Lectionary Readings for Thursday, April 30th, 2020

Lectionary Readings for Thursday, April 30th, 2020

1st Quarter Moon

God’s First Book Chapter 18, Chapter 19

Chapter 18

1. On the next morning, at sunrise, God spake again to Brahma, saying:

2. Consider the fruit of the earth, and the pasturage in the fields. The male and the female
feed on the same grass; the one yieldeth milk, the other is for the yoke; neither can any
man change these creations.

3. What man shall say to another: Feed thou on this; or on that? But they take of them that
are born in darkness, and raise up priests! The food for the flesh, or even fasting, cannot
bring su’is. The air warmeth the earth, and not the earth the air. The spirit enlighteneth the
corporeal part, and not the corporeal part the spirit.

4. Light is the freedom of all; to know this is the beginning of wisdom. Nevertheless,
without suffering, some that are bound would not know they are bound, or, if knowing,
would not desire freedom.

5. At this time, Hog, the youngest born, was greatly moved, whereupon God bade him

6. Hog said: O that I could believe these things! O that I could see! O that I could hear! O
the misery of my darkness! O the horrors of the suspense of not knowing a matter! Bitter
is my soul, and full of anguish! O the madness of this hour upon me!

7. Wherein, O Wisdom, forgottest Thou the time of my begetting, to let me spring up as
an offensive weed in such a garden of paradise!

8. And he bowed his head and wept; and then spake Yu-tiv, his mother, that brought
him forth. She said: I perceive Thy light, O Father, but I cannot bear it. Thou didst
unlock my members to bring forth these seven Gods! Never woman on the whole
earth brought forth so rich a harvest; but yet my soul is tortured to the very center! O
that the light of my soul could be transferred to this God of men! And she also wept.

9. Now spake Sa’it, saying: Next nearest am I to thee, O my sweet brother, Hog. No love
lieth so fondly to thee as mine. And as to thee, Yu-tiv, my Goddess mother, thou hast
most wisely named me A
BUNDANT. For in our love hath Ormazd provided us equal to the
highest of Gods. Because I have witnessed that this purest and best of brothers cannot
see spiritually, my soul is mellowed toward all the world. Yea, my outstretched arms
shall receive the darkest of men, and my soul shall go up in praise of Ormazd forever!

10. Oos spake next; he said: Most wisely am I named SPACE; for it hath pleased Ormazd
to show me the breadth of His Creations. What belief or unbelief is there that He hath
not provided a glory for it! Because my sweet brother, Hog, has been thus blessed
with darkness, he shall be guardian unto me in earthly wisdom all my days. In my
faith I know it is well with him; yet in my love I would that he could see as we all see!

11. Then spake Git-un, whose name signified TIME. He said: Behold, I am the fourth born,
and, as it were, in the middle. Whose love is so delightfully hedged about as mine! Who
so surrounded by the Light of heaven and earth! At one end behold my father, God of
men; the very voice of heaven and earth; interpreter of the Creator’s words! At the other
end, the best, sweetest brother ever created on the earth, with all the wisdom of men and
angels. O the glory of this hour! O the delight to be with these Gods, and with Yu-tiv,
Goddess of women!

12. Then Vus, the second born, spake. He said: Wherein shall I glorify Thee, O Ormazd,
and not glorify myself! I am full to overflowing with delight for the love of these, my
brothers, and father, very Gods! But for Yu-tiv I have more than love. I perceive through
my own sweet mother how the different castes of men are made! O mother, how nearly a
righteous woman dwelleth with the Creator!

13. Whe-ish said: To rank one’s thoughts and desires ever high; would not this deliver the
world? Vede said: To know the truth and ever speak it in love and kindness, would not
this deliver the world and establish Ormazd?

14. Now woke Brahma from his trance, and he spake, saying: To find the Father; to know
Him; to reveal Him; these are all, and for His glory only.

15. Now again spake God, saying: Wiser than all the rest is Brahma. Who of ye all hath
not spoken of himself or herself? Who hath uttered a word of praise or of thanks, and left
out self? Judge ye, then, what is required of men that my spirit may find utterance through
their lips.

16. Then the Voice departed for that day; and the angel of God appeared in the door, so
all save Hog could see him. The angel said: That ye may see the spirits of the
intermediate world, come ye at midnight and sit in the sacred circle in the grove of Ebon.
We will appear in sar’gis.

17. Hog heard not the angel, but the others told him what the angel said. Accordingly, at
midnight they sat in circle in the grove of Ebon.

Chapter 19

1. And the angel of God appeared in the midst of the circle, in sar’gis, and talked with
them face to face. And Hog said unto the angel: Of a truth, I know thou art not mortal,
and yet thou hast the semblance of flesh, and limbs, and arms, and a very body, and art
clothed withal, and thy clothes are like mortal clothes.

2. Now I tell thee face to face, I believe thou art no angel of the dead, but a very reflected
self-substance, produced out of the substance of my father. How sayest thou? The angel
answered, saying:

3. Mortal words cannot convince thee; neither the words of a spirit. Behold, I will
show thee a friend of thine who is dead. With that, the angel showed the spirit of Hog’s
friend who was dead, and the man’s name was Aara-acta; and so Hog said unto him:

4. Thou art a very counterpart of him I knew. What is thy name? The spirit answered:
Aara-acta! I tell thee, O Hog, these things are true. I am the spirit of thy friend; yea, I am
that very friend. Hog said: Where dwellest thou? Where hast thou been? Art thou happy?
Hast thou visited all the heavens?

5. The spirit answered him, saying: I dwell on the earth even as before death; around
about. I am happy; the glory of my present world surpasseth the earth. I have not visited
the highest heavens. I am only as yet in the first resurrection. Up above us there are
heavens where all the people are Gods and Goddesses. I cannot go there; they are too
white. The spirit then disappeared, and Hog said:

6. What I have seen I have seen; what I have heard I have heard. Yet I believe not that I
have seen a spirit nor heard one. A spirit must in reason be thin and subtle and air-like.

7. Then spake the angel of God, saying: How shall I please this man, O Ormazd? This day
I showed myself in the door of the hut, thin and subtle and air-like, and he saw me not,
nor heard me. Who can find a way to open this man’s soul to Thy Wisdom, O Ormazd?

8. Now spake Yu-tiv: Great is the glory of Thy angel, O Ormazd! Heavenly are the spirits
of the dead. Welcome, O ye angels of heaven! Then spake Whe-ish, saying: Even the
lowest of heavens hath great glory! O the delight to dwell in such a paradise! Then Vus
spake, saying: Such wisdom and truth! What are Thy kingdoms, O Father, when even the
first heaven hath such glory. Git-un said: Because I have lived to behold these things, I
will proclaim Thy wonders, O Ormazd, as long as I live! Vede said: Truth is Thy

mightiest work, O Ormazd! Oos said: How wisely hast Thou framed Thy worlds, O
Ormazd! Even Thy lowest of angels are a delight of my soul! Next spake Sa-it; he said:
Give us of Thy abundance, O Ormazd. Open wide the gates of the lower heavens. I will
take Thy angels to my arms and rejoice forever!

9. Brahma then came out of his trance, though he had heard and seen all. He said:
Whoever cometh that can make me better, and show me how most to benefit Thy world,
him, O Ormazd, send Thou unto me. And, lo, first of all, Brahma was answered! A light,
bright as a sun, stood in the midst of the circle, and it was higher than the clouds, and
displayed a staff on which was a banner of gold and silver; and on the banner, stars
clustered to spell the words, Love, Wisdom and Power!

10. Presently the scene changed, and the angel of God said: He that spake last (Brahma)
hath been answered first, because his words reached to the Fountain Head. Wheresoever
ye send your prayers, there are ye answered. To which end I will now open the gates of
the lower heavens, and ye shall witness what ye may.

11. The angel withdrew all the lights around about, so that great darkness might be upon
the circle. Presently, Yu-tiv started as if affrighted somewhat. Then Vus sprang up,
saying: What was that? And then another started, till presently all but Brahma and Hog
were wild and startled, whispering: What do mine eyes behold! O that foul smell! O that
vulgar touch! And then one screamed; and another, and another, until all broke and fled,
screaming and crying out in fear and distress; flying in the darkness of the grove, frantic;
almost dead with fear!

12. Hog ran not; saw nothing to fear; heard nothing to dread; felt nothing to make him

13. And his father, Brahma, ran not, nor was afraid, and the twain called to the rest,
pleaded, coaxed and called in vain; could not stop them; could not find them in the
darkness. They returned to the hut, Brahma and Hog; saw the torches burning brightly,
and came in and found Yu-tiv and her sons huddled together in each other’s arms, white
and pale as death.

14. Hog asked the reason. Yu-tiv said: Sh___, are they gone? Sh___, keep them away!
Then spake Vus, saying: O my brother, ask not what we saw! Ask not what we felt, and
what felt us! These things would not be lawful to mention! Say no more, in heaven’s
name! The air of heaven is full of demons (druj).

15. Now spake Vede, saying: Alas, O my father, I dropped the holy book, the Veda I am
writing. In my fright I let it fall. It is not sized yet, and should it rain ere morning, the holy
words will be lost! And not for a thousand worlds would I go back to the grove this night.
Oos said: Nor I, for a thousand worlds! Whe-ish said: For all the gold and silver in the
world I would not go there this night.

16. So they all spake save Hog, and with all the love they bore for Ormazd’s words,
nothing doubting they were His very words, not one would venture amongst the evil
spirits they had seen, to recover the book.

17. Then spake Brahma, saying: For many generations Ormazd hath labored for this; I
will go myself; I know He will protect me at all times and in all places. And Brahma rose
up to depart; but then spake Hog, saying: Nay, father; thou art old; I am fresh and young,
and withal, know there are no spirits but in the imagination of men. I will go alone!

18. Nor will I bear a lantern nor a torch; nor will I whistle nor sing. I will confront all the
evil spirits of hell and their captains. I will recover that book this night though I
scrape every leaf from Ebon grove! And mark ye, too, I will return unscathed; nor
will I see nor hear a spirit the while I am gone. So, Hog and Brahma only were fearless.

19. With that Hog departed, and after a while he returned, rejoicing, bringing the book;
and he said: I neither saw nor heard a spirit, and I declare unto you, that none of you saw
nor heard them, for there are none. By the extreme bent of your minds, these imaginings
seem real. And as to the great Light, with the words, Love, Wisdom and Power, which
I also saw, I say unto you it is some emanation from this, our holy and most loved
father. How oft have we heard him use those same words! And as to those figures
that talked, and had the semblance of men and women, even to their garments, I say
unto you all, they emanate from the same source, even from our father, even Brahma.

20. Now spake Yu-tiv, saying: O happy unbelief, my son! O that I had been born as thou!
O that I had never seen such sights as I saw this night!

21. Then said Oos: O happy brother, our youngest born! Would that I were like unto thee!
O the vulgarity of those hands that came upon me this night!

22. Vus said: O that I had never known the unseen world! O that I had been born in
darkness like unto thee, our most favored brother!

23. After that manner they all spake deploringly of their gift of su’is; and when they had
thus spoken, the angel of God spake through Brahma, saying: Whilst it is yet night, I
speak. With the dawn, at sunrise, is the Father’s Voice. Hear me, then, briefly, expecting
not much wisdom, for I am not long born in heaven.

24. Two great men created the Creator, the Faithist and the unbeliever; the one who hath
passed through the trials of the flesh, and attained to the Father’s Voice; for in becoming
one with the Father, he no longer standeth in fear of anything in heaven or earth. The
glory of constant resurrection is before him forever.

25. All men who have not attained to this may be likened unto a man going up a slippery
hillside, who oft riseth high, but suddenly slideth low. They glorify themselves for their
own light and wisdom and good gifts, rejoicing for self-sake for the glories that have
fallen upon them. But they are cowards.

26. Nevertheless, the Creator created a great man amongst these; and such is the
unbelieving man. He hath neither gold nor silver, nor house nor land; and he is without
spiritual sight or spiritual hearing; but his glory is in understanding his own

27. He it is that subdueth the forest, and tameth the beasts of the field to man’s service. He
goeth alone in the dark, fearing naught. He followeth not the course of any man, but
searcheth for himself; the priest cannot make him believe, nor can the angels of heaven;
none can subdue his judgment. He beholdeth the glory of the earth and of manhood. He
calleth to the multitude, saying: Why permit ye others, even priests, to think for you?
Arise, O thou, and be a man! Arise, O thou, and be a woman!

28. He inspireth of the earth and for the earth; through his arms are tyrants and evil kings
overthrown. Through him are doctrines and religions sifted to the bottom, and the
falsehood and evil in them cast aside. Yea, who but Ormazd could have created so great a
man as the unbeliever?

29. And these two men, the Faithist and the unbeliever, do mostly all the good that is
done in the world; the one laboreth at the top of the hill, calling upward; the other

laboreth at the bottom of the hill, pushing upward.

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