isis unveiled: xi (magical history)

“De Candolle, one of the most distinguished botanists of this century, sought to prove in 1825, at the same time when the waters of the lake of Morat had apparently turned into a thick blood, that the phenomenon could be easily accounted for. He attributed it to the development of myriads of those half-vegetable, half-infusory animals which he terms Oscellatoria rubescens, and which form the link between animal and vegetable organisms.

Elsewhere we give an account of the red snow which Captain Ross observed in the Arctic regions. Many memoirs have been written on the subject by the most eminent naturalists, but no two of them agree in their hypotheses. Some call it “pollen powder of a species of pine.”; others, small insects; and Professor Agardt confesses very frankly that he is at a loss to either account for the cause of such phenomena, or to explain the nature of the red substance.

The unanimous testimony of mankind is said to be an irrefutable proof of truth; and about what was ever testimony more unanimous than that for thousands of ages among civilized people as among the most barbarous, there has existed a firm and unwavering belief in magic? The latter implies a contravention of the laws of nature only in the minds of the ignorant; and if such ignorance is to be deployed in the ancient uneducated nations, why do not our civilized and highly-educated classes of fervent Christians, deplore it also in themselves?

The mysteries of the Christian religion have been no more able to stand a crucial test than biblical miracles. Magic alone, in the true sense of the word, affords a clew to the wonders of Aaron’s rod, and the feats of the magi of Pharaoh, who opposed Moses; and it does that without either impairing the general truthfulness of the authors of the Exodus, or claiming more for the prophet of Israel than for others, or allowing the possibility of a single instance in which a “miracle” can happen in contravention of the laws of nature.

Out of many “miracles”, we may select for our illustration that of the “river turned into blood.” The text says: “Take thy rod and stretch out thine hand (with the rod in it) upon the waters, streams, etc. …that they may become blood.”

We do not hesitate to say that we have seen the same thing repeatedly done on a small scale, the experiment not having been applied to a river in these cases.”

H. P. Blavatsky

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