© Kit Constable Maxwell

Chapter 4.


The story of mankind's spiritual awakening, and of the part we play in it.
© Kit Constable Maxwell


In the last three chapters we have journeyed some 15 billion years. We have come from the Big Bang and the formation of the planets, to the establishment of life and the birth of awareness. We are now at a cross-roads where we need to redefine our sense of origin and our sense of destiny. While humans owe their lives to evolution, this factor alone can no longer be considered the sole cause of our existence. Did our god make us, or did we invent a succession of philanthropic deities to comfort us in our anxiety at finding ourselves alone in the universe....

Are we directed by divine decree, or by the chaos theory, one which is consistently unquantifiable and observably unpredictable in its disorder; a theory that is characterised by the observation that 'if things weren't the way they were, we wouldn't be the way we are....''

Humans must live out their lives according to biological constraints - those that fail, like the dinosaurs, will die. But biology falls short of describing our nature, for out of our physical experience of evolution has arisen a spiritual energy, a quality unbounded by our biological origins.

Reflection, devotion, remorse... these stimuli serve no biological function but are powerful experiences of the human condition. They belong to the aspect we call 'spirit', and their nature spans both life and time. The love of music, the power of art, the grief of bereavement, all belong to an inner dimension peculiar to humans - that of emotion, or more simply, feeling.


This dichotomy creates tension in our lives, and I see our generation now poised between the instinctual needs of our animal heritage and the intellectual needs of our spiritual calling. We court an exciting, demanding and ultimately rewarding destiny. Embodied, our mind is shackled - discarnate, our mind is free. Our task here is to learn to unite with that freedom and to accept responsibility for it.... This is called the expansion of conscious awareness.

Proving the existence of 'spirit' to a non believer can be difficult, in that it challenges established scientific reasoning. We don't like to accept things we can't prove. As an example, many scientists and doctors are quick to discredit children's extraordinary and often well documented claims to have witnessed their own conception, gestation or the powerful experience of their birth - on the grounds that the baby's brain is insufficiently formed to record, store and retrieve such memory6. I have no argument with this biological observation but I believe it is an over simplified perspective driven only by our love of logic.

6 Stanislas Grof's well documented accounts of pre-natal awarenessare are recorded in his book 'The Holotropic Mind'; see bibliography.

The baby has a spiritual inheritance, derived from generation after generation of evolutionary development - and it is this indefinable quality that breathes life into the human foetus. A baby's perception may be limited by its ability to express it, but to drive a wedge between humanity and the spiritual energies that distinguish it is a flawed basis for evaluation. In short, what we do not understand, I suggest we should accept as a possibility, unconstrained by logic, science or rationale. 'Reason' is not the language of the spirit.

We strive to find a purpose in life, a vocation, a calling. What are we here for, where are we heading and what, in the final analysis, was the point of it all? How do we comprehend our unprecedented heritage where evolution has encountered no boundaries, and the vigour of change has run its unstoppable course. What of the past, driven as it was by the unbridled whim of natural selection? Was it Chance or was it Creation? What of the present, and our curious psycho-social dilemma, free in spirit and yet captive in body? And what of the future?

The hum of mankind's spiritual awareness has broken the silence of 4 billion years, and won't now be stopped by apathy or denial. Are we ready for new beginnings, or do we steer our experience of life solely to requite our earthly needs? Do we migrate to a rarefied spiritual realm, untethered by our animal origins, or do we dwell in unquestioning obedience to our manmade religions and traditions? Does life demand some personal input and if so, how, what and where? We have achieved much in the physical realm, generally at the expense of our social and spiritual health.

The disparities of our collective ambitions reveal our potential for destruction; destruction in our relationships, where insecurity engenders enmity and hate, and litigation dwells where once there was love; destruction in our social orders, and our racial, cultural and religious intolerance. We neglect family values, social respect and mutual harmony and all the tribal attributes that brought us through history to this epoch of personal choice. These changes are all aspects of our evolving world and of our ill-cherished relationships to each other.

But our long, unfathomable journey through time has also brought us a profound intellectual gift - a capacity for spiritual awareness and a true interface with the Divine. We can nurture our gift, or we can neglect it. But our changing experience of Life and the collective energy of evolution won't let us ignore it. While we inherit our body without question or option, our spirit remains dormant until stimulated. The destiny of mankind's continued evolution lies not in the meaningless drift of a wandering soul but in our active search for spiritual awareness and the cultivation of higher human values.

Spiritual growth then is the intangible prize of life, and the one goal and purpose of our existence. Our Planet Earth is the forum for this spiritual honing, and crisis, pain and sometimes joy are among the many triggers of feeling that we will experience in the cause of spiritual growth.

Our quest for meaning - a family affair

Behind the sometimes obscure message of the world's religions, behind the social and moral dictates of history, there dwells one ever present quest, mankind's search for spiritual enlightenment. The rhythm of our spiritual evolution is here to stay; the primitive and faltering steps of our biological evolution have suddenly exploded into a complex and unpredictable experience of indefinable power and immeasurable consequences. For all those aeons of time since life first developed on this planet, we were unable and unready to comprehend these invisible inner stimuli. This has now changed; our potential for awareness doesn't just start when we're born, and it doesn't stop when we die. The greater our experience of collective awareness in this life, the greater will be our experience of it in the afterlife.

We are steered by energies we don't understand, driven by sentiments we can't control. As teenagers we expect life to deliver according to our expectations. We demand much of our parents, as they did of theirs. In our twenties we search for love and success, but we find disappointment. Our youthful ambitions tarnish with age and tough realities emerge to guide our earthly life. Perhaps, in our thirties, our trust is betrayed; we blame others for our disappointments, like our boss, our partner, or fate; we may take refuge in our work, or in some social, political or religious cause; we become disillusioned, distracted, depressed. By forty we are facing, maybe, a crisis of identity, or a crisis of destiny, or crises of vocation and value and need. Our life slowly stalls and we find ourselves spiralling into a spiritual limbo.

We emerge from each stage wounded and cynical, but unwittingly and sometimes unwillingly wiser. We come to review our expectations of life, and begin to feel what we think. This is the beginning of our journey in time, the awakening of our emotional depths. This is where we find ourselves compelled to look for some answers to the mysteries of life and the mysteries of our feelings, with a sense of longing for that lost quality of joy and vocation we once thought was ours. We seek a oneness with fate but don't know where to find it.

Many return to their ancestral religions as born again zealots, not so much through an act of faith as through an act of desperation. We experience a spiritual vacuum and take sometimes desperate measures to fill it.

Our humanity comprises Body, Mind and Spirit. The Body, evolved out of aeons of biological change, is our anchor in this physical world and the vehicle of expression for our questing Mind. Our Mind is the window on our inner self and the messenger for our restless spirit; and the Spirit is our bridge to the non corporeal realm of inner enlightenment, our link with infinity and our guide to divinity. The Spirit is our higher self, the 'god within', the manifestation of truth and love, our Soul. .

Our Soul is our undiscovered glory; it is a brimming cup of the ocean we call God - both individually and uniquely us, and at the same time, God. We don't journey to God; our god is already here. 'God' is an energy, not an entity; we try to make him into a 'father' so we can understand him from our literal human perspective; but he is neither father nor mother, white nor black, and for as long as we try to picture him in this way we miss the point of our own godly potential; development of the spirit is the product of our conscious input and spiritual progression is our sole responsibility.

In the past 30,000 years there have arisen a plethora of diverse religions, all designed to serve the needs of the day. As our intellectual perspectives change, so do our religions. Spiritual needs cry louder than cultural ones, and fashionable new whims regularly ruffle our religious traditions. To encounter spiritual energy is our calling, and spiritual growth is our destiny. So how do we ensnare this transient treasure?

The Universe is composed of balanced energies, and Karma is the great law of universal balance that guides, teaches and generates spiritual awareness throughout our evolving history. Thoughts, too, are universal energies; thoughts of love belong to the soul and attract like energies. Thoughts of anger, fear and intolerance belong to the ego and attract negativity, mistrust and, on a collective scale, wars. Karma is the energy that restores balance to these opposing forces.

The West has traditionally mistrusted that which the East has taken for granted - the phenomenon of reincarnation. Despite Christ's assurance that he and his followers would 'rise from the dead', Christians have never taken this to mean reincarnation - at least not on this planet.... The difficulty with reincarnation is that it puts our sciences on a spot by demanding a temporal answer to a spiritual question. We find it easier to avoid questions like these, and hope the problem will just go away.....

Many leading fathers of the Christian faith, notably Origen (250 AD), have interpreted the Bible's positive teaching on reincarnation. Origen was the first reliable chronicler of the developing Christian church, which had sprung from a diverse collection of self powered social groups from around 75 AD onwards, each claiming adherence to the true teachings of their long dead messiah. It was Origen's misfortune to become caught up in political jostling between Constantinople and Rome. After two successive Popes had been murdered, apparently by Theodora, Constantinople's tyrannical first lady, the third, her chosen successor, agreed to brand Origen a heretic, thus robbing Christianity of one of the key professors of its true and original teaching. Theodora ordered all his books to be tracked down and burnt in what became an unparalleled act of literary vandalism7. The influential Gnostic gospels which stemmed from the same period acknowledged reincarnation as a fact of spiritual life.

7 Source 'Edgar Case on Reincarnation' , see bibliography

Our left-brain (logic) is threatened by things it can't understand, can't control and can't rationalise; it craves the discipline and ritual which define the Western religions of Christianity and Judaism. These two religions, and their many variants, are vociferously orientated towards the external goal of "salvation". Conversely, right-brain (intuition) is more readily able to accept myth and legend as the motivating elements that power Eastern religions like Buddhism and Hinduism. These are typically oriented towards the inner values of "enlightenment". Gnosticism meanwhile embraced both these cultural perspectives by combining, rather laboriously, the component elements of Greek philosophy, Hinduism, Buddhism and Christianity8.

8 The medieval Franch Cathars were descended from the Gnostics

The ancient Egyptians believed in reincarnation and took great trouble to provide for the deceased's spiritual journey. The Greeks (under Plato's teaching), and the Buddhists, Hindus and Sikhs all subscribe in one way or another to the cult of reincarnation. The case for reincarnation is well documented today by the contemporary writings of many discarnate guides and their incarnate channels. Superstitious associations with spiritualism, ghosts and 'the dead' have long given way in the face of such consistent and authoritative words from mediums, sensitives and spirit communicators telling us of love, joy and compassion and the nature of our spiritual pathway through time.

Most of us can accept that our spirituality is a perpetual dynamic while our incarnation is but a fleeting experience. We dwell in spirit and spiritual considerations steer our karmic development.

To this one end, modern thinking holds, our soul chooses its own incarnation. This radical perspective is fundamental to an understanding of the purpose of life. We view this world from a discarnate perspective, and with the help of our soul guides, we choose an incarnation that will provide us the opportunity to balance our learning, a karmic blueprint. Spirit-guides including Gildas, Jane Robert's Seth, Meredith Young's Mentor, the Rosamund Lehman messages, the renowned seer Edgar Cayce and more recently Dr Karl Nowotny, (see bibliography) all describe in beautiful detail this discarnate perspective shunned by successive religions.

This unique and individual choice accounts for some of the apparent inequalities of life, for we all choose to incarnate at different levels to meet differing needs. From the lonely and the sick to the fulfilled and the empowered, all must be respected for their brave and individual choice. Our choices reflect the needs of family karma, national karma and racial karma in addition to our own individual needs; there is much interlinking of spiritual energies and much collective joy in the maturing of an enlightened soul.

Our soul chooses emotional, physical or material privations, that we might grow through self realisation. As humans we experience psychological wounds, unconscious emotions and unexpressed grief. This we may counter with a grin-and-bear it attitude where fear and anger are thinly veiled behind a sharp tongue, wanton criticism and a wilful wit. These, and more, are the hallmarks of a searching and loveless incarnate - one that has yet to find its own true, redemptive path.

The physical experiences of malfunction, degeneration, and deprivation all speak of pre-carnate choice, and can be a hateful experience of negativity and pain or, with trust and learning, a balancing experience of redemptive karma, accompanied by the growing development of spiritual fortitude. All suffering motivates spiritual change, though not always for the observably better, and will be a self-chosen path to our growing enlightenment. Our response is a matter of attitude; and attitude is the tough choice of Free Will....

A mother gives the last of her energy to a dying child

Very often these karmic choices are symbiotic. Matrimonial strife is a two sided experience - so is the experience of a mental or physical affliction for both parent and child. In the same way I consider the distressing experiences of social wrong doings may be powered by a symbiotic energy linking two or more souls together. In typically karmic style, the subjects may then experience the challenging events of life from the twin perspectives of winner and loser. We have to acknowledge our self-chosen fate, and navigate the path of our own destiny. We must work with fate and not against it. While fate guides our experience of life, our destiny results from the choices we make of our own free will. And the more knowledge we acquire, the more free will we have.

There are no depths of depravity to which mankind will not sink; Christian persecutions in the amphitheatres of ancient Rome, Jewish death camps, ethnic cleansing, drug addiction, infanticide, cruelty and humiliation of every description by mankind against his fellow beings. So too there is no end to the soul's quest for truth, the truth of spiritual reality and maturity that is the mother of love. We cannot know freedom until we know bondage; we cannot savour good until we've encountered the dry taste of hate and despair; we cannot know love without the soul-less experiences of hell we call evil. Our experiences educate us, and we cannot pretend to know what we haven't yet learned. The spirit is raw; wounds are not hidden with sweet talk and self delusion, but transformed with gut-level sentiments of strength, humility and love. This is spiritual evolution at work, repairing the damage of imbalance and igniting our dormant spiritual power.

We have many aspects of spiritual awareness, and many aspects of learning, more than can be fitted into one lifetime; so souls incarnate at different times, in part or in entirety, to meet different needs and to share different experiences of awakening. We are not alone; we are helped and supported by kindred souls, souls on other wavelengths and in other experiences of reality. Our supporters include twin souls, soul-mates and soul-guides. The great teachers, Buddha, Christ, Mohammed, the Virgin Mary, the gurus, saints and visionaries are all a part of our collective piritual identity. We are all treading a well worn path to spiritual enlightenment.

We are taught in the language and images that are appropriate to our diverse and ever changing culture, sometimes to the confusion of those differing cultures that assemble together at places of worship and pilgrimage. We perceive the widely differing styles of teachers like Mary of Fatima, Lourdes and Medjugorie, and that of Vassula, the Swiss based seer, or Mother Meera, the divinely incarnated avatar now teaching in Germany. Or even Sai Baba, the renowned miracle worker from Southern India. We use imagery to develop our primal beliefs, we and the societies that we dwell in. The soft, loving words of Mother Meera, encouraging, welcoming, forgiving, contrast sharply with the Lutheran style of Vassula.

Vassula is one of many whose followers have run into a wall of hierarchical hindrance. Vassula is the name of one Mrs Ryden, the Greek Orthodox wife of a Swiss Lutheran; she makes amazing claims of regular interviews with Christ and God and preaches dire, apocalyptic warnings. In November 1995 the Vatican banned her teaching, branding it theologically unsound.

Some may welcome bold exhortations to get their spirit moving; but we must take care to ensure that the decision is ours and not one implanted through the indomitable personalities of self powered reformers like Savonarola, (d. 1498), Luther, (d. 1546) and all the religious fundamentalists, Puritans and nonconformists who have accompanied us through history. To accept dire words of disempowerment from others is to insult our spirituality and the god-force that generated it. The sackcloth-and-ashes fetish so loved by Christians does not serve the needs of the spirit. Devils, hell and a whole litany of ungodly grief awaits the superstitious and unquestioning herd of mankind who are shepherded through their teachers' religious passions with scant regard for fact, let alone love or compassion.

In Bardo of Karmic Illusions (The Tibetan Book of The Dead) we are warned: "Oh nobly born, whatever fearful visions thou mayst see, recognise them to be thine own thought forms...." We have a way of seeing only what we want to see and of believing it to be true. We have a total responsibility to ourselves for our own development - only we can unlock the god within, and only we can judge the quality of our input for spiritual growth. To question the cult of Satan and the power of evil challenges the authority of our religious leaders, who have long used the medium of fear and superstition to hold human souls in the path of their chosen persuasion.

There is only one spiritual Truth, the universal truth of light and love. And there is only one route to this truth, the inner road of self discovery. And there is no devil, just a fearsome manifestation of unlimited negativity we call evil.

'Evil' is a powerful tool in the affairs of mankind. It is essentially a sin against the societies and religions that spawned it. Primitive tribes of today have no concept of evil, and no word for it. We behold evil to be a sin against another, a wrong which challenges our social order, our moral stance, and we call in our religions to add a bit of godly authority to our condemnation.

Inevitably societies and religions invented the 'DEVIL' to reinforce their worthy desire for social harmony, albeit one held together by the tyranny of fear. Churches have long thrived under that subtle thumbscrew of forced loyalty. I believe the 'DEVIL' serves the needs of the society, not the needs of the soul....

A traditional Christian image of St Michael and the Devil

We should seek to embrace the company of those who reflect our moral, social and spiritual values, while acknowledging the right of all to live out their self-chosen life to its full if unhappy conclusion. We must judge the sin, if there is one, not the sinner whose soul has chosen this path. We must cherish positivity and tolerate the negativity in which lie the seeds of mankind's search for meaning. In Christian terms we must 'turn the other cheek', but turn it with tolerance, not indifference.

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Table of Contents - click on any chapter to open it
Prologue                   Click here...
Space and Matter
Evolution of Life
Birth of Awareness
Spiritual Goals This page
Evolution and Astrology
Astrology and Fate
Light, Love and Feeling
Primal Scream
World Religions
Ethics of Caring
Thought Conditioning
Miracles and Prayer
Shadow and the Unconscious
Journey in Spirit
Pantheism and Matter
Appendix I
Glossary of Terms
Appendix II
Appendix III