The Ancient Book of Wisdom
The age of Mysteries has come to be acknowledged as a common feature among some of the most ancient cultures of the world. Whether in India or in Chaldea, in Egypt or in Greece, in Atlantis or in some previously extant but now submerged islands of ancient times, there seemed to have flourished people with knowledge of secret truths. There was, undoubtedly, even a pre-Vedic age and a pre-Chaldean age, during which there seemed to have developed remarkable experiments and explorations leading to discoveries of momentous importance
The results of these discoveries seem, however, to have been lost in some developments of the past, or they seem to have been assimilated—probably very much diminished in the content and import—in some traditions of religion or of philosophy. It is thus difficult to determine what exactly was the knowledge that the ancients possessed, and what exactly was their real achievement and their contribution to the advancement of mankind.
There is, however, available in India, the most ancient record, known as the Veda, a composition of a unique and accomplished character, the language of which is mysterious and ambiguous, betraying some possible secret. There is no doubt that the Veda preceded the Upanishads, which are themselves very ancient. There is no doubt also that the Veda speaks of 'pitarah’, of the 'forefathers', and of their achievements in glorious terms. It seems, therefore, that we have in the Veda a record of some very ancient times (supposedly of 10,000 B.C. or of 5,000 B.C.), which might give us a clue of at least the Indian age of mysteries, and it might help us also in imagining or inferring what might have been the mysteries known and practised in other parts of the world.
There are, of course, historians who would like to convince us that the ancient times were barbaric, and that it would be vain to look for 'knowledge' or 'wisdom' in the traditions or records of those barbaric times. They would, of course, grant that these