Rosicrucian Writings Online


[H. Spencer Lewis]

[From The Rosicrucian Digest October 1935]
AMONG the many historical events which distinguished the month of October is one which is celebrated in several countries and is known in the United States as Columbus day. This anniversary falls on Saturday, October 12, this year.
The story of Columbus and his discoveries, as reported in the school histories and in the popular encyclopedias, is so erroneous in all important details that were it not for its fairy story nature which appeals to the youthful and satisfies adults' longing for adventure and romance, it would have been altered long ago. For many years various uncovered records and historical documents have pointed out the errors in the popular account, but since there is no commercial profit to be gained by revising the story and discarding millions of dollars worth of books, the whole fictitious story of the life and death of Columbus remains.
There is ample evidence in records still preserved in Spain and Portugal, and in some museums throughout the world, to prove that Columbus was not a poor man, nor a mere adventurer seeking only certain commercial or mercenary benefits for his people and others. Nor was his name actually that which is attributed to him. Nor was he of a family whose humble position in the world supported the other elements of the romance.
Columbus was the son of a man who had been knighted and whose heraldic arms were recorded in several countries, and who was learned and highly respected, and held not only a high social position but a very close contact with royalty. The son, too, was knighted and inherited the heraldic peerage of his father. He was learned not only in the art of navigation, but in many sciences, and particularly in ancient sciences and mystical arts.
It is generally overlooked by historical writers that Columbus was the author of a number of books on mystical philosophy, and having naught to do with navigation, and these are still in existence and preserved. Of importance to us is the fact that he became a knight of the Order of the Temple, an affiliation of the Rosicrucian Brotherhood, and like many other eminent mystics and philosophers who had been admitted to the Knighthood of the Temple he wrote and left as a heritage a number of mystical manuscripts in mystical cipher. For over a century researchers have been puzzled by the mystical emblems and signature which Columbus added to his regular signature on the personal records of his journeys and discoveries, and which have been preserved for posterity. However, as soon as one becomes acquainted with his real name, his former place of residence, his affiliations and interests, the mystical emblems attached to his signature, his cipher codes and his other writings become understandable.
Furthermore, Columbus did not arbitrarily decide to make an adventure on the seas for the purpose of finding a shorter and better means of international trade, or for commercial purposes at all. The records which we have seen plainly indicate that he was selected by the Knights of the Temple to carry out an ancient, mystical decree of the brotherhood of the Knights of the Temple looking toward the establishment of a new Jerusalem in the Western World. We have called attention to the fact that it is untrue that the scientific men at the time of Columbus were unaware of the earth's true form, and that the incentive prompting Columbus to make a voyage into the "unknown seas" was to prove a particular theory of some kind, for there is evidence that even in the Tenth Century, Alcuin, the mystic philosopher and teacher, possessed a globe representing the form of the earth with continents marked upon it, and tradition records how the mystics of Egypt left evidence in the Great Pyramid showing all the continents on the face of the earth as they now exist with various signs and symbols allocated to them. At any rate, the writings of Columbus reveal that he knew positively what he would find on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, and his writings prove, furthermore, that he contacted the main land of America long before the incident that is recorded in the popular histories. The letter and record that he prepared for the Queen of Spain was a letter intended to satisfy the commercial and mercenary demands of the state and its people, while in the record kept by him and carefully signed and sealed are revealed his other and earlier contacts with several points of the North American Continent, and the purpose of them.
But all of this is a story that will be told some day in book form when the time is right. We have referred to it a number of times vaguely in order to establish the fact that this knowledge regarding the real explorations of Columbus is known and has been examined.
As we have said, Columbus and those who fostered the original plan for his journeys sought to carry out an old mystical decree to establish a new Jerusalem in the Western World. This had naught to do with the Jerusalem of Palestine, but it was in keeping with the ideas promulgated several centuries later by Sir Francis Bacon in his book, The New Atlantis. In fact, what Bacon wrote was merely an extension of the original plans which were familiar to Columbus, and many others, and when the Rosicrucians first came to America in 1694 they carried out a second coming to America of the spirit of the new Jerusalem.
As centuries have passed we have come to learn what the mystics of antiquity always knew, that there is within man and within his consciousness and within the reach of his psychic and physical faculties a greater world for exploration than this poor old earth has reported to all of the venturesome travelers of the past. There are new worlds and greater worlds to explore and to conquer, and most of these are in the heart and mind of man himself. Another greater world lies just above us in the Cosmic space. No dangerous adventures are necessary, nor is it required that huge ships or mechanical birds of the air be employed for man to explore these greater worlds. Man has as a birthright the ability to reach to the greatest heights and the greatest depths, the inside and the outside of the whole of the universe. The richest rewards that have come to mankind throughout all the ages of civilization have come as a result of explorations in the mental and spiritual world of man as compared with all of his ventures in the material world. The greatest asset of life is life itself, and the second gift of God is the ability to comprehend and understand, to achieve, to master, to attain. In the processes involved, however, lie the many fields of investigation, research, and exploration, and every minute and hour spent by man in sailing the seas of life during contemplation and in delving into the mysteries of life studiously and analytically, bring him untold benefits which all the wealth of the world cannot buy nor take away from him.
Therefore, while we are celebrating Columbus Day and letting our thoughts turn toward the marvelous changes that have come into the Western World through the so-called discovery of America, let us ponder for a few moments upon the greater achievements that have been accomplished by those who have explored man's inner nature, and the benefits that have come through our discovery of God, His spiritual laws, and the Divine principles of life.
Another important anniversary during the month of October is that which may be celebrated on the 17th of the month, for it was on this day of the year 1927 that the first passenger crossed the Atlantic in an airplane, thus showing how man can conquer other domains than those that are on the earth. The gradual mastership of the air is one of our present-day feats, and some day will constitute an interesting and important point in history. We find that the 27th of the month is the anniversary of the birth of Theodore Roosevelt, the really great American born in 1858. The 16th of the month is the anniversary of the unfortunate execution of Marie Antoinette in 1793. Sarah Bernhardt was born on the 22nd of the month in the year 1845. It is ridiculously claimed by certain ecclesiastical histories that on the 28th of October 4004 B. C., Adam, the first man was born. This strange statement was officially established in the British Empire by an act of the British Parliament. Also, on the 28th of the month we have the anniversary of the unveiling of the Statue of Liberty in the year 1886. And this is the month in which the so-called Indian Summer of the United States gradually manifests itself if we are to have any Indian Summer at all. Students and those interested in schools and universities of learning will be interested in knowing that on the 20th of October in 1896 the so-called College of New Jersey celebrated its 150th anniversary and adopted its new name of Princeton University. Therefore, this month it will celebrate its 189th year of existence. Harvard University held its first commencement on October 9, 1642. Therefore, this month we can celebrate the 293rd anniversary of that event. It was on the 15th of October, 1582, that the Gregorian Calendar was adopted with all of its fallacies and inconsistencies, and yet we hesitate to make the proper changes because of the many routine matters that would be disarranged or disorganized by a change of the calendar.
At the end of this month we have the old mystical holiday called Hallowe'en, thus bringing the month to a close with the beginning of a number of seasonal holidays that will keep us busy, and perhaps keep us happy until the first of the new year.

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