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First Book of the First Lords

Being cotemporary with the Book of Sethantes, Son of Jehovih. That is to say, as Sethantes was God of heaven, so in the same period of time his Lords had dominion on the earth, and this is their book, even as the preceding one was God's book.

Chapter I

1. In the beginning God created the heavens of the earth; and the Lord made man upright. And man was naked and not ashamed; neither knew man the sin of incest, but he dwelt as the beasts of the field.

2. And the Lord brought the angels of heaven to man; by his side took they on forms like unto man, having all the organs and attributes of mortals, for it was the time of the earth for such things to be.

3. And it came to pass that a new race was born on the earth, and these were called I'hins, because they were begotten of both heaven and earth. Hence it became a saying: The earth conceived of the Lord.

4. And the name of the first race was Asu (Adam), because they were of the earth only; and the name of the second race was I'hin (Abel), because they were capable of being taught spiritual things.

5. And the Lord said: Of all that live on the face of the earth, or in the waters thereof, or in the air above, that breathes the breath of life, man only have I delivered unto knowledge of his Creator.

6. And the Lord spake unto the I'hin, through his angels spake he to them, saying: Go hide thy nakedness, for it is the commandment of God.

7. And The I'hins were afraid, and they clothed themselves, and were no longer naked before the Lord.

8. And the Lord commanded the angels to give up their forms, and to be no more seen as mortals. And it was done. And the Lord said unto them: Because ye brought forth life, which is in flesh and blood, ye shall minister unto man for six generations on the face of the earth. And it was so.

9. And that man may continue to walk upright, ye shall teach him the law of incest, for man of himself cannot attain to know this.

10. Neither shall ye permit the I'hins to dwell with Asu (Adam), lest his seed go down in darkness.

11. And man was thus inspired of the Lord, and he walked upright, and prospered on the earth.

12. But after a season man became conceited in his own judgment, and he disobeyed the commandments of God.

13. And he strayed out of the garden of paradise and began to dwell with the asu'ans (Adams), and there was born into the world a new race called Druk (Cain), and they had not the light of the Father in them, neither could they be inspired with shame, nor of heavenly things.

14. And the I'hins were grateful to the Lord, and they gave sacrifice in burnt offerings. And they said unto the Druks: Go ye and sacrifice unto the Lord, and he will prosper you. But the Druks understood not; and they fell upon the Lord's chosen, and slew them, right and left, taking their possessions.

15. And the Lord said unto the Druks: Because ye have slain your brethren ye shall depart out of the place of God; and that ye may be known to the ends of the earth I put my mark upon you.

16. And the mark of the Lord put upon the Druks was the shadow of blood, which, being interpreted, is war.

17. And the Lord God said: By this sign shall the tribes of Druk and their descendents be known unto the end of the world.

18. And woman, being more helpless than man, cried out with fear, saying: O Lord, how shall I bring forth unto thee, and not unto the sons of death?

19. And the Lord said: Because thou hast brought forth in pain, and yet called on my name, behold I will be unto thee as a shield and protector. For I will also put a mark upon the I'hins, my chosen, so thou shalt know them when they come unto thee.

20. And the Lord commanded the male I'hins, old and young, to be circumcised, that woman might not be deceived by the druks. And the I'hins circumcised one another, old and young; for it was the testimony of the Lord unto woman that seed of their seed was born to everlasting life.

21. And the druks (Cain) went away into the wilderness, and dwelt with the asu'ans and with one another.

22. God said: A boundary line will I make betwixt the tribes of druks and the I'hins; and this is the line that I the Lord God make betwixt them:

23. The I'hins shall labor and clothe themselves, and I will abide with them; but the druks shall wander in the wilderness, neither laboring nor clothing themselves.

24. And it was so.

Chapter II

1. The time of the habitation of Asu was eight thousand years; and they survived two thousand years after the time of the birth of the I'hins, which is to say:   Asu dwelt on the earth six thousand years, and then conceived of the chosen of God; and after that survived yet two thousand years.

2. And Asu (Adam) disappeared off the face of the earth.

3. And there remained on the earth the sacred people, the I'hins; and the carnivorous people, the druks.

4. The I'hins were white and yellow, but the druks were brown and black; the I'hins were small and slender, but the druks were tall and stout.

5. Now, because the druks had not previously obeyed the Lord, but went and dwelt with the asu'ans, there was a half-breed race born on the earth, called Yak, signifying ground people; and they burrowed in the ground like beasts of the forest. And the Yaks did not walk wholly upright, but also went on all fours.

6. God said: Because the Yaks cannot be taught the crime of incest, behold they shall not dwell forever on the earth. So also shall it be with the druks, save wherein they cohabit with the I'hins, whose seed is born unto everlasting life. But with the druks, and their heirs that spring from the Yaks, there shall be an end, both in this world and the next.

7. And the arms of the Yaks were long, and their backs were stooped and curved. And the Lord said:   Because they are the fruit of incest, and not capable of speech, nor of eternal life in heaven, the I'hins shall make servants of them.

8. And that they may not tempt my chosen to bring forth fruit unto destruction, they shall be neutralized in my sight. And the angels of God taught the I'hins to make eunuchs of the Yaks; of the males and females made the I'hins eunuchs of the Yaks, and took them for servants.

9. And the Lord said: The Yaks shall serve the I'hins, and build and sow and reap for them. And it was so.

10. The I'hins were disposed to live alone, but the Lord called them together, saying: Come and dwell together in cities. For it is meet that ye live after the manner of my kingdoms in heaven.

11. Build ye therefore unto the Lord your God; and my angels shall dwell with you, teaching you to sing and dance for the glory of your Creator.

12. And man built unto the Lord, and established worship on earth after the manner of heaven.

13. Now it came to pass that the druks came to witness the rites and ceremonies of the chosen, but they took no part therein, neither comprehended they the meaning thereof.

14. And God said unto the I'hins: That ye may teach some of them of the Lord your God, build ye within the house of worship an image of me; in likeness of man build ye it. And I will manifest unto as many as are capable of everlasting life.

15. And the I'hins, men and women, with their servants, built images of stone and clay and wood unto the Lord, and stood them by the altars of sacrifice.

16. And in the time of worship, the angels of the Lord came and possessed the idols and spake therefrom, with audible voices spake before mortals.

17. And the druks inquired of the I'hins as to the cause thereof. And the I'hins said: Behold, there is a God in heaven, more subtle than the air of heaven. He it was that brought us forth out of darkness. He speaketh in idol that ye may know he abideth with his people.

18. The druks said: What saith he? The I'hins answered, saying: That whosoever hath attained to remember God is in the way of everlasting life.

19. The druks inquired, saying: How shall a man live forever? Behold, ye that believe also die!

20. The I'hins answered, saying: As the voice of the Lord is unseen but potent, so is there a spirit in man unseen and potent, which shall never die, but ascend to heaven to habitations prepared by the Lord.

21. And many of the druks pondered on these things, and their thoughts quickened their souls within them, so that they brought forth heirs unto eternal salvation.

22. And the Lord said unto the I'hins: Because ye have done a good thing, go ye abroad, by the roadsides and in other places, and build images unto me and mine, and my angels shall bestow gifts and signs and miracles.

23. And the I'hins covered the roadways of the earth over with idols of stone and wood and clay, and the angels of heaven descended to the idols and established thereabout heavenly kingdoms.

24. And when man came hither, and called on the name of the Lord, it was as a password for the angels; and they wrought miracles, and otherwose gave evidence unto man of the Unseen.

Chapter III

1. And God gave commandments unto man, that the earth might be a place of rejoicing forever. And these are the commandments of the Lord God as given in that day:

2. Thou shalt strive to remember the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul.

3. Thou shalt not kill man, nor beast, nor bird, nor creeping thing, for they are the Lord's.

4. Thou shalt build walls round about thy cities, that beasts and serpents may not enter and do thee harm. And if thy habitation be in the wilderness, thou shalt build mounds of wood and earth to sleep on at night, that serpents and beasts may not molest thee.

5. The I'hins inquired of the Lord, saying: If we build walls around about our cities, how shall we get in and out? How shall we gather our harvests of fruit and nuts and seeds of the field? How shall we ascend on the mounds which we build in the wilderness?

6. The Lord said: Behold, my angels shall teach you to build ladders and how to use them. And when ye go into the city at night ye shall take the ladders in after you; and when ye come out in the morning ye shall let the ladders down again.

7. And God's angels taught the chosen these things, and man provided the cities with ladders, and he provided the mounds with ladders also; according to the commandment of God were these things done.

8. And the I'hins prospered and spread abroad over the face of the earth; hundreds of thousands of cities and mounds built they, and they rejoiced in the glory of all created things. Neither killed they man, nor beast, nor fish, nor bird, nor creeping thing that breathed the breath of life.

9. And God saw that man was good and grateful in all things; and God called unto the angels of heaven, saying: Why are the I'hins good? For, as yet, they are ignorant!

10. And the angels answered, saying: Because thou saidst unto us: Go ye, as guardian angels, and inspire man to live without evil, even so have we administered unto the I'hins, guarding and inspiring them night and day.

11. God said: Why then, the I'hins have no honor. Except they learn of themselves to be good, they will be void of wisdom in heaven. For this reason ye shall withdraw a little, that man be tried as to his self-commandment.

12. And the angels withdrew awhile from the I'hins. And now it came to pass, that they had stored in their cities and on their mounds ample provision of food and raiment for the winter; but the druks followed not the example of the I'hins, for the druks stored up nothing.

13. And when the angels departed a little way, evil spirits came to the druks, and said unto them: Behold, it is winter, and ye are hungry. Go ye over the ladders and possess the stores of the I'hins.

14. And the druks plundered the I'hins; and evil spirits sat upon the I'hins also, and many of them were inspired to defend their stores. And war ensued; and it spread around about the whole earth.

15. And the I'hins besought the Lord as to why God suffered evil to come upon his chosen.

16. And the Lord said: Because ye depended upon me for all things, ye developed not yourselves.   Henceforth shall man learn to face evil on his own account; otherwise he could not attain to the Godhead in heaven.

17. Two entities hast thy Creator given thee, that which is flesh, and that which is spirit. And the flesh shall desire earthly things; but the spirit shall desire heavenly things.

18. Behold, when the druks came upon thee for thy stores, thy flesh cried out war,and thy people fell.

19. Again have I come to thee to raise thee up; to make thee understand the spirit within. It is that,   and not the flesh, which shall learn to triumph.

20. The I'hins said: Our people are scattered and gone; will they not mingle with the druks, and thus go out in darkness?

21. The Lord said: Behold there were druks who had learned a little from the images; now because thy people are scattered and gone, they shall go amongst the druks and teach the law of incest and the name of God, and they shall also begin to hide their nakedness.

22. So the Lord inspired other people besides the I'hins, to make and wear clothes, and they thus wore them.

23. And again the Lord brought the I'hins together in lodges and cities, and he said unto them: Henceforth ye shall live upon the earth as an example of righteousness. And your brethren who have mingled with the tribes of darkness shall no longer molest you, but be your defenders and protectors.

24. And there began to be a new tribe on the earth; and they were called I'huans, because they were half-breeds, betwixt the druks and I'hins. The I'huans were red like copper; and they were taller and stronger than any other people in all the world.   And the Lord commanded the I'huans, saying:

25. Protect ye the I'hins, the little people, white and yellow; call them the sacred people. For ye are of them, and ye are also of the Lord your God.   And it was so.

Chapter IV

1. About this time man began to use his lip and tongue in enunciating words, prior to which he spoke in the thorax.

2. And the Lord spake unto the I'hin, saying: That the l abor of the Lord thy God may be remembered on the earth, go provide me a stone and I will engrave it with mine own hand, and it shall be called Se'moin (see first tablet, Book of Saphah), because it shall be a testimony unto all nations and peoples, on the earth, of the first written language in all the world.

3. And the I'hins prepared a stone, and hewed it flat and then polished it smooth; and the Lord came down in the night and engraved it. And the Lord explained it; through his angels taught he the I'hins the meaning of the characters engraved thereon.

4. And the Lord said: Go into all cities in all the countries of the world, and provide ye copies like unto the tablet I have given. So it came to pass, the angels of heaven inspired the I'hins to make tablets and to read them, that the first language of the earth (Panic) might be preserved to the races of men. And it was so.

5. Now the I'huans partly obeyed the Lord and partly obeyed the way of the flesh; and they became warriors and destroyers; nevertheless they harmed not the I'hins, nor suffered harm to come upon them.

6. God had commanded the I'hins to make eunuchs of the Yaks, the monstrosities, and use them as servants; for the Lord saw that the Yaks were not capable of everlasting life in heaven.

7. Now the I'huans also served the Yaks in the same way; but they disobeyed God in inflicting the neutral gender on their enemies whom they captured in war.   And although they were themselves half-breeds with the druks, yet they hated the druks, and pursued them with vengeance.

8. In those days the relative proportion of the races of men were: I'hins, one hundred; I'huans, three hundred; druks, five thousand; Yaks, five thousand; and of monstrosities betwixt man and beast, three thousand; but the latter died each generation, for they had not the power of procreation amongst themselves.

9. And God saw the work of destruction going on (of the I'huans slaughtering right and left), and he sent the I'hins to preach amongst them, saying to the I'hins.

10. Thus say ye to the I'huans: Whomsoever is created alive, kill not, for it is the commandment of the Lord.

11. For in the time of your most success in slaughtering your fellow-man, ye are also peopling heaven with the spirits of vengeance. And they will return upon you, and even the I'huans shall turn upon one another; thus saith God.

12. But the I'huans understood not; believed not. And it came to pass that great darkness covered the earth. And man, save the few I'hins, gave up to wickedness all his days.

13. And the Lord's people worshipped and preached in the temples, and the Lord and his heavenly hosts manifested unto them; but all the other races of men heard not, would not come to learn of God.

14. And the Lord became tired in his labor, and He called his angels to him, and he said unto them:   Behold, man on the earth hath gone so far from my ways he will not heed my commandments; he cannot hear my voice.

15. And your labor is in vain also. For which reason we will tarry no longer on the earth till man hath exhausted the evil that is in him.

16. So the Lord and his angel hosts departed away from the earth. And clouds came over the face of the earth; the moon shone not, and the sun was only as a red coal of fire; and the stars stood in the firmament as well in the day as at night.

17. The harvests failed; the trees yielded no nuts, and the roots on which man feedeth ceased to grow.

18. And the monstrosities, and the Yaks, and the druks, died off, tens of millions of them. And even yet they were not extinct. Nevertheless, the I'huans suffered less; and the I'hins not at all. For the Lord had previously inspired them to provide against the coming famine.

19. And the Lord bewailed the earth and the generations of man: I made man upright and walked by his side, but he slipped aside and fell, said the Lord. I admonished him, but he would not heed. I showed him that every living creature brought forth its own kind; but he understood not, believed not; and he dwelt with beasts; falling lower than all the rest.

End of the First Book of the First Lords.

Plate 3a.--ASU, THE FIRST RACE.

Plate 3b.--I'HIN, I'HUAN, YAK.


Continued

Index to Oahspe