What esoteric or exoteric light can you shine on the Adam/Eve story of Genesis regarding the Snake who could speak and walk upright?
The story of Adam and Eve is, of course, purely symbolic and allegorical. It refers to the coming into incarnation of the human egos some 18 1/2 million years ago. The undifferentiated souls took separate sexes on the physical plane and 'ate of the tree of knowledge of Good and Evil', that is, experienced physical-plane life for the first time. This was ó for the soul ó a ëfallí from paradise (the soul state) into carnal life, and therefore limitation for the soul. The descent of the soul, of course, was intentional and according to divine plan. The snake is a symbol for sex.
Do you accept the interpretation of Lucifer as the Fallen Angel of evil?
No, I do not. I think this is a complete misunderstanding of Lucifer by Christian teaching. The name ëLuciferí means, literally, ëlightí. The word comes from the Latin root: lux, lucis ó light; and fer, ferre ó to bring. It means, therefore, light-bringing and is the name of the planet Venus as the morning star.
Far from being evil, it is pure light. In the esoteric teaching, Lucifer is the name for the great angelic Entity who embodies the human kingdom on the soul plane. As souls, we are each an individualized part of this great Oversoul. Difficult as it is for us to grasp, there is really no such thing as a separate soul. It does not exist.
The Christian teaching holds that Lucifer ó the chief rebel angel, Satan ó was thrown out of heaven for getting too big-headed and arguing with God. This is simplistic and shows a complete misunderstanding of the reality. It is also, of course, symbolic. It is symbolic of a very significant point in our human evolution which took place 18 1/2 million years ago.
At that time, early animal-man had reached a point when the energy of Mind could be brought to bear on his incipient mind. He had not yet a mental body. The energy of Mind, brought from the planet Venus, was radiated to animal-man. This process stimulated the mind of these near-men to a point where it was possible for the human souls, waiting on the soul plane, to come into incarnation for the first time. Early animal-man was so undeveloped that the energy of mind, and at least the nucleus of a mental body, had to be present before this could take place.
For the first time, the human souls were individualized. As the soul is perfect, the soul plane is a kind of paradise.
The myth of Adam and Eve symbolizes this descent from paradise into incarnation. Because the soul can manifest only imperfectly through the lower vehicles ó mental, astral and physical ó it is, in a sense, descending into imperfection or 'evil' as it is called in the Bible. It is not evil in any good/bad sense but is imperfect relative to the soul level. For the Masters there is only imperfection and perfection. There is no such thing as 'sin.' Sin is a relative imperfection. But the Christian groups have focused everything on sin, good and bad.
The descent by the soul into physical matter led to an imperfect expression of that soul. The journey of evolution, of course, proceeds until the physical vehicles are sufficiently refined to allow the perfect manifestation of the soul in incarnation. That is the return process. The descent of the soul into matter (the rebellion in heaven) is involution, the return trip is evolution.
Q. Why do some writers say that we are fallen angels? What happened?
A. This relates to the biblical 'fall' of man from 'paradise'. Essentially, each of us is a soul in incarnation, a solar angel. On the soul plane, each soul is an individualized part of one Oversoul; the separation we experience on the personality level is an illusion - the great heresy. The 'fall' refers to the decision - taken 18.5 million years ago - of the human souls to come into incarnation for the first time; to leave 'paradise' - the soul's natural state of perfection - for the experience of 'the fruit of the tree of knowledge'. This is a great sacrifice for the human soul for it involves severe limitation of its sphere of expression. The sacrifice is willingly undertaken, however, to carry further the Plan of Evolution of the Logos of the planet. Thus the 'fall' is really symbolic.
Q. Does heaven exist?
A. "Heaven" is an inner state of Being or consciousness. "The Kingdom of Heaven is within," as Jesus Himself said. The Kingdom of Heaven is the Spiritual Kingdom, the Kingdom of Souls, the Spiritual Hierarchy of Masters and Initiates, the kingdom immediately above the human. It is entered into through the door of Initiation. It is the consciousness which results from the union of soul and human personality. The mode of achieving that union is meditation which is the means by which the true Being, the Higher self or soul and its reflection - the man or woman in incarnation - are fused together in the soul-infused personality.
There is also another meaning of "heaven". Souls not in incarnation spend a greater or lesser length of 'time' (time is a physical-plane concept of the human brain) in Devachan, a state of unending bliss, while awaiting the call to reincarnate. The Christian concept of heaven, while somewhat distorted, relates to this experience.
Q. If God were omnipresent, this would be Heaven. Why is there suffering?
A. You are a soul incarnating on the physical plane, through a personality, with a physical, an emotional, and a mental vehicle. All of these make up your personality, the reflection on this plane of a great god, your own soul - which is identical with the Logos of this planet of which we are all part. The reason we suffer, fundamentally, is because we think we are separate. Because we believe and experience ourselves as separate from God. If we could, from moment to moment, as the Masters of the Wisdom do, as the highest Initiates do, experience our selves as one with all that exists, One, and identical, we would realise that we and God are One. We would no longer suffer.