“On the other hand, the philosophers who explained the “fall into generation” in their own way, viewed spirit as something wholly distinct from the soul. They allowed its presence in the astral capsule only so far as the spiritual emanations or rays of the “shining one” were concerned.
Man and soul had to conquer their immortality by ascending toward the unity with which, if successful, they were finally linked, and into which they were absorbed, so to say. The individualization of man after death depended on the spirit, not on his soul and body.
Although the word “personality”, in the sense in which it is usually understood, is an absurdity, if applied literally to our immortal essence, still the latter is a distinct entity, immortal and eternal per se; and, as in the case of criminals beyond redemption, when the shining thread which links the spirit to the soul, from the moment of the birth of a child, is violently snapped, and the disembodied entity is left to share the fate of the lower animals, to gradually dissolve into ether, and have its individuality annihilated – even then the spirit remains a distinct being.
It becomes planetary spirit, an angel; for the gods of the Pagan or the archangels of the Christian, the direct emanations of the First Cause, notwithstanding the hazardous statement of Swedenborg, never were or will be men, on our planet, at least.
This specialization has been in all ages the stumbling-block of metaphysicians. The whole esotericism of the Buddhistical philosophy is based on this mysterious teaching, understood by so few persons, and so totally misrepresented by many of the most learned scholars. Even metaphysicians are too inclined to confound the effect with the cause.
A person may have won his immortal life, and remain the same inner-self he was on earth, throughout eternity; but this does not imply necessarily that he must either remain the Mr. Smith or Brown he was on earth, or lose his individuality.
Therefore, the astral soul and terrestrial body of man may, in the dark Hereafter, be absorbed into the cosmical ocean of sublimated elements, and cease to feel his ego, if this ego did not deserve to soar higher; and the divine spirit still remain an unchanged entity, though this terrestrial experience of his emanations may be totally obliterated at the instant of separation from the unworthy vehicle.”
H. P. Blavatsky