The Secret of Light

The Secret of Light, by Walter Russell

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By Walter Russell
Published by The University of Science and Philosophy, Waynesboro, VA, 1974. 1994. Buy this Book!

In the Foreword, after listing many factors by way of pointing out how little our present-day civilization has progressed toward spiritual understanding of the universe, Walter Russell offers the following: “Within the secret of Light is the answer to all of these heretofore unanswered questions, and many more, which the ages have not yet solved. This revelation of the nature of Light will be the inheritance of man in the coming New Age of greater comprehension. Its unfoldment will prove the existence of God by methods and standards acceptable to science and religion alike. It will lay a spiritual foundation under the present material one of science.” At the beginning of the Foreword (and also preceding each chapter) clarifications and extensions on the qualities of Light are offered with quotations from Russell’s great work, The Divine Iliad: “Man progresses in cycles of approximately twenty-five hundred years. At the beginning of each cycle of his growing awareness of the Light within him, God sends messages through prepared messengers to further his comprehension of the Light. Comprehension of these cosmic messages gradually exalts mankind into higher beings, and thus each cycle is one more step for man toward full awareness of the Light, and of his Oneness with God.” In Chapter One, “The Eternal Question,” the author emphasizes: “A new cycle of three thousand years duration is now in its birth throes.”

From “Concerning the Divine Iliad”: The Divine Iliad cannot be fully published for many years. As much of it as can now be published will appear in these pages. Further portions of it will be released as the world is ready to receive them.” The Divine Iliad is currently available in two volumes, and the second part of the first volume includes The Secret of Light.

Walter Bowman Russell, born in Boston, Mass., (May 19, 1871–May 19, 1963), published the first version of The Secret of Light in 1927 with the title The Universal One. However, he came to regard this first effort as a failure and twenty years later, in 1947, re-published this phenomenal work with its present title. According to the Biographical Information on Walter Russell online (address below), in 1921, at the age of 49, Walter Russell experienced his illumination into the “Light of Cosmic Consciousness” during a time period that lasted 39 days and nights. This was the longest period of his illumination but not the first. He first “left his body and felt the ecstasy of cosmic consciousness” at the age of seven, and after that time he had similar experiences every year during the month of May. Pentecost Sunday often falls around mid-May and it seems fitting to associate the significance of this observance with the life and work of Walter Russell. From the biography cited, Russell died on his 92nd birthday, “mentally awake and active right up until the end.” In 2013, Pentecost Sunday falls on May 19th.

Russell left conventional schooling at the age of nine to help support his family. He was “a musician from infancy,” and a blind neighbor, his first teacher, taught him to play the piano. At the age of 13 he became a church organist and also entered art school. From this time period onward he was entirely self-supporting and self-educated. There was first a crisis, however, when at the age of 14 he became seriously ill with “black diphtheria” and was declared dead by a physician. Yet during this severe illness he experienced his second great illumination wherein self-healing knowledge was revealed, and he was able to rise from the sickbed perfectly healed.

The Secret of Light is divided into three parts: Part I, Omniscience, The Universe of Knowing; Part II, Omnipotence, The Universe of Power; Part III, Omnipresence, The Universe of Being, Postulates and Diagrams.  There are 17 chapters in Part I and 16 chapters in Part II, although the chapters are generally only a few pages in length, enabling the reader to more easily assimilate such subjects as “Sensation and Consciousness,” “Knowledge Versus Thinking,” “Thinking Versus Sensing,” “Electrical Awareness,” “Motion Simulating Rest,” “Genesis,” “The Unfolding-Refolding Principle,” and “The Illusion of Attraction and Repulsion of Matter.” Part III, subtitled “This Magnetic-Electric Universe,” contains 77 pages of diagrams, beginning with the diagram representing “The Mystery of Gravitation and Radiation,” and ending with two complex diagrams described by the legends as “Opposite actions simultaneously void each other,” and “This universe of matter is composed of pairs of negations which never exceed zero.” Russell’s “Periodic Table of the Elements” is shown on page 262. (“In 1941, the American Academy of Sciences conferred a doctorate on him, after several laboratories had isolated the elements which he had foreseen: Deuterium, Tritium, Neptunium and Plutonium.”)

At the beginning of a study of this book the serious reader will ask: Who is the Being who is communicating with Russell and instructing him about the secrets of Light, the Being of the Divine Iliad? The source is identified as the One, God the Father, as still, magnetic center of the universe, as “the fulcrum,” and as the foundation of all material existence. God the Son, whom Russell refers to as Jesus or the Nazarene, can also be recognized: “I am the Light; I alone AM… All men will come to Me in due time, but theirs is the agony of awaiting.” “All power is from the One. All power returns to the One.” The Laws of the universe, of the One God, are accentuated throughout this work. “The Cause is real. The Effect is but a simulation of the reality.” “This material universe of many seemingly separate parts is electric.” “Whatever man desires, the God in him will create. Man must, however, co-create with God according to God’s universal law. If man breaks that law, the law will break him to an equal extent.”

In 1957, Walter Russell and his second wife, Lao Russell (1904–1988), published a little book called Atomic Suicide. Considering the span of Russell’s lifetime, and that of Lao, it is clear that perhaps the most important aspect of his mission and message was to communicate the direct response of God to the emergence of the so-called “atomic age,” to communicate God’s answer and warning regarding unlawful interferences with Nature — activities that continue to prevail in the name of science — as well as the abuses by humanity of the natural world. His lifetime also just preceded our electronic and computer age. Russell’s work in the secret of Light is undoubtedly at the highest and purist level of spiritual-scientific, geometric and mathematical thinking (it was not within his mission to describe the universe as consisting of hierarchical orders of living spiritual Beings as does Rudolf Steiner), yet his work can be easily understood by everyone. Everyone who has ever given any thought or serious study to the mysteries of the universe can increase his or her understanding to a degree that will prove very surprising, at many levels of endeavor and inquiry, with only one reading of The Secret of Light.

Walter Russell, from many of his later photographs, has an appearance that is often described as “everyone’s kindly grandfather” – a wise grandfather full of piety and humility who will remind us often that “God is Light. God is Love.”  He does not seem to quite fit the picture of the Initiate as presented by Rudolf Steiner in many lectures from many different sides within Anthroposophy. However, it may be that his lifework bears a relationship to Rudolf Steiner’s statements on the return of Vulcan (lecture referenced below).

If Russell could be compared with a well-known figure in the history of Christianity, it might be Saint Paul. Thomas Aquinas, who lived during a very dark period of the Middle Ages, frequently quoted Saint Paul: “For now we see in a glass dimly, but then face to face.” — Corinthians 1, 13:12. There can be no doubt that Walter Russell has had face-to-face meetings with God and, astonishingly, every year during the month of May. Face-to-face meetings with God or one of His divine messengers have been promised for all of us, by Saints Paul and Thomas Aquinas, at some point along the way on our individual spiritual journeys. – Review by Martha Keltz


The University of Science and Philosophy

Biographical Information on Walter Russell

Rudolf Steiner regarding the return of Vulcan: A Picture of Earth Evolution in the Future

There are many very helpful YouTube videos online about Walter Russell and Lao Russell and their work; just enter their names, or The University of Science and Philosophy, on the YouTube search line.

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  1. April 7th, 2013 at 17:31
    Quote | #1

    “That which man calls matter, or substance, has no existence
    whatsoever. So-called matter is but waves of the motion of light,
    electrically divided into opposed pairs, then electrically
    conditioned and patterned into what we call various substances of
    matter. Briefly put, matter is but the motion of light, and motion is
    not substance. It only appears to be. Take motion away and there
    would not be even the appearance of substance.”

    “Electricity manufactures all of the qualities and attributes of
    light in wave motion which we think of as substance.
    “I say that the real substance of any product whatsoever is not in
    the product at all, but is only in the thought behind the product.
    The thought itself is never created; it is but given symbolic form.

    The thought belongs to the thinker and to other thinkers who are
    capable of interpreting the symbolic form in which he expresses
    his thought. Thought and inspiration have no dimension
    whatsoever; they belong to the unseen and unseeable world.

    “I believe that every man, no matter how humble, is manifesting
    God, as His messenger; therefore every man should be worthy of
    his messengership by manifesting his Source to the very best of
    his ability, whether he runs the elevator for an industry or as its
    “I believe that every man can multiply his own ability by almost
    constant wordless REALIZATION of his unity with his Source”.

    “There is no use for energy of any kind whatsoever unless there is
    a plan back of it. You cannot get creative value out of concentrated
    energy by letting it go back into the static condition from which
    you borrowed it unless you have a plan for its use.

    Thinking is a dynamic state of motion which conceives patterns, forms, and images in the formless universe of space. We create by thinking patterns or ideas which we call ‘conceptions.’ We then concentrate our dynamic thought-energy into materializing those forms.

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