The pentagon, or five pointed star, is the symbol of man. With the point downward it signifies birth into the world by means of procreation. This pointing downward represents the foetus with its head pointing downward, the manner in which it comes into the world. The foetus is first sexless, then dual-sexed, then single-sexed, and finally drops below the circle (or womb), into the world, and becomes the cross separated from the circle. With the entrance of the germ into the plane of the circle (or womb) life develops into the human form.
|Vol. 4||FEBRUARY, 1907.||No. 5|
|Copyright, 1907, by H. W. PERCIVAL.|
IN the previous articles the history of the rounds and the racial development of humanity in our present period of evolution, the fourth round, was set forth. A human foetus is an epitome of this past.
A foetus is one of the most important, wonderful and solemn things in the physical world. Not only is its development a review of the history of the past evolution of humanity, but in its development it brings with it the powers and potentialities of the past as suggestions and possibilities of the future. The foetus is the link between the visible physical world and the invisible astral world. What is said of the creation of the world, with its forces, elements, kingdoms, and creatures, is repeated in the building of a foetus. This foetus is the world which is created, ruled over, and which will be redeemed by man, the mind, its god.
The foetus has its origin in the action of the sexes. What is usually considered an animal function for gratification of sensual pleasure, and of which hypocrisy and debasement have caused men to be ashamed, is in reality the use or abuse of the highest spiritual powers which are intended for the creation of a universe, a physical body, and if used physically for no other purposes. The abuse of these powers—entailing as they do tremendous responsibilities—is the cause of worldly sorrow, remorse, gloom, suffering, chafing, disease, ailments, pain, poverty, oppression, misfortunes and calamities, which are the payment Karma exacts for abuse in past lives and in this life, of the power of the spirit.
The Hindu account of the traditional ten avatars of Vishnu is really a history of the racial development of humanity and a prophecy of its future, which account may be understood according to the zodiac. The ten avatars of Vishnu mark the physiological development of the foetus, and are enumerated as follows: The fish avatar, Matsya; the tortoise, Kurm; the boar, Varaha; the man-lion, Nara-sinha; the dwarf, Vamuna; the hero, the Parasu-rama; the hero of Ramayana, Rama-chandra; the son of the virgin, Krishna; Sakyamuni, the enlightened, Gautama Buddha; the savior, Kalki.
The fish symbolizes the germ in the womb, “swimming” or “floating in the waters of space.” This was a purely astral condition, during a period before humanity became physical; in foetal development this is passed through in the early part of the first month. The tortoise symbolizes the period of involution, which was still astral, but which developed a body with organs so as to be able to live in the astral or in the physical, as a turtle can live in the water or on land. And as the turtle is a reptile, generated from an egg, so also were the beings of that period reproduced from egg-like forms, which they projected from themselves. In foetal development this is passed through in the second month. The boar symbolizes the period when the physical form was developed. The forms of that period were without mind, sensual, animal, and are represented by the boar on account of its tendencies; this in foetal development is passed through in the third month. The man-lion symbolizes the fourth great development of humanity. The lion represents life, and the expression of its life is desire. The mind is represented by man. So that the man-lion represents the union of mind and desire, and this union takes place in foetal development at about the fourth month. This is a critical period in the life of the foetus, because the lion of life and desire wars with the mind of man for mastery; but in the history of humanity the mind has not been conquered. The human form therefore goes on in its development. This period occupies all of the fourth month in foetal development. The “dwarf” symbolizes an epoch in the life of humanity in which the mind was undeveloped, dwarf-like, but which, although it burned dimly, impelled the animal forward in its human development. This is passed through in the fifth month. The “hero” symbolizes the warfare carried on by Rama, the man, against the animal type. While the dwarf represents the sluggish mind in the fifth period, the hero now shows that the mind prevails; all the organs of the body have been developed and the human identity established, and Rama is a hero for his having conquered in the fight. In foetal development this is passed through in the sixth month. The “hero of Ramayana,” Rama-chandra, symbolizes the complete development of the bodies of physical humanity. Rama, mind, has overcome the elemental powers, which would retard the development of the body in its human form. In foetal development this is passed through in the seventh month. The “son of the virgin” symbolizes the age when, by the use of mind, humanity was enabled to defend itself against the animals. In uterine life the body now rests from its labors and is worshipped and adored by the elemental powers. All that was said of Krishna, Jesus, or any other avatar of the same grade, is again enacted,¹ and in foetal development is passed through in the eighth month. “Sakyamuni,” the enlightened, symbolizes the period in which humanity learned the arts and sciences. In uterine life this stage is illustrated by the account of Buddha under the Bo tree, where he finished his seven years’ meditation. The Bo tree is here a figure of the umbilical cord; the foetus reposes beneath it, and is instructed in the mysteries of the world and as to its path of duty therein. In foetal development this is passed through in the ninth month. It is then born and opens its eyes in the physical world. The tenth avatar, to be “Kalki,” symbolizes the time when humanity, or an individual member of humanity, will have so perfected its body that the mind may in that incarnation complete its cycle of incarnations by becoming actually immortal. In foetal life this is symbolized at birth, when the umbilical cord is cut and the infant takes its first breath. At that moment Kalki may be said to descend for the purpose of overcoming the body, establishing its immortality and freeing it from the necessity to reincarnate. This must at some time be done in the life of one physical body, which will make the perfect number ten (10), or the circle divided by a perpendicular line, or the circle with a point in the center; then man will be immortal in reality.
Modern science has thus far been unable to decide how or when conception takes place, or why, after conception, the foetus should pass through such varied and innumerable transformations. According to the secret science of the zodiac, we are enabled to see when and how conception takes place, and how, after conception, the foetus passes through its stages of life and form, develops sex, and is born into the world as a being separate from its parent.
In the natural order of evolution, human conception takes place during copulation, in the sign of cancer (♋︎), through the breath. During this time those who thus copulate are surrounded by a sphere of breath, which sphere of breath contains within it certain entities which are the representatives of the beings and creatures of the first round; but in our evolution they also represent the first race development, the beings of which race were breaths. After conception the life of the foetus begins in the sign leo (♌︎), life, and it rapidly passes through all phases of germinal development as they were lived through in the second round, and through the seven phases of racial life in the second or life race of this our fourth round. This is completed in the second month, so that in the second month the foetus has stored up within it all the germs of life which had been developed in the first and second rounds with their root and sub-races, and which are brought out in its later life and given form and birth.
As in the perspective of a long road, the lines will seem to converge to a point and long distances are reduced to a small space, so, in tracing the history of humanity through foetal development, little time is required for the most distant periods, which were of immense duration, to be lived through again; but the perspective develops in detail as the present racial development is reached, so that a longer period of time is required to re-enact and develop recent events.
In the early history of the world and of the racial development of man the process of formation and consolidation was exceedingly slow as compared with our present conditions. It should be remembered that the entire past evolution is now passed through in review, by the monad of the foetus, in the developing of the physical body, and that the early periods of immense duration are passed through in so many seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, and months, in foetal development. The farther back we go in the history of the world the more distant and indistinct the view. So, after conception, the changes in the impregnated ovum are innumerable and lightning-like, gradually becoming slower and slower as the human form is approached, until the seventh month of foetal development is reached, when the foetus seems to rest from its labors and efforts at formation until it is born.
Beginning with the third month, the foetus commences its distinctly human evolution. Previous to the third month the form of the foetus may not be distinguished from that of a dog or other animal, as all forms of animal life are passed through; but from the third month the human form becomes more distinct. From indefinite or dual-sexed organs the foetus develops the organs of the male or of the female. This takes place in the sign virgo (♍︎), form, and indicates that the history of the third race is being lived through again. As soon as the sex is determined it indicates that the fourth race development, libra (♎︎), sex, has commenced. The remaining months are required to perfect its human form and to prepare it for birth into this world.
According to the signs of the zodiac, the human physical body is built and divided into three quaternaries. Each quaternary is composed of its four parts, representing its respective signs, and through which the principles operate. Each quaternary, or set of four, represents one of the three worlds: the cosmic, or archetypal world; the psychic, natural or procreative world; and the mundane, physical or divine world, according to its use. Through the physical body man, the mind, may operate on and come in touch with each and all of the worlds.
As the word suggests, the cosmic archetypal world contains the ideas according to which the psychic or procreative world is planned and built. In the psychic, natural or procreative world goes on the interior working of nature to reproduce and move the forces by which is reproduced the mundane, physical or divine world. The physical world is the arena or stage on which is played the tragedy-comedy or drama of the soul as it battles with the elemental forces and powers of nature through its physical body.
The first fundamental proposition of the “Secret Doctrine” ² is there commented upon under four heads, the second, third and fourth being aspects of the first and related to the three worlds.
The signs of the zodiac, parts of the body, and principles of the archetypal quaternary correspond to each other, and to the extract from the “Secret Doctrine” in the following order:
Aries (♈︎): “(1) Absoluteness; the parabrahman.” Absoluteness, the all-comprehensive, Consciousness; the head.
Taurus (♉︎): “(2) The first unmanifested logos.” Atma, the universal spirit; throat.
Gemini (♊︎): “(3) The second logos, spirit-matter.”—Buddhi, the universal soul; arms.
Cancer (♋︎): “(4) The third logos, cosmic ideation, mahat or intelligence, the universal world-soul.”—Mahat, the universal mind; chest.
All that is said of the absolute, the parabrahman may be comprehended in the sign aries (♈︎), as this sign includes all other signs. By its spherical shape, aries (♈︎), the head, symbolizes the all-comprehensive Absoluteness, Consciousness. In like manner aries (♈︎), as a part of the body, represents the head, but, as a principle, the entire physical body.
Taurus (♉︎), the neck, represents voice, sound, the word, by which all things are called into being. It is the germ which potentially contains a likeness of all that there is in the physical body, aries (♈︎), but which is unmanifested (undeveloped).
Gemini (♊︎), the arms, indicates the duality of substance as positive-negative, or the executive organs of action; also the union of the masculine and feminine germs, each of which has been elaborated and qualified through its particular body, each of the two germs being the representative of sex.
Cancer (♋︎), the breast, represents the breath, which, by its action on the blood, causes the economy of the body to be maintained. The sign signifies the contact with an ego by the fusion of the germs, from which will be produced a new physical body. The new body will contain the likeness of all things that existed in all the bodies through which it has passed from its line of descent and which have preceded its appearance.
This set of these four characteristic words may be called the archetypal quaternary, because all parts of the universe, the world or the body of man are developed according to the ideal type which each of these furnish. Therefore, the signs, as principles or parts of the body which follow, are the aspects of and are based upon the archetypal quaternary, even as the three signs which follow the sign aries (♈︎) are developments from and aspects of it.
The words which will best characterize the second set of four signs, principles and parts of the body, are life, form, sex, desire. This set may be called the natural, psychic or procreative quaternary, because each of the signs, principles or parts of the body indicated, is the working out by natural processes of the idea given in its corresponding archetypal sign. The natural or procreative quaternary as a whole is merely the analogical emanation or reflection of the archetypal quaternary.
Each one of the four signs of either the archetypal or the natural quaternary has its connection with and is related to the inner psychic man, and the spiritual man through the signs, principles and parts of the body which follow the two quaternaries.
The signs of the third quaternary are sagittary (♐︎), capricorn (♑︎), aquarius (♒︎), and pisces (♓︎). The corresponding principles are lower manas, thought; manas, individuality; buddhi, soul; atma, will. The respective parts of the body are thighs, knees, legs, feet. The natural, psychic or procreative quaternary was a development from the archetypal quaternary; but it, the natural quaternary, is not sufficient unto itself. Therefore, nature, in imitating the design which is reflected into her by the archetypal quaternary, builds and puts forth another set of four organs or parts of the body, which are used now only as organs of locomotion, but which, potentially, have the same powers as are contained in the first, archetypal quaternary. This third quaternary may be used in the lowest, physical, sense or be likened to and made use of as the divine quaternary. As applied to man in his present physical condition, it is used as the lowest physical quaternary. Thus the zodiac is represented by purely physical man as a straight line; whereas, when it is used as the divine quaternary, it is the circular zodiac or the straight line uniting with its source, in which case the powers potential in the thighs, knees, legs, and feet, are made active and transferred to the trunk of the body to unite with the parent archetypal quaternary. The circle is then downward from the head along the front of the body, in connection with the alimentary canal and the organs situated along its tract as far as the prostatic and sacral plexuses, thence upward along the spinal tract, through the terminal filament, spinal cord, the cerebellum, to the soul chambers of the inner brain, thus uniting with the original circle, or sphere, the head.
In speaking of the parts of the body, we should not infer that the parts of the body were built in sections and stuck together like the parts of a wooden doll. In the long time of the involution of the monad into matter, and in the evolution which the monad has passed and is now passing through, the forces and principles spoken of were called into use gradually as the form which we now call man slowly consolidated. The parts were not stuck together, but they were slowly evolved.
The mundane quaternary has no internal organs, as have the procreative or the archetypal quaternaries. Nature uses these organs of the lower mundane quaternary for locomotion on the earth, and also to attract man to the earth. We can see from the teaching in the “Secret Doctrine” and in Plato that originally man was a circle or sphere, but that, as he became grosser, his form passed through numerous and various changes, until it has at last taken on the present human shape. This is why the signs of the zodiac are in a circle, while the signs applied to the body of man are in a straight line. It also explains how the quaternary which should be divine falls and becomes attached below. When the highest is reversed, it becomes the lowest.
Each of the signs, aries (♈︎), taurus (♉︎), gemini (♊︎), cancer (♋︎), has its connection with and is related to the foetus through the four signs of the zodiac, principles and parts of the body, which follow the archetypal quaternary. These four signs are leo (♌︎), virgo (♍︎), libra (♎︎) and scorpio (♏︎). The principles corresponding to these signs are prana, life; linga sharira, form; sthula sharira, sex or physical body; kama, desire. The parts of the body corresponding to these principles are the heart, or solar region; the womb, or pelvic region (the female procreative organs); the place of the crotch, or sex organs; and the male procreative organs.
The foetus is acted on through the parts of the body by the principles from their respective signs in the following manner: When the germs have fused and an ego is in touch with its body-to-be, nature calls on the entire universe to aid in the building of the new world—the foetus. The great cosmic principle of the ego to reincarnate, represented by the sign aries (♈︎), acts on the corresponding principle of the individual parent of the foetus. The individual parent then acts from the sign leo (♌︎), the principle of which is prana, life, and the organ of which principle is the heart. From the heart of the mother the blood is sent to the villi, absorbed by the placenta and transmitted through the umbilical cord to the heart of the foetus.
The great cosmic principle of motion, represented by the sign taurus (♉︎), acts on the individual atma principle of the parent. Atma then acts through the sign virgo (♍︎), the principle of which is the linga-sharira, or astral body—form. The part of the body to which this belongs is the pelvic cavity, the particular organ of which is the womb. By the motion of atma through the tissue of the body the linga-sharira, or astral body, of the foetus is developed in the womb.
Buddhi, the great cosmic principle of substance, represented by the sign gemini (♊︎), acts on the individual buddhic principle of the parent. Buddhi, substance, then acts from the sign libra (♎︎), the principle of which is sthula-sharira, sex; the part of the body is the crotch, which is developed by separation or division into either the male or the female sex, as was previously determined at the moment of conception. Buddhi, acting on the skin of the body and the vaginal passages, develops sex in the foetus.
The great cosmic principle of breath, represented by the sign cancer (♋︎), acts on the individual principle of manas of the parent; manas then acts from the sign scorpio (♏︎), the principle of which is kama, or desire. This part of the body are the male sex organs.
According to the development of the rounds as distinguished from the quaternaries, the process of foetal development and the relation between cosmic principles, the mother and the foetus, are as follows:
From the all-conscious first round (♈︎) comes breath (♋︎), the breath body of the first round. Through the action of the breath (♋︎), sex (♎︎) is developed and stimulated to action; breath is the channel of our consciousness. While we are acting at present on the earth the dual action of the breath through our bodies of sex prevents us from realizing the one-ness of Consciousness. All this is symbolized by the triangle ♈︎–♋︎–♎︎. (See The Word, October 1906.) From the second round (♉︎), motion, comes life (♌︎), the life body of the second round, and life develops desire (♏︎)—Triangle ♉︎–♌︎–♏︎. The third round (♊︎), substance, is the basis of form (♍︎); the form body of the third round is the developer of thought (♐︎), and, according to form, thought is developed—Triangle ♊︎–♐︎–♍︎. Breath (♋︎), our fourth round, is the beginning and cause of sex (♎︎) and the sex bodies of our fourth round, and from within and through sex individuality is to be developed—Triangle ♋︎–♎︎–♑︎.
The great cosmic principle of Consciousness (♈︎) is reflected by the individual breath (♋︎) of the parents at their union; from this union is developed the sex body (♎︎) of the foetus—Triangle ♈︎–♋︎–♎︎. The cosmic principle of motion (♉︎) acts on the individual principle of life (♌︎) of the parent mother, the physical phase of which is the blood; and from this life blood develop the germs of desire (♏︎) in the foetus—Triangle ♉︎–♌︎–♏︎. The great cosmic principle of substance (♊︎) affects the individual principle of form (♍︎) of the mother, the organ of which is the womb, the workshop of nature, in which is formed the foetus. In its form lie the possibilities of its later thoughts (♐︎). This is symbolized by the Triangle ♊︎–♍︎–♐︎. The cosmic principle of breath (♋︎), acting through the individual sex body (♎︎) of the mother, thus forms a body through which individuality (♑︎) is to be developed, as illustrated by the Triangle ♋︎–♎︎–♑︎.
In each instance the points of the triangle show the cosmic principle; then the individual principle of the parent, and the result in the foetus.
Thus is the foetus, the universe, developed within its mother, nature, according to the principle of the rounds as they now stand in the stationary signs of the zodiac.
Without the physical body, the mind could not enter the physical world or contact physical matter. In a physical body all the principles are focussed and act together. Each acts on its own plane, but all act together on and through the physical plane. All beings below man seek entrance into the world through the physical body of man. A physical body is a necessity for the development of the mind. Without a physical body man cannot become immortal. Races beyond man wait until mankind can produce wholesome, healthy bodies before they can incarnate to assist humanity in their evolution. Although the body is the lowest of all principles, yet it is necessary to all, as each acts in and through it.
There are many purposes for which the mind uses the physical body. One is to beget another physical body, and thus furnish to the world a body, just as a physical body was furnished to the mind for its earthly work and duties. This is a duty all human beings who can produce healthy offspring owe to their kind, unless they decide to devote their lives to the good of mankind or to bend all efforts to the building of an immortal body. The mind uses the physical body to experience the pains and pleasures of the world and to learn willingly or under the pressure and discipline of karmic law the duties and obligations of life. The mind uses the physical body to operate the forces of nature as applied to the outer physical world, and to develop the arts and sciences, trades and professions, forms and customs, and social, religious, and governmental functions of our world. The mind takes up the physical body in order to overcome the elemental powers of nature represented by the impulses, passions, and desires, as they play through the physical body.
The physical body is the meeting ground of all these elemental forces. In order to contact them, the mind must have a physical body. The forces which move as anger, hatred, envy, vanity, greed, lust, pride, attack man through his physical body. These are entities on the astral plane, though man knows it not. The duty of man is to control and transmute these forces, to raise them to a higher state, and to sublimate them into his own higher body. Through the physical body the mind can create an immortal body. This can be done only in a physical body which is intact and healthy.
The foetus is not a thing of which we may speak with displeasure or contempt. It is a sacred object, a miracle, the wonder of the world. It comes from a high spiritual power. That high creative power should only be used in procreation, when man desires to fulfill his duty to the world and leave healthy offspring in his place. Any use of this power for gratification or lust is an abuse; it is the unpardonable sin.
For a human body to be conceived in which an ego is to incarnate three must cooperate—the man, the woman, and the ego for whom these two are to build a body. There are many entities other than an ego that cause copulation; they may be elementals, spooks, shells of disembodied people, astral entities of various kinds. These horrors live on the forces liberated by the act. This act is not always of their own desire, as many foolishly and ignorantly suppose. They are often the deluded victims and slaves of those creatures who prey and live upon them, their subjects, who are held in thraldom while these astral horrors enter their mental sphere and stimulate them by thoughts and pictures.
In the case of the presence of an ego, that ego projects a breath, which enters the breath sphere of the father and mother at a certain coincidence of their breaths. It is this breath that causes the conception. The creative power is a breath (♋︎); working through the physical body, it causes the seminal principle (♌︎) to precipitate (♍︎) into the respective bodies, in which it is elaborated into spermatozoa and ovum (♎︎). See how the spirit is precipitated into the world. Truly, a sacred, solemn rite. The connection having been made with the germs furnished by the father and mother, the germs unite and take life (♌︎). The bond of union is the breath, is spiritual (♋︎). It is at this point that the sex of the foetus is determined. The later development is merely a development of the idea. This breath contains the idea and destiny of the foetus.
While a breath, the ego acts from the sign cancer (♋︎) for a short period. When the impregnated ovum has surrounded itself with its layers it has taken life and is in the sign leo (♌︎). When the spinal column is developed the foetus begins to take form in virgo (♍︎). When the sex organs are developed the foetus is said to be in the sign libra (♎︎). All of this takes place in virgo (♍︎), the womb; but the womb itself is a miniature zodiac divided by the two Fallopian tubes (♋︎–♑︎), with the entrance and exit into the physical world through the mouth (♎︎) of the womb.
From the time of conception the ego is in constant touch with its developing body. It breathes over it, infuses life into it, and watches over it until the time of birth (♎︎), when it surrounds it and breathes part of itself into it. While the foetus is in the mother, the ego reaches it through the breath of the mother, which is conveyed to the foetus through the blood, so that during pre-natal life the foetus is nourished by the mother and breathes through her blood from its heart. At birth the process is changed instantly, for with the first gasp of breath its own ego makes direct connection with it through the breath.
From the very nature of this high spiritual function it is at once apparent that a misuse of the power of the spirit entails disastrous consequences on those who commit the unpardonable sin—a sin against one’s Self, the sin against the Holy Ghost. Though roaring desire may drown the voice of conscience and silence reason, karma is inexorable. Retribution comes to those who sin against the Holy Ghost. Those who commit this sin in ignorance may not suffer the mental torture inevitable to those who act with knowledge. Yet ignorance is no excuse. The moral crimes and vices of intercourse for pleasure only, of prostitution, of the prevention of conception, of abortion and of self-abuse, bring upon the actors dismal penalties. Retribution does not always come at once, but it does come. It may come to-morrow or after many lives. Here is the explanation why an innocent babe is born afflicted with some terrible venereal disease; the babe of to-day was the jolly old rake of yesterday. The apparently innocent child whose bones are eaten gradually by a lingering disease is the voluptuary of a past age. The child which dies at birth, after having endured the long suffering of pre-natal gloom, is one who prevented conception. That one who brings on miscarriage or abortion is in turn made the victim of like treatment when his time to reincarnate comes. Some egos have to prepare many a body, have to watch over it and await the day of liberation from the under world, and even see the light of day after long suffering,³ when their foetus is snatched away by apparent accident, and they are cast back to begin the work again. These are those who were abortionists in their day. The morose, gloomy, ill-tempered, discontented, surly, pessimistic, are sexual criminals born with these temperaments as the psychic garments they have woven by their past sexual misdeeds.
The inability to resist the attacks of disease and the suffering consequent upon disease, ailments and sickness is often due to the lack of vitality lost by sexual excesses and by waste in the lap of incontinence. Let him who would study the mysteries of life and the wonders of the world study the foetus as though it were himself, and it will reveal to him the cause of his existence on this earth and the secret of his own being. But let him study it in reverence.
¹ The Voice of the Silence: The Seven Portals. “Behold the mellow light that floods the Eastern sky. In signs of praise both heaven and earth unite. And from the four-fold manifested Powers a chant of love ariseth, both from the flaming Fire and flowing Water, and from sweet-smelling Earth and rushing Wind.”
² “Secret Doctrine,” Vol. I., p. 44:
(1) Absoluteness: the Parabrahman of the Vedantins or the One Reality, Sat, which is, as Hegel says, both Absolute Being and Non-Being.
(2) The First Logos: the impersonal, and, in philosophy, Unmanifested Logos, the precursor of the Manifested. This is the “First Cause,” the “Unconscious” of European Pantheists.
(3) The Second Logos: Spirit-Matter, Life; the “Spirit of the Universe,” Purusha and Prakriti.
(4) The Third Logos: Cosmic Ideation, Mahat or Intelligence, the Universal World-Soul; the Cosmic Noumenon of Matter, the basis of the intelligent operations in and of Nature.
³ Vishnu Purana, Book VI., Chap. 5:
The tender (and subtile) animal exists in the embryo, surrounded by abundant filth, floating in water, and distorted on its back, neck, and bones; enduring severe pain, even in the course of its development, as disordered by the acid, acrid, bitter, pungent and saline articles of its mother’s food; incapable of extending or contracting its limbs; reposing amidst the slime of ordure and urine; every way incommoded; unable to breathe; endowed with consciousness, and calling to memory many hundreds of previous births. Thus exists the embryo in profound affliction, bound to the world by its former works.