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Within the Temple of Isis
by Belle M. Wagner
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He began to prepare for retiring, but he could not calm himself—a restlessness took possession of him that he could not quell; he walked the floor, tried to read, and resorted to many ways to restore his tranquillity, but all in vain.

"I must see my Nu-nah once more before I can sleep," and, hurriedly readjusting the clothing he had removed, he repaired to the Princess' private room. A gentle knock brought the attendant to the door.

"Is the Princess quiet and sleeping," he inquired in a whisper.

"No," answered the servant. "She is awake and feeling well, and just now remarked, that if she thought you were not sleeping she would have you called for she had something she wished to tell you."

His presence was at once made known to the Princess, and, with a low cry of delight, she called him to her side. A signal sent the attendant from the room, when the Princess began, "My Rathunor, my beloved husband, I am so glad you came. I have something to tell you that I might forget before morning. To-night, when we came within the sound of the music in the Temple, I felt as if I left my body and you, and by some unknown power was drawn into the Sacred Sanctuary. I saw the High Priest, the lovely Mother Priestess, the Vestals, the choir and musicians, all earnestly engaged in some holy ceremony. The music, the heavenly spiritual influence of the atmosphere, the exquisite fragrance of incense and perfumes, with the purity reflected by the Vestal attendants, so enraptured and enthralled me that the thought that I would ever have to leave its sacred boundaries caused me to lose consciousness and, when I awoke, you were bending over me."

Seeing a strange look in Rathunor's eyes and interpreting it to mean jealousy, she continued, "but that was not all, my Rathunor; you were there, too, for awhile. I tried to keep you, but could not—something drew you away from me and I, for an instant, suffered the same pangs that are torturing your heart now. I thought you would rather go than stay, and a feeling of jealousy entered my heart, but the strange fascination of the place was more to me at that instant than you, my Rathunor, so I longed to stay but could not. I have been trying to think what it all means. You must help me for already I feel the memory of the event passing away."

She ceased speaking, and in a few moments was fast asleep. The Prince kissed the hand he held, then gently laid it by her side and quietly left the room fully conscious that the mystery had been partially revealed, and that now the Princess would sleep for the rest of the night. After returning to his rooms he again flung himself into an easy chair determined to seriously think and arrive, that night, at some immediate steps to take his Nu-nah from the excitement she had been subjected to for so long, so that a recurrence of the sad event might not be repeated. Before another Sun arose the Prince had decided upon his future course. "I will take Nu-nah away, ostensibly on a long tour of the country for pleasure. Aye, for pleasure, but not the kind we have submitted to since our marriage."

The next morning, as soon as the Princess could see him, he requested her presence at once. He met her at the door and with a loving inquiry as to her health, led her to an easy chair beside the open window where the rays of the morning Sun could fall upon her as they penetrated the delicate lace which hung at the window. Drawing a chair to her side he began to unfold his plans, at the same time watching every motion and expression of the face to see what effect they would have upon her. She did not betray her thoughts until he said his object was not so much for travel as to retire to some quiet, pleasant nook, where they could be excluded from the world, and those they knew, for awhile, and instead of spending their time in the superficial pleasures of the world they could enjoy each other's society and learn something about the invisible mysteries that surrounded them.

When the motives of his plans were mentioned a perceptible change flashed across her countenance and a light appeared in her eyes that he had not seen for some time and, by the time he had finished, her whole face was beaming with an inward delight, that urged the Prince to further reveal the plans that he had laid during his midnight reasonings. The Princess raised not a single exception to his schemes but, on the contrary, entered into them with a zest that surprised even the Prince.

"O, to be alone, Rathunor, where we could think and study that which we choose has been the longing of my very soul these many weeks; can not we go at once, to-day if possible." She felt she could not wait the necessary time for the preparations to be made.

There was a duty toward their friends that must be fulfilled. The devoted attentions that had been showered upon them for so long must not be ignored. So, it was decided to give a farewell reception, before taking their departure for an indefinite stay in strange lands.

Accordingly invitations were issued to a grand state occasion, when the Prince and Princess would bid their friends and associates Farewell. Ah! farewell. Little did those who were of that brilliant assembly dream, as they clasped the hands of the Princess and Prince in cordial and sincere good-by, that it was indeed a Farewell to all. Neither did they conceive for a moment what those Farewells meant to the Princess and Prince. It was hard for them to conceal their happiness as every minute of time brought their departure nearer, and what their guests took for the happiness of their presence, was really induced by the thoughts of the future.

They were soon off and we can only follow them in thought for a time. Let those thoughts be kind, for, knowing thoughts are potent, send them out lovingly toward the awakening mind of Princess Nu-nah.



CHAPTER XII.

THE RETURN TO A NEW LIFE.

Several years have elapsed since we bade our Prince and Princess farewell. Only at long intervals had they communicated with their friends. The outer world had almost forgotten them, but not so with the Hierophant and the Priestess of the Temple. Daily, had their prayers gone in behalf of their souls' welfare. Although not in communication with them in body they were in spirit, and from this source they knew all was well. The High Priest, in his astral visits, could see the growing power of the soul over the slowly-evolving brain of the Princess, and with the electric soul-force, the great nourisher and renewer of life, though unconscious to him, the rounding out was fast nearing completion of the soul's mastery over the brain and body of Nu-nah.

They had settled in distant lands, near a little country village that lay just at the foot of the mountains. It was made up of the simple peasantry, where life was free from cant, suspicions, criticism and morbid curiosity. Here they could live and follow the bent of their minds, undisturbed and unobserved if they so wished. They kept their identity unknown yet the villagers knew from the Princess' delicate beauty of form and features she belonged to some noble family and station in life, but her kind, thoughtful bearing towards them won their love and esteem at once, and equally did they esteem the Prince for he was ever lavish with his money and attention to those who appealed to him for assistance. The mountains soon became their favorite resort. Long walks were taken daily, and rests made in the quiet nooks on the mountain side. One place particularly, became a very dear retreat to them, for never did they stop there but that some inspirations were born. It was here that Nu-nah took her first lesson from Rathunor; it was in this sacred spot that Rathunor gently but cautiously revealed to her the Initiatory Rites of the Temple that had been performed over her unconscious body. This excited an intense curiosity, if not deep interest, in Nu-nah's mind. She began to question and think and, as she thought, there came a vague, glimmering memory of the past, and when Rathunor would inquire the cause of her almost unconscious moods, she would raise her hand to silence his voice, and whisper, "I am dreaming—O, something so grand, so solemn, so sacred haunts my mind; just wait and it will all come by and by," then her dark eyes seemed to grow larger and larger and to burn with a concentrated fire.

The Prince's delight knew no bounds as these expressions led him to believe they sprang from deep desires and interests, so the time seemed to shorten for the day to come when their whole time and attention would be turned to the study of Nature's mysteries and the secrets of life be revealed to them, thus satisfying that inward longing for the realities of life. Also, he knew, the new love that had been born in Nu-nah's heart for him was more than that love that the external only can know. Its depths he could not fathom nor its source pursue, so he was content to wait that promised time, predicted by the Astrologer, that Nu-nah would lead, guide and teach him these spiritual truths and reveal to his already awakening soul the laws of the spirit.

Now, a new joy was revealed to the Prince when the Princess made him aware that a new soul had been entrusted to their tender care and keeping. The thoughts of maternity filled her heart with bliss. Blessed privilege, to bring to this plane of existence a soul awaiting incarnation in human form, to live, grow and experience on this planet the last grand objective existence that the soul can know. What care, what pleasure would she take in training that little soul to know its God and the mysteries of life and in maturity stand forth to teach mankind Wisdom and Truth.

The pleasure in preparing for its advent made days pass as minutes. Time, borne on the wings of love, passed quickly. Her soul had gained that control over the mind that it was full with pure, holy and spiritual thoughts. Her mind could not get beyond her husband and the young soul that had been transmitted to her keeping. The divine joy of love was singing in her soul. Rathunor left her alone in her happiness, knowing that in her condition any great effort on his part to draw her mind—thoughts into new channels might lead to dire results.

At last the Natalday arrived. The magnetic, as well as the physical, period of gestation being completed, to them a son was born. Never was there a human soul greeted with greater love and welcome than this one. Not only was it the offspring of the physical union, but that of the souls. Welcome, thrice welcome, to the children born of such love. The physical condition of the Princess was very critical for several days. The Prince's grief and anxiety was almost unbearable; neither sleep nor food took a moment of his time during her severe illness, and often did he think that again Nu-nah's soul would take its flight and wend its way to the realms above.

The eighth day after confinement was one of stupor and unconsciousness. Not a moment passed unheeded. It was near midnight when, the attendants having retired for a short rest, and Rathunor sat alone by her bedside, her eyes suddenly opened and bent their gaze upon him. Beautiful, calm, divine Nu-nah, her wonderful eyes shone with a surprising brilliancy and they were so riveted upon him that he dare not move, much less speak. The minutes that intervened between her waking and speaking seemed as an eternity to Rathunor.

"My darling husband, are you beside me—are you where I can speak to you, and are we alone?"

Only by a gentle pressure of the hand could he respond, and, gently laying his right hand upon her brow, he assured her by this act of his presence. She began speaking—her voice was low, yet clear and distinct, "My Rathunor, my true-soul companion, I have returned with the knowledge I now impart to you. While you so patiently and tenderly watched beside my frail and almost lifeless body, my soul was away gaining knowledge and experience in the soul-world. There I learned who I am and my relation to you. Do you know, O my Rathunor, that our souls sustain that divine relation to each other that makes us immortal, because of being complete? The whole, the two rays of the Divine Ego, are joined and blended as one in our union. Can you hear me further?"

The agitation of his grief began to assuage and he could now listen calmly and without emotion to her words.

"Yes, go on. What you have already said has been indelibly burned upon my mind and soul. Let me hear all you have to impart."

"Know you that this body was Nu-nah's and this soul that of Sarthia's?"

It was here that only by a mighty effort of his will was he able to keep in abeyance the emotions of his heart, but the superior and God-like power of an invisible Presence sustained him. The Princess took no heed of his silence and continued her revelations.

"Do you know that on the night of the full Moon, the solemn and sacred Rites performed over the unconscious bodies of Sarthia and Nu-nah in the Sacred Sanctuary of the Temple of Isis, our souls were transferred by the magical power of the High Priest and the invisible assistants? Nu-nah's soul was polarized in Sarthia's physical temple and that of Sarthia's in this of mine. Both were prostrated, even to dissolution by the malefic influence of planetary arcs, and this method was resorted to, that both our lives might be spared to round out our necessary physical existence while yet in these bodies, and also for your sake was this undertaken by our Holy Father that you might have that love which you so much craved and the longings of your soul might be satisfied with the knowledge it thirsted for. This will explain to you the great change observed at times in your Nu-nah, and the unnatural, dreamy moods that possessed me sometimes. The brain was slow to respond to the wonderfully developed soul of Sarthia and it was at those times that the soul gained the supremacy, that the greatest change would manifest. You now have the true devoted love of your soul companion and the lovely form of Nu-nah for your wife. My Rathunor, are you satisfied? If a pang of disappointment cross your heart, our darling child here may blot that out as he grows and learns our mystic lore and become also a soul companion of his fathers in climbing the ladder to higher wisdom and spheres than ours."

The Prince could not speak. He sank on his knees beside the bed and buried his face in her bosom. Here silence was more profound and spoke deeper wisdom and contentment than ever words could do; how long he remained in this humble attitude and poured forth his gratefulness in prayer he knew not; but when he arose the Princess was sleeping quietly, the breathing, though feeble, was deeper and more even. He gently crossed her hands upon her bosom, adjusted the clothing carefully and left her side, full of a new hope he had had for many days. Life again appeared in all its glory, not a shadow appeared upon its horizon; weariness and anxiety forsook him and he went about as if walking on air, but not a word escaped his lips—nor an act betrayed his new-born joy.

When the nurses returned they at once remarked the change in the Princess. They, too, became hopeful and assured the husband that his wife would soon be well. The Princess recovered rapidly, and it was not long before her gentle presence and noble influence shed its effulgence in the home as she moved about it.

As soon as Rathunor could spare the time from Nu-nah's side he sent the Natal hour of his first-born to the Astrologer Priest. Anxiously did he await the reading of the stars and what they indicated for his child. The calculations were made, the judgment submitted in writing, but "Shall I transmit them to the Prince and Princess, can they yet receive and philosophically accept the revelations therein made?"

He left the study-room and repaired to the apartments of the High Priest to seek advice and instructions. Then, by the exercise of his potent will, he made the necessary observations to see if it were wise to convey the knowledge of the predictions to his children, Nu-nah and Rathunor.

"Not yet will we send the reading. Our Nu-nah has not sufficiently recovered to bear any unpleasant news."

Rathunor became impatient and thought, at times, he would write again—the letter must have been lost—but something withheld him. At last strange forebodings haunted him. He knew too well the promptness of the Astrologer Priest; there must be something that could not be revealed to Nu-nah. He thought he was strong enough to bear resignedly all that might come, but when it did come all his forebodings had not prepared him to receive it. It was only a letter—no calculations—no reading, as indicated by the stars, was in it. The letter had been dictated by the Priest and transcribed by the scribe Hermo, and read thus:

"Our darling children, Rathunor and Nu-nah, bear bravely the news I now impart to you. Your first born, the offspring of true inspiration and soul-love, can not remain with you long in the physical form. The stars deny a prolonged life, and my interior knowledge of the planetary influence, also tells me his life upon our Earth's plane will be of short duration. His already matured soul does not need much of Earth's experience to round out its objective existence, before entering the true life in the spiritual realm; there it will remain, my dear children, ever beckoning you on, and contributing to you that energy that will ever spur you to greater effort to realize while yet in the physical form Immortal Life. Tend it carefully, but when the Great Powers that Be summon its soul to go, do not try to hold it here, but add the strength of your united prayers to its flight and bid it depart to its home in the spiritual realms above. God bless and give you the strength, my children, is the prayer of your devoted Father. Amen! Amen!"

The strength of spiritual force that seemed to accompany the letter and his loving advice imparted courage to their hearts, and instead of giving way to grief, began to philosophically reason and console themselves that God's ways were wiser than man's.

Not many months did their lovely spiritual child remain with them until its soul took its flight to realms beyond, where truly it became as a beacon-light to the souls of its parents. Its departure left the Prince and Princess sad and lonely for a time and their struggle to reconciliation was great—but this was of the heart and not of the soul. Time healed the external wound and the interior vacancy was filled by study, investigation and the development to external consciousness of the knowledge within.

Again, they became restless and plans were laid to leave their happy home near the mountains, and the devoted friends they had made among the villagers who were sorry to part with them and, as memento to their honest, noble friendship, they distributed their household and personal effects among them. They revealed to no one where they were going. They disappeared as mysteriously as they came, but where? Only one place on Earth could tempt them to leave that sacred home, where such extreme joy and sorrow were known, and that was the former home of the soul of Nu-nah, The Temple of Isis. Nu-nah was to enter as an aspirant to a Priestess, and Rathunor as a Priest King.

The Return to a New Life, was hailed with joyful welcomes from all of the Attendants of the Temple. Rathunor and Nu-nah soon passed the ceremonial Rites of the Temple and none were more faithful in their efforts and studies than these new-born children—the especial care of the High Priest and the Priestess.

We leave them here, wishing them the progress, the happiness and that Divine Peace and Understanding that comes to all Perfected Souls. God be with them.



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THE END

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