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The planes of existence
by Aart Jurriaanse

A survey of the three physical and four spiritual planes which make up our solar system.


Everything that average man can sensitively observe, all that he can see, feel hear, smell or taste, belongs to the physical plane. This plane therefore encompasses the four lower kingdoms of nature, that is the human, animal, vegetable and mineral realms, or all dense matter including all fluids, vapours and gases. Beyond the gaseous stage, an even more rarefied or subtle phase exists which is not normally perceivable to man and is known as the etheric world. Please note that the etheric, though insubstantial, nonetheless still belongs to the physical plane and not to the spiritual. 

Closely associated with the physical plane is the emotional or astral plane. This is the region on which the majority of human beings are as yet largely focused through their lower minds. As indicated by the name, it is the plane of emotional living of hope and fear, of sentimental or sensuous love and hate, of happiness and suffering, and above all it is the plane of glamour and illusion. Next comes the mental plane, the plane of the mind. An ever increasing number of the more developed human beings, the thinkers of the world, are becoming oriented on this level, although often still standing hesitantly with one foot on the emotional step. 

The mental plane in turn gives access to the four spiritual levels, the lowest of which is the intuitional or buddhic plane, providing the normal abode for the soul. This is consequently the objective to which the awakening personality aspires in its urge for fusion with its higher counterpart. Still higher follow successively the spiritual or atmic plane, then the Monadic plane, and finally the divine plane or plane of the Logos.

In descending order, the seven planes of our solar system therefore consist of:

Spiritual and formless planes:
1. Divine plane (the plane of the deity)
2. Monadic plane (the plane of the Monad)
3. Spiritual or atmic plane
4. Intuitional or buddhic plane (plane of the soul)

Personality and physical planes:
5. Mental plane
6. Emotional or astral plane
7. Physical plane (including the etheric plane)

These seven planes collectively constitute the cosmic physical plane, which in turn represents the lowest of the seven cosmic planes, namely: cosmic divine, cosmic Monadic, cosmic spiritual, cosmic intuitional, cosmic mental, cosmic astral and cosmic physical planes. The above may theoretically be acceptable to the student, but while the mind of the average man remains inhibited by his physical environment, he cannot yet differentiate between the various spiritual levels of our solar system, and the cosmic planes are of course something totally beyond the range of conception.


Excerpted from the book Bridges by Aart Jurriaanse, ISBN 3-929345-11-0, further info: www.bridges-publishing.com


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First published April 1999, Last modified: 15-Oct-2005