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A Problem Solved and a Confession

We are our own children. (Pythagoras)

It was the idea of my having lived before upon this earth, and of living again upon it in the future, that took hold of my whole nature when the Greater Light dawned upon my soul. This concept of Reincarnation took a great load off my heart, and where I had well-nigh despaired and gone stark mad over the great problem of justice, I now saw clearly and plainly that a living Wisdom governed the dark problems of life, and that chance and inheritance from parents or grandparents of moral qualities were but fantasies of those unlearned in the A. B. C. of human affairs. To me there was now no further room for doubt. Even the Faith in which I had been nurtured justified my inner convictions, to say nothing of the millions of adherents of other Religions to whom Reincarnation is a fundamental truth. The gradual evolution of the soul was clearly indicated by St. Paul when he wrote, "My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you." The Bible records that John the Baptist was the reincarnation of Elijah, see Mal. iv. 5, Matt. xvii. 10-13, and Matt. xi. 13-14. And in the incident of the man who was born blind the question "Who did sin, this man or his parents that he was born blind?" proves beyond a doubt that the doctrine of Reincarnation was well rooted in the minds of the people of that period. It was a Doctrine of the Christian Church until the year 543 A.D. when at a local synod (not a General Council) at Constantinople this age-long and almost universally-held doctrine was ruled out of Orthodox Christianity. The light that Reincarnation throws upon human life is far too precious to ignore or discount, it is vital to an understanding of the problems of life. I am one who from birth was cast in a strange mould; one who combined in his nature the God-like and the infernal to a degree passing his comprehension utterly. With quick sympathies for those in pain, with a genuine horror for the taking of life, and a sense of justice that drove me oft-times to deeds seemingly mad, I also had to struggle with evil tendencies which grew and increased in power from boyhood to manhood. And I worked on as one amazed. Try as I might to repress and change my evil nature, it still lived and proclaimed its presence and strength. Then I turned on myself and questioned: Whence come these evil things that are mine? I don’t want them, nor have l cultivated them. I have always, since the age of thinking, trodden them down; then where do they come from, and why have I possession of them? In this strain I enquired for a long, dull time and could get no answer, for it is surely a strange thing for one to find oneself evil and yet to hate evil. Little wonder the superstitious sometimes believe in Calvinism—in the innate and foreordained wickedness of certain members of the human family. In anguish of heart I sought for an explanation, but none came. I still sought, and all the time tried to change my wayward tendencies. And as I fought on against my lower Me, my nature expanded a little and the higher Me became active and made me try to do a really good work. Yet my mind was distressed utterly, for all seemed a horrid injustice, where no one received his right desserts. Just at that time the light of Reincarnation illuminated my path with its doctrine of justice and ultimate perfection of man through re-birth. Joyfully I responded to those grand teachings; intuitively and in a flash I understood my own poor nature, and understanding it understood others. Clearly I saw that the brave have in the past been cowards, the perfect man had been the man of protean vices. For Reincarnation under the Just Law transforms selfish, "sinning humankind into one world and wide family of Great Souls, and in the sweet bitterness that came over me as I mused upon what I must have been in my own past lives to have built up so sorry a character for this one, I came at length to a place of peace that naught that I might find of evil in my lower Me could disturb, for I knew that only that soul that has tasted of evil can become permanently good. Then I was glad and went on my way working, for:

I know I am deathless.
I know that this orbit of mine cannot be swept by a carpenter's compass;
And whether I come to my own today, or in ten thousand or ten million years,
I can cheerfully take it now or with equal cheerfulness can wait.
—Walt Whitman

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Arthur E. Massey

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