Works of Laecontes greatly sought – Laecontes and his disciples and students – The
Prayer of Greeting – The purpose of beauty – Laecontes speaks (2nd Lesson) – Revealing
the purpose of beauty: revelation – The beauty of self is revealed in the beauty
of art – Beauty: the song which truth would sing – Create a life of beauty – The
seven facets of life wherein beauty is shaped – Right beliefs – What to believe:
finding truth – Right speech – Words return to bless or trouble you
1 In the regions of Sinope, beside the Tiber Sea, did Laecontes grow in skill and
wisdom; and the works of his hands were greatly sought, for those who were rich and
powerful did seek the treasures of the Master; paying out with grateful glee ever
larger and larger sums, perchance themselves to own a mighty work of art.
2 For in his art did Laecontes celebrate the joys of men and women, and children
too; revealing in the hardness and coldness of the stone, the warmth and softness
of human love and sweet communion; exposing for all to see the beauty of themselves
and the joy of happy passions.
3 And there came from the great cities of the earth many patrons which sought the
Master’s favor; offering to him an endless stream of commissions, being hopeful that
the Divine Laecontes might deign accept and commit himself to do.
4 Now there worked beside Laecontes the greatest artists upon the earth, being happy
to count themselves the disciples of so great a man; for Laecontes did make a place
of refuge where skilled and accomplished artists might live in a single community,
to live and share with each other the knowledge of their craft.
5 And there came also from out of the assembly of true believers a great many others,
being themselves the students of art and beauty; hoping to glean from the Master
the secrets of his skill, being eager to hear for themselves the depths of all his
6 Being themselves secretly commissioned by the Council of Lords to record faithfully
all things which the Master said and did; for in the quorums of the assembly did
every man and every woman see in Laecontes the coming forth of God.
7 And in the world of mortal men did Laecontes prosper, to live his life in singular
fashion, being ever anxious to reveal the beauty which he both felt and saw; speaking
to all his students the essence of all things beautiful and filled with wonder, which
beauty is made revealed in the simplest of things.
8 Now when Laecontes was old, having prospered many years, he went walking in the
school of his own making, and there in the vastness of his domain were there found
some one hundred fellow artists which had made themselves the students of the Master.
9 And seeing in their presence the Master they loved, even every student did set
aside the tools of their craft, and did gather around Laecontes to bow before him,
being themselves always respectful and filled with admiration.
10 And there spoke to the Master the chief apprentice, being herself an artist of
great renown in the making of jewelry; and she spoke to Laecontes, saying: “Greetings,
good Master: Peace and joy forever be upon you.”
11 Then did Laecontes bow before her, saying: “And to you likewise: Peace and joy
forever.” And so speaking, Laecontes went and sat upon a great stone in the center
of the green, and according to their custom, every man and every woman did gather
round about to sit at the Master’s feet.
12 And there did they quietly wait the rising of the sun, and when it was come,
to rise itself above the far horizon, then did Laecontes and the whole gathering
rise up with one voice, saying: “This is a day which God has made; I will rejoice
and be glad in it.”
13 In this fashion did the school of artists begin their day, and sitting down again
round about the Master’s feet, they began to converse with him, being anxious themselves
to hear the wisdom of his soul.
14 And there spoke to the Master a young man, saying: “Good Master, I would ask
of you a question.” And Laecontes answered him, saying: “Speak, my son, and I will
15 Receiving then the Master’s approval, the youth asked of him, saying: “It is
said, my lord, that the purpose of art is beauty; and if this be so, then what is
the purpose of this beauty which we would shape through the workings of our hands?”
16 Now hearing this, the artists of the school did prepare themselves to hear the
Master, being eager to write down such words as he might speak; and Laecontes, perceiving
the eagerness of all his students, did answer, saying:
17 “Hear then and prove yourselves most attentive, for I will make known in you
the purpose of beauty and the means by which you might create in yourselves the beauty
which gives birth to every art.
18 For in the beginning, before the dawn of mortal life, did even every man and
every woman dwell in the Paradise of God, which Paradise proved far greater in its
beauty than the mind of man can know or deep conceive.
19 Yet in your beginning did you renounce with eager hearts the glory of Heaven,
to await with sweet delight the appointed hour of your bodily birth, being hopeful
yourselves to follow in the steps of God, whereby you might become even as your Heavenly
Father and Heavenly Mother, to possess for yourselves the greater glory.
20 Thus in this mortal world do you struggle night and day to seize the greater
portion, becoming oft in the midst of trial filled with quiet despair, forgetting
who you are.
21 Thinking perhaps that you have lost your way, to make of yourselves a shadow
in a world of shadows only; not knowing or perceiving your truer nature, being yourselves
weighed down by such ugliness as you perceive in the world of mortal men.
22 Consider then the intent and purpose of all things beautiful, for in the presence
of beauty do you glimpse again your truer selves, to stand revealed in light and
glory, clothed in many wonders too great for mortal men; touching in such fleeting
moments the Heaven in your soul, reclaiming within yourselves the eternal and divine.
23 Be you, therefore, wise and deeply knowing, for the purpose of beauty is revelation,
revealing to the eyes which see, the truth which comes from God; lifting up the heart
and soul, to fill you up with wonder and delight, to lift you up with awe.
24 Thus in beauty do you look beyond the thinness of your lives, to see beyond the
shadows, to where the light most brightly shines, to feel again with tender hearts
the beauty of your former state when first in Heaven you did dwell beside the throne
25 Consider then, such arts as you do practice, to fashion with your hands the beauty
of created things, reflecting through the objects of your crafts, the beauty you
see and feel and hear and touch.
26 Being hopeful that others might likewise see and in their hearts be lifted up;
to see in themselves the beauty reflected through the many arts of man.
27 Becoming in themselves as one awakened from a long and slumbering sleep, in which
sleep they do but dream; becoming in their minds filled with the vagueness of half
remembered things of yet some other world, when first they dwelt in Heaven.
28 But in the beauty of art, do they find revealed the beauty of themselves; becoming
themselves as one inspired and ennobled before the eyes of men, to become themselves
enraptured and carried away to still some higher plane.
29 Standing forth as one awakened and revived, letting go, in the presence of beauty,
of such petty dreams as they do dream in the world of mortal life; to find themselves
made richer still by the beauty of their lives.
30 Come now and let us reason well together, for I tell you truly that it is given
in this life that every man and every woman might have abundant joy filled with jolly
laughter and rich reward; to live your life midst song and happy light.
31 Yet is it permitted that you must choose for yourselves; being appointed by God
that you alone should prove the masters of your life; to create within yourselves,
through thoughtful care, a home where every beauty might fully flourish.
32 For the life which has no beauty is a hard and burdensome thing, filling up the
mind with darkness and despair, wearing down the mind through oppressions of every
kind; for where there is no beauty there is no hope or joy; causing that the one
afflicted should prove themselves as one impoverished even in the midst of worldly
33 How then is beauty made to dwell in those who live? By what means is it brought
forth? How nurtured, how enlivened? For the life of every man and every woman is
made complex and filled with burdens, possessing in each life many and sundry facets.
34 For this you know yourselves full well: that in the owning of art is no man’s
life made beautiful, for there are many who have cluttered their life with such art
as men do make; but notwithstanding so great a prize, still are they themselves made
empty of beauty and filled with quiet despair.
35 Hear then this mystery and in your soul prove wise and truly knowing: For beauty
is the song which truth would sing, to draw you closer unto God through many revelations;
always reflecting in its depths the truth of who you are.
36 For even the whole creation does reflect the beauty which dwells in God, which
beauty we behold with aching wonder, causing that we should yearn for a beauty of
our own; for God is the creator of all you see, and if you are the children of God,
then are you made to become as creators also.
37 Create, therefore, of your very life, a beauty all your own, filled with grace
and wonder, causing that even your own children should gasp in amazement at the very
joy of it and yearn themselves to likewise do; to prove themselves in their maturity,
as the masters and creators of their own life, filled with beauty.
38 How then is there fashioned through all your life the rule of beauty, causing
that even every facet of mortal life should become itself an art filled with wonder,
being itself revealed within yourselves and within your homes, and throughout your
39 For except there be beauty in your life, how then shall you hear the song which
God would sing within your soul, to know for yourself the truth which God would speak
within the mind, to fill you up to overflowing with divine and wondrous things?
40 For beauty is the mother of dreams and visions and intuition, seducing through
the senses of the flesh the heart of every child; causing that every man and every
woman should seek the ways of beauty, perchance themselves to touch or see, hear
or feel the beauty that is God, being themselves led away from the grip of common
woe, to dress the heart with joy.
41 Consider then the facets of your life wherein beauty is shaped and fashioned,
which facets do each build upon the other, for there are these seven only, and these
seven do embrace the sum of all your life.
42 And if you will do most faithfully the things which come from God, then shall
your life be filled with beauty even in the midst of sorrow, for beauty is found
first within yourselves and not without.
43 But if you will not do the things which come from God, then are you made undone,
to become yourselves swept away by a flood of many sorrows; and notwithstanding that
you should fill up your homes with many beautiful and artful things, still will your
life appear as ugly and unbearable, for in your heart there is no beauty found.
44 Ponder then within yourselves these seven: right beliefs, right speech, right
conduct, right associations, right occupations, right expectations, and right homes;
these seven, therefore, do comprise the sum of all your life, to touch upon many
45 Let us consider well, therefore, such principles as would fill you up with joy,
to make the sum of all your life a rare and wondrous thing, graced with beauty and
46 For it is appointed of God that you alone should choose the things which you
believe; therefore, if you would believe rightly then are you become as one advantaged
in the living of your life.
47 What, therefore, is worthy of belief and quick acceptance? Only that which is
dressed in beauty, for all things which come from God are dressed in beauty round
about, causing that you should feel yourselves ennobled and enriched; becoming in
your heart as one enlightened and enraptured, and this because you have elected that
you should believe rightly and not amiss.
48 For belief is the foundation on which you would build your life, constructing
through faith or doubt the house wherein you dwell; building daily through choices
of your own a house of light or a house of darkness, a house of joy or a house of
sorrow, a house of love or a house of fear.
49 Look, therefore, with utmost care, for the world is filled with many beliefs
and diverse opinions, being themselves born of mortal men; which beliefs do speak
of wrath and hate and bitter judgment, filling the souls of those which believe with
endless guilt and shame, causing that they should prove themselves intolerant and
filled with scorn.
50 Yet are there many other beliefs which are made of fluff and emptiness together,
having in themselves no substance, or reason or direction of any kind, being intent
that they should offend no one, being made as thin and paltry doctrines which do
but seem as mist before your eyes, placing in your mind one confusion upon another,
till you are altogether made uncertain.
51 Where then is the truth found midst all these things? In what place shall you
find revealed the thing most worthy of belief and faith together?
52 Behold, I tell you truly: Look you forth with careful eye to find for yourself
the thing which is beautiful above all others, being itself come from God and established
well in reason and beauty together.
53 Having as its only goal the betterment of man and the exaltation of yourselves
whereby you might stand as one forever beside the throne of God, becoming in yourselves
even as your Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother; for in the shadow of beauty is
every truth revealed.
54 If then you would have for yourself the thing most worthy of belief, then ponder
daily the scriptures which come from God; for in the scriptures will you find the
beauty you seek; and if you will believe and do most faithfully the things contained
therein, then shall you establish well the foundations of your life, causing that
there should spring up within you a beauty far greater than you have ever known.
55 To build upon the rock of a good and sure belief, a beauty which would grow through
all your life complete, being diligent yourselves to not yield yourselves to the
doubts of those who would mock and ridicule the things which come from God.
56 For the scriptures which come from God are the guide and blueprint of all your
life, giving to your mind a map which you can trust; directing and encouraging the
energies of the self, to fill you up with a purpose far beyond yourselves.
57 Thus into your keeping would the scriptures give the understanding of many things,
causing that you should be delivered from such things as would make your life an
utter waste, making way within your soul a place where all things beautiful might
firm take root.
58 Consider also this other: For if you would know the height and breadth and depth
of beauty, to make it as your own, then add to right beliefs the rightness of your
speech; for the heart of every man and every woman is revealed in the words they
59 Speak with utmost care, therefore, words of judgment and condemnation, but speak
with graceful ease words of faith, love, hope and joy; encouraging those around you
through words made strong and true.
60 For it is with the mouth that every judgment is made to live, therefore, judge
little but love much, proving yourselves through gentle speech as one most gracious
and courteous in comportment and manners.
61 Avoid with diligence all manner of hard and hurtful speech but let your speech
be filled with gentleness and kindness and happy light, being dressed in wisdom and
poetry and song, to send them into the ethers round about, causing that kind should
cleave to kind.
62 For whatsoever you speak, even this shall return to you a hundredfold, and if
your words be hard and bitter, then shall they return to you again from out of the
very ethers, bringing as tribute to your soul an abundance of hard and bitter things.
63 But if your speech be kind and nobly wise, filled with faith and joy together,
then shall such words fly forth into the ethers round about; and when they are returned,
even these shall likewise bring as happy gifts, an increase of joy and brightness
into your soul, to fill your days with beauty.
64 For I tell you truly that the words you speak are spirit, and once sent out upon
the winds, even they shall soon flow back unto you again, to seek again within yourselves
the source which first did give them life.”
65 Such were the words which Laecontes spoke, and turning to his many disciples
he spoke to them, saying: “Come, my children and let us go to the morning meal together;
and if you prove willing, I shall speak again the things which come from God.”
66 And together did every man and every woman rise up of one accord to follow the
Master, walking soft within their souls unto the morning feast.