As we have traced the course of the embryo in the various orders of creatures, we can, in the same way, examine its whole history of life and death, and it will yield some very interesting results.
It has already been pointed out that the seven energies from Buddhi to the element "Earth" make for life; and death takes place when they disintegrate. We have also observed that all creatures pass through four stages of development, and this will apply not only to the Viviparous and Oviparous but to Trees and Germs as well; only in the case of the last two they assume physical, embryonic form as soon as they reach the element "Earth"; but all creatures without exception have to pass through four stages of development in the course of their life.
Element of Activity: After this development through four stages has taken place, a creature becomes active; and this may be called the stage or element of its activity.
Food: After the element or stage of activity comes that of Food, by which a creature continues to live and act.
Death: After Food comes the stage of Death; and then a new-cycle of life begins once more.
Course of Life and Death of the Viviparous: The Viviparous, starting their life in Buddhi, pass through four stages of development, and assume physical form in Prakrtic Ether. Then comes their element of activity, which is Air and after this is their Food, and it belongs to the element Fire, that is, the Vegetable kingdom, belonging to the Fire-class, as already explained; and the Vegetable kingdom consists of three elements, Fire, Water and "Earth". After Food comes the element of Death; and that, after integrated "Earth", is disintegrated "Earth". That is, when "Earth" disintegrates, or when there is foul smell, the Viviparous die.
Course of Life and Death of the Oviparous: As has already been pointed out, there are two kinds of the Oviparous, the first rising in Purushic Ether, and the second in Prakrtic Ether; and passing through four stages, the first assume physical form in the element Fire (or Trees), and the second in the element Water. Then comes their element of activity; and of the first kind it is Water, and of the second the "Earth". After this comes their Food, which in the first case is integrated "Earth" (or Germs in their original condition), and in the second disintegrated "Earth" (or Germs in the second stage of development) After Food comes Death; and the first kind, like the viviparous, die in disintegrated "Earth", and the second kind in disintegrated Water.
Course of Life and Death of Trees: The same scheme of thought applies to Trees. Their source of origin is the element Fire, and their four stages of development are (1) Fire, (2) Water, (3) Integrated "Earth", and (4) Disintegrated "Earth". Then comes their element of activity, which is disintegrated Water; after which comes their food, which is disintegrated Fire (or disintegrated vegetable kingdom); and then comes their death, which takes place in disintegrated Air. This means that Trees grow and flourish on stagnant water and mouldering plants, and cannot live in foul air.
Course of Life and Death of Germs: The course of life and death of Germs is also similar. They start and complete their cycle of embryonic life in the element "Earth", but their four stages of development are (1) Integrated "Earth", (2) Disintegrated "Earth", (3) Disintegrated Water, (4) Disintegrated Fire; that is, they are fully developed in moldering vegetable matter. Then comes their element of activity, which is disintegrated Air; that is, when the Air is foul germs become active, and this is but another way of saying that germs foul the air. After this comes their Food, which is disintegrated Prakrtic Ether. Then comes their death, which takes place in Purushic Ether.
A Table of Life and Death: The course of Life and Death in respect of the four orders of creatures may be illustrated as follows:
|Integrated Energies||Viviparous||Oviparous (Purushic)||Oviparous (Prakrtic)||Trees||Germs|
|Ether (Purushic)||Third Stage||Conception|
|Ether (Prakrtic)||Mature Stage (Child in Embryo)||Second Stage||Conception|
|Air||Element of Activity||Third Stage||Second Stage|
|Fire||Mature Stage (Egg)||Third Stage||Conception|
|Water||Food||Element of Activity||Mature Stage (Egg)||Second Stage|
|Earth||Food||Element of Activity||Third Stage(Seed)||Conception (Germ)|
|"Earth"||Death||Death||Food||Mature Stage (Seed)||Second Stage|
|Water||Death||Death||Death||Element of Activity||Third Stage|
|Fire||Death||Death||Death||Food||Mature Stage (Developed Germ)|
|Air||Death||Death||Death||Death||Element of Activity|
Examination of the Table of Life and Death: An examination of the Table of Life and Death will be found to yield some very interesting results; and, if our conclusions be correct, we can deduce from it the law of Life and Death for all creatures made manifest below:
1. All creatures pass through four stages to become mature. Then comes their element of activity; then Food. This state lasts for some time, activity and food following each other in succession; and in the end comes death, after which a new cycle of life begins.
2. The birth and death of all creatures takes place in the five elements, integrated or disintegrated.
3. The element of activity of the Viviparous is Air; and Hands, the instruments of human action, are related to this element.
The Purushic Oviparous have Water for their element of activity, and the Prakrtic ones the element "Earth". In actual life we see that it is so. The Fish have water for their element, and Birds have "Earth". Some, like Snakes, partake of both.
Trees have disintegrated Water for their element of activity: that is, when the seed is watered, and water stagnates and disintegrates, the seed becomes active.
Germs have disintegrated Air for their element of activity: this explains the common idea that germs fly in and foul the air.
4. We can see the Food line of each order from this table. For instance, the Viviparous live on the vegetable kingdom consisting of three elements Fire, Water, and the element "Earth". Within this "food-line", or the three elements, we get other orders of creatures at different stages of development, all of which constitute the food of the Viviparous. That is to say, the Viviparous can feed on the Purushic Oviparous from the stage of maturity to that of food or growth, till they die; but on Prakrtic Oviparous only so long as they have not taken food or grown; and if they do so, they will die, for the food-line of the line of the Viviparous for the food-line of the Prakrtic Oviparous is the death. The Viviparous can live on the Viviparous too, but only when the latter are reduced to the three elements, Fire, Water, and "Earth". That is to say, so long as the Viviparous have Air in them or breathe, or so long as they have Ether in them or move, they do not constitute the food of the Viviparous. In other words the Viviparous live on dead but un-decaying Viviparous. As soon as the "Earth" of the latter disintegrates, that is when they emit foul smell, they would cause death of the Viviparous.
Similarly, the Purushic Oviparous live on the Viviparous in a state of integrated "Earth", that is, dead but not decaying. They also live on Prakrtic Oviparous in their embryonic or mature condition (Eggs), but not when they have their food and grow. They also live on young Seeds; and on Germs in their first stage, identified with "Earth".
In the same way the Prakrtic Oviparous live on dead viviparous and dead Purushic oviparous; seeds in their mature state; and germs in their second stage of development.
The food-line of Trees may be examined in the same manner. They live on the viviparous and oviparous when their very form (Fire) has been disintegrated; on disintegrated vegetable matter (Fire-class), and germs in their mature state.
The food-line of Germs extends to all orders of creatures in their advanced state of death.
After food comes Death; and the viviparous and Purushic oviparous die when their "Earth" disintegrates, that is, when their body gives out foul smell; the Prakrtic oviparous die when Water disintegrates; trees when Air disintegrates; and Germs when Purushic Ether disintegrates.
5. All creatures partake of the "Earth" as a common element, and there is nothing else that is equally common to all. Consequently all of them contain Germs in their first stage of life, for the element "Earth" is identified with them. But the viviparous and Purushic oviparous can live with germs in their first stage of conception only; and when germs complete their second stage of development, they cause their death. The Prakrtic oviparous are killed by germs in their third stage of development; while Trees are killed by them when they become active and foul the Air.
These and many more interesting conclusions can be drawn from the Table of Life and Death, and we shall revert to it when we consider the Hindu theory of Medicine and the cause and cure of disease.
A Summary of Conclusions: We may now summarize the conclusions.
- All Hindu theories of life in the manifest commence with the conception of the Golden Egg; and all their ideas of the universe can be derived from it.
- The correct position of the Golden Egg is like that of a "bowl, with its mouth inclined, and bottom upward".
- There are seven principal energies of life, from Buddhi to the element "Earth". Corresponding to these there are seven members of the Solar system the Sun corresponding to Buddhi; the Moon to the Mind; Mars to Ether; Mercury to Air; Jupiter to Fire; Venus to Water; and Saturn to the element "Earth".
- The Earth on which we live has a very peculiar position. If the other members of the Solar system be said to represent each an individual energy of life, the Earth of ours represents all the five elements; and being near the Moon, it partakes of the energy of the Moon; and as the latter derives its energy from the Sun, the Earth has the energy of the Sun as well.
- All members of the Solar system lie along the Ellipse, even as the seven principal energies of the Golden Egg, in order of their respective distances from the Sun, as follows: Sun, Mercury, Venus, Moon (Earth), Mars, Jupiter and Saturn.
- If this Ellipse be re-arranged in the form of a Wave, a new order of the members of the Solar system, in respect of their distances from the Sun, will be formed as follows: Sun, Moon (Earth), Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn. This gives us the order of the days of the week.
- The form of the Wave corresponds to that of a Snake, specially a hooded Cobra.
- This would explain the origin of Snake-worship as well as Snake hostility in the world, together with several other religious and quasi-religious ideas and practices not fully understood at present.
- Time, in the unmanifest is associated with Buddhi or the Sun; in the manifest with Air or Breath. The idea of the association of Time with Buddhi can be derived from the form of the Wave referred to above.
- From the same we understand that life passes through four stages of development.
- We also understand from this the idea of the "pairs of opposites:" that the Sun (Buddhi), Ether, Fire, and "Earth" belong to one class; while the Moon (Mind), Air, and Water to another. The former may be called Purushic, and the latter Prakrtic.
- There are four orders of created beings, corresponding to these four Purushic energies: the Viviparous related to Buddhi as their source; the Oviparous to Ether; Trees or the vegetable kingdom to Fire; and Germs to "Earth".
- The stages of the creation and manifestation of these four kinds of creatures, together with their elements of activity, food, and death, form a very interesting study, and show their connection with one another in both life and death.
- Creatures produce their likes, owing to the magnetic property of Ether, the principal element in which life becomes manifest. Accordingly the scope of the creation of a new species of the Viviparous and Oviparous is strictly limited.
- The Golden Egg may be divided into two halves, Purushic and Prakrtic. All manifest birth and death takes place in the Prakrtic half.
- The Heart, being on the Purushic side, is Purushic in character of the two lungs, one lies on the Purushic, and the other on the Prakrtic side. On this analogy, all parts of a creature on the Purushic side are Purushic, and on the Prakrtic side Prakrtic.
- All life becomes manifest through four stages; so does Time. Accordingly the Golden Egg may be divided into four parts; the first belonging to Buddhi, second to Mind, third to Purushic Ether, and the fourth to Prakrtic Ether. The last will contain also the four remaining energies, Air, Fire, Water, and "Earth", as well as the disintegrating energies which cause death.
- The four Ages of Time, viz., Satya, Treta, Dvapara, and Kali, correspond to the four divisions of the Golden Egg; Sattya to Buddhi, Treta to Mind, Dvapara to Purushic Ether, and Kali to Prakrtic Ether. This means that all life becomes manifest in the Kali Age (Prakrtic Ether).
- A great deal of what occurs in sacred Hindu works in connection with the Four Ages of Time can be explained on the basis of their relation to the four divisions of the Golden Egg. In the light of this we can explain the idea of the ten incarnations of Vishnu, and the systems of thought associated with them.