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Esoteric Healing - Chapter V - The Process of Restitution
The picture I have outlined of the psychological background of all diseases will be long in painting; in the meantime, the contribution of medicine is indispensable. In spite of mistakes, faulty diagnosis and much error, humanity cannot do without its doctors, its surgeons and its hospitals. They are urgently needed, and will be for centuries to come. In this statement is no cause for discouragement. Humanity cannot be brought into a condition of perfect physical health immediately, though correct psychological training from infancy will do much in the course of a few decades. Wrong [482] conditions have been long developing. Modern medicine must become far more open-minded, more ready to endorse (after due professional proof) that which is new, which is in the nature of innovation and which is unusual. The barriers erected by specialized medicine must come down, and the new schools must be sought, instructed and investigated, and finally be included in the orthodox ranks. The new schools, such as those concerned with electro-therapy, the chiropractic schools, the dieticians who claim to cure all diseases through right foods, and the rather eccentric naturopaths, plus many other cults and schools, must not be so arrogantly sure that they have the whole story, that their approach is the only one or that they have a universal cure - all which is unique and definitely sure. These groups, particularly the chiropractors, have definitely damaged their cause and crippled their effort by their loudly shouted surety (in a field which is yet experimental), and by their constant attack upon orthodox medicine. The latter, in its turn, has limited itself by its failure to recognize what is good and right in the newer schools; it has been antagonized by their clamor for recognition, and by their lack of scientific methods. The desire of orthodox medicine is to protect the general public. This they needs must do in order to avoid the disasters which fanatics and untried methods would bring about, but they have gone too far in this respect. The school of thought which I have sponsored in these instructions will also be challenged, and this for a long time. However, the mental and psychological effects of the world war will greatly hasten the recognition of the psychological basis for disease and other troubles; modern medicine, therefore, faces its major opportunity.

A combination of true medical science (as produced by man down the ages under the inspiration of his divine nature), of the newer aspects of treatment as formulated by [483] the many emerging schools of thought, of practice and experiment, the recognition of the energies which condition man, working through the seven centers in his vital body, and of the astrological influences which equally condition him, via the inner man, will eventually produce the new medical approach which will keep man in good health, which will arrest disease in its earliest stages, and which will finally inaugurate that cycle in human affairs wherein disease and ill health will be exceptions and not the rule, as is the case today, and wherein death will be regarded as a happy and destined release and not, as is the case today, a dreaded enemy.

The second question is definitely concerned with the processes of death. It has been asked: What is the Tibetan's attitude towards cremation, and under what conditions should cremation be followed? It is a fortunate and happy thing that cremation is becoming increasingly the rule. Before so very long, burial in the ground will be against the law and cremation will be enforced, and this as a health and sanitation measure. Those unhealthy, psychic spots, called cemeteries, will eventually disappear, just as ancestor worship is passing out, both in the Orient - with its ancestor cults - and in the Occident - with its equally foolish cult of hereditary position.

By the use of fire, all forms are dissolved; the quicker the human physical vehicle is destroyed, the quicker is its hold upon the withdrawing soul broken. A great deal of nonsense has been told in current theosophical literature about the time equation in relation to the sequential destruction of the subtle bodies. It should be stated, however, that the moment that true death is scientifically established (by the orthodox doctor in charge of the case), and it has been ascertained that no spark of life remains in the physical body, cremation is then possible. This complete or true [484] death eventuates when the thread of consciousness and the thread of life are completely withdrawn from the head and the heart. At the same time, reverence and an unhurried attitude have their rightful place in the process. The family of the dead person need a few hours in which to adjust themselves to the fact of the imminent disappearance of the outer and usually loved form; due care must also be given to the formalities required by the state or the municipality. This time element has reference mainly to those who are left behind, to the living and not to the dead. The claim that the etheric body must not be rushed into the cremating flames, and the belief that it must be left to drift around for a stated period of several days, have also no true basis at all. There is no etheric need for delay. When the inner man withdraws from his physical vehicle he withdraws simultaneously from the etheric body. It is true that the etheric body is apt to linger for a long time on the "field of emanation" when the physical body is interred, and it will frequently persist until complete disintegration of the dense body has taken place. The process of mummifying, as practised in Egypt, and of embalming, as practised in the West, have been responsible for the perpetuation of the etheric body, sometimes for centuries. This is particularly the case when the mummy or embalmed person was of an evil character during life; the hovering etheric body is then often "possessed" by an evil entity or evil force. This is the cause of the attacks and the disasters which often dog the steps of those who discover ancient tombs and their inhabitants, ancient mummies, and bring them and their possessions to light. Where cremation is the rule, there is not only the immediate destruction of the physical body and its restitution to the fount of substance, but the vital body is also promptly dissolved and its forces swept away by the current of flame into the reservoir of vital energies. Of that [485] reservoir it has ever been an inherent part, either in form or in a formless condition. After death and cremation these forces still exist but are absorbed into the analogous whole. Ponder on this statement, for it will give you the clue to the creative work of the human spirit. If delay is necessary from family feeling or municipal requirements, cremation should follow death within thirty-six hours; where no reason for delay exists, cremation can be rightly permitted in twelve hours. It is wise, however, to wait twelve hours in order to ensure true death. [486]

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