“The “coats of skin”, mentioned in the third chapter of Genesis as given to Adam and Eve, are explained by certain ancient philosophers to mean the fleshy bodies with which, in the progress of the cycles, the progenitors of the race became clothed.
They maintained that the god-like physical form became grosser and grosser, until the bottom of what may be termed the last spiritual cycle was reached, and mankind entered upon the ascending arc of the first human cycle.
Then began an uninterrupted series of cycles or yugas; the precise number of years of which each of them consisted, remaining an inviolable mystery within the precincts of the sanctuaries and disclosed only to the initiates.
As soon as humanity entered upon a new one, the stone age, with which the preceding cycle had closed, began to gradually merge into the following and next higher age. With each successive age, or epoch, men grew more refined, until the acme of perfection possible in that particular cycle had been reached.
Then the receding wave of time carried back with it the vestiges of human, social, and intellectual progress.
Cycle succeeded cycle, by imperceptible transitions; highly-civilized flourishing nations, waxed in power, attained the climax of development, waned, and became extinct; and mankind, when the end of the lower cyclic arc was reached, was replunged into barbarism as at the start.
Kingdoms have crumbled and nation succeeded nation from the beginning until our day, the races alternately mounting to the highest and descending to the lowest points of development.
Draper observes that there is no reason to suppose that any one cycle applied to the whole human race. On the contrary, while man in one portion of the planet was in a condition of retrogression, in another he might be progressing in enlightenment and civilization.
How analogous this theory is to the law of planetary motion, which causes the individual orbs to rotate on their axes; the several systems to move around their respective suns; and the whole stellar host to follow a common path around a common centre!
Life and death, light and darkness, day and night on the planet, as it turns about its axis and traverses the zodiacal circle representing the lesser and the greater cycles. Remember the Hermetic axiom – “As above, so below; as in heaven, so on earth.””
H. P. Blavatsky