What is the New Age?

Imogene C. Fales, “The New Age,” Religio-Philosophical Journal (Chicago), May 31, 1884:6

The New Age is not yet crystallized into form.  All the elements necessary to its crystallization are being rapidly evolved.  They must blend into a homogeneous whole before we can truly say that we have entered upon the New Age.  At the present time, it exists potentially.  It exists in the minds of individual men and women as a spiritual force and power not yet externalized into being.  But it is largely subjective.  There is no corresponding social environment, answering to this subjective condition.  This environment is now in process of formation; and as it has been with individuals in whom new life has been made manifest, that conflict, suffering, yea and almost death itself, were the means of its evolution, so will it be with society.

Forces now being developed will not blend and shape themselves into the beauty of an orderly social life save through a similar process of conflict and suffering.  Crystallization is dependent upon agitation.  The work of life is the adjusting of external and internal relations.  Socially, we are beginning to enter upon the birth-throes of a new order of life.  These throes will continue until the new life is made manifest, and the adaptation between internal forces and social relations is complete.  This will constitute the New Age.  The civilization of the future will not be simply an improvement upon that of the present; it will be of another kind; just as the animal was a distinct advance upon the vegetable and the human upon the animal, because of the introduction of new elements, so will the New Age be an advance upon the age in which we are now living.  New forces will have been evolved, and just as every new form of life begins germinally and gradually unfolds, so will it be with the New Age; its full beauty cannot yet be discerned.  It is faintly shadowed forth in the Scriptures where it is described as the “New Jerusalem,” “The bride descending out of heaven,” showing that the forces now at work for the final redemption of humanity are of spiritual origin.

Closely connected with the subject of the New Age is that of the religion of the future.  If we concede the fact that the material universe had its origin in the immaterial or spiritual, beginning as a divine thought, and gradually, through successive stages of development, was externalized into form, then it follows that the religion of the future has a corresponding genesis in the life of spirit of God, within the soul of man.  And as the spirit of God can in no wise differ from the spirit of Christianity, it also follows that a spiritualized Christianity will be the religion of future, and will result from the closer union of God and man, and will be the “second coming” of Christ upon the earth.

In the New Age the animating principle of social life will be co-operation; man helping man.  The animating principle of to-day is competition, man opposing man.

“Howbeit, that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural, and afterward that which is spiritual.  The first man is of the earth, earthy; the second man is the Lord from heaven.”


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