A Green Book with Gold Stamping   1 comment

One of the good things about working for a library is that people donate their old book collections to the library all the time. 99 percent of such donations are considered junk by the librarians who evaluate them. For a book to join a library collection it must pass certain high standards.  For one thing, it has to be in excellent condition–like new, almost unread. Secondly, it has to be in the collection already. We don’t usually add things that we don’t have already–adding a duplicate title costs very little in processing costs.  Cataloging a new title means the book cost us about $20 just to put it in the collection.  Thirdly, it has to be in demand.  People are generous with their book donations–they generate thousands of items per library per year.  A few of them get into the collection in spite of all the obstacles.

The rest of them are given to the Friends of the Library who put them into a book sale near the front door.  The money the Friends raise from this neverending book sale helps the library purchase things for which we have no regular budget. 

Sometimes (very rarely and usually only when someone dies and their books all get donated to their library) we get truly excellent things that have no place in a modern public library collection.  These generally turn into wonderful bargains for the people who haunt library book sales. Those are the things I look for.

Three weeks ago, my library inherited this august and ancient tome. Actually, it’s not so ancient. It fooled me. I looked on what I thought was the back of the title page and it said: Copyright 1927 and 1940. Rats! I didn’t get the 1927 edition, but still, 1940 isn’t bad from the standpoint of 2010. Then when I got it home, I looked more carefully and found the page where it said: SEVENTEENTH PRINTING  MARCH 1971. Dang! The book is only 39 years old. Still, I think it is probably a good copy of what the original looked like back in 1927.

The library isn’t going to want such a book, but I’m very happy to give the Friends $1 for it. Now it’s mine. Let’s look at it more closely and see what the message of the stars is.

The

Message of the Stars

by

Max Heindel

and

Augusta Foss Heindel

The Rosicrucian Emblem of Esoteric Christianity

AN ESOTERIC EXPOSITION OF

NATAL AND MEDICAL ASTROLOGY

EXPLAINING THE ARTS OF

READING THE HOROSCOPE AND DIAGNOSING

DISEASE

_____

FOURTEENTH EDITION

The Rosicrucian Fellowshp

INTERNATIONAL HEADQUARTERS

MOUNT ECCLESIA, OCEANSIDE, CALIFORNIA, U.S.A.

_____

ENGLAND

L. N. Fowler & Co. Ltd. 29 Ludgate Hill

London, E.C. 4

Wow!  They just don’t make title pages like that any more.  And the book is also amazing. It’s 728 pages long, and then there is a 12 page catalog of other books that Heindel wrote. Did the American Rosicrucians really get their books printed for them in England? Apparently so. 

It turns out that Max Heindel is the guy who founded the secret society of Rosicrucians in the United States. He did this in 1909!  Like Mohammed and Joseph Smith, it seems that an angel, or at least a Higher Being, came to him and instructed him in what to do. You can read all about it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Max_Heindel. He was born in 1865 and died in 1919. That’s very odd because the earliest edition of this book is 1927. It would seem that Augusta Foss Heindel is the true power behind these revelations.  In any case it would appear that the whole book is a message from beyond the grave. 

Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, and I was a young man, the Rosicrucians used to advertise for converts in the back pages of the science fiction magazines. Those ads promised you the secrets of the universe if you’d simply join their society. I answered one once, and got some introductory literature, but it all seemed just a little too flaky for me. I never followed up and became a full-fledged Rosicrucian. A typical ad to lure you into the organization might look like this:

Well, I never went down that path, and I’m not going down it now, but I may browse through this book. Modern books of astrology aren’t anywhere near this complete. 

Is Astrology a form of Magic? Some people would say it is. Others might claim it is a science. Certainly Heindel would have made that claim. He wrote another books called SIMPLIFIED SCIENTIFIC ASTROLOGY.

I have always thought of myself as something of a wizard. I have made a fairly detailed study of the western occult tradition–not enough to be called an Occultist–just an educated Layman.  I’m not a great wizard, no Gandalf nor Merlin nor even Harry Potter–just a hedge wizard, always a bit surprised when my own magic works. (Buy me a drink sometime, and ask me about the time I magically summoned a bus.) The world is full of strange books, and during my life, a few of those grimoires have found their way to me. How much more might I have found or learned if I had seriously pursued such matters! Yet, I am not one to deny the existence of Magic. It’s all around us–depending on how you define Magic, of course. Keep your eyes open and maybe some magic will come your way also.

end

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Posted June 25, 2010 by atroll in Uncategorized

One response to “A Green Book with Gold Stamping

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  1. Very nice…I love finding really exotic and unusual tomes in my foraging through book stores….one thing I miss about when I lived in Seattle was the absolute plethora of used book stores I could browse through every weekend! Albuquerque is just not quite up to snuff in this regard. But the important thing! Did you ake your sanity check, and did you find that this improved your Mythos Lore at all?!?!? 😉

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