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The Seven Purposes by Margaret Cameron 1867 - 1947

 

III

 

LIKE the rest of the family, Mrs. Wylie feared the effect of the Western visit upon her mother's new-found tranquillity of spirit, and she was also uneasy lest Mrs. Gaylord had been unable to secure Pullman accommodations.

 

"Mother is all right and happy," Frederick told us, in the evening. "She is still reading her precious book"—a copy of his earlier interviews, which she carried with her.

 

Some one asked whether he meant that her general condition was "all right," or that, she was "all right" on the train.

 

"On the train. She's blissful!"

 

This was verified a day or two later by a letter from Mrs. Gaylord, in which she said: "I came away filled with strength and calm and joy." She also mentioned casually that she had found a vacant section on the train, and traveled comfortably.

 

"How does purpose combat forces of evil?" Mr. Wylie asked.


 

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"It is done by overpowering them, as the sun dispels mist, separating them into smaller particles or units. And when that is impossible, by driving them like clouds before a high wind. They work for evil, but can be separated sometimes from the mass and united with constructive forces. Only small fragments of the main forces can be so converted, at present. Mostly we rout them."

 

"Does an evil soul lose personality?" his sister questioned. "Is it absorbed, or broken into fragments?"

 

"The individuality that finds its first expression in your life is never absorbed or broken up. I speak of the forces of disintegration, composed of more individuals than the greatest army, as being routed. We mass ourselves and our purposes against them and theirs, when we fight in the open here. But as has been explained in the Lessons, the very material form you have was originally an effort to evolve a force not conquerable by purpose alone. Both good and evil forces, in your phrase— constructive and destructive, in ours—took possession of these concrete forms, and now the bitterness of the fight is greatest where both forces are represented in one individual. The only way we can fight that effectively is to sit on the job, and try to call


 

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to the purpose that is ours more clearly and appealingly, or more commandingly, than the other fellow does. That's the reason we are begging you now to work with us. A great crisis is at hand, and we want you to meet it consciously in your life there, knowing its nature, so that we can have your help, not only in withstanding material onslaughts, like Germany's invasions and brutality, but in things of the spirit—the real things, the eternal things—so that together we may win a real victory. The individual whose purposes are fundamentally destructive is not damned nor lost. He is just delayed. Sooner or later he must work his way up, and it is entirely up to him whether he does it sooner or later—after he reaches this life, especially. In your life, he is sometimes confused or misled. He pays for that, too—not pays, but makes good for it, by working here for the development he had not sense enough to take there. But his delay is brief, beside that of the essentially destructive force."

 

A little later, Mrs. Wylie spoke again of her uneasiness about her mother's visit to K——, and some one suggested telegraphing her that Frederick had been with us that evening.

 

"Give her my love when you wire," he directed,


 

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"and tell her I'm on the crossing, still ringing that bell. Don't you worry, Sis. I'll go and stay with her most of the time she's there, and she'll know it. I'll come to you, Easter, too, for a little while… Tell Dad I'll be taking care of Mother. He needn't fret about it."

 

"Do you want me to look up 'Bob' and tell him about his little girl?" she asked.

 

He replied, "Yes, do." And when she asked if he could give her something more definite than a Christian name by which to trace this unknown man among his large and scattered acquaintance, he wrote the name of a Middle Western city, adding: "You can find out from the fellows. All of them know Bob."

 

This seems to be a case of marked deflection of ray, to use Mr. Kendal's simile, for up to the day when this manuscript goes to the printer the Gaylord family have been unable to identify "Bob," although there was a confused intimation, late in April, that Mrs. Z—— had made a mistake in the name, and a suggestion that the surname was Roberts. It is not impossible that this was one of those wily incursions of disintegrating force, with intent to confuse, to which we afterward grew accustomed.


 

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On Friday and Saturday of that week (March 29th and 30th), there were interviews of great interest, but of too personal a character to be extensively quoted.

 

Replying to the inquiry of a man for his father, Mary K. said: "He was a great force here, but has passed on into the life beyond ours. He can and will return to talk to you, but not immediately."

 

"Tell G—— the constructive forces are working for him, as he for them," was the answer to questions about a man in this life. "Temporary disappointments are unimportant. Do not fear. We build together, and surely. The result is certain and for his purpose—progress, light, and justice. His individual concern is to have faith, follow his purpose, and trust us. The only failure possible comes from admitting doubt, disintegration, and fear."

 

An expression of anxiety concerning another man on this plane was met thus: "N—— has felt his own purpose stirring a little…. A perfectly good purpose when he finds it. He has had many forces fighting, within and without. He will wake when this message is given to the world. He is too intelligent not to recognize truth as obvious as this will be." Some one asked when this would occur. "When Margaret completes the book she will


 

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publish soon." This was the first intimation of the way in which I was expected to carry out Mary K.'s instructions to make this experience known, concerning which we had wondered not a little.

 

It was suggested that a member of this person's family might help him, from the next plane, but this was said to be impossible, as they were not of the same purpose.

 

"The family connection is nothing here. His own purposes know him, both good and bad, and they are fighting it out. He has answered first one, then another. But fundamentally he is for justice. He will answer to that in the end…. Sometimes he will shut it all out and yield to the forces seeking to destroy him, but he will fight in the end for freedom and justice."

 

"She is not of our forces," was the reply to an inquiry about an artist who left this life twenty years ago. This was crossed out, however, and "not mentally free" substituted.

 

When I was alone, I asked Mary K. about this woman, and she returned: "She is not a destructive force, but is deterrent. She is working out problems not met when she should have met them, and is fighting for growth, just as she soon or late will fight for progress.


 

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She fights for herself, her own growth, and not for progress in the larger sense."

 

Afterward, I learned, from some one who knew tier well, of this woman's devouring and unquenchable ambition for supremacy in her profession.

 

Whimsical Anne Lowe, writing to three friends of her continued association with them, said: O Believe—know—that we are a positive force, and united we stand, hurrah! Our faith helps all beneficent purpose. Its force is freed and multiplied by the sum of your participation."

 

"I wonder if she could tell us what our purposes are?" Elizabeth said.

 

"Yours is Progress, Ruth's is Light, Katharine's is Healing and Light. You are blended. Elizabeth to push, Ruth to illumine and interpret Katharine to understand and soothe."

 

Ruth said, wistfully: "Then all I can do is to shine?"

 

"Interpreters are really prophets," she was told. "That is all the greatest prophets ever were. You are of their purpose, so cheer up!"

 

Interrupting a little discussion as to whether dominant purpose is born in us or developed, she said: "We are born with many purposes, latent and striving, but as we live we make daily choice."


 

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That evening, our old friend Maynard Holt came for a long talk. After some entirely personal exchange, Cass spoke of Maynard as having been, in this life, a believer in individualism.

 

Beginning with some allusion to former discussions between them, concerning what he called "the temporary manifestations of Socialism," Maynard replied: "Now I can tell you definitely that the salvation of the civilized world is dependent on the independence of the individual…. It's a big and glorious period in eternal history. The time has almost come for the open fight. Prepare your ground carefully, and gird up your loins for combat. It's coming.

 

A little later, in a similar connection, he said: "The conscious co-operation of purpose is the only sound principle of Socialism. That is eternally sound. And now that we are consciously and forcefully working in harmony with the great and eternal purpose, they can't stop us.

 

"Has this new opportunity of communication with this plane made you over there happier?" he was asked.

 

"It has opened an entirely new channel to us here in this part of the world. In the Far East, we have the channel, but no hard-pan


 

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to support the stream. Here science gives us a foundation from which to work, but we have had no channel through which to reach it…. Everywhere in the civilized world the minds of intelligent people have turned to this. There is reaching and questioning and longing, and a dawning faith."

 

At this time I did not know how frequently belief in the possibility of communication with those in a life beyond is accompanied by an inclination toward the Oriental philosophies, but Maynard's allusion to the Far East was given greater significance by the replies to later questions.

 

To an inquiry concerning the possible influence of these teachings in Germany, he returned: "They are a philosophical and abstract-minded people, and they'll be hunting a plausible and satisfactory explanation of themselves before long. And this is less uncomplimentary than the others will be, besides having the undeniable advantage of being true, which they will have learned, by that time, to appreciate."

 

"Can't those with eyes, ears, and understanding learn wisely to control, lead, and uplift the mass?" Cass asked. "In Russia, for example?"

 

Don't be in such a hurry. There's all


 

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eternity, and evolution is slow. But the mills of the gods grind on, and the grist is sure. The Russians, like the Germans, must climb their own hills. America has a few to climb, too. This will help many, uplift a few, escape the mass, but leaven the whole. There is no millennium at hand. This is just a light by which the path is made more clear. It will influence many thousands, in many countries, but the inert mass must work its way on, through the old channels of evolution, made easier by knowledge and by experience of those ahead, but not to be evaded or avoided by any miracle."

 

"But it will bring conscious purpose and effort to bear in helping this evolution?"

 

"Surely. It is a message eagerly awaited and desired."

 

Later that evening, I asked Mary K. whether she could tell me anything about the book Anne Lowe had said I was to publish.

 

"Yes. It must be ready for publication by Fall."

 

"Evidently sordid, material details of book manufacture escape your attention," I said, laughing. "This is the thirtieth of March, and you have not yet given me all the material for your book. When you have done that, it still must be edited, assembled for publication,


 

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copied, accepted by publishers, printed, and sold. Perhaps you don't know that salesmen for publishing-houses begin taking orders for Fall publications in June, and generally carry sample copies of the books with them?"

 

She said I would have the necessary material in a month or six weeks, and that editing would "take another month," from which it is evident that no eight-hour law is operative on her plane. She also advised me to see publishers at once, tell them what was happening, read them parts of communications already received, and arrange for Fall publication, conditional upon their satisfaction with the completed manuscript—which, not without misgivings concerning such procedure, I immediately prepared to act upon.

 

A night or so later, Maynard Holt came again, with his mother, who said: "Maynard brought me to call."

 

When we asked if she worked with those on this plane, she replied: "Yes, but also with undeveloped purposes, here before their time."

 

Returning to the subject of Russian upheaval, Maynard said: "They are goners for some time, now. It will take them long to assemble their purposes again constructively."

 

"If you had been here," Cass asked, "would


 

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you have viewed the Russian situation and its effect on the world as you do now?"

 

"Not quite, I think. We see farther ahead, and have sounder premises from which to argue than you've ever had there."

 

"This plan, of course, includes all the people of the world," Cass continued. "Are those who leave here undeveloped, still undeveloped there?"

 

"There is a large and growing population here of the undeveloped," was Maynard's reply, "which is one of the lesser reasons for our keen desire to purposize the world."

 

PART - 4