The Angelic Sphere

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Last revised: 9 September 2008

Angels Are a Higher Rung of Evolution Than Humanity

Are There Angels?

Angels, of course, there are: great Beings of Light who do the Will of the Divine Creator and who carry and transmit Power and Beauty and Light. But they too are in the process of progress, advancement towards their own great Centres. All is order, advancement, progress. And all is unity. Life cells within Life cells, centres within Centres, Groups within Groups, into the very Heart of Divinity. (Frances Banks, TOL, 118.)

Q: Are there angels?

A: Yes, there are. These are people who are more highly evolved than those who go through earth plane incarnations. They are people who have gone through their own stage of evolution on a much higher level and higher realm than the people of the earth plane. (Unnamed spirit teacher through Betty Bethards, TIND, 32.)

The more advanced souls -- whom the Church may call the angels and whom I call "the Wise" -- can exist in tenuous forms within vast vistas of space and lead within it an extraordinarily vivid existence. Tom Jones (1) is quite incapable of facing such a strange and strenuous state of being. (F.W.H. Myers, RTI, n.p.)

(1) I.e., the average man.

Imagine youth immortalized, (1) the fleeting made eternal. Imagine the bloom of a child's face, and the eyes of the ages of knowledge. Imagine the brilliance of a thousand lives concentrated in those eyes and the smile upon the lips of a love so pure that it asks no answering love from those it smiles upon.

But the language of earth cannot describe the unearthly, nor could the understanding of man grasp in a moment those joys which the Beautiful Being revealed to me in that hour of supreme life. For the possibilities of existence have been widened for me, the meanings of the soul have deepened. Those who behold the Beautiful Being are never the same again as they were before. They may forget for a time, and lose in the business of living the magic of that presence; but when ever they do remember, they are caught up again on the wings of the former rapture. (1) ("X," LLDM, 169-70.)

(1) The Living Dead Man sees an angel. (2) The Living Dead Man has been illuminated by the Presence of the angel.

God also works through his agents. .... [These higher beings] are those called angels in scripture. They are mostly spiritual beings who were not incarnated on earth, but act as messengers of dispensers of the divine decrees. He gives them orders, so to speak, and they carry them out. But in working on earth they have to use those nearer who relay the messages or influences to those on earth who are able to receive these influences and implement them. (1) (Gordon Burdick to Grace Rosher, TR, 47.)

(1) The reader should bear in mind that Gordon is newly-arrived in spirit and a resident of the astral planes. His knowledge of angels, as with any discarnate observer for that matter, will be consistent with what he has learned about them in his short stay in the afterlife. It is noteworthy for what it reveals perhaps less about angels, and more about what newly-arrived astral dwellers believe about angels.

'Are angels different from other spirits?'

"The spirits of mortals are different from the angelic host. The angels are more perfected, and belong to a higher organism than we at present have. You may call it a higher form, a more progressive state. Many higher forms already exist, and many more are progressing. Consider the eternal progression that is going on in every planet, and how essential the higher forms of life are there, to forward that progression. The angels were once mortal, some on earth, some on other planets. But the many years of their spiritual life in the celestial world have given them a wisdom and knowledge and perfection of character, that we of the lower planes have not yet achieved. Therefore we do not speak of ourselves as angels; only as spirits moving along the upward way.

"Angels are not connected with earth-bound spirits as we are. They are moving to other and higher studies and activities." (Mary Bosworth to Charlotte Dresser, SWSL, 213.)

So you want to hear more about angels. ... They do not penetrate the lower etheric atmosphere excepting at Christmas and I think Easter, to some extent. But Christmas is the feast of earth - Easter, that of heaven.

On the Eve of Christmas, angels can be seen almost everywhere in the holy places - Westminster Abbey, St. Paul's, Iona, Glastonbury, and so on. (Arthur, Lord Sandys in AL, 37.)

Angels Radiate God's Influence to Man

The ladder between Heaven and earth has always been, but man's unbelief cut him off from the ministry of angels. (Spirit leader Imperator in Moses, MSTTT, n.p.)

We desire to show you that God Himself is the center of influence, and that His influence, flowing through intermediary agencies, permeates humanity; and those influences (angelic, you call them) influence mankind. We wish to show you how the angelic influence surrounding the center of light diffuses itself round those it is able to reach; and how the Spirit of the Most High, traversing those channels, reaches all who are able to receive it.

Man becomes the means of disseminating the knowledge of which he is the unconscious recipient. Man may cultivate the power given to him and aid the work he is chosen for, fostering the dwelling of the Spirit of God among men. The power of God comes from on high, descending through the angel ministers, permeating His chosen messengers, showing men how they may be fellow-workers with God. (Spirit leader Imperator in Moses, MSTTT, n.p.)

The angels, as of old they called them, 'spirits' as ye know them, who traverse the space between you and your God, bring down blessings from Him, while they carry up your prayers to His Throne. These are the steps between God and Man, the channels of influence. There is angelic influence round incarnated souls. (Spirit leader Imperator in Moses, MSTTT, n.p.)

We come to you as the exponent of the ministry of angels. The Great Father, mindful of His Children's wants, sends them the angel ministry of consolation, guidance and love. From the eternal realms of glory we come to minister to mankind. Angels, spirits, friends passed before, (1) coming to minister to those left behind. (Spirit leader Imperator in Moses, MSTTT, n.p.)

(1) In my view, the three elements of Imperator's group - angels, advanced spirits, and friends passed before, some of whom know Stainton Moses and his circle. All three play a useful role.

Angels "Give Birth" to Souls

Only so are we prepared for this higher life, growing gradually into the Divine Image while on earth. Then the beautiful angel of death loosens the earthly bands and we are set free, ready and fitted for the perfect life of this higher sphere. (John Heslop to his wife, F. Heslop, SABL, 134.)

Angels Create the Spirit Planes

So we, who are a little more advanced than [the average man], watch by the gates of death, and we lead him and his comrades, after certain preparatory stages, to the dream which he will inhabit, living still, according to his belief, in earth time. He bears within him the capacity for recalling the whole of his earth life. Familiar surroundings are his desperate need. He does not want a jewelled city, or some monstrous vision of infinity. He craves only for the homely landscape he used to know. He will not find it here in the concrete sense, but he will find, if he so desires it, the illusion.

The Wise, as I call them, can draw from their memory and from the great super-conscious memory of the earth the images of houses and streets, of country as known to these wayfarers so recently come from the earth. The Wise Spirits think, and thereby make a creation which becomes visible to Tom Jones. So, in those early days after his passing, he is not cast into emptiness, into a void. After he has slept in dimness, rested as in a chrysalis while his etheric body is being shaped, he emerges as the butterfly, coming into a world formed for him by the concentrated thought of men of great spiritual discernment, for whom I can find no better term than "the Wise" or "the Creative Life." (F.W.H. Myers, RTI, n.p.)

People of a fairly advanced type who have common interests and have learnt the art of thought creation, have united their thought force to form little "worlds," like that garden or the Hall of Music, which are almost indestructible because there is a constant stream of new power brought by fresh arrivals, to hold it firm and clear and to improve it. ...

The more advanced in spirit that these communities are - tuned in with the harmony of the whole - the more efficiently their thought creations take on form, because they can use the life-force.

It is these advanced beings from the higher empyrean who have created those rest-homes I told you of, for the weak and weary who have not the ability to function for themselves, at first. (Philip Gilbert in PTS, 50-1.)

Angels Create Material Worlds

Angelic beings assist at the birth and development of these new worlds. They build up the conditions necessary for the ultimate production of life, though this process may take millions of years. At first the lowest forms only are produced. Gradually they rise in capacity till the world is ready for the highest intelligences.

It was so in your world and the angels are still working, as they have been since its inception. Recently they have begun a further and higher work. As a race you will rise, till in very truth it will become for you a new heaven and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. (John Heslop to his wife, F. Heslop, SABL, 136-7.)

Creations of life on your globe have been made by spirit power. The higher Intelligences can mould the elements which they gather from your atmosphere, and can form new creations by infusing into them elements of life. The creation of spirits is perpetually going on, both in your world and the spirit world. The instinct of reproduction is not confined to your globe only. (Spirit leader Imperator in Moses, MSTTT, n.p.)

Angels Dictate Scripture and Other High Religious Teachings

Did it ever strike you that this is how all the gospels and epistles were written? The mind of the writer was made quiescent and God's angels could dictate God's message to the world. (John Heslop to his wife, F. Heslop, SABL, 72.)

When a really spiritual nature possesses these gifts, they are employed for the comfort and raising of humanity and the instrument becomes one through which angels and glorified spirits can work. They can only work through an absolutely pure channel. (John Heslop, SABL, 43.)

Angels Protect the Prophets and Messiahs

The three archangels who were concerned in governing the life removed the body. Gabriel, who announced the birth, and Michael and Raphael, aided by spirit power, removed the body, even as before they had removed the body of Moses. These three angels were concerned with your world in all its phases. (Doctor [Athenodorus] in Moses, MSTSW, n.p.)

Angels Educate and Guide the Righteous

We are spirits appointed by God to minister to those whose aspirations go forth toward truth and purity and goodness. You cannot so aspire without attracting beautiful influences about you. Look up, look up, for pure spirits, God's angels, are all around you and some day you will see them. (John Heslop, SABL, 41.)

[The angel] shuddered and continued: "All this time and you still carry horror [from Flanders in WWI] in your aura." I said, "How can I free myself of these experiences?" The angel came quite close to me, and I seemed to be in the centre of a mighty rushing wind. When it had passed, the angel had vanished, but the sigh which I caught on the wind said, "Now you are free." (Arthur, Lord Sandys, in AL, 37.)

The "Shining Ones" ... are working in your midst. They cannot come into your life without influencing the ether around you. To all who are sensitive to the finer vibrations, this is easily perceived. A material nature will have a slight consciousness of its presence. But to the unrepentant evil-loving soul, there would be no attraction in such an environment.

Were it not for this power of purification which the higher spirits exercise on the homes of God's people, your world would long ago have become altogether corrupt. A great part of their work is practically to disinfect these homes and remove evil influences. Then the good which is struggling to grow in your hearts has a chance to breathe, expand into life, and bear flower and fruit. When the day comes and your eyes are opened, and you understand a little about the work of these "Shining Ones," you will be filled with wonder and amazement. But they are only at the beginning of their work. The full glory cannot yet be revealed. What is commenced on earth will be carried on to greater perfection in this fuller life. (John Heslop, SABL, 38-9.)

You are learning the meaning of that Jacob's ladder, set up centuries ago between earth and heaven. Remember that ladder has never been taken away. Up and down pass the angels of God, to comfort His children, to help them, and in time bear them up to the brightness of this other world. (John Heslop, SABL, 47.)

When your eyes are opened, you too will see some of these radiant messengers, but they dare not bring to you their full glory; its brilliance is not for mortal eyes. John, at Patmos, fell before that glory as one dead. They must ever veil themselves on the rare occasions when they come to earth. (John Heslop, SABL, 54.)

Look up, look up, for pure spirits, God's angels, are all around you and some day you will see them. (John Heslop, SABL, 41.)

Oh, when your eyes are opened and you see these "Shining Ones," you will know that you have entertained angels unaware. (John Heslop, SABL, 43.)

The angels and archangels who minister directly to God through eternity have attributes and powers quite beyond finite understanding. To them are committed the behests of the Divine Father. These behests are then passed down from one High Intelligence to another, till they reach us in the Christ Sphere. By us they are communicated to various unfolded worlds.

Angels from more exalted spheres frequently visit the Holy Temple [in the Christ Sphere] to instruct us, but, transcending them all is our Divine Jesus Christ, who was perfected through suffering. (John Heslop, SABL, 97.)

Each of you is assigned one of these angels, which we call a guardian angel, to walk with you through your earthly incarnation. This one joins you at conception and does not leave your side until you leave the body at death. They are with you every second and they are there to keep your record and your book of life. They arrange for you to meet those that you have karmic ties with. They watch how you handle situations. They love you yet they remain aloof and very patient. (1)

Whether you choose to learn is not really their concern. (Unnamed spirit teacher through Betty Bethards, TIND, 32.)

(1) I include this passage here, but I acknowledge that it runs counter to most other information on the same subject I have received, which indicates that it is difficult to contact angels, who usually do not give attention to individual human beings save under exceptional circumstances. However, I am open to finding my opinion on the matter to be in error.

I have written you before of one whom I call the Beautiful Being, one whose province seems to be the universe, whose chosen companions are all men and angelkind, whose playthings are days and ages.

For some reason, the Beautiful Being has lately been so gracious as to take an interest in my efforts to acquire knowledge, and has shown me many things which otherwise I should never have seen.

When a tour of the planet is personally conducted by an angel, the traveller is specially favoured. Letters of introduction to the great and powerful of earth are nothing compared with this introduction, for by its means I see into the souls of all beings, and my visits to their houses are not limited to their drawing-rooms. The Beautiful Being has access everywhere. ...

The other night I was meditating on a flower-seed, for there is nothing so small that it may not contain a world. I was meditating on a flower-seed, and amusing myself by tracing its history, generation by generation, back to the dawn of time. I smile as I use that figure, "the dawn of time," for time has had so many dawns and so many sunsets, and still it is unwearied.

I had traced the genealogy of the seed back to the time when the cave-man forgot his fighting in the strangely disturbing pleasure of smelling the fragrance of its parent flower, when I heard a low musical laugh in my left ear, and something as light as a butterfly's wing brushed my cheek on that side.

I turned to look, and, quick as a flash, I heard the laughter in the other ear, while another butterfly touch came on my right cheek. Then something like a veil was blown across my eyes, and a clear voice said:

"Guess who it is!"

I was all a-thrill with the pleasure of this divine play, and I answered:

"Perhaps you are the fairy that makes blind children dream of daisy fields."

However did you know me?" laughed the Beautiful Being, unwinding the veil from my eyes. "I am indeed that fairy. But you must have been peeping through cracks in the door when I touched the eyes of the blind babies."

"I am always peeping through cracks in the door of the earth people's chamber," I replied.

The Beautiful Being laughed again:

"Will you come and have another peep with me this evening?"

"With pleasure."

"You could not do it with pain if I were by," was the response.

And we started then and there upon the strangest evening's round which I have ever made.

We began by going to the house of a friend of mine and standing quietly in the room while he and his family were at supper. No one saw us but the cat, which began a loud purring and stretched itself with joy at our presence. Had I gone there alone, the cat might have been afraid of me; but who - even a cat - could fear the Beautiful Being?

Suddenly one of the children - the youngest one - looked up from his supper of bread and milk, and said:

"Father, why does milk taste good?"

"I really don't know," admitted the author of his being, "perhaps because the cow enjoyed giving it."

"That father might have been a poet," the Beautiful Being said to me; but no one overheard the remark.

One of the other children complained of feeling sleepy, and put his head down on the edge of the table. The mother started to arouse him, but the Beautiful Being fluttered a mystifying veil before her eyes, and she could not do it.

"Let him sleep if he wants to," she said. "I will put him to bed by and by."

I could see in the brain of the child that he was dreaming already, and I knew that the Beautiful Being was weaving a fairy-tale on the web of his mind. After only a moment he started up, wide awake.

"I dreamed," he said, "that ----- [the writer of these letters] was standing over there and smiling at me as he used to smile, and with him was an angel. I never saw an angel before."

"Come away," whispered the Beautiful Being again. "To brides who dream of motherhood much also is revealed, and for this evening we remain unknown."

We passed along the margin of a river which divides a busy town. Suddenly from a house by the river-bank we heard the tinkle of a guitar and a woman's sweet voice singing:

"When other lips and other hearts Their tale of love shall tell,... Then you'll remember - you'll remember me."

The Beautiful Being touched my hand and whispered:

"The life that is so sweet to these mortals is a book of enchantment for me."

"Yet you have never tasted human life yourself?"

"On the contrary, I taste it every day; but I only taste it - and pass on. Should I consume it, I might not be able to pass on."

"But do you never long so to consume it?"

"Oh but the thrill is in the taste! Digestion is a more or less tiresome process."

"I fear you are a divine wanton," I said, affectionately.

"Be careful," answered the Beautiful Being. "He who fears anything will lose me in the fog of his own fears."

"You irresistible one!" I cried. "Who are you? What are you?"

"Did you not say yourself a little while ago that I was the fairy who made blind babies dream of daisy fields?"

"I love you," I said, "with an incomprehensible love."

"All love is incomprehensible," the Beautiful Being answered. "But come, brother, let us climb the hill of vision. When you are out of breath, if you catch at my flying veil I will wait till you are rested."

Strange things we saw that night. I should weary you if I told you all of them.

We stood on the crater of an active volcano and watched the dance of the fire-spirits. Did you fancy that salamanders were only seen by unabstemious poets? They are as real - to themselves and to those who see them - as are the omnibus-drivers in the streets of London.xx The real and the unreal! If I were writing an essay now, instead of the narrative of a traveller in a strange country, I should have much to say on the subject of the real and the unreal.

The Beautiful Being has changed my ideas about the whole universe. I wonder if, when I come back to the earth again, I shall remember all the marvels I have seen. ...

No one can be sad when the Beautiful Being is near. That is the charm of that marvellous entity: to be in its presence is to taste the joys of immortal life. ...

I wish I could explain the influence of the Beautiful Being. It is unlike anything else in the universe. It is elusive as a moonbeam, yet more sympathetic than a mother. It is daintier than a rose, yet it looks upon ugly things with a smile. It is purer than the breath of the sea, yet it seems to have no horror of impurity. It is artless as a child, yet wiser than the ancient gods, a marvel of paradoxes, a celestial vagabond, the darling of the unseen. (Judge David P. Hatch, LLDM, Letter XLI.)

Will you listen to another song, or chant, or whatever you choose to call it, of that amazing angel whom we know as the Beautiful Being?

Why do you fear to question me? I am the great answerer of questions. Though my answers are often symbols, yet words themselves are only symbols. I have not visited you for a season, for when I am around, you can think of nothing else, and it is well that you should think of those who have trodden the path you are treading. You can pattern your ways on those of others, you can hardly pattern your ways on mine. I am a light in the darkness - my name you do not need to know; A name is a limitation, and I refuse to be limited. In the ancient days of the angels, I refused to enter the forms of my own creation, except to play with them. There is a hint for you, if you like hints. He who is held by his own creations becomes a slave. That is one of the differences between me and men. What earthly father can escape his children? What earthly mother wishes to? But I! I can make a rose to bloom - then leave it for another to enjoy. My joy was in the making. It would be dull for me to stay with a rose until its petals fell. The artist who can forget his past creations may create greater and greater things. The joy is in the doing, not in the holding fast to that which is done. Oh, the magic of letting go! It is the magic of the gods. There are races of men to whom I have revealed myself. They worship me. You need not worship me, for I do not require worship. That would be to limit myself to my own creations, if I needed anything from the souls I have touched with my beauty. Oh, the magic of letting go! The magic of holding on? Yes, there is a magic in holding on to a thing until it is finished and perfect; But when a thing is finished, whether it be a poem, a love, or a child, let it go. In that way you are free again and may begin another. It is the secret of eternal youth. Never look back with regret; look back only to learn what is behind you. Look forward always; it is only when a man ceases to look forward to things that he begins to grow old. He settles down. I have said to live in the moment; that is the same thing seen from another side. The present and the future are playfellows; we do not play when we study the past. I am the great playfellow of men. (Judge David P. Hatch, LLDM, Letter XLVII.)

The Beautiful Being lives in eternity, as we fancy that we live in time. Will you write down here another of that angel's chants?

When you see me in the green trees and in the green light under trees, know that you are near to me: When you hear my voice in the silence, know that I speak for you. The immortal loves to speak to the immortal in the mortal, and there is joy in calling to the joy which dozes in the heart of a soul of earth. When joy is awake, the soul is awake. You look for God in the forms of men and women, and sometimes you find Him there; But you look for me in your own soul; the deeper the gaze, the fairer the vision. Yes, I am in Nature, and I am in you, when you look for me there; For Nature is dual, and the half you carry within you. All things are one and dual - even I, and that is why you may find me. Oh, the charm of being free, to wander at will round the earth and heaven, and through the souls of men! I am lighter than the thistle-down, but more enduring than the stars: The permanent is impalpable, and only the impalpable endures. The road is not long which leads to the castle of dreams; the far-away is nearer than next-door, but only the dreamer finds it. When labour is light, the pay is sure; when the days are hard, their reward is tardy. Be glad, and I will repay you. I would write my name on the leaves of your heart, but only the angels can read the writing. Who bears my unknown name on the petals of his heart is accepted among the angels for the flower he is; his perfume reaches heaven. There is pollen in the heart, child of earth, and it fructifies the flowers of faith; There is faith in the soul, child of time, and it bears the seeds of all things. The seasons come and the seasons go, but the springtime is eternal. I can find that in you which was lost in the April of the world. (Judge David P. Hatch, LLDM, Letter LI.)

Angels Usher Spirits to Their Meeting with the Lord

When I had tried in vain to communicate with Minerva and with Ellen, I began to be a little sad. It seemed to me as if I were away from the real interests which bound me in life. ... Then it was that the Good Angel who had welcomed me into this world took me to see my Lord. ...

It was beautiful and glorious, exceeding all my powers of description. There was no expectation of the meeting nor was I even able to realize the fact that I had met Him until I saw the whole landscape flame and glow as with the radiance of opened Heaven when He spoke to me. The cause for this difficulty was, I suppose, the extreme naturalness of all that I saw and heard. There is such a difficulty in realizing that today, as yesterday, is the same. When there is something of what we used to call the supernatural order occurring in the midst of what seems so very natural it is difficult to realize it. But, oh, my friend, when it is realized, what a change occurs! The whole world was transfigured in the realization of the intensity and constancy of His love. And from that moment I have never been sad, save from my own shortcomings and my own lack of love. Oh, my dearest friend, if only we could live more in the realized sense of His love. (Julia Ames, AD, 87-8.)

You may remember when John fell at the feet of the angel who showed him the New Jerusalem, he exclaimed, "See thou do it not. I am thy fellow-servant and of thy brethren the prophets. Worship God." (John Heslop, SABL, 97.)

Angels Enlighten the Worthy

Yes, I have seen angels, if by angels you mean spiritual beings who have never dwelt as men upon the earth.

Shall I tell you of one whom I call the Beautiful Being? If it has a name in heaven, I have not heard it. Is the Beautiful Being man or woman? Sometimes it seems to be one, sometimes the other. ...

For the moment I had escaped the clutches of Time, and was living in that etheric quietude which is merely the activity of rapture raised to the last degree. I must have been enjoying a foretaste of that paradoxical state which the wise ones of the East call Nirvana. ...

Standing before me was the Beautiful Being, radiant in its own light. Had it been less lovely I might have gasped with wonder; but the very perfection of its form and presence diffused an atmosphere of calm. I marvelled not, because the state of my consciousness was marvel. I was lifted so far above the commonplace that I had no standard by which to measure the experience of that moment.

Imagine youth immortalised, the fleeting made eternal. Imagine the bloom of a child's face and the eyes of the ages of knowledge. Imagine the brilliancy of a thousand lives concentrated in those eyes, and the smile upon the lips of a love so pure that it asks no answering love from those it smiles upon.

But the language of earth cannot describe the unearthly, nor could the understanding of a man grasp in a moment those joys which the Beautiful Being revealed to me in that hour of supreme life. For the possibilities of existence have been widened for me, the meanings of the soul have deepened. Those who behold the Beautiful Being are never the same again as they were before. They may forget for a time, and lose in the business of living the magic of that presence; but whenever they do remember, they are caught up again on the wings of the former rapture.

It may happen to one who is living upon the earth; it may happen to one in the spaces between the stars; but the experience must be the same when it comes to all; for only to one in the state in which it dwells could the Beautiful Being reveal itself at all. (Judge David P. Hatch, LLDM, Letter XXXV.)

Angels Protect Other Beings in Their Work

It seems strange to you to picture Daniel in the den of lions, untouched, unharmed; but were your eyes opened and you could see, as we do, a servant of God passing through the slums and hells of your great cities, you would be filled with wonder that he ever came out alive. Goodness is greater than evil; ever bear this in mind. When a soul aspires to this purity and holiness, the Angel of the Presence will save that alive. (John Heslop, FMABL, 62.)

When we know in advance that our presence is desired on earth, we ask that the rays of light may be granted us to illuminate our path. Sometimes, as we approach the earth, the mists of evil or ignorance cling on either side of the rays and shadow them. If we are not very watchful, they are apt to disturb the conditions and impinge on the minds of those we are trying to help.

Hence, numerous Angelic Beings come and protect the rays and especially is this so when we try to communicate some great truth. Should one of the Higher Intelligences visit your earth, these Angelic Beings form themselves into a body-guard and so fulfil the words, "Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His paths straight." (John Heslop, FMABL, 32-3.)

Now, it was down one of these pathways of light that we came to you on Friday. Had your eyes been opened, you would have seen these shining angels in the room and they extended on either side of the rays far into the heavens. They were guarding the Exalted Spirit who came to you and wrote through the hand of your friend. Bend low in reverence, my Beloved, for the Master had sent you a Message and these Holy Ones will oft-times visit you, as your heart becomes purer and full of the love of the Christ. (John Heslop, FMABL, 33.)

Angels Assist Those in Need

No sooner had this thought of solitude found lodgment in my heart than I saw standing before me the Beautiful Being about whom I wrote you a little time ago. It smiled, and said to me:

"He who is sadly conscious of his solitude is no longer in heaven. So I have come to hold you here (1) yet a little while."

"Is this the particular heaven where you dwell?" I asked.

"Oh, I dwell nowhere and everywhere," the Beautiful Being answered. "I am one of the voluntary wanderers, who find the charm of home in every heavenly or earthly place."

"So you sometimes visit earth?"

"Yes, even the remotest hells I go to, but I never stay there long. My purpose is to know all things, and yet to remain unattached."

"And do you love the earth?"

"The earth is one of my playgrounds. I sing to the children of earth sometimes; and when I sing to the poets, they believe that their muse is with them. (Judge David P. Hatch, LLDM, Letter XXXVIII.)

(1) The Angel has come to Judge Hatch when the latter has ascended to a higher realm for a visit and felt sad. Upon feeling sadness, the visiting soul would have to return to the realm from which he or she has come, but the Angel is assisting to prolong the visit.

Angels Serve as Transition Guides

I found myself free from my body. It was such a strange new feeling. I was standing close to the bedside on which my body was lying; I saw everything in the room just as before I closed my eyes. I did not feel any pain in "dying"; I felt only a great calm and peace. Then I awoke and I was standing outside my old body in the room. There was no one there at first, just myself and my old body. At first I wondered [that] I was so strangely well. Then I saw that I had passed over.

I waited about a little; then the door opened and Mrs. H. came in. She was very sad; she addressed my poor body as if it was myself. I was standing looking at her, but all her thoughts were upon the poor old body I had left behind. It seemed so absurd I could not help laughing. I did not try to speak at first; I waited to see what would happen.

Then I felt as though a great warm flood of light had come into the room and I saw an angel. She, for at first she seemed to be a female, came to me and said -

"I am sent to teach you the laws of the new life."

And, as I looked, she gently touched me and said: "We must go."

Then I left the room and my poor old body, and passed out. It was so strange; the streets were full of spirits. I could see them as we passed; they seemed to be just like ourselves. My angel had wings; they were beautiful. She was all robed in white.

We went at first through the streets, then we went through the air, till we came to the place where we met friends who had passed on before.

There were Mr. M-, and Mr. M-, and Ethel A-, and many others. They told me much about the spirit world. They said I must learn its laws and endeavour to be as useful as I could. The angel who remained with me all the time helped me to explain.

The spirit friends had their life much as it was here; they lived and loved, and if they had not to work for their daily bread, they had still plenty to do.

Then I began to be sad about you [probably to her friend, Ellen], and I wanted to go back; the angel took me swiftly through the air where I came from. When I entered the death-chamber, there lay my body. It was no longer of interest to me, but I was so grieved to see how you were all weeping over my worn-out clothes. I wished to speak to you. I saw you, darling, all wet with tears and I was so sad I could not cheer you. I very much wanted to speak and tell you how near I was to you, but I could not make you hear. I tried, but you took not notice. I said to the angel -

"Will it always be thus?"

She said: "Wait; the time will come when you will speak with her. But at present she cannot hear, neither can she understand." (Julia Ames, AD, 41-44.)

[When] the disembodied soul immediately after death ... meets the Guardian Angel there is usually a blank wonderment.

All is so new, and there are such unexpected samenesses as well as differences. When, for instance, we wake into the new life we are still in the same world. There are all the familiar things around us - the walls, the pictures, the window, the bed, and the only new thing is your own body out of which you stand and wonder how it can be that it is there and that it is no longer you. And then you begin clearly to understand what has happened. ... The first thing you notice that is not the same is the Angel. You are the same. I mean that there is no break in your consciousness, your memory, your sex. I was a woman in my bodily life and I am woman still. There is no change there. But you are in a manner different.

The Angel Guardian who came to me had wings, as I said. It is not unusual, but if we please we can assume them. They are no more necessary than any of the contrivances by which you attempt to attain mastery of the spirit over the burden of matter. We think and we are there. Why, then, wings? They are scenic illusions useful to convey the idea of superiority to earthbound conditions, but we do not use them any more than we use steam-engines. But I was glad my Guide had wings. It seemed more like what I thought it would be and ought to be and I was at once more at ease than I would otherwise have been. (Julia Ames, AD, 71-2.)

When my Guide came he spoke to me in a very sweet, strong voice that had in it the confidence of the Invisible. And I was thrilled through and through with its note, which did not seem strange to me. Nor was this strange for he had often been with me in my earth-life, although I had never seen him. I recognized him as an old and familiar part of myself and this at first made me think that it was a woman. And, when he said, "Come!" I did not hesitate. There was, as it were, a natural response to what seemed as the prompting of your own conscience. That is often the case. We have all our guides. These angels, unknown and unseen to us, prompt us to all good actions and dissuade us from evil. They are with us in thought and we often receive their warnings as if they were the promptings of our own spirit. So they are; but the spirit which prompts is quite outside our own conscious self. (Julia Ames, AD, 72-3.)

The Guardian Angel is indeed a kind of other self, a higher, purer, and more developed section of your own personality. This is perhaps a little difficult to understand, but it is true. (Julia Ames, AD, 73.)

The soul in the body hears but dimly, and sees not at all the innumerable influences with which it is surrounded. ... We are on earth, as it were, with blinkers on. ... Hence when we close our eyes in the sleep of death, it is more of a laying down of the blinkers that limited and confined our vision than almost anything else. (Julia Ames, AD, 73-4.)

When we stand for the first time on this side there is not so much fear as great awe and curiosity. The sense of being in a land altogether undiscovered and unexplored, where there may be all manner of strange beings, perhaps hostile, fills you with a moment's trepidation. And then it is that the good Lord in His kindness sends to the newly-delivered soul the Guardian Angel of whom I wrote before.

So far as I have been able to ascertain, this Messenger of Love and Mercy meets all men when they die. (1) In this there is no distinction made between the saved and the lost, and the Messenger is sent alike to all. But the lost have not the faculty to see him. The saved not only profit by his counsels, but feel him, and know he is with them. It is to all that the good Lord ministers - to all on your side and on this. His loving kindness is over all His creatures. (Julia Ames, AD, 67.)

(1) Notice how Julia has changed her opinion in the following quote, written around a decade later than the above quote. Here she says that angels "sometimes" attend transitions. The research that underpins this book suggests that angels may attend the transitions of developed human beings, but seldom figure in the transitions of "normal, average" human beings.

Now, when I say that angels attend the new-born soul, I should have said that there are sometimes angels. Not always angels, sometimes nobody, sometimes worse than nobody. (Julia Ames, AD, 164.)

When I came over you will remember I was at first quite alone, when I was allowed by my experience with the nurse to discover for myself what had happened and then came the angel who took me apparently a long, long way to my relations and friends. This is sometimes the case and sometimes not. Sometimes even before the soul leaves the body, it hears the welcome sound of the voices loved and lost, sees the angels, and hears the music of the spheres. (1) But these cases are comparatively few. Not until the body is cast off like a worn-out garment do you begin to see, hear, and understand the new life. (Julia Ames, AD, 164.)

(1) As far as I am aware, seeing angels and hearing the music of the spheres upon passing over in fact does happen to a very select number of saintly individuals, but is not commonplace.

I met my beloved friends. The meeting was very pleasant, but also in some way strange. There was a sense of difference. Those whom I met were still as loving as when I had bidden them adieu, but they were also somewhat different. There was nothing that reminded me of the pain and sorrow in which I had last seen them. They had grown spiritually. I felt myself a poor child beside them. Yet they were not haughty, only they knew more and loved more. They were very tender and kind to me. My Angel Guide handed me over to them. She (1) said, "She needs what you can give her." (Julia Ames, AD, 78.)

(1) Stead's footnote: "Julia speaks of this Guide indifferently as he and she explaining, when I asked, that in our sense angels are neither male nor female." This statement, plus the description of the Guide having wings (whether assumed for the occasion or not), lends support to the notion that Julia is actually speaking of an angelic, rather than a human, being when she speaks of her Guide.

Angels Perform Rescue Work

I have looked into hell! I may have to return to that region. I shall be given my choice. Grant that I may be strong enough to offer myself freely. Hell is a thought region. Evil dwells there and works out its purposes. The forces used to hold mankind down in the darkness of ignorance are generated in hell! It is not a place; it is a condition. The human race has created the condition. It has taken millions of years to reach its present state. I dare not tell you what I saw there. My brother needed help. A soldier had been killed who had committed very evil deeds. I will draw a veil over them. He was a degenerate, a murderer, a sensualist. He died cursing God and man. An awful death. This man was drawn towards hell by the law of attraction. My brother had been told ... to rescue him. He took me with him. At first I refused to go. Then I went. ... An angel of light came to protect us; otherwise we should have been lost in the blackness of the pit. This sounds sensational, even grotesque. It is the truth.

The power of evil! Have you any idea of its mighty strength, its lure? Can that power be an illusion too? The angel said so. The angel said the power of hell was now at its supreme height. It drew its power from man! As man rose toward spiritual life the powers of darkness would subside and finally become extinguished. 'Extiniguished' is my word. The angel said 'transmuted.' That conception is quite beyond me. We descended gloomy avenues. The darkness grew. There was a strange allurement about the atmosphere. Even the angel's light grew dim. I thought we were lost. At moments I hoped we were lost. So strong is the attraction. I cannot understand it. Something sensual within me leapt and burned. I thought I had emptied myself of self before undertaking this great adventure. Had I done so, I should have been safe. As it was, I should have been lost but for the angel's and my brother's help. I felt the giant lusts of the human race. They thrilled through me. I could not keep them out. We descended deeper. I say 'descended.' If hell is not a place, how can one 'descend'? I asked my brother. He said we were not moving in a physical sense. Our progress depended on certain thought processes evoked by the Will. (Private Thomas Dowding, PD, 14.)

I never reached the point where the rescue was attempted. The angel and my brother went on alone. I waited for their return in what seemed to be a deep dark forest. There was no life, no light there. One felt stagnation everywhere. The angel said that this was the most insidious kind of hell, stagnation, because no one recognized it as such. (Private Thomas Dowding, PD, 33.)

Those who enter it are led to believe that the only realities are the sense passions and the beliefs of the human 'I.' This hell consists in believing the unreal to be real. It consists in the lure of the senses without the possibility of gratifying them. I was told a great deal more about this awful region, but I must not pass it on. The angel said that the 'condition' would ultimate dissolve into nothingness. Hell, apparently, or that part of it we are speaking about, depends for its existence on human thoughts and feelings. (Private Thomas Dowding, PD, 34.)

The angel and my brother returned. They had found him for whom they sought. He would not come away. They had to leave him there. Fear held him. He said his existence was awful, but he was afrai8d to move for fear worse conditions befell.

Fear chained him. No outside power can unchain that man. Release will come from within some day. Sadly we returned to our own places. I began to realize what power King Fear holds over nearly all of us. The angel said that Fear would be destroyed when Love came into her own. (Private Thomas Dowding, PD, 35.)

Angels Instruct and Train Transition Guides

There were nine of us in the group, all that had passed the tests out of eighty-one in the fourteenth circle in the hall of instruction. We were welded into an instrument of succour - we were initiated into spiritual mysteries - we were shown a portion of the plan, a small fragment which we are destined to fulfil. Each one of the nine was allotted a special task and a place in the ranks of the army of liberation. Our task us to free souls from the chains of their selfish thoughts which hang around them miserably upon their arrival on the borderland. You and many like you are members of this glorious army.

In the hall of initiation our teacher handed us over to a Master who opened the doorways of our inner understanding. Of this I can tell you nothing now. Remember how sad and broken I was when I first came over here! Now I have my use and can share my joy with you. Take heart, all who still find themselves enshrouded in the gloomy canopies of self!

At the Master's bidding, an angel showed us the conditions surrounding the various states of Illumination, the variations of light and colour that could most effectively destroy the various kinds of darkness.

We were shown how to protect our own minds from gloom and fear; how to reflect light through our every thought and deed. We were instructed how to meet and transmute the evil gases let loose in the purgatorial regions by thoughts of fear and sensuality. We were taken up into the temple tower and shown a vision of the glories of the seven celestial spheres.

I am only allowed to indicate vaguely what it means to pass through the first gateway of initiation on the path of selfless service. Is it not wonderful that I am here? Am I not fortunate to have been chosen for such glorious work? Do not wait until you come over. Start at once upon the pathway that will lead you to the temple of initiation. (Private Thomas Dowding, PD, 63-5.)

I feel it my duty to tell you something of what the angel and the Messenger said, not because I understand or believe it all, but because they have been good to me. They have recognized my ignorance, [but] have not scoffed at my unworthiness. I have not come to preach, to show the way to heavenly states. I do not know my way there so how could I guide you? You are probably nearer heaven than I, though still on earth. Because I pass on what has been told to me, do not think that I am a 'superior' person. Do not think that I say must be true. It may be. I cannot tell myself. (Thomas Dowding, PD, 37.)

Angels Sometimes Descend to Earth and are Born for Special Training

Then there are angelic beings who voluntarily descend to earth and are born there that they may undergo special experiences and training. Having passed through its trials and discipline, they return to assume great positions of power and influence in God's universe. (John Heslop, SABL, 98.)

The Question of Wings

My angel had wings; they were beautiful. (Julia Ames, AD, 72.)

Wings are actual as well as symbolic. They are appendages that supplement spiritual faculties, that belong to some orders of angelic beings and not to others. Our Lord has no wings. He does not need them. I have wings (1) if I wish to have them, but can do without when my spiritual powers are fresh and full; for in this borderland world where I elect to stay, one needs refreshment and rest. (Philemon [Archdeacon Wilberforce], LFOS, 10.)

(1) Philemon is not an angel but a rescue worker who serves in the borderland or near-earth plane.

Suggestions that It is Possible to Rise into the Ranks of Angels

It is possible to rise into this angelhood. (John Heslop, SABL, 99.)

By virtue of this earth training and the very discipline you so dread, you can rise higher than the angels who have neither sinned nor suffered. Nay, as angels, you can even do work impossible to them. (John Heslop, SABL, 99.)

Now, my Beloved, is not this thought a great incentive to a life of holiness and purity on earth and to the patient bearing of trials and disciple? To become one day an angel of God, ministering in His Temple, carrying out his behests and rising from glory to glory through all eternity. And to those twin-souls who have overcome is this crown and honour given by God, to whom be praise for ever and ever. (John Heslop, SABL, 99.)

"[The infants who passed over] are not pure spirits yet," we are told, "for then they would belong to the angelic host." (Spirit Control Mary Bosworth to Charlotte E. Dresser, LHH, 70.)

As I told you some years ago, the law of affinity governs all life, two halves of a perfect whole. Every human being has his or her affinity. Some meet and are united on earth, while others wander through life and never find their other soul until they come here. When twin-spirits, the male and the female of God's creation, have advanced to a certain degree of spirituality, both having passed through the earth life, they are able (in a way quite incomprehensible to you) to become so united that they form one being only - an angel. This angelic being has far-reaching powers and can do great work for God. Then, the work accomplished, they can, if desired, again assume their separate identities. This is how spirits who have passed the earth life can become angels. (John Heslop, SABL, 97-8.)

Jesus Spoke to the Angels as One of Their Own Order

The life of Christ, so far as it was public, was comprised within three years and a few months. For that the previous thirty years had been a preparation. During all that time He was receiving instruction from those exalted angels who inspired Him with zeal and love for His mission. He was a constant communer with the world of spirit; and was the more able to drink in their teachings that His body was no bar to His spirit. In the case of most incarnate spirits, who have descended to minister on earth, the assumption of corporeity dims spiritual vision, and cuts it off from remembrance of its previous existence. Not so with Him. So little did His ethereal body blind the sense of spirit, that He could converse with the angels as one of their own order, (1) who was cognisant of their life, and remembered His own part in it before incarnation. (Unnamed spirit communicator in Moses, ST, 170.)

(1) Cf. Pseudo-Dionysius: "I do not need to remind you ... of the fact that because of [Jesus'] generous work for salvation he himself entered the order of revealers and is called the "angel of great counsel." Indeed, when he announced what he knew of the Father, was it not as an angel?" (In CWPD, 159.)