This question of Professor Skridlov was torn from him as from the depths of his being, when Father Giovanni had said that, before counting on really coming under the effects and influences of the higher forces, it was absolutely necessary to have a soul, which it was possible to acquire only through voluntary and involuntary experiencings and information intentionally learned about real events which had taken place in the past. He convincingly added that this in its turn was possible almost exclusively in youth, when the definite data received from Great Nature are not yet spent on unnecessary, fantastic aims, which appear to be good owing only to the abnormally established conditions of the life of people.
At these words Professor Skridlov sighed deeply and exclaimed in despair: ‘What, then, can we do; how can we live on?’
In answer to this exclamation of Skridlov, Father Giovanni, having remained silent for a moment, expressed those remarkable thoughts which I consider it necessary to reproduce, in so far as possible, word for word.
I shall place them, as relating to the question of the soul, that is, the third independently formed part of the common presence of a man, in the chapter entitled ‘The divine body of man, and its needs and possible manifestations according to law’, but only in the third series of my writings, as complementary to two chapters of the same series which I have already decided and promised to devote—one to the words of the venerable Persian dervish concerning the body, that is, the first independently formed part in the common presence of a man, and the other to the elucidations of the old ez-ezounavouran concerning the second independently formed part of a man, namely, his spirit.
During our stay in this monastery, besides the talks with Father Giovanni, we had frequent conversation with other adepts of the brotherhood with whom we had also become friends, having made their acquaintance through Father Giovanni, who had taken us under his paternal protection.