A word of warning in regard to diagrams used for purposes of illustration may not be out of place. The student should remember that anything that is reduced into another dimension can never be accurate. The picture of a house would mean little or nothing to us if we had never seen a house. In that case we would see in the picture only lines and blotches. It would convey no meaning to us. Diagrams used to illustrate superphysical matters are much less true representations of the reality, for the simple reason that in the case of the picture, the three-dimensional house is only reduced to two dimensions, while in the case of diagrams of the Periods, Worlds and Globes, the realities possess from four to seven dimension, and the diagrams of two dimensions by which it is endeavored to represent them are thus so much further removed from the possibility of correctly portraying them. We must constantly bear in mind that these Worlds interpenetrate, that the Globes interpenetrate, and that the way they are shown in the diagram is analogous to taking all the wheels of a watch and laying them side by side in order to show how the watch keeps time. If these diagrams are to be of any use to the student they must be spiritually conceived. Otherwise they will be confusing instead of enlightening.
The Saturn Period is the first of the seven Periods, and at this early stage the Virgin Spirits take their first step towards the evolution of Consciousness and Form. By reference to diagram 7 it will be seen that the evolutionary impulse travels seven times around the seven Globes, A, B, C, D, E, F and G, the arrows showing the direction.
First, a part of the evolution is accomplished on Globe A, situated in the World of Divine Spirit, the rarest of the five Worlds which form our field of evolution. Then, gradually the evolving life is transferred to Globe B, which is located in the somewhat denser World of Life Spirit. Here another stage of evolution is passed through. In due time the evolving life is ready to enter the arena on Globe C, which is situated in and formed of the yet denser substance of the Region of Abstract Thought. After learning the lessons peculiar to that stage of existence, the life wave travels onward to Globe D, which is located in and formed of the substance of the Region of Concrete Thought. This is the densest degree of matter reached by the life wave during the Saturn Period.
From this point the life wave is carried upward again to Globe E, which is situated in the Region of Abstract Thought, as is Globe C, yet the conditions are not the same as on Globe C. This is the Involutionary stage, and the substance of the Worlds is getting denser all the time. The tendency in everything is to become denser and more solid as times goes on; also, as the path of evolution is a spiral, it will be clear that, though the same points are gone over, the conditions are never the same, but are on a higher and more advanced plane.
When the work on Globe E has been completed, the next step is taken on Globe F, which is situated in the World of Life Spirit, the same as Globe B; thence it mounts to Globe G. When the work there is done, the life wave has traveled once around all the seven Globes; once down and up through the four respective Worlds. This journey of life wave is called a Revolution, and seven Revolutions make one Period. During one Period the life wave travels seven times down and up through the four Worlds.
When the life wave has traveled its full complement of seven times around the seven Globes, completing the seven Revolutions, the first Day of Creation closes and there follows a Cosmic Night of rest and assimilation, after which the Sun Period dawns.
Like the night of sleep between two days of human life and the interval of rest between two earth lives, this Cosmic Night of rest after the completion of the Saturn Period is not a time of passive repose, but a season of preparation for the activity to be unfolded in the coming Sun Period, where man-in-the-making is to take a further dip into matter. Therefore, new Globes are necessary, the positions of which in the seven Worlds are different from those occupied by the Worlds of the Saturn Period. The providing of these new Globes, and other subjective activities, occupy the evolving spirits during the interval between Periods—the Cosmic Night. The manner of procedure is as follows:
When the life wave has left Globe A in the Saturn Period for the last tine, the Globe begins to slowly disintegrate. The forces which built it are transferred from the World of Divine Spirit (where Globe A is located during the Saturn Period) to the World of Life Spirit (where Globe A is located during the Sun Period). This is shown on diagram 8 (below).
When the life wave has left Globe B in the Saturn Period for the last time, it also commences to disintegrate, and the forces thereof, like the seed-atom of a human vehicle, are used as a nucleus for Globe B in the Sun Period, this Globe being then located in the Region of Abstract Thought.
In like manner the forces of Globe C are transferred to the Region of Concrete Thought and draw upon the substance of that Region for the material wherewith to build a new Globe C for the coming Sun Period. Globe D is similarly transmuted and placed in the Desire World. Globes E, F, and G, in order named, are analogously transferred. The result is (as reference to diagram 8 will show) that in the Sun Period all the Globes are located one step further down into denser matter than they were in the Saturn Period, so that the life wave, upon its emergence from the Cosmic Night of Rest intervening between the last activity on Globe G of the Saturn Period and the renewed activity on Globe A of the Sun Period finds a new environment, with the opportunity thus afforded for new experiences.
The life wave now circles seven times around the seven Globes during the Sun Period, traversing seven times down and up the four Worlds or Regions in which these Globes are located. It makes seven Revolutions in the Sun Period, as it did in the Saturn Period.
When the life wave leaves Globe A in the Sun Period for the last time, that Globe begins to disintegrate. Its forces are transferred to the denser Region of Abstract Thought, where they form a planet to be used during the Moon Period. In the same way, the forces of the other Globes are transferred and serve as nuclei for the Globes of the Moon Period, as shown in diagram 8, the process being exactly the same as when the Globes are removed from their locations in the Saturn Period to the positions they occupied during the Sun Period. Thus the Globes of the Moon Period are placed one step further down in matter than they were during the Sun Period, the lowest (Globe D) being situated in the Etheric Region of the Physical World.
After the interim of Cosmic Night between the Sun Period and the Moon Period, the life wave starts its course on Globe A of the latter, completing in due time its seven Revolutions, as before. Then there is another Cosmic Night, during which the Globes are again transferred one step further down, and this time the densest Globe is located in the Chemical Region of the Physical World, as reference to diagram 8 will show.
This, then, is the Earth Period and the lowest and densest Globe (Globe D) is our present Earth.
The life wave here, as usual, started on Globe A, after the Cosmic Night succeeding the Moon Period. In the present Earth Period it has circled three times around the seven globes and is now on Globe D, in its fourth Revolution.
Here on earth and in this present fourth Revolution, the greatest density of matter — the nadir of materiality — was reached a few millions years ago. The tendency henceforth will be upward into rarer substance. During the three and one-half Revolutions which remain to complete this Period, the condition of the Earth will gradually become more and more ethereal, and in the next — the Jupiter Period — Globe D will again be located in the Etheric Region, as it was in the Moon Period, the other Globes being also elevated correspondingly.
In the Venus Period they will be located in the same Worlds as were the Globes of the Sun Period. The Globes of the Vulcan Period will have the same density and be located in the same Worlds as were the Globes of the Saturn Period. This is all shown on diagram 8.
When the life wave has completed its work in the Earth Period and the Cosmic Night which follows in past, it will go through its seven Revolutions on the Globes of the Jupiter Period. Then will come the usual Cosmic Night, with its subjective activities; after which the seven Revolutions of the Venus Period; then another rest, succeeded by the last of the Periods of the present scheme of evolution — the Vulcan Period. The life wave also makes its seven Revolutions here, and at the end of the last Revolution all the Globes are dissolved and the life wave is reabsorbed by God, for a period of time equal in duration to that occupied by all the seven Periods of activity. God Himself then merges into the Absolute during the Universal Night of assimilation and preparation for another Great Day.
Other and grander evolutions will then follow, but we can deal only with the seven Periods described.
The Rosicrucian Cosmo-Conception,
Chapter 7, by Max Heindel