March 2, 1917
Received by James Padgett
I am here, Jesus.
I come tonight to write my message on the soul, and will do so, if we can establish the necessary rapport.
Well, the subject is of vast importance and difficult of explanation, for there is nothing on earth known to man with which a comparison may be made, and, generally men cannot understand truth, or the nature of things, except by comparison with what they already know to exist and with whose qualities and characteristics they are acquainted.
There is nothing in the material world that will afford a basis of comparison with the soul and, hence, it is difficult for men to comprehend the nature and qualities of the soul by the mere intellectual perceptions and reason, and in order to understand the nature of this great creation - the soul - men must have something of a spiritual development and the possession of what may be known as the soul perceptions. Only soul can understand soul, and the soul that seeks to comprehend the nature of itself must be a "live soul" with its faculties developed to a small degree, at least.
First, I will say, that the human soul must be a creature of God and not emanation from Him, as a part of His soul, and when men speak and teach that the human soul is a part of the Over-Soul, they teach what is not true.
This soul is merely a creature of the Father, just as are the other parts of man, such as the intellect and the spirit body and the material body and, which before its creation had no existence. It has not existed from the beginning of eternity, if you can imagine that eternity ever had a beginning. I mean that there was a time when the human soul had no existence; and whether there will ever come a time when any human soul will cease to have an existence, I do not know, nor does any spirit, only God knows that fact. But this I do know, that whenever the human soul partakes of the Essence of the Father, and thereby becomes Divine itself, and the possessor of His Substance of Love, that soul realizes to a certainty that it is Immortal and can never again become less than Immortal. As God is Immortal, the soul that has been transformed into the Substance of the Father becomes Immortal, and never again can the decree, "Dying thou shalt die," be pronounced upon it.
As I said, there was a period in eternity when the human soul did not exist and was created by the Father, and when it was made the highest and most perfect of all God's creation, to such an extent that it was made in His image - the only one or thing of all His creations that was made in His image, and the only part of man that was made in His image, for the soul is the man and all his attributes and qualities, such as his intellect and spirit body and material body and appetites and passions, are merely appendages or means of manifestation given to that soul to be its companions while passing through its existence on earth and, also, qualifiedly while living in eternity. I mean some of the appendages will accompany the soul in its existence in the spirit world, whether that existence be for all eternity or not.
But this soul, great and wonderful as it is, was created in the mere image and likeness of God, and not in or of His Substance or Essence - the Divine of the universe - and it, the soul, may cease to exist without any part of the Divine Nature or Substance of the Father being lessened or in any way affected; and, hence, when men teach or believe that man, or the soul of man is Divine, or has any of the qualities or Substance of the Divine, such teaching and belief are erroneous, because man is only and merely the created man, the mere likeness but no part of the Father or of His Substance and qualities.
While the soul of man is of the highest order of creation, and his attributes and qualities correspond, yet he is no more divine in essential constituents, than are the lower objects of creation - they each being a creation, and not an emanation, of their Creator.
True it is that the soul of man is of a higher order of creation than any other created things and is the only creature made in the image of God and was made the perfect man, yet man - the soul - can never become anything different or greater than the perfect man, unless he receives and possesses the Divine Essence and qualities of the Father, which he did not possess at his creation, although, most wonderful gift, with his creation, God bestowed upon him the privilege of receiving this Great Substance of the Divine Nature, and thereby become Divine himself. The perfectly created man could become the Divine Angel, if he, the man, so willed it and obeyed the commands of the Father, and pursued the way provided by the Father for obtaining and possessing that Divinity.
As I have said, the souls, the human souls, for the indwelling of which God provided material bodies, that they might live the mortal lives, were created just as, subsequently, these material bodies were created; and this creation of the soul took place long before the appearance of man on earth as a mortal, and the soul prior to such appearance had its existence in the spirit world as a substantial conscious entity, although without visible form and, I may say individuality, but yet, having a distinct personality, so that it was different and distinct from every other soul.
Its existence and presence could be sensed by every other soul that came in contact with it, and yet to the spirit vision of the other soul, it was not visible. And such is the fact now. The spirit world is filled with these un-incarnated souls, awaiting the time of their incarnation, and we spirits know of and sense their presence, and yet with our spirit eyes we cannot see them, and not until they become dwellers in the human form and in the spirit body that inhabits that form can we see the individual soul.
And the fact that I have just stated illustrates - in a way describes - the Being of Him in whose image these souls are created. We know and can sense the existence and presence of the Father, and yet, even with our spiritual eyes we cannot see Him; and only when we have our soul developed by the Divine Essence of His Love can we perceive Him with our soul perception, because you have not words in your language to convey its meaning, and nothing in created nature, of which you have knowledge of in which a comparison can be made. But it is a truth; for the vision of the soul perception to its possessor is just as real, as I may say, objective, as is the vision of the mortal sight to the mortal.
It may be asked in considering this matter of the creation of the soul: "Were all souls that have been incarnated, or that are awaiting incarnation, created at the same time, or is that creation still going on?"
I do know that the spirit world contains many souls, such as I have described awaiting their temporary homes and the assumption of individuality in the human form, but as to whether that creation has ended and at sometime the reproduction of men for the embodying of these souls will cease, I do not know, and the Father has never revealed it to me, or to the others of His angels who are close to Him in His Divinity and Substance.
The Father has not revealed to me all the truths and the workings and objects of His creative laws, and neither has He given to me all power and wisdom and omniscience as some may find justification for believing in certain of the statements of the Bible. I am a progressive spirit, and as I grew in love and knowledge and wisdom when on earth, I am still growing in these qualities, and the love and mercy of the Father come to me with the assurance that never in all eternity will I cease to progress towards the very fountainhead of these attributes of Him, the only God, the All in All.
As I was saying, the soul of man is the man, before, while in the mortal existence and ever after in the spirit world, and all other parts of man, such as the mind and body and spirit are mere attributes, which may be dissevered from him as the soul progresses in its development toward its destiny of either the perfect man or the Divine Angel, and in the latter progression, men may not know it, but it is a truth, that the mind - that is, the mind as known to mankind, becomes, as it were, non-existent; and this mind as some say, the carnal mind becomes displaced and replaced by the mind of the transformed soul, which is in substance and quality, to a degree, the mind of Deity, itself.
Many theologians and philosophers and metaphysicians believe and teach that the soul, spirit and mind are substantially one and the same thing, and that anyone of them may be said to be the man - the ego - and that in the spirit world one or the other of these entities is that which persists and determines in its development or want of development the condition or state of man after death. But this conception of these parts of man are erroneous, for they each have a distinct and separate existence and functioning, whether man be a mortal or spirit. The mind, in its qualities and operations, is very well known to man, because of its varied manifestations and being that part of man which is more of the nature of the material and has been the subject of greater research and study than has been the soul or the spirit.
While men have, during all the centuries, speculated upon and attempted to define the soul and its qualities and attributes, yet to them it has been intransitive and impossible of comprehension by the intellect, which is the only instrumentality that man generally possesses to search for the great truth of the soul and, hence, the question of: "What is the soul?" has never been satisfactorily or authoritatively answered, though to some of these searchers, when inspiration may have shed a faint light upon them, some glimpse of what the soul is, has come to them. Yet to most men who have sought to solve the problem, the soul and spirit and mind are substantially the same thing.
But the soul, as concerning man, is a thing of itself, alone. A substance real, though invisible to mortals. The discerner and portrayer of men's moral and spiritual condition - never dying, so far as known, and the real ego of the man. In it are centered the love principle, the affections, the appetites and the passions, and possibilities of receiving and possessing and assimilating those things that will either elevate man to the state or condition of the Divine Angel or the perfect man, or lower him to the condition that fits him for the Hells of darkness and suffering.
The soul is subject to the will of man, which is the greatest of all endowments that were bestowed upon him by his Maker at his creation, and is the certain index of the workings of that will either in thought or action, and in the soul's qualities of love and affection and appetites and passions are influenced by the power of the will, either for good or evil. It may be dormant and stagnate, or it may be active and progress. And so its energies may be ruled by the will for good or evil, but these energies belong to it and are no part of the will.
The soul's home is in the spirit body, whether that body is encased in the mortal or not, and it is never without such spirit body, which in appearance and composition is determined by the condition and state of the soul. And finally, the soul or its condition decides the destiny of man, as he continues in his existence in the spirit world; not a final destiny, because the condition of the soul is never fixed, and as this condition changes, man's destiny changes, for destiny is the thing of the moment, and finality is not known to the progress of the soul until it becomes the perfect man and is then satisfied and seeks no higher progress.
Now, in your common language and also in your theological and philosophical terms, mortals who have passed to spirit life are said to be spirits, and in a certain sense this is true, but such mortals are not nebulous, unformed and invisible existences, they have a reality of substance, more real and enduring than has man as a mortal, and are in form and features visible and subject to touch and the object of the spiritual senses. So when men speak of soul, spirit and body, if they understood the truth of the terms, they would say: "soul, spirit-body, and material-body."
There is a spirit, but it is altogether distinct and different from the spirit body, and also from the soul. It is not part of the spirit body, but is an attribute of the soul, exclusively and without the soul, it could not exist. It has no substance as has the soul, and it is not visible to even the spirit vision - only the effect of its workings can be seen or understood, - and it is without body, form or substance. And yet it is real and powerful, and when existing never ceasing in its operations - and is an attribute of all souls.
Then what is the spirit? Simply this - the active energy of the soul. As I have said, the soul has its energy, which may be dormant or which may be active. If dormant, the spirit is not in existence; if active the spirit is present and manifests that energy in action. So to confuse the spirit with the soul, as being identical, leads to error and away from the truth.
It is said that God is spirit, which in a sense is true, for spirit is a part of His great soul qualities, and which He uses to manifest His presence in the universe; but to say that spirit is God is not stating the truth, unless you are willing to accept as true the proposition that a part is the whole. In the divine economy, God is all of spirit, but spirit is only the messenger of God, by which He manifests the energies of His Great Soul. And so with man. Spirit is not man-soul, but man-soul is spirit, as it is the instrumentality by which the soul of man makes known its energies and powers and presence.
Well, I have written enough for tonight, but sometime I will come and simplify this subject. But remember this, that Soul is God, soul is man, and all manifestations, such as spirit and spirit body are merely evidences of the existence of the soul - the real man. I have been with you as I promised, and I know that Father will bless you. So with my love and blessing, I will say good night.
Your brother and friend,