The Term Form, The School of Form
Different philosophers use the term Form in different ways. The history of the term is a long one, and it has been used in both Eastern and Western philosophy. I would like to make the term Form a familiar one to the New Age community and to all students of philosophy.
The term Form has several shades of meaning. Plato used the words “Form”, or “Idea”, to refer to a kind of spiritual blueprint, after which all material objects are patterned. These spiritual “forms” exist in an ideal world or in the mind of God.
In Eastern mysticism, “form” is used in a very different” way. The phrase “form and void” is often heard. In that case, the words “nothingness” or “void” refer to the Absolute, the highest state of being, God. And in that system, “form” means the material world, the physical universe.
The Platonic concept of Form influenced Western thinkers for a long time. Even into the thirteenth century Saint Thomas Aquinas was declaring God to be “pure form or energy”. So you can see “form” means almost opposite things to Eastern and Western philosophers.
In this book the term Form is used in another unique way. Form is one of the five aspects, or components of the universe. The universe is made of Form, Space, Powers, Forces, and Energies. Form and space mean, of course, matter and space. I use the term Form instead of matter for philosophical reasons. Form is eternal. Matter is Form, in a dense physical state.
Some philosophers use the term Form to mean the physical world in general, and go under the assumption that matter is temporary, gross, even illusion. But consider this; all matter is actually energy. There was one original, divine energy, and that original energy descended, condensed, slowed down, and became physical matter. Therefore there is no such thing as “dead” matter, only energy in different states. Spiritual energy became everything in the physical world. So physical form is not some kind of dead solid we have to escape from or leave behind, it is our own spiritual energy that has to evolve with us to the perfect divine state.