Rebirth, the Neophyte’s Initiation

The world defines a rebirth as "a second or new birth, a reincarnation." Mystically, a rebirth is being born again in consciousness, continually to a higher degree.

“You must be reborn every hour.”—Edna Lister

The Neophyte is the first of the Seven Degrees. The Neophyte’s need is to lift personal desires, appetites, and emotions to achieve physical balance. As you "die" to self-expressions, you are reborn to the Christ-life to be made anew in a long process either of relinquishing self’s hold or as an instantaneous act of soul surrender to the Light of God. Rebirth is the Neophyte’s initiation.

Rebirth is not a once-in-a-lifetime act or experience. Rebirth means that you are learning, opening the doors of your mind and letting the new light of illumination penetrate and permeate your brain cells and memory moment to moment.

The rebirth in consciousness is perhaps the most common initiation you experience, hourly, daily. You are reborn in consciousness each time you say, "Aha!" When you see something new or make sense of what you have not understood before, you are reborn.

Your identity, your knowledge of your self, of your soul shifts with each rebirth, and you reintegrate yourself at a new and higher level. Rebirth is essential to becoming all you really are, and who and what God designed you to be.

For those who ask how many rebirths you must experience, we say that it is a seemingly endless process of metamorphosis. With each reintegration of identity you spin a protective chrysalis in which to gestate your "new" reality. When you are strong enough, you break free yet again.

Your new soul wings carry you just so much higher, then you must be reborn to another newer, greater consciousness. The greatest of these Rebirth experiences always involves reawakening to God and His Christ as the center of your life and consciousness. Each Rebirth takes you farther on the Way Home.

Edna Lister on the Initiation of Rebirth

Desire must ascend to mate with will, which becomes Wisdom, as desire becomes Love, and the Holy Spirit is born within.—Edna Lister, How to Make Your Dreams Reality, January 25, 1933.

Christ, reborn in you, descends into your mortal nature and environment to work through you to lift you up again to perfection and wholeness. This is his service of love to us, that by his love and wisdom, we may be fully redeemed, spirit, soul and body. The manger, in which Christ was born, symbolizes the lowly estate of our personal nature, into which he is reborn to develop in us and through us the virtue of the Son of God.—Edna Lister, The Christian Home, December 22, 1935.

Physical, emotional and mental pain often accompanies being full born into your great and high estate again.—Edna Lister, December 26, 1938.

The Neophyte initiation is Rebirth, the soul awakening to consciousness of its divine origin and heritage.—Edna Lister, A Design for Ascension, 1941.

As the phoenix, you arise from the dead ashes of your past misuse of Power, and are reborn to new life. "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."—John 3:5. This rebirth must come with every breath you draw.—Edna Lister, A Design for Ascension, 1941.

You are born from above of pure golden Light.—Edna Lister, March 19, 1941.

When you are reborn, Christ knocks from above. You open the door, he lifts you up, and you sup with him on manna and the nectar of the gods, the bread of eternal life and the chalice of immortality.—Edna Lister, Open Doors, March 15, 1942.

You are born into a level of consciousness whereby you must discard preconceived ideas and prejudices to reach up and bring forth new visions for yourself, your family and earth.—Edna Lister, December 4, 1947.

Read John 3:1-16. When you are fully ascended in consciousness, you are not born again of flesh.—Edna Lister, I Remember, October 8, 1950.

Rebirth, transformation and transfiguration are three steps to ascension. You are reborn every time you look up to God. You must be reborn with each breath you inhale. You can be reborn every minute because transformation goes on constantly. It can take days, months and sometimes years to bring forth a healing. Every time you give up fears, resentments or negative emotions, your sacrifice transforms you. Keep breathing the high breath, and finally you learn how to take half a breath here and half there while you stand here, balanced between inner and outer.—Edna Lister, From Surrender to Ascension, January 15, 1954.

When you are reborn, you have no father or mother, no husband or wife, no children; you have God. You walk with God.—Edna Lister, July 23, 1955.

"Whoever drinks of this water shall thirst again. But whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life."—John 4:10. You are reborn from above, when Light descends to the sacrum, awakening it, causing it to bubble up as an artesian well, to everlasting life. You are reborn every time you look up in consciousness toward the Source.—Edna Lister, The Well of Living Waters, July 31, 1955.

When you are reborn into a new, higher consciousness, you are like a child until the earth crystallization wears off.—Edna Lister, September 26, 1957.

You must be reborn every hour.—Edna Lister, Soul Integration, December 8, 1957.

You are reborn every time you look up toward the Source. When you fill the bloodstream with the Holy Breath, God fills you, unless you close it out with lukewarmness. When you look up, you increase the quantity of the Holy Breath in the blood; you breathe the Christ principle and it condenses in your blood from pure Light to atomic substance to replace the blood cells. This is the soul being renewed and reborn from above, the only way you can be reborn. Unless the Holy Breath refreshes the soul, you suffer physical, emotional, mental and spiritual anemia.—Edna Lister, June 12, 1958.

You are chained to the cross of matter until the spirit of the Christ (love, wisdom, joy and faith) is reborn within you. Then you begin Ascension.—Edna Lister, July 1, 1958.

Rebirth is either a long process or an instantaneous act. To fulfill the law of rebirth, you must die daily to old self-expressions and be reborn to the new Christ-life. You mate desire to will, which is the first marriage of the Lamb.—Edna Lister, The Pioneering Mystic, May 5, 1959.

Rebirth is the Mystic Brotherhood initiation of the Via Christa. Jesus emphasized this: "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."—John 3:3. A rebirth breaks the shackles of the subconscious with all its old ideas, opinions and prejudices. You must be reborn in consciousness to control and later master the little self. A rebirth makes you childlike in your simplicity of acceptance. "Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein."—Mark 10:15.—Edna Lister, Eight Great Powers of Being, June 23, 1959.

You can have a miracle only through Rebirth, which is a higher level of consciousness and faith in God.—Edna Lister, Healing by Principle, July 12, 1959.

Because God made us, we know we are born of personality and principle; when we realize this anew, we are "reborn."—Edna Lister, Your Full Birthright, December 6, 1959.

You never forget the flash and explosion of illumination you experience in a rebirth; every cell in your body knows it.—Edna Lister, December 11, 1960.

"Whatever is born of God overcomes the world."—1 John 5:4. You must use your thinking faculties to be "born of God" and to "overcome the world."—Edna Lister, Your Contact With Cosmic Power, October 8, 1961.

The initiation of Rebirth is a new awakening of conscience and what it means to obey law. Every conversion is a rebirth in consciousness.—Edna Lister, Heaven, a Place to Fill, April 10, 1962.

You must understand that your source is "the Word," then have faith in your source to identify with the Source. You are the sum of your own identity, what you put your faith in and what you practice. You hold consciousness of your identity in the Source when you practice this constant rebirth. The two essential laws are to be reborn and to be a witness to this rebirth.—Edna Lister, Identity, Your Hope of Glory, April 29, 1962.

Earth is a school of rebirth and it operates on exact formulae. Rebirth is a mystical term; "re" means to go back to, and "birth" means something new. Rebirth is a mystical statement meaning that you have fulfilled some goal or vision. Even if you just bumble along, you finally reach that far horizon. When family or friends crowd you on your vision of truth, it is a sign of a rebirth.

To be reborn, you must leave the past behind; don’t ruminate on yesterday like a cow chewing its cud. As you descended to earth, you laid down a precious pearl of wisdom at every level to gain the extra substance you needed to descend. Rebirth means ascending on your life chord and picking up the pearls of wisdom you left at higher levels. You are reborn as often as you have a new idea or illumination. People say, "You are in the world now, so be realistic," but you are also in the kingdom of heaven.

When you become aware of a new horizon, you find that it expands. You accept the fact that to be reborn, you must accept God’s "possible" and drop humanity’s "impossible." You must dare to take on the sacrifice of self and surrender to God. Take up your inner responsibility and be reborn.—Edna Lister, The Rebirth, June 9, 1963.

Healing is a rebirth or descent of Holy Ghost to set you afire from above. It brings a change in the metabolism of the physical body.—Edna Lister, June 18, 1963.

You must lift all self to be born again of God, begotten of God.—Edna Lister, August 6, 1964.

What we call the "dweller on the threshold of consciousness" is a cloud of every negative thing you have thought, spoken or done. When you are reborn, the Power moving through the body while you are in that high state of consciousness shatters the dweller, and Light absorbs it. Sometimes the resulting fragments return to you as soul debts.—Edna Lister, Religion and the World, November 5, 1967.

Soul birth is more painful than physical birth on earth.—Edna Lister, December 18, 1967.

Conscience cannot be born until the creature consciousness "hears about it"; a sense of remorse awakens, and an albatross of guilt plagues him. One who rehashes his guilt is unconsciously remorseful; he begins "doing" when he tires of "chewing the cud."—Edna Lister, From Surrender of Self to Soul Ascension, May 16, 1971.

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A Story That Illustrates Rebirth

Nicodemus Asks Jesus About Rebirth: There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be? Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things? And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.—John 3:1-21.

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New Testament on Rebirth

Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.—Matthew 18:3.

Law of Contraction: No man also seweth a piece of new cloth on an old garment: else the new piece that filled it up taketh away from the old, and the rent is made worse.—Mark 2:21.

Law of Expansion: And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new bottles.—Mark 2:22.

Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.—Mark 10:15.

[The kingdom is composed of innocent children.] Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.—Luke 18:16-17.

As many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.—John 1:12-13.

Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.—John 3:5-7.

If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.—2 Corinthians 5:17.

Put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; and be renewed in the spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.—Ephesians 4:22-24.

If ye know that [Christ] is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.—1 John 2:29.

Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.—1 John 4:7-8.

Whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.—1 John 5:4.

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Edna Miriam Lister
1884 – 1971
The original Christian Pioneering Mystic,
Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister

Etymology of birth: Old Norse, bher-, "to carry; to bear children"; Old English beran, "to carry."

Rebirth is the Neophyte Degree’s initiation.


The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

The Oxford English Dictionary: Compact Edition 2 volumes. Oxford University Press, 1971.

Related Topic

See Neophyte