What is the Earth? In treating this seemingly innocuous but definitely intriguing question, I should explain the background to it so that the dimensions the answer will attempt to explore will be appreciated.
His Royal Highness, Alhaji Aliru H. Momoh, Ikelebe 111, Otaru of Auchi, Edo State, Nigeria, endorsed the proposal that a colloquium should be part of the celebration of Auchi Day. The first Auchi Day was celebrated in December, 1997. Papers presented were published in First Auchi Day, 1997, and included The Kingdom of Auchi (1860-1997) by Dr. Hakeem Harunah; Islamisation of Auchi by Prof. Z. I. Oseni; and Auchi by the Year 2010 by Mr. Aret Adams.
When I telephoned the Otaru to ask for an update on plans for Auchi Day ’98, I discovered that for reasons that were understandable, the planning was not as elaborate as we expected it would be. This was because the programme of return to civil rule authored by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) provided for elections to local councils on December 5, 1998. It was decided that because of expectations of the period, it would be better to either postpone the celebration or have it without too much fanfare. The celebration without fanfare won the day.
But what of the intellectual aspect of the celebrations the Colloquium? His Royal Highness said there was something we could fall back on. There had been the need for illuminating an aspect of the Holy Qur’an after every Friday Jumat Service. The topic being discussed at the time was the Story of Creation. It had been said that God created the Heavens and the Earth. There seemed to be more elaboration of what the Heavens are than what the Earth is or how many Earths there are. There are Seven Heavens, so says the Qur’an (Sura 67 v 3). Are there also Seven Earths? And what constitutes the Earth or the Earths? An Islamic Scholar would have to give a lecture during Auchi Day, 1998.
The suggestion was then made to His Royal Highness that to meet the demands of a Colloquium, the subject matter had better be treated from different religious perspectives, as follows:
(a) What is the Earth in the Creation Story, according to Christianity?
(b) What is the Earth in the Creation Story, according to Islam?
(c) What is the Earth in the Creation Story, according to Traditional Religion?
(d) What is the Earth, in the Creation Story according to the Grail Movement?
Without prejudice to what would be presented by different contributors, I thought that as one who would inevitably be called upon to moderate the discussions, as happened during Auchi Day 97 Colloquium, I should advert to the subject matter in a general way. I therefore tried in this presentation to reflect the different perspectives in the Creation Story.
I looked at our Earth as is shown to us today by science, then reproduced the story of Creation from the perspective of my community at Auchi in Edo State, from what the Bible and the Qur’an say, and the explanation given in The Grail Message, making it clear that the Grail Movement is not a religion like Christianity and Islam; nor has the Movement any explanation to give on any topic outside the mediation in The Grail Message. I then drew conclusions from the picture that had become clear and ended the presentation by saying that a better understanding of the Creation Story will lead unfailingly to the true worship of the Creator of Heaven and Earth.
Because the celebrations were packaged into one day instead of one week, there was little time for me to present this material. This publication is, therefore, the first attempt to make it public.
Prince Tony Momoh
THE EARTH WE SEE
Collins Gem Encyclopedia illuminatingly presents the Earth which today we recognize as comprising continents — Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Australia, Europe and Antarctica.
Once upon a time, some 200 million years ago, the Earth was one solid land mass. It gradually broke up, and some 65 million years ago, began to take the shape of the continents as we know them today.
It is obvious, therefore, that the Earth was not the product of a fiat – Let there be the Earth — and it came to be what we see today.
Before 200 million years ago when the Earth was a solid land mass, says our source under reference, it was just particles of dust, swirling gases and tiny forming planets. These elements were tightly squeezed together, thus creating intense heat and pressure inside the swirling mass. This was about 4,600 million years ago.
Scientists tell us that the pull of gravity drew very gradually the heavier elements in the mass towards the centre. Lighter elements and compounds gathered near the surface. These included gases which were poisonous and were later replaced by air. Much later, the outer layer cooled and hardened, but the centre remained liquid.
Thus, looking at the Earth from the core, the centre, we have the metal core and the meteorite-like matter around it; the mantle and the crust which were a result of the melting of the outer rocks; and the chemicals from the Earth’s interior. These chemicals rose to form the oceans and the early atmosphere. And this was before 200 million years ago when the one large mass was beginning to break up until, as already indicated, we have the Earth as we know it today.
Today, the structure of the Earth, its measurements, even distances from the outermost (crust) to the innermost (core) are known. Four layers are identified as follows:
(a) The crust, which is the outermost layer, is made up of rock and carries the land and the oceans.
(b) The mantle lies under the crust. It consists of liquid rock.
(c) The outer core is liquid iron; and
(d) The inner core is solid iron.
The Earth’s mass is in tonnage that we cannot imagine. It is 5676 million million million tonnes. The surface area is 510,066 million sq.km (196,935 million sq. miles). Its polar circumference is 40,008 km (24,859.7 miles), and its equatorial circumference is 40,075 km (24,901.5 miles).
Scientists even have told us what the Earth is composed of. These details can be found on Page 19 of Collins Gem Encyclopedia. We are told that the Earth is made up of elements and minerals; that there are 93 naturally occurring elements; that nine of these elements make up 99 percent of the mass of the Earth’s crust; that two nonmetals – oxygen and silicon – make up three-quarters of the mass; and that the rest consist of seven metals: aluminium, iron, calcium, sodium, potassium, magnesium and titanium. We are also told that inside the crust, most elements are present as minerals of which there are 2,000 types.
The Earth as we know it today has undergone changes occasioned by physical forces which are both external and internal. The external forces manifest as erosion of rock layers, exposing rock below (denudation), and the accumulation of sediments, especially mud and sand carried by rivers (deposition). The internal forces manifest in earth movements which may be sideways, causing folding or fractures to the surface of the Earth; or volcanic eruptions whose external features are produced by lava flow and geysers.
We are familiar today with the world’s highest mountains ranging from the Everest in the Himalayas in Asia, through the Kilimanjaro in Africa, to Elbrus in Europe and Kosciusko in Australia. Major mountain ranges also include the Adamawa Highlands in Central West Africa, the Alps in Central Europe, Caucasus in South-West Russia, the Drakensberg in South Africa, the Rockies of West North America, and Taurus of Asia Minor.
We are also familiar with the rivers of the world, from the Nile in Egypt, the Amazon in South America, to the Mississippi-Missouri-Red Rock in North America, the Yangtze of Asia and the Zaire of Africa. The oceans and the seas range from the Pacific, the Atlantic and the Indian Oceans to the South China, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and Bering Seas. The Earth has many more features we are familiar with – islands, deserts, forests etc.
So much is known about the Earth today that only the ignorant would accept that the Creation Story refers to this Earth where days as we know them are in contemplation. Or should the Days be interpreted in eras and periods and epochs? Eras are measured in millions of years and are identified as Precambrian (before 590 million years ago); Paleozoic (590-248 million years ago); Mesozoic (248-65 million years ago); and Cenozoic (65 million years ago, to now). The Eras are divided into periods and the periods into epochs. These details can be found on page 17 of the encyclopedia under reference.
The question arises then whether the Creation Story refers to our Earth or other celestial globes. This question should advise our extending the picture or conception of the earth much further, to the Solar System and the Universe.
The Universe started to form long, long before the Earth, millions of years ago. The age is put at between 3,000 and 20,000 million years. That distant time ago, it started to form, and expanded. It has continued to expand and may do so for eternity, say scientists; or it may eventually collapse inwards to its original solid state.
The Solar system is centred by the Sun which we say rises in the East and sets in the West. Once upon a time, the Earth was thought to have stood still, and it was the Sun that moved across the sky. Now we know that the Earth moves on its axis the same time it does the rotational dance around the Sun. Just as statistics has been built up on the Sun, so have we facts and figures on the Earth, and other planets that take heat and warmth from the Sun.
We know as at today that the Earth is roughly 93 million miles from the Sun, a distance very small indeed in comparison to the distance separating the Sun from the furtherest planet from it in the Solar System. This planet, Pluto, is 40 times the distance from the Earth to the Sun.
We also know that the Sun’s light (at 186,000 miles a second) takes about 11 minutes to reach the Earth, and six hours to reach Pluto.
But the Sun itself is a small insignificant star in the sea of stars in our Milky Way Galaxy in which there is an estimated hundred billion. While light crosses our Solar System in units of an hour, it would require some 50,000 years to go from one extreme to the other of the most compact group of stars that make up our galaxy.
Our galaxy again, huge as it seems, is only one small part of the heavens. Billions of galaxies constitute a universe.
Einstein has even surmised that other universes exist independently of our own. (See page 121 of The Next 10,000 Years by Andrian Berry). So vast and immense are the distances that separate the stars and galaxies that many would like to use the word infinite to describe them. But that cannot hold because a work by its very nature has borders that are and can be located in time and space. We can say therefore that Creation, being a work of the Creator, must have boundaries and can, therefore, NOT be infinite.
But what is Creation and what do we know about it? How is it sustained? Will it come to an end? How? When? And after that, what next?
The questions agitate the minds of thinking men and women and have done so through the ages. Many are the Creation Stories available to man on Earth today. There is not one community that does not have The Story of how the World began. Long before the advent of Christianity and Islam, each community had a story to tell about how the world came into being.
In relating the Creation Stories as seen from different belief systems, we can only hope that an opportunity has been offered for at least one step forward on the path of the eternal search for answers to the many mysteries we have associated with the greatest of all works, the Creation of Heaven and Earth.
THE CREATION STORY IN UCHILAND
The people of Auchi in Edo State of Nigeria relate the Creation Story in folk lore. Once upon a time, there was an argument between Alolokphi the Chameleon and Ughogho the Bird. The argument had to do with age, with the oldest being on Earth. The chameleon said he was older than the bird and tried to prove it by saying that when he was born, the Earth was so soft and fragile that he had to step on it so softly as not to sink into its bowels. The bird said when he was born, there was no land. He had to fly, and continue flying without perching because there was nowhere to perch. When his parents died, there was nowhere else to bury them than the crown of his head.
From the story, it is obvious that the creating was in phases and that it involved a slow process of development. Neither the chameleon nor the bird was old enough to have experienced what preceded water or where the elements that formed water and, later, land came from.
Auchi people also recognized that Creation was the work of the Creator. His name is Oghena who created Oto (literally the ground) and Okwili(literally the sky). Both, however, refer to Earth and Heaven respectively. I am not aware if their recognitions were deep enough to have let them into the perception of Seven Earths (oto iselua – Earth in seven places), and Seven Heavens (okwili iselua – Heaven in seven places).
There is something quite unique in oto iselua and okwili iselua. Oto and okwili are both singular, uncountable nouns. The presence of iselua (seven) therefore means that the Earth in seven places and the Heaven in seven places are automatic replications of the same Earth and the same Heaven. They are like photocopies. More correctly, they are multiple reflections, like an object between two mirrors.
But it would seem that the perception of oto and okwili is physical. We operate from here on Earth and, therefore, the Earth must be the port of embarkation. The tendency would then be that the Earth (oto) will start here on the ground of our Earth and move downwards in replicating itself until the seventh reflected Earth is reached. The same goes for Heaven (okwili). The port of embarkation is the sky above our heads. It is replicated to the seventh level and that is the limit of Creation. In other words, Creation, from the perspective under reference, is that work of the Creator which can be identified from the Seventh Heaven above, down through to the First Heaven nearest to the Earth, then to the First Earth where we are, through the Second to the Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Earth down below. This means that the Seventh Heaven is in the highest, and the Seventh Earth the deepest.
There is no time slot in the Creation Story of the people of Auchi, nor is there any reference to size of the Creation. It is however known to them that Oghena, the Creator, lives in the Seventh Heaven, and the Devil is to be found down, down, below in the Seventh Earth.
It is only to be expected that beings between the highest and the deepest would be arranged to fit into where the Creator ordained for them. Some of these beings are visible, others are not. Among those not visible but whose continued existence the people are aware of are the departed ones. Alimhi is where they are supposed to go to when they leave the Earth but they will only go to the place of bliss (obha ofuegbe) after the Creator has judged them. But these ancestors come and go many times before the judgment.
From what science has revealed to us today on the Earth, the solar system, galaxies and universes, it is obvious that the conception of Earth and Heaven in Auchi tradition cannot be sustained unless it is located in areas beyond physical perception. In other words, the replications of this Earth and this Heaven must be in the Beyond. We should give a picture of the beyond much later in this presentation.
THE CREATION STORY OF THE BIBLE
The very beginning of the Bible tells the Story of Creation:
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters.” (Gen 1,1-2)
We are not informed about the abode of God before the Creation, but it is obvious that before God created the Heavens and the Earth, that is, before the beginning, God Himself had always had His abode from which the works of Creation emanated.
The Bible tells us the sequence of the Creations which lasted six days. On the seventh day, God was said to have rested.
But how did Creation come into being? God decreed it by saying. “Let there be light” (Gen. 1, verse 3). We can now follow the sequence from day to day as told in Genesis.
Day One (chapter 1 verses 3-5):
God decreed that light should emerge on Earth which had no form and was dark. He separated the light from the darkness and gave them names. He called the light Day and the darkness Night.
Day Two (verses 6 – 8):
Water was everywhere at the beginning of Creation. God decreed separation of the waters by making the firmament or the sky. The firmament was given a name: Heaven. Morning and Evening also came into being. In two days, therefore, we had day and night, the separation of Heaven from Earth, and emergence of evening and morning.
Day Three (verses 9-13):
The waters on which the Spirit of God moved at the beginning of Creation had on the second day been separated by a firmament called Heaven. On this third day, God decreed that the waters under the Heavens should be gathered together into one place and that dry land should appear. The dry land was given the name Earth and the waters gathered together He called Seas. Also on this third day, God decreed that vegetation, plants yielding seed and fruit, trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, should appear on Earth. We must note that plants and seeds that would reproduce them in future had come into being on the third day.
Day Four (verses 14-19):
Up to now, there were no stars in the sky. It was this fourth day that God decreed that light should appear in the firmaments of the Heavens to separate the day from the night. It means that before the fourth day, although there was day and night, and evening and morning, there had been no light in the firmament to separate them. This came about on the fourth day. Natural phenomena also came to life on the fourth day because of the presence of the stars. These included the seasons, the days and the years. The light in the Heavens also would henceforth supply illumination to the Earth. The intensity of illumination was decreed too. The light would be more intense during the day and would be stepped down at night.
Day Five (verses 20-23):
Animal life was first decreed into being on this fifth day – the fishes of the sea and the birds of the air. God decreed that they reproduce themselves to populate the Earth. Animals and men were a day younger.
Day Six (verses 24-31):
On this day, animals on land came into being – cattle, creeping things and beasts of the Earth. With the appearance of beasts and other Earth habitants, it was time for man to appear. And he did, in the image of God!
Day Seven (chapter 2 verses 1-3):
We are told that on the seventh day, God took a rest from the work of creating the Heavens and the Earth. He blessed the day and declared it holy because it was the day He ceased the work of Creation.
Chapter 2 of the Bible gives more details of the Creation Story and explains how man who was created on the sixth day did emerge. His name is given as Adam. Much later, he had a partner, Eve. This means that man was created first, then woman. Since this emergence of man and woman took place on the sixth day, it is obvious that these events cannot be rightly conceived in our Earth days but in equivalents of millions of years.
The story would be different, however, if the events being described in the Bible refer to a different world unknown to us. If that is so, how did the Earth appear and when? And how did we come here and when?
We should come back to these questions later but let us now summarize the Story of Creation from the perspective of Islam.
THE CREATION STORY IN THE QUR’AN
There is no unified description of Creation in the Qur’an , unlike the Bible which gives a picture. There are, however, passages scattered all over the Qur’an dealing with aspects of Creation. A close look at the references shows a series of events which must be pieced together to give a clearer picture.
There are similarities, however, in the Creation Stories of the Bible and the Qur’an. Like in the Bible, Creation took six days to complete. Says the Qur’an in Sura 7, Verse 54. “Your Lord is God who created the heavens and the earth in six days.”
But those who understand the language of the Qur’an (Arabic) say that days in the Creation Story does not mean our own day, like the seven days of the week. It means long lengths of time, as can be inferred from Sura 32 verse 51 which speaks of yaum – “a period of time whereof the measure is a thousand years of your reckoning”.
Even this period of time is not restricted to a thousand years but more, as shown in Sura 70 verse 4, which speaks of “a period of time (yaum) whereof the measure is 50,000 years.”
One of the longest accounts of the Creation Story in the Qur’an is to be found in Sura 41 verses 9 – 12 in which God is speaking to the Prophet:
“Say: Do you disbelieve Him who created the earth in two periods? Do you ascribe equals to Him! He is the Lord of the Worlds. He set in the (earth) mountains standing firm. He blessed it. He measured therein its sustenance in four periods, in due proportion in accordance with the needs of those who ask for (sustenance or information?). Moreover (tumma) He turned to heaven when it was smoke and said to it and to the earth: come willingly or unwillingly! They said: we come in willing obedience. Then He ordained them seven heavens in two periods, and He assigned to each heaven its mandate by revelation. And we adorned the lower heaven with luminaries and provided it a guard. Such is the decree of the All Mighty, the Full of Knowledge.”
The reference in the Qur’an to the creation of the Heavens and the Earth (Sura 7 verse 54) and the creation of the Earth and the Heavens (Sura 41 verses 9-12) shows that the Qur’an does not seem to be laying down a sequence for the creation of the Heavens and the Earth.
We are informed that in only a few places is the creation of the Earth mentioned before that of the Heavens e.g. “Him who created the earth and the heavens.” (Sura 2 verse 29; and Sura 20, verse 4).
A definite sequence is however to be found in Sura 79 verses 27-33:
“Are you the harder to create or is it the heaven that (God) built? He raised its canopy and fashioned it with harmony. He made dark the night and He brought out the forenoon. And after that (ba‘da dalika) He spread it out. Therefrom He drew out its water and its pasture. And the mountains He has fixed firmly. Goods for you and your cattle.”
Many commentators on the Creation Story in the Qur’an do not agree on which comes first — the Heavens or the Earth. What is not in doubt is that once upon a time, the Heavens and the Earth were one before they were separated – Sura 21 verse 30:
“Do not the unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were joined together, then we clove them asunder and got every living thing out of the water. Will they not then believe?”
But how many Heavens are there? The Qur’an refers to seven: See Sura 2, verse 29: “(God) is the One who created for you all that is on the earth. Moreover He turned to the heaven, and fashioned seven heavens with harmony. He is Full of Knowledge of all things.”
We are told in Sura 67, verse 3 that the seven heavens were created “one above another.”
It would seem that the Heavens are located above in the sky, especially where there is reference to the moon as a light and the sun as a lamp. (Sura 71, verses 15 and 16).
Although there is reference to Seven Heavens, there is hardly any reference to many Earths. Sura 65 verse 12 says: “God is the one who created seven heavens and of the earth (and) a similar number…”
Commentators do not seem to know the significance of the number 7 and are therefore satisfied that it is synonymous with several.
For fullness of the problems that the Creation Story poses, there is no information on the creation outside the Heavens and outside the Earth. Until there is recourse to recent material on the subject, it is difficult to understand statements like: “To Him/God belongs what is in the heavens, on earth between them and beneath the soil.” Sura 20, verse 6.
Dr. Maurice Bucaille summarises the Creation Story in the Qur’an (See page 149 of The Bible, The Qur’an and Science) as follows:
(a) Existence of six periods for the creation in general.
(b) Interlocking of stages in the creation of the heavens and the earth.
(c) Creation of the universe out of an initially unique mass forming a block that subsequently split up.
(d) Plurality of the heavens and of the earths.
(e) Existence of an intermediary creation between the heavens and the earth.
The Deputy Chief Imam of Auchi who is also the spiritual head of Out-Ibo, my age group at Auchi, told me that the Prophet addressed the matter of the Seven Heavens and the Seven Earths. He asked his close associates if they knew the distance between the First Heaven and the Second Heaven. They humbly replied that only the Prophet and Allah would know. He said the distance between the First Heaven and the Second Heaven is a journey of 500 years. It was the same distance between the Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth and Seventh Heavens – 500 years. And the Earth? The distance between the First Earth and the Second Earth is a journey of 500 years. The same distance applied to the Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Earths – a journey of 500 years.
THE CREATION STORY IN THE GRAIL MESSAGE
The work, In the Light of Truth The Grail Message by Abd-ru-shin, is new on the face of the Earth. It is no more and no less than a source of knowledge for the human spirit, in spite of his beliefs and his religious leanings. It explains God and His Work. And because Creation is God’s Work, it explains Creation with such clarity that no doubt whatsoever is left in the minds of those who seriously seek. The Grail Message is not the same as the Grail Movement which the planners of the Colloquium listed to present a perspective to the Creation Story. The Grail Movement is an organization of people who, having examined The Grail Message, decided individually that the path hewn for mankind therein should focus their personal lives. There is, therefore, no explanation the Grail Movement can give on the Creation Story because the Movement is not a religion that is subject to rules, regulations, beliefs and dogma. The Grail Message is a book sold in open bookshops, containing a total of 168 lectures which explain God and His Creation; and not in any one of the lectures is any mention made of any Movement. So all that the members of the Movement strive to do is to let mankind share the joy they have discovered in the expansion of their consciousness of God as the author of Creation and all that is it, and the laws that maintain and sustain it.
Having explained the difference between The Grail Message and the Grail Movement, we should now look at a few things that should focus our discussion of the subject-matter of the Creation of the Heavens and the Earth as explained, illuminated and elucidated in The Grail Message.
- The stories told of Creation by the Bible and the Qur’an do not refer to our planet Earth. Our planet Earth is only one of the celestial bodies that came into being in the course of the development of Creation.
- The Heavens under reference in the Bible and the Qur’an are not the skies we see above us. For the sun and the stars are the last material, and indeed, physical manifestations of the creation process.
- The development of this part of Creation has continued over millennia and will continue for eternity in a process that will be explained in this presentation.
- The reference in the Qur’an to Seven Heavens and that same number of Earths is not mere plurality as some commentators on the Qur’an have tried to explain. God does not guess. The number is SEVEN, and there are indeed Seven Heavens and Seven Earths, if we should at this stage restrict ourselves to the terms we know.
- Creation was not undertaken for fun, for the purpose of entertaining God. It was made to provide an opportunity for man to evolve at that level or distance from the direct radiations of God, where he can manifest life.
- The whole of Creation is populated, thickly populated by beings, not only of God, but many which man himself threw up through the activity of his thoughts, his words and his deeds, for every activity in Creation has a form that identifies it.
- Man has his home in Creation but the Earth is not that home. The Earth is a school which he must attend. At the end of schooling which takes millions of years of coming and going, he will have to return to where he came from.
We are informed in the Qur’an that God created the Heavens and the Earth and all that is between. We can now explain that the creating was not done on Earth or in Heaven. It was done outside the heavens, infact, above the heavens with the words, “Let there be Light.” That pronouncement extended the Grail Castle, from out of the Divine. It is explained in The Grail Message that the direct radiations of God terminate in the Grail Castle. When work on Creation had to start, an annex was added to the Castle for a Light Anchor from the Godhead to establish an outpost from where radiations would flow into the void. This Light Anchor is the Third Arm of the Trinity. He is described as the Will of God, God at Work, the Holy Spirit, the Beginning and the End who established the Law that you must reap what you sow.
The Creation that came into being through and from the Holy Spirit right there at the Castle of the Grail, the Summit of Creation inaccessible to the purest of creatures, has been sustained from eternity, and has a structure from the highest to the lowest.
Structure of Creation
There are two fundamental divisions in Creation: Spiritual and Material. We can say right away then that the Spiritual refers to the Heavens in the Creation Story and the Material to the Earth or Earths. First was the Spiritual, then the Material.
Let us look at a lecture of The Grail Message which surveys Creation and paraphrases it so that a picture may emerge that illuminates the Creation Stories in the Bible, the Qur’an and even among animists.
There are three gradations as follows:
- The Primordial Spiritual Part;
- The Spiritual Part; and
- The Material Part.
We are informed of a second way of describing the same structure, as follows:
- Primordial Creation;
- Creation; and
- Subsequent Creation.
The three big divisions are further split up in the lecture but for our purpose, it is enough to know that Primordial Beings are in Primordial Creation, Created Beings in Creation; and Developed Beings in Subsequent Creation. Human Beings on Earth are developing, not yet developed beings.
The Primordial Spiritual part has two basic sections. The Uppermost and Highest section harbours the Primordial Beings. They came into existence as fully matured from the radiations of the Holy Spirit. They did not therefore need any development. They occupy the first THREE highest levels or planes. The other low levels or planes had to grow to maturity.
It must be added here that the seven basic steps or planes are divided into many sub-divisions. But there is no need separating one sub-division from the other or separating one level or plane from the other. It is all an unbroken flow of radiations which coalesce, at appropriate distances and form, through precipitation, the planes under reference.
After the Primordial Spiritual Part or Primordial Creation, there follows the Spiritual Part which is the Paradise of men. It is also in seven huge planes but it is a different species from the Primordial Spiritual Part. The first THREE steps of the Spiritual also came into existence fully matured. These planes harbour Created Beings as distinct from the Primordial Beings in the Primordial Spiritual. The next four planes matured through development.
Let us place ourselves, in imagination, at the last plane, from Above, the seventh plane of the Spiritual. That is where man on earth came from. Looking down from there, a huge rotating globe can be seen down down in the distances. In that rotating globe is where human spirits from the Spiritual live and attend the School of Life. It is the huge field in which they are sown like seeds to grow and mature. That is the World of Matter or the Material World. That is the Earth in the Creation Story. But it has no life of its own. It needs help to animate it, to penetrate it, to move it and thereby to bring heat and form it.
This Material Part, this Earth, has two sections, like the Primordial Spiritual Part. Both sections are enveloped by a huge belt that provides the heat and the warming. It is here that Matter comes from, for it is this huge belt, the Animistic ring, that first receives the spirit germs which have flowed from Paradise and are on their way to the World of Matter, to the Earth, to attend the School of Life.
The first part of Material Creation or Subsequent Creation that comes to consciousness is the Ethereal, man’s temporary home while he sojourns in this part of Creation. That is what we call the Beyond, which just means that which is beyond the perceptive ability of the human intellect.
After the Ethereal, the last part is Gross Matter which, because of its greater density, must go through the process of development with the help of the elementals. It is the elementals that build rocks, trees, wind, water, mountains, rivers etc.
The two basic sections of Material Creation also have many sub-divisions. We are informed that each section of the species of Creation splits into many planes, of which each individual plane is again so multiform that it appears like a huge world in itself.
We are informed that from the very beginning, God’s Creation has been anchored on the Laws of God, which express His Will. The Laws are immutable, unalterable. Whether you are aware of them or not, whether your knowledge of them is right or wrong, they are there and they operate without a break, without change.
The Laws brought Creation into being and sustain it. The Spiritual Part of Creation (the Seven Primordial Planes and the Seven Spiritual Planes) are not subject to the law of birth, growth, ageing and death which the Material World (The Seven Earths) is subject to. All the Material worlds were born, they grew; they aged and have died, or will die.
Each celestial globe, like our Earth, our solar system, our universe, have their own life spans, like the life span of everyman. At a time appointed by God, the Creator, they will be judged and they will die. But the death or disintegration of the celestial globes gives an opportunity for a fresh beginning, a fresh birth. So, what is eternal, infinite, in the World of Matter, or in the Seven Earths, is that all that is in there is subject to the law of birth, growth, ageing, death and again birth.
If God created the Heavens and the Earth and all that is between, what is between the highest Heaven and the deepest Earth? It is not difficult to know. All you do is look at our Earth. There are the elements – land, water, air and fire. There are the mineral, the plant and the animal life. There is man and there are beings that work in the Will of God.
All these are present in one form or the other in Creation. They are lighter and more beautiful the higher you move up in the Beyond; and they are darker the deeper you descend. In the highest are arch-angels and angels; and down here on Earth are elemental beings that work the Earth, move the air, produce rain and fire, and build the mountains and plants. There are beings that weave the bodies of men, right from the womb on to the time of birth; and through all the stages of our lives until we leave the Earth.
But when we leave the Earth, we do not cease to exist. It is our bodies that die, not ourselves because we are the Breath of Life of the Creator anchored in our bodies that were fashioned from the Dust of the Earth (Gen 2 verse 7). We, the Breath of Life, came from Paradise, the Spiritual World, and to Paradise, the Spiritual, we shall return.
When we leave this Earth at the physical death of the body, the Dust of the Earth, we do not yet go to Paradise. We are still on Earth; you can say, the next Earth in the Beyond. There we are aware that life goes on after earthly death. We meet those of our relatives who have departed and memories of our relationships flood back to us. After some time, we move to the next place but this next place, the Ethereal World, does not permit the living together of the good, the bad and the ugly as we have here on this Earth. The Law of “Birds of a feather flock together” takes effect there. The good congregate in cities of ineffable beauty. The bad and the ugly congregate in places that are unimaginably repulsive.
But what determines where we go is what we did while on Earth with our spoken words and our thoughts. For everything we do is a sowing of seeds, the fruits of which we must reap. Our practical deeds are reaped here on Earth. The deeds of our mouth, our words, bear fruit for us to reap in the Beyond, in a place closest to the Earth. This is what many know as the Astral World. Let us call it the Second Earth, if we regard our own Earth as the first.
But from what we have seen mediated in The Grail Message, our Earth can only be the last manifestation in the Creation Story. It can only be the seventh on the journey down from Above. And what is on this Earth is a reflection of what is Above.
Let us try to identify the Seven Earths on the journey from Paradise to the Gross Material Earth, and the Seven physically manifested Earths in this Gross Material World.
THE SEVEN EARTHS OF MATERIAL CREATION.
This explanation I am now proffering on the Seven Earths of Material Creation is not from the Grail Message, but conclusions I drew from examining the Message.
The Grail Message identifies the following planes in the Material World:
1) The Animistic Sphere – this is the first port of call when human spirits leave Paradise as spirit germs to be sown into the World of Matter in which they will grow to maturity and then return to Paradise. This is also the home of animals, just as Paradise is the home of man. This sphere is the abode of the lords that control the elements – fire, wind, water etc. They are all servants of the Creator and are not to be served. It is wrong, therefore, to serve their agents like Mammy Water or Orle or Sango or Olokun. Nor is it advisable to make sacrifices to them.
2) The Ethereal Sphere is divided into three – Finest Ethereal, Finer Ethereal and Coarsest Ethereal. In our attempt to identify the Earths, we have the Second, Third and Fourth Earths respectively. This Ethereal, especially the coarsest which is the Fourth Earth, is our temporary home in the World of Matter. It is where we reside before we come back to attend the School of Life on Earth.
In the Coarsest Ethereal, the Fourth Earth, we plan where next we need to experience life. There are human beings who are more mature than we are that plan journeys to the Earth, the Seventh Earth. What we need next in the maturing process determines where next on Earth we will go to. It determines which body we will need, which race, which tribe, which family. These are planned to the last detail.
The Finer Ethereal or Third Earth is so distant from this Earth that the beings there have lost their contact with this Earth where we are. It is the first way back to our home in Paradise. To get there, we would have matured enough for the body we used in Coarsest Ethereal, the Fourth Earth to have been burnt off.
It should be explained that to leave the Earth, the body we use must be dropped. To leave any other plane, therefore, on the way to our home in Paradise, we must drop each body we used in the low regions we experienced in. What this means is that on our way to the Earth, we must put on the cloak of every plane we pass through. When, therefore, we leave the Animistic, the First Earth, coming from Above, we put on the animistic cloak. We then enter Finest Ethereal World and put on that cloak; and so on until we arrive on Earth when we wear the physical body.
The Finest Ethereal or Second Earth, is the last port of call before we get to Paradise. It is also the plane in which human spirit germs coming to the Earth plane are tended for millions of years while the celestial globes in which they will attend the School of Life are being fashioned. It is also in this plane that the human form is assumed. But the spirit core does not assume the human form until it has matured in the School of Life on Earth, through coming and going and coming and going. This is reincarnation.
Thus, from the above, we identify the following four Earths — Animistic Earth, Finest Ethereal Earth, Finer Ethereal Earth and Coarsest Ethereal Earth.
- The Gross Material Sphere. This is also divided into three (from above) – Finest Gross Matter, Medium Gross Matter and Coarsest Gross Matter.
The Earth we are on is Coarsest Gross Matter, the Seventh Earth. We already know that we here on Earth are divided into races, tribes and families. We also have sizes – fat and slim, tall and short. We are born, we grow, we age and we die. But what is subject to this birth, growth, ageing and dying is the body which is made of coarsest gross matter of this Earth, this Seventh Earth.
Everything we do on this Earth is meant to help us grow spiritually so that we can pass the examinations of the School of Life and go back to our home in Paradise.
The next Earth closest to us is Medium Gross Matter. By our analysis, this is the Sixth Earth. This is the plane called the Astral World which many on Earth today are aware of.
This plane is a very important plane and we should summarise facts about it.
- It is the next solid plane after the Earth on which we live. Looking at matter from solid to liquid to gaseous, then beyond the gaseous, the next solid state we reach is Medium Gross Matter, the Astral Plane.
- Everything done on Earth registers in the Astral Plane.
- Everything coming to the Earth, including children, comes through the Astral Plane.
- Every form that manifests on Earth, including all so-called inventions, has its prototype in the Astral Plane.
- It is the Astral Plane we go to when we say we are asleep. Only the body sleeps. The soul never sleeps and is always active. At night, while the body is at rest to restore its batteries, the soul wings off to the Astral Plane.
- Beings that meet in the Astral Plane are those from the Earth; those that live there or are held up there; and those that come from higher planes to work. The plane is thus a meeting place and could serve for the solution of problems. That is why you can have problems solved if you present them prayerfully for solution before you go to bed. Beings will be handy to give you answers when your body is at rest.
- In the Astral Plane and beyond there, only birds of a feather flock together. Bad people can only reach bad beings there and vice versa. It is therefore this plane that witches go to at night and from which they send evil radiations to those who are open to them. It is obvious, therefore, that if you strive for purity of thought and let no evil emanate from you in your thoughts, your words and your deeds, you have armed yourself against evil in any form, including the power of witches.
- The Astral Plane has its own dimension of time and space. While no one can exceed the speed of light in our dimension (186,000 miles per second), the assessment of speed there is infinitely faster. You can traverse billions of miles in a second and reach out to the past and the future. At this level, our own hundred years is like a few seconds there.
- Before a “child” is born on Earth, he would have come from the Ethereal Sphere to Gross Matter. He will move from Fine Gross Matter, wear the cloak of that plane, and then enter Medium Gross Matter, the Astral Plane, and put on the cloak of that plane. When a woman is pregnant, the soul that will incarnate on Earth is gradually drawn into the womb as it grows. At about mid pregnancy, the soul enters the womb and the prospective mother experiences the first kicks of the baby. Life has then begun in the young body and a stranger has come into the womb of the woman. When it is born, we begin to count the sojourn on Earth in days, weeks, months and years. But the sojourner, the soul in the body, would have been hundreds of Earth years older than the woman through whom it came to experience this particular Earth life.
- While the seeds we sow on Earth are reaped on Earth, the seeds we sow in the Astral will be reaped there. The mode of sowing seeds there, from here, is through the spoken word. So, what you say is registered for you in medium gross matter. Unless it grew into physical action to be reaped here, you would have to reap all the fruits of your spoken words in the Astral.
- When a person leaves the flesh, the first place he goes to is Medium Gross Matter, the Astral. After about 40 days, the cloak of this plane decays and drops off the body of the person who had won it on its way to the Earth. He must then move on, to start experiencing the results of his actions in word and thought while on Earth.
There are many things man of today knows about the Astral World because it is nearest to our Earth. But it is not Paradise, in spite of the beauty of the sphere. It is still the World of Matter, the Sixth Earth in the flow from Above.
The Fifth Earth, which is Finest Gross Matter, is the World of Thought Forms. That is where everything we think is anchored, for our reaping in due time. Thoughts are, therefore, not free.
We should now list the different spheres of Creation before we identify the Seven Earths on our own Earth Plane.
- Primordial Spiritual – which came into being with the fiat, “Let there be Light.” There are Three original planes and Four developed planes. Total – Seven.
- Spiritual Creation whose strongest parts became conscious automatically, with the other parts developing later. Total – Seven.
- The World of Matter comprising:
- The Animistic Plane that provides warmth and forms
- Finest Ethereal
- Finer Ethereal
- Coarsest Ethereal
- Finest Gross Matter
- Medium Gross Matter
- Coarsest Gross Matter.
The Seven Earths of Coarsest Gross Matter
We should now try to identify the Seven Earths of Coarsest Gross Matter. These Seven Earths are the universes which are comprised of physically visible solar systems with planets. As we are aware, this is the field of operation of science.
We know that there are billions of solar systems in our Milky Way Galaxy and billions of galaxies in our universe. We are aware today that there is more than one universe. For, mediation to man on Earth, from Above, shows that there are Seven Universes. Each universe is comprised by billions of celestial globes and these are developments that naturally flowed from the Spiritual.
We are informed that it is these Universes that were being referred to as the Seven Churches or Communities in Asia. You can see, therefore, that Asia refers to the World of Coarsest Gross Matter.
Picture to yourself seven huge ships. Each ship represents a universe. The ships are all at Sea, on the same relative flat surface. Forget that you see contents of these ships, in form of solar systems, by looking at the sky. When the Americans were on the Moon, did they not have to look up at the sky to see our Earth in the distance!
The ships are the universes with their billions of solar systems. Above the Sea, like the clouds above us, is Medium Gross Matter, with the same Sea which is vaster and lighter, and the same ships which are also bigger and lighter. The sky above is visible to you only when you close your eyes and look INWARDS. From Sea level, moving upwards (and inwards within us), we access increasing degrees of vastness and lightness beyond description; and we encounter Finest Gross Matter, then Coarsest Ethereal, Finer Ethereal, Finest Ethereal, and the Animistic Plane which envelopes the World of Matter and is the boundary between the Spiritual and Material Worlds. Beyond that boundary, still moving upwards, is Spiritual Creation (seven planes), and the Primordial Spiritual (seven planes).
Information available today is that Revelation in the Bible was downloaded from a plane in the Primordial Spiritual, the Third Heaven from where John the Baptist was sent to announce to the Earth here, for the first time, tidings of the approaching Kingdom of God. It is the same John the Baptist who was beheaded here on Earth that, back in his home in the Primordial Spiritual, received from on High and dictated Revelation to a medium on Earth. Have you ever meditated on the Goodwill he communicated to mankind in these depths, in the ships at Sea on terra firma, from the Highest of the Heights – the Grace and Peace from the Holy Spirit (He who is and who was and who is to come); the Seven Spirits before His Throne, and from Jesus Christ! (Rev. 1 verses 4-5). The pictures from those Heights cannot but be Spiritual, and could only have reflected what awaited man as a result of how he had lived his life in Coarsest Gross Matter in which he had sojourned for millions of years.
The names of these churches, these communities, these Earths, can be seen in verse 11 of chapter 1 of Revelation which says:
“…I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last and, what thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia: unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea”
Thus the Seven Earths on Coarsest Gross Matter are the Seven Universes listed above. We are informed that our own Universe, our own Earth is called Ephesus.
Ladies and Gentlemen, with the Structure of Creation so vividly presented to enable us recognize the sign-posts back to our home in Paradise, can anyone be in doubt as to how the universes came into being and how the Earth itself evolved? Creation is no fiction because it is not what the brain thought out, or could think out, or even comprehend without help.
The brain is part of the body. It produces the intellect which can only comprehend things that are physical. The death of the body brings to an end all that the brain built up from the day a human being appears on Earth in a physical body until he leaves the Earth by discarding that body. The degrees we acquire belong in the brain, being part of the information fed into the computer that the brain is. But the material fed into us from birth to death, about the physically visible Earth on which we live, is so vast and varied and expansive that, looking at the distances separating our Earth from the other parts of the physical world, we come to the conclusion, in our limited visioning, that the world is infinite.
No, it is not. For, viewed from above, from the Spiritual, this part of Creation, this Material World, right from the Animistic Sphere to these coarsest gross material worlds; this physically manifested world with billions of stars comprising the seven universes, from our Ephesus to distant Laodicea — it is like a hair on the body of an elephant!
It is from the distances Above that helps in multiforms descend to this Earth to help sustain life during the long period of our schooling here.
The Earth we stay on, this little planet, is not alone in the facilities which the Creator has provided as a school for man to mature in. Its time is short, though time be measured and recorded in billions of years. But one day, known only to God Almighty, our small planet Earth, our universe Ephesus, will be judged. And so shall be other Earths, other universes, in fact the Whole of the World of Matter.
That judgment comes at a particular time ordained for that person or that part whose turn it is in the World of Matter. For the celestial globes comprising the Material worlds, it comes at maturity when that globe has aged and must die. Then it must enter the furnace of disintegration, be reduced to the radiation that formed it; and eventually re-emerge for a fresh up-building.
God says that He created man and jinn to worship Him. That the whole of the Material World was permitted to evolve for us to have an opportunity to grow in, so that we can, in due time, return to Paradise which we left in the first place, is the greatest love God can bestow on man. What else can we do but to worship Him by reflecting His Will in every thought we harbour, in every word we utter, in every action of ours.
If we, now on Earth, have forgotten, through laziness and material distractions over millennia, to work in this School of Life so that we can return to our Creator with a good report, it is our fault; and we must bear responsibility for it. But over the ages we have had various helps coming to peoples and communities. These have ranged from wise men in communities to prophets. But the message they brought has always been the same. It was only after their departure that their followers tried to interpret the Word, and so distorted and diluted it. This is the reason for religious dissensions on our Earth today.
Because man on Earth is here to go to school, he lives in the Ethereal World as his temporary home outside the Spiritual. From there, he comes to this Earth, this school. After, he leaves the Earth back to the Ethereal. His sojourn on Earth is reviewed and his needs are assessed and then he comes back, to the race and tribe and family and place where the opportunity exists for his next lessons.
We do not remember because we remember with our intellect which is a product of the brain. The brain dies with the body, and its product, the intellect, perishes with it. When we come again, we are housed in a new body and we start all over again to develop our brain for use on Earth. When therefore people say that nobody has been over there in the Beyond and returned to tell the story, it is proof only of limited perception.
Why do we have this knowledge mediated by Abd-ru-shin in The Grail Message? It is because the signs of the End-Time are here and the judgment for the Earth is on. Everything has been given to man. The only thing he did not have is what is now given – Knowledge of Creation. It shows man where he came from, where he is, what he is here to do, how to do it. It tells him where he goes when he leaves here; what happens there, where he leaves for finally after sojourn on Earth – either to the Garden which is Paradise, or to Hell which is located below the World of Matter.
The Grail Message, In the Light of Truth, is therefore a message from the Grail, the beginning of Creation and the abode of those who did not have to come here at all, and have existed from eternity.
We thank the Most High for the opportunity on Earth today to seek so that by His Grace, we may find.
If the picture given here has not been available, it is because man, through narrowing of vision, misplaced the signposts from his home. We must therefore restore them, walk the paths as mediated to us in the Word, and be abundantly rewarded with Happiness which is the gift for righteousness, and can never be accessed through material acquisitions.
- The Holy Bible
- The Holy Qur’an
- Islam – Beliefs and Teachings, by Ghulam Sarwar; The Muslim Educational Trust, London.
- The Bible, The Qur’an and Science by Dr. Maurice Bucaille, World Islamic Call Society, Tripoli..
- Collins Gem Enclopedia, Harper Collins Publishers, Glasgow 1993.
- In the Light of Truth, The Grail Message by Abd-ru-shin Composite Volume, Alexander Bernhardt, Publishing Co, Vomperberg, Tyrol, Austria.