“”The gods and the angels”, says Iamblichus,”appear to us among peace and harmony; the bad demons, in tossing everything in confusion….As to the ordinary souls, we can perceive them more rarely, etc.”
“The human soul (the astral body) is a demon that our language may name genius”, says Apuleius. “She is an immortal god, though in a certain sense she is born at the same time as the man in whom she is. Consequently, we may say that she dies in the same way that she is born.”
“The soul is born in this world upon leaving another world (anima mundi) in which her existence precedes the one we all know (on earth). Thus, the gods who consider her proceedings in all the phases of various existences and as a whole, punish her sometimes for sins committed during an anterior life.
She dies when she separates herself from a body in which she crossed this life as in a frail bark. And this is, if I mistake not, the secret meaning of the tumulary inscription, so simple for the initiate: “to the gods manes who lived.”
But this kind of death does not annihilate the soul, it only transforms it into a lemure. Lemures are the manes or ghosts, which we know under the name of lares. When they keep away and show us a beneficient protection, we honor in them the protecting divinities of the family hearth; but, if their crimes sentence them to err, we call them larvae. They become a plague for the wicked, and the vain terror of the good.”
This language can hardly be called ambiguous, and yet, the Reincarnationists quote Apuleius in corroboration of their theory that man passes through a succession of physical human births upon this planet, until he is finally purged from the dross of his nature.
But Apuleius distinctly says that we come upon this earth from another one, where we had an existence, the recollection of which has faded away.
As the watch passes from hand to hand and room to room in a factory, one part being added here and another there, until the delicate machine is perfected, according to the design conceived in the mind of the master before the work was begun; so, according to ancient philosophy, the first divine conception of man takes shape little by little, in the several departments of the universal workshop, and the perfect human being finally appears on our scene.”
H. P. Blavatsky