Blessed are the pure in heart – The mystery of the Beatitudes, J. van Rijckenborgh

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‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God’.

When the pupil on the path of the christian mysteries has attained the quality of mercy outlined in our last chapter, he rises to still higher attainment. The next step on the path of attainment is unveiled to his consciousness. In order for you to realize the value of this new step, which is referred to in Christ’s words, ‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God’, we will briefly recall to your consciousness the Beatitude, ‘Blessed are the merciful’.

As we have seen, mercy does not apply to some degree of human goodness but to a certain development of the heart sanctuary, by which the soul magic of the reborn human being can manifest itself. This magic of the soul relates to a Love-stream transcending the earth, by means of which the pupil knows himself to be imperson- ally linked to the whole of mankind. This bond is both positive and negative.

Through the negative binding the pupil is able to detect the state of being of his fellow-man, as regards the latter’s consciousness, his soul and his body; to realize fully his qualities, his needs, his desires and also his shortcomings, both in a general and in a very personal sense. Thus, through this negative soul-contact, the pupil undergoes all the sorrows and sins, all the appalling and primitive bestiality of his fellow-man, both as to their consequences and to their vibrations. By virtue of his state of being he is the one who takes upon himself all the sufferings of this world.

This negative soul relationship can be so intense, that when the pupil sees two people insulting each other he blushes with the shame that the aggressor should feel but does not, and he also feels the pain of the victim, without this one being even conscious of this pain. Due to this association the pupil’s life becomes so difficult in the sea of confusion and evil immersing mankind, that there are times in the service of his Lord when he can hardly bear this vicarious suffering. However, in his moments of utmost distress he continually experiences the glorious truth of his Saviour’s words, ‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy’. The cross of nature will never become too heavy to bear. A great joy which is not of this world sustains him and makes him stronger than ever before.

The positive binding is not one of assimilation but of radiation. When the pupil experiences the sorrow, the pain, the sin and the effects of the primitivity of his fellow-man and suffers with him or for him, then he will by means of his positive binding give his fellow-man something quite different in return to what he receives from him or suffers because of him. The radiant force of this positive bond of union, which in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred is transmitted in an absolutely impersonal way, can be a very great comfort and work as an ineffable grace to the recipient; but in by far the greatest majority of cases this force works as an intense conflagration. The lower man cannot bear the heavenly Light of Love. He experiences it as a consuming fire. It is actually like the heat of a fever which is cleansing, purifying and disease-expelling but, because of the negativity of the recipient, it seems to be disease-producing and the perpetrator of all sorts of complications.

Realize this well, in thinking or speaking of the vicarious suffering of our Lord; when the congregation of the faithful sings, ‘What a friend we have in Jesus, who wants to stand in our place’, who experiences our suffering, who suffers in our stead without our knowing it, because we are so frightfully stupid and narrow-minded that we are hardly able to cast a glance at the range of our shortcomings.

Take note that the same congregation that experiences the benefit of Christ’s negative soul relationship, is at the same time touched by the positive soul-bond with our Lord. In other words, not only are our lower dialectical problems left unsolved, but they become more acute! When one consciously and in dependence on it opens oneself to the negative soul- binding one will also experience to the fullest measure the fire of the positive soul-binding. This fire becomes a fever, a scorching disharmony, a divine wrath of God if a man does not fundamentally change himself and his way of life. The realization of these things could benefit mankind more than athousand sermons.

When the pupil on the path of the christian mysteries discovers that the magic of the soul begins to claim its own and to prove its power in his life; when he begins to experience that by becoming a member of Christ he also undergoes the vicarious suffering on account of the negative soul contacts made; that through the positive soul contacts he is able to help his fellow-man in an un-earthly way; when the pupil is able in this way to extend mercy and receives mercy in return, a new warning is addressed to him; a new counsel is given to him and a new vista is opened to him. This warning, this counsel, this new vista is conveyed in the Beatitude, ‘Blessed are the pure in heart’.

The pupil must come to the recognition that his new soul faculty must become an absolute faculty. Before the pupil may use his soul faculty in a personally directed way, his heart must be purified, i.e. his heart sanctuary and his entire soul state must be brought to a level that meets the minimum requirement. This cleansing of the heart can never be the result of a resolution. No one can proceed to the purification of his heart on the basis of a decision. Purification of the heart is always the result of a process.

We have already discussed many times the relation of man’s soul to his blood; that the blood is an aspect of the soul. Even in the past the ancients testified, “The soul of man, it is his blood’. Because the heart is the motor of the blood, of the body, because it is in the heart that the blood is renewed and provided with new atmospheric forces, it is understandable that the purity of the heart relates primarily to the purity of the blood and to the potentialities in the blood.

Some have thought that purity is simply a condition of the body; others, that purity is a matter of the state of the soul; some have said that purity is a state of consciousness in a mystic-abstract sense, but we say that purity is the result of the quality of the blood. This includes everything as to consciousness, soul and body. The assimilative faculty of your consciousness, your mental comprehension, your ability to judge and to condemn, the perspicacity to see through diverse situations in all their ramifications and inter-relationships; the proper kind of help to give people in difficult situations; the discrimination as to when to speak and when to be silent; all this depends upon your blood capacities.

The impressions you may receive as a pupil on the path, by means of the negative soul contacts, are being sifted and mirrored by your blood faculty, while the positive soul-binding depends entirely upon the image reflected by the blood upon your consciousness. A blurred lens cannot give a true image, and a steamy mirror clouds the picture.

This is the reason why pupils on the path and in general all intuitive people, must always learn by bitter experience that if they try to steer their ships by the compass of their intuitions, the ship will again and again strike a reef. Therefore, purity of heart, purity and enhancement of the blood faculty is the primary requirement. Only by that compass will you be able to navigate safely, for purity of the heart means: seeing God. ‘Seeing God’ means having such a consciously firsthand binding with the Godhead, with the entire divine pur- pose of the All, that an impression or an intuition re- ceived via this state of being affords full comprehension and guarantees a correct reaction.

‘Seeing God’ signifies that no barrier remains between the world of God and the pupil and this state is attained through purity of the heart, ie. purification and development of the blood faculty which has its focus in the heart sanctuary.

Therefore, it is well to reflect consciously upon how the pupil can obtain this purity of heart, because there is little sense in meditating in mystical exaltation upon a divine value which must be incorporated into a human life, without taking due pains to master the quality. Hence, we must first of all understand what is required of us in this matter. Our blood pervades our entire organic structure, every fibre, all the cells of our body; by the agency of the blood in all its aspects and vibrations, which we cannot go further into just now, our human Temple functions.

We received our blood from our parents at birth and on the basis of that we proceeded to produce our own blood at the age of approximately seven. Also, the results of the lives of the predecessors in our microcosm are etched into the blood-being. That which we have received from our parents and ancestors and all that.we have brought with us from our unknown microcosmic past, imparts to our blood its own magnetic faculty according to the principle of ‘like attracts like’.

From all this a certain cycle of nature appears imparting certain specific characteristics to particular families, peoples and races to which the species and sub-species will continually correspond. By nature we are all tied to the blood and because nature is fallen and the quality of the blood is inferior, the great human tragedy has appeared on the scene which has been holding man captive for endless eons.

An intelligent God-seeking person, searching for liberation, who arrives at insight regarding this blood bond- age, realizes that a self-activity must be developed by which he is going to respond to and cooperate with the Christ intervention in this world. In this way the pupil begins the process which must lead to the purity of the heart. This process is not mystical intoxication but a purely scientific procedure. A regeneration of the consciousness, the soul and the body must be brought about and the pupil must clearly visualize how this regeneration must begin and be pursued in all its aspects. Even from the start the pupil should fully realize that it is not a matter of shadow, but of substance; not of words, but of deeds and that any outward action must always find its base in inward action.

From the exhortation in the Sermon on the Mount, ‘If your right eye offends you, pluck it out and cast it from you’, ‘If your right hand offends you, cut it off and cast it from you’, the pupil will understand that what he has to bring about is a scientific, structural renewal. The hand that allays a situation and practices a certain magic and the eye causing man to concentrate on certain values must be changed in regard to their activities. That being the case the pupil places himself ‘under the Law’. Voluntarily, out of his deepest need and most earnest desire he places himself ‘under the Law’.

What is the Law? The Law, interpreting the divine plan for world and mankind, states how man has to act, what requirements he must satisfy and what ways he has to walk, so that he can break the fetters of his bondage to the blood and acquire purity of heart by way of the process. Is that Law supreme? Is living under the Law paramount? Of course not. The Law is a programme of action, an animated spiritual vibration-field in which and through which the meaning of life unfolds itself intelligently to us. The purpose of living under the Law is to condition man to become a Law unto himself, to rise above it and in this way to strengthen the benefits of the Law for the benefit of others.

We must learn to visualize the Law in the Gnostic sense as a Jacob’s ladder extending into heaven, upon which God’s angels ascend and descend freely. You may visualize the ladder as two poles with cross bars; you may think of it as words and formulae; you can prostitute the Law by simulating it; you may even fear it, for as it says in the Epistle to the Romans, ‘Under the Law we all sin, there is none righteous, no, not one’.

However, you may also come to see the Law as the universal doctrine exemplified by Christ, as a hand extended down from God, as a cross which man must learn to bear and realize, as a cross linking eternity with time. To the true pupil the Law is a shaft of light-rays of the universal truth to which he must learn to respond, ray by ray. Each ray can be designated by means of a simple formula placing itself lovingly beside the primitive faculty of comprehension of the fallen one who desires to climb the ladder, thus opening the path to him by means of a clear but serious requirement.

The blood force becomes purified and developed, struggling out of its bondage to nature by way of: ideality, morality and reality. Ideality poses the why, morality poses the wherefore and reality poses the how.

‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God’.

We now grasp these words as to the idea. Through a certain condition of the blood-potential we obtain a binding with the Godhead. Likewise, we realize what morality is. After the why we see the wherefore. Purity of heart enables us to practice the correct mercy, to appreciate the negative soul-binding in the correct manner and to help in the correct way by means of the positive soul-binding. But now the reality must come about. Seeing and comprehending must be followed by realization and dynamism. We cannot stop at contempla- tion because we would then be sunning ourselves in the negative fashion of Abel. No, we must seize the reality and we can do this, thanks to the Law which renews us and approaches us in Christ. In a way, the working of the Law is plainly scientific.

If we know that our soul-potential is captive, bound to the wheel through our blood, it is only very logical that we begin to attack this circular course of nature through systematically revers- ing our way of living, from below upwards! However, let the pupil keep in mind that the way of living is not an end in itself but only a means to an end.

Thus, commencing from the bitter reality the pupil will pull down one barrier after another and passing through the reality, he will come closer to morality, until finally he realizes the idea itself: ‘Purity of heart and seeing God’. The bliss of this cannot be expressed in words. It can only be confirmed in time in goodness, truth and justice, offered as a comfort and a blessing for mankind. Do realize that purity of heart designates the highest soul development, the absolute soul-power and complete blood purification.

‘Lord, who shall dwell in your tent? Who shall dwell on your holy Mountain?’ He who walks uprightly, and works righteousness and speaks the truth with his heart. He who does these things shall never be moved.

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