The Philosophy of Natural Magic, by Henry Cornelius Agrippa, L. W. de Laurence ed. , at sacred-texts.com
The struggle between light and darkness, between good and evil, is as old as the world, and yet there is no principle of evil;
Evil or so-called sin is simply undeveloped good. Good and evil are the light and shadow of the one eternal principle of life, and each is necessary for the existence of the other.
The struggle between light and shadow is life, and there can be no life without a struggle.
Matter transmits force, but does not originate force. It is for a time the receptacle of power, but not the power. All essence of power belongs to Spirit. All pure force is invisible.
Matter and Spirit may be one to the Absolute and Infinite Being, but that one is Spirit. In human speech, matter is only the name of an effect whose cause is wrapped in mystery.
It remains for the human to penetrate the veil and solve the mystery. And the solution of this problem of mind and matter discovers man unto himself,
and binds him in loving union forever with the Infinite "I am," the Spirit of all.
Absence of feeling and of suffering only shows that the process of death has begun, or that the animal has taken full possession. Pain is not an element to be most dreaded; for, as gold is refined by fire, the Soul is refined by pain, and only through the death of suffering does the human Soul rise into eternal life.
If selfishness and the animal instinct have full sway, the Soul shrivels toward decay, while all its noble powers are congealed, its sensibilities benumbed, its vision blinded, its intellect dimmed, and from the once clear mirror the reflection of a noble Soul shines no more where the innermost temple might have been radiant with truth and virtue.
DEATH—Is death more to be feared because it is an enigma the mysteries of which western dull minds, because obscured by theology, cannot fathom, or their weak fancy cannot comprehend?
The human Soul is the anchorage or place of ideas. The Astral body or star magno is the mirror that reflects and records them, human thoughts being simply the clothing of these ideas. The spirit is the self-acting energy that produces the Idea.