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From Bethlehem to Calvary - Chapter Four - The Third Initiation - The Transfiguration
These three major initiations, the first, the third and the fifth, constitute the three syllables of the Word made flesh; they embody the musical chord of Christ's life, as they will be embodied in the life of all who follow in His steps. Through reorientation to new modes of living and of being we pass through the necessary stages of adaptation of the vehicles of life, up to that mountain-top where the divine in us is revealed in all its beauty. Then we pass to a "joyful Resurrection," and to that eternal identification with God which is the everlasting experience of all who are perfected. We might depict the process as follows:
 
1st Initiation
New Birth
Initiation
Beginning
Appearance
3rd Initiation
Transfiguration
Revelation
Transition
Quality
5th Initiation
Resurrection
Completion
Consummation
Life
 
This is the first of the mountain experiences. We have had the cave experience and the stream initiation. Each of them has done its work, each revealing more and more divinity in the Man, Christ Jesus. The experience of Christ, as we have been seeing, was to pass from one process of at-one-ment to another. One of the prime objectives of His [138] mission was to resolve the dualities in Himself, producing unity and synthesis. What are these dualities which are to be resolved into unity before the spirit in man can shine forth in its radiance? We might list five of them in order to gain an idea of what must be done and in order to understand the magnitude of Christ's achievement. Transfiguration is not possible until these unifications have been made.

First, man and God must be fused and blended into one functioning whole. God, made flesh, must so dominate and control the flesh that it constitutes no hindrance to the full expression of divinity. Such is not the case with the average man. With him divinity may be present, but it is deeply hidden. However, today, through our psychological investigations, much is being discovered as to this higher and lower self, and the nature of that which is called at times the "subliminal self" is emerging through a study of the reaction of the outer active self to the activities of that inner subjective guidance. That man is dual has been recognized everywhere, and this in itself presents a problem with which psychologists are constantly confronted. Personalities seem to function in a "split" manner; people are distraught because of this cleavage. We hear of multiple personalities, and the necessity for integration, for coordination of the different aspects of man, and the fusing of his nature in one functioning whole becomes more and more urgent. The recognition of man's reach and the constant pull of the world of transcendental values have produced an acute problem for the world. The primitive and the transcendental; the outer conscious man and the inner subjective subliminal man; the higher and the lower self; the personality and the individuality; the soul and the body - how are these to be reconciled? Of the higher values, man is ceaselessly conscious. Of the man who wills to do good, and of the nature which in opposition causes him to perform evil, all the saints testify.

The entire human family today is split on the rock of duality. Either the personality is dual and therefore [139] unmanageable, or groups and nations are divided into opposing camps, and again duality emerges in intense dynamic difficulty.

It is integration which Christ so fully exemplified, thus resolving the dualities of higher and lower in Himself, making "of twain one new man," (Eph. II, 15.) and it was this "new man" which shone forth at the Transfiguration before the startled gaze of the three apostles. It is this basic integration or unification which religion should aim to produce, and it is this coordination between two fundamental aspects of human nature - the natural and the divine - which education should effect.

This problem of the two selves, which Christ so strikingly synthesized in Himself, is the strictly human problem. The secondary self, in contradistinction to the divine self, is a fact in nature, however we may try to evade the issue and refuse recognition of its existence. The "natural man" exists, as does the "spiritual man," and in the interaction of the two the human problem is focused. Man himself makes this clear. In speaking of man, Dr. Bosanquet says that:

"...his innate self-transcendence, his ineradicable passion for the whole, makes it inevitable that out of the superfluity which he cannot systematize under the good, he will form a secondary and negative self, a disinherited self, hostile to the imperative domination of the good which is, ex hypothesi, only partial. And this discord is actually necessary to the good; for it sets it its characteristic problem, the conquest of the bad. And the good is necessary to the evil, for beyond rebellion against the good, the would-be totality of the disinherited self can find no other unity."
- The Value and Destiny of the Individual, by B. Bosanquet, p. 210.

Here lies man's problem, and here lie his triumph and the expression of his essential divinity. The higher self exists, and finally and inevitably must gain the victory over the lower self. One of the things that is happening today is the [140] discovery of the existence of this higher self, and many are the testimonies to its nature and qualities. Through a consideration of the self in every man we are steadily approximating an understanding of divinity.

Behind the manifestation of Jesus Christ lay aeons of experience. God had been expressing Himself through natural processes, through humanity as a whole, and through specific individuals, as the ages slipped away. Then Christ came, and in process of time, as a definite fulfilment of the past and as a guarantee of the future, He synthesized in Himself, in one transcendent Personality, all that had been achieved and all that was immediate in human experience. He was a Personality, as well as a divine Individuality. His life with its quality and its purpose has set its seal upon our civilization, and His demonstrated synthesis is the inspiration of the present. This consummated Personality, synthesizing in Itself all that preceded in human evolution, and expressing all that immediately may be, is God's great gift to man.

Christ, as the Personality that healed the division in human nature, and Christ, as the synthesis of the higher and the lower aspects of divinity, is the glorious heritage of mankind today. This is what was revealed at the Transfiguration.

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