PARADISE: The First Path to Freedom

Someone once asked the Pathwork® Guide why life has to be so hard. In fact, according to the Guide, another way was tried. It was an easier way, that took us by way of Paradise. And yet, because we struggle against having to obey, we failed.

Part One | Another Way Was Tried

After the Fall, God wanted to give us the opportunity to make our way back to the divine light as quickly as possible. To this end, God created a spiritual plane called Paradise. Here, the first arrivals to ascend from the higher depths of Hell—those who had worked their way up through stages of self-improvement while in Hell—would find a temporary home.

We may know of Paradise from the biblical story of creation, but we may not realize it was a spiritual plane and not an earthly one. For at that time, Earth had not yet come into existence.

Living in Paradise

The first spiritual being—again, people weren’t yet a thing—to work his way up to Paradise was the one called Adam in the Bible. Before the Fall, Adam had been a high-ranking prince in Heaven, sitting just below the level of the archangels, as pecking orders go. Adam had not been swayed by Lucifer to turn his back on Christ as the King and to support Lucifer in his efforts to claim the throne. In fact, Adam wouldn’t hear of it.

Adam instructed all spirits in his service to make sure Lucifer never darkened his door again. On this Adam was clear and firm. He barred the door to Lucifer and warned all under his direction to do the same. But Lucifer was a charmer, and a persistent one at that. Using abundantly cunning means, Lucifer went a roundabout way to reach his goal.

Over time, Lucifer managed to win over a steadily increasing number of supporters, many of whom were Adam’s subordinates. Some of these higher ranking spirits then went to their prince, Adam, and eventually persuaded him to reconsider. And this fickleness—this wavering—would be Adam’s downfall. For even though his allegiance was steadfast at first, Adam’s loyalty to his King was later swayed by how others felt.

Lucifer was a charmer, and a persistent one at that.

When the Fall happened, it was swift and irreversible. And all who were not firm in their support for Christ as their king were swept into darkness. And so it was that Adam, as well as his twin soul, Eve—who was in the same ambivalent boat as Adam—were plunged into Hell.

Since Adam was one of the spiritual beings who fell the least, he was the first who managed to work his way back up through the layers of darkness into the newly created limbo sphere of Paradise. Shortly after, Eve joined him there.

Just before they arrived, loyal servants of God said to Adam, “God, in his abundant compassion, has created a Path to Freedom for you. But you will once again need to adhere to the Law of Obedience. In other words, you must show that you are able to obey. If you can use this opportunity wisely, all those who follow you shall be able to liberate themselves from darkness and leave the higher depths of Hell.”

And so it came to pass that Adam and Eve lived for a long time in Paradise, along with all the other spiritual beings who had also lightly burdened themselves. But this was not their final destination. Living in Paradise was only a test.

Paradise Was an Easy Test

Paradise was an incredibly beautiful spiritual world filled with marvelous gardens and magnificent flowers. There were also houses of every size and style imaginable. But there was one very important thing to note: Paradise had precisely defined boundaries, and these borders had been clearly marked. Each new inhabitant was carefully instructed to live and work within these boundaries.

While Paradise was an admittedly grand place, it lacked the ethereal quality of the inhabitant’s original home in Heaven. But the bigger problem was that the occupant’s no longer possessed their former creativity. For due to their disobedience and subsequent Fall from Heaven, their inner harmony had been disrupted. They were no longer one with God within.

A darkness had spread throughout their souls and spiritual bodies, covering over the divine spark through which God had brought each of them into everlasting life. Their fall had cast a shadow on their own inner divine light, and they could blame no one but themselves for this.

It was for this reason that the beings living in Paradise had lost their sense of their divine consciousness. They weren’t really sure where they came from and they didn’t understand what they had done wrong. All they knew was that they had been banished from their original home. That a king had come and given them the terrible news: They could no longer remain in his kingdom. Although everything else had slipped from their memory, the King’s words, as they were forced to leave, still echoed inside them. As for Adam and Eve, they even forgot they had once belonged to a princely family in God’s world.

Due to their disobedience and subsequent Fall from heaven, their inner harmony had been disrupted.

Back in their original home, everyone could clearly see the spiritual beings who were guiding and helping them. But now, in Paradise, with their whole nature dulled and dimmed, such helpers were no longer visible to the fallen spirits. Nonetheless, spiritual guidance was always close by.

The residents of Paradise, then, had lost their ethereal quality and become coarser. Gone was their purity and creativity. But not all was lost. They could still reflect on their situation and their role in creating it, and they never lost their free will. They always retained the power to make better decisions.

Being the first to arrive, Adam was the leader of Paradise, so it was his job to maintain order. There were laws—it was clear what was allowed and what was not—and everyone was expected to follow them. And although Adam had been stripped of his former radiance, he did retain certain psychic abilities. So heavenly spirits were inspiring him about how to be a good leader.

The main law everyone was instructed to follow was to not step cross the boundary that God had set, no matter how attractive the distant territory appeared to be. “You can look all you want, but don’t go over there. Be content with the glory you have. Look for joy in the wonderful work you have the privilege to do. Find satisfaction with your present life.”

No one lacked for anything. Spiritual food was plentiful and this was Paradise, for heaven’s sake. How hard could it be to live in happiness and contentment, even if there was a limit to the vastness at hand?

Discontent Was Growing. Even in Paradise.

Of course at first, everyone arriving into Paradise was beyond thrilled. All spiritual beings, now relieved from perpetual darkness, were happy to make any promise God might wish. But then, over time, surrounded by only beauty and abundance, many lost their respect for it. They began to take it all for granted.

Keep in mind, this vast throng of spirits still had their free will, and many were itching to exercise it. They were each, after all, their own master, and their only two superiors were Adam and Eve. Sure, they had plenty of freedom, but no one was giving them constant reminders about what they could or couldn’t do. And so they became arrogant and over-confident.

Due to their complete independence and lack of surveillance, they started to think they’d been forgotten. But that was exactly the test they had to pass! For if an angel of God had been forever wagging a finger at them and saying, “You know Heaven will be lost to you if you don’t do this, or if you fail to do that; you know you need to obey…” it wouldn’t have been much of a test. And surely then they wouldn’t have forgotten there were certain things they weren’t allowed to do. But no one lifted a finger to steer them right. That was their job. And no one told them that this was all a big test.

Spirits still had their free will, and many were itching to exercise it.

Immeasurable periods of time went by. And since the growing population of Paradise had lost its shiny luster, thoughts of discontent arose. There was jealousy and greed, strife and discontent. Soon some beings wanted to oust others, as they were unable to get along. One by one, laws were broken, and Adam was unable to ensure harmony.

And what did God do at that point? Nothing. Everyone had been told what was allowed and what was not. That hadn’t changed. Adam and Eve stepped in from time to time to let the guilty ones know when they’d stepped out of line, but even they lost interest and eventually stopped trying to intervene. Meanwhile, God was paying attention and waiting to see if the two leaders, Adam and Eve, would themselves break his laws and commandments.

As all this was unfolding, the cruel legions from Lucifer’s ranks were far from idle. Because the feelings of hatred, envy, greed and spite that were percolating throughout Paradise prepared the ground for dark forces to also get in. For although Lucifer had been plunged down into the lowest depths of Hell, he could seek out anyone who’d been cast out of Heaven with him. And so began the second Fall.

The Second Fall

Working behind the scenes, Lucifer began sending out his sinister agents to lure the inhabitants of Paradise into dangerous territory. They couldn’t see these dark spirits any better than they could see the divine angels of light, who were continuing to encourage them to use their will in the direction of goodness. But by nurturing their base feelings of discontent, Lucifer tempted them to follow their resistance and rebelliousness. To be fair, with their knowledge of their past blotted out, it was for them easy to stray from the truth of who they really were.

Again, if it had been otherwise, it wouldn’t have been a real test. Had all the fallen spirits clearly recalled that regaining all they’d lost depended solely on their obedience to God, they would have made every effort possible to avoid falling once again into disobedience. And that’s why they were kept ignorant of their origin. They needed to show they could use their God-given free will in the right way. That they were willing to obey, no matter what.

But instead, they forgot.

Finally, Adam and Eve fell again as well. Their subjects were clashing and they became tempted by the possibility of giving everyone a little more space. This, they thought, might bring peace. “Why don’t some of us just move over there?” Eve said. They didn’t remember they’d been specifically forbidden from crossing that line.

If it had been otherwise, it wouldn’t have been a real test.

Eve was the first to go to the other world, over there, which looked ever so delightful. Then she went to fetch Adam and show him what she’d discovered. “Look, Adam! It’s marvelous!” As soon as he joined her, he too had committed the sin. And as they walked into the adjoining territory, admiring this new sphere, they suddenly felt a pang of conscience. In that moment, they remembered that God had forbidden them to cross the border. Now they had both broken his command, revealing their inability to obey.

They returned home to Paradise feeling very uneasy. Next thing they knew, the voice of God was calling out to them. They had failed. God had given them a test to see if they merited a relatively short return home to God. In the end, Lucifer and his devious powers had prevailed, successfully tempting the returning spirits to disobey God all over again. It wasn’t just Adam and Eve who blew it, as the story in the Bible suggests, but all the spirits living with them in Paradise.

Ushered Out of Paradise

God is not a being like you and me, but more like the force that enlivens and supports all of life. Yet, like us, God has free will. This is the defining characteristic that assures we can each return to Heaven one day and reunite with God. No aspect of the Fall has ever, or will ever, take away our free will. In this instance, using his own free will, God once more took action. All spirits were then ushered out of Paradise and sent back into the lower planes of darkness.

So there were no more blossoming flowers and none of that delicious fruit. We had robbed ourselves of a speedy return to Heaven. Our only choice was to wait for God to create another opportunity for us to work our way back home. This time, the journey would be much longer, and there would be suffering along the way. Adam was told, “Next time, you will have to win your bread through your own sweat,” and Eve was told, “You will bear children with great pain.”

We robbed ourselves of a speedy return to heaven.

With that, memories of heavenly splendor were once again wiped away. Darkness overcame all who had fallen. Everyone existed in distress.

There were a variety of levels of darkness, and each spiritual being was directed the level where they belonged, according to their degree of guilt. Submerged in unhappiness and despair, all had to wait, all the while blaming each other for having caused their own suffering.

But because God is a God of mercy and compassion, he sent spirits of consolation who brought messages of hope: God was preparing another way for all to be tested anew. But it would be a long time before new spheres could be created. Many clung to the dream of redemption, whereas others became bitter and turned away, filling themselves with hatred.

–Jill Loree

This Three-Part Series has been adapted from The Guide Speaks, Q&As with the Pathwork Guide: Earth Conditions; Pathwork Guide Lecture #120: The Individual and Humanity, and Jesus: New Insights into His Life and Mission, “Chapters: The Creation of Paradise, The Great Test, The Second Fall, The Expulsion from Paradise, The Creation of Earth, and The Creation of Man,” by Walther Hinz.

Read Part One | Part Two | Part Three

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