with the text unclear because of letter shapes poorly
written.  Lastly, to the left outside of the upper serpent circle:
"SENS"; and to the right inside the same: "RASON" --- both oriented to
be read from the center.} {13}

   We shall now sketch out an explanation of the Bible by the aid of
numbers, for the Bible is the book of the images of God.

   We shall ask numbers to give us the reason of the dogmas of eternal
religion; numbers will always reply by reuniting themselves in the
synthesis of unity.

   The following pages are simply outlines of qabalistic hypotheses;
they stand apart from faith, and we indicate them only as curiosities
of research.  It is no part of our task to make innovations in dogma,
and what we assert in our character as an initiate is entirely
subordinate to our submission in our character as a Christian.<>


                                OF NUMBERS



   UNITY is the principle and the synthesis of numbers; it is the idea
of God and of man; it is the alliance of reason and of faith.

   Faith cannot be opposed to reason; it is made necessary by love, it
is identical with hope.  To love is to believe and hope; and this
triple outburst of the soul is called virtue, because, in order to
make it, courage is necessary.  But would there be any courage in
that, if doubt were not possible?  Now, to be able to doubt, is to
doubt.  Doubt is the force {14} which balances faith, and it
constitutes the whole merit of faith.

   Nature herself induces us to believe; but the formulae of faith are
social expressions of the tendencies of faith at a given epoch.  It is
that which proves the Church to be infallible, evidentially and in

   God is necessarily the most unknown of all beings because He is
only defined by negative experience; He is all that we are not, He is
the infinite opposed to the finite by hypothesis.

   Faith, and consequently hope and love, are so free that man, far
from being able to impose them on others, does not even impose them on

   "These," says religion, "are graces."  Now, is it conceivable that
grace should be subject to demand or exaction; that is to say, could
any one wish to force men to a thing which comes freely and without
price from heaven? One must not do more than desire it for them.

   To reason concerning faith is to think irrationally, since the
object of faith is outside the universe of reason.  If one asks me:
--- "Is there a God?" I reply, "I believe it."  "But are you sure of
it?" --- "If I were sure of it, I should not believe it, I should know

   The formulation of faith is to agree upon the terms of the common

   Faith begins where science ends.  To enlarge the scope of science
is apparently to diminish that of faith; but in reality, it is to
enlarge it in equal proportion, for it is to amplify its base.

   One can only define the unknown by its supposed and supposable
relations with the known. {15}

   Analogy was the sole dogma of the ancient magi.  This dogma may
indeed be called "mediator," for it is half scientific, half
hypothetical; half reason, and half poetry.  This dogma has been, and
will always be, the father of all others.

   What is the Man-God?  He who realizes, in the most human life, the
most divine ideal.

   Faith is a divination of intelligence and of love, when these are
directed by the pointings of nature and of reason.

   It is then of the essence of the things of faith to be inaccessible
to science, doubtful for philosophy, and undefined for certainty.

   Faith is an hypothetical realization and a conventional
determination of the last aims of hope.  It is the attachment to the
visible sign of the things which one does not see.

   "Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things
not seen."

   To affirm without folly that God is or that He is not, one must
begin with a reasonable or unreasonable definition of God.  Now, this
definition, in order to be reasonable, must be hypothetical,
analogical, and the negation of the known finite.  It is possible to
deny a particular God, but the absolute God can no more be denied than
He can be proved; He is a reasonable supposition in whom one believes.

   "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God," said the
Master; to see with the heart is to believe; and if this faith is
attached to the true good, it can never be deceived, provided that it
does not seek to define too much in accordance with the dangerous
inductions which spring from personal ignorance.  Our judgments in
questions of faith apply to {16} ourselves; it will be done to us as
we have believed; that is to say, we create ourselves in the image of
our ideal.

   "Those who make their gods become like unto them," says the
psalmist, "and all they that put their trust in them."

   The divine ideal of the ancient world made the civilization which
came to an end, and one must not despair of seeing the god of our
barbarous fathers become the devil of our more enlightened children. 
One makes devils with cast-off gods,<> and Satan is only so incoherent and so
formless because he is made up of all the rags of ancient theogonies. 
He is the sphinx without a secret, the riddle without an answer, the
mystery without truth, the absolute without reality and without light.

   Man is the son of God because God, manifested, realized, and
incarnated upon earth, called Himself the Son of man.

   It is after having made God in the image of His intelligence and of
His love, that humanity has understood the sublime Word who said "Let
there be light!"

   Man is the form of the divine thought, and God is the idealized
synthesis of human thought.

   Thus the Word of God reveals man, and the Word of man reveals God.

   Man is the God of the world, and God is the man of heaven.

   Before saying "God wills," man has willed.

   In order to understand and honour Almighty God, man must first be

   Had he obeyed and abstained from the fruit of the tree of knowledge
through fear, man would have been innocent and {17} stupid as the
lamb, sceptical and rebellious as the angel of light.  He himself cut
the umbilical cord of his simplicity, and, falling free upon the
earth, dragged God with him in his fall.

   And therefore, from this sublime fall, he rises again glorious,
with the great convict of Calvary, and enters with Him into the
kingdom of heaven.

   For the kingdom of heaven belongs to intelligence and love, both
children of liberty.

   God has shown liberty to man in the image of a lovely woman, and in
order to test his courage, He made the phantom of death pass between
her and him.

   Man loved, and felt himself to be God; he gave for her what God had
just bestowed upon him --- eternal hope.

   He leapt towards his bride across the shadow of death.

   Man possessed liberty; he had embraced life.

   Expiate now thy glory, O Prometheus!

   Thy heart, ceaselessly devoured, cannot die; it is thy vulture, it
is Jupiter, who will die!

   One day we shall awake at last from the painful dreams of a
tormented life; our ordeal will be finished, and we shall be
sufficiently strong against sorrow to be immortal.

   Then we shall live in God with a more abundant life, and we shall
descend into His works with the light of His thought, we shall be
borne away into the infinite by the whisper of His love.

   We shall be without doubt the elder brethren of a new race, the
angels of posterity.

   Celestial messengers, we shall wander in immensity, and the stars
will be our gleaming ships. {18}

   We shall transform ourselves into sweet visions to calm weeping
eyes; we shall gather radiant lilies in unknown meadows, and we shall
scatter their dew upon the earth.

   We shall touch the eyelid of the sleeping child, and rejoice the
heart of its mother with the spectacle of the beauty of her
well-beloved son!


                                THE BINARY

   THE binary is more particularly the number of woman, mate of man
and mother of society.

   Man is love in intelligence; woman is intelligence in love.

   Woman is the smile of the Creator content with himself, and it is
after making her that He rested, says the divine parable.

   Woman stands before man because she is mother, and all is forgiven
her in advance, because she brings forth in sorrow.

   Woman initiated herself first into immortality through death; then
man saw her to be so beautiful, and understood her to be so generous,
that he refused to survive her, and loved her more than his life, more
than his eternal happiness.

   Happy outlaw, since she has been given to him as companion in his

   But the children of Cain have revolted against the mother of Abel;
they have enslaved their mother.

   The beauty of woman has become a prey for the brutality of such men
as cannot love.

   Thus woman closed her heart as if it were a secret sanctuary, and
said to men unworthy of her: "I am virgin, {19} but I will to become
mother, and my son will teach you to love me."

   O Eve!  Salutation and adoration in thy fall!

   O Mary!  Blessings and adoration in thy sufferings and in thy

   Crucified and holy one who didst survive thy God that thou mightst
bury thy son, be thou for us the final word of the divine revelation!

   Moses called God "Lord"; Jesus called Him "My Father," and we,
thinking of thee, may say to Providence, "You are our mother."

   Children of woman, let us forgive fallen woman!

   Children of woman, let us adore regenerate woman!

   Children of woman, who have slept upon her breast, been cradled in
her arms, and consoled by her caresses, let us love her, and let us
love each other!


                                THE TERNARY

   THE Ternary is the number of creation.

   God creates Himself eternally, and the infinite which He fills with
His works is an incessant and infinite creation.

   Supreme love contemplates itself in beauty as in a mirror, and It
essays all forms as adornments, for It is the lover of life.

   Man also affirms himself and creates himself; he adorns himself
with his trophies of victory, he enlightens himself with his own
conceptions, he clothes himself with his works as with a wedding
garment. {20}

   The great week of creation has been imitated by human genius,
divining the forms of nature.

   Every day has furnished a new revelation, every new king of the
world has been for a day the image and the incarnation of God! 
Sublime dream which explains the mysteries of India, and justifies all

   The lofty conception of the man-God corresponds to the creation of
Adam, and Christianity, like the first days of man in the earthly
paradise, has been only an aspiration and a widowhood.

   We wait for the worship of the bride and of the mother; we shall
aspire to the wedding of the New Covenant.

   Then the poor, the blind, the outlaws of the old world will be
invited to the feast, and will receive a wedding garment.  They will
gaze the one upon the other with inexpressible tenderness and a smile
that is ineffable because they have wept so long.


                              THE QUATERNARY

   THE Quaternary is the number of force.  It is the ternary completed
by its product, the rebellious unity reconciled to the sovereign

   In the first fury of life, man, having forgotten his mother, no
longer understood God but as an inflexible and jealous father.

   The sombre Saturn, armed with his parricidal scythe, set himself to
devour his children.

   Jupiter had eyebrows which shook Olympus; Jehovah wielded thunders
which deafened the solitudes of Sinai. {21}

   Nevertheless, the father of men, being on occasion drunken like
Noah, let the world perceive the mysteries of life.

   Psyche, made divine by her torments, became the bride of Eros;
Adonis, raised from death, found again his Venus in Olympus; Job,
victorious over evil, recovered more than he had lost.

   The law is a test of courage.

   To love life more than one fears the menaces of death is to merit

   The elect are those who dare; woe to the timid!

   Thus the slaves of law, who make themselves the tyrants of
conscience and the servants of fear, and those who begrudge that man
should hope, and the Pharisees of all the synagogues and of all the
churches, are those who receive the reproofs and the curses of the

   Was not the Christ excommunicated and crucified by the synagogue?

   Was not Savonarola burned by the order of the sovereign pontiff of
the Christian religion?

   Are not the Pharisees to-day just what they were in the time of

   If any one speaks to them in the name of intelligence and love,
will they listen?

   In rescuing the children of liberty from the tyranny of the
Pharaohs, Moses inaugurated the reign of the Father.

   In breaking the insupportable yoke of mosaic pharisaism, Jesus
welcomed all men to the brotherhood of the only son of God.

   When the last ideals fall, when the last material chains of
conscience break, when the last of them that killed the {22} prophets
and the last of them that stifled the Word are confounded, then will
be the reign of the Holy Ghost.

   Then, Glory to the Father who drowned the host of Pharaoh in the
Red Sea!

   Glory to the Son, who tore the veil of the temple, and whose cross,
overweighing the crown of the Caesars, broke the forehead of the
Caesars against the earth!

   Glory to the Holy Ghost, who shall sweep from the earth by His
terrible breath all the thieves and all the executioners, to make room
for the banquet of the children of God!

   Glory to the Holy Ghost, who has promised victory over earth and
over heaven to the angel of liberty!

   The angel of liberty was born before the dawn of the first day,
before even the awakening of intelligence, and God called him the
morning star.

   O Lucifer!  Voluntarily and disdainfully thou didst detach thyself
from the heaven where the sun drowned thee in his splendour, to plow
with thine own rays the unworked fields of night!

   Thou shinest when the sun sets, and thy sparkling gaze precedes the

   Thou fallest to rise again; thou tastest of death to understand
life better!

   For the ancient glories of the world, thou art the evening star;
for truth renascent, the lovely star of dawn.

   Liberty is not licence, for licence is tyranny.

   Liberty is the guardian of duty, because it reclaims right.<>

   Lucifer, of whom the dark ages have made the genius of {23} evil,
will be truly the angel of light when, having conquered liberty at the
price of infamy, he will make use of it to submit himself to eternal
order, inaugurating thus the glories of voluntary obedience.

   Right is only the root of duty; one must possess in order to give.

   This is how a lofty and profound poetry explains the fall of the

   God hath given to His spirits light and life; then He said to them:

   "What is --- to love?" replied the spirits.

   "To love is to give oneself to others," replied God.  "Those who
love will suffer, but they will be loved."

   "We have the right to give nothing, and we wish to suffer nothing,"
said the spirits, hating love.

   "Remain in your right," answered God, "and let us separate!  I and
Mine wish to suffer and even to die, to love.  It is our duty!"

   The fallen angel is then he who, from the beginning, refused to
love; he does not love, and that is his whole torture; he does not
give, and that is his poverty; he does not suffer, and that is his
nothingness; he does not die, and that is his exile.

   The fallen angel is not Lucifer the light-bearer; it is Satan, who
calumniated love.

   To be rich is to give; to give nothing is to be poor; to live is to
love; to love nothing is to be dead; to be happy is to devote oneself;
to exist only for oneself is to cast away oneself, and to exile
oneself in hell.

   Heaven is the harmony of generous thoughts; hell is the conflict of
cowardly instincts. {24}

   The man of right is Cain who kills Abel from envy; the man of duty
is Abel who dies for Cain for love.

   And such has been the mission of Christ, the great Abel of

   It is not for right that we should dare all, it is for duty.

   Duty is the expansion and the enjoyment of liberty; isolated right
is the father of slavery.

   Duty is devotion; right is selfishness.

   Duty is sacrifice; right is theft and rapine.

   Duty is love, and right is hate.

   Duty is infinite life; right is eternal death.

   If one must fight to conquer right, it is only to acquire the power
of duty: what use have we for freedom, unless to love and to devote
ourselves to God?

   If one must break the law, it is when law imprisons love in fear.

   "He that saveth his life shall lose it," says the holy Book; "and
he who consents to lose it will save it."

   Duty is love; perish every obstacle to love!  Silence, ye oracles
of hate!  Destruction to the false gods of selfishness and fear! 
Shame to the slaves, the misers of love!

   God loves prodigal children!


                                THE QUINARY

   THE Quinary is the number of religion, for it is the number of God
united to that of woman.<> {25}

   Faith is not the stupid credulity of an awestruck ignorance.

   Faith is the consciousness and the confidence of Love.

   Faith is the cry of reason, which persists in denying the absurd,
even in the presence of the unknown.

   Faith is a sentiment necessary to the soul, just as breathing is to
life; it is the dignity of courage, and the reality of enthusiasm.

   Faith does not consist of the affirmation of this symbol or that,
but of a genuine and constant aspiration towards the truths which are
veiled by all symbolisms.

   If a man rejects an unworthy idea of divinity, breaks its false
images, revolts against hateful idolaters, you will call him an

   The authors of the persecutions in fallen Rome called the first
Christians atheists, because they did not adore the idols of Caligula
or of Nero.

   To deny a religion, even to deny all religions rather than adhere
to formulae which conscience rejects, is a courageous and sublime act
of faith.  Every man who suffers for his convictions is a martyr of

   He explains himself badly, it may be, but he prefers justice and
truth to everything; do not condemn him without understanding him.

   To believe in the supreme truth is not to define it, and to declare
that one believes in it is to recognize that one does not know it.

   The Apostle St. Paul declares all faith contained in these two
things: --- To believe that God is, and that He rewards them who seek
Him. {26}

   Faith is a greater thing than all religions, because it states the
articles of belief with less precision.

   Any dogma constitutes but a belief, and belongs to our particular
communion; faith is a sentiment which is common to the whole of

   The more one discusses with the object of obtaining greater
accuracy, the less one believes; every new dogma is a belief which a
sect appropriates to itself, and thus, in some sort, steals from
universal faith.

   Let us leave sectarians to make and remake their dogmas; let us
leave the superstitious to detail and formulate their superstitions. 
As the Master said, "Let the dead bury their dead!"  Let us believe in
the indicible truth; let us believe in that Absolute which reason
admits without understanding it; let us believe in what we feel
without knowing it!

   Let us believe in the supreme reason!

   Let us believe in Infinite Love, and pity the stupidities of
scholasticism and the barbarities of false religion!

   O man!  Tell me what thou hopest, and I will tell thee what thou
art worth.

   Thou dost pray, thou dost fast, thou dost keep vigil; dost thou
then believe that so thou wilt escape alone, or almost alone, from the
enormous ruin of mankind --- devoured by a jealous God?  Thou art
impious, and a hypocrite.

   Dost thou turn life into an orgie, and hope for the slumber of
nothingness?  Thou art sick, and insensate.

   Art thou ready to suffer as others and for others, and hope for the
salvation of all?  Thou art a wise and just man.

   To hope is to fear not.

   To be afraid of God, what blasphemy! {27}

   The act of hope is prayer.

   Prayer is the flowering of the soul in eternal wisdom and in
eternal love.

   It is the gaze of the spirit towards truth, and the sigh of the
heart towards supreme beauty.

   It is the smile of the child upon its mother.

   It is the murmur of the lover, who reaches out towards the kisses
of his mistress.

   It is the soft joy of a loving soul as it expands in an ocean of

   It is the sadness of the bride in the absence of the bridegroom.

   It is the sigh of the traveller who thinks of his fatherland.

   It is the thought of the poor man who works to support his wife and

   Let us pray in silence; let us raise toward our unknown Father a
look of confidence and of love; let us accept with faith and
resignation the part which He assigns to us in the toils of life, and
every throb of our hearts will be a word of prayer!

   Have we need to inform God of what we ask from Him?  Does not He
know what is necessary for us?

   If we weep, let us offer Him our tears; if we rejoice, let us turn
towards Him our smile; if He smite us, let us bow the head; if He
caress us, let us sleep within His arms!

   Our prayer will be perfect, when we pray without knowing whom we

   Prayer is not a noise which strikes the ear; it is a silence which
penetrates the heart. {28}

   Soft tears come to moisten the eyes, and sighs escape like incense

   One feels oneself in love, ineffably in love, with all that is
beauty, truth, and justice; one throbs with a new life, and one fears
no more to die.  For prayer is the eternal life of intelligence and
love; it is the life of God upon earth.

   Love one another --- that is the Law and the Prophets!  Meditate,
and understand this word.

   And when you have understood, read no more, seek no more, doubt no
more --- love!

   Be no more wise, be no more learned --- love!  That is the whole
doctrine of true religion; religion means charity, and God Himself is
only love.

   I have already said to you, to love is to give.

   The impious man is he who absorbs others.

   The pious man is he who loses himself in humanity.

   If the heart of man concentrate in himself the fire with which God
animates it, it is a hell which devours all, and fills itself only
with ashes; if he radiates it without, it becomes a tender sun of

   Man owes himself to his family; his family owes itself to the
fatherland; and the fatherland to humanity.

   The egoism of man merits isolation and despair; that of the family,
ruin and exile; that of the fatherland, war and invasion.

   The man who isolates himself from every human love, saying, "I will
serve God," deceives himself.  For, said St. John the Apostle, if he
loveth not his neighbour whom he hath see, how shall he love God whom
he hath not seen?

   One must render to God that which is God's, but one must not refuse
even to Caesar that which is Caesar's. {29}

   God is He who gives life; Caesar can only give death.

   One must love God, and not fear Caesar; as it is written in the
Holy Book, "He that taketh the sword shall perish by the sword."

   You wish to be good?  Then be just.  You wish to be just?  Then be

   The vices which make man like the brute are the first enemies of
his liberty.

   Consider the drunkard, and tell me if this unclean brute can be
called free!

   The miser curses the life of his father, and, like the crow,
hungers for corpses.

   The goal of the ambitious man is --- ruins; it is the delirium of
envy! The debauchee spits upon the breast of his mother, and fills
with abortions the entrails of death.

   All these loveless hearts are punished by the most cruel of all
tortures, hate.

   Because --- take it to heart! --- the expiation is implicit in the

   The man who does evil is like an earthen pot ill-made; he will
break himself: fatality wills it.

   With the debris of the worlds, God makes stars; with the debris of
souls He makes angels.


                                THE SENARY

   THE Senary is the number of initiation by ordeal; it is the number
of equilibrium, it is the hieroglyph of the knowledge of Good and
Evil. {30}

   He who seeks the origin of evil, seeks the source of what is not.

   Evil is the disordered appetite of good, the unfruitful attempt of
an unskilful will.

   Every one possesses the fruit of his work, and poverty is only the
spur to toil.

   For the flock of men, suffering is like the shepherd dog, who bites
the wool of the sheep to put them back in the right way.

   It is because of shadow that we are able to see light; because of
cold that we feel heat; because of pain that we are sensible to

   Evil is then for us the occasion and the beginning of good.

   But, in the dreams of our imperfect intelligence, we accuse the
work of Providence, through failing to understand it.

   We resemble the ignorant person who judges the picture by the
beginning of the sketch, and says, when the head is done, "What!  Has
this figure no body?"

   Nature remains calm, and accomplishes its work.

   The ploughshare is not cruel when it tears the bosom of the earth,
and the great revolutions of the world are the husbandry of God.

   There is a place for everything: to savage peoples, barbarous
masters; to cattle, butchers; to men, judges and fathers.

   If time could change the sheep into lions, they would eat the
butchers and the shepherds.

   Sheep never change because they do not instruct themselves; but
peoples instruct themselves.

   Shepherds and butchers of the people, you are then {31} right to
regard as your enemies those who speak to your flock!

   Flocks who know yet only your shepherds, and who wish to remain
ignorant of their dealings with the butchers, it is excusable that you
should stone them who humiliate you and disturb you, in speaking to
you of your rights.

   O Christ!  The authorities condemn Thee, Thy disciples deny Thee,
the people curses Thee, and demands Thy murder; only Thy mother weeps
for Thee, even God abandons Thee!

   "Eli!  Eli! lama sabachthani!"


                               THE SEPTENARY

   THE Septenary is the great biblical number.  It is the key of the
Creation in the books of Moses and the symbol of all religion.  Moses
left five books, and the Law is complete in two testaments.

   The Bible is not a history, it is a collection of poems, a book of
allegories and images.

   Adam and Eve are only the primitive types of humanity; the tempter
serpent is time which tests; the Tree of Knowledge is 'right'; the
expiation by toil is duty.

   Cain and Abel represent the flesh and the spirit, force and
intelligence, violence and harmony.

   The giants are those who usurped the earth in ancient times; the
flood was a great revolution.

   The ark is tradition preserved in a family: religion at this period
becomes a mystery and the property of the race.  Ham was cursed for
having revealed it. {32}

   Nimrod and Babel are the two primitive allegories of the despot,
and of the universal empire which has always filled the dreams of men,
--- a dream whose fulfilment was sought successively by the Assyrians,
the Medes, the Persians, Alexander, Rome, Napoleon, the successors of
Peter the Great, and always unfinished because of the dispersion of
interests, symbolized by the confusion of tongues.

   The universal empire could not realize itself by force, but by
intelligence and love.  Thus, to Nimrod, the man of savage 'right,'
the Bible opposed Abraham, the man of duty, who goes voluntarily into
exile in order to seek liberty and strife in a strange country, which
he seizes by virtue of his "Idea."

   He has a sterile wife, his thought, and a fertile slave, his force;
but when force has produced its fruit, thought becomes fertile; and
the son of intelligence drives into exile the child of force.  The man
of intelligence is submitted to rude tests; he must confirm his
conquests by sacrifices. God orders him to immolate his son, that is
to say, doubt ought to test dogma, and the intellectual man should be
ready to sacrifice everything on the altar of supreme reason.  Then
God intervenes: universal reason yields to the efforts of labour, and
shows herself to science; the material side of dogma is alone
immolated. .  This is the meaning of the ram caught by its horns in a
thicket.  The history of Abraham is, then, a symbol in the ancient
manner, and contains a lofty revelation of the destinies of the human
soul.  Taken literally, it is an absurd and revolting story.  Did not
St. Augustine take literally the Golden Ass of Apuleius?

   Poor great men! {33}

   The history of Isaac is another legend.  Rebecca is the  type of
the oriental woman, laborious, hospitable, partial in her affections,
shrewd and wily in her manoeuvres.  Jacob and Esau are again the two
types of Cain and Abel; but here Abel avenges himself: the emancipated
intelligence triumphs by cunning.  The whole of the genius of the Jews
is in the character of Jacob, the patient and laborious supplanter who
yields to the wrath of Esau, becomes rich, and buys his brother's
forgiveness.  One must never forget that, when the ancients want to
philosophize, they tell a story.

   The history or legend of Joseph contains, in germ, the whole genius
of the Gospel; and the Christ, misunderstood by His people, must often
have wept in reading over again that scene, where the Governor of
Egypt throws himself on the neck of Benjamin, with the great cry of "I
am Joseph!"

   Israel becomes the people of God, that is to say, the conservator
of the idea, and the depositaries of the word.  This idea is that of
human independence, and of royalty, by means of work; but one hides it
with care, like a precious seed.  A painful and indelible sign is
imprinted on the initiates; every image of the truth is forbidden, and
the children of Jacob watch, sword in hand, around the unity of the
tabernacle.  Hamor and Shechem wish to introduce themselves forcibly
into the holy family, and perish with their people after undergoing a
feigned initiation.  In order to dominate the vulgar, it is already
necessary that the sanctuary should surround itself with sacrifices
and with terror.

   The servitude of the children of Jacob paves the way for their
deliverance: for they have an idea, and one does not enchain an idea;
they have a religion, and one does not {34} violate a religion; they
are, in fine, a people, and one does not enchain a real people. 
Persecution stirs up avengers; the idea incarnates itself in a man;
Moses springs up; Pharaoh falls; and the column of smoke and flame,
which goes before a freed people, advances majestically into the

   Christ is priest and king by intelligence and by love.

   He has received the holy unction, the unction of genius, faith and
virtue, which is force.

   He comes when the priesthood is worn out, when the old symbols have
no more virtue, when the beacon of intelligence is extinguished.

   He comes to recall Israel to life, and if he cannot galvanize
Israel, slain by the Pharisees, into life, he will resurrect the world
given over to the dead worship of idols.

   Christ is the right to do one's duty.

   Man has the right to do his duty, and he has no other right.

   O man! thou hast the right to resist even unto death any who
prevents thee from doing thy duty.

   Mother!  Thy child is drowning; a man prevents thee from helping
him; thou strikest this man, thou dost run to save thy son! ... Who,
then, will dare to condemn thee?

   Christ came to oppose the right of duty to the duty of right.

   'Right,' with the Jews, was the doctrine of the Pharisees.  And,
indeed, they seemed to have acquired the privilege of dogmatizing;
were they not the legitimate heirs of the synagogue?

   They had the right to condemn the Saviour, and the Saviour knew
that His duty was to resist them. {35}

   Christ is the soul of protest.

   But the protest of what?  Of the flesh against the intelligence? 

   Of right against duty?  No!

   Of the physical against the moral?  No!  No!

   Of imagination against universal reason?  Of folly against wisdom? 
No, a thousand times No, and once more No!

   Christ is the reality, duty, which protests eternally against the
ideality, right.

   He is the emancipation of the spirit which breaks the slavery of
the flesh.

   He is devotion in revolt against egoism.

   He is the sublime modesty which replies to pride: "I will not obey

   Christ is unmated; Christ is solitary; Christ is sad: Why?

   Because woman has prostituted herself.

   Because society is guilty of theft.

   Because selfish joy is impious.

   Christ is judged, condemned, and executed; and men adore Him!

   This happened in a world perhaps as serious as our own.

   Judges of the world in which we live, pay attention, and think of
Him who will judge your judgments!

   But, before dying, the Saviour bequeathed to His children the
immortal sign of salvation, Communion.

   Communion!  Common union! the final word of the Saviour of the

   "The Bread and the Wine shared among all," said He, "this is my
flesh and my blood." {36}

   He gave His flesh to the executioners, His blood to the earth which
drank it.  Why?

   In order that all may partake of the bread of intelligence, and of
the wine of love.

   O sign of the union of men!  O Round Table of universal chivalry! 
O banquet of fraternity and equality!  When will you be better

   Martyrs of humanity, all ye who have given your life in order that
all should have the bread which nourishes and the wine which
fortifies, do ye not also say, placing your hands on the signs of the
universal communion: "This is our flesh and our blood"?

   And you, men of the whole world, you whom the Master calls His
brothers; oh, do you not feel that the universal bread, the fraternal
bread, the bread of the communion, is God?

   Retailers of the Crucified One!

   All you who are not ready to give your blood, your flesh and your
life to humanity, you are not worthy of the Communion of the Son of
God!  Do not let His blood flow upon you, for it would brand your

   Do not approach your lips to the heart of God, He would feel your

   Do not drink the blood of the Christ, it will burn your entrails;
it is quite sufficient that it should have flowed uselessly for you!


                             THE NUMBER EIGHT

   THE Ogdoad is the number of reaction and of equilibrating justice. 

   Every action produces a reaction.

   This is the universal law of the world.

   Christianity must needs produce anti-Christianity.

   Antichrist is the shadow, the foil, the proof of Christ.

   Antichrist already produced itself in the Church in the time of the
Apostles: St. Paul said: --- "For the mystery of iniquity doth already
work; only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the
way. And then shall that Wicked One be revealed. ..."<<2 Thess. ii.
7,8.  This passage is presumably that referred to by the author.  Cf.
1 John iv. 3, and ii, 18. --- TRANS.>>

   The Protestants said: "Antichrist is the Pope."

   The Pope replied: "Every heretic is an Antichrist."

   The Antichrist is no more the Pope than Luther; the Antichrist is
the spirit opposed to that of Christ.

   It is the usurpation of right for the sake of right; it is the
pride of domination and the despotism of thought.

   It is the selfishness, self-styled religious, of Protestants, as
well as the credulous and imperious ignorance of bad Catholics.

   The Antichrist is what divides men instead of uniting them; it is a
spirit of dispute, the obstinacy of the theologians and sectarians,
the impious desire of appropriating the truth to oneself, and
excluding others from it, or of forcing the whole world to submit to
the narrow yoke of our judgments.

  The Antichrist is the priest who curses instead of blessing, who
drives away instead of attracting, who scandalizes instead of
edifying, who damns instead of saving.

   It is the hateful fanaticism which discourages good-will.

   It is the worship of death, sadness, and ugliness. {38}

   "What career shall we choose for our son?" have said many stupid
parents; "he is mentally and bodily weak, and he is without a spark of
courage: --- we will make a priest of him, so that he may 'live by the
altar.'"  They have not understood that the altar is not a manger for
slothful animals.

   Look at the unworthy priests, contemplate these pretended servants
of the altar!  What do they say to your heart, these obese or
cadaverous men with the lack-lustre eyes, and pinched or gaping

   Hear them talk: what does it teach you, their disagreeable and
monotonous noise?

   They pray as they sleep, and they sacrifice as they eat.

   They are machines full of bread, meat and wine, and of senseless

   And when they plume themselves, like the oyster in the sun, on
being without thought and without love, one says that they have peace
of soul!

   They have the peace of the brute.  For man, that of the tomb is
better: these are the priests of folly and ignorance, these are the
ministers of Antichrist.

   The true priest of Christ is a man who lives, suffers, loves and
fights for justice.  He does not dispute, he does not reprove; he
sends out pardon, intelligence and love.

   The true Christian is a stranger to the sectarian spirit; he is all
things to all men, and looks on all men as the children of a common
father, who means to save them all.  The whole cult has for him only a
sense of sweetness and of {39} love: he leaves to God the secrets of
justice, and understands only charity.

   He looks on the wicked as invalids whom one must pity and cure; the
world, with its errors and vices, is to him God's hospital, and he
wishes to serve in it.

   He does not think that he is better than any one else; he says
only, "So long as I am in good health, let me serve others; and when I
must fall and die, perhaps others will take my place and serve."


                              THE NUMBER NINE

   THIS is the hermit of the Tarot; the number which refers to
initiates and to prophets.

   The prophets are solitaries, for it is their fate that none should
ever hear them.

   They see differently from others; they forefeel misfortunes.  So,
people imprison them and kill them, or mock them, repulse them as if
they were lepers, and leave them to die of hunger.

   Then, when the predictions come true, they say, "It is these people
who have brought us misfortune."

   Now, as is always the case on the eve of great disasters,<> our streets are full of prophets.

   I have met some of them in the prisons, I have seen others who were
dying forgotten in garrets.

   The whole great city has seen one of them whose silent {40}
prophecy was to turn ceaselessly as he walked, covered with rags, in
the palace of luxury and riches.

   I have seen one of them whose face shone like that of Christ: he
had callosities on his hands, and wore the workman's blouse; with clay
he kneaded epics.  He twisted together the sword of right and the
sceptre of duty; and upon this column of gold and steel he placed the
creative sign of love.

   One day, in a great popular assembly, he went down into the road
with a piece of bread in his hand which he broke and distributed,
saying: "Bread of God, do thou make bread for all!"

   I know another of them who cried: "I will no longer adore the god
of the devil!  I will not have a hangman for my God!"  And they
thought that he blasphemed.

   No; but the energy of his faith overflowed in inexact and imprudent

   He said again in the madness of his wounded charity: "The
liabilities of all men are common, and they expiate each other's
faults, as they make merit for each other by their virtues.

   "The penalty of sin is death.

   "Sin itself, moreover, is a penalty, and the greatest of penalties.
 A great crime is nothing but a great misfortune.

   "The worst of men is he who thinks himself better than his follows.

   "Passionate men are excusable, because they are passive; passion
means suffering, and also redemption through sorrow.

   "What we call liberty is nothing but the all-mightiness of divine
compulsion.  The martyrs said: 'It is better to obey God than man'."

   "The least perfect act of love is worth more than the best act of

   "Judge not; speak hardly at all; love and act."

   Another prophet came and said: "Protest against bad doctrines by
good works, but do not separate yourselves.

   "Rebuild all the altars, purify all the temples, and hold
yourselves in readiness for the visit of the Spirit.

   "Let every one pray in his own fashion, and hold communion with his
own; but do not condemn others.

   "A religious practice is never contemptible, for it is the sign of
a great and holy thought.

   "To pray together is to communicate in the same hope, the same
faith,and the same charity.

   "The sign by itself is nothing; it is the faith which sanctifies

   "Religion is the most sacred and the strongest bond of human
association, and to perform an act of religion is to perform an act of

   When men understand at last that one must not dispute about things
about which one is ignorant,

   When they feel that a little charity is worth more than much
influence and domination,

   When the whole world respects what even God respects in the least
of His creatures, the spontaneity of obedience and the liberty of

   Then there will be no more than one religion in the world, the
Christian and universal religion, the true Catholic religion, which
will no longer deny itself by restrictions of place and of persons.

   "Woman," said the Saviour to the woman of Samaria, {42} "Verily I
say unto thee, that the time cometh when men shall no longer worship
God, either in Jerusalem, or on this mountain; for God is a spirit,<> and they that worship Him must worship
Him in spirit and in truth."



   THE key of the Sephiroth.  (Vide "Dogme et rituel de la haute


                             THE NUMBER ELEVEN

   ELEVEN is the number of force; it is that of strife and martyrdom.

   Every man who dies for an idea is a martyr, for in him the
aspirations of the spirit have triumphed over the fears of the animal.

   Every man who falls in war is a martyr, for he dies for others.

   Every man who dies of starvation is a martyr, for he is like a
soldier struck down in the battle of life.

   Those who die in defence of right are as holy in their sacrifice as
the victims of duty, and in the great struggles and revolutions
against power, martyrs fell equally on both sides.

   Right being the root of duty, our duty is to defend our rights.

   What is a crime?  The exaggeration of a right.  Murder {43} and
theft are negations of society; it is the isolated despotism of an
individual who usurps royalty, and makes war at his own risk and

   Crime should doubtless be repressed, and society must defend
itself; but who is so just, so great, so pure, as to pretend that he
has the right to punish?

   Peace then to all who fall in war, even in unlawful war!  For they
have staked their heads and they have lost them; they have paid, and
what more can we ask of them?

   Honour to all those who fight bravely and loyally!  Shame only on
the traitors and cowards!

   Christ died between two thieves, and He took one of them with Him
to heaven.

   The Kingdom of Heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it
by force.

   God bestows His almighty power on love.  He loves to triumph over
hate, but the lukewarm He spueth forth from His mouth.

   Duty is to live, were it but for an instant!

   It is fine to have reigned for a day, even for an hour! though it
were beneath the sword of Damocles, or upon the pyre of Sardanapalus!

   But it is finer to have seen at one's feet all the crowns of the
world, and to have said, "I will be the king of the poor, and my
throne shall be on Calvary."

   There is one man stronger than the man that slays; it is he who
dies to save others.

   There are no isolated crimes and no solitary expiations.

   There are no personal virtues, nor are there any wasted devotions.

   Whoever is not without reproach is the accomplice of all evil; and
whoever is not absolutely perverse, may participate in all good.

   For this reason an agony is always an humanitarian expiation, and
every head that falls upon the scaffold may be honoured and praised as
the head of a martyr.

   For this reason also, the noblest and the holiest of martyrs could
inquire of his own conscience, find himself deserving of the penalty
that he was about to undergo, and say, saluting the sword that was
ready to strike him, "Let justice be done!"

   Pure victims of the Roman Catacombs, Jews and Protestants massacred
by unworthy Christians!

   Priests of l'Abbaye and les Carmes,<> victims of
the Reign of Terror, butchered royalists, revolutionaries sacrificed
in your turn, soldiers of our great armies who have sown the world
with your bones, all you who have suffered the penalty of death,
workers, strivers, darers of every kind, brave children of Prometheus,
who have feared neither the lightning nor the vulture, all honour to
your scattered ashes!  Peace and veneration to your memories!  You are
the heroes of progress, martyrs of humanity!


                             THE NUMBER TWELVE

   TWELVE is the cyclic number; it is that of the universal Creed.

   Here is a translation in alexandrines of the unrestricted magical
and Catholic creed: ---

          I do believe in God, almighty sire of man.

          One God, who did create the universe, his plan.

          I do believe in Him, the Son, the chief of men,

          Word and magnificence of the supreme Amen.

          He is the living thought of Love's eternal might,

          God manifest in flesh, the Action of the Light.

          Desired in every place and every period,

          But not a God that one may separate from God.

          Descended among men to free the earth from fate,

          He in His mother did the woman consecrate.

          He was the man whom heaven's sweet wisdom did adorn;

          To suffer and to die as men do He was born.

          Proscribed by ignorance, accused by envy and strife,

          He died upon the cross that He might give us life.

          All who accept His aid to guide and to sustain

          By His example may to God like Him attain.

          He rose from death to reign throughout the ages' dance;

          He is the sun that melts the clouds of ignorance.

          His precepts, better known and mightier soon to be,

          Shall judge the quick and dead for all eternity.

          I do believe in God's most Holy Spirit, whose fire

          The heart and mind of saints and prophets did inspire.

          He is a Breath of life and of fecundity,

          Proceeding both from God and from humanity.

          I do believe in one most holy brotherhood

          Of just men that revere heaven's ordinance of good.

          I do believe one place, one pontiff, and one right,

          One symbol of one God, in one intent unite.

          I do believe that death by changing us renews,

          And that in man as God life sheds immortal dews.


                            THE NUMBER THIRTEEN

   THIRTEEN is the number of death and of birth; it is that of
property and of inheritance, of society and of family, of war and of
treaties. {46}

   The basis of society is the exchange of right, duty and good faith.

   Right is property, exchange is necessity, good faith is duty.

   He who wants to receive more than he gives, or who wants to receive
without giving, is a thief.

   Property is the right to dispose of a portion of the common wealth;
it is not the right to destroy, nor the right to sequestrate.

   To destroy or sequestrate the common wealth is not to possess; it
is to steal.

   I say common wealth, because the true proprietor of all things is
God, who wishes all things to belong to everybody.  Whatever you may
do, at your death you will carry away nothing of this world's goods. 
Now, that which must be taken away from you one day is not really
yours.  It has only been lent to you.

   As to the usufruct, it is the result of work; but even work is not
an assured guarantee of possession, and war may come with devastation
and fire to displace property.

   Make then good use of those things which perish, O you who will
perish before they do!

   Consider that egoism provokes egoism, and that the immorality of
the rich man will answer for the crimes of the poor.

   What does the poor man wish, if he is honest?  He wishes for work.

   Use your rights, but do your duty: the duty of the rich man is to
spread wealth; wealth which does not circulate is dead; do not hoard

   A sophist<> has said, "Property is robbery,"
and he {47} doubtless wished to speak of property absorbed in itself,
withdrawn from free exchange, turned from common use.

   If such were his thought, he might go further, and say that such a
suppression of public life is indeed assassination.

   It is the crime of monopoly, which public instinct has always
looked upon as treason to the human race.

   The family is a natural society which results from marriage.

   Marriage is the union of two beings joined by love, who promise
each other mutual devotion in the interest of the children who may be

   Married persons who have a child, and who separate, are impious. 
Do they then wish to execute the judgment of Solomon and hew the child

   To vow eternal love is puerile; sexual love is an emotion, divine
doubtless, but accidental, involuntary and transitory; but the promise
of reciprocal devotion is the essence of marriage and the fundamental
principle of the family.

   The sanction and the guarantee of this promise must then be an
absolute confidence.

   Every jealousy is a suspicion, and every suspicion is an outrage.

   The real adultery is the breach of this trust: the woman who
complains of her husband to another man; the man who confides to
another woman the disappointments or the hopes of his heart, --- these
do, indeed, betray conjugal faith.

   The surprises which one's senses spring upon one are only
infidelities on account of the impulses of the heart which abandons
itself more or less to the whispers of pleasure.  Moreover, these are
human faults for which one must blush, {48} and which one ought to
hide: they are indecencies which one must avoid in advance by removing
opportunity, but which one must never seek to surprise: morality
proscribes scandal.

   Every scandal is a turpitude.  One is not indecent because one
possesses organs which modesty does not name, but one is obscene when
one exhibits them.

   Husbands, hide your domestic wounds; do not strip your wives naked
before the laughter of the mob!

   Women, do not advertise the discomforts of the conjugal bed: to do
so is to write yourselves prostitutes in public opinion.

   It needs a lofty degree of courage to keep conjugal faith; it is a
pact of heroism of which only great souls can understand the whole

   Marriages which break are not marriages: they are couplings.

   A woman who abandons her husband, what can she become?  She is no
more a wife, and she is not a widow; what is she then?  She is an
apostate from honour who is forced to be licentious because she is
neither virgin nor free.

   A husband who abandons his wife prostitutes her, and deserves the
infamous name that one applies to the lovers of lost women.

   Marriage is then sacred and indissoluble when it really exists.

   But it cannot really exist, except for beings of a lofty
intelligence and of a noble heart.

   The animals do not marry, and men who live like animals undergo the
fatalities of the brute nature.

   They ceaselessly make unfortunate attempts to act {49} reasonably.
Their promises are attempts at and imitations of promises; their
marriages, attempts at and imitations of marriage; their loves,
attempts at and imitations of love.  They always wish, and never will;
they are always undertaking and never completing.  For such people,
only the repressive side of law applies.

   Such beings may have a litter, but they never have a family:
marriage and family are the rights of the perfect man, the emancipated
man, the man who is intelligent and free.

   Ask also the annals of the Courts, and read the history of

   Raise the black veil from off all those chopped heads, and ask them
what they thought of marriage and of the family, what milk they
sucked, what caresses ennobled them. ... Then shudder, all you who do
not give to your children the bread of intelligence and of love, all
you who do not sanction paternal authority by the virtue of a good

   Those wretches were orphans in spirit and in heart, and they have
avenged their birth.

   We live in a century when more than ever the family is
misunderstood in all that it possesses which partakes of the august
and the sacred: material interest is killing intelligence and love;
the lessons of experience are despised, the things of God are hawked
about the street.  The flesh insults the spirit, fraud laughs in the
face of loyalty.  No more idealism, no more justice: human life has
murdered both its father and its mother.

   Courage and patience!  This century will go where great criminals
should go.  Look at it, how sad it is!  Weariness {50} is the black
veil of its face ... the tumbril rolls on, and the shuddering crown
follows it. ..

   Soon one more century will be judged by history, and one will write
upon a mighty tomb of ruins:

   "Here ends the parricide century!  The century which murdered its
God and its Christ!"

   In war, one has the right to kill, in order not to die: but in the
battle of life the most sublime of rights is that of dying in order
not to kill.

   Intelligence and love should resist oppression unto death --- but
never unto murder.

   Brave man, the life of him who has offended you is in your hands;
for he is master of the life of others who cares not for his own...
Crush him beneath your greatness: pardon him!

   "But is it forbidden to kill the tiger which threatens us?"

   "If it is a tiger with a human face, it is finer to let him devour
us, --- yet, for all that, morality has here nothing to say."

   "But if the tiger threatens my children?"

   "Let Nature herself reply to you!"

   Harmodius and Aristogiton had festivals and statues in Ancient
Greece. The Bible has consecrated the names of Judith and Ehud, and
one of the most sublime figures of the Holy Book is that of Samson,
blind and chained, pulling down the columns of the temple, as he
cried: "Let me die with the Philistines!"

   And yet, do you think that, if Jesus, before dying, had gone to
Rome to plunge his dagger in the heart of Tiberius, He would have
saved the world, as He did, in forgiving His executioners, and in
dying for even Tiberius? {51}

   Did Brutus save Roman liberty by killing Caesar?  In killing
Caligula, Chaerea only made place for Claudius and Nero.  To protest
against violence by violence, is to justify it, and to force it to
reproduce itself.

   But to triumph over evil by good, over selfishness by
selfabnegation, over ferocity by pardon, that is the secret of
Christianity, and it is that of eternal victory.

   "I have seen the place where the earth still bled from the murder
of "Abel," and on that place there ran a brook of tears.

   Under the guidance of the centuries, myriads of men moved on,
letting fall their tears into the brook.

   And Eternity, crouching mournful, gazed upon the tears which fell;
she counted them one by one, and there were never enough to them to
wash away one stain of blood.

   But between two multitudes and two ages came the Christ, a pale and
radiant figure.

   And in the earth of blood and tears, He planted the vine of
fraternity; and the tears and the blood, sucked up by the roots of the
divine tree, became the delicious sap of the grape, which is destined
to intoxicate with love the children of the future.


                            THE NUMBER FOURTEEN

   FOURTEEN is the number of fusion, of association, and of universal
unity, and it is in the name of what it represents that we shall here
make an appeal to the nations, beginning with the most ancient and the
most holy.

   Children of Israel, why, in the midst of the movement of {52} the
nations, do you rest immobile, guardians of the tombs of your fathers?

   Your fathers are not here, they are risen: for the God of Abraham,
of Isaac, and of Jacob, is not the God of the dead!

   Why do you always impress upon your offspring the bloody sigil of
the knife?

   God no longer wishes to separate you from other men; be our
brethren, and eat with us the consecrated Bread of peace on altars
that blood stains never.

   The law of Moses is accomplished: read your books and understand
that you have been a blind and hard-hearted race, even as all your
prophets said to you.

   You have also been a courageous race, a race that persevered in

   Children of Israel, become the children of God:  Understand and

   God has wiped from your forehead the brand of Cain, and the peoples
seeing you pass will no longer say, "There go the Jews!"  They will
cry, "Room for our brethren!  Room for our elders in the Faith!"

   And we shall go every year to eat the passover with you in the city
of the New Jerusalem.

   And we shall take our rest under your vine and under your fig-tree;
for you will be once more the friend of the traveller, in memory of
Abraham, of Tobias, and of the angels who visited them.

   And in memory of Him who said: "He who receiveth the least of these
My little ones, receiveth Me."

   For then you will no longer refuse an asylum in your {53} house and
in your heart to your brother Joseph, whom you sold to the Gentiles.

   Because he has become powerful in the land of Egypt where you
sought bread in the days of famine.

   And he has remembered his father Jacob, and Benjamin his young
brother, and he pardons you your jealousy, and embraces you with

   Children of true believers, we will sing with you: "There is no God
but God, and Mohammed is His prophet!"

   Say with the children of Israel: "There is no God but God, and
Moses is His prophet!"

   Say with the Christians: "There is no God but God, and Jesus Christ
is His prophet!"

   Mohammed is the shadow of Moses.  Moses is the forerunner of Jesus.

   What is a prophet?  A representative of humanity seeking God.  God
is God, and man is the prophet of God, when he causes us to believe in

   The Old Testament, the Qur'an, and the Gospel are three different
translations of the same book.  As God is one, so also is the law.

   O ideal woman!  O reward of the elect!  Art thou more beautiful
than Mary?

   O Mary, daughter of the East! caste as pure love, great as the
desire of motherhood, come and teach the children of Islam the
mysteries of Paradise, and the secrets of beauty!

   Invite them to the festival of the new alliance!  There, upon three
thrones glittering with precious stones, three prophets will be
seated. {54}

   The tuba tree will make, with its back-curving branches, a dais for
the celestial table.

   The bride will be white as the moon, and scarlet as the smile of

   All nations shall press forward to see her, and they will no longer
fear to pass AL Sirah; for, on that razor-edged bridge, the Saviour
will stretch His cross, and come to stretch His hand to those who
stumble, and to those who have fallen the bride will stretch her
perfumed veil, and draw them to her.

   O ye people, clap your hands, and praise the last triumph of love!
Death alone will remain dead, and hell alone will be consumed!

   O nations of Europe, to whom the East stretches forth its hands,
unite and push back the northern bear!<>  Let the last
war bring the triumph of intelligence and love, let commerce interlace
the arms of the world, and a new civilization, sprung from the armed
Gospel, unite all the flocks of the earth under the crook of the same

   Such will be the conquests of progress, such is the end towards
which the whole movement of the world is pushing us.

   Progress is movement, and movement is life.

   To deny progress is to affirm nothingness, and to deify death.

   Progress is the only reply that reason can give to the objections
which the existence of evil raises. {55}

   All is not well, but all will be well one day.  God begins His
work, and He will finish it.

   Without progress, evil would be immutable like God.

   Progress explains ruins, and consoles the weeping of Jeremiah.

   Nations succeed each other like men; and nothing is stable, because
everything is marching towards perfection.

   The great man who dies bequeathes to his country the fruit of his
works; the great nation which becomes extinguished upon earth
transforms itself into a star to enlighten the obscurities of History.

   What it has written by its actions remains graven in the eternal
book; it has added a page to the Bible of the human race.

   Do not say that civilization is bad; for it resembles the damp heat
which ripens the harvest, it rapidly develops the principles of life
and the principles of death, it kills and it vivifies.

   It is like the angel of the judgment who separates the wicked from
the good.

  Civilization transforms men of good will into angels of light, and
lowers the selfish man beneath the brute; it is the corruption of
bodies and the emancipation of souls.

   The impious world of the giants raised to Heaven the soul of Enoch;
above the Bacchanals of primitive Greece rises the harmonious spirit
of Orpheus.

   Socrates and Pythagoras, Plato and Aristotle, resume, in explaining
them, all the aspirations and all the glories of the ancient world;
the fables of Homer remain truer than history, and nothing remains to
us of the grandeur of Rome {56} but the immortal writings which the
century of Augustus brought forth.

   Thus, perhaps, Rome only shook the world with the convulsions of
war, in order to bring forth Vergil.

   Christianity is the fruit of the meditations of all the sages of
the East, who live again in Jesus Christ.

   Thus the light of the spirits has risen where the sun of the world
rises; Christ conquered the West, and the soft rays of the sun of Asia
have touched the icicles of the North.

   Stirred by this unknown heat, ant-heaps of new men have spread over
a worn-out world; the souls of dead people have shone upon rejuvenated
races, and enlarged in them the spirit of life.

   There is in the world a nation which calls itself frankness and
freedom, for these two words are synonymous with the name of France.

   This nation has always been in some ways more Catholic than the
Pope, and more Protestant than Luther.

   The France of the Crusades, the France of the Troubadours, the
France of songs, the France of Rabelais and of Voltaire, the France of
Bossuet and of Pascal, it is she who is the synthesis of all peoples:
it is she who consecrates the alliance of reason and of faith, of
revolution and of power, of the most tender belief and of the proudest
human dignity.

   And, see how she marches, how she swings herself, how she
struggles, how she grows great!

   Often deceived and wounded, never cast down, enthusiastic over her
triumphs, daring in her adversities, she laughs, she sings, she dies,
and she teaches the world faith in immortality. {57}

   The old guard does not surrender, but neither does it die!  The
proof of it is the enthusiasm of our children, who mean, one day, to
be also soldiers of the old guard!

   Napoleon is no more a man: he is the very genius of France, he is
the second saviour of the world, and he also gave for a sign the cross
to his apostles.

   St. Helena and Golgotha are the beacons of the new civilization;
they are the two piles of an immerse bridge made by the rainbow of the
final deluge, and which throws a bridge between the two worlds.

   And can you believe that a past without aureole and without glory,
might capture and devour so great a future?

   Could you think that the spur of a Tartar might one day tear up the
pact of our glories, the testament of our liberties?

   Say rather that we may again become children, and enter again into
our mother's womb!

   "Go on!  Go on!" said the voice of God to the wandering Jew. 
"Advance! Advance!" the destiny of the world cries out to France.  And
where do we go?  To the unknown, the the abyss perhaps; no matter! 
But to the past, to the cemeteries of oblivion, to the
swaddling-clothes which our childhood itself tore in shreds, towards
the imbecility and ignorance of the earliest ages ... never! never!


                            THE NUMBER FIFTEEN

   FIFTEEN is the number of antagonism, and of catholicity.

   Christianity is at present divided into two churches: the {58}
civilizing church, and the savage church; the progressive church, and
the stationary church.

   One is active, the other is passive: one has mastered the nations
and governs them always, since kings fear it; the other has submitted
to every despotism, and can be nothing but an instrument of slavery.

   The active church realizes God for men, and alone believes in the
divinity of the human Word, as an interpreter of that of God.

   What after all is the infallibility of the Pope, but the autocracy
of intelligence, confirmed by the universal vote of faith?

   In this case, one might say, the Pope ought to be the first genius
of his century.  Why?  It is more proper, in reality, that he should
be an average man.  His supremacy is only more divine for that,
because it is in a way more human.

   Do not events speak louder than rancours and irreligious
ignorances?  Do not you see Catholic France sustaining with one hand
the tottering papacy, and with the other holding the sword to fight at
the head of the army of progress?

   Catholics, Jews, Turks, Protestants, already fight under the same
banner; the crescent has rallied to the Latin cross, and altogether we
struggle against the invasion of the barbarians, and their brutalizing

   It is for ever an accomplished fact.  In admitting new dogmas, the
chair of St. Peter has solemnly proclaimed itself progressive.

   The fatherland of Catholic Christianity is that of the sciences and
of the fine arts; and the eternal Word of the Gospel, living and
incarnate in a visible authority, is still the light of the world.

   Silence, then, to the Pharisees of the new synagogue!  Silence to
the hateful traditions of the Schools, to the arrogance of
Presbyterianism, to the absurdity of Jansenism, and to all those
shameful and superstitious interpretations of the eternal dogma, so
justly stigmatized by the pitiless genius of Voltaire!

   Voltaire and Napoleon died Catholics.<<"I do not say that Voltaire
died a good Catholic, but he died a Catholic."  --- E. L.  Christian
authors unanimously hold that, like all 'heretics,' he repented on his
death-bed, and died blaspheming.  What on earth does it matter?  Life,
not death, reveals the soul. --- TRANS.>>  And do you know what the
Catholicism of the future must be?

   It will be the dogma of the Gospel, tried like gold by the critical
acid of Voltaire, and realized, in the kingdom of the world, by the
genius of the Christian Napoleon.

   Those who will not march will be dragged or trampled by events.

   Immense calamities may again hang over the world.  The armies of
the Apocalypse may, perhaps, one day, unchain the four scourges.  The
sanctuary will be cleansed.  Rigid and holy poverty will send forth
its apostles to uphold what staggers, lift up again what is broken,
and anoint all wounds with sacred oils.

   Those two blood-hungered monsters, despotism and anarchy, will tear
themselves to pieces, and annihilate each other, after having mutually
sustained each other for a little while, by the embrace of their
struggle itself.

   And the government of the future will be that whose model is shown
to us in nature, by the family, and in the religious world by the
pastoral hierarchy.  The elect shall reign with Jesus Christ during a
thousand years, say the {60} apostolic traditions: that is to say,
that during a series of centuries, the intelligence and love of chosen
men, devoted to the burden of power, will administer the interests and
the wealth of the universal family.

   At that day, according to the promise of the Gospel, there will be
no more than one flock and one shepherd.


                            THE NUMBER SIXTEEN

   SIXTEEN is the number of the temple.

   Let us say what the temple of the future will be!

   When the spirit of intelligence and love shall have revealed
itself, the whole trinity will manifest itself in its truth and in its

   Humanity, become a queen, and, as it were, risen from the dead,
will have the grace of childhood in its poesy, the vigour of youth in
its reason, and the wisdom of ripe age in its works.

   All those forms, which the divine thought has successively clothed,
will be born again, immortal and perfect.

   All those features which the art of successive nations has sketched
will unite themselves, and form the complete image of God.

   Jerusalem will rebuild the Temple of Jehovah on the model
prophesied by Ezekiel; and the Christ, new and eternal Solomon, will
chant, beneath roofs of cedar and of cypress, the Epithalamium of his
marriage with holy liberty, the holy bride of the Song of Songs.

   But Jehovah will have laid aside his thunderbolts, to bless {61}
with both hands the bridegroom and the bride; he will appear smiling
between them, and take pleasure in being called father.

   However, the poetry of the East, in its magical souvenirs, will
call him still Brahma, and Jupiter.  India will teach our enchanted
climates the marvellous fables of Vishnu, and we shall place upon the
still bleeding forehead of our well-beloved Christ the triple crown of
pearls of the mystical Trimurti.  From that time, Venus, purified
under the veil of Mary, will no more weep for her Adonis.

   The bridegroom is risen to die no more, and the infernal boar has
found death in its momentary victory.

   Lift yourselves up again, O Temples of Delphi and of Ephesus!  The
God of Light and of Art is become the God of the world, and the Word
of God is indeed willing to be called Apollo!  Diana will no more
reign widowed in the lonely fields of night; her silvern crescent is
now beneath the feet of the bride.

   But Diana is not conquered by Venus; her Endymion has wakened, and
virginity is about to take pride in motherhood!

   Quit the tomb, O Phidias, and rejoice in the destruction of thy
first Jupiter: it is now that thou wilt conceive a God!

   O Rome, let thy temples rise again, side by side with thy
basilicas: be once more the Queen of the World, and the Pantheon of
the nations; let Vergil be crowned on the Capitol by the hand of St.
Peter; and let Olympus and Carmel unite their divinities beneath the
brush of Raphael!

   Transfigure yourselves, ancient cathedrals of our fathers; dart
forth into the clouds your chiselled and living arrows, and {62} let
stone record in animated figures the dark legends of the North,
brightened by the marvellous gilded apologues of the Qur'an!

   Let the East adore Jesus Christ in its mosques, and on the minarets
of a new Santa Sophia let the cross rise in the midst of the

   Let Mohammed set woman free to give to the true believer the houris
which he has so long dreamt of, and let the martyrs of the Saviour
teach chaste caresses to the beautiful angels of Mohammed!

   The whole earth, reclothed with the rich adornments which all the
arts have embroidered for her, will no longer be anything but a
magnificent temple, of which man shall be the eternal priest.

   All that was true, all that was beautiful, all that was sweet in
the past centuries, will live once more glorified in this
transfiguration of the world.

   And the beautiful form will remain inseparable from the true idea,
as the body will one day be inseparable from the soul, when the soul,
come to its own power, will have made itself a body in its own image.

   That will be the kingdom of Heaven upon Earth, and the body will be
the temple of the soul, as the regenerated universe will be the body
of God.

   And bodies and souls, and form and thought, and the whole universe,
will be the light, the word, and the permanent and visible revelation
of God. Amen.  So be it. {63}


                           THE NUMBER SEVENTEEN

   SEVENTEEN is the number of the star; it is that of intelligence and

   Warrior and bold intelligence, accomplice of divine Prometheus,
eldest daughter of Lucifer, hail unto thee in thine audacity!  Thou
didst wish to know, and in order to possess, thou didst brave all the
thunders, and affronted every abyss!

   Intelligence, O Thou, whom we poor sinners have loved to madness,
to scandal, to reprobation!  Divine right of man, essence and soul of
liberty, hail unto thee!  For they have pursued thee, in trampling
beneath their feet for thee the dearest dreams of their imagination,
the best beloved phantoms of their heart!

   For thee, they have been repulsed and proscribed, for thee they
have suffered prison, nakedness, hunger, thirst, the desertion of
those whom they loved, and the dark temptations of despair!  Thou wast
their right, and they have conquered thee!  Now they can weep and
believe, now they can submit themselves and pray!

   Repentant Cain would have been greater than Abel: it is lawful
pride satisfied which has the right to humiliate itself!

   I believe because I know why and how one must believe; I believe
because I love, and fear no more.

   Love!  Love!  Sublime redeemer and sublime restorer; thou who
makest so much happiness, with so many tortures, thou who didst
sacrifice blood and tears, thou who art virtue {64} itself, and the
reward of virtue; force of resignation, belief of obedience, joy of
sorrow, life of death, hail! Salutation and glory to thee!  If
intelligence is a lamp, thou art its flame; if it is right, thou art
duty; if it is nobility, thou art happiness.  Love, full of pride and
modesty in thy mysteries, divine love, hidden love, love insensate and
sublime, Titan who takest Heaven in both hands, and forcest it to
earth, final and ineffable secret of Christian widowhood, love
eternal, love infinite, ideal which would suffice to create worlds;
love! love! blessing and glory to thee!  Glory to the intelligences
which veil themselves that they may not offend weak eyes!  Glory to
right which transforms itself wholly into duty, and which becomes
devotion!  To the widowed souls who love, and burn up without being
loved!  To those who suffer, and make none other suffer, to those who
forgive the ungrateful, to those who love their enemies!  Oh, happy
evermore, happy beyond all, are those who embrace poverty, who have
drained themselves to the dregs, to give!  Happy are the souls who for
ever make thy peace!  Happy the pure and the simple hearts that never
think themselves better than others! Humanity, my mother, humanity
daughter and mother of God, humanity conceived without sin, universal
Church, Mary!  Happy is he who has dared all to know thee and to
understand thee, and who is ready to suffer all once more, in order to
serve thee and to love thee!


                            THE NUMBER EIGHTEEN

   THIS number is that of religious dogma, which is all poetry and all
mystery. {65}

   The Gospel says that at the death of the Saviour the veil of the
Temple was rent, because that death manifested the triumph of
devotion, the miracle of charity, the power of God in man, divine
humanity, and human divinity, the highest and most sublime of Arcana,
the last word of all initiations.

   But the Saviour knew that at first men would not understand him,
and he said: "You will not be able to bear at present the full light
of my doctrine; but, when the Spirit of Truth shall manifest himself,
he will teach you all truth, and he will cause you to understand the
sense of what I have said unto you."

   Now the Spirit of Truth is the spirit of science and intelligence,
the spirit of force and of counsel.

   It is that spirit which solemnly manifested itself in the Roman
Church, when it declared in the four articles of its decree of the
12th December, 1845:

   1 Degree. --- That if faith is superior to reason, reason ought to
endorse the inspirations of faith;

   2 Degree. --- That faith and science have each their separate
domain, and that the one should not usurp the functions of the other;

   3 Degree. --- That it is proper for faith and grace, not to weaken,
but on the contrary to strengthen and develop reason;

   4 Degree. --- That the concourse of reason, which examines, not the
decisions of faith, but the natural and rational bases of the
authority which decides them, far from injuring faith, can only be
useful to it; in other words, that a faith, perfectly reasonable in
its principles, should not fear, but should, on the contrary, desire
the sincere examination of reason.

   Such a decree is the accomplishment of a complete religious {66}
revolution, it is the inauguration of the reign of the Holy Ghost upon
the earth.


                            THE NUMBER NINETEEN

   IT is the number of light.

   It is the existence of God proved by the very idea of God.

   Either one must say that Being is the universal tomb where, by an
automatic movement, stirs a form for ever dead and corpse-like, or one
must admit the absolute principle of intelligence and of life.

   Is the universal light dead or alive?  Is it vowed fatally to the
work of destruction, or providentially directed to an immortal birth?

   If there be no God, intelligence is only a deception, for it fails
to be the absolute, and its ideal is a lie.

   Without God, being is a nothingness affirming itself, life a death
in disguise, and light a night for ever deceived by the mirage of

   The first and most essential act of faith is then this.

   Being exists; and the Being of beings, the Truth of being, is God.

   Being is alive with intelligence, and the living intelligence of
absolute being is God.

   Light is real and life-giving; now, the reality and life of all
light is God.

   The word of universal reason is an affirmation and not a negation.

   How blind are they who do not see that physical light is nothing
but the instrument of thought! {67}

   Thought alone, then, reveals light, and creates it in using it for
its own purposes.

   The affirmation of atheism is the dogma of eternal night: the
affirmation of God is the dogma of light!

   We stop here at the number Nineteen, although the sacred alphabet
has twenty-two letters; but the first nineteen are the keys of occult
theology. The others are the keys of Nature; we shall return to them
in the third part of this work.


   Let us resume what we have said concerning God, by quoting a fine
invocation borrowed from the Jewish liturgy.  It is a page from the
qabalistic poem Kether-Malkuth, by Rabbi Solomon, son of Gabirol:

   "Thou art one, the beginning of all numbers, and the foundation of
all buildings; thou art one, and in the secret of thy unity the most
wise of men are lost, because they know it not.  Thou art one, and thy
unity neither wanes nor waxes, neither suffers any change.   Thou art
one, and yet not the one of the mathematician, for thy unity admits
neither multiplication, nor change, nor form.  Thou art one, and not
one of mine imaginations can fix a limit for thee, or give a
definition of thee; therefore will I take heed to my ways, lest I
offend with my tongue.  Thou art one indeed, whose excellence is so
lofty, that it may in no wise fall, by no means like that one which
may cease to be.

   "Thou art the existing one; nevertheless, the understanding and the
sight of mortals cannot attain thine existence, nor place in thee the
where, the how, the why.  Thou art the {68} existing one, but in
thyself, since no other can exist beside thee.  Thou art the existing
one, before time, and beyond space.  Thou art indeed the existing one,
and thine existence is so hidden, and so deep, that none can discover
it, or penetrate its secret.

   "Thou art the living one, but not in fixed and known time; thou art
the living one, but not by spirit or by soul; for thou art the Soul of
all souls.  Thou art the living one; but not living with the life of
mortals, that is, like a breath, and whose end is to give food to
worms.  Thou art the living one, and he that can attain thy mysteries
will enjoy eternal delight and live for ever.

   "Thou art great; before thy greatness all other greatness bows, and
all that is most excellent becomes imperfect.  Thou art great above
all imagination, and thou art exalted above all the hierarchies of
Heaven.  Thou art great above all greatness, and thou art exalted
above all praise.  Thou art strong, and not one among thy creatures
can do the works that thou dost, nor can his force be compared with
thine.  Thou art strong, and it is to thee that belongs that strength
invincible which changes not and decays never.  Thou art strong; by
thy loving-kindness thou dost forgive in the moment of thy most
burning wrath, and thou showest thyself long-suffering to sinners. 
Thou art strong, and thy mercies, existing from all time, are upon all
thy creatures.  Thou art the eternal light, that pure souls shall see,
and that the cloud of sins will hide from the eyes of sinners.  Thou
art the light which is hidden in this world, and visible in the other,
where the glory of the Lord is shown forth.  Thou art Sovereign, and
the eyes of understanding which desire to see thee are all {69}
amazed, for they can attain but part of it, never the whole.  Thou art
the God of gods, and all thy creatures bear witness to it; and in
honour of this great name they owe thee all their worship.  Thou art
God, and all created beings are thy servants and thy worshippers: thy
glory is not tarnished, although men worship other gods, because their
intention is to address themselves to thee; they are like blind men,
who wish to follow the straight road, but stray; one falls into a
well, the other into a ditch; all think that they are come to their
desire, yet they have wearied themselves in vain.  But thy servants
are like men of clear sight travelling upon the highroad; never do
they stray from it, either to the right hand or the left, until they
are entered into the court of the king's palace.  Thou art God, who by
thy godhead sustainest all beings, and by thy unity dost being home
all creatures.  Thou art God, and there is no difference between thy
deity, thy unity, thy eternity, and thy existence; for all is one and
the same mystery; although names vary, all returns to the same truth. 
Thou art the knower, and that intelligence which is the source of life
emanates from thyself; and beside thy knowledge all the wisest men are
fools.  Thou art the knower, and the ancient of the ancient ones, and
knowledge has ever fed from thee.  Thou art the knower, and thou hast
learned thy knowledge from none, nor hast acquired it but from
thyself.  Thou art the knower, and like a workman and an architect
thou hast taken from thy knowledge a divine will, at an appointed
time, to draw being from nothing; so that the light which falls from
the eyes is drawn from its own centre without any instrument or tool. 
This divine will has hollowed, designed, purified and moulded; it has
ordered {70} Nothingness to open itself, Being to shut up, and the
world to spread itself.  It has spanned the heavens, and assembled
with its power the tabernacle of the spheres, with the cords of its
might it has bound the curtains of the creatures of the universe, and
touching with its strength the edge of the curtain of creation, has
joined that which is above to that which was below." --- ("Prayers of

   We have given to these bold qabalistic speculations the only form
which suits them, that is, poesy, or the inspiration of the heart.

   Believing souls will have no need of the rational hypotheses
contained in this new explanation of the figures of the Bible; but
those sincere hearts afflicted by doubt, which are tortured by
eighteenth-century criticism, will understand in reading it that even
reason without faith can find in the Holy Book something besides
stumbling-blocks; if the veils with which the divine text is covered
throw a great shadow, this shadow is so marvellously designed by the
interplay of light that it becomes the sole intelligible image of the
divine ideal.

   Ideal, incomprehensible as infinity, and indispensable as the very
essence of mystery!


                                ARTICLE II

                      SOLUTION OF THE SECOND PROBLEM

                               TRUE RELIGION

   RELIGION exists in humanity, like love.

   Like it, it is unique.

   Like it, it either exists, or does not exist, in such and such a
soul; but, whether one accepts it or denies it, it is in humanity; it
is, then, in life, it is in nature itself; it is an incontestable fact
of science, and even of reason.

   The true religion is that which has always existed, which exists
to-day, and will exist for ever.

   Some one may say that religion is this or that; religion is what it
is. This is the true religion, and the false religions are
superstitions imitated from her, borrowed from her, lying shadows of

   One may say of religion what one says of true art.  Savage attempts
at painting or sculpture are the attempts of ignorance to arrive at
the truth. Art proves itself by itself, is radiant with its own
splendour, is unique and eternal like beauty.

   The true religion is beautiful, and it is by that divine character
that it imposes itself on the respect of science, and obtains the
assent of reason.

   Science dare not affirm or deny those dogmatic hypotheses which are
truths for faith; but it must recognize by unmistakable {72}
characters the one true religion, that is to say, that which alone
merits the name of religion in that it unites all the characters which
agree with that great and universal aspiration of the human soul.

   One only thing, which is to all most evidently divine, is
manifested in the world.

   It is charity.

   The work of true religion should be to produce, to preserve, and to
spread abroad the spirit of charity.

   To arrive at this end she must herself possess all the
characteristics of charity, in such a manner that one could define her
satisfactorily, in naming her, "Organic Charity."

   Now, what are the characteristics of charity?

   It is St. Paul who will tell us.

   Charity is patient.

   Patient like God, because it is eternal as He is.  It suffers
persecutions, and never persecutes others.

   It is kindly and loving, calling to itself the little, and not
repulsing the great.

   It is without jealousy.  Of whom, and of what, should it be
jealous? Has it not that better part which shall not be taken away
from it?

   It is neither quarrelsome nor intriguing.

   It is without pride, without ambition, without selfishness, without

   It never thinks evil, and never triumphs by injustice; for all its
joy is comprehended in truth.

   It endures everything, without ever tolerating evil.

   It believes all; its faith is simple, submissive, hierarchical, and
universal. {73}

   It sustains all, and never imposes burdens which it is not itself
the first to carry.

{Illustration on page 74 described:


The figure is contained within a rectangle of width a bit less than
half height.   The figure itself is taken from Revelations Chapter 10
and is roughly divisible into four parts.  The top contains a human
head and upraised left hand in a shaded semi-circle under an arch of
three curved lines.  The hand is palmer, thumb out, first and middle
fingers upright and two remaining fingers to palm.  "MICROPROSOPUS" is
written horizontally above the arch, "Gnosis" to the left and
"Atziluth" "Jezirah" "BRIAH" "Sulphur" to the right in rows. 
Following the arch outside to the left is "EIS THS".  Following the
arch outside to the right is "GR:alpha-iota-omega-nu-alpha-sigma
Alpha-mu-eta-nu"  --- Greek is difficult to tell from Latin letters
here, and the first part looks very much like "aiwvas", almost
Crowley's "Aiwass" and very possibly a subconscious inspiration for
it.  There is a suggestion of a nimbus about the head.  The section
next down is contained largely within a cloud.  To the left, outside
"Psyche".  To the right outside in rows "Aziah" "JEZIRAH" "Mercury". 
In the center is a book held open by a right hand flat against the
left page and open, palm to book, fingers extending to base of right
page.  At the top of this portion, just below the chin of the upper
section head is the word " GR:eta delta-omicron-xi-alpha" (the glory).
 Immediately below this and above the spine of the book is an
unrecognizable character a little like  GR:mu or Mem from the Alphabet
of the Magi, although this is the normal place for "Alpha". 
Immediately below the book is " GR:eta
delta-upsilon-nu-alpha-mu-iota-sigma" (the power).  There is a strange
character below this, at the bottom of this section and like that
noted above --- even harder to recognize, but this is the usual
position for "Omega".   The third section from the top and second from
the bottom has two pillars issuing from the cloud.  These have fluted
capitols and ringed bases extending to form trapezoidal forms.  The
pillar to the left is black and marked at center with "B", while that
to the right is white with "J".  To the left is "Hyle".  To the right
in rows "Briah" "AZIAH" and a small rectangle.  There is a crescent
moon between the bases of the drums, horns angled right and slightly
upward.  The lowest portion shows feet issuing from the bases of the
pillars and cocked outward on a mass of rock to the left and a sea to
the right.  " GR:eta beta-alpha-sigma-iota-lambda-epsilon-iota-alpha"
(the kingdom) is written on the base of this rock.   The rectangular
frame is broken at the bottom to admit crude Hebrew letters, evidently
Yod-Shin-Heh-Vau-Heh or something similar with the doubt being on the
HB:Heh 's looking like HB:Chet 's.  Below this is what appears to be 
GR:Omicron-tau-iota omicron-delta epsilon-delta-iota-nu, but the poor
penmanship makes certain identification impossible.  The entire figure
gives the impression of a man with head in heaven and feet on earth.}

   Religion is patient --- the religion of great thinkers and of

   It is benevolent like Christ and the apostles, like Vincent de
Paul, and like Fenelon.

   It envies not either the dignities or the goods of the earth. {74} 
It is the religion of the fathers of the desert, of St. Francis, and
of St. Bruno, of the Sisters of Charity, and of the Brothers of
Saint-Jean-de- Dieu.

   It is neither quarrelsome nor intriguing.  It prays, does good, and

   It is humble, it is sweet-tempered, it inspires only devotion and
sacrifice.  It has, in short, all the characteristics of Charity
because it is Charity itself.

   Men, on the contrary, are impatient, persecutors, jealous, cruel,
ambitious, unjust, and they show themselves as such, even in the name
of that religion which they have succeeded in calumniating, but which
they will never cause to life.  Men pass away, but truth is eternal.

   Daughter of Charity, and creator of Charity in her own turn, true
religion is essentially that which realizes; she believes in the
miracles of faith, because she herself accomplishes them every day
when she practises charity.  Now, a religion which practises charity
may flatter herself that she realizes all the dreams of divine love. 
Moreover, the faith of the hierarchical church transforms mysticism
into realism by the efficacy of her sacraments.  No more signs, no
more figures whose strength is not in grace, and which do not really
give what they promise!  Faith animates all, makes all in some sort
visible and palpable; even the parables of Jesus Christ take a body
and a soul.  They show, at Jerusalem, the house of the wicked rich
man!!  The thin symbolisms of the primitive religions overturned by
science, and deprived of the life of faith, resemble those whitened
bones which covered the field that Ezekiel saw in his vision.  The
Spirit of the Saviour, the spirit of faith, the spirit of {75}
charity, has breathed upon this dust; and all that which was dead has
taken life again so really that one recognizes no more yesterday's
corpses in these living creatures of to-day.  And why should one
recognize them, since the world is renewed, since St. Paul burned at
Ephesus the books of the hierophants?  Was then St. Paul a barbarian,
and was he committing a crime against science?  No, but he burned the
winding-sheets of the resuscitated that they might forget death.  Why,
then, do we to-day recall the qabalistic origins of dogma?  Why do we
join again the figures of the Bible to the allegories of Hermes?  Is
it to condemn St. Paul, is it to bring doubt to believers?  No,
indeed, for believers have no need of our book; they will not read it,
and they will not wish to understand it.  But we wish to show to the
innumerable crowd of those who doubt, that faith is attached to the
reason of all the centuries, to the science of all the sages.  We wish
to force human liberty to respect divine authority, reason to
recognize the bases of faith, so that faith and authority, in their
turn, may never again proscribe liberty and reason.


                                ARTICLE III

                       SOLUTION OF THE THIRD PROBLEM

                      THE RATIONALE OF THE MYSTERIES

   FAITH being the aspiration to the unknown, the object of faith is
absolutely and necessarily this one thing --- Mystery.

   In order to formulate its aspirations, faith is forced to borrow
aspirations and images from the known.

   But she specializes the employment of these forms, by placing them
together in a manner which, in the known order of things, is
impossible. Such is the profound reason of the apparent absurdity of

   Let us give an example:

   If faith said that God was impersonal, one might conclude that God
is only a word, or, at most, a thing.

   If it is said that God was a person, one would represent to oneself
the intelligent infinite, under the necessarily bounded form of an

   It says, "God is one in three persons," in order to express that
one conceives in God both unity and multiplicity.

   The formula of a mystery excludes necessarily the very intelligence
of that formula, so far as it is borrowed from the world of known
things; for, if one understood it, it would express the known and not
the unknown.

   It would then belong to science, and no longer to religion, that is
to say, to faith. {77}

   The object of faith is a mathematical problem, whose "x" escapes
the procedures of our algebra.

   Absolute mathematics prove only the necessity, and, in consequence,
the existence of this unknown which we represent by the untranslatable

   Now science progresses in vain; its progress is indefinite, but
always relatively finite; it will never find in the language of the
finite the complete expression of the infinite.  Mystery is therefore

   To bring into the logic of the known the terms of a profession of
faith is to withdraw them from faith, which has for positive bases
anti-logic, that is to say, the impossibility of logically explaining
the unknown.

   For the Jew, God is separate from humanity; He does not live in His
creatures, He is infinite egoism.

   For the Mussulman, God is a word before which one prostrates
oneself, on the authority of Mohammed.

   For the Christian, God has revealed himself in humanity, proves
Himself by charity, and reigns by virtue of the order which
constitutes the hierarchy.

   The hierarchy is the guardian of dogma, for whose letter and spirit
she alike demands respect.  The sectarians who, in the name of their
reason or, rather, of their individual unreason, have laid hands on
dogma, have, in the very act, lost the spirit of charity; they have
excommunicated themselves.

   The Catholic, that is to say the universal, dogma merits that
magnificent name by harmonizing in one all the religious aspirations
of the world; with Moses and Mohammed, it affirms the unity of God;
with Zoroaster, Hermes and Plato, it recognizes in Him the infinite
trinity of its own regeneration; {78} it reconciles the living numbers
of Pythagoras with the monadic Word of St. John;<> so much, science
and reason will agree.  It is then in the eyes of reason and of
science themselves the most perfect, that is to say the most complete,
dogma which has ever been produced in the world.  Let science and
reason grant us so much; we shall ask nothing more of them.

   "God exists; there is only one God, and He punishes those who do
evil," said Moses.

   "God is everywhere; He is in us, and the good that we do to me we
do it to God," said Jesus.

   "Fear" is the conclusion of the dogma of Moses.

   "Love" is the conclusion of the dogma of Jesus.

   The typical ideal of the life of God in humanity is incarnation.

   Incarnation necessitates redemption, and operates it in the name of
the reversibility of solidarity,<> or, in other words, of universal communion, the dogmatic
principle of the spirit of charity.

   To substitute human arbitrament for the legitimate despotism of the
law, to put, in other words, tyranny in the place of authority, is the
work of all Protestantism and of all democracies.  What men call
liberty is the sanction of illegitimate authority, or, rather, the
fiction of power not sanctioned by authority. {79}

   John Calvin protested against the stakes of Rome, in order to give
himself the right to burn Michael Servetus.  Every people that
liberates itself from a Charles I, or a Louis XVI, must undergo a
Robespierre or a Cromwell and there is a more or less absurd anti-pope
being all protestations against the legitimate papacy.

   The divinity of Jesus Christ only exists in the Catholic Church, to
which He transmits hierarchically His life and His divine powers. 
This divinity is sacerdotal and royal by virtue of communion; but
outside of that communion, every affirmation of the divinity of Jesus
Christ is idolatrous, because Jesus Christ could not be an isolated

   The number of Protestants is of no importance to Catholic truth.

   If all men were blind, would that be a reason for denying the
existence of the sun?

   Reason, in protesting against dogma, proves sufficiently that she
has not invented it; but she is forced to admire the morality which
results from that dogma.  Now, if morality is a light, it follows that
dogma must be a sun; light does not come from shadows.

   Between the two abysses of polytheism, and an absurd and ignorant
theism, there is only one possible medium: the mystery of the most
Holy Trinity.

   Between speculative theism, and anthropomorphiosm, there is only
one possible medium: the mystery of incarnation.

   Between immoral fatality, and Draconic responsibility, which would
conclude the damnation of all beings, there is only one possible mean:
the mystery of redemption.

   The trinity is faith. {80}

   The incarnation is hope.

   The redemption is charity.

   The trinity is the hierarchy.

   Incarnation is the divine authority of the Church.

   Redemption is the unique, infallible, unfailing and Catholic

   The Catholic Church alone possesses an invariable dogma, and by its
very constitution is incapable of corrupting morality; she does not
make innovations, she explains.  Thus, for example, the dogma of the
immaculate conception is not new; it was contained in the theotokon of
the Council of Ephesus, and the theotokon is a rigorous consequence of
the Catholic dogma of the incarnation.

   In the same way the Catholic Church makes no excommunications, she
declares them; and she alone can declare them, because she alone is
guardian of unity.

   Outside the vessel of Peter, there is nothing but the abyss.
Protestants are like people who have thrown themselves into the water
in order to escape sea-sickness.

   It is of Catholicity, such as it is constituted in the Roman
Church, that one must say what Voltaire so boldly said of God: "If it
did not exist, it would be necessary to invent it."  But if a man had
been capable of inventing the spirit of charity, he also would have
invented God.  Charity does not invent itself, it reveals itself by
its works, and it is then that one can cry with the Saviour of the
world: "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God!"

   To understand the spirit of charity is to understand all mysteries.

                                ARTICLE IV

                      SOLUTION OF THE FOURTH PROBLEM


                               OPPOSE TO IT.

   THE objections which one may make against religion may be made
either in the name of science, or in the name of reason, or in the
name of faith.

   Science cannot deny the facts of the existence of religion, of its
establishment and its influence upon the events of history.

   It is forbidden to it to touch dogma; dogma belongs wholly to

   Science ordinarily arms itself against religion with a series of
facts which it is her duty to appreciate, which, in fact, she does
appreciate thoroughly, but which she condemns still more energetically
than science does.

   In doing that, science admits that religion is right, and herself
wrong; she lacks logic, manifests the disorder which every angry
passion introduces into the spirit of man, and admits the need that it
has of being ceaselessly redressed and directed by the spirit of

   Reason, on its side, examines dogma and finds it absurd.

   But, if it were not so, reason would understand it; if reason
understood it, it would no longer be the formula of the unknown. {82}

   It would be a mathematical demonstration of the infinite.

   It would be the infinite finite, the unknown known, the
immeasurable measured, the indicible named.

   That is to say that dogma could only cease to be absurd in the eyes
of reason to become, in the eyes of faith, science, reason and good
sense in one, the most monstrous and the most impossible of all

   Remain the objections of dissent.

   The Jews, our fathers in religion, reproach us with having attacked
the unity of God, with having changed the immutable and eternal law,
with adoring the creature instead of the Creator.

   These heavy reproaches are founded on their perfectly false notion
of Christianity.

   Our God is the God of Moses, unique, immaterial, infinite God, sole
object of worship, and ever the same.

   Like the Jews, we believe Him to be present everywhere, but, as
they ought to do, we believe Him living, thinking and loving in
humanity, and we adore Him in His works.

   We have not changed His law, for the Jewish Decalogue is also the
law of Christians.

   The law is immutable because it is founded on the eternal
principles of Nature; but the worship necessitated by the needs of man
may change, and modify itself, parallel with the changes in men

   This signifies that the worship itself is immutable, but modifies
itself as language does.

   Worship is a form of instruction; it is a language; one must
translate it when nations no longer understand it. {83}

   We have translated, and not destroyed, the worship of Moses and of
the prophets.

   In adoring God in creation, we do not adore the creation itself.

   In adoring God in Jesus Christ, it is God alone whom we adore, but
God united to humanity.

   In making humanity divine, Christianity has revealed the human

   The God of the Jews was inhuman, because they did not understand
Him in His works.

   We are, then, more Israelite than the Israelites themselves.  What
they believe, we believe with them, and better than they do.  They
accuse us of having separated ourselves from them, and, on the
contrary, it is they who wish to separate from us.

   We wait for them, the heart and the arms wide open.

   We are, as they are, the disciples of Moses.

   Like them, we come from Egypt, and we detest its slavery.  But we
have entered into the Promised Land, and they obstinately abide and
die in the desert.

   Mohammedans are the bastards of Israel, or rather, they are his
disinherited brothers, like Esau.

   Their belief is illogical, for they admit that Jesus is a great
prophet, and they treat Christians as infidels.

   They recognize the Divine inspiration of Moses, yet they do not
look upon the Jews as their brothers.

   They believe blindly in their blind prophet, the fatalist Mohammed,
the enemy of progress and of liberty.

   Nevertheless, do not let us take away from Mohammed the {84} glory
of having proclaimed the unity of God among the idolatrous Arabs.

   There are pure and sublime pages in the Qur'an.

   In reading those pages, one may say with the children of Ishmael,
"There is no other God but God, and Mohammed is his prophet."

   There are three thrones in heaven for the three prophets of the
nations; but, at the end of time, Mohammed will be replaced by Elias.

   The Mussulmans do not reproach the Christians; they insult them.

   They call them infidels and "giaours," that is to say, dogs.  We
have nothing to reply to them.

   One must not refute the Turks and the Arabs; one must instruct and
civilize them.

   Remain dissident Christians, that is to say, those who, having
broken the bond of unity, declare themselves strangers to the charity
of the Church.

   Greek orthodoxy, that twin of the Roman Church which has not grown
greater since its separation, which counts no longer in religion,
which, since Photius, has not inspired a single eloquence, is a church
become entirely temporal, whose priesthood is no more than a function
regulated by the imperial policy of the Tsar of All the Russias; a
curious mummy of the primitive Church, still coloured and gilded with
all its legends and all its rites, which its popes no longer
understand; the shadow of a living church, but one which insisted on
stopping when that church moved on, and which is now no more than its
bloated-out and headless silhouette.

   Then, the Protestants, those eternal regulators of anarchy, {85}
who have broken down dogma, and are trying always to fill the void
with reasonings, like the sieve of the Danaides; these weavers of
religious fantasy, all of whose innovations are negative, who have
formulated for their own use an unknown calling itself better known,
mysteries better explained, a more defined infinite, a more restrained
immensity, a more doubting faith, those who have quintessentialized
the absurd, divided charity, and taken acts of anarchy for the
principles of an entirely impossible hierarchy; those men who wish to
realize salvation by faith alone, because charity escapes them, and
who can no longer realize it, even upon the earth, for their pretended
sacraments are no longer anything but allegorical mummeries; they no
longer give grace; they no longer make God seen and touched; they are
no longer, in a word, the signs of the almighty power of faith, but
the compelled witnesses of the eternal impotence of doubt.

   It is, then, against faith itself that the Reformation protested!
Protestants were right only in their protest against the inconsiderate
and persecuting zeal which wished to force consciences.  They claimed
the right to doubt, the right to have less religion than others, or
even to have none at all; they have shed their blood for that sad
privilege; they conquered it, they possess it; but they will not take
away from us that of pitying them and loving them.  When the need to
believe again takes them, when their heart revolts against the tyranny
of a falsified reason when they become tired of the empty abstractions
of their arbitrary dogma, of the vague observances of their
ineffective worship; when their communion without the real presence,
their churches without divinity, and their morality without grace
finally frighten {86} them; when they are sick with the nostalgia of
God --- will they not rise up like the prodigal son, and come to throw
themselves at the feet of the successor of Peter, saying: "Father, we
have sinned against heaven and in thy sight, and we are no more worthy
to be called thy sons, but count us among the humblest of thy

   We will not speak of the criticism of Voltaire.  That great mind
was dominated by an ardent love of truth and justice, but he lacked
that rectitude of heart which the intelligence of faith gives. 
Voltaire could not admit faith, because he did not know how to love. 
The spirit of charity did not reveal itself to that soul which had no
tenderness, and he bitterly criticized the hearth of which he did not
feel the warmth, and the lamp of which he did not see the light.  If
religion were such as he saw it, he would have been a thousand times
right to attack it, and one would be obliged to fall on one's knees
before the heroism of his courage. Voltaire would be the Messiah of
good sense, the Hercules destructor of fanaticism. ... But he laughed
too much to understand Him who said: "Happy are they who weep," and
the philosophy of laughter will never have anything in common with the
religion of tears.

   Voltaire parodied the Bible, dogma and worship; and then he mocked
and insulted that parody.

   Only those who recognize religion in Voltaire's parody can take
offence at it.  The Voltaireans are like the frogs in the fable who
leap upon the log, and then make fun of royal majesty.  They are at
liberty to take the log for a king, they are at liberty to make once
more that Roman caricature of which Tertullian once made mirth, that
which represented the {87} God of the Christians under the figure of a
man with an ass's head.  Christians will shrug their shoulders when
they see this knavery, and pray God for the poor ignorants who imagine
that they insult them.

   M. the Count Joseph de Maistre, after having, in one of his most
eloquent paradoxes, represented the hangman as a sacred being, and a
permanent incarnation of divine justice upon earth, suggested that one
should raise to the old man of Ferney a statue executed by the
hangman. There is depth in this thought.  Voltaire, in effect, also
was, in the world, a being at the same time providential and fatal,
endowed with insensibility for the accomplishment of his terrible
functions.  He was, in the domain of intelligence, a hangman, an
extirminator armed by the justice of God Himself.

   God sent Voltaire between the century of Bossuet and that of
Napoleon in order to destroy everything that separates those two
geniuses and to unite them in one alone.

   He was the Samson of the spirit, always ready to shake the columns
of the temple; but in order to make him turn in spite of himself the
mill of religious progress, Providence made him blind of heart.


                                 ARTICLE V

                       SOLUTION OF THE LAST PROBLEM


   SUPERSTITION, from the Latin word "superstes," surviving, is the
sign which survives the idea which it represents; it is the form
preferred to the thing, the rite without reason, faith become
insensate through isolating itself.  It is in consequence the corpse
of religion, the death of life, stupefaction substituted for

   Fanaticism is superstition become passionate, its name comes from
the word "fanum," which signifies "temple," it is the temple put in
place of God, it is the human and temporal interest of the priest
substituted for the honour of priesthood, the wretched passion of the
man exploiting the faith of the believer.

   In the fable of the ass loaded with relics, La Fontaine tells us
that the animal thought that he was being adored; he did not tell us
that certain people indeed thought that they were adoring the animal. 
These people were the superstitious.

   If any one had laughed at their stupidity, he would very likely
have been assassinated, for from superstition to fanaticism is only
one step.

   Superstition is religion interpreted by stupidity; fanaticism is
religion serving as a pretext to fury.

   Those who intentionally and maliciously confound religion {89}
itself with superstition and fanaticism, borrow from stupidity its
blind prejudices, and would borrow perhaps in the same way from
fanaticism its injustices and angers.

   Inquisitors or Septembrisors,<> what matter
names? The religion of Jesus Christ condemns, and has always
condemned, assassins.


                         RESUME OF THE FIRST PART

                         IN THE FORM OF A DIALOGUE

                          FAITH, SCIENCE, REASON.

   SCIENCE.  You will never make me believe in the existence of God.

   FAITH.  You have not the privilege of believing, but you will never
prove to me that God does not exist.

   SCIENCE.  In order to prove it to you, I must first know what God

   FAITH.  You will never know it.  If you knew it, you could teach it
to me; and when I knew it, I should no longer believe it.

   SCIENCE.  Do you then believe without knowing what you believe?

   FAITH.  Oh, do not let us play with words!  It is you who do not
know what I believe, and I believe it precisely because you do not
know it.  Do you pretend to be infinite?  Are you not stopped at every
step by mystery? Mystery is for you an infinite ignorance which would
reduce to nothing your finite knowledge, if I did not illumine it with
my burning aspirations; and if, when you say, "I no longer know," I
did not cry, "As for me, I begin to believe."

   SCIENCE.  But your aspirations and their object are not (and cannot
be for me) anything but hypotheses. {91}

   FAITH.  Doubtless, but they are certainties for me, since without
those hypotheses I should be doubtful even about your certainties.

   SCIENCE.  But if you begin where I stop, you begin always too
rashly and too soon.  My progress bears witness that I am ever

   FAITH.  What does your progress matter, if I am always walking in
front of you?

   SCIENCE.  You, walking!  Dreamer of eternity, you have disdained
earth too much; your feet are benumbed.

   FAITH.  I make my children carry me.

   SCIENCE.  They are the blind carrying the blind; beware of

   FAITH.  No, my children are by no means blind; on the contrary,
they enjoy twofold sight: they see, by thine eyes, what thou canst
show them upon earth, and they contemplate, by mine, what I show them
in Heaven.

   SCIENCE.  What does Reason think of it?

   REASON.  I think, my dear teachers, that you illustrate a touching
fable, that of the blind man and the paralytic.  Science reproaches
Faith with not knowing how to walk upon the earth, and Faith says that
Science sees nothing of her aspirations and of eternity in the sky. 
Instead of quarrelling, Science and Faith ought to unite; let Science
carry Faith, and let Faith console Science by teaching her to hope and
to love!

   SCIENCE.  It is a fine ideal, but Utopian.  Faith will tell me
absurdities.  I prefer to walk without her.

   FAITH.  What do you call absurdities?

   SCIENCE.  I call absurdities propositions contrary to my
demonstrations; as, for example, that three make one, that a {92} God
has become man, that is to say, that the Infinite has made itself
finite, that the Eternal died, that God punished his innocent Son for
the sin of guilty men. ...

   FAITH.  Say no more about it.  As enunciated by you, these
propositions are in fact absurdities.  Do you know what is the number
of God, you who do not know God?  Can you reason about the operations
of the unknown?  Can you understand the mysteries of charity?  I must
always be absurd for you; for, if you understood them, my affirmations
would be absorbed by your theorems; I should be you, and you would be
me; or, to put it better, I should no longer exist, and Reason, in the
presence of the infinite, would halt, blinded for evermore by your
doubts, which are as infinite as space.

   SCIENCE.  At least, you should never usurp my authority, or give me
the lie in my own domains.

   FAITH.  I have never done so, and I could never do so.

   SCIENCE.  So!  You have never believed, for example, that a virgin
could become a mother, without ceasing to be a virgin, in the
physical, natural, positive order of things, in spite of all the laws
of Nature; you do not affirm that a piece of bread is not only a God,
but a real human body with its bones and its veins, its organs, its
blood; such, in short, that you make of your children who eat this
bread a little race of cannibals.

   FAITH.  There is not a single Christian who would not be revolted
by what you have just said.  That sufficiently proves that they do not
understand my teachings in this positive and gross sense.  The
supernatural which I affirm is above Nature, and consequently could
never oppose itself to her; the words of Faith are understood only by
Faith; Science has only to repeat them to pervert their proper sense. 
I employ these {93} words because I have no others; but since you find
my remarks absurd, you should conclude from that that I give to the
same words a meaning which escapes you.  When the Saviour revealed the
dogma of the real presence, did he not say: "The flesh profiteth
nothing, but my words are spirit and life."  I do not give you the
mystery of the incarnation for an anatomical phenomenon, nor that of
transubstantiation for a chemical manipulation.  By what right do you
exclaim "Absurd!"?  I do not reason about any of the things you know;
by what right do you say that I talk unreasonably?

   SCIENCE.  I begin to understand you, or rather, I see that I shall
never understand you.  This being so, let us remain separate; I shall
never have need of you.

   FAITH.  I am less proud, and I recognize that you may be useful to
me perhaps.  Perhaps, too, you will be very sad and very desperate
without me, and I will not leave you unless Reason consents.

   REASON.  Be well 'ware of doing so!  I am necessary to both of you.
 And I, what should I do without you?  In order to be just, I need to
know and to believe.  But I must never confound what I know with what
I believe.  To know is to believe no longer; to believe is not to know
as yet.  The object of Science is the known; Faith does not occupy
itself with that, and leaves it all to Science.  The object of Faith
is the unknown; Science may seek it, but not define it; she is then
obliged, at least provisionally, to accept the definitions of Faith
which it is impossible for her even to criticize.  Only, if Science
renounces Faith, she renounces hope and love, whose existence and
necessity are as evident for Science as for Faith. Faith, as a
psychological fact, pertains to the realm of {94} Science; and
Science, as the manifestation of the light of God within the human
intelligence, pertains to the realm of Faith.  Science and Faith must
then admit each other, respect each other mutually, support each
other, and bear each other aid in case of need, but without ever
encroaching the one upon the other.  The means of uniting them is ---
never to confound them.  Never can there be contradiction between
them, for although they use the same words,, they do not speak the
same language.

   FAITH.  Oh, well, Sister Science; what do you say about it?

   SCIENCE.  I say that we are separated by a deplorable
misunderstanding, and that henceforward we shall be able to walk
together.  But to which of your different creeds do you wish to attach
me?  Shall I be Jewish, Catholic, Mohammedan, or Protestant?

   FAITH.  You will remain Science, and you will be universal.

   SCIENCE.  That is to say, Catholic, if I understand you correctly. 
But what should I think of the different religions?

   FAITH.  Judge them by their works.  Seek true Charity, and when you
have found her, ask her to which religion she belongs.

   SCIENCE.  It is certainly not to that of the Inquisition, and of
the authors of the Massacre of St. Bartholomew.

   FAITH.  It is to that of St. John the Almoner, of St. Francois de
Sales,<> of St. Vincent de Paul, of Fenelon, and so
many more. {95}

   SCIENCE.  Admit that if religion has produced much good, she has
also done much evil.

   FAITH.  When one kills in the name of the God who said, "Thou shalt
not kill,"<> when one
persecutes in the name of Him who commands us to forgive our enemies,
when one propagates darkness in the name of Him who tells us not to
hide the light under a bushel, is it just to attribute the crime to
the very law which condemns it?  Say, if you wish to be just, that in
spite of religion, much evil has been done upon earth.  But also, to
how many virtues has it not given birth?  How many are the devotions,
how many the sacrifices, of which we do not know!  Have you counted
those noble hearts, both men and women, who renounced all joys to
enter the service of all sorrows?  Those souls devoted to labour and
to prayer, who have strewn their pathways with good deeds?  Who
founded asylums for orphans and old men, hospitals for the sick,
retreats for the repentant?  These institutions, as glorious as they
are modest, are the real works with which the annals of the Church are
filled; religious wars and the persecution of heretics belong to the
politics of savage centuries.  The heretics, moreover, were themselves
murderers.  Have you forgotten the burning of Michael Servetus and the
massacre of our priests, renewed, still in the name of humanity and
reason, by the revolutionaries who hated the Inquisition and the
Massacre of St. Bartholomew?  Men are always cruel, it is true, but
only when they forget the religion whose watchwords are blessing and

   SCIENCE.  O Faith!  Pardon me, then, if I cannot believe; {96} but
I know now why you believe.  I respect your hopes, and share your
desires. But I must find by seeking; and in order to seek, I must

   REASON.  Work, then, and seek, O Science, but respect the oracles
of Faith!  When your doubt leaves a gap in universal enlightenment,
allow Faith to fill it!  Walk distinguished the one from the other,
but leaning the one upon the other, and you will never go astray.


                                  PART II

                          PHILOSOPHICAL MYSTERIES

                        PRELIMINARY CONSIDERATIONS

   IT has been said that beauty is the splendour of truth.

   Now moral beauty is goodness.  It is beautiful to be good.

   To be intelligently good, one must be just.

   To be just, one must act reasonably.

   To act reasonably, one must have the knowledge of reality.

   To have the knowledge of reality, one must have consciousness of

   To have consciousness of truth, one must have an exact notion of

   Being, truth, reason and justice are the common objects of the
researches of science, and of the aspirations of faith.  The
conceptions, whether real or hypothetical, of a supreme power
transform justice into Providence; and the notion of divinity, from
this point of view, becomes accessible to science herself.

   Science studies Being in its partial manifestation; faith supposes
it, or rather admits it "a priori" as a whole.

   Science seeks the truth in everything; faith refers everything to
an universal and absolute truth.

   Science records realities in detail: faith explains them by {98}
totalized reality to which science cannot bear witness, but which the
very existence of the details seems to force her to recognize and to

   Science submits the reasons of persons and things to the universal
mathematical reason; faith seeks, or rather supposes, an intelligent
and absolute reason for (and above) mathematics themselves.

   Science demonstrates justice by justness; faith gives an absolute
justness to justice, in subordinating it to Providence.

   One sees here all that faith borrows from science, and all that
science, in its turn, owes to faith.

   Without faith, science is circumscribed by an absolute doubt, and
finds itself eternally penned within the risky empiricism of a
reasoning scepticism; without science, faith constructs its hypotheses
at random, and can only blindly prejudge the causes of the effects of
which she is ignorant.

   The great chain which reunites science and faith is analogy.

   Science is obliged to respect a belief whose hypotheses are
analogous to demonstrated truths.  Faith, which attributes everything
to God, is obliged to admit science as being a natural revelation
which, by the partial manifestation of the laws of eternal reason,
gives a scale of proportion to all the aspirations and to all the
excursions of the soul into the domain of the unknown.

   It is, then, faith alone that can give a solution to the mysteries
of science; and in return, it is science alone that demonstrates the
necessity of the mysteries of faith.

   Outside the union and the concourse of these two living forces of
the intelligence, there is for science nothing but {99} scepticism and
despair, for faith nothing but rashness and fanaticism.

   If faith insults science, she blasphemes; if science misunderstand
faith, she abdicates.

   Now let us hear them speak in harmony!

   "Being is everywhere," says science. "it is multiple and variable
in its forms, unique in its essence, and immutable in its laws.  The
relative demonstrates the existence of the absolute.  Intelligence
exists in being. Intelligence animates and modifies matter."

   "Intelligence is everywhere," says faith; "Life is nowhere fatal
because it is ruled.  This rule is the expression of supreme Wisdom. 
The absolute in intelligence, the supreme regulator of forms, the
living ideal of spirits, is God."

   "In its identity with the ideal, being is truth," says science.

   "In its identity with the ideal, truth is God," replies faith.

   "In its identity with my demonstrations, being is reality," says

   "In its identity with my legitimate aspirations, reality is my
dogma," says faith.

   "In its identity with the Word, being is reason," says science.

   "In its identity with the spirit of charity, the highest reason is
my obedience," says faith.

   "In its identity with the motive of reasonable acts, being is
justice," says science.

   "In its identity with the principle of charity, justice is
Providence," replies faith.

   Sublime harmony of all certainties with all hopes, of the {100}
absolute in intelligence with the absolute in love!  The Holy Spirit,
the spirit of charity, should then conciliate all, and transform all
into His own light.  Is it not the spirit of intelligence, the spirit
of science, the spirit of counsel, the spirit of force?  "He must
come," says the Catholic liturgy, "and it will be, as it were, a new
creation; and He will change the face of the earth."

   "To laugh at philosophy is already to philosophize," said Pascal,
referring to that sceptical and incredulous philosophy which does not
recognize faith.  And if there existed a faith which trampled science
underfoot, we should not say that to laugh at such a faith would be a
true act of religion, for religion, which is all charity, does not
tolerate mockery; but one would be right in blaming this love for
ignorance, and in saying to this rash faith, "Since you slight your
sister, you are not the daughter of God!"

   Truth, reality, reason, justice, Providence, these are the five
rays of the flamboyant star in the centre of which science will write
the word "being," --- to which faith will add the ineffable name of

                       SOLUTION OF THE PHILOSOPHICAL


                               FIRST SERIES

   QUESTION.  What is truth?

   ANSWER.  Idea identical with being. {101}<>

   Q.  What is reality?

   A.  Knowledge identical with being.

   Q.  What is reason?

   A.  The Word identical with being.

   Q.  What is justice?

   A.  The motive of acts identical with being.

   Q.  What is the absolute?

   A.  Being.

   Q.  Can one conceive anything superior to being?

   A.  No; but one conceives in being itself something supereminent
and transcendental.

   Q.  What is that?

   A.  The supreme reason of being.

   Q.  Do you know it, and can you define it?

   A.  Faith alone affirms it, and names it God.

   Q.  Is there anything above truth?

   A.  Above known truth, there is unknown truth.

   Q.  How can one construct reasonable hypotheses with regard to this

   A.  By analogy and proportion.

   Q.  How can one define it?

   A.  By the symbols of faith.

   Q.  Can one say of reality the same thing as of truth?

   A.  Exactly the same thing.

   Q.  Is there anything above reason?

   A.  Above finite reason, there is infinite reason.

   Q.  What is infinite reason?

   A.  It is that supreme reason of being that faith calls God.<>

   Q.  Is there anything above justice? {102}

   A.  Yes; according to faith, there is the Providence of God, and
the sacrifice of man.

   Q.  What is this sacrifice?

   A.  It is the willing and spontaneous surrender of right.

   Q.  Is this sacrifice reasonable?

   A.  No; it is a kind of folly greater than reason, for reason is
forced to admire it.

   Q.  How does one call a man who acts according to truth, reality,
reason and justice?

   A.  A moral man.

   Q.  And if he sacrifices his interests to justice?

   A.  A man of honour.

   Q.  And if in order to imitate the grandeur and goodness of
Providence he does more than his duty, and sacrifices his right to the
good of others?

   A.  A hero.

   Q.  What is the principle of true heroism?

   A.  Faith.

   Q.  What is its support?

   A.  Hope.

   Q.  And its rule?

   A.  Charity.

   Q.  What is the Good?

   A.  Order.

   Q.  What is the Evil?

   A.  Disorder.

   Q.  What is permissible pleasure?

   A.  Enjoyment of order.

   Q.  What is forbidden pleasure?

   A.  Enjoyment of disorder. {103}

   Q.  What are the consequences of each?

   A.  Moral life and moral death.

   Q.  Has then hell, with all its horrors, its justification in
religious dogma?

   A.  Yes; it is a rigorous consequence of a principle.

   Q.  What is this principle?

   A.  Liberty.

   Q.  What is liberty?

   A.  The right to do one's duty, with the possibility of not doing

   Q.  What is failing in one's duty?

   A.  It involves the loss of one's right.  Now, right being eternal,
to lose it is to suffer an eternal loss.

   Q.  Can one repair a fault?

   A.  Yes; by expiation.

   Q.  What is expiation?

   A.  Working overtime.  Thus, because I was lazy yesterday, I had to
do a double task to-day.

   Q.  What are we to think of those who impose on themselves
voluntary sufferings?

   A.  If they do so in order to overcome the brutal fascination of
pleasure, they are wise; if to suffer instead of others, they are
generous; but if they do it without discretion and without measure,
they are imprudent.

   Q.  Thus, in the eyes of true philosophy, religion is wise in all
that it ordains?

   A.  You see that it is so.

   Q.  But if, after all, we were deceived in our eternal hopes?

   A.  Faith does not admit that doubt.  But philosophy herself should
reply that all the pleasures of the earth are not {104} worth one day
of wisdom, and that all the triumphs of ambition are not worth a
single minute of heroism and of charity.

                               SECOND SERIES

   QUESTION.  What is man?

   ANSWER.  Man is an intelligent and corporeal being made in the
image of God and of the world, one in essence, triple in substance,
mortal and immortal.

   Q.  You say, "triple in substance."  Has man, then, two souls or
two bodies?

   A.  No; there is in him a spiritual soul, a material body, and a
plastic medium.

   Q.  What is the substance of this medium?

   A.  Light, partially volatile, and partially fixed.

   Q.  What is the volatile part of this light?

   A.  Magnetic fluid.<>

   Q.  And the fixed part?

   A.  The fluidic or fragrant body.

   Q.  Is the existence of this body demonstrated?

   A.  Yes; by the most curious and the most conclusive experiences. 
We shall speak of them in the third part of this work.

   Q.  Are these experiences articles of faith?

   A.  No, they pertain to science.<>

   Q.  But will science preoccupy herself with it?

   A.  She already preoccupies herself with it.  We have written this
book and you are reading it.

   Q.  Give us some notions of this plastic medium.

   A.  It is formed of astral or terrestrial light, and transmits
{105} the double magnetization of it to the human body.  The soul, by
acting on this light through its volitions, can dissolve it or
coagulate it, project it or withdraw it.  It is the mirror of the
imagination and of dreams.  It reacts upon the nervous system, and
thus produces the movements of the body.  This light can dilate itself
indefinitely, and communicate its reflections at considerable
distances; it magnetizes the bodies submitted to the action of man,
and can, by concentrating itself, again draw them to him.  It can take
all the forms evoked by thought, and, in the transitory coagulations
of its radiant particles, appear to the eyes; it can even offer a sort
of resistance to the touch.  But these manifestations and uses of the
plastic medium being abnormal, the luminous instrument of precision
cannot produce them without being strained, and there is danger of
either habitual hallucination, or of insanity.

   Q.  What is animal magnetism?

   A.  The action of one plastic medium upon another, in order to
dissolve or coagulate it.  By augmenting the elasticity of the vital
light and its force of projection, one sends it forth as far as one
will, and withdraws it completely loaded with images; but this
operation must be favoured by the slumber of the subject, which one
produces by coagulating still further the fixed part of his medium.

   Q.  Is magnetism contrary to morality and religion?

   A.  Yes, when one abuses it.

   Q.  In what does the abuse of it consist?

   A.  In employing it in a disordered manner, or for a disordered

   Q.  What is a disordered magnetism? {106}

   A.  An unwholesome fluidic emission, made with a bad intention; for
example, to know the secrets of others, or to arrive at unworthy ends.

   Q.  What is the result of it?

   A.  It puts out of order the fluidic instrument of precision, both
in the case of the magnetizer and of the magnetized.  To this cause
one must attribute the immoralities and the follies with which a great
number of those who occupy themselves with magnetism are reproached.

   Q.  What conditions are required in order to magnetize properly?

   A.  Health of spirit and body; right intention, and discreet

   Q.  What advantageous results can one obtain by discreet magnetism?

   A.  The cure of nervous diseases, the analysis of presentiments,
the re- establishment of fluidic harmonies, and the rediscovery of
certain secrets of Nature.

   Q.  Explain that to us in a more complete manner.

   A.  We shall do so in the third part of this work, which will treat
specially of the mysteries of Nature.


                                 PART III

                          THE MYSTERIES OF NATURE

                          THE GREAT MAGICAL AGENT

  WE have spoken of a substance extended in the infinite.

{Illustration on page 108 described:

This is sub-titled below "THE TENTH KEY OF THE TAROT".

It is a type of the Wheel of Fortune.  The wheel itself is erected on
a wooden post, and has a crank affixed to the hub.  There is no image
of Fortuna to turn it.  The base of the post is held by a blunt double
crescent on the ground, rounded horns slightly up and in parallel like
a hot-dog bun.  Two nosed serpents issue from the base, cross once and
arch toward the post just below the wheel.  The wheel is double,
having an outer and an inner ring with eight spokes running through
both rims.  The spokes have a circular expansion with central hole
inside and a bit short of the inner rim.  These spokes appear to be
riveted to the inner rim.  At the top of the wheel is the Nemesis
seated on a platform as a sphinx with a sword: head cloth, stern male
face and woman's breasts, winged.  The sword is hilt to wheel and up
to left.  "ARCHEE" is written over the wing to the left. Risking on
the right of the wheel is a Hermanubus or variation of Serapis: Dog's
head, human body, carries a caduceus half hidden behind head and
wheel, legs before wheel.  "AZOTH" is written above the head of this
figure.  A demon reminiscent of Proteus descends the wheel on the
left. His head is bearded and horned, his legs are tentacular and
finned.  He carries a trident below.  "HYLE" is written below his

   That substance is one which is heaven and earth; that is to say,
according to its degrees of polarization, subtle or fixed.  {108}

   This substance is what Hermes Trismegistus calls the great
"Telesma." When it produces splendour, it is called Light.

   It is this substance which God creates before everything else, when
He says, "Let there be light."

   It is at once substance and movement.

   It is fluid, and a perpetual vibration.

   Its inherent force which set it is motion is called "magnetism."

   In the infinite, this unique substance is the ether, or the etheric

   In the stars which it magnetizes, it becomes astral light.

   In organized beings, light, or magnetic fluid.

   In man it forms the "astral body," or the "plastic medium."

   The will of intelligent beings acts directly on this light, and by
means of it on all that part of Nature which is submitted to the
modifications of intelligence.

   This light is the common mirror of all thoughts and all forms; it
preserves the images of everything that has been, the reflections of
past worlds, and, by analogy, the sketches of worlds to come.  It is
the instrument of thaumaturgy and divination, as remains for us to
explain in the third and last part of this work. {109}

                                FIRST BOOK

                            MAGNETIC MYSTERIES

                                 CHAPTER I

                           THE KEY OF MESMERISM

   MESMER rediscovered the secret science of Nature; he did not invent

   The first unique and elementary substance whose existence he
proclaims in his aphorisms, was known by Hermes and Pythagoras.

   Synesius, who sings it in his hymns, had found it revealed in the
Platonistic records of the School of Alexandria:

                     GR:Mu-iota-alpha pi-alpha-gamma-alpha





                      .  .  .  .  .  .  .

                     Pi-epsilon-rho-iota gamma-alpha-rho







                          lambda omicron-iota-sigma-iota


   "A single source, a single root of light, jets out and spreads
itself into three branches of splendour.  A breath blows round the
earth, and vivifies in innumerable forms all parts of animated
substance." (HYMN II --- "Synesius.")

   Mesmer saw in elementary matter a substance indifferent to movement
as to rest.  Submitted to movement, it is volatile; fallen back into
rest, it is fixed; and he did not understand that movement is inherent
in the first substance; that it results, not from its indifference,
but from its aptitude, combined with a movement and a rest which are
equilibrated {110} the one by the other; that absolute rest is nowhere
in universal living matter, but that the fixed attracts the volatile
in order to fix it; while the volatile attacks the fixed in order to
volatilize it.  That the supposed rest of particles apparently fixed,
in nothing but a more desperate struggle and a greater tension of
their fluidic forces. which by neutralizing each other make themselves
immobile.  It is thus that, as Hermes says, that which is above is
like that which is below; the same force which expands steam,
contracts and hardens the icicle;<>
everything obeys the laws of life which are inherent in the original
substance; this substance attracts and repels, in coagulates itself
and dissolves itself, with a constant harmony; it is double; it is
androgynous; it embraces itself, and fertilizes itself, it struggles,
triumphs, destroys, renews; but never abandons itself to inertia,
because inertia, for it, would be death.

   It is this original substance to which the hieratic recital of
Genesis refers when the word of Elohim creates light by commanding it
to exist.

   The Elohim said, "Let there be light!" and there was light.

   This light, whose Hebrew name is HB:Aleph-Vau-Resh, "aour," is the
fluidic and living gold of the hermetic philosophy.  Its positive
principle is their sulphur; its negative principle, their mercury; and
its equilibrated principles form what they call their salt.

   One must then, in place of the sixth aphorism of Mesmer which reads
thus: "Matter is indifferent as to whether it is in movement or at
rest," establish this proposition: "The universal matter is compelled
to movement by its double magnetization, and its fate is to seek
equilibrium."  {111}

   Whence one may deduce these corollaries:

   Regularity and variety in movement result from the different
combinations of equilibrium.

   A point equilibrated on all sides remains at rest, for the very
reason that it is endowed with motion.

   Fluid consists of rapidly moving matter, always stirred by the
variation of the balancing forces.

   A solid is the same matter in slow movement, or at apparent rest
because it is more or less solidly balanced.

   There is no solid body which would not immediately be pulverized,
vanish in smoke, and become invisible if the equilibrium of its
molecules were to cease suddenly.

   There is no fluid which would not instantly become harder than the
diamond, if one could equilibrate its constituent molecules.<>

   To direct the magnetic forces is then to destroy or create forms;
to produce to all appearance, or to destroy bodies; it is to exercise
the almighty power of Nature.

   Our plastic medium is a magnet which attracts or repels the astral
light under the pressure of the will.  It is a luminous body which
reproduces with the greatest ease forms corresponding to ideas.

   It is the mirror of the imagination.  This body is nourished by
astral light just as the organic body is nourished by the products of
the earth. During slumber, it absorbs the astral light by immersion,
and during waking, by a kind of somewhat slow respiration.  When the
phenomena of natural somnambulism are produced, the plastic medium is
surcharged with ill-digested nourishment.  The will, although bound by
the torpor of slumber, repels instinctively the medium {112} towards
the organs in order to disengage it, and a reaction, of mechanical
nature, takes place, which with the movement of the body equilibrates
the light of the medium.  It is for that reason that it {is} so
dangerous to wake somnambulists suddenly, for the gorged medium may
then withdraw itself suddenly towards the common reservoir, and
abandon the organs altogether; these are then separated from the soul,
and death is the result.

   The state of somnambulism, whether natural or artificial, is then
extremely dangerous, because in uniting the phenomena of the waking
state and the state of slumber, it constitutes a sort of straddle
between two worlds.  The soul moves the springs of the particular life
while bathing itself in the universal life, and experiences an
inexpressible sense of well-being; it will then willingly let go the
nervous branches which hold it suspended above the current.  In
ecstasies of every kind the situation is the same.  If the will
plunges into it with a passionate effort, or even abandons itself
entirely to it, the subject may become insane or paralysed, or even

   Hallucinations and vision result from wounds inflicted on the
plastic medium, and from its local paralysis.  Sometimes it ceases to
give forth rays, and substitutes images condensed somehow or other to
realities shown by the light; sometimes it radiates with too much
force, and condense itself outside and around some chance and
irregulated nucleus, as blood does in some bodily growths.  Then the
chimeras of our brain take on a body, and seem to take on a soul; we
appear to ourselves radiant or deformed according to the image of the
ideal of our desires, or our fears.

   Hallucinations, being the dreams of waking persons, {113} always
imply a state analogous to somnambulism.  But in a contrary sense;
somnambulism is slumber borrowing its phenomena from waking;
hallucination is waking still partially subjected to the astral
intoxication of slumber.

   Our fluidic bodies attract and repulse each other following laws
similar to those of electricity.  It is this which produces
instinctive sympathies and antipathies.  They thus equilibrate each
other, and for this reason hallucinations are often contagious;
abnormal projections change the luminous currents; the perturbation
caused by a sick person wins over to itself the more sensitive
natures; a circle of illusions is established, and a whole crowd of
people is easily dragged away thereby.  Such is the history of strange
apparitions and popular prodigies.  Thus are explained the miracles of
the American mediums and the hysterics of table-turners, who reproduce
in our own times the ecstasies of whirling dervishes.  The sorcerers
of Lapland with their magic drums, and the conjurer medicine-men of
savages arrive at similar results by similar proceedings; their gods
or their devils have nothing to do with it.

   Madmen and idiots are more sensitive to magnetism than people of
sound minds; it should be easy to understand the reason of that: very
little is required to turn completely the head of a drunken man, and
one more easily acquires a disease when all the organs are predisposed
to submit to its impressions, and manifest its disorders.<>

   Fluidic maladies have their fatal crises.  Every abnormal tension
of the nervous apparatus ends in the contrary tension, according to
the necessary laws of equilibrium.  An exaggerated love changes to
aversion, and every exalted hate comes very {114} near to love; the
reaction happens suddenly with the flame and violence of the
thunderbolt.  Ignorance then laments it or exclaims against it;
science resigns itself, and remains silent.

   There are two loves, that of the heart, and that of the head: the
love of the heart never excites itself, it gathers itself together,
and grows slowly by the path of ordeal and sacrifice; purely nervous
and passionate cerebral love lives only on enthusiasm, dashes itself
against all duties, treats the beloved object as a prize of conquest,
is selfish, exacting, restless, tyrannical, and is fated to drag after
it either suicide as the final catastrophe, or adultery as a remedy. 
These phenomena are constant like nature, inexorable as fatality.

   A young artist full of courage, with her future all before her, had
a husband, an honest man, a seeker after knowledge, a poet, whose only
fault was an excess of love for her; she outraged him and left him,
and has continued to hate him ever since.  Yet she, too, is a decent
woman; the pitiless world, however, judges and condemns her.  And yet,
this was not her crime.  Her fault, if one may be permitted to

reproach her with one, was that, at first, she madly and passionately
loved her husband.

   "But," you will say, "is not the human soul, then, free?"  No, it
is no longer free when it has abandoned itself to the giddiness caused
by passion.  It is only wisdom which is free; disordered passions are
the kingdom of folly, and folly is fatality.

   What we have said of love may equally well be said of religion,
which is the most powerful, but also the most intoxicating, of all
loves.  Religious passion has also its excesses {115} and its fatal
reactions.  One may have ecstasies and stigmata like St. Francis of
Assisi, and fall afterwards into abysses of debauch and impiety.

   Passionate natures are highly charged magnets; they attract or
repel with violence.

   It is possible to magnetize in two ways: first, in acting by will
upon the plastic medium of another person, whose will and whose acts
are, in consequence, subordinated to that action.

   Secondly, in acting through the will of another, either by
intimidation, or by persuasion, so that the influenced will modifies
at our pleasure the plastic medium and the acts of that person.

   One magnetizes by radiation, by contact, by look, or by word.

   The vibrations of the voice modify the movement of the astral
light, and are a powerful vehicle of magnetism.

   The warm breath magnetizes positively, and the cold breath

   A warm and prolonged insufflation upon the spinal column at the
base of the cerebellum may occasion erotic phenomena.

   If one puts the right hand upon the head and the left hand under
the feet of a person completely enveloped with wool or silk, one
causes the magnetic spark to pass completely through the body, and one
may thus occasion a nervous revolution in his organism with the
rapidity of lightning.

   Magnetic passes only serve to direct the will of the magnetizer in
confirming it by acts.  They are signs and nothing more.  The act of
the will is expressed and not operated by these signs. {116}

   Powdered charcoal absorbs and retains the astral light.  This
explains the magic mirror of Dupotet.

   Figures traced in charcoal appear luminous to a magnetized person,
and take, for him, following the direction indicated by the will of
the magnetizer, the most gracious or the most terrifying forms.

   The astral light, or rather the vital light, of the plastic medium,
absorbed by the charcoal, becomes wholly negative; for this reason
animals which are tormented by electricity, as for example, cats, love
to roll themselves upon coal.<>   One day, medicine
will make use of this property, and nervous persons will find great
relief from it.

                                CHAPTER II

                   LIVE AND DEATH. --- SLEEP AND WAKING

   SLEEP is an incomplete death; death is a complete sleep.

   Nature subjects us to sleep in order to accustom us to the idea of
death, and warns us by dreams of the persistence of another life.

   The astral light into which sleep plunges us is like an ocean in
which innumerable images are afloat, flotsam of wrecked existences,
mirages and reflections of those which pass, presentiments of those
which are about to be.

   Our nervous disposition attracts to us those images which
correspond to our agitation, to the nature of our fatigue, just as a
magnet, moved among particles of various metals, would attract to
itself and choose particularly the iron filings. {117}

   Dreams reveal to us the sickness or the health, the calm or the
disturbance, of our plastic medium, and consequently, also, that of
our nervous apparatus.

   They formulate our presentiments by the analogy which the images
bear to them.

   For all ideas have a double significance for us, relating to our
double life.

   There exists a language of sleep; in the waking state it is
impossible to understand it, or even to order its words.

   The language of slumber is that of nature, hieroglyphic in its
character, and rhythmical in its sounds.

   Slumber may be either giddy or lucid.

   Madness is a permanent state of vertiginous somnambulism.

   A violent disturbance may wake madmen to sense, or kill them.

   Hallucinations, when they obtain the adhesion of the intelligence,
are transitory attacks of madness.

   Every mental fatigue provokes slumber; but if the fatigue is
accompanied by nervous irritation, the slumber may be incomplete, and
take on the character of somnambulism.

   One sometimes goes to sleep without knowing it in the midst of real
life; and then instead of thinking, one dreams.

   How is it that we remember things which have never happened to us?
Because we dreamt them when wide awake.

   This phenomenon of involuntary and unperceived sleep when it
suddenly traverses real life, often happens to those who over-excite
their nervous organism by excesses either of work, vigil, drink, or
erethism. {118}

   Monomaniacs are asleep when they perform unreasonable acts.  They
no longer remember anything on waking.

   When Papvoine was arrested by the police, he calmly said to them
these remarkable words: "You are taking the other for me."

   It was the somnambulist who was still speaking.

   Edgar Poe, that unhappy man of genius who used to intoxicate
himself, has terribly described the somnambulism of monomaniacs. 
Sometimes it is an assassin who hears, and who thinks that everybody
hears, through the wall of the tomb, the beating of his victim's
heart; sometimes it is a poisoner who, by dint of saying to himself,
"I am safe, provided I do not go and denounce myself," ends by
dreaming aloud that he is denouncing himself, and in fact does so. 
Edgar Poe himself invented neither the persons nor the facts of these
strange novels; he dreamt them waking, and that is why he clothed them
so well with all the colours of a shocking reality.

   Dr. Briere de Boismont in his remarkable work on "Hallucinations,"
tells the story of an Englishman otherwise quite sane, who thought
that he had met a stranger and made his acquaintance, who took him to
lunch at his tavern, and then having asked him to visit St. Paul's in
his company, had tried to throw him from the top of the tower which
they had climbed together.<>

   From that moment the Englishman was obsessed by this stranger, whom
he alone could see, and whom he always met when he was alone, and had
dined well.

   Precipices attract; drunkenness calls to drunkenness; madness has
invincible charms for madness.  When a man {119} succumbs to sleep, he
holds in horror everything which might wake him.  It is the same with
the hallucinated, with statical somnambulists, maniacs, epileptics,
and all those who abandon themselves to the delirium of a passion. 
They have heard the fatal music, they have entered into the dance of
death; and they feel themselves dragged away into the whirl of
vertigo.  You speak to them, they no more hear you; you warn them,
they no longer understand you, but your voice annoys them; they are
asleep with the sleep of death.

   Death is a current which carries you away, a whirlpool which draws
you down, but from the bottom of which the least movement may make you
climb again.  The force or repulsion being equal to that of
attraction, at the very moment of expiring, one often attaches oneself
again violent to life.  Often also, by the same law of equilibrium,
one passes from sleep to death through complaisance for sleep.

   A shallop sways upon the shores of the lake.  The child enters the
water, which, shining with a thousand reflections, dances around him
and calls him; the chain which retains the boat stretches and seems to
wish to break itself; then a marvellous bird shoots out from the bank,
and skims, singing, upon the joyous waves; the child wishes to follow
it, he puts his hand upon the chain, he detaches the ring.

   Antiquity divined the mystery of the attraction of death, and
represented it in the fable of Hylas.  Weary with a long voyage, Hylas
has arrived in a flowered, enamelled isle; he approaches a fountain to
draw water; a gracious mirage smiles at him; he sees a nymph stretch
out her arms to him, his own lose nerve, and cannot draw back the
heavy jar; the fresh fragrance of the spring put him to sleep; the
perfumes {120} of the bank intoxicate him.  There he is, bent over the
water like a narcissus whose stalk has been broken by a child at play;
the full jar falls to the bottom, and Hylas follows it; he dies,
dreaming that nymphs caress him, and no longer hears the voice of
Hercules recalling him to the labours of life; Hercules, who runs
wildly everywhere, crying, "Hylas! Hylas!"

   Another fable, not less touching, which steps forth from the
shadows of the Orphic initiation, is that of Eurydice recalled to life
by the miracles of harmony and love, of Eurydice, that sensitive
broken on the very day of her marriage, who takes refuge in the tomb,
trembling with modesty.  Soon she hears the lyre of Orpheus, and
slowly climbs again towards the light; the terrible divinities of
Erebus dare not bar her passage.  She follows the poet, or rather the
poetry which adores. ...  But, woe to the lover if he changes the
magnetic current and pursues in his turn, with a single look, her whom
he should only attract!  The sacred love, the virginal love, the love
which is stronger than the tomb, seeks only devotion, and flies in
terror before the egoism of desire.  Orpheus knows it; but, for an
instant, he forgets it.  Eurydice, in her white bridal dress, lies
upon the marriage bed; he wears the vestments of Grand Hierophant, he
stands upright, his lyre in his hand, his head crowned with the sacred
laurel, his eyes turned towards the East, and he sings.  He sings of
the luminous arrows of love that traverse the shadows of old Chaos,
the waves of soft, clear light, flowing from the black teats of the
mother of the gods, from which hang the two children, Eros and
Anteros.  He says the song of Adonis returning to life in answer to
the complaint of Venus, reviving like a flower under the shining dew
of her {121} tears; the song of Castor and Pollux, whom death could
not divide, and who love alternately in hell and upon earth. ... Then
he calls softly Eurydice, his dear Eurydice, his so much loved

               Ah! miseram Eurydicen anima fugiente vocabat,

               Eurydicen! toto referebant flumine ripae.

   While he sings, that pallid statue of the sculptor death takes on
the colour of the first tint of life, its white lips begin to redden
like the dawn ... Orpheus sees her, he trembles, he stammers, the hymn
almost dies upon his lips, but she pales anew; then the Grand
Hierophant tears from his lyre sublime heartrending songs, he looks no
more save upon Heaven, he weeps, he prays, and Eurydice opens her eyes
... Unhappy one, do not look at her! sing! sing! do not scare away the
butterfly of Psyche, which is about to alight on this flower!  But the
insensate man has seen the look of the woman whom he has raised from
the dead, the Grand Hierophant gives place to the lover, his lyre
falls from his hands, he looks upon Eurydice, he darts towards her,
.... he clasps her in his arms, he finds her frozen still, her eyes
are closed again, her lips are paler and colder than ever, the
sensitive soul has trembled, the frail cord is broken anew --- and for
ever. ... Eurydice is dead, and the hymns of Orpheus can no longer
recall her to life!

   In our "Dogme et rituel de la haute magie," we had the temerity to
say that the resurrection of the dead is not an impossible phenomenon
even on the physical plane; and in saying that, we have not denied or
in any way contradicted the fatal law of death.  A death which can
discontinue is only lethargy and slumber; but it is by lethargy and
slumber that {122} death always begins.  The state of profound peace
which succeeds the agitations of life carries away the relaxed and
sleeping soul; one cannot make it return, and force it to plunge anew
into life, except by exciting violently all its affections and all its
desires.  When Jesus, the Saviour of the world, was upon earth, the
earth was more beautiful and more desirable than Heaven; and yet it
was necessary for Jesus to cry aloud and apply a shock in order to
awaken Jairus's daughter.  It was by dint of shudderings and tears
that he called back his friend Lazarus from the tomb, so difficult is
it to interrupt a tired soul who is sleeping his beauty-sleep!

   At the same time, the countenance of death has not the same
serenity for every soul that contemplates it.  When one has missed the
goal of life, when one carries away with one frenzied greeds or
unassuaged hates, eternity appears to the ignorant or guilty soul with
such a formidable proportion of sorrows, that it sometimes tries to
fling itself back into mortal life.  How many souls, urged by the
nightmare of hell, have taken refuge in their frozen bodies, their
bodies already covered with funereal marble!  Men have found skeletons
turned over, convulsed, twisted, and they have said, "Here are men who
have been buried alive."  Often this was not the case.  These may
always be waifs of death, men raised from the tomb, who, before they
could abandon themselves altogether to the anguish of the threshold of
eternity, were obliged to make a second attempt.

   A celebrated magnetist, Baron Dupotet, teaches in his secret book
on "Magic" that one can kill by magic as by electricity.  There is
nothing strange in this revelation for {123} anyone who is well
acquainted with the analogies of Nature.  It is certain that in
diluting beyond measure, or in coagulating suddenly, the plastic
medium of a subject, it is possible to loose the body from the soul. 
It is sometimes sufficient to arouse a violent anger, or an
overmastering fear in anyone, to kill him suddenly.

   The habitual use of magnetism usually puts the subject who abandons
himself to it at the mercy of the magnetizer.  When communication is
well-established, and the magnetizer can produce at will slumber,
insensibility, catalepsy, and so on, it will only require a little
further effort to bring on death.

   We have been told as an actual fact a story whose authenticity we
will not altogether guarantee.

   We are about to repeat it because it may be true.

   Certain persons who doubted both religion and magnetism, of that
incredulous class which is ready for all superstitions and all
fanaticisms, had persuaded a poor girl to submit to their experiments
for a fee.  This girl was of an impressionable and nervous nature,
fatigued moreover by the excesses of a life which had been more than
irregular, while she was already disgusted with existence.  They put
her to sleep; bade her see; she weeps and struggles.  They speak to
her of God; she trembles in every limb.

   "No," said she, "no;" He frightens me; I will not look at Him."

   "Look at Him, I wish it."

   She opens her eyes, her pupils expand; she is terrifying.

   "What do you see?"

   "I should not know how to say it. ... Oh for pity's sake awaken
me!" {124}

   "No, look, and say what you see."

   "I see a black night in which whirl sparks of every colour around
two great ever-rolling eyes.  From these eyes leap rays whose spiral
whorls fill space. ... Ho, it hurts me!  Wake me!"

   "No, look."

   "Where do you wish me to look now?"

   "Look into Paradise."

   "No, I cannot climb there; the great night pushes me back, I always
fall back."

   "Very well then, look into hell."

   Here the sleep-waker became convulsively agitated.

   "No, no!" she cried sobbing; "I will not!  I shall be giddy; I
should fall!  Oh, hold me back!  Hold me back!"

  "No, descend."

   "Where do you want me to descend?"

   "Into hell."

   "But it is horrible!  No!  No!  I will not go there!"

   "Go there."


   "Go there. It is my will."

   The features of the sleep-waker become terrible to behold; her hair
stands on end; her wide-opened eyes show only the white; her breast
heaves, and a sort of death-rattle escapes from her throat.

   "Go there.  It is my will," repeats the magnetizer.

   "I am there!" says the unhappy girl between her teeth, falling back
exhausted.  Then she no longer answers; her head hangs heavy on her
shoulder; her arms fall idly by her side.  They approach her.  They
touch her.  They try to {125} waken her, but it is too late; the crime
was accomplished; the woman was dead.  It was to the public
incredulity in the matter of magnetism that the authors of this
sacrilegious experiment owed their own immunity from prosecution.  The
authorities held an inquest, and death was attributed to the rupture
of an aneurism.  The body, anyhow, bore no trace of violence; they had
it buried, and there was an end of the matter.

   Here is another anecdote which we heard from a travelling

   Two friends were staying in the same inn, and sharing the same
room. One of them had a habit of talking in his sleep, and, at that
time, would answer the questions which his comrade put to him.  One
night, he suddenly uttered stifled cries; his companion woke up and
asked him what was the matter.

   "But, don't you see," said the sleeper, "don't you see that
enormous stone ... it is becoming loose from the mountain ... it is
falling on me, it is going to crush me."

   "Oh, well, get out of its way!"

   "Impossible!  My feet are caught in brambles that cling ever
closer. Ah!  Help!  Help!  There is the great stone coming right upon

   "Well, there it is!" said the other laughing, throwing the pillow
at his head in order to wake him.

   A terrible cry, suddenly strangled in his throat, a convulsion, a
sigh, then nothing more.  The practical joker gets up, pulls his
comrade's arm, calls him; in his turn, he becomes frightened, he cries
out, people come with lights ... the unfortunate sleep-waker was dead.

                                CHAPTER III


   AN hallucination is an illusion produced by an irregular movement
of the astral light.

   It is, as we said previously, the admixture of the phenomena of
sleep with those of waking.

   Our plastic medium breathes in and out the astral light or vital
soul of the earth, as our body breathes in and out the terrestrial
atmosphere. Now, just as in certain places the air is impure and not
fit for breathing, in the same way, certain unusual circumstances may
make the astral light unwholesome, and not assimilable.

   The air of some places may be too bracing for some people, and suit
others perfectly; it is exactly the same with the magnetic light.

   The plastic medium is like a metallic statue always in a state of
fusion.  If the mould is defective, it becomes deformed; if the mould
breaks, it runs out.

   The mould of the plastic medium is balanced and polarized vital
force. Our body, by means of the nervous system, attracts and retains
this fugitive form of light; but local fatigue, or partial
over-excitement of the apparatus, may occasion fluidic deformities.

   These deformities partially falsify the mirror of the imagination,
and thus occasion habitual hallucinations to the static type of

   The plastic medium, made in the image and likeness of our {127}
body, of which it figures every organ in light, has a sight, touch,
hearing, smell and taste which are proper to itself; it may, when it
is over-excited, communicate them by vibrations to the nervous
apparatus in such a manner that the hallucination is complete.  The
imagination seems then to triumph over Nature itself, and produces
truly strange phenomena.  The material body, deluged with fluid, seems
to participate in the fluidic qualities, it escapes from the operation
of the laws of gravity, becomes momentarily invulnerable, and even
invisible, in a circle of persons suffering from collective
hallucination.  The convulsionaries of St. Medard, as one knows, had
their flesh torn off with red-hot pincers, had themselves felled like
oxen, and ground like corn, and crucified, without suffering any pain;
they were levitated, walked about head downwards, and ate bent pins
and digested them.

   We think we ought to recapitulate here the remarks which we
published in the "Estafette" on the prodigies produced by the American
medium Home, and on several phenomena of the same kind.

   We have never personally witnessed Mr. Home's miracles, but our
information comes from the best sources; we gathered it in a house
where the American medium had been received with kindness when he was
in misfortune, and with indulgence when he reached the point of
thinking that his illness was a piece of good luck; in the house of a
lady born in Poland, but thrice French by the nobility of her heart,
the indescribable charm of her spirit, and the European celebrity of
her name.

   The publication of this information in the "Estafette" attracted to
us at that time, without our particularly knowing {128} why, the
insults of a Mr. de Pene, since then become known to fame through his
unfortunate duel.  We thought at the time of La Fontaine's fable about
the fool who threw stones at the sage.  Mr. de Pene spoke of us as an
unfrocked priest, and a bad Catholic.  We at least showed ourself a
good Christian in pitying and forgiving him, and as it is impossible
to be an unfrocked priest without ever having been a priest, we let
fall to the ground an insult which did not reach us.

                             SPOOKS IN PARIS.

   Mr. Home, a week ago, was once more about to quit Paris, that Paris
where even the angels and the demons, if they appeared in any shape,
would not pass very long for marvellous beings, and would find nothing
better to do than to return at top-speed to heaven or to hell, to
escape the forgetfulness and the neglect of human kind.

   Mr. Home, his air sad and disillusioned, was then bidding farewell
to a noble lady whose kindly welcome had been one of the first
happiness which he had tasted in France.  Mme. de B... treated him
very kindly that day, as always, and asked him to stay to dinner; the
man of mystery was about to accept, when, some one having just said
that they were waiting for a qabalist, well known in the world of
occult science by the publication of a book entitled "Dogme et rituel
de la haute magie," Mr. Home suddenly changed countenance, and said,
stammering, and with a visible embarrassment, that he could not
remain, and that the approach of this Professor of Magic caused him an
incomparable terror.  Everything one could say to reassure him proved
useless.  "I do not presume to judge the man," said he; "I do not
{129} assert that he is good or evil, I know nothing about it; but his
atmosphere hurts me; near him I should feel myself, as it were,
without force, even without life."  After which explanation.  Mr. Home
hastened to salute and withdraw.

   This terror of miracle-mongers in the presence of the veritable
initiates of science, is not a new fact in the annals of occultism. 
You may read in Philostratus the history of the Lamia who trembles on
hearing the approach of Apollonius of Tyana.  Our admirable
story-teller Alexander Dumas dramatized this magical anecdote in the
magnificent epitome of all legends which forms the prologue to his
great epic novel, "The Wandering Jew."<> The scene takes place at
Corinth; it is an old-time wedding with its beautiful children crowned
with flowers, bearing the nuptial torches, and singing gracious
epithalamia flowered with voluptuous images like the poems of
Catullus.  The bride is as beautiful in her chaste draperies as the
ancient Polyhumnia; she is amorous and deliciously provoking in her
modesty, like a Venus of Correggio, or a Grace of Canova.  The
bridegroom is Clinias, a disciple of the famous Apollonius of Tyana. 
The master had promised to come to his disciple's wedding, but he does
not arrive, and the fair bride breathes easier, for she fears
Apollonius.  However, the day is not over.  The hour has arrived when
the newly married are to be conducted to the nuptial couch.  Meroe
trembles, pales, looks obstinately towards the door, stretches out her
hand with alarm and says in a strangled voice: "Here he is!  It is
he!"  It was in fact Apollonius.  Here is the magus; here is the
master; the hour of enchantments has passed; jugglery falls before
true {130} science.  One seeks the lovely bride, the white Meroe, and
one sees no more than an old woman, the sorceress Canidia, the
devourer of little children.  Clinias is disabused; he thanks his
master, he is saved.

   The vulgar are always deceived about magic, and confuse adepts with
enchanters.  True magic, that is to say, the traditional science of
the magi, is the mortal enemy of enchantment; it prevents, or makes to
cease, sham miracles, hostile to the light, that fascinate a small
number of prejudiced or credulous witnesses.  The apparent disorder in
the laws of Nature is a lie: it is not then a miracle.  The true
miracle, the true prodigy always flaming in the eyes of all, is the
ever constant harmony of effect and cause; these are the splendours of
eternal order!

   We could not say whether Cagliostro would have performed miracles
in the presence of Swedenborg; but he would certainly have dreaded the
presence of Paracelsus and of Henry Khunrath, if these great men had
been his contemporaries.

   Far be it from us, however, to denounce Mr. Home as a low-class
sorcerer, that is to say, as a charlatan.  The celebrated American
medium is sweet and natural as a child.  He is a poor and
over-sensitive being, without cunning and without defence; he is the
plaything of a terrible force of whose nature he is ignorant, and the
first of his dupes is certainly himself.

   The study of the strange phenomena which are produced in the
neighbourhood of this young man is of the greatest importance.  One
must seriously reconsider the too easy denials of the eighteenth
century, and open out before {131} science and reason broader horizons
than those of a bourgeois criticism, which denies everything which it
does not yet know how to explain to itself.  Facts are inexorable, and
genuine good faith should never fear to examine them.

   The explanation of these facts, which all traditions obstinately
affirm, and which are reproduced before our eyes with tiresome
publicity, this explanation, ancient as the facts themselves, rigorous
as mathematics, but drawn for the first time from the shadows in which
the hierophants of all ages have hidden it, would be a great
scientific event if it could obtain sufficient light and publicity. 
This event we are perhaps about to prepare, for one would not permit
us the audacious hope of accomplishing it.

   Here, in the first place, are the facts, in all their singularity. 
We have verified them, and we have established them with a rigorous
exactitude, abstaining in the first place from all explanation and all

   Mr. Home is subject to trances which put him, according to his own
account, in direct communication with the soul of his mother, and,
through her, with the entire world of spirits.  He describes, like the
sleep-wakers of Cahagnet, persons whom he has never seen, and who are
recognized by those who evoke them; he will tell you even their names,
and will reply, on their behalf, to questions which can be understood
only by the soul evoked and yourselves.

   When he is in a room, inexplicable noises make themselves heard. 
Violent blows resound upon the furniture, and in the walls; sometimes
doors and windows open by themselves, as if they were blown open by a
storm; one even hears the wind and the rain, though when one goes out
of doors, the sky {132} is cloudless, and one does not feel the
lightest breath of wind.

   The furniture is overturned and displace, without anybody touching

   Pencils write of their own accord.  Their writing is that of Mr.
Home, and they make the same mistakes as he does.

   Those present feel themselves touched and seized by invisible
hands. These contacts, which seem to select ladies, lack a serious
side, and sometimes even propriety.  We think that we shall be
sufficiently understood.

   Visible and tangible hands come out, or seem to come out, of
tables; but in this case, the tables must be covered.  The invisible
agent needs certain apparatus, just as do the cleverest successors of
Robert Houdin.

   These hands show themselves above all in darkness; they are warm
and phosphorescent, or cold and black.  They write stupidities, or
touch the piano; and when they have touched the piano, it is necessary
to send for the tuner, their contact being always fatal to the
exactitude of the instrument.

   One of the most considerable personages in England, Sir Bulwer
Lytton, has seen and touched those hands; we have read his written and
signed attestation.  He declares even that he has seized them, and
drawn them towards himself with all his strength, in order to withdraw
from their incognito the arm to which they should naturally be
attached.  But the invisible object has proved stronger than the
English novelist, and the hands have escaped him.

   A Russian nobleman who was the protector of Mr. Home, and whose
character and good faith could not possibly be doubted, Count A.
B------, has also seen and seized with {133} vigor the mysterious
hands.  "They are," says he, "perfect shapes of human hands, warm and
living, only one feels no bones."  Pressed by an unavoidable
constraint, those hands did not struggle to escape, but grew smaller,
and in some way melted, so that the Count ended by no longer holding

   Other persons who have seen them, and touched them, say that the
fingers are puffed out and stiff, and compare them to gloves of
india-rubber, swollen with a warm and phosphorescent air.  Sometimes,
instead of hands, it is feet which produce themselves, but never
naked.  The spirit, which probably lacks footwear, respects (at least
in this particular) the delicacy of ladies, and never shows his feet
but under a drapery or a cloth.

   The production of these feet very much tires and frightens Mr.
Home.  He then endeavours to approach some healthy person, and seizes
him like a drowning man; the person so seized by the medium feels
himself, on a sudden, in a singular state of exhaustion and debility.

   A Polish gentleman, who was present at one of the "seances" of Mr.
Home, had placed on the ground between his feet a pencil on a paper,
and had asked for a sign of the presence of the spirit.  For some
instants nothing stirred, but suddenly, the pencil was thrown to the
other end of the room.  The gentleman stooped, took the paper, and saw
there three qabalistic signs which nobody understood.  Mr. Home
(alone) appeared, on seeing them, to be very much upset, and even
frightened; but he refused to explain himself as to the nature and
significance of these characters.  The investigators accordingly kept
them, and took them to that Professor of High {134} Magic whose
approach had been so much dreaded by the medium.  We have seen them,
and here is a minute description of them.

   They were traced forcibly, and the pencil had almost cut the paper.

   They had been dashed on to the paper without order or alignment.

   The first was the symbol which the Egyptian initiates usually
placed in the hand of Typhon.  A tau with upright double lines opened
in the form of a compass; an ankh (or crux ansata) having at the top a
circular ring; below the ring, a double horizontal line; beneath the
double horizontal line, two oblique lines, like a V upside down.

   The second character represented a Grand Hierophant's cross, with
the three hierarchical cross-bars.  This symbol, which dates from the
remotest antiquity, is still the attribute of our sovereign pontiffs,
and forms the upper extremity of their pastoral staff.  But the sign
traced by the pencil had this particularity, that the upper branch,
the head of the cross, was double, and formed again the terrible
Typhonian V, the sign of antagonism and separation, the symbol of hate
and eternal combat.

   The third character was that which Freemasons call the
Philosophical Cross, a cross with four equal arms, with a point in
each of its angles.  But, instead of four points, there were only two,
placed in the two right-hand corners, once more a sign of struggle,
separation and denial.

   The Professor, whom one will allow us to distinguish from the
narrator, and to name in the third person in order not to weary our
readers in having the air of speaking of {135} ourself --- the
Professor, then, Master Eliphas Levi, gave the persons assembled in
Mme. de B------'s drawing-room the scientific explanation of the three
signatures, and this is what he said:

   "These three signs belong to the series of sacred and primitive
hieroglyphs, known only to initiates of the first order.  The first is
the signature of Typhon.  It expresses the blasphemy of the evil
spirit by establishing dualism in the creative principle.  For the
crux ansata of Osiris is a lingam upside down, and represents the
paternal and active force of God (the vertical line extending from the
circle) fertilizing passive nature (the horizontal line).  To double
the vertical line is to affirm that nature has two fathers; it is to
put adultery in the place of the divine motherhood, it is to affirm,
instead of the principle of intelligence, blind fatality, which has
for result the eternal conflict of appearances in nothingness; it is,
then, the most ancient, the most authentic, and the most terrible of
all the stigmata of hell.  It signifies the "atheistic god"; it is the
signature of Satan.

   "This first signature is hieratical, and bears reference to the
occult characters of the divine world.

   "The second pertains to philosophical hieroglyphs, it represents
the graduated extent of idea, and the progressive extension of form.

   "It is a triple tau upside down; it is human thought affirming the
absolute in the three worlds, and that absolute ends here by a fork,
that is to say, by the sign of doubt and antagonism.  So that, if the
first character means: 'There is no God,' the rigorous signification
of this one is: 'Hierarchical truth does not exist.' {136}

   "The third or philosophical cross has been in all initiations the
symbol of Nature, and its four elementary forms.  The four points
represent the four indicible an incommunicable letters of the occult
tetragram, that eternal formula of the Great Arcanum, G.'. A.'.

   "The two points on the right represent force, as those on the left
symbolize love, and the four letters should be read from right to
left, beginning by the right-hand upper corner, and going thence to
the left-hand lower corner, and so for the others, making the cross of
St. Andrew.

   "The suppression of the two left-hand points expresses the negation
of the cross, the negation of mercy and of love.

   "The affirmation of the absolute reign of force, and its eternal
antagonism, from above to beneath, and from beneath to above.

   "The glorification of tyranny and of revolt.

   "The hieroglyphic sign of the unclean rite, with which, rightly or
wrongly, the Templars were reproached; it is the sign of disorder and
of eternal despair."

   Such, then, are the first revelations of the hidden science of the
magi with regard to these phenomena of supernatural manifestations. 
Now let it be permitted to us to compare with these strange signatures
other contemporary apparitions of phenomenal writings, for it is
really a brief which science ought to study before taking it to the
tribunal of public opinion.  One must then despise no research,
overlook no clue.

   In the neighbourhood of Caen, at Tilly-sur-Seulles, a series of
inexplicable facts occurred some years ago, under the influence of a
medium, or ecstatic, named Eugene Vintras.  {137}

   Certain ridiculous circumstances and a prosecution for swindling
soon caused this thaumaturgist to fall into oblivion, and even into
contempt; he had, moreover, been attacked with violence in pamphlets
whose authors had at one time been admirers of his doctrine, for the
medium Vintras took it upon himself to dogmatize.  One thing, however,
is remarkable in the invectives of which he is the object: his
adversaries, though straining every effort in order to scourge him,
recognize the truth of his miracles, and content themselves with
attributing them to the devil.

   What, then, are these so authentic miracles of Vintras?  On this
subject we are better informed than anybody, as will soon appear. 
Affidavits signed by honourable witnesses, persons who are artists,
doctors, priests, all men above reproach, have been communicated to
us; we have questioned eye-witnesses, and, better than that, we have
seen with our own eyes.  The facts deserve to be described in detail.

   There is in Paris a writer named Mr. Madrolle, who is, to say the
least of it, a bit eccentric.  He is an old man of good family.  He
wrote at first on behalf of Catholicism in the most exalted way,
received most flattering encouragements from ecclesiastical authority,
and even letters from the Holy See.  Then he saw Vintras; and, led
away by the prestige of his miracles, became a determined sectarian,
and an irreconcilable enemy of the hierarchy and of the clergy.

   At the period when Eliphas Levi was publishing his "Dogme et rituel
de la haute magie," he received a pamphlet from Mr. Madrolle which
astonished him. In it, the author vigorously sustained the most
unheard of paradoxes in the disordered style of the ecstatics.  For
him, life sufficed for {138} the expiation of the greatest crimes,
since it was the consequence of a sentence of death.  The most wicked
men, being the most unhappy of all, seemed to him to offer the
sublimest of expiations to God.  He broke all bounds in his attack on
all repression and all damnation.  "A religion which damns," he cried,
"is a damned religion!"  He further preached the most absolute licence
under the pretext of charity, and so far forgot himself as to say,
that "the most imperfect and the most apparently reprehensible act of
love was worth more than the best of prayers."<>  It was the
Marquis de Sade turned preacher!<>  Further, he denied the existence
of the devil with an enthusiasm often full of eloquence.

   "Can you conceive," said he, "a devil tolerated and authorized by
God? Can you conceive, further, a God who made the devil, and who
allowed him to ravage creatures already so weak, and so prompt to
deceive themselves!  A god of the devil, in short, abetted, protected,
and scarcely surpassed in his revenges, by a devil of a god!"  The
rest of the pamphlet was of the same vigour.  The Professor of Magic
was almost frightened, and inquired the address of Mr. Madrolle.  It
was not without some trouble that he obtained an interview with this
singular pamphleteer, and here is, more or less, their conversation:

   ELIPHAS LEVI.  "Sir, I have received a pamphlet from you.  {139} I
am come to thank you for your gift, and, at the same time, to testify
to my astonishment and disappointment."

  MR. MADROLLE.  "Your disappointment, sir!  Pray explain yourself, I
do not understand you."

   "It is a lively regret to me, sir, to see you make mistakes which I
have myself at one time made.  But I had then, at least, the excuse of
inexperience and youth.  Your pamphlet lacks conviction, because it
lacks discrimination.  Your intention was doubtless to protest against
errors in belief, and abuses in morality: and behold, it is the belief
and the morality themselves that you attack!  The exaltation which
overflows in your pamphlet may indeed do you the greatest harm, and
some of your best friends must have experienced anxiety with regard to
the state of your health. ..."

   "Oh, no doubt; they have said, and say still, that I am mad.  But
it is nothing new that believers must undergo the folly of the cross. 
I am exalted, sir, because you yourself would be so in my place,
because it is impossible to remain calm in the presence of prodigies.

   "Oh, oh, you speak of prodigies, that interests me.  Come, between
ourselves, and in all good faith, of what prodigies are you speaking?"

   "Eh, what prodigies should they be but those of the great prophet
Elias, returned to earth under the name of Pierre Michel?"

   "I understand; you mean Eugene Vintras.  I have heard his
prophecies spoken of.  But does he really perform miracles?"

   ["Here Mr. Madrolle jumps in his chair, raises his eyes and his
hands to heaven, and finally smiles with a condescension which seems
to sound the depths of pity."] {140}

   "Does he do miracles, sir?

   "But the greatest!

   "The most astonishing!

   "The most incontestable!

   "The truest miracles that have ever been done on earth since the
time of Jesus Christ! ... What!  Thousands of hosts appear on altars
where there were none; wine appears in empty chalices, and it is not
an illusion, it is wine, a delicious wine ....celestial music is
heard, perfumes of the world beyond fill the room, and then blood ....
real human blood (doctors have examined it!), real blood, I tell you,
sweats and sometimes flows from the hosts, imprinting mysterious
characters on the altars!  I am talking to you of what I have seen, of
what I have heard, of what I have touched, of what I have tasted!  And
you want me to remain cold at the bidding of an ecclesiastical
authority which finds it more convenient to deny everything than to
examine the least thing!..."

   "By permission, sir; it is in religious matters, above all, that
authority can never by wrong. ...  In religion, good is hierarchy, and
evil is anarchy; to what would the influence of the priesthood be
reduced, in effect, if you set up the principle that one must rather
believe the testimony of one's senses than the decision of the Church?
 Is not the Church more visible than all your miracles?  Those who see
miracles and who do not see the Church are much more to be pitied than
the blind, for there remains to them not even the resource of allowing
themselves to be led. ..."

   "Sir, I know all that as well as you do.  But God cannot be divided
against Himself.  He cannot allow good faith to be deceived, and the
Church itself could hardly decide that {141} I am blind when I have
eyes. ... Here, see what John Huss says in his letter, the forty-third
letter, towards the end:

   "'A doctor of theology said to me: "In everything I should submit
myself to the Council; everything would then be good and lawful for
me."  He added: "If the Council said that you had only one eye,
although you have two, it would be still necessary to admit that the
Council was not wrong." "Were the whole world," I replied, "to affirm
such a thing, so long as I had the use of my reason, I should not be
able to agree without wounding my conscience."'  I will say to you,
like John Huss, 'Before there were a Church and its councils there
were truth and reason.'"

   "Pardon me if I interrupt, my dear sir; you were a Catholic at one
time, you are no longer so; consciences are free.  I shall merely
submit to you that the institution of the hierarchical infallibility
in matters of dogma is reasonable in quite another sense, and far more
incontestably true than all the miracles of the world.  Besides, what
sacrifices ought one not to make in order to preserve peace!  Believe
me, John Huss would have been a greater man if he had sacrificed one
of his eyes to universal concord, rather than deluge Europe with
blood!  O sir! let the Church decide when she will that I have but one
eye; I only ask her one favour, it is to tell me in which eye I am
blind, in order that I may close it and look with the other with an
irreproachable orthodoxy!"

   "I admit that I am not orthodox in your fashion."

   "I perceive that clearly.  But let us come to the miracles!  You
have then seen, touched, felt, tasted them; but, come, putting
exaltation on one side, please give me a thoroughly detailed and
circumstantial account of the affair, and, above {142} all, evident
proof of miracle.  Am I indiscreet in asking you that?"

   "Not the least in the world; but which shall I choose?  There are
so many!"

   "Let me think," added Mr. Madrolle, after a moment's reflection and
with a slight trembling in the voice, "the prophet is in London, and
we are here.  Eh! well, if you only make a mental request to the
prophet to send you immediately the communion, and if in a place
designated by you, in your own house, in a cloth, or in a book, you
found a host on your return, what would you say?"

   "I should declare the fact inexplicable by ordinary critical

   "Oh, well, sir," cried Mr. Madrolle, triumphantly, "there is a
thing that often happens to me; whenever I wish, that is to say,
whenever I am prepared and hope humbly to be worthy of it!  Yes, sir,
I find the host when I ask for it; I find it real and palpable, but
often ornamented with little hearts, little miraculous hearts, which
one might think had been painted by Raphael."

   Eliphas Levi, who felt ill at ease in discussing facts with which
there was mingled a sort of profanation of the most holy things, then
took his leave of the one-time Catholic writer, and went out
meditating on the strange influence of this Vintras, who had so
overthrown that old belief, and turned the old savant's head.

   Some days afterwards, the qabalist Eliphas was awakened very early
in the morning by an unknown visitor.  It was a man with white hair,
entirely clothed in black; his physiognomy {143} that of an extremely
devout priest; his whole air, in short, was entirely worthy of

   This ecclesiastic was furnished with a letter of recommendation
conceived in these terms:


       "This is to introduce to you an old savant, who wants to gabble
Hebrew sorcery with you.  Receive him like myself --- I mean as I
myself received him --- by getting rid of him in the best way you can.

        "Entirely yours, in the sacrosanct Qabalah,

                                "AD. DESBARROLLES."

   "Reverend sir," said Eliphas, smiling, after having read the
letter.  "I am entirely at your service, and can refuse nothing to the
friend who writes to me.  You have then seen my excellent disciple

   "Yes, sir, and I have found in him a very amiable and very learned
man. I think both you and him worthy of the truth which has been
lately revealed by astonishing miracles, and the positive revelations
of the Archangel St. Michael."

   "Sir, you do us honour.  Has then the good Desbarrolles astonished
you by his science?"

   "Oh, certainly he possesses in a very remarkable degree the secrets
of cheiromancy; by merely inspecting my hand, he told me nearly the
whole history of my life."

   "He is quite capable of that.  But did he enter into the smallest

   "Sufficiently, sir, to convince me of his extraordinary power."

   "Did he tell you that you were once the vicar of {144} Mont-Louis,
in the diocese of Tours?  That you are the most zealous disciple of
the ecstatic Eugene Vintras?  And that your name is Charvoz?"

   It was a veritable thunderbolt; at each of these three phrases the
old priest jumped in his chair.  When he heard his name, he turned
pale, and rose as if a spring had been released.

   "You are then really a magician?" he cried; "Charvoz is certainly
my name, but it is not that which I bear; I call myself La Paraz."

   "I know it; La Paraz is the name of your mother.  You have left a
sufficiently enviable position, that of a country vicar, and your
charming vicarage, in order to share the troubled existence of a

   "Say of a great prophet!"

   "Sir, I believe perfectly in your good faith.  But you will permit
me to examine a little the mission and the character of your prophet."

   "Yes, sir; examination, full light, the microscope of science, that
is all we ask.  Come to London, sir, and you will see!  The miracles
are permanently established there."

   "Would you be so kind, sir, as to give me, first of all, some exact
and conscientious details with regard to the miracles?"

   "Oh, as many as you like!"

   And immediately the old priest began to recount things which the
whole world would have found impossible, but which did not even turn a
eye-lash of the Professor of Transcendental Magic. {145}

   Here is one of his stories:

   One day Vintras, in an access of enthusiasm, was preaching before
his heterodox altar; twenty-five persons were present.  An empty
chalice was upon the altar, a chalice well known to the Abbe Charvoz;
he brought it himself from his church of Mont-Louis, and he was
perfectly certain that the sacred vase had neither secret ducts nor
double bottom.

   "'In order to prove to you,' said Vintras, 'that it is God Himself
who inspires me, He acquaints me that this chalice will fill itself
with drops of His blood, under the appearance of wine, and you will
all be able to taste the fruit of the vines of the future, the wine
which we shall drink with the Saviour in the Kingdom of His Father...'

   "Overcome with astonishment and fear," continued the Abbe Charvoz,
"I go up to the altar, I take the chalice, I look at the bottom of it:
it was entirely empty.  I overturned it in the sight of everyone, then
I returned to kneel at the foot of the altar, holding the chalice
between my two hands...  Suddenly there was a slight noise; the noise
of a drop of water, falling into the chalice from the ceiling, was
distinctly heard, and a drop of wine appeared at the bottom of the

   "Every eye was fixed on me.  Then they looked at the ceiling, for
our simple chapel was held in a poor room; in the ceiling was neither
hole nor fissure; nothing was seen to fall, and yet the noise of the
fall of the drops multiplied, it became more rapid, and more frequent,
.. and the wine climbed from the bottom of the chalice towards the

   "When the chalice was full, I bore it slowly around so that all
might see it; then the prophet dipped his lips into it, and all, one
after the other, tasted the miraculous wine.  It is in {146} vain to
search memory for any delicious taste which would gave an idea of
it...  And what shall I tell you," added the Abbe Charvoz, "of those
miracles of blood which astonish us every day?  Thousands of wounded
and bleeding hosts are found upon our altars.  The sacred stigmata
appear to all who wish to see them.  The hosts, at first white, slowly
become marked with characters and hearts in blood. ...  Must one
believe that God abandons the holiest objects to the false miracles of
the devil?  Should not one rather adore, and believe that the hour of
the supreme and final revelation has arrived?"

   Abbe Charvoz, as he thus spoke, had in his voice that sort of
nervous trembling that Eliphas Levi had already noticed in the case of
Mr. Madrolle.  The magician shook his head pensively; then, suddenly:

   "Sir," said he to the Abbe; "you have upon you one or two of these
miraculous hosts.  Be good enough to show them to me."


   "You have some, I know it; why should you deny it?"

   "I do not deny it," said Abbe Charvoz; "but you will permit me not
to expose to the investigations of incredulity objects of the most
sincere and devout belief."

   "Reverend sir," said Eliphas gravely; "incredulity is the mistrust
of an ignorance almost sure to deceive itself.  Science is not
incredulous.  I believe, to begin with, in you own conviction, since
you have accepted a life of privation and even of reproach, in order
to stick to this unhappy belief.  Show me then your miraculous hosts,
and believe entirely in my respect for the objects of a sincere
worship." {147}

   "Oh, well!" said the Abbe Charvoz, after another slight hesitation;
"I will show them to you."

   Then he unbuttoned the top of his black waistcoat and drew forth a
little reliquary of silver, before which he fell on his knees, with
tears in his eyes, and prayers on his lips; Eliphas fell on his knees
beside him, and the Abbe opened the reliquary.

   There were in the reliquary three hosts, one whole, the two others
almost like paste, and as it were kneaded with blood.

   The whole host bore in its centre a heart in relief on both sides;
a clot of blood moulded in the form of a heart, which seemed to have
been formed in the host itself in an inexplicable manner.  The blood
could not have been applied from without, for the imbibed colouring
matter had left the particles adhering to the exterior surface quite
white.  The appearance of the phenomenon was the same on both sides. 
The Master of Magic was seized with an involuntary trembling.

   This emotion did not escape the old vicar, who having once again
done adoration and closed his reliquary, drew from his pocket an
album, and gave it without a word to Eliphas. ...   There were copies
of all the bleeding characters which had been observed upon hosts
since the beginning of the ecstasies and miracles of Vintras.

   There were hearts of every kind, and many different sorts of
emblems. But three especially excited the curiosity of Eliphas to the
highest point.

   "Reverend sir," said he to Charvoz, "do you know these three

   "No," replied the Abbe ingenuously; "but the prophet assures us
that they are of the highest importance, and that {148} their hidden
signification shall soon be made known, that is to say, at the end of
the Age."

   "Oh, well, sir," solemnly replied the Professor of Magic; "even
before the end of the Age, I will explain them to you; these three
qabalistic signs are the signature of the devil!"

   "It is impossible!" cried the old priest.

   "It is the case," replied Eliphas, with determination.

   Now, the signs were these:

   1 Degree. --- The star of the micrososm, or the magic pentagram. 
It is the five-pointed star of occult masonry, the star with which
Agrippa drew the human figure, the head in the upper point, the four
limbs in the four others.  The flaming star, which, when turned upside
down, is the hierolgyphic sign of the goat of Black Magic, whose head
may then be drawn in the star, the two horns at the top, the ears to
the right and left, the beard at the bottom.  It is the sign of
antagonism and fatality.  It is the goat of lust attacking the heavens
with its horns.  It is a sign execrated by initiates of a superior
rank, even at the Sabbath.<>

   2 Degree. --- The two hermetic serpents.  But the heads and tails,
instead of coming together in two similar semicircles, were turned
outwards, and there was no intermediate line representing the
caduceus.  Above the head of the serpents, one saw the fatal V, the
Typhonian fork, the character of hell. To the right and left, the
sacred numbers III and VII were relegated to the horizontal line which
represents passive and secondary things.  The meaning of the character
was then this:

   Antagonism is eternal. {149}

   God is the strife of fatal forces, which always create through

   The things of religion are passive and transitory.

   Boldness makes use of them, war profits by them, and it is by them
that discord is perpetuated.

   3 Degree. --- Finally, the qabalistic monogram of Jehovah, the JOD
and the HE, but upside down.  This is, according to the doctors of
occult science, the most frightful of all blasphemies, and signifies,
however one may read it, "Fatality alone exists: God and the Spirit
are not.  Matter is all, and spirit is only a fiction of this matter
demented.  Form is more than idea, woman more than man, pleasure more
than thought, vice more than virtue, the mob more than its chiefs, the
children more than their fathers, folly more than reason!"

   There is what was written in characters of blood upon the pretended
miraculous hosts of Vintras!

   We affirm upon our honour that the facts cited above are such as we
have stated, and that we ourselves saw and explained the characters
according to magical science and the true keys of the Qabalah.

   The disciple of Vintras also communicated to us the description and
design of the pontifical vestments given, said he, by Jesus Christ
Himself to the pretended prophet, during one of his ecstatic trances. 
Vintras had these vestments made, and clothes himself with them in
order to perform his miracles.  They are red in colour.  He wears upon
his forehead a cross in the  form of a lingam; and his pastoral staff
is surmounted by a hand, all of whose fingers are closed, except the
thumb and the little finger.

   Now, all that is diabolical in the highest degree.  And is {150} it
not a really wonderful thing, this intuition of the signs of a lost
science? For it is transcendental magic which, basing the universe
upon the two columns of Hermes and of Solomon, has divided the
metaphysical world into two intellectual zones, one white and
luminous, enclosing positive ideas, the other black and obscure,
containing negative ideas, and which has given to the synthesis of the
first, the name of God, and to that of the other, the name of the
devil or of Satan.

   The sign of the lingam borne upon the forehead is in India the
distinguishing mark of the worshippers of Shiva the destroyer; for
that sign being that of the great magical arcanum, which refers to the
mystery of universal generation, to bear it on the forehead is to make
profession of dogmatic shamelessness.  "Now," say the Orientals, "the
day when there is no longer modesty in the world, the world, given
over to debauch which is sterile, will end at once for lack of
mothers.  Modesty is the acceptance of maternity."

   The hand with the three large fingers closed expresses the negation
of the ternary, and the affirmation of the natural forces alone.

   The ancient hierophants, as our learned and witty friend
Desbarolles is about to explain in an admirable book which is at
present in the press, had given a complete "resume" of magical science
in the human hand.  The forefinger, for them, represented Jupiter; the
middle finger, Saturn; the ring-finger, Apollo or the Sun.  Among the
Egyptians, the middle finger was Ops, the forefinger Osiris, and the
little finger Horus; the thumb represented the generative force,and
the little finger, cunning.  A hand, showing only the thumb and {151}
the little finger, is equivalent, in the sacred hieroglyphic language,
to the exclusive affirmation of passion and diplomacy.  It is the
perverted and material translation of that great word of St.
Augustine: "Love, and do what you will!"  Compare now this sign with
the doctrine of Mr. Madrolle: "The most imperfect and the most
apparently guilty act of love is worth more than the best of prayers."
 And you will ask yourself what is that force which, independently of
the will, and of the greater or less knowledge of man (for Vintras is
a man of no education), formulates its dogmas with signs buried in the
rubbish of the ancient world, re-discovers the mysteries of Thebes and
of Eleusis, and writes for us the most learned reveries of India with
the occult alphabets of Hermes?

   What is that force?  I will tell you.  But I have still plenty of
other miracles to tell; and this article is like a judicial
investigation.  We must, before anything else, complete it.

   However, we may be permitted, before proceeding to other accounts
to transcribe here a page from a German "illumine," of the work of
Ludwig Tieck:

   "If, for example, as an ancient tradition informs us, some of the
angels whom God had created fell all too soon, and if these, as they
also say, were precisely the most brilliant of the angels, one may
very well understand by this 'fall' that they sought a new road, a new
form of activity, other occupations, and another life than those
orthodox or more passive spirits who remained in the realm assigned to
them, and made no use of liberty, the appanage of all of them.  Their
'fall' was that weight of form which we now-a-days call reality, and
which is a protest on the part of individual existence against {152}
its reabsorption into the abysses of universal spirit.  It is thus
that death preserves and reproduces life, it is thus that life is
betrothed to death. ...  Do you understand now what Lucifer is?  "Is
it not the very genius of ancient Prometheus," that force which sets
in motion the world, life, even movement, and which regulates the
course of successive forms?  This force, by its resistance,
equilibrated the creative principle.  It is thus that the Elohim gave
birth to the earth.  When, subsequently, men were placed upon the
earth by the Lord, as intermediate spirits, in their enthusiasm, which
led them to search Nature in its depths, they gave themselves over to
the influence of that proud and powerful genius, and when they were
softly ravished away over the precipice of death to find life, there
it was that they began to exist in a real and natural manner, as is
fit for all creatures."

   This page needs no commentary, and explains sufficiently the
tendencies of what one calls spiritualism, or "spiritism."

   It is already a long time since this doctrine, or, rather, this
antidoctrine, began to work upon the world, to plunge it into
universal anarchy.  But the law of equilibrium will save us, and
already the great movement of reaction has begun.

   We continue the recital of the phenomena.

   One day a workman paid a visit to Eliphas Levi.  He was a tall man
of some fifty years old, of frank appearance, and speaking in a very
reasonable manner.  Questioned as to the motive of his visit, he
replied: "You ought to know it well enough; I am come to beg and pray
you to return to me what I have lost."

   We must say, to be frank, that Eliphas knew nothing of {153} this
visitor, nor of what he might have lost.  He accordingly replied: "You
think me much more of a sorcerer than I am; I do not know who you are,
nor what you seek; consequently, if you think that I can be useful to
you in any way, you must explain yourself and make your request more

   "Oh, well, since you are determined not to understand me, you will
at least recognize this," said the stranger, taking from his pocket a
little, much-used black book.

   It was the "grimoire" of Pope Honorius.

   One word upon this little book so much decried.

   The "grimoire" of Honorius is composed of an apocryphal
constitution of Honorius II, for the evocation and control of spirits;
then of some superstitious receipts ... it was the manual of the bad
priests who practised Black Magic during the darkest periods of the
middle ages.  You will find there bloody rites, mingled with
profanations of the Mass and of the consecrated elements, formulae of
bewitchment and malevolent spells, and practices which stupidity alone
could credit or knavery counsel.  In fact, it is a book complete of
its kind; it is consequently become very rare, and the bibliophile
pushes it to very high prices in the public sales.

   "My dear sir," said the workman, sighing, "since I was ten years
old, I have not missed once performing the orison.  This book never
leaves me, and I comply rigorously with all the prescribed ceremonies.
 Why, then, have those who used to visit me abandoned me?  Eli, Eli,
lama ------"

   "Stop," said Eliphas, "do not parody the most formidable words that
agony ever uttered in this world!  Who are the beings who visited you
by virtue of this horrible book?  Do {154} you know them?  Have you
promised them anything?  Have you signed a pact?"

   "No," interrupted the owner of the "grimoire;" "I do not know them,
and I have entered into no agreement with them.  I only know that
among them the chiefs are good, the intermediate rank partly good and
partly evil; the inferiors bad, but blindly, and without its being
possible for them to do better.  He whom I evoked, and who has often
appeared to me, belongs to the most elevated hierarchy; for he was
good-looking, well dressed, and always gave me favourable answers. 
But I have lost a page of my "grimoire," the first, the most
important, that which bore the autograph of the spirit; and, since
then, he no longer appears when I call him.

   "I am a lost man.  I am naked as Job, I have no longer either force
or courage.  O Master, I conjure you, you who need only say one word,
make one sign, and the spirits will obey, take pity upon me, and
restore to me what I have lost!"

  "Give me your grimoire!" said Eliphas.  "What name used you to give
to the spirit who appeared to you?"

   "I called him Adonai."

   "And in what language was his signature?"

   "I do not know, but I suppose it was in Hebrew."

   "There," said the Professor of Transcendental Magic, after having
traced two words in the Hebrew language in the beginning and at the
end of the book.  "Here are two words which the spirits of darkness
will never counterfeit.  Go in peace, sleep well, and no longer evoke

   The workman withdrew.

   A week later, he returned to seek the Man of Science.  {155}

   "You have restored to me hope and life," said he; "my strength is
partially returned, I am able with the signatures that you gave me to
relieve sufferers, and cast out devils, but "him," I cannot see him
again, and, until I have seen him, I shall be sad to the day of my
death.  Formerly, he was always near me, he sometimes touched me, and
he used to wake me up in the night to tell me all that I needed to
know.  Master, I beg of you, let me see him again!"

   "See whom?"


   "Do you know who Adonai is?"

   "No, but I want to see him again."

   "Adonai is invisible."

   "I have seen him."

   "He has no form."

   "I have touched him."

   "He is infinite."

   "He is very nearly of my own height."

   "The prophets say of him that the hem of his vestment, from the
East to the West, sweeps the stars of the morning."

   "He had a very clean surcoat, and very white linen."

   "The Holy Scripture says that one cannot see him and live."

   "He had a kind and jovial face."

   "But how did you proceed in order to obtain these apparitions?"

   "Why, I did everything that it tells you to do in the "grimoire." "

   "What!  Even the bloody sacrifice?"

   "Doubtless."  {156}

   "Unhappy man!  But who, then, was the victim?"

   At this question, the workman had a slight trembling; he paled, and
his glance became troubled.

   "Master, you know better than I what it is," said he humbly in a
low voice.  "Oh, it cost me a great deal to do it; above all, the
first time, with a single blow of the magic knife to cut the throat of
that innocent creature!  One night I had just accomplished the
funereal rites, I was seated in the circle on the interior threshold
of my door, and the victim had just been consumed in a great fire of
alder and cypress wood.  ...  All of a sudden, quite close to me ....
I dreamt or rather I felt it pass ... I heard in my ear a heartrending
wail ... one would have said that it wept; and since that moment, I
think that I am hearing it always."

   Eliphas had risen; he looked fixedly upon his interlocutor.  Had he
before him a dangerous madman, capable of renewing the atrocities of
the seigneur of Retz?  And yet the face of the man was gentle and
honest.  No, it was not possible.

   "But then this victim. .. tell me clearly what it was.  You suppose
that I know already.  Perhaps I do know, but I have reasons for
wishing you to tell me."

   "It was, according to the magic ritual, a young goat of a year old,
virgin, and without defect."

   "A real young he-goat?"

   "Doubtless.  Understand that it was neither a child's toy, nor a
stuffed animal."

   Eliphas breathed again.

   "Good," thought he; "this man is not a sorcerer worthy of the
stake.  He does not know that the abominable authors {157} of the
"grimoire," when they spoke of the 'virgin he-goat,' meant a little

   "Well," said he to his consultant; "give me some details about your
visions.  What you tell me interests me in the highest degree."

   The sorcerer --- for one must call him so --- the sorcerer then
told him of a series of strange facts, of which two families had been
witness, and these facts were precisely identical with the phenomena
of Mr.Home: hands coming out of walls, movements of furniture,
phosphorescent apparitions. One day, the rash apprentice-magician had
dared to call up Astaroth, and had seen the apparition of a gigantic
monster having the body of a hog, and the head borrowed from the
skeleton of a colossal ox.  But he told all that with an accent of
truth, a certainty of having seen, which excluded every kind of doubt
as to the good faith and the entire conviction of the narrator. 
Eliphas, who is an epicure in magic, was delighted with this find.  In
the nineteenth century, a real sorcerer of the middle ages, a
remarkably innocent and convinced sorcerer, a sorcerer who had seen
Satan under the name of Adonai, Satan dressed like a respectable
citizen, and Astaroth in his true diabolical form!  What a supreme
find for a museum!  What a treasure for an archaeologist!

   "My friend," said he to his new disciple, "I am going to help you
to find what you say you have lost.  Take my book, observe the
prescriptions of the ritual, and come again to see me in a week."

   A week later he returned, but this time the workman declared that
he had invented a life-saving machine of the greatest importance for
the navy. The machine is perfectly {158} put together; it only lacks
one thing --- it will not work: there is a hidden defect in the
machinery.  What was that defect?  The evil spirit alone could tell
him.  It is then absolutely necessary to evoke him! ...

   "Take care you do not!" said Eliphas.  "You had much better say for
nine days this qabalistic evocation."  He gave him a leaf covered with
manuscript.  "Begin this evening, and return to-morrow to tell me what
you have seen, for to night you will have a manifestation."

   The next day, our good man did not miss the appointment.

   "I woke up suddenly," said he, "upon one o'clock in the morning. 
In front of my bed I saw a bright light, and in this light a "shadowy
arm" which passed and repassed before me, as if to magnetize me.  Then
I went to sleep again, and some instants afterwards, waking anew, I
saw again the same light, but it had changed its place.  It had passed
from left to right, and upon a luminous background I distinguished the
silhouette of a man who was looking at me with arms crossed."

   "What was this man like?"

   "Just about your height and breadth."

   "It is well.  Go, and continue to do what I told you."

   The nine days rolled by; at the end of that time, a new visit; but
this time he was absolutely radiant and excited.  As soon as he caught
sight of Eliphas:

   "Thanks, Master!" he cried.  "The machine works!  People whom I did
not know have come to place at my disposal the funds which were
necessary to carry out my enterprise; I have found again peace in
sleep; and all that thanks to your power!" {159}

   "Say, rather, thanks to your faith and your docility.  And now,
farewell: I must work. ..  Well, why do you assume this suppliant air,
and what more do you want of me?"

   "Oh, if you only would ------"

   "Well, what now?  Have you not obtained all that you asked for, and
even more than you asked for, for you did not mention money to me?"

   "Yes, doubtless," said the other sighing; "but I do want to see him

   "Incorrigible!" said Eliphas.

   Some days afterwards, the Professor of Transcendental Magic was
awakened, about two o'clock in the morning, by an acute pain in the
head. For some moments he feared a cerebral congestion.  He therefore
rose, relit his lamp, opened his window, walked to and fro in his
study, and then, calmed by the fresh air of the morning, he lay down
again, and slept deeply.  He had a nightmare: he saw, terribly real,
the giant with the fleshless ox's head of which the workman had spoken
to him.  The monster pursued him, and struggled with him.  When he
woke up, it was already day, and somebody was knocking at his door. 
Eliphas rose, threw on a dressing- gown, and opened; it was the

   "Master," said he, entering hastily, and with an alarmed air; "how
are you?"

   "Very well," replied Eliphas.

   "But last night, at two o'clock in the morning, did you not run a
great danger?"

   Eliphas did not grasp the allusion; he already no longer remembered
the indisposition of the night. {160}

   "A danger?" said he.  "No; none that I know of."

   "Have you not been assaulted by a monster phantom, who sought to
strangle you?  Did it not hurt you?"

   Eliphas remembered.

   "Yes," said he, "certainly, I had the beginning of a sort of
apoplectic attack, and a horrible dream.  But how do you know that?"

   "At the same time, an invisible hand struck me roughly on the
shoulder, and awoke me suddenly.  I dreamt then that I saw you
fighting with Astaroth.  I jumped up, and a voice said in my ear:
'Arise and go to the help of thy Master; he is in danger.'  I got up
in a great hurry.  But where must I run?  What danger threatened you? 
Was it at your own house, or elsewhere?  The voice said nothing about
that.  I decided to wait for sunrise; and immediately day dawned, I
ran, and here I am."

   "Thanks, friend," said the magus, holding out his hand; "Astaroth
is a stupid joker; all that happened last night was a little blood to
the head. Now, I am perfectly well.  Be assured, then, and return to
your work."

   Strange as may be the facts which we have just related, there
remains for us to unveil a tragic drama much more extraordinary still.

   It refers to the deed of blood which at the beginning of this year
plunged Paris and all Christendom into mourning and stupefaction; a
deed in which no one suspected that Black Magic had any part.

   Here is what happened:

   During the winter, at the beginning of last year, a bookseller
informed the author of the "Dogme et rituel de la" {161} "haute magie"
that an ecclesiastic was looking for his address, testifying the
greatest desire to see him.  Eliphas Levi did not feel himself
immediately prepossessed with confidence towards the stranger, to the
point of exposing himself without precaution to his visits; he
indicated the house of a friend, where he was to be in the company of
his faithful disciple, Desbarrolles.  At the hour and date appointed
they went, in fact, to the house of Mme. A------, and found that the
ecclesiastic had been waiting for them for some moments.

   He was a young and slim man; he had an arched and pointed nose,
with dull blue eyes.  His bony and projecting forehead was rather
broad than high, his head was dolichocephalic, his hair flat and
short, parted on one side, of a greyish blond with just a tinge of
chestnut of a rather curious and disagreeable shade.  His mouth was
sensual and quarrelsome; his manners were affable, his voice soft, and
his speech sometimes a little embarrassed.  Questioned by Eliphas Levi
concerning the object of his visit, he replied that he was on the
look-out for the "grimoire" of Honorius, and that he had come to learn
from the Professor of Occult Science how to obtain that little black
book, now-a-days almost impossible to find.

   "I would gladly give a hundred francs for a copy of that grimoire,"
said he.

   "The work in itself is valueless," said Eliphas.  "It is a
pretended constitution of Honorius II, which you will find perhaps
quoted by some erudite collector of apocryphal constitutions; you can
find it in the library."

   "I will do so, for I pass almost all my time in Paris in the public
libraries." {162}

   "You are not occupied in the ministry in Paris?"

   "No, not now; I was for some little while employed in the parish of
St. Germain-Auxerrois."

   "And you now spend your time, I understand, in curious researches
in occult science."

  "Not precisely, but I am seeking the realization of a thought. ... I
have something to do."

   "I do not suppose that this something can be an operation of Black
Magic.  You know as well as I do, reverend sir, that the Church has
always condemned, and still condemns, severely, everything which
relates to these forbidden practices."

   A pale smile, imprinted with a sort of sarcastic irony, was all the
answer that the Abbe gave, and the conversation fell to the ground.

   However, the cheiromancer Desbarrolles was attentively looking at
the hand of the priest; he perceived it, a quite natural explanation
followed, the Abbe offered graciously and of his own accord his hand
to the experimenter.  Desbarrolles knit his brows, and appeared
embarrassed.  The hand was damp and cold, the fingers smooth and
spatulated; the mount of Venus, or the part of the palm of the hand
which corresponds to the thumb, was of a noteworthy development, the
line of life was short and broken, there were crosses in the centre of
the hand, and stars upon the mount of the moon.

   "Reverend sir," said Desbarrolles, "if you had not a very solid
religious education you would easily become a dangerous sectary, for
you are led on the one hand toward the most exalted mysticism, and on
the other to the most concentrated obstinacy combined with the
greatest secretiveness that can {163} possibly be.  You want much, but
you imagine more, and as you confide your imaginations to nobody, they
might attain proportions which would make them veritable enemies for
yourself.  Your habits are contemplative an rather easygoing, but it
is a somnolence whose awakenings are perhaps to be dreaded.  You are
carried away by a passion which your state of life ------  But pardon,
reverend sir, I fear that I am over-stepping the boundaries of

   "Say everything, sir; I am willing to hear all, I wish to now

   "Oh, well!  If, as I do not doubt to be the case, you turn to the
profit of charity all the restless activities with which the passions
of your heart furnish you, you must often be blessed for your good

   The Abbe once more smiled that dubious and fatal smile which gave
so singular an expression to his pallid countenance.  He rose and took
his leave without having given his name, and without any one having
thought to ask him for it.

   Eliphas and Desbarrolles reconducted him as far as the staircase,
in token of respect for his dignity as a priest.

   Near the staircase he turned and said slowly:

   "Before long, you will hear something. ... You will hear me spoken
of," he added, emphasizing each word.  Then he saluted with head and
hand, turned without adding a single word, and descended the

   The two friends returned to Mme. A------'s room.

   "There is a singular personage," said Eliphas; "I think I have seen
Pierrot of the Funambules playing the part of a traitor.  What he said
to us on his departure seemed to me very much like a threat." {164}

   "You frightened him," said Mme. A------.  "Before your arrival, he
was beginning to open his whole mind, but you spoke to him of
conscience and of the laws of the Church, and he no longer dared to
tell you what he wished."

   "Bah!  What did he wish then?"

   "To see the devil."

   "Perhaps he thought I had him in my pocket?"

   "No, but he knows that you give lessons in the Qabalah, and in
magic, and so he hoped that you would help him in his enterprise.  He
told my daughter and myself that in his vicarage in the country, he
had already made one night an evocation of the devil by the help of a
popular "grimoire." 'Then' said he, 'a whirlwind seemed to shake the
vicarage; the rafts groaned, the wainscoting cracked, the doors shook,
the windows opened with a crash, and whistlings were heard in every
corner of the house.'  He then expected that formidable vision to
follow, but he saw nothing; no monster presented itself; in a word,
the devil would not appear.  That is why he is looking for the
"grimoire" of Honorius, for he hopes to find in it stronger
conjurations, and more efficacious rites."

   "Really!  But the man is then a monster, or a madman!"

   "I think he is just simply in love," said Desbarrolles.  "He is
gnawed by some absurd passion, and hopes for absolutely nothing unless
he can get the devil to interfere."

   "But how then --- what does he mean when he says that we shall hear
him spoken of?"

   "Who knows?  Perhaps he thinks to carry off the Queen of England,
or the Sultana Valide."

   The conversation dropped, and a whole year passed {165} without
Mme. A------. or Desbarrolles, or Eliphas hearing the unknown young
priest spoken of.

   In the course of the night between the 1st and 2nd of January,
1857, Eliphas Levi was awakened suddenly by the emotions of a bizarre
and dismal dream.  It seemed to him that he was in a dilapidated room
of gothic architecture, rather like the abandoned chapel of an old
castle.  A door hidden by a black drapery opened on to this room;
behind the drapery one guessed the hidden light of tapers, and it
seemed to Eliphas that, driven by a curiosity full of terror, he was
approaching the black drapery. ... Then the drapery was parted, and a
hand was stretched forth and seized the arm of Eliphas.  He saw no
one, but he heard a low voice which said in his ear:

   "Come and see your father, who is about to die."

   The magus awoke, his heart palpitating, and his forehead bathed in

   "What can this dream mean?" thought he.  "It is long since my
father died; why am I told that he is going to die, and why has this
warning upset me?"

   The following night, the same dream recurred with the same
circumstances; once more Eliphas awoke, hearing a voice in his ear

   "Come and see your father, who is about to die."

   This repeated nightmare made a painful impression upon Eliphas: he
had accepted, for the 3rd January, an invitation to dinner in pleasant
company, but he wrote and excused himself, feeling himself little
inclined for the gaiety of a banquet of artists.  He remained, then,
in his study; the weather was cloudy; at midday he received a visit
from one of his magical {166} pupils, Viscount M------.  When he left,
the rain was falling in such abundance that Eliphas offered his
umbrella to the Viscount, who refused it.  There followed a contest of
politeness, of which the result was that Eliphas went out to see the
Viscount home.  While they were in the street, the rain stopped, the
Viscount found a carriage, and Eliphas, instead of returning to his
house, mechanically crossed the Luxembourg, went out by the gate which
opens on the Rue d'Enfer, and found himself opposite the Pantheon.

   A double row of booths, improvised for the Festival of St.
Genevieve, indicated to pilgrims the road to St. Etienne-du-Mont. 
Eliphas, whose heart was sad, and consequently disposed to prayer,
followed that way and entered the church.  It might have been at that
time about four o'clock in the afternoon.

   The church was full of the faithful, and the office was performed
with great concentration, and extraordinary solemnity.  The banners of
the parishes of the city, and of the suburbs, bore witness to the
public veneration for the virgin who saved Paris from famine and
invasion.  At the bottom of the church, the tomb of St. Genevieve
shone gloriously with light.  They were chanting the litanies, and the
procession was coming out of the choir.

   After the cross, accompanied by its acolytes, and followed by the
choirboys, came the banner of St. Genevieve; then, walking in double
file, came the lady devotees of St. Genevieve, clothed in black, with
a white veil on the head, a blue ribbon around the neck, with the
medal of the legend, a taper in the hand, surmounted by the little
gothic lantern that tradition gives to the images of the saint.  For,
in the old books, {167} St Genevieve is always represented with a
medal on her neck, that which St. Germain d'Auxerre gave her, and
holding a taper, which the devil tries to extinguish, but which is
protected from the breath of the unclean spirit by a miraculous little

   After the lady devotees came the clergy; then finally appeared the
venerable Archbishop of Paris, mitred with a white mitre, wearing a
cope which was supported on each side by his two vicars; the prelate,
leaning on his cross, walked slowly, and blessed to right and left the
crowd which knelt about his path.  Eliphas saw the Archbishop for the
first time, and noticed the features of his countenance.  They
expressed kindliness and gentleness; but one might observe the
expression of a great fatigue, and even of a nervous suffering
painfully dissimulated.

   The procession descended to the foot of the church, traversing the
nave, went up again by the aisle at the left of the door, and came to
the station of the tomb of St. Genevieve; then it returned by the
right-hand aisle, chanting the litanies as it went.  A group of the
faithful followed the procession, and walked immediately behind the

   Eliphas mingled in this group, in order more easily to get through
the crowd which was about to reform, so that he might regain the door
of the church.  He was lost in reverie, softened by this pious

   The head of the procession had already returned to the choir, the
Archbishop was arriving at the railing of the nave: there the passage
was too narrow for three people to walk in file; the Archbishop was in
front, and the two grand-vicars behind him, always holding the edges
of his cope, which was {168} thus thrown off, and drawn backwards, in
such a manner that the prelate presented his breast uncovered, and
protected only the by crossed embroideries of his stole.

   Then those who were behind the Archbishop saw him tremble, and we
heard an interruption in a loud and clear voice; but without shouting,
or clamour.  What had been said?  It seemed that it was: "Down with
the goddesses!"  But I thought I had not heard aright, so out of place
and void of sense it seemed.  However, the exclamation was repeated
twice or thrice; then some one cried: "Save the Archbishop!"  Other
voices replied: "To arms!"  The crowd, overturning the chairs and the
barriers, scattered, and rushed towards the doors shrieking.  Amidst
the wails of the children, and the screams of the women, Eliphas,
carried away by the crowd, found himself somehow or other out of the
church; but the last look that he was able to cast upon it was smitten
with a terrible and ineffaceable picture!

   In the midst of a circle made large by the affright of all those
who surrounded him, the prelate was standing alone, leaning always on
his cross, and held up by the stiffness of his cope, which the
grand-vicars had let go, and which accordingly hung down to the

   The head of the Archbishop was a little thrown back, his eyes and
his free hand raised to heaven.  His attitude was that which Eugene
Delacroix has given to the Bishop of Liege in the picture of his
assassination by the bandits of the Wild Boar of the
Ardennes;<> there was in his gesture the whole {169} epic or
martyrdom; it was an acceptance and an offering; a prayer for his
people, and a pardon for his murderer.

   The day was falling, and the church was beginning to grow dark. 
The Archbishop, his arms raised to heaven, lighted by a last ray which
penetrated the casements of the nave, stood out upon a dark
background, where one could scarcely distinguish a pedestal without a
statue, on which were written these two words of the Passion of
Christ: ECCE HOMO! and farther in the background, an apocalyptic
painting representing the four plagues ready to let themselves loose
upon the world, and the whirlwinds of hell, following the dusty traces
of the pale horse of death.

   Before the Archbishop, a lifted arm, sketched in shadow like an
infernal silhouette, held and brandished a knife.  Policemen, sword in
hand, were running up.

   And while all this tumult was going on at the bottom of the church,
the singing of the litanies continued in the choir, {170} as the
harmony of the orbs of heaven goes on for ever, careless of our
revolutions and of our anguish.

   Eliphas Levi had been swept out of the church by the crowd.  He had
come out by the right-hand door.  Almost at the same moment the
left-hand door was flung violently open, and a furious group of men
rushed out of the church.

   This group was whirling around a man whom fifty arms seemed to
hold, whom a hundred shaken fists sought to strike.

   This man later complained of having been roughly handled by the
police, but, as far as one could see in such an uproar, the police
were rather protecting him against the exasperation of the mob.

   Women were running after him, shrieking: "Kill him!"

   "But what has he done?" cried other voices.

   "The wretch!  He has struck the Archbishop with his fist!" said the

   Then others came out of the church, and contradictory accounts were
flying to and fro.

   "The archbishop was frightened, and has fainted," said some.

   "He is dead!" replied others.

   "Did you see the knife?" added a third comer.  "It is as long as a
sabre, and the blood was steaming on the blade."

   "The poor Archbishop has lost one of his slippers," remarked an old
woman, joining her hands.

   "It is nothing!  It is nothing!" cried a woman who rented chairs. 
"You can come back to the church: Monseigneur is not hurt; they have
just said so from the pulpit."

   The crowd then made a movement to return to the church.  {171}

   "Go!  Go!" said at that very moment the grave and anguished voice
of a priest.  "The office cannot be continued; we are going to close
the church: it is profaned."

   "How is the Archbishop?" said a man.

   "Sir," replied the priest, "the Archbishop is dying; perhaps even
at this very moment he is dead!"

   The crowd dispersed in consternation to spread the mournful news
over Paris.

   A bizarre incident happened to Eliphas, and made a kind of
diversion for his deep sorrow at what had just passed.

   At the moment of the uproar, an aged woman of the most respectable
appearance had taken his arm, and claimed his protection.

   He made it a duty to reply to this appeal, and when he had got out
of the crowd with this lady: "How happy I am," said she, "to have met
a man who weeps for this great crime, for which, at this moment, so
many wretches rejoice!"

   "What are you saying, madam?  How is it possible that there should
exist beings so depraved as to rejoice at so great a misfortune?"

   "Silence!" said the old lady; "perhaps we are overheard. ...  Yes,"
she added, lowering her voice; "there are people who are exceedingly
pleased at what has happened.  And look there, just now, there was a
man of sinister mien, who said to the anxious crowd, when they asked
him what had happened, 'Oh, it is nothing!  It is a spider which has

   "No, madam, you must have misunderstood.  The crowd {172} would not
have suffered so abominable a remark, and the man would have been
immediately arrested."<>

   "Would to God that all the world thought as you do!" said the lady.

   Then she added: "I recommend myself to your prayers, for I see
clearly that you are a man of God."

   "Perhaps every one does not think so," replied Eliphas.

   "And what does the world matter to us?"  replied the lady with
vivacity; "the world lies and calumniates, and is impious!  It speaks
evil of you, perhaps.  I am not surprised at it, and if you knew what
it says of me, you would easily understand why I despise its opinion!"

   "The world speaks evil of you, madam?"

   "Yes, in truth, and the greatest evil that can be said."

   "How so?"

   "It accuses me of sacrilege."

   "You frighten me.  Of what sacrilege, if you please?"

   "Of an unworthy comedy that I am supposed to have played in order
to deceive two children, on the mountain of the Salette."

   "What!  You must be ------"

   "I am Mademoiselle de la Merliere."

   "I have heard speak of your trial, mademoiselle, and of the scandal
which it caused, but it seems to me that your age and your position
ought to have sheltered you from such an accusation."

   "Come and see me, sir, and I will present you to my lawyer, M.
Favre, who is a man of talent whom I wish to gain to God." {173}

   Thus talking, the two companions had arrived at the Rue du Vieux
Colombier. The Lady thanked her improvised cavalier, and renewed her
invitation to come to see her.

   "I will try to do so," said Eliphas; "but if I come shall I ask the
porter for Mille. de la Merliere?"

   "Do not do so," said she; "I am not know under that name; ask for
Mme. Dutruck."

   "Dutruck, certainly, madam; I present my humble compliments."

   And they separated.

   The trial of the assassin began, and Eliphas, reading in the
newspapers that the man was a priest, that he had belonged to the
clergy of St. Germain l'Auxerrois, that he had been a country vicar,
and that he seemed exalted to the point of madness, recalled the pale
priest who, a year earlier, had been looking for the "grimoire" of
Honorius.  But the description which the public sheets gave of the
criminal disagreed with the recollection of the Professor of Magic. 
In fact, the majority of the papers said that he had black hair. ...
"It is not he, then," thought Eliphas.  "However, I still keep in my
ear and in my memory the word which would now be explained for me by
this great crime: 'You will soon learn something.  Before a little,
you will hear speak of me.'"

   The trial took place with all the frightful vicissitudes with which
every one is familiar, and the accused was condemned to death.

   The next day, Eliphas read in a legal newspaper the account of this
unheard-of scene in the annals of justice, but a cloud passed over his
eyes when he came to the description of the accused: "He is blond."

   "It must be he," said the Professor of Magic.

   Some days afterwards, a person who had been able to sketch the
convict during the trial, showed it to Eliphas.

   "Let me copy this drawing," said he, all trembling with fear.

   He made the copy, and took it to his friend Desbarrolles, of whom
he asked, without other explanation:

   "Do you know this head?"

   "Yes," said Desbarrolles energetically.  "Wait a moment: yes, it is
the mysterious priest whom we saw at Mme. A------'s, and who wanted to
make magical evocations."

   "Oh, well, my friend, you confirm me in my sad conviction.  The man
we saw, we shall never see again; the hand which you examined has
become a bloody hand.  We have heard speak of him, as he told us we
should; that pale priest, do you know what was his name?"

   "Oh, my God!" said Desbarolles, changing colour, "I am afraid to
know it!"

   "Well, you know it: it was the wretch Louis Verger!"

   Some weeks after what we have just recorded, Eliphas Levi was
talking with a bookseller whose specialty was to make a collection of
old books concerning the occult sciences.  They were talking of the
"grimoire" of Honorius.

   "Now-a-days, it is impossible to find it," said the merchant.  "The
last that I had in my hands I sold to a priest for a hundred francs."

   "A young priest?  And do you remember what he looked like?"

   "Oh, perfectly, but you ought to know him well yourself, {175} for
he told me he had seen you, and it is I who sent him to you."

   No more doubt, then; the unhappy priest had found the fatal
"grimoire," he had done the evocation, and prepared himself for the
murder by a series of sacrileges.  For this is in what the infernal
evocations consist, according to the "grimoire" of Honorius:<>

   "Choose a black cock, and give him the name of the spirit of
darkness which one wishes to evoke.

   "Kill the cock, and keep its heart, its tongue, and the first
feather of its left wing.

   "Dry the tongue and the heart, and reduce them to powder.

   "Eat no meat and drink no wine, that day.

   "On Tuesday, at dawn, say a mass of the angels.

   "Trace upon the altar itself, with the feather of the cock dipped
in the consecrated wine, certain diabolical signatures (those of Mr.
Home's pencil, and the bloody hosts of Vintras).

   "On Wednesday, prepare a taper of yellow wax; rise at midnight, and
alone, in the church, begin the office of the dead.

   "Mingle with this office infernal evocations.

   "Finish the office by the light of a single taper, extinguish it
immediately, and remain without light in the church thus profaned
until sunrise.

   "On Thursday, mingle with the consecrated water the powder of the
tongue and heart of the black cock, and let the whole be swallowed by
a male lamb of nine days old. ..." {176}

   The hand refuses to write the rest.  It is a mixture of brutalizing
practices and revolting crimes, so constituted as to kill for evermore
judgment and conscience.<>

   But in order to communicate with the phantom of absolute evil, to
realize that phantom to the point of seeing and touching it, is it not
necessary to be without conscience and without judgment?

   There is doubtless the secret of this incredible perversity, of
this murderous fury, of this unwholesome hate against all order, all
ministry, all hierarchy, of this fury, above all, against the dogma
which sanctifies peace, obedience, gentleness, purity, under so
touching an emblem as that of a mother.

   This wretch thought himself sure not to die.  The Emperor, thought
he, would be obliged to pardon him; an honourable exile awaited him;
his crime would give him an enormous celebrity; his reveries would be
bought for their weight in gold by the booksellers.  He would become
immensely rich, attract the notice of a great lady, and marry beyond
the seas.  It is by such promises that the phantom of the devil, long
ago, lured Gilles de Laval, Seigneur of Retz, and made him wade from
crime to crime.  A man capable of evoking the devil, according to the
rites of the "grimoire" of Honorius, has gone so far upon the road of
evil that he is disposed to all kinds of hallucinations, and all lies.
 So, Verger slept in blood, to dream of I know not what abominable
pantheon; and he awoke upon the scaffold.

   But the aberrations of perversity do not constitute an insanity;
the execution of this wretch proved it. {177}

   One knows what desperate resistance he made to his executioners. 
"It is treason," said he; "I cannot die so!  Only one hour, an hour to
write to the Emperor!  The Emperor is bound to save me."

   Who, then, was betraying him?

   Who, then, had promised him life?

   Who, then, had assured him beforehand of a clemency which was
impossible, because it would revolt the conscience of the public?

   Ask all that of the "grimoire" of Honorius!

   Two incidents in this tragic story bear upon the phenomena produced
by Mr. Home: the noise of the storm heard by the wicked priest in his
early evocations, and the difficulty which he found in expressing his
real thought in the presence of Eliphas Levi.

   One may also comment upon the apparition of the sinister man taking
pleasure in the public grief, and uttering an indeed infernal word in
the midst of the consternation of the crowd, an apparition only
noticed by the ecstatic of La Salette, the too celebrated Mlle. de La
Merliere, who has the air after all of a worthy individual, but very
excitable, and perhaps capable of acting and speaking without knowing
it herself, under the influence of a sort of ascetic sleep-waking.

   This word "sleep-waking" brings us back to Mr. Home, and our
anecdotes have not made us forget what the title of this work promised
to our readers.

   We ought, then, to tell them what Mr. Home is.

   We keep our promise.

   "Mr. Home is an invalid suffering from a contagious sleep-waking."

   This is an assertion.

   It remains to us to give an explanation and a demonstration.

   That explanation and demonstration, in order to be complete, demand
a work sufficient to fill a book.

   That book has been written, and we shall publish it shortly.

   Here is the title:

   "The Reason of Miracles, or the Devil at the Tribunal of

   "Why the devil?"

   Because we have demonstrated by facts what Mr. de Mirville had,
before us, incompletely set forth.

   We say "incompletely"; because the devil is, for Mr. de Mirville, a
fantastic personage, while for us, it is the misuse of a natural

   A medium once said: "Hell is not a place, it is a state."

   We shall be able to add: "The devil is not a person or a force; it
is a vice, and in consequence, a weakness."

   Let us return for a moment to the study of phenomena!

   Mediums are, in general, of poor health and narrow limitations.

   They can accomplish nothing extraordinary in the presence of calm
and educated persons.

   One must be accustomed to them before seeing or feeling anything.

   The phenomena are not identical for all present.  For example,
where one will see a hand, another will perceive nothing but a whitish
smoke. {179}

   Persons impressed by the magnetism of Mr. Home feel a sort of
indisposition; it seems to them that the room turns round, and the
temperature seems to them to grow rapidly lower.

   The miracles are more successful in the presence of a few people
chosen by the medium himself.

   In a meeting of several persons, it may be that all will see the
miracles --- with the exception of one, who will see absolutely

   Among the persons who do see, all do not see the same thing.

   Thus, for example:

   One evening, at Mme. de V------'s, the medium made appear a child
which that lady had lost.  Mme. de B------ alone saw the child; Count
de M------ saw a little whitish vapour, in the shape of a pyramid; the
others saw nothing.

   Everybody knows that certain substances, hashish, for example,
intoxicate without taking away the use of reason, and cause to be seen
with an astonishing vividness things which do not exist.

   A great part of the phenomena of Mr. Home belong to a natural
influence similar to that of hashish.

   This is the reason why the medium refuses to operate except before
a small number of persons chosen by himself.

   The rest of these phenomena should be attributed to magnetic power.

   To see anything at Mr. Home's "seances" is not a reassuring index
of the health of him who sees.

   And even if his health should be in other ways excellent, {180} the
vision indicates a transitory perturbation of the nervous apparatus in
its relation to imagination and light.

   If this perturbation were frequently repeated, he would become
seriously ill.

   Who knows how many collapses, attacks of tetanus, insanities,
violent deaths, the mania of table-turning has already produced?

   These phenomena become particularly terrible when perversity takes
possession of them.

   It is then that one can really affirm the intervention and the
presence of the spirit of evil.

   Perversity or fatality, these pretended miracles obey one of these
two powers.

   As to qabalistic writings and mysterious signatures, we shall say
that they reproduce themselves by the magnetic intuition of the
mirages of thought in the universal vital fluid.

   These instinctive reflections may be produced if the magic Word has
nothing arbitrary in it, and if the signs of the occult sanctuary are
the natural expressions of absolute ideas.

   It is this which we shall demonstrate in our book.

   But, in order not to send back our readers from the unknown to the
future, we shall detach beforehand two chapters of that unpublished
work, one upon the qabalistic Word, the other upon the secrets of the
Qabalah, and we shall draw conclusions which will compete in a manner
satisfactory to all the explanation which we have promised in the
matter of Mr. Home.

   There exists a power which generates forms; this power is light.

   Light creates forms in accordance with the laws of eternal
mathematics, by the universal equilibrium of light and shadow.

   The primitive signs of thought trace themselves by themselves in
the light, which is the material instrument of thought.

   God is the soul of light.  The universal and infinite light is for
us, as it were, the body of god.

   The Qabalah, or transcendental magic, is the science of light.

   Light corresponds to life.

   The kingdom of shadows is death.

   All the dogmas of true religion are written in the Qabalah in
characters of light upon a page of shadow.

   The page of shadows consists of blind beliefs.

   Light is the great plastic medium.

   The alliance of the soul and the body is a marriage of light and

   Light is the instrument of the Word, it is the white writing of God
upon the great book of night.

   Light is the source of thought, and it is in it that one must seek
for the origin of all religious dogma.  But there is only one true
dogma, as there is only one pure light; shadow alone is infinitely

   Light, shadow, and their harmony, which is the vision of beings,
form the principle analogous to the great dogmas of Trinity, of
Incarnation, and of Redemption.

   Such is also the mystery of the cross.

   It will be easy for us to prove this by an appeal to religious
monuments, by the signs of the primitive Word, by {182} those books
which contain the secrets of the Qabalah, and finally by the reasoned
explanation of all the mysteries by the means of the keys of
qabalistic magic.

   In all symbolisms, in fact, we find ideas of antagonism and of
harmony producing a trinitarian notion in the conception of divinity,
following which the mythological personification of the four cardinal
points of heaven completes the sacred septenary, the base of all
dogmas and of all rites.  In order to convince oneself of it, it is
sufficient to read again and meditate upon the learned work of Dupuis,
who would be a great qabalist if he had seen a harmony of truths where
his negative preoccupations only permitted him to see a concert of

   It is not here our business to repeat his work, which everybody
knows; but it is important to prove that the religious reform brought
about by Moses was altogether qabalistic, that Christianity, in
instituting a new dogma, has simply come nearer to the primitive
sources of the teachings of Moses, and that the Gospel is no more than
a transparent veil thrown upon the universal and natural mysteries of
oriental initiation.

   A distinguished but little known man of learning, Mr. P. Lacour, in
his book on the Elohim or Mosaic God, has thrown a great light on that
question, and has rediscovered in the symbols of Egypt all the
allegorical figures of Genesis.  More recently, another courageous
student of vast erudition, Mr. Vincent (de l'Yonne), has published a
treatise upon idolatry among both the ancients and the moderns, in
which he raises the veil of universal mythology.

   We invite conscientious students to read these various {183} works,
and we confine ourselves to the special study of the Qabalah among the

   The Logos, or the word, being according to the initiates of that
science the complete revelation, the principles of the holy Qabalah
ought to be found reunited in the signs themselves of which the
primitive alphabet is composed.

   Now, this is what we find in all Hebrew grammars.<>

   There is a fundamental and universal letter which generates all the
others. It is the IOD.

   There are two other mother letters, opposed and analogous among
themselves;,the ALEPH HB:Aleph  and the MEM HB:Mem , according to
others the SCHIN HB:Shin .

   There are seven double letters, the BETH HB:Bet , the GIMEL
HB:Gemel , the DALETH HB:Dalet , the KAPH HB:Koph , the PE HB:Peh ,
the RESH HB:Resh , and the TAU HB:Taw .

   Finally, there are twelve simple letters; in all twenty-two.  The
unity is represented, in a relative manner, by the ALEPH; the ternary
is figured either by IOD, MEM, SCHIN, or by ALEPH, MEM, SCHIN.

   The septenary, by BETH, GIMEL, DALETH, KAPH, PE, RESH, TAU.

   The duodenary, by the other letters.

   The duodenary is the ternary multiplied by four; and it reenters
thus into the symbolism of the septenary.

   Each letter represents a number: each assemblage of letters, a
series of numbers. {184}

   The numbers represent absolute philosophical ideas.

   The letters are shorthand hieroglyphs.

   Let us see now the hieroglyphic and philosophical significations of
each of the twenty-two letters ("vide" Bellarmin, Reuchlin,
Saint-Jerome, Kabala denudata, Sepher Yetzirah, Technica curiosa of
Father Schott, Picus de Mirandola, and other authors, especially those
of the collection of Pistorius).

                                 THE MOTHERS

   The IOD. --- The absolute principle, the productive being.

   The MEM. --- Spirit, or the Jakin of Solomon.

   The SCHIN. --- Matter, or the column called Boaz.

                              THE DOUBLE LETTERS

   BETH.  Reflection, thought, the moon, the Angel Gabriel, Prince of

   GIMEL.  Love, will, Venus, the Angel Anael, Prince of life and

   DALETH.  Force, power, Jupiter, Sachiel, Melech, King of kings.

   KAPH.  Violence, strife, work, Mars, Samael  Zebaoth, Prince of

   PE.  Eloquence, intelligence, Mercury, Raphael, Prince of sciences.

   RESH.  Destruction and regeneration, Time, Saturn, Cassiel, King of
tombs and of solitude.

   TAU.  Truth, light, the Sun, Michael, King of the Elohim. {185}

                              THE SIMPLE LETTERS

   The simple letters are divided into four triplicities, having for
titles the four letters of the divine tetragam Yod-Heh-Vau-Heh.

   In the divine tetragram, the IOD, as we have just said, symbolizes
the productive and active principle. --- The HE HB:Heh  represents the
passive productive principle, the CTEIS.  --- The VAU symbolizes the
union of the two, or the lingam, and the final HE is the image of the
second reproductive principle; that is to say, of the passive
reproduction in the world of effects and forms.

   The twelve simple letters, HB:Qof  HB:Tzaddi  HB:Ayin  HB:Samekh 
HB:Nun  HB:Lamed  HB:Tet  HB:Chet  HB:Zain  HB:Vau  HB:Heh  and HB:Yod
 or HB:Mem , divided into threes, reproduce the notion of the
primitive triangle, with the interpretation, and under the influence,
of each of the letters of the tetragram.

   One sees that the philosophy and the religious dogma of the Qabalah
are there indicated in a complete but veiled manner.

   Let us now investigate the allegories of Genesis.

   "In the beginning (IOD the unity of being,) Elohim, the
equilibrated forces (Jakin and Boaz), created the heaven (spirit) and
the earth (matter), or in other words, good and evil, affirmation and
negation."  Thus begins the Mosaic account of creation.

   Then, when it comes to giving a place to man, and a sanctuary to
his alliance with divinity, Moses speaks of a garden, in the midst of
which a single fountain branched into four rivers (the IOD and the
TETRAGRAM), and then of two trees, one of life, and the other of
death, planted near the river.  There are placed the man and the
woman, the active and the {186} passive; the woman sympathizes with
death, and draws Adam with her in her fall.  They are then driven out
from the sanctuary of truth, and a kerub (a bull-headed sphinx, "vide"
the hieroglyphs of Assyria, of India and of Egypt) is placed at the
gate of the garden of truth in order to prevent the profane from
destroying the tree of life.  Here we have mysterious dogma, with all
its allegories and its terrors, replacing the simplicity of truth. 
The idol has replaced God, and fallen humanity will not delay to give
itself up to the worship of the golden calf.

   The mystery of the necessary and successive reactions of the two
principles on each other is indicated subsequently by the allegory of
Cain and Abel. Force avenges itself by oppression for the seduction of
weakness; martyred weakness expiates and intercedes for force when it
is condemned for its crime to branding remorse.  Thus is revealed the
equilibrium of the moral world; here is the basis of all the
prophecies, and the fulcrum of all intelligent political thought.  To
abandon a force to its own excesses is to condemn it to suicide.

   Dupuis failed to understand the universal religious dogma of the
Qabalah, because he had not the science of the beautiful hypothesis,
partly demonstrated and realized more from day to day by the
discoveries of science: I refer to "universal analogy."

   Deprived of this key of transcendental dogma, he could see no more
of the gods than the sun, the seven planets, and the twelve signs of
the zodiac; but he did not see in the sun the image of the Logos of
Plato, in the seven planets the seven notes of the celestial gamut,
and in the zodiac the quadrature of the ternary circle of all
initiations. {187}

   The Emperor Julian, that "adept of the spirit" who was never
understood, that initiate whose paganism was less idolatrous than the
faith of certain Christians, the Emperor Julian, we say, understood
better than Dupuis and Volney the symbolic worship of the sun.  In his
hymn to the king, Helios, he recognizes that the star of day is but
the reflection and the material shadow of that sun of truth which
illumines the world of intelligence, and which is itself only a light
borrowed from the Absolute.

   It is a remarkable thing that Julian has ideas of the Supreme God,
that the Christians thought they alone adored, much greater and more
correct than those of some of the fathers of the Church, who were his
contemporaries, and his adversaries.

   This is how he expresses himself in his defence of Hellenism:

   "It is not sufficient to write in a book that God spake, and things
were made.  It is necessary to examine whether the things that one
attributes to God are not contrary to the very laws of Being.  For, if
it is so, God could not have made them, for He could not contradict
Nature without denying Himself. ... God being eternal, it is of the
nature of necessity that His orders should be immutable as He."

   So spake that apostate, that man of impiety!  Yet, later, a
Christian doctor, become the oracle of the theological schools, taking
his inspiration perhaps from these splendid words of the misbeliever,
found himself obliged to bridle superstition by writing that beautiful
and brave maxim which easily resumes the thought of the great Emperor:

   "A thing is not just because God wills it; but God wills it because
it is just."

   The idea of a perfect and immutable order in nature, the notion of
an ascending hierarchy and of a descending influence in all beings,
had furnished to the ancient hierophants the first classification of
the whole of natural history.  Minerals, vegetables, animals were
studied analogically; and they attributed their origin and their
properties to the passive or to the active principle, to the darkness
or to the light.  The sign of their election or of their reprobation,
traced in their natural form, became the hieroglyphic character of a
vice or a virtue; then, by dint of taking the sign for the thing, and
expressing the thing by the sign, they ended by confounding them. Such
is the origin of that fabulous natural history, in which lions allow
themselves to be defeated by cocks, where dolphins die of sorrow for
the ingratitude of men, in which mandrakes speak, and the stars sing. 
This enchanted world is indeed the poetic domain of magic; but it has
no other reality than the meaning of the hieroglyphs which gave it
birth.  For the sage who understands the analogies of the
transcendental Qabalah, and the exact relation of ideas with signs,
this fabulous country of the fairies is a country still fertile in
discoveries; for those truths which are too beautiful, or too simple
to please men, without any veil, have all been hidden in these
ingenious shadows.

   Yes, the cock can intimidate the lion, and make himself master of
him, because vigilance often supplants force, and succeeds in taming
wrath.  The other fables of the sham natural history of the ancients
are explained in the same manner, and in this allegorical use of
analogies, one can {189} already understand the possible abuses and
predict the errors to which the Qabalah was obliged to give birth.

   The law of analogies, in fact, has been for qabalists of a
secondary rank the object of a blind and fanatical faith.  It is to
this belief that one must attribute all the superstitions with which
the adepts of occult science have been reproached.  This is how they

   The sign expresses the thing.

   The thing is the virtue of the sign.

   There is an analogical correspondence between the sign and the
thing signified.

   The more perfect is the sign, the more entire is the

   To say a word is to evoke a thought and make it present.  To name
God is to manifest God.

   The word acts upon souls, and souls react upon bodies; consequently
one can frighten, console, cause to fall ill, cure, even kill, and
raise from the dead by means of words.

   To utter a name is to create or evoke a being.

   In the name is contained the "verbal" or spiritual doctrine of the
being itself.

   When the soul evokes a thought, the sign of that thought is written
automatically in the light.

   To invoke is to adjure, that is to say, to swear by a name; it is
to perform an act of faith in that name, and to communicate in the
virtue which it represents.

   Words in themselves are, then, good or evil, poisonous or

   The most dangerous words are vain and lightly uttered words,
because they are the voluntary abortions of thought. {190}

   A useless word is a crime against the spirit of intelligence; it is
an intellectual infanticide.

   Things are for every one what he makes of them by naming them.  The
"word" of every one is an impression or an habitual prayer.

   To speak well is to live well.

   A fine style is an aureole of holiness.

   From these principles, some true, others hypothetical, and from the
more or less exaggerated consequences that they draw from them, there
resulted for superstitious qabalists and absolute confidence in
enchantments, evocations, conjurations and mysterious prayers.  Now,
as faith has always accomplished miracles, apparitions, oracles,
mysterious cures, sudden and strange maladies, have never been lacking
to it.

   It is thus that a simple and sublime philosophy has become the
secret science of Black Magic.  It is from this point of view above
all that the Qabalah is still able to excite the curiosity of the
majority in our so distrustful and so credulous century.  However, as
we have just explained, that is not the true science.

   Men rarely seek the truth from its own sake; they have always a
secret motive in their efforts, some passion to satisfy, or some greed
to assuage. Among the secrets of the Qabalah there is one above all
which has always tormented seekers; it is the secret of the
transmutation of metals, and of the conversion of all earthly
substances into gold.

   Alchemy borrowed all these signs from the Qabalah, and it is upon
the law of analogies resulting from the harmony of contraries that it
based its operations.  An immense physical secret was, moreover,
hidden under the qabalistic {191} parables of the ancients.  This
secret we have arrived at deciphering, and we shall submit its letter
to the investigations of the gold- makers.  Here it is:

   1 Degree.  The four imponderable fluids are nothing but the diverse
manifestations of one same universal agent, which is light.

   2 Degree.  Light is the fire which serves for the Great Work under
the form of electricity.

   3 Degree.  The human will directs the vital light by means of the
nervous system. In our days this is called Magnetism.

   4 Degree.  The secret agent of the Great Work, the Azoth of the
sages, the living and life-giving gold of the philosophers, the
universal metallic productive agent, is MAGNETIZED ELECTRICITY.<>

   The alliance of these two words still does not tell us much, and
yet, perhaps, they contain a force sufficient to overturn the world. 
We say "perhaps" on philosophical grounds, for, personally, we have no
doubt whatever of the high importance of this great hermetic arcanum.

   We have just said that alchemy is the daughter of the Qabalah; to
convince oneself of the truth of this it is sufficient to look at the
symbols of Flamel, of Basil Valentine, the pages of the Jew Abraham,
and the more or less apocryphal oracles of the Emerald Table of
Hermes.  Everywhere one finds the traces of that decade of Pythagoras,
which is so magnificently applied in the Sepher Yetzirah to the
complete and absolute notion of divine things, that decade composed of
unity and a triple ternary which the Rabbis have {192} called the
Berashith, and the Mercavah, the luminous tree of the Sephiroth, and
the key of the Shemhamphorash.

   We have spoken at some length in our book entitled "Dogme et rituel
de la haute magie" of a hieroglyphic monument (preserved up to our own
time under a futile pretext) which alone explains all the mysterious
writings of high initiation.  This monument is that Tarot of the
Bohemians which gave rise to our games of cards.  It is composed of
twenty-two allegorical letters, and of four series of ten hieroglyphs
each, referring to the four letters of the name of Jehovah.  The
diverse combinations of those signs, and the numbers which correspond
to them, form so many qabalistic oracles, so that the whole science is
contained in this mysterious book.  This perfectly simple
philosophical machine astonishes by the depth of its results.

   The Abbe Trithemius, one of our greatest masters in magic, composed
a very ingenious work, which he calls Polygraphy,<> upon the qabalistic
alphabet.  It is a combined series of progressive alphabets where each
letter represents a word, the words correspond to each other, and
complete themselves from one alphabet to another; and there is no
doubt that Trithemius was acquainted with the Tarot, and made use of
it to set his learned combinations in logical order.

   Jerome Cardan was acquainted with the symbolical alphabet of the
initiates, as one may recognize by the number and disposition of the
chapters of his work on Subtlety.  This work, in fact, is composed of
twenty-two chapters, and the subject of each chapter is analogous to
the number and to the allegory of the corresponding card of the Tarot.
 We {193} have made the same observation on a book of St. Martin
entitled "A Natural Picture of the Relations which exist between God,
Man and the Universe."  The tradition of this secret has, then, never
been interrupted from the first ages of the Qabalah to our own

   The table-turners, and those who make the spirits speak with
alphabetical charts, are, then, a good many centuries behind the
times; they do not know that there exists an oracular instrument whose
words are always clear and always accurate, by means of which one can
communicate with the seven genii of the planets, and make to speak at
will the seventy-two wheels of Assiah, of Yetzirah, and of Briah.  For
that purpose it is sufficient to understand the system of universal
analogies, such as Swedenborg has set it forth in the hieroglyphic key
of the arcana; then to mix the cards together, and draw from them by
chance, always grouping them by the numbers corresponding to the ideas
on which one desires enlightenment; then, reading the oracles as
qabalistic writings ought to be read, that is to say, beginning in the
middle and going from right to left for odd numbers, beginning on the
right for even numbers, and interpreting successively the number for
the letter which corresponds to it, the grouping of the letters by the
addition of their numbers, and all the successive oracles by their
numerical order, and their hieroglyphic relations.

   This operation of the qabalistic sages, originally intended to
discover the rigorous development of absolute ideas, degenerated into
superstition when it fell into the hands of the ignorant priests and
the nomadic ancestors of the Bohemians who possessed the Tarot in the
Middle Ages; {194} they did not know how to employ it properly, and
used it solely for fortune-telling.

   The game of chess, attributed to Palamedes, has no other origin
than the Tarot,<> and
one finds there the same combinations and the same symbols: the king,
the queen, the knight, the soldier, the fool, the tower, and houses
representing numbers.  In old times, chess-players sought upon their
chess-board the solution of philosophical and religious problems, and
argued silently with each other in manoeuvring the hieroglyphic
characters across the numbers.<>  Our
vulgar game of goose, revived from the old Grecian game, and also
attributed to Palamedes, is nothing but a chess-board with motionless
figures and numbers movable by means of dice.  It is a Tarot disposed
in the form of a wheel, for the use of aspirants to initiation.  Now,
the word Tarot, in which one finds "rota" and "tora," itself
expresses, as William Postel has demonstrated, this primitive
disposition in the form of a wheel.

   The hieroglyphs of the game of goose are simpler than those of the
Tarot, but one finds the same symbols in it: the juggler, the king,
the queen, the tower, the devil or Typhon, death, and so on.  The
dice-indicated chances of the game represent those of life, and
conceal a highly philosophical sense sufficiently profound to make
sages meditate, and simple enough to be understood by children.

   The allegorical personage Palamedes, is, however, identical with
Enoch, Hermes, and Cadmus, to whom various mythologies have attributed
the invention of letters.  But, in the conception of Homer, Palamedes,
the man who exposed the fraud of Ulysses and fell a victim to his
revenge, represents {195} the initiator or the man of genius whose
eternal destiny is to be killed by those whom he initiates.  The
disciple does not become the living realization of the thoughts of the
Master until he had drunk his blood and eaten his flesh, to use the
energetic and allegorical expression of the initiator, so ill
understood by Christians.

   The conception of the primitive alphabet was, as one may easily
see, the idea of a universal language which should enclose in its
combinations, and even in its signs themselves, the recapitulation and
the evolutionary law of all sciences, divine and human.  In our own
opinion, nothing finer or greater has ever been dreamt by the genius
of man; and we are convinced that the discovery of this secret of the
ancient world has fully repaid us for so many years of sterile
research and thankless toil in the crypts of lost sciences and the
cemeteries of the past.

   One of the first results of this discovery should be to give a new
direction to the study of the hieroglyphic writings as yet so
imperfectly deciphered by the rivals and successors of M. Champollion.

   The system of writing of the disciples of Hermes being analogical
and synthetical, like all the signs of the Qabalah, would it not be
useful, in order to read the pages engraved upon the stones of the
ancient temples, to replace these stones in their place, and to count
the numbers of their letters, comparing them with the numbers of other

   The obelisk of Luxor, for example, was it not one of the two
columns at the entrance of a temple?  Was it at the right-hand or the
left-hand pillar?  If at the right, these signs refer to the active
principle; if at the left, it is by the passive principle {196} that
one must interpret its characters.  But there should be an exact
correspondence of one obelisk with the other, and each sign should
receive its complete sense from the analogy of contraries. M.
Champollion found Coptic in the hieroglyphics, another savant would
perhaps find more easily, and more fortunately, Hebrew; but what would
one say if it were neither Hebrew nor Coptic?  If it were, for
example, the universal primitive language?  Now, this language, which
was that of the transcendental Qabalah, did certainly exist; more, it
still exists at the base of Hebrew itself, and of all the oriental
languages which derive from it; this language is that of the
sanctuary, and the columns at the entrance of the temples ordinarily
contained all its symbols.  The intuition of the ecstatics comes
nearer to the truth with regard to these primitive signs that even the
science of the learned, because, as we have said, the universal vital
fluid, the astral light, being the mediating principle between the
ideas and the forms, is obedient to the extraordinary leaps of the
soul which seeks the unknown, and furnishes it naturally with the
signs already found, but forgotten, of the great revelations of
occultism.  Thus are formed the pretended signatures of spirits, thus
were produced the mysterious writings of Gablidone, who appeared to
Dr. Lavater, the phantoms of Schroepfer, of St. Michel-Vintras, and
the spirits of Mr. Home.

   If electricity can move a light, or even a heavy body, without one
touching it, is it impossible to give by magnetism a direction to
electricity, and to produce, thus naturally, signs and writings?  One
can do it, doubtless; because one does it. {197}

   Thus, then, to those who ask us, "What is the most important agent
of miracles?" we shall reply ---

   "It is the first matter of the Great Work.


   Everything has been created by light.

   It is in light that form is preserved.

   It is by light that form reproduces itself.

   The vibrations of light are the principle of universal movement.

   By light, the suns are attached to each other, and they interlace
their rays like chains of electricity.

   Men and things are magnetized by light like the suns, and, by means
of electro-magnetic chains whose tension is caused by sympathies and
affinities, are able to communicate with each other from one end of
the world to the other, to caress or strike, wound or heal, in a
manner doubtless natural, but invisible, and of the nature of prodigy.

   There is the secret of magic.

   Magic, that science which comes to us from the magi!

   Magic, the first of sciences!

   Magic, the holiest science, because it establishes in the sublimest
manner the great religious truths!

   Magic, the most calumniated of all, because the vulgar obstinately
confound magic with the superstitious sorcery whose abominable
practices we have denounced!

   It is only by magic that one can reply to the enigmatical questions
of the Sphinx of Thebes, and find the solution of those problems of
religious history which are sealed in the sometimes scandalous
obscurities which are to be found in the stories of the Bible. {198}

   The sacred historians themselves recognize the existence and the
power of the magic which boldly rivalled that of Moses.

   The Bible tells us that Jannes and Jambres, Pharaoh's magicians, at
first performed "the same miracles" as Moses, and that they declared
those which they could not imitate impossible to human science.  It is
in fact more flattering to the self-love of a charlatan to deem that a
miracle has taken place, than to declare himself conquered by the
science or skill of a fellow-magician --- above all, when he is a
political enemy or a religious adversary.

   When does the possible in magical miracles begin and end?  Here is
a serious and important question.  What is certain is the existence of
the facts which one habitually describes as miracles.  Magnetizers and
sleep-wakers do them every day; Sister Rose Tamisier did them; the
"illuminated" Vintras does them still; more than fifteen thousand
witnesses recently attested those of the American mediums; ten
thousand peasants of Berry and Sologne would attest, if need were,
those of the god Cheneau (a retired button-merchant who believes
himself inspired by God).  Are all these people hallucinated or
knaves? Hallucinated, yes, perhaps, but the very fact that their
hallucination is identical, whether separately or collectively, is it
not a sufficiently great miracle on the part of him who produces it,
always, at will, and at a stated time and place?

   To do miracles, and to persuade the multitude that one does them,
are very nearly the same thing, above all in a century as frivolous
and scoffing as ours.  Now, the world is full of wonder-makers, and
science is often reduced to denying their works or refusing to see
them, in order not to be reduced to examining them, or assigning a
cause to them.  {199}

   In the last century all Europe resounded with the miracles of
Cagliostro. Who is ignorant of what powers were attributed to his
'wine of Egypt,' and to his 'elixir'?  What can we add to the stories
that they tell of his other- world suppers, where he made appear in
flesh and blood the illustrious personages of the past?  Cagliostro
was, however, far from being an initiate of the first order, since the
Great White Brotherhood abandoned him<> to the Roman Inquisition,
before whom he made, if one can believe the documents to his trial, so
ridiculous and so odious an explanation of the Masonic trigram, L.'.
P.'. D.'.

   But miracles are not the exclusive privilege of the first order of
initiates; they are often performed by beings without education or
virtue. Natural laws find an opportunity in an organism whose
exceptional qualifications are not clear to us, and they perform their
work with their invariable precision and calm.  The most refined
gourmets appreciate truffles, and employ them for their purposes, but
it is hogs that dig them up: it is analogically the same for plenty of
things less material and less gastronomical: instincts have groping
presentiments, but it is really only science which discovers.

   The actual progress of human knowledge has diminished by a great
deal the chances of prodigies, but there still remains a great number,
since both the power of the imagination and the nature and power of
magnetism are not yet known.  The observation of universal analogies,
moreover, has been neglected, and for that reason divination is no
longer believed in. {200}

   A qabalistic sage may, then, still astonish the crowd and even
bewilder the educated:

   1 Degree --- By divining hidden things; 2 Degree --- by prediction
many things to come; 3 Degree --- by dominating the will of others so
as to prevent them doing what they will, and forcing them to do what
they do not will; 4 Degree --- by exciting apparitions and dreams; 5
Degree --- by curing a large number of illnesses; 6 Degree --- by
restoring life to subjects who display all the symptoms of death; 7
Degree --- lastly, by demonstrating (if need be, by examples) the
reality of the philosophical stone, and the transmutation of metals,
according to the secrets of Abraham the Jew, of Flamel, and of Raymond

   All these prodigies are accomplished by means of a single agent
which the Hebrew calls OD, as did the Chevalier de Reichenback, which
we, with the School of Pasqualis Martinez, call astral light, which
Mr. de Mirville calls the devil, and which the ancient alchemists
called Azoth.  It is the vital element which manifests itself by the
phenomena of heat, light, electricity and magnetism, which magnetizes
all terrestrial globes, and all living beings.

   In this agent even are manifested the proofs of the qabalistic
doctrine with regard to equilibrium and motion, by double polarity;
when one pole attracts the other repels, one produces heat, the other
cold, one gives a blue or greenish light, the other a yellow or
reddish light.

   This agent, by its different methods of magnetization, attracts us
to each other, or estranges us from each other, subordinates one to
the wishes of the other by causing him to enter his centre of
attraction, re-establishes or disturbs the equilibrium in animal
economy by its transmutations and its {201} alternate currents,
receives and transmits the imprints of the force of imagination which
is in men the image and the semblance of the creative word, and thus
produces presentiments and determines dreams.  The science of miracles
is then the knowledge of this marvellous force, and the art of doing
miracles is simply the art of magnetizing or "illuminating" beings,
according to the invariable laws of magnetism or astral light.

   We prefer the word "light" to the word "magnetism," because it is
more traditional in occultism, and expresses in a more complete and
perfect manner the nature of the secret agent.  There is, in truth,
the liquid and drinkable gold of the masters in alchemy; the word "OR"
(the French word for "gold") comes from the Hebrew "AOUR" which
signifies "light."  "What do you wish?" they asked the candidate in
every initiation: "To see the light," should be their answer.  The
name of illuminati which one ordinarily gives to adepts, has then been
generally very badly interpreted by giving to it a mystical sense, as
if it signified men whose intelligence believes itself to be lighted
by a miraculous day.  'Illuminati' means simply, knowers and
possessors of the light, either by the knowledge of the great magical
agent, or by the rational and ontological notion of the absolute.

   The universal agent is a force tractable and subordinate to
intelligence. Abandoned to itself, it, like Moloch, devours rapidly
all that to which it gives birth, and changes the superabundance of
life into immense destruction. It is, then, the infernal serpent of
the ancient myths, the Typhon of the Egyptians, and the Moloch of
Phoenicia; but if Wisdom, mother of the Elohim, puts her foot upon his
head, she outwears {202} all the flames which he belches forth, and
pours with full hands upon the earth a vivifying light. Thus also it
is said in the Zohar that at the beginning of our earthly period, when
the elements disputed among themselves the surface of the earth, that
fire, like an immense serpent, had enveloped everything in its coils,
and was about to consume all beings, when divine clemency, raising
around it the waves of the sea like a vestment of clouds, put her foot
upon the head of the serpent and made him re-enter the abyss.  Who
does not see in this allegory the first idea, and the most reasonable
explanation, of one of the images dearest to Catholic symbolism, the
triumph of the Mother of God?

   The qabalists say that the occult name of the devil, his true name,
is that of Jehovah written backwards.  This, for the initiate, is a
complete revelation of the mysteries of the tetragram.  In fact, the
order of the letters of that great name indicates the predominance of
the idea over form, of the active over the passive, of cause over
effect.  By reversion that order one obtains the contrary.  Jehovah is
he who tames Nature as it were a superb horse and makes it go where he
will; Chavajoh (the demon) is the horse without a bridle who, like
those of the Egyptians of the song of Moses, falls upon its rider, and
hurls him beneath it, into the abyss.

   The devil, then, exists really enough for the qabalists; but it is
neither a person nor a distinguished power of even the forces of
Nature.  The devil is dispersion, or the slumber of the intelligence. 
It is madness and falsehood.

   Thus are explained the nightmares of the Middle Ages; thus, too,
are explained the bizarre symbols of some initiates, those of the
Templars, for example, who are much less to be {203} blamed for having
worshipped Baphomet, than for allowing its image to be perceived by
the profane.  Baphomet, pantheistic figure of the universal agent, is
nothing else than the bearded devil of the alchemists.  One knows that
the members of the highest grades in the old hermetic masonry
attributed to a bearded demon the accomplishment of the Great Work. 
At this word, the vulgar hastened to cross themselves, and to hide
their eyes, but the initiates of the cult of Hermes-Pantheos
understood the allegory, and were very careful not to explain it to
the profane.

   Mr. de Mirville, in a book to-day almost forgotten, though it made
some noise a few months ago, gives himself a great deal of trouble to
compile an account of various sorceries, of the kind which fill the
compilations of people like Delancre, Delrio, and Bodin.  He might
have found better than that in history.  And without speaking of the
easily attested miracles of the Jansenists of Port Royal, and of the
Deacon Paris, what is more marvellous than the great monomania of
martyrdom which has made children, and even women, during three
hundred years, go to execution as if to a feast?  What more
magnificent than that enthusiastic faith accorded during so many
centuries to the most incomprehensible, and, humanly speaking, to the
most revolting mysteries?  On this occasion, you will say, the
miracles came from God, and one even employs them as a proof of the
truth of religion.  But, what? heretics, too, let themselves be killed
for dogmas, this time quite frankly and really absurd.  They then
sacrificed both their reason and their life to their belief?  Oh, for
heretics, it is evident that the devil was responsible. Poor folk, who
took the devil for God, and God for the devil!  Why have {204} they
not been undeceived by making them recognize the true God by the
charity, the knowledge, the justice, and above all, by the mercy of
his ministers?

   The necromancers who cause the devil to appear after a fatiguing
and almost impossible series of the most revolting evocations, are
only children by the side of that St. Anthony of the legend who drew
them from hell by thousands, and dragged them everywhere after him,
like Orpheus, who attracted to him oaks, rocks and the most savage

   Callot alone, initiated by the wandering Bohemians during his
infancy into the mysteries of black sorcery, was able to understand
and reproduce the evocations of the first hermit.  And do you think
that in retracing those frightful dreams of maceration and fasting,
the makers of legends have invented?  No; they have remained far below
the truth.  The cloisters, in fact, have always been peopled with
nameless spectres, and their walls have palpitated with shadows and
infernal larvae.  St. Catherine of Siena on one occasion passed a week
in the midst of an obscene orgy which would have discouraged the lust
of Pietro di Aretino; St. Theresa felt herself carried away living
into hell, and there suffered, between walls which ever closed upon
her, tortures which only hysterical women will be able to understand.
... All that, one will say, happened in the imagination of the
sufferers.  But where, then, would you expect facts of a supernatural
order to take place? What is certain is that all these visionaries
have seen and touched, that they have had the most vivid feeling of a
formidable reality.  We speak of it from our own experience, and there
are visions of our own first youth, passed in retreat and asceticism,
whose memory makes us shudder even now.  {205}

   God and the devil are the ideals of absolute good and evil.  But
man never conceives absolute evil, save as a false idea of good.  Good
only can be absolute; and evil is only relative to our ignorance, and
to our errors. Every man, in order to be a God, first makes himself a
devil; but as the law of solidarity is universal, the hierarchy exists
in hell as it does in heaven. A wicked man will always find one more
wicked than himself to do him harm; and when the evil is at its
climax, it must cease, for it could only continue by the annihilation
of being, which is impossible.  Then the man-devils, at the end of
their resources, fall once more under the empire of the god-men, and
are saved by those whom one at first thought their victims; but the
man who strives to live a life of evil deeds, does homage to good by
all the intelligence and energy that he develops in himself.  For this
reason the great initiator said in his figurative language: "I would
that thou wert cold or hot; but because thou art lukewarm, I will spew
thee out of my mouth."

   The Great Master, in one of his parables, condemns only the idle
man who buried his treasure from fear of losing it in the risky
operations of that bank which we call life.  To think nothing, to love
nothing, to wish for nothing, to do nothing --- that is the real sin. 
Nature only recognizes and rewards workers.

   The human will develops itself and increases itself by its own
activity. In order to will truly, one must act.  Action always
dominates inertia and drags it at its chariot wheels.  This is the
secret of the influence of the alleged wicked over the alleged good. 
How many poltroons and cowards think themselves virtuous because they
are afraid to be otherwise! {206}  How many respectable women cast an
envious eye upon prostitutes!  It is not very long ago since convicts
were in fashion.  Why?  Do you think that public opinion can ever give
homage to vice?  No, but it can do justice to activity and bravery,
and it is right that cowardly knaves should esteem bold brigands.

   Boldness united to intelligence is the mother of all successes in
this world.  To undertake, one must know; to accomplish, one must
will; to will really, one must dare; and in order to gather in peace
the fruits of one's audacity, one must keep silent.

   TO KNOW, TO DARE, TO WILL, TO KEEP SILENT, are, as we have said
elsewhere, the four qabalistic words which correspond to the four
letters of the tetragram and to the four hieroglyphic forms of the
Sphinx.  To know, is the human head; to dare, the claws of the lion;
to will, the mighty flanks of the bull; to keep silent, the mystical
wings of the eagle.  He only maintains his position above other men
who does not prostitute the secrets of his intelligence to their
commentary and their laughter.

   All men who are really strong are magnetizers, and the universal
agent obeys their will.  It is thus that they work marvels.  They make
themselves believed, they make themselves followed, and when they say,
"This is thus," Nature changes (in a sense) to the eyes of the vulgar,
and becomes what the great man wished.  "This is my flesh and this is
my blood," said a Man who had made himself God by his virtues; and
eighteen centuries, in the presence of a piece of bread and a little
wine, have seen, touched, tasted and adored flesh and blood made
divine by martyrdom!  Say now, that the human will accomplishes no
miracles! {207}

   Do not let us here speak of Voltaire!  Voltaire was not a
wonder-worker, he was the witty and eloquent interpreter of those on
whom the miracle no longer acted.  Everything in his work is negative;
everything was affirmative, on the contrary, in that of the
"Galilean," as an illustrious and too unfortunate Emperor called Him.

   And yet Julian in his time attempted more than Voltaire could
accomplish; he wished to oppose miracles to miracles, the austerity of
power to that of revolt, virtues to virtues, wonders to wonders; the
Christians never had a more dangerous enemy, and they recognized the
fact, for Julian was assassinated; and the Golden Legend still bears
witness that a holy martyr, awakened in his tomb by the clamour of the
Church, resumed his arms, and struck the Apostate in the darkness, in
the midst of his army and of his victories.  Sorry martyrs, who rise
from the dead to become hangmen!  Too credulous Emperor, who believed
in his gods, and in the virtues of the past!

   When the kings of France were hedged around with the adoration of
their people, when they were regarded as the Lord's anointed, and the
eldest sons of the Church, they cured scrofula.  A man who is the
fashion can always do miracles when he wishes.  Cagliostro may have
been only a charlatan, but as soon as opinion had made of him "the
divine Cagliostro," he was expected to work miracles; and they

   When Cephas Barjona was nothing but a Jew proscribed by Nero,
retailing to the wives of slaves a specific for eternal life, Cephas
Barjona, for all educated people of Rome

, was only a charlatan; but public opinion made an apostle of the
{208} Spiritualistic empiric; and the successors of Peter, were they
Alexander VI, or even John XXII, are infallible for every man who is
properly brought up, who does not wish to put himself uselessly
outside the pale of society.  So goes the world.

   Charlatanism, when it is successful, is then, in magic as in
everything else, a great instrument of power.  To fascinate the mob
cleverly, is not that already to dominate it?  The poor devils of
sorcerers who in the Middle Ages stupidly got themselves burnt alive
had not, it is easy to see, a great empire on others.  Joan of Arc was
a magician at the head of her armies, and at Rouen the poor girl was
not even a witch.  She only knew how to pray, and how to fight, and
the prestige which surrounded her ceased as soon as she was in chains.
 Does history tell us that the King of France demanded her release?
That the French nobility, the people, the army protested against her
condemnation?  The Pope, whose eldest son was the King of France, did
he excommunicate the executioners of the Maid of Orleans?  No, nothing
of all that!  Joan of Arc was a sorceress for every one as soon as she
ceased to be a magician, and it was certainly not the English alone
who burned her.  When one exercises an apparently superhuman power,
one must exercise it always, or resign oneself to perish.  The world
always avenges itself in a cowardly way for having believed too much,
admired too much, and above all, obeyed too much.

   We only understand magic power in its application to great matters.
 If a true practical magician does not make himself master of the
world, it is that he disdains it.  To what, then, would he degrade his
sovereign power?  "I will give {209} thee all the kingdoms of the
world, if thou wilt fall at my feet and worship me," the Satan of the
parable said to Jesus.  "Get thee behind me, Satan," replied the
Saviour; "for it is written, Thou shalt adore God alone." ... "ELI,
ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI!" was what this sublime and divine adorer of God
cried later.  If he had replied to Satan, "I will not adore thee, and
it is thou who wilt fall at my feet, for I bid thee in the name of
intelligence and eternal reason," he would not have consigned his holy
and noble life to the most frightful of all tortures.  The Satan of
the mountain was indeed cruelly avenged!

   The ancients called practical magic the sacerdotal and royal art,
and one remembers that the magi were the masters of primitive
civilization, because they were the masters of all the science of
their time.

   To know is to be able when one dares to will.

   The first science of the practical qabalist, or the magus, is the
knowledge of men.  Phrenology, psychology, chiromancy, the observation
of tastes and of movement, of the sound of the voice and of either
sympathetic or antipathetic impressions, are branches of this art, and
the ancients were not ignorant of them.  Gall and Spurzheim in our
days have rediscovered phrenology.  Lavater, following Porta, Cardan,
Taisnier, Jean Belot and some others have divined anew rather than
rediscovered the science of psychology; chiromancy is still occult,
and one scarcely finds traces of it in the quite recent and very
interesting work of d'Arpentigny.  In order to have sufficient notions
of it, one must remount to the qabalistic sources themselves from
which the learned Cornelius Agrippa drew water.  It is, then,
convenient to say a few words {210} on the subject while waiting for
the work of our friend Desbarrolles.

   The hand is the instrument of action in man: it is, like the face,
a sort of synthesis of the nervous system, and should also have
features and physiognomy.  The character of the individual is traced
there by undeniable signs.  Thus, among hands, some are laborious,
some are idle, some square and heavy, others insinuating and light. 
Hard and dry hands are made for strife and toil, soft and damp hands
ask only for pleasure.  Pointed fingers are inquisitive and mystical,
square fingers mathematical, spatulated fingers obstinate and

   The thumb, pollex, the finger of force and power, corresponds in
the qabalistic symbolism to the first letter of the name of Jehovah. 
This finger is then a synthesis of the hand: if it is strong, the man
is morally strong; if it is weak, the man is weak.  It has three
phalanges, of which the first is hidden in the palm of the hand, as
the imaginary axis of the world traverses the thickness of the earth. 
This first phalanx corresponds to the physical life, the second to the
intelligence, the third to the will.  Greasy and thick palms denote
sensual tastes and great force of physical life; a thumb which is
long, especially in its last phalanx, reveals a strong will, which may
go as far as despotism; short thumbs, on the contrary, show characters
gentle and easily controlled.

   The habitual folds of the hand determine its lines.  These lines
are, then, the traces of habits, and the patient observer will know
how to recognize them and how to judge them.  The man whose hand folds
badly is clumsy or unhappy. The hand has three principal functions: to
grasp, to hold, and to {211} handle.  The subtlest hands seize and
handle best; hard and strong hands hold longer.  Even the lightest
wrinkles bear witness to the habitual sensations of the organ.  Each
finger has, besides, a special function from which it takes its name. 
We have already spoken of the thumb; the index is the finger which
points out, it is that of the word and of prophecy; the medius
dominates the whole hand, it is that of destiny; the ring-finger is
that of alliances and of honours: chiromancers have consecrated it to
the sun; the little finger is insinuating and talkative, at least, so
say simple folk and nursemaids, whose little finger tells them so
much.  The hand has seven protuberances which the qabalists, following
natural analogies, have attributed to the seven planets: that of the
thumb, to Venus; that of the index to Jupiter; that of the medius, to
Saturn; that of the ring-finger to the Sun; that of the little finger,
to Mercury; the two others to Mars and to the Moon.  According to
their form and their predominance, they judged the inclinations, the
aptitudes, and consequently the probable destinies of the individuals
who submitted themselves to their judgment.

   There is no vice which does not leave its trace, no virtue which
has not its sign.  Thus, for the trained eyes of the observer, no
hypocrisy is possible.  One will understand that such a science is
already a power indeed sacerdotal and royal.

   The prediction of the principal events of life is already possible
by means of the numerous analogical probabilities of this observation:
but there exists a faculty called that of presentiments or
sensitivism.  Events exist often in their causes before realizing
themselves in action; sensitives see in advance {212} the effects in
the causes.  Previous to all great events, there have been most
astonishing predictions.  In the reign of Louis Philippe we heard
sleep-walkers and ecstatics announce the return of the Empire, and
specify the date of its coming.  The Republic of 1848 was clearly
announced in the prophecy of Orval, which dated at least from 1830 and
which we strongly suspect to be, like those works attributed to the
brothers Olivarius, the posthumous work of Mlle. Lenormand.  This is a
matter of little importance in this thesis.

   That magnetic light which causes the future to appear, also causes
things at present existing, but hidden, to be guessed; as it is the
universal life, it is also the agent of human sensibility,
transmitting to some the sickness or the health of others, according
to the fatal influence of contracts, or the laws of the will.  It is
that which explains the power of benedictions and of bewitchments so
clearly recognized by the great adepts, and above all by the wonderful
Paracelsus.  An acute and judicious critic, Mr. Ch. Fauvety, in an
article published by the "Revue philosophique et religieuse,"
appreciates in a remarkable manner the advanced works of Paracelsus,
of Pomponacius, of Goglienus, or Crollis, and of Robert Fludd on
magnetism.  But what our learned friend and collaborator studies only
as a philosophical curiosity, Paracelsus and his followers practised
without being very anxious that the world should understand it; for it
was for them one of those traditional secrets with regard to which
silence is necessary, and which it is sufficient to indicate to those
who know, leaving always a veil upon the truth for the ignorant.

   Now here is what Paracelsus reserved for initiates alone, {213} and
what we have understood through deciphering the qabalistic characters,
and the allegories of which he makes use in his work:

   The human soul is material; the divine "mens" is offered to it to
immortalize it and to make it live spiritually and individually, but
its natural substance is fluidic and collective.

   There are, then, in man, two lives: the individual or reasonable
life, and the common or instinctive life.  It is by this latter that
one can live in the bodies of others, since the universal soul, of
which each nervous organism has a separate consciousness, is the same
for all.

   We live in a common and universal life in the embryonic state, in
ecstasy, and in sleep.  In sleep, in fact, reason does not act, and
logic, when it mingles in our dreams, only does so by chance, in
accordance with the accidents of purely physical reminiscences.

   In dreams, we have the consciousness of the universal life; we
mingle ourselves with water, fire, air, and earth; we fly like birds;
we climb like squirrels; we crawl like serpents; we are intoxicated
with astral light; we plunge into the common reservoir, as happens in
a more complete manner in death; but then (and it is thus that
Paracelsus explains the mysteries of the other life) the wicked, that
is to say, those who have allowed themselves to be dominated by the
instinct of the brute to the prejudice of human reason, are drowned in
the ocean of the common life with all the anguish of eternal death;
the others swim upon it, and enjoy for ever the riches of that fluid
gold which they have succeeded in dominating.

   This identity of all physical life permits the stronger {214} souls
to possess themselves of the existence of the others, and to make
auxiliaries of them; it explains sympathetic currents either near or
distant, and gives the whole secret of occult medicine, because the
principle of this medicine is the grand hypothesis of universal
analogies, and, attributing all the phenomena of physical life to the
universal agent, teaches that one must act upon the astral body in
order to react upon the material visible body; it teaches also that
the essence of the astral light is a double movement of attraction and
repulsion; just as human bodies attract and repel one another, they
can also absorb themselves, extend one into another, and make
exchanges; the ideas or imaginations of one can influence the form of
the other, and subsequently react upon the exterior body.

   Thus are produced the so strange phenomena of maternal impressions,
thus the neighbourhood of invalids gives bad dreams, and thus the soul
breathes in something unwholesome when in the company of fools and

   One may remark that in boarding-schools the children tend to
assimilate in physiognomy; each place of education has, so to speak, a
family air which is peculiar to it.  In orphan schools conducted by
nuns all the girls resemble each other, and all take on that obedient
and effaced physiognomy which characterizes ascetic education.  Men
become handsome in the school of enthusiasm, of the arts, and of
glory; they become ugly in prison, and of sad countenance in
seminaries and in convents.

   Here it will be understood we leave Paracelsus, in order that we
may investigate the consequences and applications of his ideas, which
are simply those of the ancient magi, and {215} to study the elements
of that physical Qabalah which we call magic.

   According to the qabalistic principles formulated by the school of
Paracelsus, death is nothing but a slumber, ever growing deeper and
more definite, a slumber which it would not be impossible to stop in
its early stages by exercising a powerful action of will on the astral
body as it breaks loose, and by recalling it to life through some
powerful interest or some dominating affection.  Jesus expressed the
same thought when he said to the daughter of Jairus: "The maiden is
not dead, but sleepeth"; and of Lazarus: "Our friend is fallen asleep,
and I go to wake him."  To express this resurrectionist system in such
a manner as not to offend common sense, by which we mean
generally-held opinions, let us say that death, when there is no
destruction or essential alteration of the physical organs, is always
preceded by a lethargy of varying duration.  (The resurrection of
Lazarus, if we could admit it as a scientific fact, would prove that
this state may last for four days.<>)

   Let us now come to the secret of the Great Work, which we have
given only in Hebrew, without vowel points, in the "Rituel de la haute
magie."  Here is the complete text in Latin, as one finds in on page
144 of the Sepher Yetzirah, commented by the alchemist Abraham
(Amsterdam, 1642): {216}

                                 SEMITA XXXI

   Vocatur intelligentia perpetua; et quare vocatur ita?  Eo quod
ducit motum solis et lunae juxta constitutionem eorum; utrumque in
orbe sibi conveniente.

                        Rabbi Abraham F.'. D.'. dicit:

   Semita trigesima prima vocatur intelligentia perpetua: et illa
ducit solem et lunam et reliquas stellas et figuras, unum quodque in
orbe suo, et impertit omnibus creatis juxta dispositionem ad signa et

   Here is the French translation of the Hebrew text which we have
transcribed in our ritual:

   "The thirty-first path is called the perpetual intelligence; and it
governs the sun and the moon, and the other stars and figures, each in
its respective orb.  And it distributes what is needful to all created
things, according to their disposition to the signs and figures."

   This text, one sees, is still perfectly obscure for whoever is not
acquainted with the characteristic value of each of the thirty-two
paths.  The thirty-two paths are the ten numbers and the twenty-two
hieroglyphic letters of the Qabalah.  The thirty-first refers to
HB:Shin , which represents the magic lamp, or the light between the
horns of Baphomet.  It is the qabalistic sign of the OD, or astral
light, with its two poles, and its balanced centre.  One knows that in
the language of the alchemist the sun signifies gold, the moon silver,
and that the other stars or planets refer to the other metals.  One
{217} should now be able to understand the thought of the Jew Abraham.

   The secret fire of the masters of alchemy was, then, electricity;
and there is the better half of their grand arcanum; but they knew how
to equilibrate its force by a magnetic influence which they
concentrated in their athanor. This is what results from the obscure
dogmas of Basil Valentine, of Bernard Trevisan, and of Henry Khunrath,
who, all of them, pretended to have worked the transmutation, like
Raymond Lully, like Arnaud de Villeneuve, and like NIcholas Flamel.

   The universal light, when it magnetizes the worlds, is called
astral light; when it forms the metals, one calls it azoth, or
philosophical mercury; when it gives life to animals, it should be
called animal magnetism.

   The brute is subject to the fatalities of this light; man is able
to direct it.

   It is the intelligence which, by adapting the sign to the thought,
creates forms and images.

   The universal light is like the divine imagination, and this world,
which changes ceaselessly, yet ever remaining the same with regard to
the laws of its configuration, is the vast dream of God.

   Man formulates the light by his imagination; he attracts to himself
the light in sufficient quantities to give suitable forms to his
thoughts and even to his dreams; if this light overcomes him, if he
drowns his understanding in the forms which he evokes, he is mad.  But
the fluidic atmosphere of madmen is often a poison for tottering
reason and for exalted imaginations.

   The forms which the over-excited imagination produces {218} in
order to lead astray the understanding, are as real as photographic
images.  One could not see what does not exist.  The phantoms of
dreams, and even the dreams of the waking, are then real images which
exist in the light.

   There exist, besides these, contagious hallucinations.  But we here
affirm something more than ordinary hallucinations.

   If the images attracted by diseased brains are in some sense real,
can they not throw them without themselves, as real as they relieve

   These images projected by the complete nervous organism of the
medium, can they not affect the compete organism of those who,
voluntarily or not, are in nervous sympathy with the medium?

   The things accomplished by Mr. Home prove that all this is

   Now, let us reply to those who think that they see in these
phenomena manifestations of the other world and facts of necromancy.

   We shall borrow our answer from the sacred book of the qabalists,
and in this our doctrine is that of the rabbis who compiled the Zohar.


   The spirit clothes itself to descend, and strips itself to rise.

   In fact:

   Why are created spirits clothed with bodies?

   It is that they must be limited in order to have a possible
existence. Stripped of all body, and become consequently {219} without
limit, created spirits would lose themselves in the infinite, and from
lack of the power to concentrate themselves somewhere, they would be
dead and impotent everywhere, lost as they would be in the immensity
of God.

   All created spirits have, then, bodies, some subtler, some grosser,
according to the surroundings in which they are called to live.

   The soul of a dead man would, then, not be able to live in the
atmosphere of the living, any more than we can live in earth or in

   For an airy, or rather an ethereal, spirit, it would be necessary
to have an artificial body similar to the apparatus of our divers, in
order that it might come to us.

   All that we can see of the dead are the reflections which they have
left in the atmospheric light, light whose imprints we evoke by the
sympathy of our memories.

   The souls of the dead are above our atmosphere.  Our respirable air
becomes earth for them.  This is what the Saviour declares in His
Gospel, when He makes the soul of a saint say:

   "Now the great abyss is established between us, and those who are
above can no longer descend to those who are below."

   The hands which Mr. Home causes to appear are, then, composed of
air coloured by the reflection which his sick imagination attracts and
projects.<<"The luminous agent being also that of heat, one
understands the sudden variations of temperature occasioned by the
abnormal projections or sudden absorptions of the light.  There
follows a sudden atmospheric perturbation, which produces the noise of
storms, and the creaking of woodwork." --- E. L.>> {220}

   One touches them as one sees them; half illusion, half magnetic and
nervous force.

   These, it seems to us, are very precise and very clear

   Let us reason a little with those who support the theory of
apparitions from another world:

   Either those hands are real bodies, or they are illusions.

   If they are bodies, they are, then, not spirits.

   If they are illusions produced by mirages, either in us, or outside
ourselves, you admit my argument.

   Now, one remark!

   It is that all those who suffer from luminous congestion or
contagious somnambulism, perish by a violent or, at least, a sudden

   It is for this reason that one used to attribute to the devil the
power of strangling sorcerers.

   The excellent and worthy Lavater habitually evoked the alleged
spirit of Gablidone.

   He was assassinated.

   A lemonade-seller of Leipzig, Schroepfer, evoked the animated
images of the dead.  He blew out his brains with a pistol.

   One knows what was the unhappy end of Cagliostro.

   A misfortune greater than death itself is the only thing that can
save the life of these imprudent experimenters.

   They may become idiots or madmen, and then they do not die, if one
watches over them with care to prevent them from committing suicide.

   Magnetic maladies are the road to madness; they are {221} always
born from the hypertrophy or atrophy of the nervous system.

  They resemble hysteria, which is one of their varieties, and are
often produced either by excesses of celibacy, or those or exactly the
opposite kind.

   One knows how closely connected with the brain are the organs
charged  by Nature with the accomplishment of her noblest work: those
whose object is the reproduction of being.

   One does not violate with impunity the sanctuary of Nature.

   Without risking his own life, no one lifts the veil of the great

   Nature is chaste, and it is to chastity that she gives the key of

   To give oneself up to impure loves is to plight one's troth to

   Liberty, which is the life of the soul, is only preserved in the
order of Nature.  Every voluntary disorder wounds it, prolonged excess
murders it.

   Then, instead of being guided and preserved by reason, one is
abandoned to the fatalities of the ebb and flow of magnetic light.

   The magnetic light devours ceaselessly, because it is always
creating, and because, in order to produce continually, one must
absorb eternally.

   Thence come homicidal manias and temptations to commit suicide.

   Thence comes that spirit of perversity which Edgar Poe has
described in so impressive and accurate a manner, and which Mr. de
Mirville would be right to call the devil. {222}

   The devil is the giddiness of the intelligence stupefied by the
irresolution of the heart.

   It is a monomania of nothingness, the lure of the abyss;
independently of what it may be according to the decisions of the
Catholic, Apostolic, and Roman faith, which we have not the temerity
to touch.

   As to the reproduction of signs and characters by that universal
fluid, which we call astral light, to deny its possibility would be to
take little account of the most ordinary phenomena of Nature.

   The mirage in the steppes of Russia, the palace of Morgan le Fay,
the figures printed naturally in the heart of stones which Gaffael
calls "gamahes," the monstrous deformities of certain children caused
by impressions of the nightmares of their mothers, all these phenomena
and many others prove that the light is full of reflections and images
which it projects and reproduces according to the evocations of the
imagination, of memory, or of desire. Hallucination is not always an
objectless reverie: as soon as every one sees a thing it is certainly
visible; but if this thing is absurd one must rigorously conclude that
everybody is deceived or hallucinated by a real appearance.

   To say (for example) that in the magnetic parties of Mr. Home real
and living hands come out of the tables, true hands which some see,
others touch, and by which still others feel themselves touched
without seeing them, to say that these really corporeal hands are
hands of spirits, is to speak like children or madmen; it implies a
contradiction in terms.  But to deem that such or such apparitions,
such or such sensations, are produced, is simply to be sincere, and to
mock {223} the mockery of the normal man, even when these normal men
are as witty as this or that editor of this or that comic journal.

   These phenomena of the light which produce apparitions always
appear at epochs when humanity is in labour.  They are phantoms of the
delirium of the world-fever; it is the hysteria of a bored society. 
Virgil tells us in fine verse that in the time of Caesar Rome was full
of spectres; in the time of Vespasian the gates of the Temple of
Jerusalem opened of themselves, and a voice was heard crying, "The
gods depart."  Now, when the gods depart, the devils return. 
Religious feeling transforms itself into superstition when faith is
lost; for souls need to believe, because they thirst for hope.  How
can faith be lost?  How can science doubt the infinite harmony? 
Because the sanctuary of the absolute is always closed for the
majority.  But the kingdom of truth, which is that of God, suffers
violence, and the violent must take it by force.  There exists a
dogma, there exists a key, there exists a sublime tradition; and this
dogma, this key, this tradition is transcendental magic. There only
are found the absolute of knowledge and the eternal bases of law,
guardian against all madness, all superstition and all error, the Eden
of the intelligence, the ease of the heart, and the peace of the soul.
 We do not say this in the hope of convincing the scoffer, but only to
guide the seeker. Courage and good hope to him; he will surely find,
since we ourselves have found.

   The magical dogma is not that of the mediums.  The mediums who
dogmatize can teach nothing but anarchy, since their inspiration is
drawn from a disordered exaltation.  They are always predicting
disasters; they deny hierarchical authority; they pose, like Vintras,
as sovereign pontiffs.  {224} The initiate, on the contrary, respects
the hierarchy before all, he loves and preserves order, he bows before
sincere beliefs, he loves all signs of immortality in faith, and of
redemption by charity, which is all discipline and obedience.  We have
just read a book published under the influence of astral and magnetic
intoxication, and we have been struck by the anarchical tendencies
with which it is filled under a great appearance of benevolence and
religion.  At the head of this book one sees the symbol, or, as the
magi call it, "the signature," of the doctrines which it teaches. 
Instead of the Christian cross, symbol of harmony, alliance and
regularity, one sees the tortuous tendrils of the vine, jutting from
its twisted stem, images of hallucination and of intoxication.

   The first ideas set forth by this book are the climax of the
absurd.  The souls of the dead, it says, are everywhere, and nothing
any longer hems them in.  It is an infinite overcrowded with gods,
returning the one into the other.  The souls can and do communicate
with us by means of tables and hats. And so, no more regulated
instruction, no more priesthood, no more Church, delirium set upon the
throne of truth, oracles which write for the salvation of the human
race the word attributed to Cambronne, great men who leave the
serenity of their eternal destinies to make our furniture dance, and
to hold with us conversations like those which Beroalde de
Verville<> makes them hold, in "Le
Moyen de Parvenir."  All this is a great pity; and yet, in America,
all this is {225} spreading like an intellectual plague.  Young
America raves, she has fever; she is, perhaps, cutting her teeth.  But
France!  France to accept such things!  No, it is not possible, and it
is not so.  But while they refuse the doctrines, serious men should
observe the phenomena, remain calm in the midst of the agitations of
all the fanaticisms (for incredulity also has its own), and judge
after having examined.

   To preserve one's reason in the midst of madmen, one's faith in the
midst of superstitions, one's dignity in the midst of buffoons, and
one's independence among the sheep of Panurge, is of all miracles the
rarest, the finest, and the most difficult to accomplish.

                                  CHAPTER IV


   THE ancients gave different names to these: larvae, lemures
(empuses). They loved the vapour of shed blood, and fled from the
blade of the sword.

   Theurgy evoked them, and the Qabalah recognized them under the name
of elementary spirits.

   They were not spirits, however, for they were mortal.

   They were fluidic coagulations which one could destroy by dividing

   There were a sort of animated mirages, imperfect emanations of
human life. The traditions of Black Magic say that they were born
owing to the celibacy of Adam.  Paracelsus says that the vapours of
the blood of hysterical women people the air with phantoms; and these
ideas are so ancient, that {226} we find traces of them in Hesiod, who
expressly forbids that linen, stained by a pollution of any sort,
should be dried before a fire.

   Persons who are obsessed by phantoms are usually exalted by too
rigorous celibacy, or weakened by excesses.

   Fluidic phantoms are the abortions of the vital light; they are
plastic media without body and without spirit, born from the excesses
of the spirit and the disorders of the body.

   These wandering media may be attracted by certain degenerates who
are fatally sympathetic to them, and who lend them at their own cost a
factitious existence of a more or less durable kind.  They then serve
as supplementary instruments to the instinctive volitions of these
degenerates: never to cure them, always to send them farther astray,
and to hallucinate them more and more.

   If corporeal embryos can take the forms which the imagination of
their mothers gives them, the wandering fluidic embryos ought to be
prodigiously variable, and to transform themselves with an astonishing
facility.  Their tendency to give themselves a body in order to
attract a soul, makes them condense and assimilate naturally the
corporeal molecules which float in the atmosphere.

   Thus, by coagulating the vapour of blood, they remake blood, that
blood which hallucinated maniacs see floating upon pictures or
statues.  But they are not the only ones to see it.  Vintras and Rose
Tamisier are neither impostors nor myopics; the blood really flows;
doctors examine it, analyse it; it is blood, real human blood: whence
comes it?  Can it be formed spontaneously in the atmosphere?  Can it
naturally flow from a marble, from a painted canvas or a host?  No,
{227} doubtless; this blood did once circulate in veins, then it has
been shed, evaporated, dried, the serum has turned into vapour, the
globules into impalpable dust, the whole has floated and whirled into
the atmosphere, and has then been attracted into the current of a
specified electromagnetism.  The serum has again become liquid; it has
taken up and imbibed anew the globules which the astral light has
coloured, and the blood flows.

   Photography proves to us sufficiently that images are real
modifications of light.  Now, there exists an accidental and
fortuitous photography which makes durable impression of mirages
wandering in the atmosphere, upon leaves of trees, in wood, and even
in the heart of stones: thus are formed those natural figures to which
Gaffarel has consecrated several pages in his book of "Curiosites
inouies," those stoned to which he attributes an occult virtue, which
he calls "gamalies;" thus are traced those writings and drawings which
so greatly astonish the observers of fluidic phenomena.  They are
astral photographs traced by the imagination of the mediums with or
without the assistance of the fluidic larvae.

   The existence of these larvae has been demonstrated to us in a
preemptory manner by a rather curious experience.  Several persons, in
order to test the magic power of the American Home, asked him to
summon up relations which they pretended they had lost, but, who, in
reality, had never existed.  The spectres did not fail to reply to
this appeal, and the phenomena which habitually followed the
evocations of the medium were fully manifested.

   This experience is sufficient of itself to convict of tiresome
credulity and of formal error those who believe that spirits {228}
intervene to produce these strange phenomena.  That the dead may
return, it is above all necessary that they should have existed, and
demons would not so easily be the dupes of our mystifications.

   Like all Catholics, we believe in the existence of spirits of
darkness, but we know also that the divine power has given them the
darkness for an eternal prison, and that the Redeemer saw Satan fall
from heaven like lightning.  If the demons tempt us, it is by the
voluntary complicity of our passions, and it is not permitted to them
to make head against the empire of God, and by stupid and useless
manifestations to disturb the eternal order of Nature.

   The diabolical signatures and characters, which are produced
without the knowledge of the medium, are evidently not proofs of a
tacit or formal pact between these degenerates and intelligences of
the abyss.  These signs have served from the beginning to express
astral vertigo, and remain in a state of mirage in the reflections of
the divulged light.  Nature also has its recollections, and sends to
us the same signs to correspond to the same ideas. In all this, there
is nothing either supernatural or infernal.

   "How! do you want me to admit," said to us the Cure Charvoz, the
first vicar of Vintras, "that Satan dares to impress his hideous
stigmata upon consecrated materials, which have become the actual body
of Jesus Christ?"  We declared immediately, that it was equally
impossible for us to pronounce in favour of such a blasphemy; and yet,
as we demonstrated in our articles in the "Estafette," the signs
printed in bleeding characters upon the hosts of Vintras, regularly
consecrated by Charvoz, were those which, in {229} Black Magic, are
absolutely recognized for the signatures of demons.

   Astral writings are often ridiculous or obscene.  The pretended
spirits, when questioned on the greater mysteries of Nature, often
reply by that coarse word which became, so they say, heroic on one
occasion, in the military mouth of Cambronne.  The drawings which
pencils will trace if left to their own devices very often reproduce
shapeless phalli, such as the anaemic hooligan, as one might
picturesquely call him, sketches on the hoardings as he whistles, a
further proof of our hypothesis, that wit in no way presides at those
manifestations, and that it would be above all sovereignly absurd to
recognize in them the intervention of spirits released from the
bondage of matter.

   The Jesuit, Paul Saufidius, who has written on the manners and
customs of the Japanese, tells us a very remarkable story.  A troop of
Japanese pilgrims one day, as they were traversing a desert, saw
coming toward them a band of spectres whose number was equal to that
of the pilgrims, and which walked at the same pace.  These spectres,
at first without shape, and like larvae, took on as they approached
all the appearance of the human body.  Soon they met the pilgrims, and
mingled with them, gliding silently between their ranks.  Then the
Japanese saw themselves double, each phantom having become the perfect
image and, as it were, the mirage of each pilgrim.  The Japanese were
afraid, and prostrated themselves, and the bonze who was conducting
them began to pray for them with great contortions and great cries. 
When the pilgrims rose up again, the phantoms had disappeared, and the
troop of devotees was able to continue {230} its path in peace.  This
phenomenon, whose truth we do not doubt, presents the double
characters of a mirage, and of a sudden projection of astral larvae,
occasioned by the heat of the atmosphere, and the fanatical exhaustion
of the pilgrims.

   Dr. Brierre de Boismont, in his curious treatise, "Trate des
hallucinations," tells us that a man, perfectly sane, who had never
had visions, was tormented one morning by a terrible nightmare: he saw
in his room a mysterious ape horrible to behold, who gnashed his teeth
upon him, and gave himself over to the most hideous contortions.  He
woke with a start, it was already day; he jumped from his bed, and was
frozen with terror on seeing, really present, the frightful object of
his dream.  The monkey was there, the exact image of the monkey of the
nightmare, equally absurd, equally terrible, even making the same
grimaces.  He could not believe his eyes; he remained nearly half an
hour motionless, observing this singular phenomenon, and asking
himself whether he was delirious or mad.  Ultimately, he approached
the phantasm to touch it, and it vanished.

   Cornelius Gemma, in his "Histore critique universelle," says that
in the year 454, in the island of Candia, the phantom of Moses
appeared to some Jews on the sea-side; on his forehead he had luminous
horns, in his hand was his blasting rod; and he invited them to follow
him, showing them with his finger the horizon in the direction of the
Holy Land.  The news of this prodigy spread abroad, and the Israelites
rushed towards the shore in a mob.  All saw, or pretended to see, the
marvellous apparition: they were, in number, twenty thousand,
according to the chronicler, whom we suspect to be slightly
exaggerating in this respect.  Immediately heads {231} grow hot, and
imaginations wild; they believe in a miracle more startling than was
of old the passage of the Red Sea.  The Jews form in a close column,
and run towards the sea; the rear ranks push the front ranks
frantically: they think they see the pretended Mosses walk upon the
water.  A shocking disaster resulted: almost all that multitude was
drowned, and the hallucination was only extinguished with the life of
the greater number of those unhappy visionaries.

   Human thought creates what it imagines; the phantoms of
superstition project their deformities on the astral light, and live
upon the same terrors which give them birth.  That black giant which
reaches its wings from east to west to hide the light from the world,
that monster who devours souls, that frightful divinity of ignorance
and fear --- in a word, the devil, --- is still, for a great multitude
of children of all ages, a frightful reality.  In our "Dogme et rituel
de la haute magie" we represented him as the shadow of God, and in
saying that, we still hid the half of our thought: God is light
without shadow.  The devil is only the shadow of the phantom of God!

   The phantom of God! that last idol of the earth; that
anthropomorphic spectre which maliciously makes himself invisible;
that finite personification of the infinite; that invisible whom one
cannot see without dying --- without dying at least to intelligence
and to reason, since in order to see the invisible, one must be mad;
the phantom of Him who has no body; the confused form of Him who is
without form and without limit; it is in "that" that, without knowing
it, the greater number of believers believe.  He who "is" essentially,
purely, spiritually, without being either absolute being, or an
abstract {232} being, or the collection of beings, the intellectual
infinite in a word, is so difficult to imagine!  Besides, every
imagination makes its creator an idolater; he is obliged to believe in
it, and worship it.  Our spirit should be silent before Him, and our
heart alone has the right to give Him a name: Our Father!


                                   BOOK II

                              MAGICAL MYSTERIES

                                  CHAPTER I

                              THEORY OF THE WILL

   HUMAN life and its innumerable difficulties have for object, in the
ordination of eternal wisdom, the education of the will of man.

   The dignity of man consists in doing what he will, and in willing
the good, in conformity with the knowledge of truth.

   The good in conformity with the true, is the just.

   Justice is the practice of reason.

   Reason is the work of reality.

   Reality is the science of truth.

   Truth is idea identical with being.

   Man arrives at the absolute idea of being by two roads, experience
and hypothesis.

   Hypothesis is probable when it is necessitated by the teachings of
experience; it is improbable or absurd when it is rejected by this

   Experience is science, and hypothesis is faith.

   True science necessarily admits faith; true faith necessarily
reckons with science.

   Pascal blasphemed against science, when he said that by reason man
could not arrive at the knowledge of any truth. {234}

   In fact, Pascal died mad.

   But Voltaire blasphemed no less against science, when he declare
that every hypothesis of faith was absurd, and admitted for the rule
of reason only the witness of the senses.

   Moreover, the last word of Voltaire was this contradictory formula:

   God! that is to say, a Supreme Master, excludes every idea of
liberty, as the school of Voltaire understood it.

   And Liberty, by which is meant an absolute independence of any
master, which excludes all idea of God.

   The word GOD expresses the supreme personification of law, and by
consequence, of duty; and if by the word LIBERTY, you are willing to
accept our interpretation, THE RIGHT OF DOING ONE'S DUTY, we in our
turn will take it for a motto, and we shall repeat, without
contradiction and without error: "GOD AND LIBERTY."

   As there is no liberty for man but in the order which results from
the true and the good, one may say that the conquest of liberty is the
great work of the human soul.  Man, by freeing himself from his evil
passions and their slavery, creates himself, as it were, a second
time.  Nature made him living and suffering; he makes himself happy
and immortal; he thus becomes the representative of divinity upon
earth, and (relatively) exercises its almighty power.

                                   AXIOM I

   Nothing resists the will of man, when he knows the truth, and wills
the good. {235}

                                   AXIOM II

   To will evil, is to will death.  A perverse will is a beginning of

                                  AXIOM III

   To will good with violence, is to will evil, for violence produces
disorder, and disorder produces evil.

                                   AXIOM IV

   One can, and one should, accept evil as the means of good; but one
must never will it or do it, otherwise one would destroy with one hand
what one builds with the other.  Good faith never justifies bad means;
it corrects them when one undergoes them, and condemns them when one
takes them.

                                   AXIOM V

   To have the right to possess always, one must will patiently and

                                   AXIOM VI

   To pass one's life in willing that it is impossible to possess
always, is to abdicate life and accept the eternity of death.

                                  AXIOM VII

   The more obstacles the will surmounts, the stronger it is.  It is
for this reason that Christ glorified poverty and sorrow.

                                  AXIOM VIII

   When the will is vowed to the absurd, it is reproved by eternal

                                   AXIOM IX

   The will of the just man is the will of God himself, and the law of
Nature. {236}

                                   AXIOM X

   It is by the will that the intelligence sees.  If the will is
healthy, the sight is just.  God said: "Let there be light!" and light
is; the will says, "Let the world be as I will to see it!" and the
intelligence sees it as the will has willed.  This is the meaning of
the word, "So be it,"<> which confirms acts
of faith.

                                   AXIOM XI

   When one creates phantoms for oneself, one puts vampires into the
world, and one must nourish these children of a voluntary nightmare
with one's blood, one's life, one's intelligence, and one's reason,
without ever satisfying them.

                                  AXIOM XII

   To affirm and to will what ought to be is to create; to affirm and
will what ought not to be, is to destroy.

                                  AXIOM XIII

   Light<> is an electric fire put by Nature at the service of the will;
it lights those who know how to use it, it burns those who abuse it.

                                  AXIOM XIV

   The empire of the world is the empire of the light.<>

                                   AXIOM XV

   Great intellects whose wills are badly balanced are like comets
which are aborted suns.

                                  AXIOM XVI

   To do nothing is as fatal as to do evil, but it is more cowardly. 
The most unpardonable of mortal sins is inertia.  {237}

                                  AXIOM XVII

   To suffer is to work.  A great sorrow suffered is a progress
accomplished. Those who suffer much live more than those who do not

                                 AXIOM XVIII

   Voluntary death from devotion is not suicide; it is the apotheosis
of the will.

                                  AXIOM XIX

   Fear is nothing but idleness of the will, and for that reason
public opinion scourges cowards.

                                   AXIOM XX

   Succeed in not fearing the lion, and the lion will fear you.  Say
to sorrow: "I will that you be a pleasure, more even than a pleasure,
a happiness."

                                  AXIOM XXI

   A chain of iron is easier to break than a chain of flowers.

                                  AXIOM XXII

   Before saying that a man is happy or unhappy, find out what the
direction of his will has made of him: Tiberius died every day at
Capri, while Jesus proved his immortality and even his divinity on
Calvary and upon the Cross.


                                  CHAPTER II

                            THE POWER OF THE WORD

   It is the word which creates forms; and forms in their turn react
upon the word, in order to modify it and complete it.

   Every word of truth is a beginning of an act of justice.

   One asks if man may sometimes be necessarily driven to evil.  Yes,
when his judgment is false, and consequently his word unjust.

   But one is responsible for a false judgment as for a bad action.

   What falsifies the judgment is selfishness and its unjust vanities.

   The unjust word, unable to realize itself by creation, realizes
itself by destruction.  It must either slay or be slain.

   If it were able to remain without action, it would be the greatest
of all disorders, an abiding blasphemy against truth.

   Such is that idle word of which Christ has said that one will give
account at the Day of Judgment.  A jesting word, a comicality which
"recreates" and causes laughter, is not an idle word.

   The beauty of the word is a splendour of truth.  A true word in
always beautiful, a beautiful word is always true.

   For this reason works of art are always holy when they are
beautiful. {239}

   What does it matter to me that Anacreon should sing of Bathyllus,
if in his verse I hear the notes of that divine harmony which is the
eternal hymn of beauty?  Poetry is pure as the Sun: it spreads its
veil of light over the errors of humanity.  Woe to him who would lift
the veil in order to perceive things ugly!

   The Council of Trent decided that it was permissible for wise and
prudent persons to read the books of the ancients, even those which
were obscene, on account of the beauty of the form.  A statue of Nero
or of Heliogabalus made like a masterpiece of Phidias, would it not be
an absolutely beautiful and absolutely good work? --- and would not he
deserve the execration of the whole world who would propose to break
it because it was the representation of a monster?

   Scandalous statues are those which are badly sculptured, and the
Venus of Milo would be desecrated if one placed her beside some of the
Virgins which they dare to exhibit in certain churches.

   One realizes evil in books of morality ill-written far more than in
the poetry of Catullus or the ingenious Allegories of Apuleius.

   There are no bad books, except those which are badly conceived and
badly executed.

   Every word of beauty is a word of truth.  It is a light
crystallized in speech.

   But in order that the most brilliant light may be produced and made
visible, a shadow is necessary; and the creative word, that it may
become efficacious, needs contradictions.  It must submit to the
ordeal of negation, of sarcasm, and then to that more cruel yet, of
indifference and forgetfulness.  {240} The Master said: "If a corn of
wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; but if it die,
it bringeth forth much fruit."

   Affirmation and negation must, then, marry each other, and from
their union will be born the practical truth, the real and progressive
word.  It is necessity which should constrain the workmen to choose
for the corner-stone that which they had at first despised and
rejected.  Let contradiction, then, never discourage men of
initiative!  Earth is necessary for the ploughshare, and the earth
resists because it is in labour.  It defends itself like all virgins;
it conceives and brings forth slowly like all mothers.  You, then, who
wish to sow a new plant in the field of intelligence, understand and
respect the modesties and reluctances of limited experience and
slow-moving reason.

   When a new word comes into the world, it needs swaddling clothes
and bandages; genius brought it forth, but it is for experience to
nourish it.  Do not fear that it will die of neglect!  Oblivion is for
it a favourable time of rest, and contradictions help it to grow. 
When a sun bursts forth in space it creates worlds or attracts them to
itself.  A single spark of fixed light promises a universe to space.

   All magic is in a word, and that word pronounced qabalistically is
stronger than all the powers of Heaven, Earth and Hell.  With the name
of "Jod he vau he," one commands Nature: kingdoms are conquered in the
name of Adonai, and the occult forces which compose the empire of
Hermes are one and all obedient to him who knows how to pronounce duly
the incommunicable name of Agla.

   In order to pronounce duly the great words of the Qabalah, {241}
one must pronounce them with a complete intelligence, with a will that
nothing checks, an activity that nothing daunts.  In magic, to have
said is to have done; the word begins with letters, it ends with acts.
 One does not really will a thing unless one wills it with all one's
heart, to the point of breaking for it one's dearest affections; and
with all one's forces, to the point of risking one's health, one's
fortune, and one's life.

   It is by absolute devotion that faith proves itself and constitutes
itself. But the man armed with such a faith will be able to move

   The most fatal enemy of our souls is idleness.  Inertia intoxicates
us and sends us to sleep; but the sleep of inertia is corruption and
death.  The faculties of the human soul are like the waves of the
ocean.  To keep them sweet, they need the salt and bitterness of
tears: they need the whirlwinds of Heaven: they need to be shaken by
the storm.

   When, instead of marching upon the path of progress, we wish to
have ourselves carried, we are sleeping in the arms of death.  It is
to us that it is spoken, as to the paralytic man in the Gospel, "Take
up thy bed and walk!" It is for us to carry death away, to plunge it
into life.

   Consider the magnificent and terrible metaphor of St. John; Hell is
a sleeping fire.  It is a life without activity and without progress;
it is sulphur in stagnation: "stagnum ignis et sulphuris."

   The sleeping life is like the idle word, and it is of that that men
will have to give an account in the Day of Judgment.

   Intelligence speaks, and matter stirs.  It will not rest until it
has taken the form given to it by the word.  Behold the Christian
word, how for these nineteen centuries it has put {242} the world to
work!  What battles of giants!  How many errors set forth and
rebutted!  How much deceived and irritated Christianity lies at the
bottom of Protestantism, from the sixteenth century to the eighteenth!
 Human egotism, in despair at its defeats, has whipped up all its
stupidities in turn.  They have re-clothed the Saviour of the world
with every rag and with every mocking purple.  After Jesus the
Inquisitor they have invented the "sans-culotte" Jesus!  Measure if
you can all the tears and all the blood that have flowed; calculate
audaciously all that will yet be shed before the arrival of the
Messianic reign of the Man-God who shall submit at once all passions
to powers and all powers to justice.  THY KINGDOM COME!  For nigh on
nineteen hundred years, over the whole surface of the earth, this has
been the cry of seven hundred million throats, and the Israelites yet
await the Messiah!  He said that he would come, and come he will.  He
came to die, and he has promised to return to live.



   When humanity, by dint of bloody and dolorous experience, has truly
understood this double truth, it will abjure the Hell of selfishness
to enter into the Heaven of devotion and of Christian charity.

   The lyre of Orpheus civilized savage Greece, and the lyre of
Amphion built Thebes the Mysterious, because harmony is truth.  The
whole of Nature is harmony.  But the Gospel is not a lyre: it is the
book of the eternal principles which should and will regulate all the
lyres and all the living harmonies of the universe. {243}

   While the world does not understand these three words: Truth,
Reason, Justice, and these: Duty, Hierarchy, Society, the
revolutionary motto, "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity," will be nothing
but a threefold lie.

                                 CHAPTER III

                            MYSTERIOUS INFLUENCES

  NO middle course is possible.  Every man is either good or bad.  The
indifferent, the lukewarm are not good; they are consequently bad, and
the worst of all the bad, for they are imbecile and cowardly.  The
battle of life is like a civil war; those who remain neutral betray
both parties alike, and renounce the right to be numbered among the
children of the fatherland.

   We all of us breathe in the life of others, and we breathe upon
them in some sort a part of our own existence.  Good and intelligent
men are, unknown to themselves, the doctors of humanity; foolish and
wicked men are public poisoners.

   There are people in whose company one feel refreshed.  Look at that
young society woman!  She chatters, she laughs, she dresses like
everybody else; why, then, is everything in her better and more
perfect?  Nothing is more natural than her manner, nothing franker and
more nobly free than her conversation.  Near her everything should be
at its ease, except bad sentiments, but near her they are impossible. 
She does not seek hearts, but draws them to herself and lifts them up.
 She does not intoxicate, she {244} enchants.  Her whole personality
preaches a perfection more amiable than virtue itself.  She is more
gracious than grace, her acts are easy and inimitable, like fine music
and poetry.  It is of her that a charming woman, too friendly to be
her rival, said after a ball: "I thought I saw the Holy Bible

   Now look upon the other side of the sheet!  See this other woman
who affects the most rigid devotion, and would be scandalized if she
heard the angels sing; but her talk is malevolent, her glance haughty
and contemptuous; when she speaks of virtue she makes vice lovable. 
For her God is a jealous husband, and she makes a great merit of not
deceiving him.  Her maxims are desolating, her actions due to vanity
more than to charity, and one might say after having met her at
church: "I have seen the devil at prayer."

   On leaving the first, one feels one's self full of love for all
that is beautiful, good and generous.  One is happy to have well said
to her all the noble things with which she has inspired you, and to
have been approved by her.<>  One says
to one's self that life is good, since God has bestowed it on such
souls as hers; one is full of courage and of hope.  The other leaves
you weakened and baffled, or perhaps, what is worse, full of evil
designs; she makes you doubt of honour, piety and duty; in her
presence one only escapes from weariness by the door of evil desires. 
One has uttered slander to please her, humiliated one's self to
flatter her pride, one remains discontented with her and with one's

   The lively and certain sentiment of these diverse influences is
proper to well-balanced spirits and delicate consciences, {245} and it
is precisely that which the old ascetic writers called the power of
discerning spirits.

   You are cruel consolers, said Job to his pretended friends.  It is,
in fact, the vicious that afflict rather than console.  They have a
prodigious tact for finding and choosing the most desperate
banalities.  Are you weeping for a broken affection?  How simple you
are! they were playing with you, they did not love you.  You admit
sorrowfully that your child limps; in friendly fashion, they bid you
remark that he is a hunchback.  If he coughs and that alarms you, they
conjure you tenderly to take great care of him, perhaps he is
consumptive.  Has you wife been ill for a long time?  Cheer up, she
will die of it!

   Hope and work is the message of Heaven to us by the voice of all
good souls.  Despair and die, Hell cries to us in every word and
movement, even in all the friendly acts and caresses of imperfect or
degraded beings.

   Whatever the reputation of any one may be, and whatever may be the
testimonies of friendship that that person may give you, if, on
leaving him, you feel yourself less well disposed and weaker, he is
pernicious for you: avoid him.

   Our double magnetism produces in us two sorts of sympathies.  We
need to absorb and to radiate turn by turn.  Our heart loves
contrasts, and there are few women who have loved two men of genius in

   One finds peace through the protection which one's own weariness of
admiration gives; it is the law of equilibrium; but sometimes even
sublime natures are surprised in caprices of vulgarity.  Man, said the
Abbe Gerbert, is the shadow of {246} a God in the body of a beast;
there are in him the friends of the angel and the flatterers of the
animal.  The angel attracts us; but if we are not on our guard, it is
the beast that carries us away: it will even drag us fatally with it
when it is a question of beastliness; that is to say, of the
satisfactions of that life the nourisher of death, which, in the
language of beasts is called "real life."  In religion, the Gospel is
a sure guide; it is not so in business, and there are a great many
people who, if they had to settle the temporal succession of Jesus
Christ, would more willingly come to an agreement with Judas Iscariot
than with St. Peter.

   One admires probity, said Juvenal, and one leaves it to freeze to
death. If such and such a celebrated man, for example, had not
scandalously solicited wealth, would one ever have thought of endowing
his old muse?  Who would have left him legacies?

   Virtue has our admiration, our purse owes it nothing, that great
lady is rich enough without us.  One would rather give to vice, it is
so poor!

   "I do not like beggars, and I only give to the poor who are ashamed
to beg," said one day a man of wit.  "But what do you give them since
you do not know them?"  "I give them my admiration and my esteem, and
I have no need to know them to do that."  "How is it that you need so
much money?" they asked another, "you have no children and no calls on
you."  "I have my poor folk, and I cannot prevent myself from giving
them a great deal of money."  "Make me acquainted with the, perhaps I
will give them something too."  "Oh! you know some of them already, I
have no doubt.  I have seven who cost me an enormous amount, and {247}
an eighth who costs more than the seven others.  The seven are the
seven deadly sing; the eighth is gambling."

   Another dialogue: ---

   "Give me five francs, sir, I am dying of hunger."  "Imbecile! you
are dying of hunger, and you want me to encourage you in so evil a
course?  You are dying of hunger, and you have the impudence to admit
it.  You wish to make me the accomplice of your incapacity, the
abetter of your suicide.  You want to put a premium on wretchedness. 
For whom do you take me?  Do you think I am a rascal like yourself?

   And yet another: ---

   "By the way, old fellow, could you lend me a thousand pounds?  I
want to seduce an honest woman."  "Ah! that is bad, but I can never
refuse anything to a friend.  Here they are.  When you have succeeded
you might give me her address."  That is what is called in England,
and elsewhere, the manners of a gentleman.

   "The man of honour who is out of work steals, and does not beg!"
replied, one day, Cartouche to a passer-by who asked alms of him.  It
is as emphatic as the word which tradition associates with Cambronne,
and perhaps the famous thief and the great general both really replied
in the same manner.

   It was that same Cartouche who offered, on another occasion, of his
own accord and without it being asked of him, twenty thousand pounds
to a bankrupt.  One must act properly to one's brothers.

   Mutual assistance is a law of nature.  To aid those who are like
ourselves is to aid ourselves.  But above mutual {248} assistance
rises a holier and greater law: it is universal assistance, it is

   We all admire and love Saint Vincent de Paul, but we have also a
secret weakness for the cleverness, the presence of mind, and, above
all, the audacity of Cartouche.

   The avowed accomplices of our passions may disgust us by
humiliating us; at our own risk and peril our pride will teach us how
to resist them.  But what is more dangerous for us than our
hypocritical and hidden accomplices?  They follow us like sorrow,
await us like the abyss, surround us like infatuation. We excuse them
in order to excuse ourselves, defending them in order to defend
ourselves, justifying them in order to justify ourselves, and we
submit to them finally because we must, because we have not the
strength to resist our inclinations, because we lack the will to do

   They have possessed themselves of our ascendant, as Paracelsus
says, and where they wish to lead us we shall go.

   They are our bad angels.  We know it in the depths of our
consciousness; but we put up with them, we have made ourselves their
servants that they also may be ours.

   Our passions treated tenderly and flattered, have become
slave-mistresses; and those who serve our passions our valets, and our

   We breathe out our thoughts and breathe in those of others
imprinted in the astral light which has become their electro-magnetic
atmosphere: and thus the companionship of the wicked is less fatal to
the good than that of vulgar, cowardly, and tepid beings.  Strong
antipathy warns us easily, and saves us from the contact of gross
vices; it is not thus with disguised vices vices to a certain extend
diluted {249} and become almost lovable.  An honest woman will
experience nothing but disgust in the society of a prostitute, but she
has everything to fear from the seductions of a coquette.

   One knows that madness is contagious, but the mad are more
particularly dangerous when they are amiable and sympathetic.  One
enters little by little into their circle of ideas, one ends by
understanding their exaggerations, while partaking their enthusiasm,
one grows accustomed to their logic that has lost its way, one ends by
finding that they are not as mad as one thought at first.  Thence to
believing that they alone are right there is but one step. One likes
them, one approves of them, one is as mad as they are.

   The affections are free and may be based on reason, but sympathies
are of fatalism, and very frequently unreasonable.  They depend on the
more or less balanced attractions of the magnetic light, and act on
men in the same way as upon animals.  One will stupidly take pleasure
in the society of a person in whom is nothing lovable, because one is
mysteriously attracted and dominated by him.  And often enough, these
strange sympathies began by lively antipathies; the fluids repelled
each other at first, and subsequently became balanced.

   The equilibrating speciality of the plastic medium of every person
is what Paracelsus calls his "ascendant," and he gives the name of
"flagum" to the particular reflection of the habitual ideas of each
one in the universal light.

   One arrives at the knowledge of the "ascendant" of a person by the
sensitive divination of the "flagum," and by a persistent direction of
the will.  One turns the active side of one's own ascendant towards
the passive side of the ascendant of {250} another when one wishes to
take hold of that other and dominate him.

   The astral ascendant has been divined by other magi, who gave it
the name of "tourbillon" (vortex).

   It is, say they, a current of specialized light, representing
always the same circle of images, and consequently determined and
determining impressions.  These vortices exist for men as for stars. 
"The stars," said Paracelsus, "breathe out their luminous soul, and
attract each other's radiation.  The soul of the earth, prisoner of
the fatal laws of gravitation, frees itself by specializing itself,
and passes through the instinct of animals to arrive at the
intelligence of man.  The active portion of this will is dumb, but it
preserves in writing the secrets of Nature.  The free part can no
longer read this fatal writing without instantaneously losing its
liberty. One does not pass from dumb and vegetative contemplation to
free vibrating thought without changing one's surroundings and one's
organs.  Thence comes the forgetfulness which accompanies birth, and
the vague reminiscences of our sickly intuitions, always analogous to
the visions of our ecstasies and of our dreams."

   This revelation of that great master of occult medicine throws a
fierce light on all the phenomena of somnambulism and of divination. 
There also, for whoever knows how to find it, is the true key of
evocation, and of communication with the fluidic soul of the earth.

   Those persons whose dangerous influence makes itself felt by a
single touch are those who make part of a fluidic association, or who
either voluntarily or involuntarily make use of a current of astral
light which has gone astray. Those, {251} for example, who live in
isolation, deprived of all communication with humanity, and who are
daily in fluidic sympathy with animals gathered together in great
number, as is ordinarily the case with shepherds, are possessed of the
demon whose name is "legion;" in their turn they reign despotically
over the fluid souls of the flocks that are confided to their care:
consequently their good-will or ill-will makes their cattle prosper or
die; and this influence of animal sympathy can be exercised by them
upon human plastic mediums which are ill defended, owing either to a
weak will or a limited intelligence.

   Thus are explained the bewitchments which are habitually made by
shepherds, and the still quite recent phenomena of the Presbytery of

   Cideville is a little village of Normandy, where a few years ago
were produced phenomena like those which have since occurred under the
influence of Mr. Home.  M. de Mirville has studied them carefully, and
M. Gougenet Desmousseaux has reprinted all the details in a book,
published in 1854, entitled "Moeurs et pratiques des demons."  The
most remarkable thing in this latter author is that he seems to divine
the existence of the plastic medium or the fluidic body.  "We have
certainly not two souls," said he, "but perhaps we have two bodies." 
Everything that he says, in fact, would seem to prove this hypothesis.
 He saw a shepherd whose fluidic form haunted a Presbytery, and who
was wounded at a distance by blows inflicted on his astral larva.

   We shall here ask of MM. de Mirville and Gougenet Desmousseaux if
they take this shepherd for the devil, and if, far or near, the devil
such as they conceive him can be scratched {252} or wounded.  At that
time, in Normandy, the magnetic illnesses of mediums were hardly
known, and this unhappy sleep- walker, who ought to have been cared
for an cured, was roughly treated and even beaten, not even in his
fludic appearance, but in his proper person, by the Vicar himself. 
That is, one must agree, a singular kind of exorcism!  If those
violences really took place, and if they may be imputed to a Churchman
whom one considers, and who may be, for all we know, very good and
very respectable, let us admit that such writers as MM. de Mirville
and Gougenet Desmousseaux make themselves not a little his

   The laws of physical life are inexorable, and in his animal nature
man is born a slave to fatality; it is by dint of struggles against
his instincts that he may win moral freedom.  Two different existences
are then possible for us upon the earth; one fatal, the other free. 
The fatal being is the toy or instrument of a force which he does not
direct.  Now, when the instruments of fatality meet and collide, the
stronger breaks or carries away the weaker; truly emancipated beings
fear neither bewitchments nor mysterious influences.

   You may reply that an encounter with Cain may be fatal for Abel.
Doubtless; but such a fatality is an advantage to the pure and holy
victim, it is only a misfortune for the assassin.

   Just as among the righteous there is a great community of virtues
and merits, there is among the wicked an absolute solidarity of fatal
culpability and necessary chastisement.  Crime resides in the
tendencies of the heart. Circumstances which are almost always
independent of the will are the only causes of the gravity of the
acts.  If fatality had made Nero {253} a slave, he would have become
an actor or a gladiator, and would not have burned Rome: would it be
to him that one should be grateful for that?

   Nero was the accomplice of the whole Roman people, and those who
should have prevented them incurred the whole responsibility for the
frenzies of this monster.  Seneca, Burrhus, Thrasea, Corbulon, theirs
is the real guilt of that fearful reign; great men who were either
selfish or incapable!  The only thing they knew was how to die.

   If one of the bears of the Zoological Gardens escaped and devoured
several people, would one blame him or his keepers?

   Whoever frees himself from the common errors of mankind is obliged
to pay a ransom proportional to the sum of these errors: Socrates pays
for Aneitus, and Jesus was obliged to suffer a torment whose terror
was equal to the whole treason of Judas.

   Thus, by paying the debts of fatality, hard-won liberty purchases
the empire of the world; it is hers to bind and to unbind.  God has
put in her hands the keys of Heaven and of Hell.

   You men who abandon brutes to themselves wish them to devour you.

   The rabble, slaves of fatality, can only enjoy liberty by absolute
obedience to the will of free men; they ought to work for those who
are responsible for them.

   But when the brute governs brutes, when the blind leads the blind,
when the leader is as subject to fatality as the masses, what must one
expect?  What but the most shocking catastrophes?  In that we shall
never be disappointed.

   By admitting the anarchical dogmas of 1789, Louis XVI {254}
launched the State upon a fatal slope.  From that moment all the
crimes of the Revolution weighed upon him alone; he alone had failed
in his duty.  Robespierre and Marat only did what they had to do. 
Girondins and Montagnards killed each other in the workings of
fatality, and their violent deaths were so many necessary
catastrophes; at that epoch there was but one great and legitimate
execution, really sacred, really expiatory: that of the King.  The
principle of royalty would have fallen if that too weak price had
escaped.  But a transaction between order and disorder was impossible.
 One does not inherit from those whom one murders; one robs them; and
the Revolution rehabilitated Louis XVI by assassinating him.  After so
many concessions, so many weaknesses, so many unworthy abasements,
that man, consecrated a second time by misfortune, was able at least
to say, as he walked to the scaffold: "The Revolution is condemned,
and I am always the King of France"!

   To be just is to suffer for all those who are not just, but it is
life: to be wicked is to suffer for one's self without winning life;
it is to deceive one's self, to do evil, and to win eternal death.

   To recapitulate: Fatal influences are those of death.  Living
influences are those of life.  According as we are weaker or stronger
in life, we attract or repel witchcraft.  This occult power is only
too real, but intelligence and virtue will always find the means to
avoid its obsessions and its attacks. {255}

                                  CHAPTER IV

                           MYSTERIES OF PERVERSITY

   HUMAN equilibrium is composed of two attractions, one towards
death, the other towards life.  Fatality is the vertigo which drags us
to the abyss; liberty is the reasonable effort which lifts us above
the fatal attractions of death.  What is mortal sin?  It is apostasy
from our own liberty; it is to abandon ourselves to the law of
inertia.  An unjust act is a compact with injustice; now, every
injustice is an abdication of intelligence.  We fall from that moment
under the empire of force whose reactions always crush everything
which is unbalanced.

   The love of evil and the formal adhesion of the will to injustice
are the last efforts of the expiring will.  Man, whatever he may do,
is more than a brute, and he cannot abandon himself like a brute to
fatality.  He must choose.  He must love.  The desperate soul that
thinks itself in love with death is still more alive than a soul
without love.  Activity for evil can and should lead back a man to
good, by counter-stroke and by reaction.  The true evil, that for
which there is no remedy, is inertia.<>

   The abysses of grace correspond to the abysses of perversity.  God
has often made saints of scoundrels; but He has never done anything
with the half- hearted and the cowardly.

   Under penalty of reprobation, one must work, one must act.  Nature,
moreover, sees to this, and if we will not march on with all our
courage towards life, she flings us with all {256} her forces towards
death.  She drags those who will not walk.

   A man whom one may call the great prophet of drunkards, Edgar Poe,
that sublime madman, that genius of lucid extravagance, has depicted
with terrifying reality the nightmares of perversity. ...

   "I killed the old man because he squinted."  "I did that because I
ought not to have done it."

   There is the terrible antistrophe of Tertullian's "Credo quia

   To brave God and to insult Him, is a final act of faith.<>  "The dead praise thee not, O Lord,"
said the Psalmist; and we might add if we dared: "The dead do not
blaspheme thee."

   "O my son!" said a father as he leaned over the bed of his child
who had fallen into lethargy after a violent access of delirium:
"insult me again, beat me, bite me, I shall feel that you are still
alive, but do not rest for ever in the frightful silence of the tomb!"

   A great crime always comes to protest against great lukewarmness. 
A hundred thousand good priests, had their charity been more active,
might have prevented the crime of the wretch Verger.  The Church has
the right to judge, condemn and punish an ecclesiastic who causes
scandal; but she has not the right to abandon him to the frenzies of
despair and the temptations of misery and hunger.

   Nothing is so terrifying as nothingness, and if one could ever
formulate the conception of it, if it were possible to admit it, Hell
would be a thing to hope for.

   This is why Nature itself seeks and imposes expiation as a remedy;
that is why chastisement is a chastening, as that {257} great Catholic
Count Joseph de Maistre so well understood; this is why the penalty of
death is a natural right, and will never disappear from human laws. 
The stain of murder would be indelible if God did not justify the
scaffold; the divine power, abdicated by society and usurped by
criminals, would belong to them without dispute. Assassination would
then become a virtue when it exercised the reprisals of outraged
nature.  Private vengeance would protest against the absence of public
expiation, and from the splinters of the broken sword of justice
anarchy would forge its daggers.

   "If God did away with Hell, men would make another in order to defy
Him," said a good priest to us one day.  He was right: and it is for
that reason that Hell is so anxious to be done away with. 
Emancipation! is the cry of every vice.  Emancipation of murder by the
abolition of the pain of death; emancipation of prostitution and
infanticide by the abolition of marriage; emancipation of idleness and
rapine by the abolition of property. ...  So revolves the whirlwind of
perversity until it arrives at this supreme and secret formula:
Emancipation of death by the abolition of life!

   It is by the victories of toil that one escapes from the fatalities
of sorrow.  What we call death is but the eternal parturition of
Nature. Ceaselessly she re-absorbs and takes again to her breast all
that is not born of the spirit.  Matter, in itself inert, can only
exist by virtue of perpetual motion, and spirit, naturally volatile,
can only endure by fixing itself. Emancipation from the laws of
fatality by the free adhesion of the spirit to the true and good, is
what the Gospel calls the spiritual birth; the re-absorption into the
eternal bosom of Nature is the second death. {258}

   Unemancipated beings are drawn towards this second death by a fatal
gravitation; the one drags the other, as the divine Michel Angelo has
made us see so clearly in his great picture of the Last Judgment; they
are clinging and tenacious like drowning men, and free spirits must
struggle energetically against them, that their flight may not be
hindered by them, that they may not be pulled back to Hell.

   This war is as ancient as the world; the Greeks figured it under
the symbols of Eros and Anteros, and the Hebrews by the antagonism of
Cain and Abel.  It is the war of the Titans and the Gods.  The two
armies are everywhere invisible, disciplined and always ready for
attack or counterattack.  Simple-minded folk on both sides, astonished
at the instant and unanimous resistance that they meet, begin to
believe in vast plots cleverly organized, in hidden, all-powerful
societies.  Eugene Sue invents Rodin;<>
churchmen talk of the Illuminati and of the Freemasons; Wronski dreams
of his bands of mystics, and there is nothing true and serious beneath
all that but the necessary struggle of order and disorder, of the
instincts and of thought; the result of that struggle is balance in
progress, and the devil always contributes, despite himself, to the
glory of St. Michael.

   Physical love is the most perverse of all fatal passions.  It is
the anarchist of anarchists; it knows neither law, duty, truth nor
justice.  It would make the maiden walk over the corpses of her
parents.  It is an irrepressible intoxication; a furious madness.  It
is the vertigo of fatality seeking new victims; the cannibal
drunkenness of Saturn who wishes to {259} become a father in order
that he may have more children to devour.  To conquer love is to
triumph over the whole of Nature.  To submit it to justice is to
rehabilitate life by devoting it to immortality; thus the greatest
works of the Christian revelation are the creation of voluntary
virginity and the sanctification of marriage.

   While love is nothing but a desire and an enjoyment, it is  mortal.
 In order to make itself eternal it must become a sacrifice, for then
it becomes a power and a virtue.<>  It is the struggle of Eros and
Anteros which produces the equilibrium of the world.

   Everything that over-excites sensibility leads to depravity and
crime. Tears call for blood.  It is with great emotions as with strong
drink; to use them habitually is to abuse them.  Now, every abuse of
the emotions perverts the moral sense; one seeks them for their own
sakes; one sacrifices everything in order to procure them for one's
self.  A romantic woman will easily become an Old Bailey heroine.  She
may even arrive at the deplorable and irreparable absurdity of killing
herself in order to admire herself, and pity herself, in seeing
herself die!

   Romantic habits lead women to hysteria and men to melancholia. 
Manfred, Rene, Lelia are types of perversity only the more profound in
that they argue on behalf of their unhealthy pride, and make poems of
their dementia.  One asks one's self with terror what monster might be
born from the coupling of Manfred and Lelia!

   The loss of the moral sense is a true insanity; the man who does
not, first of all, obey justice no longer belongs to himself; he walks
without a light in the night of his existence; {260} he shakes like
one in a dream, a prey to the nightmare of his passions.

   The impetuous currents of instinctive life and the feeble
resistances of the will form an antagonism so distinct that the
qabalists hypothesized the super-foetation of souls; that is to say,
they believed in the presence in one body of several souls who dispute
it with each other and often seek to destroy it.  Very much as the
shipwrecked sailors of the "Medusa," when they were disputing the
possession of the too small raft, sought to sink it.

   It is certain that, in making one's self the servant of any current
whatever, of instincts or even of ideas, one gives up one's
personality, and becomes the slave of that multitudinous spirit whom
the Gospel calls "legion." Artists know this well enough.  Their
frequent evocations of the universal light enervate them.  They become
"mediums," that is to say, sick men.  The more success magnifies them
in public opinion, the more their personality diminishes.  They become
crotchety, envious, wrathful.  They do not admit that any merit, even
in a different sphere, can be placed besides theirs; and, having
become unjust, they dispense even with politeness.  To escape this
fatality, really great men isolate themselves from all comradeship,
knowing it to be death to liberty.  They save themselves by a proud
unpopularity from the contamination of the vile multitude.  If Balzac
had been during his life a man of a clique or of a party, he would not
have remained after his death the great and universal genius of our

   The light illuminates neither things insensible nor closed eyes, or
at least it only illuminates them for the profit of those who see. 
The word of Genesis, "Let there be light!" {261} is the cry of victory
with which intelligence triumphs over darkness.  This word is sublime
in effect because it expresses simply the greatest and most marvellous
thing in the world: the creation of intelligence by itself, when,
calling its powers together, balancing its faculties, it says: I wish
to immortalize myself with the sight of the eternal truth.  Let there
be light! and there is light.  Light, eternal as God, begins every day
for all eyes that are open to see it.  Truth will be eternally the
invention and the creation of genius; it cries: Let there be light!
and genius itself is, because light is.  Genius is immortal because it
understands that light is eternal.  Genius contemplates truth as its
work because it is the victor of light, and immortality is the triumph
of light because it will be the recompense and crown of genius.

   But all spirits do not see with justness, because all hearts do not
will with justice.  There are souls for whom the true light seems to
have no right to be.  They content themselves with phosphorescent
visions, abortions of light, hallucinations of thought; and, loving
these phantoms, fear the day which will put them to flight, because
they feel that, the day not being made for their eyes, they would fall
back into a deeper darkness.  It is thus that fools first fear, then
calumniate, insult, pursue and condemn the sages.  One must pity them,
and pardon them, for they know not what they do.

   True light rests and satisfies the soul; hallucination, on the
contrary, tires it and worries it.  The satisfactions of madness are
like those gastronomic dreams of hungry men which sharpen their hunger
without ever satisfying it.  Thence are born irritations and troubles,
discouragements and despairs. --- Life is always a lie to us, say the
disciples of {262} Werther, and therefore we wish to die!  Poor
children, it is not death that you need, it is life.  Since you have
been in the world you have died every day; is it from the cruel
pleasure of annihilation that you would demand a remedy for the
annihilation of your pleasure?  No, life has never deceived you, you
have not yet lived.  What you have been taking for life is but the
hallucinations and the dreams of the first slumber of death!

   All great criminals have hallucinated themselves on purpose; and
those who hallucinate themselves on purpose may be fatally led to
become great criminals.  Our personal light specialized, brought
forth, determined by our own overmastering affection, is the germ of
our paradise or of our Hell.  Each one of us (in a sense) conceives,
bears, and nourishes his good or evil angel. The conception of truth
gives birth in us to the good genius; intentional untruth hatches and
brings up nightmares and phantoms.  Everyone must nourish his
children; and our life consumes itself for the sake of our thoughts.
Happy are those who find again immortality in the creations of their
soul! Woe unto them who wear themselves out to nourish falsehood and
to fatten death! for every one will reap the harvest of his own

   There are some unquiet and tormented creature whose influence is
disturbing and whose conversation is fatal.  In their presence one
feels one's self irritated, and one leaves their presence angry; yet,
by a secret perversity, one looks for them, in order to experience the
disturbance and enjoy the malevolent emotions which they give us. 
Such persons suffer from the contagious maladies of the spirit of

   The spirit of perversity has always for its secret motive {263} the
thirst of destruction, and its final aim is suicide.  The murderer of
Elisabide, on his own confession, not only felt the savage need of
killing his relations and friends, but he even wished, had it been
possible --- he said it in so many words at his trial --- "to burst
the globe like a cooked chestnut."  Lacenaire, who spent his days in
plotting murders, in order to have the means of passing his nights in
ignoble orgies or in the excitement of gambling, boasted aloud that he
had lived.  He called that living, and he sang a hymn to the
guillotine, which he called his beautiful betrothed, and the world was
full of imbeciles who admired the wretch!  Alfred de Musset, before
extinguishing himself in drunkenness, wasted one of the finest talents
of his century in songs of cold irony and of universal disgust.  The
unhappy man had been bewitched by the breath of a profoundly perverse
woman, who, after having killed him, crouched like a ghoul upon his
body and tore his winding sheet. We asked one day, of a young writer
of this school, what his literature proved.  It proves, he replied
frankly and simply, that one must despair and die.  What apostleship,
and what a doctrine!  But these are the necessary and regular
conclusions of the spirit of perversity; to aspire ceaselessly to
suicide, to calumniate life and nature, to invoke death every day
without being able to die.  This is eternal Hell, it is the punishment
of Satan, that mythological incarnation of the spirit of perversity;
the true translation into French of the Greek word "Diabolos," or
devil, is "le pervers --- the perverse."

   Here is a mystery which debauchees do not suspect.  It is this: one
cannot enjoy even the material pleasures of life but by virtue of the
moral sense. Pleasure is the music of the {264} interior harmonies;
the senses are only its instruments, instruments which sound false in
contact with a degraded soul. The wicked can feel nothing, because
they can love nothing: in order to love one must be good. 
Consequently for them everything is empty, and it seems to them that
Nature is impotent, because they are so themselves; they doubt
everything because they know nothing; they blaspheme everything
because they taste nothing; they caress in order to degrade; they
drink in order to get drunk; they sleep in order to forget; they wake
in order to endure mortal boredom: thus will live, or rather thus will
die, every day he who frees himself from every law and every duty in
order to make himself the slave of his passions.  The world, and
eternity itself, become useless to him who makes himself useless to
the world and to eternity.

   Our will, by acting directly upon our plastic medium, that is to
say, upon the portion of astral life which is specialized in us, and
which serves us for the assimilation and configuration of the elements
necessary to our existence; our will, just or unjust, harmonious or
perverse, shapes the medium in its own image and gives it beauty in
conformity with what attracts us.  Thus moral monstrosity produces
physical ugliness; for the astral medium, that interior architect of
our bodily edifice, modifies it ceaselessly according to our real or
factitious needs.  It enlarges the belly and the jaws of the greedy,
thins the lips of the miser, makes the glances of impure women
shameless, and those of the envious and malicious venomous.  When
selfishness has prevailed in the soul, the look becomes cold, the
features hard: the harmony of form disappears, and according to the
absorption or radiant speciality of this {265} selfishness, the limbs
dry up or become encumbered with fat.  Nature, in making of our body
the portrait of our soul, guarantees its resemblance for ever, and
tirelessly retouches it.  You pretty women who are not good, be sure
that you will not long remain beautiful.  Beauty is the loan which
Nature makes to virtue.  If virtue is not ready when it falls due, the
lender will pitilessly take back Her capital.

   Perversity, by modifying the organism whose equilibrium it
destroys, creates at the same time a fatality of needs which urges it
to its own destruction, to its death.  The less the perverse man
enjoys, the more thirsty of enjoyment he is.  Wine is like water for
the drunkard, gold melts in the hands of the gambler; Messalina tires
herself out without being satiated.  The pleasure which escapes them
changes itself for them into a long irritation and desire.  The more
murderous are their excesses, the more it seems to them that supreme
happiness is at hand. ... One more bumper of strong drink, one more
spasm, one more violence done to Nature...  Ah! at last, here is
pleasure; here is life ... and their desire, in the paroxysm of its
insatiable hunger, extinguishes itself for ever in death.


                                 FOURTH PART


                                  OF SCIENCE


   THE lofty sciences of the Qabalah and of Magic promise man an
exceptional, real, effective, efficient power, and one should regard
them as false and vain if they do not give it.

   Judge the teachers by their works, said the supreme Master.  This
rule of judgment is infallible.

   If you wish me to believe in what you know, show me what you do.

   God, in order to exalt man to moral emancipation, hides Himself
from him and abandons to him, after a fashion, the government of the
world.  He leaves Himself to be guessed by the grandeurs and harmonies
of nature, so that man may progressively make himself perfect by ever
exalting the idea that he makes for himself of its author.

   Man knows God only by the names which he gives to that Being of
beings, and does not distinguish Him but by the images of Him which he
endeavours to trace.  He is then in a manner the creator of Him Who
has created him.  He believes himself the mirror of God, and by
indefinitely enlarging his own mirage, he thinks that he may be able
to sketch in infinite space the shadow of Him Who is without body,
without shadow, and without space.  {267}

programme more daring than the dream of Prometheus.  Its expression is
bold to the point of impiety, its thought ambitious to the point of
madness.  Well, this programme is only paradoxical in its form, which
lends itself to a false and sacrilegious interpretation.  In one sense
it is perfectly reasonable, and the science of the adepts promises to
realize it, and to accomplish it in perfection.

   Man, in effect, creates for himself a God corresponding to his own
intelligence and his own goodness; he cannot raise his ideal higher
than his moral development permits him to do.  The God whom he adores
is always an enlargement of his own reflection.  To conceive the
absolute of goodness and justice is to be one's self exceeding just
and good.

   The moral qualities of the spirit are riches, and the greatest of
all riches.  One must acquire them by strife and toil.  One may bring
this objection, the inequality of aptitudes; some children are born
with organisms nearer to perfection.  But we ought to believe that
such organisms result from a more advanced work of Nature, and the
children who are endowed with them have acquired them, if not by their
own efforts, at least by the consolidated works of the human beings to
whom their existence is bound.  It is a secret of Nature, and Nature
does nothing by chance; the possession of more developed intellectual
faculties, like that of money and land, constitutes an indefeasible
right of transmission and inheritance.

   Yes, man is called to complete the work of his creator, and every
instant employed by him to improve himself or to {268} destroy
himself, is decisive for all eternity.  It is by the conquest of an
intelligence eternally clear and of a will eternally just, that he
constitutes himself as living for eternal life, since nothing survives
injustice and error but the penalty of their disorder.  To understand
good is to will it, and on the plane of justice to will is to do.  For
this reason the Gospel tells us that men will be judged according to
their works.

   Our works make us so much what we are, that our body itself, as we
have said, receives the modification, and sometimes the complete
change, of its form from our habits.

   A form conquered, or submitted to, becomes a providence, or a
fatality, for all one's existence.  Those strange figures which the
Egyptians gave to the human symbols of divinity represent the fatal
forms.  Typhon has a crocodile's head.  He is condemned to eat
ceaselessly in order to fill his hippopotamus belly.  Thus he is
devoted, by his greed and his ugliness, to eternal destruction.

   Man can kill or vivify his faculties by negligence or by abuse.  He
can create for himself new faculties by the good use of those which he
has received from Nature.  People often say that the affections will
not be commanded, that faith is not possible for all, that one does
not re-make one's own character.  All these assertions are true only
for the idle or the perverse.  One can make one's self faithful,
pious, loving, devoted, when one wishes sincerely to be so.  One can
give to one's spirit the calm of justness, as to one's will the
almighty power of justice.  Once can reign in Heaven by virtue of
faith, on earth by virtue of science.  The man who knows how to
command himself is king of all Nature.  {269}

   We are going to state forthwith, in this last book, by what means
the true initiates have made themselves the masters of life, how they
have overcome sorrow and death; how they work upon themselves and
others the transformation of Proteus; how they exercise the divining
power of Apollonius; how they make the gold of Raymond Lully and of
Flamel; how in order to renew their youth they possess the secrets of
Postel the Re-arisen, and those alleged to have been in the keeping of
Cagliostro.  In short, we are going to speak the last word of magic.

                                  CHAPTER I




   THE Bible tells us that King Nebuchadnezzar, at the highest point
of his power and his pride, was suddenly changed into a beast.

   He fled into savage places, began to eat grass, let his beard and
hair grow, as well as his nails, and remained in this state for seven

   In our "Dogme et rituel de la haute magie," we have said what we
think of the mysteries of lycanthropy, or the metamorphosis of men
into werewolves.

   Everyone knows the fable of Circe and understands its allegory.

   The fatal ascendant of one person on another is the true wand of

   One knows that almost all human physiognomies bear a resemblance to
one animal or another, that is to say, the "signature" of a
specialized instinct.

   Now, instincts are balanced by contrary instincts, and dominated by
instincts stronger than those.

   In order to dominate sheep, the dog plays upon their fear of

   If you are a dog, and you want a pretty little cat to love you, you
have only one means to take: to metamorphose yourself into a cat.

   But how!  By observation, imitation and imagination.  We think that
our figurative language will be understood for once, and we recommend
this revelation to all who wish to magnetize: it is the deepest of all
the secrets of their art.

   Here is the formula in technical terms:

   "To polarize one's own animal light, in equilibrated antagonism
with the contrary pole."


   To concentrate in one's self the special qualities of absorption in
order to direct their rays towards an absorbing focus, and vice versa.

   This government of our magnetic polarization may be done by the
assistance of the animal forms of which we have spoken; they will
serve to fix the imagination.

   Let us give an example:

   You wish to act magnetically upon a person polarized like yourself,
which, if you are a magnetizer, you will divine at the first contact:
only that person is a little less strong that you {271} are, a mouse,
while you are a rat.  Make yourself a cat, and you will capture it.

   In one of the admirable stories which, though he did not invent it,
he has told better than anybody, Perrault puts upon the stage a cat,
which cunningly induces an ogre to change himself into a mouse, and
the thing is no sooner done, than the mouse is crunched by the cat. 
The "Tales of Mother Goose," like the "Golden Ass" of Apuleius, are
perhaps true magical legends, and hide beneath the cloak of childish
fairy tales the formidable secrets of science.

   It is a matter of common knowledge that magnetizers give to pure
water the properties and taste of wine, liqueurs and every conceivable
drug, merely by the laying-on of hands, that is to say, by their will
expressed in a sign.

   One knows, too, that those who tame fierce animals conquer lions by
making themselves mentally and magnetically stronger and fiercer than

   Jules Gerard, the intrepid hunter of the African lion, would be
devoured if he were afraid.  But, in order not to be afraid of a lion,
one must make one's self stronger and more savage than the animal
itself by an effort of imagination and of will.  One must say to one's
self: It is I who am the lion, and in my presence this animal is only
a dog who ought to tremble before me.

   Fourier imagined anti-lions; Jules Gerard has realized that chimera
of the phanlasterian<>

   But, one will say, in order not to fear lions, it is enough to be a
man of courage and well armed.  {272}

   No, that is not enough.  One must know one's self by heart, so to
speak, to be able to calculate the leaps of the animal, divining its
stratagems, avoiding its claws, foreseeing its movements, to be in a
word past-master in lioncraft, as the excellent La Fontaine might have

   Animals are the living symbols of the instincts and passions of
men.  If you make a man timid, you change him into a hare.  If, on the
contrary, you drive him to ferocity, you make a tiger of him.

   The wand of Circe is the power of fascination which woman
possesses; and the changing of the companions of Ulysses into hogs is
not a story peculiar to that time.

   But no metamorphosis may be worked without destruction.  To change
a hawk into a dove, one must first kill it, then cut it to pierces, so
as to destroy even the least trace of its first form, and then boil it
in the magic bath of Medea.

   Observe how modern hierophants proceed in order to accomplish human
regeneration; how, for example, in the Catholic religion, they go to
work in order to change a man more or less weak and passionate into a
stoical missionary of the Society of Jesus.

   There is the great secret of that venerable and terrible Order,
always misunderstood, often calumniated, and always sovereign.

   Read attentively the book entitled, "The Exercises of St.
Ignatius," and note with what magical power that man of genius
operates the realization of faith.

   He orders his disciples to see, to touch, to smell, to taste
invisible things.  He wishes that the senses should be exalted during
prayer to the point of voluntary hallucination.  {273} You are
meditating upon a mystery of faith; St. Ignatius wishes, in the first
place, that you should create a place, dream of it, see it, touch it. 
If it is hell, he gives you burning rocks to touch, he makes you swim
in shadows thick as pitch, he puts liquid sulphur on your tongue, he
fills your nostrils with an abominable stench, he shows you frightful
tortures, and makes you hear groans superhuman in their agony; he
commands your will to create all that by exercises obstinately
persevered in.  Every one carries this out in his own fashion, but
always in the way best suited to impress him.  It is not the hashish
intoxication which was useful to the knavery of the Old Man of the
Mountain; it is a dream without sleep, an hallucination without
madness, a reasoned and willed vision, a real creation of intelligence
and faith.  Thence-forward, when he preaches, the Jesuit can say:
"What we have seen with our eyes, what we have heard with our ears,
and what our hands have handled, that do we declare unto you."  The
Jesuit thus trained is in communion with a circle of wills exercised
like his own; consequently each of the fathers is as strong as the
Society, and the Society is stronger than the world.

                                  CHAPTER II




   ONE knows that a sober, moderately busy, and perfectly regular life
usually prolongs existence; but in our opinion, {274} that is little
more than the prolongation of old age, and one has the right to ask
from the science which we profess other privileges and other secrets.

   To be a long time young, or even to become young again, that is
what would appear desirable and precious to the majority of men.  It
is possible?  We shall examine the question.

   The famous Count of Saint-Germain is dead, we do not doubt, but no
one ever saw him grow old.  He appeared always of the age of forty
years, and at the time of his greatest celebrity, he pretended to be
over eighty.

   Ninon de l'Enclos, in her very old age, was still a young,
beautiful and seductive woman.  She died without having grown old.

   Desbarrolles, the celebrated palmist, has been for a long while for
everybody a man of thirty-five years.  His birth certificate would
speak very differently if he dared to show it, but no one would
believe it.

   Cagliostro always appeared the same age.  He pretended to possess
not only an elixir which gave to the old, for an instant, all the
vigour of youth; but he also prided himself on being able to operate
physical regeneration by means which we have detailed and analysed in
our "History of Magic."

   Cagliostro and the Count of Saint-Germain attributed the
preservation of their youth to the existence and use of the universal
medicine, that medicament uselessly sought by so many hermetists and

   An Initiate of the sixteenth century, the good and learned William
Postel, never pretended that he possessed the great arcanum of the
hermetic philosophy; and yet after having {275} been seen old and
broken, he reappeared with a bright complexion, without wrinkles, his
beard and hair black, his body agile and vigorous.  His enemies
pretended that he roughed, and dyed his hair; for scoffers and false
savants must find some sort of explanation for the phenomena which
they do not understand.

   The great magical means of preserving the youth of the body is to
prevent the soul from growing old by preserving preciously that
original freshness of sentiments and thoughts which the corrupt world
calls illusions, and which we shall call the primitive mirages of
eternal truth.

   To believe in happiness upon earth, in friendship, in love, in a
maternal Providence which counts all our steps, and will reward all
our tears, is to be a perfect dupe, the corrupt world will say; it
does not see that it is itself who is the dupe, believing itself
strong in depriving itself of all the delights of the soul.

   To believe in moral good is to possess that good: for this reason
the Saviour of the world promises the kingdom of heaven to those who
should make themselves like little children.  What is childhood?  It
is the age of faith. The child knows nothing yet of life; and thus he
radiates confident immortality.  Is it possible for him to doubt the
devotion, the tenderness, the friendship, and the love of Providence
when he is in the arms of his mother?

   Become children in heart, and you will remain young in body.

   The realities of God and nature surpass infinitely in beauty and
goodness all the imagination of men.  It is thus that the world-weary
are people who have never known how to be happy; and those who are
disillusioned prove by their dislikes {276} that they have only drunk
of muddy streams.  To enjoy even the animal pleasures of life one must
have the moral sense; and those who calumniate existence have
certainly abused it.

   High magic, as we have proved, leads man back to the laws of the
purest morality.  Either he finds a thing holy or makes it holy, says
an adept --- "Vel sanctum invenit, vel sanctum facit;" because it
makes us understand that in order to be happy, even in this world, one
must be holy.

   To be holy! that is easy to say; but how give one's self faith when
one no longer believes?  How re-discover a taste for virtue in a heart
faded by vice?

   One must have recourse to the four words of science: to know, to
dare, to will, and to keep silence.

   One must still one's dislikes, study duty, and begin by practising
it as though one loved it.

   You are an unbeliever, and you wish to make yourself a Christian?

   Perform the exercises of a Christian, pray regularly, using the
Christian formulae; approach the sacraments as if you had faith, and
faith will come. That is the secret of the Jesuits, contained in the
Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius.

   By similar exercises, a fool, if he will it with perseverance,
would become a wise man.<>

   By changing the habits of the soul one certainly changes those of
the body; we have already said so, and we have explained the method.

   What contributes above all to age us by making us ugly?  Hatred and
bitterness, the unfavourable judgments which {277} we make of others,
our rages of hurt vanity, and our ill-satisfied passions.  A kindly
and gentle philosophy would avoid all these evils.

   If we close our eyes to the defects of our neighbour, and only
consider his good qualities, we shall find good and benevolence
everywhere.  The most perverse man has a good side to him, and softens
when one knows how to take him.  If you had nothing in common with the
vices of men, you would not even perceive them.  Friendship, and the
devotions which it inspires, are found even in prisons and in convict
stations.  The horrible Lacenaire faithfully returned any money which
had been lent to him, and frequently acted with generosity and
kindness.  I have no doubt that in the life of crime which Cartouche
and Mandrin led there were acts of virtue fit to draw tears from the
eyes.  There has never been any one absolutely bad or absolutely good.
 "There is none good but God," said the best of the Masters.

   That quality in ourselves which we call zeal for virtue is often
nothing but a masterful secret self-love, a jealousy in disguise, and
a proud instinct of contradiction.  "When we see manifest disorders
and scandalous sinners," say mystical theologians, "let us believe
that God is submitting them to greater tests than those with which He
tries us, that certainly, or at least very probably, we are not as
good as they are, and should do much worse in their place."

   Peace!  Peace! this is the supreme welfare of the soul, and it is
to give us this that Christ came to the world.

   "Glory to God in the highest, peace upon earth, and good will
toward men!" cried the Angels of Heaven at the birth of the Saviour.

   The ancient fathers of Christianity counted an eighth deadly sin:
it was Sorrow.

   In fact, to the true Christian even repentance is not a sorrow; it
is a consolation, a joy, and a triumph.  "I wished evil, and I wish it
no more; I was dead and I am alive."  The father of the Prodigal son
has killed the fatted calf because his son has returned.  What can he
do?  Tears and embarrassment, no doubt! but above all joy!

   There is only one sad thing in the world, and that is sin and
folly.  Since we are delivered, let us laugh and shout for joy, for we
are saved, and all those who loved us in their lives rejoice in

   We all bear within ourselves a principle of death and a principle
of immortality.  Death is the beast, and the beast produces always
bestial stupidity.  God does not love fools, for his divine spirit is
called the spirit of intelligence.  Stupidity expiates itself by
suffering and slavery. The stick is made for beasts.

   Suffering is always a warning.  So much the worse for him who does
not understand it!  When Nature tightens the rein, it is that we are
swerving; when she plies the whip, it is that danger is imminent. 
Woe, then, to him who does not reflect!

   When we are ripe for death, we leave life without regret, and
nothing would make us take it back; but when death is premature, the
soul regrets life, and a clever thaumaturgist would be able to recall
it to the body.  The sacred books indicate to us the proceeding which
must be employed in such a case. The Prophet Elisha and the Apostle
St. Paul employed it with success.  The deceased must be magnetized
{279} by placing the feet on his feet, the hands on his hands, the
mouth on his mouth.  Then concentrate the whole will for a long time,
call to itself the escaped soul, using all the loving thoughts and
mental caresses of which one is capable.  If the operator inspires in
that soul much affection or great respect, if in the thought which he
communicates magnetically to it the thaumaturgist can persuade it that
life is still necessary to it, and that happy days are still in store
for it below, it will certainly return, and for the man of everyday
science the apparent death will have been only a lethargy.

   It was after a lethargy of this kind that William Postel, recalled
to life by Mother Jeanne, reappeared with a new youth, and called
himself no longer anything but Postel the Resurrected, "Postellus

   In the year 1799, there was in the Faubourg St. Antoine, at Paris,
a blacksmith who gave himself out to be an adept of hermetic science. 
His name was Leriche, and he passed for having performed miraculous
cures and even resurrections by the use of the universal medicine.  A
ballet girl of the Opera, who believed in him, came one day to see
him, and said to him, weeping, that her lover had just died.  M.
Leriche went out with her to the house of death.  As he entered, a
person who was going out, said to him: "It is useless for you to go
upstairs, he died six hours ago."  "Never mind," said the blacksmith,
"since I am here I will see him."  He went upstairs, and found a
corpse frozen in every part except in the hollow of the stomach, where
he thought that he still felt a little heat.  He had a big fire made,
massaged his whole body with hot napkins, rubbed him with the
universal medicine dissolved in spirit of wine.  [His pretended
universal medicine {280} must have been a powder containing mercury
analogous to the kermes<> of the
druggist.]  Meanwhile the mistress of the dead man wept and called him
back to life with the most tender words.  After an hour and a half of
these attentions, Leriche held a mirror before the patient's face, and
found the glass slightly clouded.  They redoubled their efforts, and
soon obtained a still better marked sign of life.  They then put him
in a well warmed bed, and a few hours afterwards he was entirely
restored to life.  The name of this person was Candy.  He lived from
that time without ever being ill.  In 1845 he was still alive, and was
living at Place du Chevalier du Guet, 6.  He would tell the story of
his resurrection to any one who would listen to him, and gave much
occasion for laughter to the doctors and wiseacres of his quarter. 
The good man consoled himself in the vein of Galileo, and answered
them: "You may laugh as much as you like.  All I know is, that the
death certificate was signed and the burial licence made out; eighteen
hours later they were going to bury me, and here I am."

                                 CHAPTER III

                          THE GRAND ARCANUM OF DEATH

   WE often become sad in thinking that the most beautiful life must
finish, and the approach of the terrible unknown that one calls death
disgusts us with all the joys of existence.

   Why be born, if one must live so little?  Why bring up {281} with
so much care children who must die?  Such is the question of human
ignorance in its most frequent and its saddest doubts.

   This, too, is what the human embryo may vaguely ask itself at the
approach of that birth which is about to throw it into an unknown
world by stripping it of its protective envelope.  Let us study the
mystery of birth, and we shall have the key of the great arcanum of

   Thrown by the laws of Nature into the womb of a woman, the
incarnated spirit very slowly wakes, and creates for itself with
effort organs which will later be indispensable, but which as they
grow increase its discomfort in its present situation.  The happiest
period of the life of the embryo is that when, like a chrysalis, it
spreads around it the membrane which serves it for refuge, and which
swims with it in a nourishing and preserving fluid.  At that time it
is free, and does not suffer.  It partakes of the universal life, and
receives the imprint of the memories of Nature which will later
determine the configuration of its body and the form of its features. 
That happy age may be called the childhood of the embryo.

   Adolescence follows; the human form becomes distinct, and its sex
is determined; a movement takes place in the maternal egg which
resembles the vague reveries of that age which follows upon childhood.
 The placenta, which is the exterior and the real body of the foetus,
feels germinating in itself something unknown, which already tends to

break it and escape.  The child then enters more distinctly into the
life of dreams.  Its brain, acting as a mirror of that of its mother,
reproduces with so much force her imaginations, that it communicates
their form to its own limbs.  Its mother is for it at {282} that time
what God is for us, a Providence unknown and invisible, to which it
aspires to the point of identifying itself with everything that she
admires. It holds to her, it lives by her, although it does not see
her, and would not even know how to understand her.  If it was able to
philosophize, it would perhaps deny the personal existence and
intelligence of that mother which is for it as yet only a fatal prison
and an apparatus of preservation.  Little by little, however, this
servitude annoys it; it twists itself, it suffers, it feels that its
life is about to end.  Then comes an hour of anguish and convulsion;
its bonds break; it feels that it is about to fall into the gulf of
the unknown.  It is accomplished; it falls, it is crushed with pain, a
strange cold seizes it, it breathes a last sigh which turns into a
first cry; it is dead to embryonic life, it is born to human life!

   During embryonic life it seemed to it that the placenta was its
body, and it was in fact its special embryonic body, a body useless
for another life, a body which had to be thrown off as an unclean
thing at the moment of birth.

   The body of our human life is like a second envelope, useless for
the third life, and for that reason we throw it aside at the moment of
our second birth.

   Human life compared to heavenly life is veritably an embryo.  When
our evil passions kill us, Nature miscarries, and we are born before
our time for eternity, which exposes us to that terrible dissolution
which St. John calls the second death.

   According to the constant tradition of ecstatics, the abortions of
human life remain swimming in the terrestrial atmosphere which they
are unable to surmount, and which {283} little by little absorbs them
and drowns them.  They have human form, but always lopped and
imperfect; one lacks a hand, another an arm, this one is nothing but a
torso, and that is a pale rolling head.  They have been prevented from
rising to heaven by a wound received during human life, a moral wound
which has caused a physical deformity, and through this wound, little
by little, all of their existence leaks away.

   Soon their moral soul will be naked, and in order to hide its shame
by making itself at all costs a new veil, it will be obliged to drag
itself into the outer darkness, and pass slowly through the dead sea,
the slumbering waters of ancient chaos.  These wounded souls are the
larvae of the second formation of the embryo; they nourish their airy
bodies with a vapour of shed blood, and they fear the point of the
sword.  Frequently they attach themselves to vicious men and live upon
their lives, as the embryo lives in its mother's womb.  In these
circumstances, they are able to take the most horrible forms to
represent the frenzied desires of those who nourish them, and it is
these which appear under the figures of demons to the wretched
operators of the nameless works of black magic.

   These larvae fear the light, above all the light of the mind.  A
flash of intelligence is sufficient to destroy them as by a
thunderbolt, and hurl them into that Dead Sea which one must not
confuse with the sea in Palestine so-called.  All that we reveal in
this place belongs to the tradition of seers,  and can only stand
before science in the name of that exceptional philosophy, which
Paracelsus called the philosophy of sagacity, "philosophia sagax."

                                  CHAPTER IV

                              ARCANUM ARCANORUM

   THE great arcanum --- that is to say, the unutterable and
inexplicable secret --- is the absolute knowledge of good and of evil.

   "When you have eaten the fruit of this tree, you will be as the
gods," said the Serpent.

{Illustration on page 285 described:

  This is a pentagram with point down and a white ring in the center. 
At the ends of the points are black disks.  The pentagram itself is
black.  There are words in white on the Disks, from the upper right,
 There are words in white in the points, same order: "Contre toute
Justice", "Contre toute verite", "Contre toute etre", "Contre toute
science", "Contre toute raison".  In the central ring in three lines:

   "If you eat of it, you will die," replied Divine Wisdom.

   Thus good and evil bear fruit on one same tree, and from one same

   Good personified is God.

   Evil personified is the Devil.

   To know the secret or the formula of God is to be God.

   To know the secret or the formula of the Devil is to be the Devil.

   To wish to be at the same time God and Devil is to absorb in one's
self the most absolute antinomy, the two most strained contrary
forces; it is the wish to shut up in one's self an infinite

   It is to drink a poison which would extinguish the suns and consume
the worlds.<>

{Illustration on page 286 described:

This is a pentagram with an upright isosceles triangle in the midst,
lower angles touching the two lower inner angles of the pentagram. 
There are white disks touching the points from the outside.  The
pentagram is white and circumscribed by a nimbus having five white
wedge-rays coming from the inner angles and opening at the outer edge
of the nimbus.  The white disks have each a thin nimbus without rays
and the following words, clockwise from top: "CHARITE", "MYSTERE",
"SACRIFICE", "PROVIDENCE", "PERFECTION".  The points have the
following text inside, set in script type, same order: "au dessus de
tout etre", "au dessus de toute science", "au dessus de toute
justice", "au dessus de toute raison", "au dessus de toute idee".  In
the central triangle are three lines with the words: "DIEU EST

   It is to put on the consuming robe of Deianira.

   It is to devote one's self to the promptest and most terrible of
all deaths.

   Woe to him who wishes to know too much!  For if excessive and rash
knowledge does not kill him it will make him mad. {286}

   To eat the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, is to
associate evil with good, and assimilate the one to the other.

   It is to cover the radiant countenance of Osiris with the mask of

   It is to raise the sacred veil of Isis; it is to profane the

{Illustration on page 287 described:

This is in shape exactly the same as the illustration on page 282,
save that there are words in the five wedge rays and there is no
triangle in the center. Instead, the sides of the pentagram are
extended as dotted lines to form an inverse pentagon.  The white disks
have the following text, clockwise from top: "INTELLIGENCE",
"PROGRES", "AMOUR", "SAGESSE", "LUMIERE".  The points have the
following text, same order: "dans ses rapports avec l' etre", "dans
ses rapports avec la science", "dans ses rapports avec la justice",
"dans ses rapports avec la raison", "dans ses rapports avec la
verite".  The rays have the following text, clockwise from upper
right: "Genie", "Enthousiasme", "Harmonie", "Beaute", "Rectitude". 
The following words are in the center, in three rows: "L'ESPRIT SAINT

   The rash man who dares to look at the sun without protection
becomes blind, and from that moment for him the sun is black.

   We are forbidden to say more on this subject; we shall conclude our
revelation by the figure of three pentacles.

   These three stars will explain it sufficiently.  They may be
compared with that which we have caused to be drawn at the head of our
"History of magic." By reuniting the four, one may arrive at the
understanding of the Great Arcanum of Arcana.  {287}

   It now remains for us to complete our work by giving the great key
of William Postel.

{Illustration on page 288 described:

This is bounded by a rectangle with height about twice width.  The
center of the illustration is composed of a hexagram of two triangles,
points to top and bottom.  This is circumscribed by a dark ring and
surmounts concentric rings inward from the outer one as white, dark,
white, dark --- at which point the inner angles of the hexagram begin.
 The upper triangle of the hexagram is light and contains a bearded
human head and shoulders at top, feet with draped legs to the lower
points.  The down-ward pointing triangle has the same in dark with a
matching dark figure.  Surmounting the center of the hexagram and
completely obscuring bodies and arms is the classic Roman Agricultural
magical square of five lines: SATOR, AREPO, TENET, OPERA, ROTAS.  The
outer points of the hexagram extend lines radially to irregularly
divide the space to the rectangular border, upper and lower points
excepted.  Above the upper point are the words "Keter  Pole arctique"
and there is a nob at that spot with a line pulled diagonally upward
to the left by an eagle, facing counter clockwise.  Above the eagle is
the word "NETSAH", to the right "L Air".  The line from the upper
right point has "l' Ete" above it and the figure of a winged lion
below, facing outward and progressing upward.  The lion has "HOD"
written to the right of its head and vertically extended left foreleg,
"Le Feu" below its tail and downwardly extended right hind leg.  The
line from the lower right point is below this figure, and "l' Automne"
is below this line. The line from the upper left point has "les
Printemps" written above it. Below this is a bull, no wings and facing
downward.  "JESOD" is above the bull's tail, and "La Terre" is below
the head.  Next below is the line from the lower left point, with "l'
hiver" below that.  Below the lower point are the words "Pole
antartique" and "L' eau".  There is a nob at that spot, with a winged
angel facing right and pulling the nob with a diagonally downward line
to the right.  "MALCHVT" is written below the Angel.  The letters
"HB:Yod" "HB:Heh " "HB:Vau " "HB:Heh " are picked out by dots with
three clustered radial dashes in or near the four corners, starting
with the upper right (clockwise or counter-clockwise makes no
difference).  These dot-letters are the late Medieval style, and
either represent stars or fires.  The Hebrew letters are formed by
straight line segments connecting the dots.  The Hay's have three dots
to the upper bar: ends and center with the dashes to the top.  The
verticals on the Hays have three dots and join the upper bar to add a
fourth, with the three having their dashes facing outward.  The Yod is
composed of two lines, dots at ends and intersection.  Dashes at top
vertical, center dot dashes to the right and lower dot dashes to left.
 The Vau has three dots, ends and center with dashes in same
directions as the Vau.  The figure is completed by two lines of
flourished symbols at the bottom: Larger upper line looks like: 3 or h
(bottom end of corner Vau) Z P 7 R 3(or h) 4 (reversed), but is
intended to represent the seven planets starting with Saturn and
ending with Jupiter..  The smaller lower line looks like: M Z P Z 3(or
h) N 7 M N 3(or h) F (reversed) N, but is intended to represent the
twelve signs of the Zodiac.  These symbols are somewhat doubtful in
identity, owing to the obscuration of using letter and number shapes
to conceal the standard Astrological symbols and to the jumbled

   This key is that of the Tarot.  There are four suits, wands,
caps,{sic} swords, coins or pentacles, corresponding to the four
cardinal points of Heaven, and the four living creatures or symbolic
signs and numbers and letters formed in a circle; then the seven
planetary signs, with the indication of their repetition signified by
the three colours, to symbolize the natural world, the human world and
the divine world, whose {288} hieroglyphic emblems compose the
twenty-one trumps of our Tarot.

   In the centre of the ring may be perceived the double triangle
forming the Star or Seal of Solomon.<>  It is the religious and metaphysical
triad analogous to the natural triad of universal generation in the
equilibrated substance.

   Around the triangle is the cross which divides the circle into four
equal<> parts, and thus the symbols of religion
are united to the signs of geometry; faith completes science, and
science acknowledge faith.

   By the aid of this key one can understand the universal symbolism
of the ancient world, and note its striking analogies with our dogmas.
 One will thus recognize that the divine revelation is permanent in
nature and humanity.  One will feel that Christianity only brought
light and heat into the universal temple by causing to descend therein
the spirit of charity, which is the Very Life of God Himself.


   Thanks be unto thee, O my God, that thou hast called me to this
admirable light!  Thou, the Supreme Intelligence and the Absolute Life
of those numbers and those forces which obey thee in order to people
the infinite with inexhaustible creation!  Mathematics proves thee,
the harmonies of Nature proclaim thee, all forms as they pass by
salute thee and adore thee!

   Abraham knew thee, Hermes divined thee, Pythagoras calculated thee,
Plato, in every dream of his genius, aspired to {289} thee; but only
one initiate, only one sage has revealed thee to the children of
earth, one alone could say of thee: "I and my Father are one."  Glory
then be his, since all his glory is thine!

   Thou knowest, O my Father, that he who writes these lines has
struggled much and suffered much; he has endured poverty, calumny,
proscription, prison, the forsaking of those whom he loved: --- and
yet never did he find himself unhappy, since truth and justice
remained to him for consolation!

   Thou alone art holy, O God of true hearts and upright souls, and
thou knowest if ever I thought myself pure in thy sight!  Like all men
I have been the plaything of human passions.  At last I conquered
them, or rather thou has conquered them in me; and thou hast given me
for a rest the deep peace of those who have no goal and no ambition
but Thyself.

   I love humanity, because men, as far as they are not insensate, are
never wicked but through error or through weakness.  Their natural
disposition is to love good, and it is through that love that thou
hast given them as a support in all their trials that they must sooner
or later be led back to the worship of justice by the love of truth.

   Now let my books go where thy Providence shall send them!  If they
contain the words of thy wisdom they will be stronger than oblivion. 
If, on the contrary, they contain only errors, I know at least that my
love of justice and of truth will survive them, and that thus
immortality cannot fail to treasure the aspirations and wishes of my
soul hat thou didst create immortal! {290}

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Southern Spirits: 19th and 20th century accounts of hoodoo, including slave narratives & interviews
Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by cat yronwode: an introduction to African-American rootwork
Lucky W Amulet Archive by cat yronwode: an online museum of worldwide talismans and charms
Sacred Sex: essays and articles on tantra yoga, neo-tantra, karezza, sex magic, and sex worship
Sacred Landscape: essays and articles on archaeoastronomy, sacred architecture, and sacred geometry
Lucky Mojo Forum: practitioners answer queries on conjure; sponsored by the Lucky Mojo Curio Co.
Herb Magic: illustrated descriptions of magic herbs with free spells, recipes, and an ordering option
Association of Independent Readers and Rootworkers: ethical diviners and hoodoo spell-casters
Freemasonry for Women by cat yronwode: a history of mixed-gender Freemasonic lodges
Missionary Independent Spiritual Church: spirit-led, inter-faith, the Smallest Church in the World
Satan Service Org: an archive presenting the theory, practice, and history of Satanism and Satanists
Gospel of Satan: the story of Jesus and the angels, from the perspective of the God of this World
Lucky Mojo Usenet FAQ Archive: FAQs and REFs for occult and magical usenet newsgroups
Candles and Curios: essays and articles on traditional African American conjure and folk magic
Aleister Crowley Text Archive: a multitude of texts by an early 20th century ceremonial occultist
Spiritual Spells: lessons in folk magic and spell casting from an eclectic Wiccan perspective
The Mystic Tea Room: divination by reading tea-leaves, with a museum of antique fortune telling cups
Yronwode Institution for the Preservation and Popularization of Indigenous Ethnomagicology
Yronwode Home: personal pages of catherine yronwode and nagasiva yronwode, magical archivists
Lucky Mojo Magic Spells Archives: love spells, money spells, luck spells, protection spells, etc.
      Free Love Spell Archive: love spells, attraction spells, sex magick, romance spells, and lust spells
      Free Money Spell Archive: money spells, prosperity spells, and wealth spells for job and business
      Free Protection Spell Archive: protection spells against witchcraft, jinxes, hexes, and the evil eye
      Free Gambling Luck Spell Archive: lucky gambling spells for the lottery, casinos, and races